CIC 280 Creation is the foundation of “all God’s saving plans,” the “beginning of the history of salvation”1 that culminates in Christ. Conversely, the mystery of Christ casts conclusive light on the mystery of creation and reveals the end for which “in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”: from the beginning, God envisaged the glory of the new creation in Christ.2

CIC 671 Though already present in his Church, Christ’s reign is nevertheless yet to be fulfilled “with power and great glory” by the King’s return to earth.3 This reign is still under attack by the evil powers, even though they have been defeated definitively by Christ’s Passover.4 Until everything is subject to him, “until there be realized new heavens and a new earth in which justice dwells, the pilgrim Church, in her sacraments and institutions, which belong to this present age, carries the mark of this world which will pass, and she herself takes her place among the creatures which groan and travail yet and await the revelation of the sons of God.”5 That is why Christians pray, above all in the Eucharist, to hasten Christ’s return by saying to him:6 Marana tha! “Our Lord, come!”7

CIC 735 He, then, gives us the “pledge” or “first fruits” of our inheritance: the very life of the Holy Trinity, which is to love as “God [has] loved us.”8 This love (the “charity” of 1 Cor 13) is the source of the new life in Christ, made possible because we have received “power” from the Holy Spirit.9

CIC 741 “The Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes with sighs too deep for words.”10 The Holy Spirit, the artisan of God’s works, is the master of prayer. (This will be the topic of Part Four.)

CIC 1046 For the cosmos, Revelation affirms the profound common destiny of the material world and man:
For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. .. in hope because the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay. .. We know that the whole creation has been groaning in travail together until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.11

CIC 2543 “But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from law, although the law and the prophets bear witness to it, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe.”12 Henceforth, Christ’s faithful “have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires”; they are led by the Spirit and follow the desires of the Spirit.13

CIC 2559 “Prayer is the raising of one’s mind and heart to God or the requesting of good things from God.”14 But when we pray, do we speak from the height of our pride and will, or “out of the depths” of a humble and contrite heart?15 He who humbles himself will be exalted;16 humility is the foundation of prayer, Only when we humbly acknowledge that “we do not know how to pray as we ought,”17 are we ready to receive freely the gift of prayer. “Man is a beggar before God.”18

CIC 2630 The New Testament contains scarcely any prayers of lamentation, so frequent in the Old Testament. In the risen Christ the Church’s petition is buoyed by hope, even if we still wait in a state of expectation and must be converted anew every day. Christian petition, what St. Paul calls {“groaning,” arises from another depth, that of creation “in labor pains” and that of ourselves “as we wait for the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved.”19 In the end, however, “with sighs too deep for words” the Holy Spirit “helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words.”20

CIC 2634 Intercession is a prayer of petition which leads us to pray as Jesus did. He is the one intercessor with the Father on behalf of all men, especially sinners.21 He is “able for all time to save those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.”22 The Holy Spirit “himself intercedes for us. .. and intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.”23

CIC 2736 Are we convinced that “we do not know how to pray as we ought”?24 Are we asking God for “what is good for us”? Our Father knows what we need before we ask him,25 but he awaits our petition because the dignity of his children lies in their freedom. We must pray, then, with his Spirit of freedom, to be able truly to know what he wants.26

CIC 2766 But Jesus does not give us a formula to repeat mechanically.27 As in every vocal prayer, it is through the Word of God that the Holy Spirit teaches the children of God to pray to their Father. Jesus not only gives us the words of our filial prayer; at the same time he gives us the Spirit by whom these words become in us “spirit and life.”28 Even more, the proof and possibility of our filial prayer is that the Father “sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, ‘Abba! Father!’”29 Since our prayer sets forth our desires before God, it is again the Father, “he who searches the hearts of men,” who “knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.”30 The prayer to Our Father is inserted into the mysterious mission of the Son and of the Spirit.

1 GCD 51.
2 Gen 1:1; cf. Rom 8:18-23.
3 Lk 21:27; cf. Mt 25:31.
4 Cf. 2 Th 2:7.
5 LG 48 # 3; cf. 2 Pt 3:13; Rom 8:19-22; I Cor 15:28.
6 Cf. I Cor 11:26; 2 Pt 3:11-12.
7 1 Cor 16:22; Rev 22:17,20.
8 1 Jn 4: 12; cf. Rom 8:23; 2 Cor 1:21.
9 Acts 1:8; cf. 1 Cor 13.
10 Rom 8:26.
11 Rom 8:19-23.
12 Rom 3:21-22.
13 Gal 5:24; cf. Rom 8:14, 27.
14 St. John Damascene, Defide orth. 3, 24: PG 94,1089C.
15 Ps 130:1.
16 Cf. Lk 18:9-14.
17 Rom 8:26.
18 St. Augustine, Sermo 56, 6, 9: PL 38, 381.
19 Rom 8:22-24.
20 Rom 8:26.
21 Cf. Rom 8:34; 1 Jn 2:1; 1 Tim 2:5-8.
22 Heb 7:25.
23 Rom 8:26-27.
24 Rom 8:26.
25 Cf. Mt 6:8.
26 Cf. Rom 8:27.
27 Cf. Mt 6:7; 1 Kings 18:26-29.
28 Jn 6:63.
29 Gal 4:6.
30 Rom 8:27.