The 4 Pillars of Our Faith: Prayer

A Well-Built FaithThis week, I’m featuring short excerpts from my book, A Well-Built Faith, focusing on the 4 pillars of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Here’s a brief look at the fourth pillar: Prayer.

A survey conducted years ago asked people in successful marriages to identify the top ten qualities of a healthy marriage. One might think that sex, given all the attention it is given in our culture, would have been the number one quality. Not so. What was number one? Communication! Relationships last when people communicate with one another.

Prayer is the way we communicate with God. Communication, of course, is a two-way street: speaking and listening. Many of us were taught that prayer is talking to God. This is only part of the dynamic of prayer. If prayer were understood as simply talking to God than Saint Paul’s insistence that we should pray always would mean that we should be talking incessantly to God. Poor God! Imagine having to listen to someone else speak incessantly! Fortunately, communication is a two-way street that involves listening. Without listening, we are missing the voice of God. Later on in this book, we’ll explore how God speaks to us and what it means to hear God’s voice. For now, it is enough to know that prayer is the fourth pillar of our Catholic faith and that, without prayer, we run the risk of collapsing like a card table with only three legs.

About Joe Paprocki 2748 Articles
Joe Paprocki, DMin, is National Consultant for Faith Formation at Loyola Press, where, in addition to his traveling/speaking responsibilities, he works on the development team for faith formation curriculum resources including Finding God: Our Response to God’s Gifts and God’s Gift: Reconciliation and Eucharist. Joe has more than 35 years of experience in ministry and has presented keynotes, presentations, and workshops in more than 100 dioceses in North America. Joe is a frequent presenter at national conferences including the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, the Mid-Atlantic Congress, and the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership. He is the author of numerous books, including the best seller The Catechist’s Toolbox, A Church on the Move, Under the Influence of Jesus, and Called to Be Catholic—a bilingual, foundational supplemental program that helps young people know their faith and grow in their relationship with God. Joe is also the series editor for the Effective Catechetical Leader and blogs about his experiences in faith formation at

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