In honor of Father’s Day, here is an excerpt from Our Father: Reflections on the Lord’s Prayer, by Pope Francis.
Father. Without saying this word, without taking it to heart, we cannot pray.
To whom do I pray? Almighty God? Too far away. I cannot feel that he is near. Even Jesus did not refer to God as “the Almighty God.”
To whom do I pray? The cosmic God? That is fashionable these days, praying to the cosmic God. But that is nothing but a polytheistic idea of who God is, typified by a lite culture.
To whom do we pray? No, not a cosmic God, but a… Father. We have to pray to the Father! It is a powerful word, “father.”
We have to pray to the one who has begotten us, the one who has given us life. He has given life to everyone, of course, but “everyone” is too anonymous. He has given life to you. He has given life to me.
He is also the one who accompanies us on our journey. He knows our whole lives, the good and the not-so-good.
If we do not begin our prayer with this word, spoken not with our lips but with our hearts, we cannot pray as Christians.