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  • Justin Haggerty | The Daily Knight

Prayer of the Soul and of the Will

Praying Girl (CatholicTruth)

The Lord is the keeper of little ones: I was little and he delivered me. ~ Psalms 114:6

Can someone pray without knowing prayers or how to pray? Take a look at the "little ones." Without the intellect, the "little ones" offer their prayers from the soul and the will.

Several weeks ago, after coming home from work, I found my 3-year-old daughter's Holy Rosaries in front of the altar in our upstairs prayer and reading room. The Rosaries were sitting a couple feet away, near the spot where I kneel in prayer.

I told my wife about what I had found and my amazement that our daughter had been kneeling in front of the Crucifix. According to her reaction, my daughter had been bringing her Rosaries into the reading room for the past several days.

My daughter's devotions during Advent were no different. She often asked for her children's Bible, or pulled up a chair to grab it from our downstairs altar, and to kneel in front of the Advent wreath or pictures of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate Heart of Mary that we have on the wall.

In a beautiful way, she would attempt to read, but only voice the few words she knows and recognizes. Transitioning between toddler talk and pointing out familiar pictures, she carried out a full conversation with Heaven.

The other evening, she led her first prayer before dinner. Holding her hands together, she mumbled in toddler talk and concluded with amen. The look she gave me was of pure happiness.

Lastly, before yesterday's Candlemas, my daughter attempted to follow along in prayer as parishioners prayed the Holy Rosary. She didn't know the words, but she correctly said Hail Mary, Jesus, and amen at the right times.

From her attempts to genuflect, to touching her forehead three times in an attempt to make the sign of the cross, to wanting to kiss Jesus' "boo-boo's" on the Crucifix, my daughter displays a nearly perfect devotion to our Lord.

The faith of the "little ones" is so precious. Although the intellect is absent, these prayers are from my daughter's soul and her will. Only God can fully understand her intentions and devotions, but my daughter's love for Him is clear.

There is much that we can learn from the "little ones." Be meek, humble and full of love for the Lord, and He will deliver you. (Psalm 114:6)

In Christ Crucified and the Most Victorious Heart of Jesus.

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