Sunday, January 23, 2005

Great prayers from the past

A Prayer of Saint Francis

Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace,
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope; Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
0 Divine Master,
Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled, as to console;
To be understood, as to understand;
To be loved, as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are
born to eternal life. Amen.
Saint Patrick's Breastplate

May the strength of God pilot us.
May the power of God preserve us.
May the wisdom of God instruct us.
May the hand of God protect us.
May the way of God direct us.
May the shield of God defend us,
May the host of God guard us
Against the snares of evil
and the temptations of the world.
May Christ be with us, Christ before us,
Christ in us, Christ over us.
May thy salvation, 0 Lord, be always ours
this day and evermore.
The Prayer of a King

Lord God Almighty,
I pray thee in thy great mercy,
Guide me to thy will, to my soul's need,
better than I can myself;
And shield me against my foes, seen and unseen;
And teach me to do thy will,
that I may inwardly love thee before all things
with a clean mind and a clean body.
For thou art my Maker and my Redeemer,
my help, my comfort, my trust and my hope.
Praise and glory be to thee now, ever and ever, world without end. Amen.
-Alfred of England
Prayer of a German Monk

0 Lord, thou knowest what is best for us;
let this or that be done,
as thou shalt please.
Give what thou wilt, and how much thou wilt....
Deal with me as thou thinkest good,
and as best pleaseth thee.
Set me where thou wilt,
and deal with me in all things just as thou wilt.
Behold, I am thy servant,
prepared for all things;
for I desire not to live unto myself,
but unto thee,
and Oh, that I could do it worthily and perfectly! Amen.
-Thomas A. Kempis
Prayer of an Archbishop of England

0 Lord our God, grant us grace to desire thee with our whole heart;
that so desiring, we may seek and find thee;
and finding thee, we may love thee;
and loving thee, we may hate those sins from which thou hast redeemed us.
-St. Anselm
A Knight's Prayer

My Lord, I am ready on the threshold of this new day to go forth armed with thy power, seeking adventure on the high road, to right wrong,
to overcome evil, to suffer wounds and endure pain if need be,
but in all things to serve thee bravely, faithfully, joyfully that at the end of the day's labor, kneeling for thy blessing, thou mayest find no blot upon my shield. Amen.
-From Chester Cathedral
Prayer of a Spanish Priest

Teach us, good Lord, to serve thee as thou deservest; to give and not to count the cost;
to fight and not to heed the wounds;
to toil and not to seek for rest;
to labor and not to ask for any reward,
save that of knowing we do thy will. Amen.
-Ignatius Loyola
A Young Man's Prayer

How can a young man keep his way pure?
By guarding it according to thy word.
With my whole heart I seek thee;
Let me not wander from thy commandments!
Oh, how I love thy law!
It is my meditation all the day.
Let the words, of my mouth
And the meditation of my heart
Be acceptable in thy sight,
0 Lord, my rock and my redeemer.
Search me, 0 God, and know my heart!
Try me and know my thoughts!
And see if there be any wicked way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting! Amen.
-From The Psalms