A lot of people would like to learn to pray all over again. Others are not so sure they ought to pray. They want to know whether prayer will help them and, more than that, whether it will be of any use at all to our world.
This book gives an answer-not in the form of glib instructions, but by introducing the reader to the theology of prayer. It refers again and again to the Bible, especially the Psalms. At the same time, it speaks about personal experiences as well. Gerhard Lohfink writes in inviting, easy-to-read language, answering questions such as:
"To whom do we pray?"
"Does it make any sense to ask for things in prayer?"
"What happens in the Eucharistic Prayer?"
"What is so special about the Psalms?"
"How can I practice Christian meditation?"
This book offers an inviting approach to Christian prayer.
Gerhard Lohfink was professor of New Testament exegesis at the University of Tübingen. Since 1986, he has lived and worked as a theologian for the Catholic Integrated Community. His many books include No Irrelevant Jesus, Jesus of Nazareth, Does God Need the Church?, Is This All There Is?, and The Our Father, all from Liturgical Press.
“In Prayer Takes Us Home, Lohfink delights us with another refreshing exploration of Christian life and teaching—this time with a look at the central practice of prayer. In response to humble and practical questions about Christian prayer, Lohfink engages his life experiences and a wide range of interlocutors, from modern philosophers and great authors to our Jewish, Muslim, and Buddhist brothers and sisters. Yet Prayer Takes Us Home is always grounded in the close readings of scripture and attention to Christian tradition that are characteristic of Lohfink’s writing. What results is a series of meditative essays that are deeply Christian and profoundly relevant to the lives of contemporary people of faith. Lohfink surprises readers with provocative observations and astute insights about this ancient practice and, as a result, opens our minds and spurs us to action.”
Jessica Coblentz, Saint Mary’s College, South Bend, Indiana
"Rarely do you encounter in a spiritual work both brilliance and simplicity, a simultaneous honoring of the mystery and nearness of God, and words that positively contaminate your heart while challenging your mind. In Gerhard Lohfink's Prayer Takes Us Home, this is achieved. In today's anxious, uncertain world, we are challenged to see prayer more fully in ways that raise new questions as to how we can cooperate with God. This book reminded me of the works written by mystic and premier theologian, Karl Rahner. It is not the kind of book that you simply read. No. No. It also needs to be reflected upon, put down, and while the words are fresh in your mind, taken a walk with so you can come home to God in dynamic ways. If you take this book to heart it can be a portal to new joy and peace at a time when we need it most. The opportunity is there for you. I hope you avail yourself of it."
Robert J. Wicks, author, Heartstorming: Creating a Place God Can Call Home, editor, Prayer in the Catholic Tradition
“Combining profound personal knowledge of prayer with a love of Sacred Scripture, Lohfink takes his readers on a journey through the vast wellspring that is Christian prayer. He focuses in particular on the Hebrew scriptures to demonstrate how sacred scripture is the word of the living God and the oldest faith-tradition of the church. In doing so, Lohfink demonstrates his erudition, facility, and reverence for the biblical texts. Throughout, Lohfink balances the particularity and variety of Christian prayer—from Trinitarian theology to the rosary to the eucharistic —prayer with the universality of worship of God and especially a deep respect for Judaism. Ultimately, for Lohfink, the most personal of prayers happens with and for the church and in communion with the body of Christ. This gorgeous book, rich in wisdom, will change the way readers understand and experience prayer.”
Mahri Leonard-Fleckman, Assistant Professor, Religious Studies, College of the Holy Cross