Carmelite Sisters’ practical tips for prayer

Dear Sister,
Is there a best time to pray, given all the activities each day holds for me—working at my job and caring for and being with my family makes a very full day? Also, I’m not fully awake first thing in the morning and already mighty tired by the time I lay my head on the pillow. I thought I would “Ask a Carmelite Sister” for her input on how I can find some time to pray.

Dear Friend,
I commend highly your desire to find the “right time to pray.”  During a retreat, a priest shared that each person has a built-in clock.  We have expressions to confirm his statement. People say, “I’m not an early morning person” or “I do my best work at night when everyone else is asleep.”  So, your question is a good one.

The important thing is that you want to pray. You yearn to spend some time with God in prayer.  Each person has to find the “islands of prayer” in the sea of our frenzied activity so apparent in our culture. I know a person who works in downtown Los Angeles and parks his car several blocks away from where he works so that he can walk and pray both going to and from his job.

I know another person who has made it a habitual practice to consciously drive by his parish church on the way home from work and spend fifteen minutes in the adoration chapel before driving home. I know a mom who locks the bathroom door and prays.

St. Teresa says, “We need no wings to go in search of God, but only to find a place where we can be alone and communicate with Him, who dwells within us.” Continue reading


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