"Seeking Union with God" Online Spiritual Formation Program
Lesson #1: Discovering Our Ultimate Purpose
Lesson #1 Feedback
Lesson #2: Our Ultimate Decision
Lesson #2 Feedback
Lesson #3: An Introduction to Prayer
Lesson #3 Feedback
Lesson #4: Meditation
Lesson #4 Feedback
Lesson #5: Problems and Progress in Prayer
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Lesson #6: Growing in Holiness and Virtue
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Lesson #7: Renewing Our Mind
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Lesson #8: Your Own Spiritual Rule of Life
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Lesson #9: Stages of the Spiritual Life
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Lesson #10: The Mass and Sacraments
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Lesson #11: Loving God and Neighbor
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Lesson #12: Discernment
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End of Course

Class Assignment and Feedback for
Lesson #5:
Problems and Progress in Prayer


Do I experience any problems with prayer and what are they? What did I learn that might help from reading the assignments?

Write down one or more things that stood out to you from what you've learned about prayer in this lesson that you would like to share with others in the class. Please enter your lesson feedback below.

Lesson Feedback and Comments page 10 of 10
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Lydia Nairobi Kenya
Posted 203 days ago
I usually experience the problem of procrastinating time set for prayer, my mind scattered, dozing and to silence self. I have learnt that prayer involves the whole person and it not so much of thinking but loving much. It requires my promise and perseverance and I have been attending to distractions but with the help that I can write wcomes and attend it later has been of great help to me. I have learnt that I need faith to progress in prayer and sincerity. The quotations from St. Teresa of Avilla on aridity were so helpful to me I have been thinking that iam a great sinner when I go through this moment. About suffering in prayer it has changed my attitude to seek God patiently in prayer even when I suffer. Iam striving on the point that I must make a transition from meditation to contemplation. I find it easy said than practising it. I need intervention.
Rebecca; New Mexico, US
Posted 213 days ago
Something I was taught or read long ago was when the distractions crowd in (what I need to do, what I could be doing, people, things, etc) I should put them gently aside and go back to the prayer or meditation. Sometimes I need to do this every other second it seems. But still I work on it. Calming my mind can sometimes be very difficult for me. But I must persevere. Jesus tells us to pray without ceasing and not to grow weary.
Bill - Thousand Oaks, CA, USA
Posted 219 days ago
My problem is perseverance, especially as it relates to contemplation. So now, I know it is a gift from God and I can set aside all the techniques I've tried over the years and wait and keep the conversation going. I don't feel it's the end of the road. I see St Teresa of Avila cites a sister who just kept on plugging away with vocal prayer and did just fine. My serch started with the "Cloud of the Unknowing", and I tried saying the Lord's name a zillion times...didn't get anywhere. then tried the "Way of the Pilgrim" with the Jesus Prayer...loved it but still no reward. Yet, now I think of those times when anxiety seems to overcome me and I turn to God and always have received this great sense of peace. this has happened most often the night before I will go into one of the 34 California men's prisons to participate/lead Ignatian retreats with men most often living life sentences. That for me has been a "sharing between friends" and has enabled me to continue in this ministry for the past te years, even though I am ancient...80.
Patricia, Wayne, NJ, USA
Posted 333 days ago
I have truly reflected on the inspirational readings in this lesson, ad how can anyone not reflect deeply on teachings of St. Teresa of Avala. What particularly stands out for me is that prayer is seeking union with God and the search for that union can be arduous, humbling,and joyful. The life of prayer -- following Jesus on the road in the words of Father Lane -- demands our attention lest we miss something God whispers to us. It is humbling to think that this Great Love, who is God, would wait for us to look at Him, to come to Him with our meager praise, thanksgiving, and petition. In his homily Father Lane notes that when we leave our time of intimate prayer something is different in us. I think that something is a joyful peace that is behond our understanding.
Jean, Blairstown Iowa Benton
Posted 449 days ago
I learned to stay persistant in prayer, open to contemplative experiences but pretty much in the beginning stages of a true deeper relationship. Even though divorced, I feel forgiven by God. I am confused often by the gender implications of reading the Bible. the historical context was so influential is the interpretations made by early male leaders.
I have been working on "slowing down" my thoughts and trying to meditate as I pray,,,try to keep my mind focused/relevant to the here and now. A few years ago, I read about "eight Deadly Sins" Boland OP and having had an extensive psychiatric nursing career, I have seen much suffering due to severe mental issues. It occurs to me that the deadly sins are the "emotions" that are elusive and that lead us to severe behaviors that are very sinful....motivations differ and that is a key to determining evil.
intentionality is so difficult to grasp as I try to live day to day in a world I am in, and also to allow my self to ponder being more like Jesus and God through the Holy Spirit.
Matthew Kelly and Dynamic Catholic are very meaningful reading to me, they lift me and give me hope.
I am angry at the church, and the abuses sexually and financially.
I do not want to leave the dark side of the real world as that is where I think so many suffer and become addicted etc.
competitive society and Christ's life are so very different.
DJ, Colorado USA
Posted 477 days ago
Sometimes I just don't feel like praying. I know that is ungratefulness but I justify it by saying to myself that I am doing God's work just by doing my job and daily chores. I want to work on praying to God as if he is a friend and not a judge of my character.
Emma - Kissimmee FL
Posted 772 days ago
I have never felt comfortable petition prayers because God knows what we need. From what I am learning in these lessons, I think that instead of petitions, I should have "conversations" with God about what I care about. Presenting my worries to God and letting go, trusting that whatever happens is for good.

What stood out for me about prayer in this lesson is that praying in Jesus' name is not saying that we are praying in His name but rather that we pray aligned with Christ, who is love and mercy.
Lori in Puerto Octay,Chile
Posted 1036 days ago
I have struggled with distraction in prayer always but I don't give up and just drag my mind back to my prayers. I really like St. Teresa of Avila's idea and I have been searching for large colorful pictures of the mysteries of the rosary. When I look at them it is like a feast for my eyes and I can ponder and meditate better on the mystery or even visualize myself being there. It keeps me focused. You could use a book or calendar pictures but I also found a website - catholic tradition.org which has lots of beautiful artwork to enjoy including all the mysteries of the rosary.
Paul. Wakefield,RI,USA
Posted 1122 days ago
Prayer has become an important part of my daily life. I have experienced dry prayer occasionally and I have learned patience and the ability to just be peaceful with God. I believe that our quiet time with God is the most fulfilling and beneficial ways to become closer to his goals and plans for our journey here in the secular world.
Kathleen Mansfield, MA. USA
Posted 1150 days ago
I often feel nothing in prayer and this makes me want to give up. I now know giving up is not an option. Just keep loving God with the will and telling Him you are seeking His will above all else. Then just keep praying with faith and hope, knowing He is there listening even though we don't feel Him present.


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