So if someone prays to Jesus, does that mean he needs to pray it forward to get the request past the big guy?
I know a lot of Christians don't believe in intercessory prayer, as in the way Catholics pray to various saints, who then supposedly pass the prayer on to god, but these same Christians will basically end all their prayers with "in Jesus' name". But is Jesus the highest authority in this case? Jesus incarnate might have prayed to God the Father, but now that he is back in heaven, is his will equal to God's?
So I haven't gone through the catechisms regarding intercessory prayer, but from what I (hazily) remember:
If you go Catholic (or at least certain varieties/locations thereof), you get a sort of hierarchy of prayer authority that is subdivided into specialized areas of expertise or responsibility. I think
the idea was that you prayed to the right entity, and, if you prayed correctly, god would use that entity as the tool to answer the prayer. There's the whole patron saint concept - for example, if I lost my keys, I would pray to St. Anthony (patron saint of lost stuffs or somesuch), and then god would help St. Anthony guide you to your keys because...that...would...work...more...better with St. Anthony on the case. If you were making a sufficiently needy prayer, you would have to pray to The Virgin MaryTM
because...something...compassion...Jesus listens to her...god works in mysterious ways.
Surprisingly, I don't really recall a whole lot of praying directly to Jesus
. Mostly the prayers were supposed to be to god, The Virgin MaryTM
, or the appointed saint closest to the theme of your prayer.
So you basically pray to the right (not-at-all-deity-like-as-it-is-a-monotheistic-religion) saint or other revered entity and it's not so much the saint or whatever has greater
authority but is the right entity to implore god's will through. St. Christopher is the authority on wandering around buying touristy crap, St. Anthony is the authority on losing your junk, and St. Bastard is the authority on biscuits.
Catholic heaven is basically a bureaucratic mess of TPS reports and an ill-defined mission statement.