Fourth Sunday of Easter – May 7, 2017
By Father Peter Richards
I’m picking up on prayer this week from my March article, particularly The Our Father. Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. First of all, what does hallowed mean? It means something like honored, respected, and considered to be special and holy. So, you might ask, Why are we praying that his name be hallowed? Isn‘t it already? Of course! What we are praying for is that the hallowedness of God‘s name be more widely known. We want everyone to honor and respect God‘s name, and to consider it to be special and holy. How can this happen? Well, God can work directly on people‘s hearts, through the Holy Spirit gently knocking there. Hello. Will you let me in? Will you let me give you a taste of God‘s incredible goodness and love, so you will honor his name? But often God chooses to use ordinary men and women like you and me to help his name be hallowed.
How can we help God‘s name to be hallowed? For one thing, we can use it often, but with love and respect.
Some of you may be asking by now, What is God‘s name, anyway? Good question! God actually has a lot of names, which you probably know if you read the Bible at all, go to Mass on a regular basis, or have gone to Catholic school or childhood faith formation. Here are some of the names of God: In the Old Testament, God revealed his name to Moses in three forms. One was YHWH (pronunciation unknown now). This name may mean something like: “I am” or “I am who am”, that is to say, God is the only self-sufficient Being, who does not depend on anyone or anything else for his existence. God also revealed his name to Moses as THE GOD OF ABRAHAM, OF ISAAC AND OF JACOB and THE GOD OF YOUR FATHERS. Jesus Christ revealed God‘s name as THE FATHER, THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT. This is the name of God we Catholic Christians use most often. We use it to baptize. We use it to make the sign of the cross. We use it to begin and end our prayers. Here are some other names for God from the Bible:
FATHER. YOUR MAKER. MOST HIGH. HOLY ONE. THE FATHER OF LIGHTS. HOLY ONE OF ISRAEL. JESUS CHRIST. THE WORD. THE WORD OF GOD. SON OF GOD. LAMB OF GOD. THE LAMB. PRINCE OF PEACE. MESSIAH. CHRIST. HE WHO WAS AND IS AND IS TO COME. THE FAITHFUL WITNESS. FAITHFUL AND TRUE. THE FIRST-BORN OF THE DEAD. THE RULER OF THE KINGS OF THE EARTH. THE ALPHA AND THE OMEGA. THE FIRST AND THE LAST. THE BEGINNING AND THE END. THE ROOT AND THE OFFSPRING OF DAVID. THE BRIGHT MORNING STAR. THE LORD GOD. THE ALMIGHTY. THE LORD GOD ALMIGHTY. THE LORD OUR GOD THE ALMIGHTY. HOLY SPIRIT. LORD. HUSBAND. BRIDEGROOM. SAVIOR. REDEEMER. JUDGE. THE LORD OF GLORY. THE AMEN. THE HOLY ONE. THE TRUE ONE. THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE. THE GOOD SHEPHERD. LORD OF HOSTS. KING OF KINGS. LORD OF LORDS. LION OF THE TRIBE OF JUDAH. CREATOR. THE HOLY SPIRIT. THE SPIRIT. THE ANCIENT OF DAYS. SOVEREIGN LORD. THE LORD OF ALL THE EARTH. THE KING OF HEAVEN. KING OF THE AGES. Let‘s use God‘s name with love, awe and respect!
God bless you and have a great week! Fr. Richards