CCC 672 Before his Ascension Christ affirmed that the hour had not yet come for the glorious establishment of the messianic kingdom awaited by Israel1 which, according to the prophets, was to bring all men the definitive order of justice, love and peace.2 According to the Lord, the present time is the time of the Spirit and of witness, but also a time still marked by “distress” and the trial of evil which does not spare the Church3 and ushers in the struggles of the last days. It is a time of waiting and watching.4
CCC 1156 “The musical tradition of the universal Church is a treasure of inestimable value, greater even than that of any other art. The main reason for this pre-eminence is that, as a combination of sacred music and words, it forms a necessary or integral part of solemn liturgy.”5 The composition and singing of inspired psalms, often accompanied by musical instruments, were already closely linked to the liturgical celebrations of the Old Covenant. The Church continues and develops this tradition: “Address. .. one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all your heart.” “He who sings prays twice.”6
CCC 1454 The reception of this sacrament ought to be prepared for by an examination of conscience made in the light of the Word of God. The passages best suited to this can be found in the Ten Commandments, the moral catechesis of the Gospels and the apostolic letters, such as the Sermon on the Mount and the apostolic teachings.7
CCC 2633 When we share in God’s saving love, we understand that every need can become the object of petition. Christ, who assumed all things in order to redeem all things, is glorified by what we ask the Father in his name.8 It is with this confidence that St. James and St. Paul exhort us to pray at all times.9
CCC 2641 “[Address] one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all your heart.”10 Like the inspired writers of the New Testament, the first Christian communities read the Book of Psalms in a new way, singing in it the mystery of Christ. In the newness of the Spirit, they also composed hymns and canticles in the light of the unheard-of event that God accomplished in his Son: his Incarnation, his death which conquered death, his Resurrection, and Ascension to the right hand of the Father.11 Doxology, the praise of God, arises from this “marvelous work” of the whole economy of salvation.12
CCC 2826 By prayer we can discern “what is the will of God” and obtain the endurance to do it.13 Jesus teaches us that one enters the kingdom of heaven not by speaking words, but by doing “the will of my Father in heaven.”14
1 Cf. Acts 1:6-7.
2 Cf. Is 11:1-9.
3 Cf. Acts 1:8; I Cor 7:26; Eph 5:16; I Pt 4:17.
4 Cf. Mt 25:1, 13; Mk 13:33-37; I Jn 2:18; 4:3; I Tim 4:1.
5 SC 112.
6 Eph 5:19; St. Augustine, En. in Ps. 72,1: PL 36, 914; cf. Col 3:16.
7 Cf. Mt 5-7; Rom 12-15; 1 Cor 12-13; Gal 5; Eph 4-6; etc.
8 Cf. Jn 14:13.
9 Cf. Jas 1:5-8; Eph 5:20; Phil 4:6-7; Col 3:16-17; 1 Thess 5:17-18.
10 Eph 5:19; Col 3:16.
11 Cf. Phil 2:6-11; Col 1:15-20; Eph 5:14; 1 Tim 3:16; 6:15-16; 2 Tim 2:11-13.
12 Cf. Eph 1:3-14; Rom 16:25-27; Eph 3:20-21; Jude 24-25.
13 Rom 12:2; Cf. Eph 5:17; Cf. Heb 10:36.
14 Mt 7:21.