If you can cheer for a sports team, you can praise God

February 17, 2014

Prayers of praise for God aren't just for charismatics, Pope Francis said in a morning homily.

"We find it easy to understand praying to ask God for something and also to thank the Lord," he said Jan. 28. But prayers of praise "don't come so spontaneously."

Pope Francis focused his homily on a line from the day's First Reading, which described David as "dancing before the Lord with abandon."

Pope Francis said he could imagine someone objecting, "but, Father, that's for people in the Renewal in the Spirit, not for all Christians.

"No," he said, "prayers of praise are Christian prayer."

In fact, the pope said, the Psalms are filled with prayers of praise and that's what the Sanctus or Holy, Holy and the Gloria recited at Mass are.

Returning to possible objections, he said he knows some people might think they just can't pray that way.

He said he would counter, "You're able to shout when your team makes a goal, but you cannot sing the Lord's praises?"