Prayer is relevant anytime and anywhere. But when we make it one of our weekly or daily routines, we achieve much more.

The Holy Hour is a routine we received from Jesus.

 

Jesus’s Request

The practice of the Holy Hour started when Jesus appeared to Saint Margaret Alacoque in 1674 during her hour of prayer. This was not the first time Jesus appeared to her. However, on this particular occasion, Christ asked her to spend an hour meditating on His sufferings every Thursday and Friday night. According to St. Margaret, the Holy Hour was to be observed between 11pm to 12am. During this period, St. Margaret was sharing the agony and sufferings of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane.

Basically, the practice of the Holy Hour stands on 3 principles:

  1. The union with the suffering of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane
  2. The remedial prayer
  3. The gestures of self-humiliation.

The Concept and the Garden

The concept of the Holy Hour is based on the Gospel of Matthew during Jesus’ agony in the Garden of Gethsemane just before his crucifixion. This is how the Gospel of Matthew 26:38-40 captures the events that took place that night:
38 “Then He said to them, “My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with Me.” 39 “And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will.” 40 “And He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, “So, you men could not keep watch with Me for one hour?”
  According to St. Margaret, Jesus made it clear that He wishes His faithful friends to become partakers of that sorrow unto death which he suffered in the Garden of Olives. His followers should also join with Jesus in the humble prayer which He prayed to His Father at the time.  
His followers should also join with Jesus in the humble prayer which He prayed to His Father at the time.

Modern Tradition

The Holy Hour remained strictly confined within the worship of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. In 1911, it received the right to aggregation for the whole world and is now encouraged in the Catholic tradition. Also, Mother Teresa practiced the Holy Hour as a daily routine. According to her:
“Every Holy Hour we make so pleases the Heart of Jesus that it will be recorded in Heaven and retold for all eternity.”  
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What did Jesus find in Garden of Gethsemane?

Our lesson from Jesus is that at times of great turmoil, we always have access to the path of salvation

 

The Suffering of Jesus

The Garden of Gethsemane is where Jesus went to pray before the ordeal on the cross of Calvary. The Bible indicates that Jesus was extremely troubled and overwhelmed with sorrow, to the point of sweating drops of blood. For three times, Jesus Christ prayed if it was possible for the cup of suffering to be removed from him, but that the will of the Father would be done.

The 12th Chapter of the Book of Hebrew says that Jesus “endured the cross, scorning its shame” and that he did this “for the joy set before him”. Even though he was under pressure, by faith, he knew that he would experience great joy on the other side of the suffering. The Garden of Gethsemane, therefore, has a deep meaning.

Willingness is strength

Jesus’s strength to be the Savior is of fundamental importance. Jesus Christ was willing to die on the cross for our salvation and pay the penalty for our sins. According to 2nd Corinthians 5:21, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us so that in him we might become the righteousness of God”. This was the gospel of Jesus Christ.

“An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him” (Luke 22:43).

For two times Jesus woke up his disciples to remind them to pray so they wouldn’t fall into temptations. But they kept on falling into sleep and temptations. Even so, Jesus didn’t lose his faith, and although it did trouble him, he kept on praying. Then he had the strength he needed from God.

View from the Mount of Olives to the old city of Jerusalem

Mount of Olives yesterday and today

The Mount is one of the most beautiful locations in the Holy Land and it has a unique role in Jesus’s life. Where is it and what happened there? This article opens a series on the Holy Land and the Mount of Olives.

 

Location first

The Mount of Olives separates the city of Jerusalem from the Judean Desert; from here it begins its descent towards the Dead Sea. The Kidron Valley surrounds Jerusalem to the east and separates the Mount from the city. On the south, there is Mount Zion and on the north, there is Mount Scopus.

Unique Features

The Mountain has three areas of uniquely high ground from which descend steep roads to the valley. From the north to the south extends “Karm as-Sayyad” (“vineyard of the hunter”), reaching 818 meters of altitude; in the center is “Jebel et-Tur” (“holy mountain”) at 808 meters; and to the southwest, on the far side of the Jerusalem-Jericho road, is “Bet el Hawa” (“belly of the wind”), also known as “Mount Scandal”, at 713 meters high.

The Olives

The name of the Mountain comes from the olive trees that have grown on its slopes for thousands of years, and some of the oldest olive trees in the world are still there. The mountain is also known as the Mount of Unction. The reason for it origins from the use of the oil in the Jewish tradition. The oil from the leaves was used to anoint the high priests and the king.

Jesus on the Mountain

Jesus set foot on the mountain immediately after the last supper, crossing the valley into Gethsemane.

An especially relevant episode in Jesus’s life is also one of the most important Christian memories accrued on the Mount of Olives. That is the teaching of the Lord’s Prayer: Eleona or the Grotto of the Lord’s Prayer. But it isn’t the only one: Weeping over Jerusalem: Dominus Flevit. Acclamation upon his entry into the Holy City on the back of a donkey: the sanctuary of Bethphage. The prayer in the garden of Gethsemane followed by his capture:   and next to it there are – Garden of Olives and Grotto of Gethsemane. And Jesus’s Ascension into Heaven, which occurred at the summit of the mount: the Edicule of the Ascension.

Jesus Pray

How did Jesus pray?

The Importance of prayer, at any time

 

Prayer is a very important part of our spiritual lives as Christians. As it is extremely essential, Christians always wonder how they should pray and what for their prayers should take. Even though the answers to such questions may vary, it should be the aspiration of every Christian to make prayers an important aspect of their lives. Christ teaches us about prayer through his own examples. Jesus Christ prays frequently and by doing so, he shows us how to pray. This article gives an insight regarding prayer by reflecting on the prayer of Jesus at the Garden of Gethsemane.

Who is our teacher regarding prayers?

After Jesus arrived in the garden, He withdraws from his disciples and goes to pray, as recorded in Luke 22:41. Even though he prays for the whole of his life, this night is one of the several instances he isolates himself to pray, and by doing so, he provides an example for us. Christians should, therefore, try to make prayer part of their lives and focus exclusively on God. When making big decisions, Christians should always take the time to seek out the will of God.

Who is our Dad?

Jesus starts to pray by addressing God as Dad (Abba in Hebrew), according to Mark 14:36. He kneels down in the garden and starts preparing to embrace his passion and death. In the most difficult part of his life, Jesus prays. The prayer of Christ invites us to address God as children. Christ bridges the infinite gap between human and divine, welcoming us into a relationship with God that is not distant and fearful, but rather, loving and deeply personal.
Jesus Christ then asks God to “let this cup pass from me”, according to Matthew 26:39. From this verse, we learn that He is bold in presenting his desires and wishes. We learn that sometimes we hold back not knowing the will of God for us.