Article from Parish Bulletin – The Arrow on July 23, 2017
Salmon Against the Current – Article by Fr. Ed Salmon
A very challenging perspective on prayer has been given to us by Oscar Romero, a man I have come to admire greatly. He said: “The guarantee of one’s prayer is not in saying a lot of words. The guarantee of one’s petition is very easy to know: How do I treat the poor? Because that is where God is.”
We all still pray. And hopefully pray even a bit more than we used to as a result of our call to serve. But are we really men and women of prayer, or men and women who happen to pray? People expect us to pray, and we do. They ask our prayers, and we send them forth. But do we merely pray, or are we men and women of prayer?
The answer is very simple. Romero makes it very clear. He says it all depends on how we treat others. Especially the poorest of the poor. Those who have no hold on us, to whom we owe absolutely nothing, who can give us nothing in return for what we might do.
Thomas of Villanova, long before, had said: “If you want God to hear your prayers, hear the voice of the poor.”
If we hear that voice, and who should hear it more clearly than we who profess to follow Jesus! If we continually try to listen to it and respond as generously as we can, then we are men and women of prayer. And I suggest there can be not greater tribute to our years of living and service than that.
“How do I treat the poor? Because that is where God is.”
Father Ed Salmon