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Frequently Asked Questions

Q. 1. In Matthew 6:7, Jesus tells us not to pray in repetious words. How does that relate to the Rosary prayers that are repetitious? Such opposes the teachings of Jesus.

A. 1. When Catholics interpret the Holy Bible, they do not take a single verse and then define what it means. The verse is taken in context of the paragraph in which it is found, over and above other teachings found in the Bible that relate to that particular subject. To properly interpret Matthew 6:7, it is necessary to see what it says in Matthew 6:5-15.

I quote that passage:

5 “And whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, so that they may be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. 6 But whenever you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you."

7 “When you are praying, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think that they will be heard because of their many words. 8 Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him."

9 “Pray then in this way:
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
10 Your kingdom come.
Your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And do not bring us to the time of trial,
but rescue us from the evil one."

14 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you; 15 but if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."

Jesus' teaching is not a criticism of public prayer. It is a criticism of the Gentiles who stood on the street corners to repeatedly prayed meaningless phrases so they could get the attention of the others regarding their false piety. Jesus said, when you pray, pray from the heart, talking to God as you would talk to another person. And He gave us the Lord's Prayer as an example of such a way to pray.

Jesus's teaching was not a condemnation of prayers such as the Rosary or Catholic Litanies. It was a condemnation of the hypocrites who prayed meaningless words. Their intent was not to pray to God but rather to get the attention of others.

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