The Exposition of th

The Exposition of the Our Father
Expositions or commentaries on the Our Father were very common in the Middle Ages as an aid to meditation. For St. Francis the Our Father was a very important prayer, since it was his decision to take God as his Father that led him to dramatically renounce his own inheritance in the piazza of the Episcopal residence at Assisi. St. Francis’ exposition of the Our Father manifests more clearly than any of his writings the clarity and profundity of his grasp of spiritual realities.
According to some sources, St. Francis taught his friars to recite this prayer. 4 Indeed, it is most useful as an aid to recollection. The date of composition is unknown. 5
O Most Holy “Our Father:” Creator, Redeemer, Consoler and Our Savior. 6
Who art in Heaven:” in the Angels and in the Saints; enlightening them unto knowledge, because Thou, Lord, art Light; inflaming them unto love (amor), because Thou, Lord, art Love; indwelling and filling them unto blessedness, because Thou, Lord, art the Highest Good, the Eternal One, from whom is every good, without whom nothing is good.
“Hallowed be Thy Name:” may the knowledge of Thee in us be made bright, so that we may know, what is the breadth (cf. Ep 3:18) of Thy benefactions, 7 the length of Thy promises, the sublimity of Thy Majesty and the depth of Thy judgments.
Thy Kingdom come:” so that Thou may reign in us by grace and makes us come unto Thy Kingdom, where vision of Thee is made manifest, love (dilectio) of Thee made perfect, company with Thee blessed, enjoyment of Thee everlasting.
Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven:” so that we may love Thee with (our) whole heart (cf. Lk 10:27) by thinking of Thee always, with (our) whole soul by desiring Thee always, with (our) whole mind directing unto Thee all our intentions, by seeking Thy honor in all things and with all our strength by expending all our strength and sense of soul and body in submission to Thy love (amor) and not in anything else; and may we love our neighbors even as our very selves by drawing all to Thy love to the extent of (our) strength, by rejoicing over the good things of others just as over our own and by compassionating (them) in evils and by giving offense to no one (cf. 2 Cor 6:3).
Give us this day,” Thy Beloved (dilectio) Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ,
our daily Bread:” to remember and understand and reverence the love (amor), which He had for us, and those things, which He said, did, or endured on our behalf.
And forgive us our debts:” by Thy ineffable mercy, through the virtue of the Passion of Thy Beloved (dilectio) Son and by the merits and intercession of the Blessed Virgin and all Thy elect.
As we also forgive our debtors:” and what we do not fully forgive, Lord make us fully forgive, so that we may truly love (our) enemies for the sake of Thee and intercede devoutly on their behalf with Thee, rendering to none evil for evil (cf. 1 Thes 5:15) and striving in all things to advance unto Thee.”
And lead us not into temptation:” hidden or manifest, sudden or importune. 8
“But deliver us from evil:” past, present, and future. Glory to the Father, …. 9

About Friar Timothy, Franciscan Urban Mission, INC.

Disciple of Jesus Christ with a Progressive Message, Author, Franciscan Friar, Musician, Social Activist, and Urban Missionary View all posts by Friar Timothy, Franciscan Urban Mission, INC.

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