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The Lord’s Prayer, also known as the Our Father or the Pater Noster, is one of the oldest Catholic prayers that was given to the faithful by Jesus Christ Himself. Christ gave this prayer to His disciples and followers during the Sermon on the Mount as part of His teachings. The Our Father is the most widely known prayer that Catholics all around the globe pray to foster our Faith and grow closer in our relationship to God. 65 years ago, the oldest known written copy of the Our Father was discovered in the sands of Egypt.
“And he said to them: When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation.” Luke 11:2-4 (Douay-Rheims)
In 1952, a groundbreaking discovery was made near Pabau, Egypt, a city nearby to the ancient headquarters of the Pachomian order of monks. An almost perfectly preserved 22 set of papyri were found, one of which containing some of the earliest written records of the Gospels of John and Luke. It contains the Gospel of Luke 3:18-24:53 and the Gospel of John 1-15. Given the name Papyrus 75, the manuscript was written in Greek sometime between the years 175 to 225 A.D. The translations in the manuscript are almost word-for-word identical to our Bibles today, proving the word of God has been faithfully transmitted down throughout the ages to today.
The papyrus was owned by the Bodmer Foundation, after Martin Bodmer who originally bought the papyri in 1952, and stored in Switzerland. In 2007, Papyrus 75 was acquired by the Vatican Library through a joint effort by Frank Hanna and the Solidarity Foundation, where it is stored today known as the Hanna Papyrus.