How to start praying again


#1

I don’t know what to do.

I love Catholicism. Prayer has gotten me through everything. My wife, however, who was raised atheist but was originally open to religion, now hates God because she has suffered many tragedies and is suicidal (we are seeing professional help), but she is blaming God for injustice.

“Our relationship would be easier if you were an atheist,” she says. “Because if your God exists, I hate him. What has he done for me other than make me suffer?” We have occasionally argued heatedly over this.

Ironically, it is only because I pray and ask God for strength that I can support my wife. Sadly, my wife used to reach out to me for Bible stories early in her tragedy, for hope, but that was long ago.

She tries to be tolerant of my need to go to Mass and confession. She likes Catholic people, just not the theology behind it.

I know you can’t help me much with the situation. But are there any prayers I can say (privately) or saints to whom I can pray for help? I admit that I have not said my morning or evening prayers for years. I would like to start again, and maybe you can help me on how I can start praying again? Thank you.


#2

I’m sure others here will know better than I what saints you should ask to pray for you and your wife, but maybe this will help, too:

When I’m going through a challenging time, I find reading the Psalms and using them to guide me in my prayers helps me, personally. Each one is essentially a prayer. David went through some tough times and was real with God, writing things like, “My God, my God, who have you forsaken me?” But he always ended on a hopeful note. Prayer can be like that - starting with a stressful, “Why?” but ending with peaceful confidence in him and words to the effect, “But I know you’ll work it all out for our good.” There’s peace found in being reminded of that! Right?


#3

Begin with the prayer our Savior gave us, the Our Father.

Maybe add in Night Prayers from the Liturgy of the Hours (you can buy a small book or an app for your phone).

I’d also suggest reading some articles by former atheists over at StrangeNotions.com


#4

I agree with this. The Penny Cathecism is a good source for various prayers as well and they are inexpensive.


#5

For me the easiest way to renew prayer convictions is a good confession.

I love St. John of the Cross. The suffering he bore is astounding. And he did so with great joy.

I do not intend to put words in your mouth, BUT St. Gangolf is the patron saint of unhappily married husbands. (Please don’t be offended at this suggestion). I don’t have a devotion to him myself, single. He is a patron of an old church in Trier Germany which I visited this summer. That’s the only reason I know this. Look him up if you wish maybe something will resonate.

St. Monica, who’s memorial was yesterday, is the patroness of wayward sons and husbands but she could be a source of inspiration. She cried and prayed for St. Augustine, who’s memorial is today. He became a bishop and one of the most important theologians of all time.

Edited to give St. Augustine his title.


#6

Another very easy to read book is Fr Dubay’s “The Prayer Primer”.


#7

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