Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Power of Collective Prayer - Vsit to St. Clare's Monastery

I believe in the power of collective prayer.  Pope Francis would often ask people he meet to pray for him, and I think by doing so he doesn't only show his humility but also recognizes the beauty of being able to pray for someone.

Anyway, I've heard about asking for prayers from the nuns of the Sta. Clara Monastery for quite some time now.  I also know that most devotees ask for her intercession for good weather.  I know this may seem petty, but I’ve been praying for good weather during Ben’s swimming playdate for quite some time.  It may not seem like a big deal but it was the first time I’m directly handling an event that is weather dependent.  So, I decided it was a good time to go there. 

Here are some snippets:

The monastery is being run by the nuns of the Catholic Order of  Poor Clares.  It’s the oldest one in the country dating back to the Spanish era when it was originally located at Intramuros.  It is located along Katipunan Avenue, below the flyover, right side if you are coming from Santolan or White Plains.  Slow down and look for the signage so you won’t miss it.

You’ll be greeted by a lovely fountain where some visitors would toss a coin and make a wish.  The challenge is tossing the coin to the higher part of the fountain.

Of course, a beautiful statue of St. Clare is also in the compound.

Then as you go inside the compound, you will see where devotees write their petitions and give their offerings (usually eggs).  Yes, I went there to pray for good weather, but my prayer note contained other things as well.  You drop your prayer requests in a box and your offering is a window that swivels.

There is something beautiful about visiting a church for the first time.  For a monastery that’s located in a busy part of Metro Manila, the mood inside the compound and church is quite solemn.

For me, what is important is recognizing that there is merit in asking help to pray for something.  I don’t know about you, but there is comfort and strength felt when you ask family and  friends to pray for you.  I also remember during our baptismal seminar for the kids, we are asked to name the kids after a saint so they have a patron saint, someone to serve as an example of how a good Christian should be.  (Thus, the names of our kids)

How about you, given the chance, what prayers would you ask your love ones to intercede for you?   

PS. credits to  for the photos of the monastery's gate, chirch and St. Clare Statue

PPS. We were blessed with good weather for Ben's Birthday.  A bit cloudly with only about 10 minutes of very light drizzle. Thank you, Lord :)

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