A Manual of Prayers for the Use of the Catholic Laity/Instructions for Hearing Mass

Instructions for Hearing Mass.


FROM the beginning of the world the servants of God were always accustomed to offer Sacrifice to Him, by way of acknowledging His sovereignty and paying their homage to Him; and in all ancient religions, true or false, this worship of Sacrifice was always regarded as a most solemn act of religion, due to the Deity worshipped.

In the law of nature, and in the law of Moses, there was a great variety of Sacrifices: some bloody, in which the victim was slain; others unbloody. Some were called Holocausts, or whole burnt-offerings, in which the whole host or victim was consumed in fire upon God's altar, for His honor and glory; others were called Sin-offerings, which were offered for sins; others were offerings of Thanksgivings; others were pacific or Peace-offerings, which were offered for obtaining favors of God—the word "peace" in the Scripture style signifying all manner of good and prosperity.

All these Sacrifices of the law of nature, and of the law of Moses, were of themselves but weak and needy elements (Gal. iv. 9), and only figures of a Sacrifice to come, viz., that of Jesus Christ; in consideration of which Sacrifice only, and of the faith of the offerers, by which they believed in the Redeemer to come, those ancient Sacrifices were then accepted by the Divine Majesty, when they were accompanied with the inward sacrifice of the heart; but not for any intrinsic worth or dignity of the things offered, for no other blood but the Blood of Christ could wash away sins. Hence, St. Paul says (Heb. x. 5), quoting from the 39th Psalm: Sacrifice and oblation Thou wouldst not have: but Thou hast fitted to Me a Body. This gives us to understand that, by reason of the insufficiency of the Sacrifices of the old law, Christ Himself would come to be our Sacrifice, and would offer up His own Body and Blood for us.

Accordingly, our Saviour Jesus Christ, at the time appointed by His Father, having taken flesh for us, was pleased to offer Himself a Sacrifice for us, dying upon the Cross for the sins of the whole world. By this one offering we were completely redeemed, inasmuch as our ransom was paid, and all mercy, grace, and salvation were purchased for us. Neither can there now be any need of His dying any more, or purchasing any other graces for us than those for which He has already paid the price of His Blood.

Nevertheless, for the daily application of this one eternal Redemption to our souls, and that the mercy, grace, and salvation which He has purchased for us may be actually communicated to us, He not only continually appears in our behalf in the Sanctuary of Heaven, there representing and offering to His Father His Passion and Death for us, but He has also instituted the Blessed Eucharist, the night before His Passion, in which He bequeathed us His Body and Blood, under the sacramental veils, not only to be received by us as a Sacrament, for the food and nourishment of our souls, but also (mystically delivered) to be offered and presented by His ministers to His Father as a Sacrifice: not by way of a new death, but by way of a standing Memorial of His death; a daily celebrating and representing of His death to God, and an applying to our souls of the fruits thereof.

This Eucharistic Sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ, daily offered under the forms of bread and wine, in remembrance of His Passion, is what we call the Mass. This is the solemn Liturgy of the Catholic Church. This is that pure Offering which is made to God in every place among the Gentiles, according to the prophecy of Malachi (i. 10, 11). By this, Christ is a Priest for ever according to the order of Melchisedech (Psalm 109), whose Sacrifice was bread and wine (Gen. xv.)

This Sacrifice of the Mass is the same in substance with that which Christ offered for us upon the Cross; because both the Victim offered, and the Priest or principal Offerer, is the same Jesus Christ. The difference is only in the manner of the offering; because upon the Cross our Saviour offered Himself in such a manner as really to shed His Blood and die for us; whereas now He does not really shed His Blood, or die. And therefore this is called an unbloody Sacrifice; and that of the Cross a bloody Sacrifice.

By virtue of this essential sameness, the Sacrifice of the Mass completely answers all the different ends of Sacrifice, and that in a way infinitely more effective than any of the ancient Sacrifices. Christ is here both Priest and Victim, representing in person and offering up His Passion and Death to His Father.

This Sacrifice of the Mass is offered up to God, in the Catholic Church, first as a daily remembrance of the Passion of Christ: This do for the commemoration of Me (1 Cor. xi. 24); secondly, as a most solemn worship of the Divine Majesty; thirdly, as a most acceptable thanksgiving to God, from whence it has the name of Eucharist; fourthly, as a most powerful means to move God to show mercy to us in the forgiveness of our sins, for which reason we call it propitiatory; and, lastly, as a most effectual way to obtain of God all that we need, coming to Him, as we here do, with Christ and through Christ.

For these ends both Priest and people ought to offer up the Sacrifice of the Mass—the Priest, as Christ's minister and in His person; and the people, by the hands of the Priest; and both the one and the other by the hands of the Great High-Priest Jesus Christ. And with this offering of Christ, both the one and the other should make a total offering of themselves also by His hands and in union with Him.


ALTHOUGH the homage which man owes to his Creator so essentially consists in the interior dispositions of the soul that without these all outward worship is unprofitable and vain, yet the constitution of our nature is such as to require external signs and ceremonies which may operate through the medium of the bodily senses upon our souls, and elevate them to God. To this end are directed all the Ceremonies of the Church, and it is the Christian's duty to learn how to use them accordingly. Hence—

1. The custom of placing a vessel containing blessed or Holy Water at the entrance of the Church has been handed down to us from the Apostolic age. Into this vessel the faithful dip the fingers of the right hand, and make upon themselves the Sign of the Cross, repeating at the same time the invocation of the Ever-blessed Trinity. As water denotes purity and innocence, by using it on entering a place of worship we are admonished with what purity of heart and mind we should appear in the presence of our Maker.

2. The Sign of the Cross, which we make upon ourselves in taking holy water, as well as on many other occasions, is a sign or ceremony in which, with St. Paul (Gal. vi. 14), we should place our greatest happiness and glory, as being a striking memorial of the sufferings and death of our Redeemer—that mystery whence are derived all our hopes for mercy, grace, and salvation. By the words that accompany this ceremony we are no less forcibly reminded that God whom we serve, although One in nature, exists in Three Persons really distinct from each other.

3. The first object that arrests the Christian's notice on entering a Church is the Altar with its Tabernacle and Crucifix. The Altar is the place of Sacrifice—another Calvary, as it were—whereon is celebrated, as Christ ordained, the memorial of His Passion and Death by the pure and unbloody Sacrifice of His Body and Blood. Upon the Altar we always see a Crucifix, or image of our Saviour upon the Cross; that as the Mass is said in remembrance of Christ's Passion and Death, both Priest and people may have before their eyes during this Sacrifice the image which puts them in mind of those Mysteries. The Tabernacle contains the Blessed Sacrament. It is to Jesus Christ, therefore, truly present within the Tabernacle, that we bend the knee in homage and adoration when we enter or depart from the Church.

4. As the Mass represents the Passion of Christ, and the Priest officiates in His person, so the Vestments in which he officiates represent those in which Christ was ignominiously clothed at the time of His Passion. Thus, the Amice represents the cloth with which the Jews muffled our Saviour's Face when at every blow they bade Him prophesy who it was that struck Him. The Alb represents the white garment with which He was vested by Herod. The Girdle, Maniple, and Stole represent the cords and bands with which He was bound in the different stages of His Passion. The Chasuble, or outward Vestment, represents the purple garment with which He was clothed as a mock King; upon this is embroidered a Cross, to represent that which Christ bore upon His sacred shoulders. Lastly, the Priest's Tonsure, which is worn in all Catholic countries, is to represent the crown of thorns which our Saviour wore.

Moreover, as in the old law the Priests who were wont to officiate in the sacred functions had, by the appointment of God, Vestments assigned for that purpose—as well for the greater decency and solemnity of the Divine worship as to signify the virtues which God required of His ministers—so it was proper that in the Church of the New Testament Christ's ministers should in their sacred functions be distinguished in like manner from the laity by their sacred Vestments; which might also represent the virtues which God requires in them. Thus, the Amice represents divine Hope, which St. Paul calls the helmet of salvation; the Alb, Innocence of life; the Girdle, Purity and Chastity; the Maniple, Patience in enduring the labors of this mortal life; the Stole, the sweet Yoke of Christ, to be borne in this life in order to attain a happy immortality; the Chasuble, which covers all the rest, the virtue of Charity, which, as St. Peter tells us, covereth a multitude of sins.

In these Vestments the Church uses five colors, z., White, on the Feasts of our Lord, of the Blessed Virgin, of the Angels, and of the Saints who were not martyrs, and on the Sundays in Eastertide; Red, on the Feasts of Pentecost, of the Finding and Exaltation of the Cross, and of the Apostles and Martyrs; Violet, in the penitential seasons of Advent and Lent, and upon Vigils and Ember-days; Green, on most other Sundays and ordinary days throughout the year; and Black, on Good Friday, and in Masses for the Dead.

5. There are always Lighted Candles upon the Altar during Mass, as well to honor the victory and triumph of our great King by these lights, which are tokens of our joy and of His Glory, as to denote the light of Faith, without which it is impossible to please Him.

6. A small Bell is occasionally rung. This is done to give notice of certain more solemn parts of the Sacrifice; to recall the wandering mind from distraction; and to excite all to greater fervor and devotion.

7. Incense is used at Solemn Mass. It is symbolical of Prayer, according to the saying of the Psalmist: Let my prayer, O Lord, be directed as incense in Thy sight (Ps. cxl. 2).


THERE are various methods of profitably hearing Mass. One method is, to follow the Priest in the Ordinary of the Mass as contained in the Missal; joining with him, as far as the laity may, in the very words of the service, and uniting our intention with him in what he does as Priest for the people. To enable all persons, even those who do not understand Latin, to follow the service, translations of the Ordinary and Canon of the Mass have been made into almost all languages, and circulated by authority. Another method is to accompany the Priest through the different parts of the service with appropriate devotions, similar to those he is using and directed to the same general ends, uniting our intention with his, but not using or not confining ourselves to the words of the Ordinary. A third method is to apply the service to the purpose of meditation on the Life or Passion of our Lord, or on any other appropriate subject. Whatever be the method followed, our first care should be to recollect ourselves, by calling home our wandering thoughts, and taking them off from all other concerns. We should humble ourselves profoundly in the presence of God, in whose Temple we are; and represent to ourselves, by a lively Faith, the dread majesty of God, and humbly beg His mercy and grace, that we may participate in this Holy Sacrifice in a worthy and becoming manner.


COME, Holy Ghost, fill the hearts of Thy faithful, and kindle in them the fire of Thy love.

V. Send forth Thy Spirit, and they shall be created.

R. And Thou shalt renew the face of the earth.

Let us pray.

O GOD, who by the light of Thy Holy Spirit didst teach the hearts of Thy faithful: grant us by the same Spirit to have a right judgment in all things, and evermore to rejoice in His holy comfort. Through Christ, our Lord. Amen.

LOOK down, O Lord, from Thy Sanctuary, and from heaven, Thy dwelling-place, and behold this holy Victim which our great High-Priest, Thy holy Child, the Lord Jesus, offers up to Thee for the sins of His brethren; and let not Thy wrath be kindled because of the multitude of our transgressions. Behold, the voice of the Blood of Jesus our Brother calls to Thee from the Cross. Give ear, O Lord; be appeased, O Lord; hearken, and tarry not, for Thine own sake, O my God; because Thy name is called upon in behalf of this city and of Thy people; but deal with us according to Thy great mercy. Amen.

That Thou vouchsafe to defend, pacify, keep, preserve, and bless this city: we beseech Thee to hear us.(i)



The Preparation, by Acts of Humility, Praise, Faith, etc.

Prayer at the beginning of Mass, while the Priest says the Judica me, Deus, etc.

O ALMIGHTY Lord of Heaven and earth, behold I, a wretched sinner, presume to appear before Thee this day, to offer up unto Thee, by the hands of our High-Priest, Jesus Christ, Thy Son, the Sacrifice of His Body and Blood, in union with that Sacrifice which He offered to Thee upon the Cross: first, for Thine own honor, praise, adoration, and glory; secondly, in remembrance of His Passion and Death; thirdly, in thanksgiving for all Thy blessings bestowed upon Thy whole Church, whether triumphant in heaven or militant on earth, and especially for those bestowed upon me, the most unworthy of all; fourthly, for obtaining pardon and remission of all my sins, and of those of all others, whether living or dead, for whom I ought to pray (here mention their names); and, lastly, for obtaining all graces and blessings both for myself and for Thy whole Church (here mention your particular requests). Oh, be Thou pleased to assist me by Thy grace, that I may behave myself this day as I ought to do in Thy divine Presence, and that I may so commemorate the Passion and Death of Thy Son as to partake most plentifully of the fruits thereof. Through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

At the Confiteor.

O BLESSED Trinity, one God, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, prostrate in spirit before Thee, I here confess, in the sight of the whole court of heaven and of all Thy faithful, my innumerable treasons against Thy divine majesty. I have sinned, O Lord, I have sinned; I have grievously offended Thee through the whole course of my life, in thought, word, and deed; and therefore am unworthy to lift mine eyes to heaven, or so nmch as to utter Thy sacred name. How much more am I unworthy to appear here in Thy Sanctuary, and to mingle among Thine Angels at these heavenly Mysteries, which require so much purity, because Jesus Christ Himself is here in person, both Priest and Victim! But, O my God, Thy mercies are above all Thy works, and Thou wilt not despise a contrite and humble heart: and therefore I here venture to come into Thy Temple, and with the poor publican, and, as I hope, with the same penitential spirit, I strike my breast and say: God be merciful to me, a sinner. And I humbly hope to find this mercy which I crave, through that Passion and Death which are here celebrated. O Fountain of Mercy, grant this mercy to me and to all poor sinners. Amen.

When the Priest ascends the steps of the Altar.

TAKE away from us our iniquities, we beseech Thee, O Lord; that we may be worthy to enter with pure minds into the Holy of Holies. Through Christ, our Lord. Amen.

At the Introit.

GRANT, O Lord, that we may be truly prepared for offering this great Sacrifice unto Thee this day; and because our sins alone can render us displeasing to Thee, therefore we cry aloud to Thee for mercy.

At the Kyrie Eleison.

Either repeat with the Priest, or say:

Have mercy on me. O Lord, and forgive me all my sins.

Have mercy on me, O Lord, have mercy on me.

The Gloria in Excelsis, or Greater Doxology.

Repeat this with the Priest. p. 119.

At the Collects.

O ALMIGHTY and Eternal God, we humbly beseech Thee to mercifully hear the prayers here offered unto Thee by Thy servant in the name of Thy whole Church, and in behalf of us Thy people. Accept them, to the honor of Thy name, and the good of our souls; and grant to us all mercy, grace, and salvation. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

(Or, on a Saint's Day.)

Grant, we beseech Thee, Almighty God, that the examples of Thy Saints may effectually move us to reform our lives; that while we celebrate their festivals, we may also imitate their actions. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

At the Epistle.

THOU hast vouchsafed, O Lord, to teach us Thy sacred truths by the Prophets and Apostles: oh, grant that we may so improve by their doctrine and examples in the love of Thy holy name, and of Thy holy law, that we may show forth by our lives whose disciples we are; that we may no longer follow the corrupt inclinations of flesh and blood, but master all our passions; that we may be ever directed by Thy light, and strengthened by Thy grace, to walk in the way of Thy commandments, and to serve Thee with clean hearts. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

At the Gradual,

HOW admirable, O Lord, is Thy name, in the whole earth! I will bless Thee, O Lord, at all times; Thy praise shall be always in my mouth. Be Thou my God and Protector for ever: I will put my whole trust in Thee; oh, let me never be confounded.

At the Gospel.

MAYEST Thou be ever adored and praised, O Lord, who, not content to instruct and inform us by Thy Prophets and Apostles, hast even vouchsafed to speak to us by Thine Only Son our Saviour Jesus Christ; commanding us by a voice from heaven to hear Him: grant us, O merciful God, the grace to profit by His divine and heavenly doctrine. All that is written of Thee, O Jesus, in Thy Gospel, is Truth itself: nothing but wisdom in Thine actions, power and goodness in Thy miracles, light and instruction in Thy words. With Thee, sacred Redeemer, are the words of eternal life: to whom shall we go but to Thee, eternal Fountain of Truth? Give me, O God, grace to practise what Thou commandest, and command what Thou pleasest.

At the Credo.

Say this with the Priest, p. 126.


The Oblation and Sanctification of the Bread and Wine for the Sacrifice.

During the Offertory of the Bread and the Wine.

ACCEPT, O Eternal Father, this offering which is here made to Thee by Thy Priest, in the name of us here present, and of Thy whole Church. It is as yet only bread and wine: but, by a miracle of Thy power, will shortly become the Body and Blood of Thy beloved Son. He is our High-Priest and our Victim. With Him and through Him we desire to approach Thee this day, and by His hands to offer Thee this Sacrifice, for Thine own honor, praise, and glory; in thanksgiving for all Thy benefits; in satisfaction for all our sins; and for obtaining conversion for all unbelievers, and mercy, grace, and salvation for all Thy faithful. And with this offering of Thine Only-begotten Son we offer Thee ourselves, our souls and bodies, begging that by virtue of this Sacrifice we may be happily united to Thee, and that nothing in life or death may ever separate us from Thee. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

In a humble spirit, and a contrite heart, may we be accepted by Thee, O Lord: and let our Sacrifice be so made in Thy sight this day that it may be pleasing unto Thee, O Lord God. Come, O Sanctifier, Almighty, eternal God, and bless this Sacrifice set forth to Thy holy name.

At the Washing of the Fingers.

OH, what cleanliness and purity of heart ought we to bring with us to this great Sacrifice! But, alas! I am a poor unclean sinner. Oh, wash me, dear Lord, from all the stains of sin in the Blood of the Lamb, that I may be worthy to be present at these heavenly Mysteries.

After the Lavabo, when the Priest bows down at the middle of the Altar.

O MOST holy and adorable Trinity, vouchsafe to receive this our Sacrifice in remembrance of our Saviour's Passion, Resurrection, and glorious Ascension: and grant that we may die with Him to our sins, rise with Him to newness of life, and ascend with Him to Thee. Let those Saints whose memory we celebrate on earth remember us before Thy throne in Heaven, and obtain mercy for us. Through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

At the Orate, fratres.

MAY the Lord receive the Sacrifice from thy hands, to the praise and glory of His name, to our benefit, and to that of all His holy Church.

At the Secreta.

MERCIFULLY hear our prayers, O Lord, and graciously accept this oblation which we Thy servants make unto Thee; and as we offer it to the honor of Thy name, so may it be to us a means of obtaining Thy grace here and life everlasting hereafter. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

(Or, on a Saint's Day.)

SANCTIFY, O Lord, we beseech Thee, these gifts which we offer Thee in this solemnity of Thy holy servant N., and so strengthen us by Thy grace that both in prosperity and adversity our ways may be ever directed to Thine honor. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

At the Sursum Corda.

V. Lift up your hearts.

R. We lift them up unto the Lord.

V. Let us give thanks unto the Lord our God.

R. It is worthy and just.

The Preface.

IT is truly worthy and just, right aud profitable unto salvation, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father Almighty, Eternal God. Who, with Thine Only-begotten Son and the Holy Ghost, art one God, one Lord: not in the singleness of one only Person, but in the Trinity of one Substance. For what we believe of Thy glory, as Thou hast revealed it, that we believe of Thy Son, and that of the Holy Ghost, without any difference or inequality. That in the confession of the True and Eternal Godhead, distinction in Persons, unity in Essence, and equality in Majesty may be adored. Whom the Angels aud Archangels, the Cherubim also and Seraphim, do praise; who cease not daily to cry out, with one voice saying:

(Here the hell is rung.)

HOLY, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Hosts. Heaven and earth are full of Thy glory. Hosanna in the highest.

Blessed is he who cometh in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.


The Canon of the Mass, or Main Action of the Sacrifice.

At the beginning of the Canon.

O ETERNAL and most merciful Father, behold we come to offer Thee our homage this day. We desire to adore, praise, and glorify Thee, joining our hearts aud voices with all Thy Blessed in heaven, and with Thy whole Church upon earth. But acknowledging our great unworthiness and innumerable sins, for which we are heartily sorry and humbly crave Thy pardon, we dare not venture to approach Thee, save through Thy Son, our Advocate and Mediator, Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast given us to be both our High-Priest and Sacrifice. With Him, therefore, and through Him, we venture to offer Thee this Sacrifice: to His most sacred intentions we desire to unite ours: and with this offering which He makes of Himself we wish to make an offering of our whole being unto Thee. With Him, and through Him, we beseech Thee to exalt Thy Holy Catholic Church throughout the world; to maintain her in peace, unity, holiness, and truth; to have mercy on Thy servant, N. our Pope, N. our Bishop, N. our Pastor, [our parents, children, friends, benefactors, etc.,] on all whom we have in any way scandalized, injured, or offended, or for whom we ought to pray; on all who are dying; on all who are under temptation, or in other necessity, of either body or soul; on all our enemies; and on us all poor sinners; that we may all be converted to Thee, and find mercy through Jesus Christ, Thy Son; through whom we hope one day to be admitted into the company of all Thy Saints and Elect, whose memory we here celebrate, whose prayers we desire, and with whom we communicate in these holy Mysteries.

When the Priest spreads his hands over the Oblation.

(Here the bell is again rung.)

GIVE ear, we beseech Thee, to the prayers of Thy servant, who is here appointed to make this Oblation in our behalf; and grant it may be effectual for the obtaining of all those blessings which he asks for us.

Behold, O Lord, we all here present unto Thee in this bread and wine the symbols of our perfect union. Grant, O Lord, that they may be made for us the true Body and Blood of Thy dear Son; that, being consecrated to Thee by this holy Victim, we may live in Thy service, and depart this life in Thy grace.

At the Consecration

Bow down in solemn adoration; make an Act of Faith in the Real Presence of your Saviour's Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity, under the sacramental veils. Offer your whole self to Him, and through Him to His Father: beg that your heart and soul may be happily united to Him.

At the Elevation of the Host.

(Here the bell is rung again.)

MOST adorable Body, I adore Thee with all the powers of my soul. Lord, who hast given Thyself entire to us, grant we may become entirely Thine. I believe, O Lord; help mine unbelief.

Most merciful Saviour, be Thou my protector; strengthen and defend me by Thy heavenly grace, now, and especially at the hour of my death, good Jesus. Amen.

At the Elevation of the Chalice.

(Here also the bell is rung.)

MOST adorable Blood, that washest away all our sins, I adore Thee: happy we, could we return our life and blood for Thine, O blessed Victim.

O Jesus, do Thou cleanse, sanctify, and preserve our souls to eternal life. Live, Jesus, in us, and may we live in Thee. Amen.

After the Elevation.

AND now, O Lord, with grateful hearts we call to mind the sacred Mysteries of Thy Passion and Death, of Thy Resurrection and Ascension. Here is Thy Body that was delivered; here is Thy Blood that was shed for us; of which these exterior signs are but the figures and yet in reality contain the Substance. Now we truly offer Thee, O Lord, that pure and holy Victim which Thou hast been pleased to give us; of which all the other sacrifices were but so many types and figures.

At the Memento for the Dead.

I OFFER Thee, O Almighty Father, this holy Sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Thine Only Son, in behalf of the Faithful Departed, and in particular for the souls of N.N. [here name whom you chiefly propose to pray for]. Likewise of such as I have in any way injured, or of whose sins I have by any means been the cause or occasion; of such as have injured me, and been my enemies; of such as die in war, or have none to pray for them. To these, O Lord, and to all that rest in Christ, grant, we beseech Thee, a place of refreshment, of light, and of peace. Through the same Christ, our Lord. Amen.

At the Nobis quoque Peccatoribus, when the Priest strikes his breast.

VOUCHSAFE to grant the same to us also, poor and miserable sinners; judge us not according to our demerits, but through the infinite multitude of Thy tender mercies, in which we put all our trust, graciously extend to us Thy grace and pardon.

We ask it of Thee, in the name of Thy dear Son, who liveth and reigneth eternally with Thee; and in that form of prayer which He Himself hath taught.


The Communion, or Sacramental, Part of the Canon.

At the Pater Noster.

Our Father, etc.

DELIVER us, O Lord, from those evils which we labor under at present; from past evils, which are our manifold sins; and from all evils to come, which will be the just chastisement of our offences, if our prayers, and those more powerful ones of Thy Saints, who intercede for us, intercept not Thy justice or excite not Thy bounty.

At the Pax Domini.

THY Body was delivered and Thy Blood was shed for us; grant that the commemoration of this Holy Mystery may obtain for us peace, and that those who receive it may find everlasting rest.

At the Agnus Dei, say with the Priest:

LAMB of God, who takest away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world, grant us Thy peace.

After the Agnus Dei.

IN saying to Thine Apostles: Peace I leave you, My peace I give you; Thou hast promised, O Lord, to all Thy Church, that peace which the world cannot give,—peace with Thee, and peace with ourselves. Let nothing, O Lord, ever interrupt this holy peace; let nothing separate us from Thee, to whom we heartily desire to be united, through this Blessed Sacrament of peace and reconciliation. Let this Food of Angels strengthen us in every Christian duty, so as never more to yield under temptations or fall into our common weaknesses.

At the Domine, non sum dingus, say with the Priest three times, striking your breast:

(Here the bell is rung.)

LORD, I am not worthy that Thou shouldst enter under my roof; but only say the word, and my soul shall be healed.

Such as do not intend to communicate sacramentally may communicate spiritually, as follows:

MOST loving Jesus, I adore Thee with a lively faith, who art present in this Sacrament by virtue of Thine infinite power, wisdom, and goodness. All my hope is in Thee. I love Thee, O Lord, with all my heart, who hast so loved me; and therefore I desire to receive Thee now spiritually. Come, therefore, O Lord, to me in spirit, and heal my sinful soul. Feed me, for I am hungry; strengthen me, for I am weak; enliven and sanctify me with Thy sacred Body and Blood; deliver me from all sin, and make me always obedient to Thy commandments; and let me never be separated from Thee, my Saviour, who, with the Father and the Holy Ghost, livest and reignest one God, world without end. Amen.


SOUL of Christ, sanctify me!
Body of Christ, save me!
Blood of Christ, inebriate me!
Water from the side of Christ, wash me!
Passion of Christ, strengthen me!
O Good Jesus, hear me!
Within Thy Wounds hide me!
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee!
From the malicious enemy defend me!
In the hour of my death, call me,
And bid me come to Thee;
That with Thy Saints I may praise Thee
For ever and ever. Amen.

At the Communion.

LET it be now, O Lord, the effect of Thy mercy, that we who have been present at this holy Mystery may find the benefit of it in our souls.


The Public Thanksgiving after Communion.

At the Post-Communion.

WE give Thee thanks, O God, for Thy mercy in admitting us to have a part in offering this Sacrifice to Thy holy name: accept it now to Thy glory, aud be ever mindful of our weakness. Most gracious God, Father of mercy, grant, I beseech Thee, that this adorable Sacrifice of the blessed Body and Blood of Thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, may obtain for us at Thy hands mercy and the remission of all our sins. Amen.

Concluding Prayer.

I RETURN Thee now most hearty thanks, O my God, through Jesus Christ Thy Son, that Thou hast been pleased to deliver Him up to death for us, and to give us His Body and Blood, both as a Sacrament and a Sacrifice, in these holy Mysteries, at which Thou hast permitted me, a most unworthy sinner, to be present this day. May all heaven and earth bless and praise Thee ever for all Thy mercies. Pardon me, O Lord, all the distractions and the manifold negligences of which I have been guilty this day in Thy sight; and let me not depart without Thy blessing. Behold, I desire from this moment to give up myself, and all that belongs to me, into Thy hands; and I beg that all my undertakings, all my thoughts, words, and actions, may henceforward tend to Thy glory. Through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

The Gospel of St. John, p. 158.[1]


ALMIGHTY, Everlasting God, we humbly beseech Thee graciously to look down from Thy high and holy place upon this congregation, and mercifully hear and accept the prayers of Thy Church. Of Thine infinite mercy be pleased to grant us pardon of all our sins, soundness of mind, health of body, and all the necessaries of life: grant also peace in our days, freedom from tempests, and fruitful seasons. Grant also to our prayers the unity of the Catholic Faith, the extirpation of heresies, the destruction of wicked counsels, the increase of true religion, fervor of love and piety, sincere devotion, patience and long-suffering in affliction, and joy in hope. Finally, grant us all things needful for the welfare of our souls and bodies, but, above all, whatever may promote the increase of Thy glory. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.



Blessed be His holy name.

Blessed be Jesus Christ, true God and true man.

Blessed be the name of Jesus.

Blessed be Jesus in the most holy Sacrament of the Altar.

Blessed be the great Mother of God, Mary most holy.

Blessed be her holy and Immaculate Conception.

Blessed be the name of Mary, Virgin and Mother.

Blessed be God in His Angels and in His Saints.


The Priest begins, and the Server, neeling at his left hand, answers him as follows:

INTROIBO ad altare Dei.

S. Ad Deum, qui lætificat juventutem meam.

P. Judica me, Deus, et discerne causam meam de gente non sancta: ab homine iniquo et doloso erue me.

S. Quia tu es, Deus, fortitudo mea: quare me repulisti, et quare tristis incedo, dum affligit me inimicus?

P. Emitte lucem tuam, et veritatem tuam: ipsa me deduxerunt et adduxerunt in monteni sanctum tuum et in tabernacula tua.

S. Et introibo ad altare Dei: ad Deum, qui lætifcat juventutem meam.

P. Confitebor tibi in cithara, Deus, Deus meus. Quare tristis es, anima mea, et quare conturbas me?

S. Spera in Deo, quoniam adhuc confitebor illi; salutare vultus mei, et Deus meus.

P. Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto.

S. Sicut erat in principio, et nunc, et semper, et in sæcula sæculorum. Amen.

P. Introibo ad altare Dei.

S. Ad Deum, qui lætificat juventutem meam.

P. Adjutoriura nostrum in nomine Domini.

S. Qui fecit cœlum et terram.

P. Confiteor Deo, etc.

S. Misereatur tui omnipotens Deus, et dimissis pcccatis tuis, perducat te ad vitam æternam.

P. Amen.

S. Confiteor Deo omnipotenti, beatæ Mariæ semper Virgini, beato Michaeli Archangelo, beato Joanni Baptistæ, Sanctis Apostolis Petro et Paulo, omnibus Sanctis, et tibi, Pater, quia peccavi nimis, cogitatione, verbo, et opere. [Strike your breast thrice, and say] Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. Ideo precor beatam Mariam semper Virginem, beatum Michaelem Archangelum, beatum Joannem Baptistam, sanctos Apostolos Petrum et Paulum, omnes Sanctos, et te, Pater, orare pro me ad Dominum Deum. nostrum.

P. Misereatur vestri, etc. S. Amen.

P. Indulgentiam, absolutionem, etc. S. Amen.

[At a Bishop's Mass, here give him the maniple.]

P. Deus, tu conversus vivificabis nos.

S. Et plebs tua lætabitur in te.

P. Ostende nobis, Domine, misericordiam tuam.

S. Et salutare tuum da nobis.

P. Domine, exaudi orationem meam.

S. Et clamor mens ad te veniat.

P. Dominus vobiscum. S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

When the Priest goes from the book to the middle of the Altar:

P. Kyrie eleison. S. Kyrie eleison.

P. Kyrie eleison. S. Christe eleison.

P. Christe eleison. S. Christe eleison.

P. Kyrie eleison. S. Kyrie eleison.

P. Kyrie eleison.

P. Dominus vobiscum. S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

At a Bishop's Mass:

P. Pax vobis. S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

When the Priest says, Flectamus genua, as is the case a few times in the year, answer, Levate.

P. Per omnia sæcula sæculorum. S. Amen.

At the end of the Epistle say, Deo gratias; then remove the book to the other side of the Altar, and always kneel or stand on the side opposite to that on which the book has been placed.

P. Dominus vobiscum. S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

P. Sequentia sancti evangelii secundum N.

Making the sign of the Cross on your forehead, mouth, and breast, say:

S. Gloria tibi, Domine.

Stand during the Gospel, and at the end say:

S. Laus tibi, Christe.

P. Dominus vobiscum. S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

Here give the wine and water, and prepare the basin, water, and towel for the Priest. When the Priest has washed his fingers, kneel in your former place, and answer:

P. Orate fratres, etc.

S. Suscipiat Doininus sacnficium de manibus tuis ad laudem et gloriam nominis sui, ad utilitatem quoque nostram, totiusque Ecclesiæ suæ sanctæ.

P. Per omnia sæcula sæculorum. S. Amen.

P. Dominus vobiscum. S. Et cum spiritui tuo.

P. Sursum corda. S. Habemus ad Dominum.

P. Gratias agamus Domino Deo nostro. S. Dignum et justum est.

At Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus ring the bell.

When you see the Priest spread his hands over the chalice, give warning, by the bell, of the consecration which is about to be made. Then holding up the vestment with your left hand, and having the bell in your right, ring during the elevation of the host and of the chalice. As often as you pass by the Blessed Sacrament make a genuflection.

P. Per omnia sæcula sæculorum. S. Amen.

P. Et ne nos inducas in tentationem. S. Sed libera nos a malo.

P. Per omnia sæcula sæculorum. S. Amen.

P. Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum. S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

When the Priest says Domine, non sum dignus, ring the bell; and after his Communion, if there are communicants, prepare the cloth and say the Confiteor. After they have received, serve the Priest with wine and water for the ablutions. Then remove the book to the other side of thf Altar, take away the cloth from the communicants, and return to your place.

P. Dominus vobiscum. S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

P. Per omnia sæcula sæculorum. S. Amen.

P. Dominus vobiscum. S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

P. Ite; missa est: or, Benedicamus Domino. S. Deo gratias.

In Masses for the dead:

P. Requiescant in pace. S. Amen.

At a Bishop's Mass:

B. Adjutorium nostrum in nomine Domini.

S. Qui fecit cœlum et terram.

B. Sit noinen Domini benedictum.

S. Ex hoc nunc et usque in sæculum.

Benedicat vos omnipotens Deus, Pater ✠ et Filius ✠ et Spiritus ✠ Sanctus. S. Amen.

Remove the book to the Gospel side, if it be left open: kneel as you pass, to receive the Priest's blessing, answering Amen.

P. Dominus vobiscum. S. Et cum spiritu tuo.

P. Initium (or, Sequentia) saucti evangelii, etc.

S. Gloria tibi, Domine.

At the end say, Deo gratias.


On Sundays, and whenever need arises, the salt and clean water being prepared, in the Church or in the Sacristy, the Priest, vested in surplice and violet stole, first says:

OUR help is in the name of the Lord.

R. Who hath made heaven and earth.


I EXORCISE thee, O creature of salt, by the living God, by the true God, by the holy God, by the God who commanded thee to be cast into the water by Eliseus the Prophet, that the barrenness of the same might be healed; that thou become salt for the preservation of them that believe, and be to all who take thee salvation of soul and body; and from the place wherein thou shalt be sprinkled let every delusion and wickedness of the devil, and all unclean spirits, fly and depart when adjured by Him who shall come to judge the living and the dead, and the world by fire.

R. Amen.

Let us pray.

WE humbly implore Thy boundless clemency, Almighty and Everlasting God, that of Thy bounty Thou wouldst deign to bless and sanctify this creature of salt, which Thou hast given for the use of mankind; let it be unto all who take it health of mind and body; that whatsoever shall be touched or sprinkled with it be freed from all ner of uncleanness, and from all assaults of spiritual wickedness. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, etc.

R. Amen.


I EXORCISE thee, O creature of water, in the name of God the Father Almighty; and in the name of Jesus Christ, His Son, our Lord; and in the power of the Holy Ghost; that thou mayest become water exorcised for the chasing away of all the power of the enemy; that thou mayest have strength to uproot and cast out the enemy himself and his apostate angels, by the power of the same our Lord Jesus Christ, who shall come to judge the living and the dead, and the world by fire.

R. Amen.

Let us pray.

O GOD, who for the salvation of mankind hast founded one of Thy greatest Sacraments in the element of water, graciously give ear when we call upon Thee, and pour upon this element, prepared for divers purifications, the power of Thy blessing; let Thy creature serving in Thy Mysteries, by Divine grace be effectual for casting out devils and for driving away diseases, that on whatsoever in the houses or places of the faithful this water shall be sprinkled, it may be freed from all uncleanness, and delivered from hurt. Let not the blast of pestilence nor disease remain there; let every enemy that lieth in wait depart; and if there be aught which hath ill-will to the safety and quietness of the inhabitants, let it flee away at the sprinkling of this water, that they, being healed by the invocation of Thy holy name, may be defended from all that rise up against them. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, etc.

R. Amen.

The Priest thrice mingles salt with water in the form of a Cross, saying once:

LET this become a mixture of salt and water, in the name of the Father,and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

R. Amen.

V. The Lord be with you.

R. And with thy spirit.

Let us pray.

O GOD, Author of invincible might, King of unconquerable dominion, and ever a Conqueror who doest wonders, who puttest down the strength of all that rise up against Thee; who overcomest the rage of the adversary; who by Thy power dost cast down his wickedness; we, O Lord, with fear and trembling humbly entreat and implore Thee to mercifully look upon this creature of salt and water, to graciously illumine and sanctify it with the dew of Thy favor; that wheresoever it shall be sprinkled, by the invocation of Thy holy name all troubling of unclean spirits may be cast out, and the dread of the poisonous serpent be chased far away; and let the presence of the Holy Ghost vouchsafe to be with us, who ask Thy mercy in every place. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, etc.

R. Amen.


The Asperges, or sprinkling with Holy Water, is performed every Sunday, immediately before High Mass, except when the Bishop celebrates pontifically.
The Priest who is about to celebrate High Mass first blesses the holy water according to the preceding Form, and then enters the Sanctuary vested in his alb and stole (and sometimes in a cope also), accompanied by an Acolyte bearing the vessel of holy water (at Solemn Mass he is accompanied also by the Deacon and Subdeacon). Arriving at the foot of the Altar, the Priest, while intoning the following Anthem, sprinkles the Altar three times; then himself, and afterwards his assistants. Then going down into the Church, he sprinkles the congregation.

ASPERGES me, Domine, hyssopo, et mundabor: lavabis me, et super nivem delababor.

THOU shalt sprinkle me, O Lord, with hyssop, and I shall be cleansed: Thou shalt wash me, and I shall be made whiter than snow.

Ps. Miserere mei, Deus, secundum magnam misericordiam tuam.

Ps. Have mercy on me, O God, according to Thy great mercy.

V. Gloria Patri, etc.

V. Glory be to the Father, etc.

Ant. Asperges me, etc.

Ant. Thou shalt sprinkle me, etc.

The Priest, being returned to the foot of the Altar, says:

OSTENDE nobis, Domine, misericordiam tuam.

SHOW us Thy mercy, O Lord.

R. Et salutare tuum da nobis.

R. And grant us Thy salvation.

V. Domine, exaudi orationem meam.

V. O Lord, hear my prayer.

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that as Thou dost grant the petitions of them that ask Thee, so, never forsaking them. Thou wilt prepare them for the rewards to come.

DEUS, qui corda fidelium Sancti Spiritus illustratione docuisti: da nobis in eodem Spiritu recta sapere, et de ejus semper consolatione gaudere.

O GOD, who didst teach the hearts of Thy faithful by the light of Thy Holy Spirit: grant us, by the same Spirit, to have a right judgment in all things, and evermore to rejoice in His holy comfort.

DEUS, qui neminem in te sperantem nimium affligi permittis, sed pium precibus præstas auditum: pro postulationibus nostris, votisque susceptis gratias agimus, te piissime deprecantes, ut a cunctis semper muniamur adversis. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium tuum, qui tecum vivit et regnat, in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia Sæcula sæculorum.

R. Amen. O GOD, who sufferest none that hope in Thee to be afflicted overmuch, but dost turn a gracious ear unto their prayers: we render Thee thanks for having heard our supplications and vows; most humbly beseeching Thee that we may evermore be protected from all adversities. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, etc.

R. Amen.

R. Amen.


For the Whole Church.

Defend us, O Lord (p. 121).

For all Orders of Ecclesiastics.

Almighty and Everlasting God (p. 121).

For the Pope.

O God, the Pastor (p. 122).

For Bishops, and the People committed to them.

ALMIGHTY and Everlasting God, who alone dost great wonders, send down upon Thy servants, and the congregations committed unto them, the spirit of Thy saving grace; and that they may truly please Thee, pour forth upon them the continual dew of Thy blessing.

For the Bishop of the Diocese.

GRANT, we beseech Thee, O Lord, to Thy servant our Bishop, that, by preaching and doing such things as are right, he may by the example of good works edify the minds of those under his authority, and receive of Thee, most tender Shepherd, an everlasting recompense and reward.

For a Congregation or Family.

Defend, we beseech Thee (p. 243).

For the Preservation of Concord in a Congregation.

O GOD, the Giver of peace and Lover of charity, grant to Thy servants true concord and union with Thy holy will, that we may be delivered from all temptations which assault us.

Against the Persecutors of the Church.

MERCIFULLY hear, O Lord, we beseech Thee, the prayers of Thy Church: that all adversities and errors being done away, we may serve Thee with a pure and undisturbed devotion.

In any Necessity.

O God, our refuge and strength (p. 752).

In any Tribulation

O ALMIGHTY God, despise not Thy people who cry unto Thee in their affliction; but, for the glory of Thy name, turn away Thine anger, and help us in our tribulations.

In Time of Famine or Pestilence.

GRANT, we beseech Thee, O Lord, an answer to our hearty supplications; and Thy wrath being appeased, turn away from us this famine (or pestilence), that the hearts of men may know that these scourges proceed from Thine anger, and cease by Thy mercy.

For Rain.

O GOD, in whom we live, and move, and are, grant us seasonable rain; that we, enjoying a sufficiency of support in this life, may with more confidence strive after the things which are eternal.

For Fair Weather.

HEAR us, O Lord, who cry unto Thee, and grant fair weather to us. Thy suppliant servants; that we, who are justly afflicted for our sins, may by Thy preventing pity find mercy.

For the gift of Tears.

ALMIGHTY and most Merciful God, who didst cause a fount of living water to spring out of a rock, for Thy people in their thirst: draw forth tears of compunction from our stony hearts; that we may weep over our sins, and by Thy mercy deserve to obtain pardon for the same.

For Forgiveness of Sins.

O GOD, who rejectest none that come unto Thee, but in loving-kindness art appeased even with the greatest sinners who repent: mercifully regard our prayers in our humiliation, and enlighten our hearts, that we may be able to fulfil Thy commandments.

For the Tempted and Afflicted.

O GOD, who justifiest the ungodly, and willest not the death of a sinner: we humbly entreat Thy Majesty to protect Thy servants, who trust in Thy mercy, with Thy heavenly assistance, and preserve them by Thy continual protection; that they may constantly serve Thee, and by no temptation be separated from Thee.

Against Evil Thoughts.

ALMIGHTY and most. Merciful God, graciously hearken unto our prayers: and free our hearts from the temptations of evil thoughts; that we may worthily become a fit habitation for Thy Holy Spirit.

For the gift of Continence.

Inflame, O Lord (p. 311).

For the gift of Humility.

O GOD, who resistest the proud, and givest grace to the humble: grant us the virtue of true humility, whereof Thine Only-begotten showed in Himself a pattern for Thy faithful; that we may never by our pride provoke Thine anger, but rather by our meekness receive the riches of Thy grace.

For the gift of Patience.

O GOD, who didst crush the pride of the enemy by the long-suffering of Thine Only-begotten Son: grant, we beseech Thee, that we may worthily recall those things which in His tender love He bore for us; and thus following His example may patiently endure all our adversities.

For the gift of Charity.

O GOD, who makest all things to work together for good unto those who love Thee: give to our hearts the lasting affection of Thy love; that such desires as are inspired by Thee may never be changed by any temptation.

For those at Sea.

O GOD, who didst bring our fathers through the Red Sea, and bear them through the great waters singing praises unto Thy name: we humbly beseech Thee to vouchsafe to turn away all adversities from Thy servants at sea, and to bring them with a calm voyage unto the haven where they would be.

For Heretics and Schismatics.

O ALMIGHTY and Everlasting God, who hast compassion on all, and wouldst not that any should perish: favorably look down upon all those who are seduced by the deceit of Satan; that, all heretical impiety being removed, the hearts of such as err may repent and return to the unity of Thy truth.

For Jews.

O ALMIGHTY and Everlasting God, who repellest not from Thy mercy even the perfidious Jews; hear the prayer which we offer for the blindness of that people; that the light of Thy truth, Christ our Lord, being known to them, they may be delivered from their darkness.

For pagans.

O ALMIGHTY and Everlasting God, who desirest not the death but the life of sinners: mercifully accept our prayers, and, delivering pagans from the worship of idols, unite them to Thy Church, to the praise and honor of Thy glorious name.

For our Friends.

O GOD, who, by the grace of the Holy Spirit, hast poured into the hearts of Thy faithful the gifts of charity: grant to Thy servants and handmaids, for whom we implore Thy mercy, health both of body and soul; that they may love Thee with all their strength, and cheerfully perform those things which are pleasing unto Thee.

For Enemies.

O GOD, the lover and preserver of peace and charity: grant unto all our enemies peace and true charity; give them remission of all their sins, and by Thy power deliver us from their snares.

A Short Recommendation to God.

INTO the hands of Thy unspeakable mercy, O Lord, I commend my soul and body; my senses, my words, my thoughts, and all my actions, with all the necessities of my body and soul; my going forth and my coming in; my faith and conversation; the course and end of my life; the day and hour of my death; my rest and resurrection with the Saints and Elect.

For the Sick.

Almighty and Eternal God (p. 496).

For a Sick Person near Death.

ALMIGHTY and Everlasting God, preserver of souls, who dost correct those whom Thou dost love, and for their amendment dost tenderly chastise those whom Thou dost receive, we call upon Thee, O Lord, to bestow Thy healing, that the soul of Thy servant, at the hour of its departure from the body, may by the hands of Thy holy Angels be presented without spot unto Thee.

For the Dead.

Almighty, Everlasting God (p. 269).

A Prayer before Study or Instructions.

INCOMPREHENSIBLE Creator, the true Fountain of light and only Author of all knowledge: vouchsafe, we beseech Thee, to enlighten our understandings, and to remove from us all darkness of sin and ignorance. [Thou, who makest eloquent the tongues of those that want utterance, direct our tongues, and pour on our lips the grace of Thy blessing.] Give us a diligent and obedient spirit, quickness of apprehension, capacity of retaining, and the powerful assistance of Thy holy grace; that what we hear or learn we may apply to Thy honor and the eternal salvation of our own souls.

For a Husband or Wife.

O gracious Father (p. 435).

O merciful Lord (p. 451).

O merciful God (p. 452).

Prayers of Parents, for themselves and for their Children.

Almighty God, the Father (p. 453).

O FATHER of mankind, who hast given unto me these my children, and committed them to my charge to bring them up for Thee, and to prepare them for everlasting life: assist me with Thy heavenly grace, that I may be able to fulfil this most sacred duty and stewardship. Teach me both what to give and what to withhold; when to reprove and when to forbear; make me to be gentle, yet firm; considerate and watchful; and deliver me equally from the weakness of indulgence, and the excess of severity; and grant that, both by word and example, I may be careful to lead them in the ways of wisdom and true piety, so that at last I may, with them, be admitted to the unspeakable joys of our true home in heaven, in the company of the blessed Angels and Saints.

O HEAVENLY Father, I commend my children unto Thee. Be Thou their God and Father; and mercifully supply whatever is wanting in me through frailty or negligence. Strengthen them to overcome the corruptions of the world, to resist all solicitations to evil, whether from within or without; and deliver them from the secret snares of the enemy. Pour Thy grace into their hearts, and confirm and multiply in them the gifts of Thy Holy Spirit, that they may daily grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ; and so, faithfully serving Thee here, may come to rejoice in Thy presence hereafter.

A Child's Prayer.

O ALMIGHTY God, who hast given unto me my father and mother, and made them to be an image of Thine authority, and love, and tender watchfulness; and hast commanded me to love, and honor, and obey them in all things: give me grace cheerfully and with my whole heart to keep this Thy law. Help me to love them fervently, to honor them truly, to yield a ready obedience to their commands, to comply with their wishes, to study their happiness in everything, and to bear their rebukes with patience and humility. Deliver me, O God, from pride, rebellion, and wilfulness, from passion and stubborniiess, from sloth and carelessness. Make me diligent in all my duties and studies, and patient in all my trials; that so living, I may deserve to be Thy child, who art our Father in Heaven.

A Prayer for Choosing a State of Life.

O LORD, I beseech Thee to grant me Thy divine light, that I may know the designs of Thy providence concerning me, and that, filled with a sincere desire for my soul's salvation, I may say, with the young man in the Gospel: What must I do to be saved? All states of life are before me; but, still undecided what to do, I await Thy commands, I offer myself to Thee without restriction, without reserve, with a most perfect submission.

Far be it from me, O Lord, to oppose the order of Thy wisdom, and, unfaithful to the inspiration of Thy grace, to strive to subject the will of the Creator to the caprice of the creature. It is not for the servant to choose the way in which he will serve his master: do Thou lay upon me what commands Thou pleasest. My lot is in Thy hands. I make no exception, lest perchance what I except be that which Thou willest, and because I am too short-sighted to discover in the future the different obstacles I shall meet with, if, without Thy guidance, I make myself the arbiter of my own conduct. Speak, Lord, to my soul; speak to me as Thou didst to the youthful Samuel: Speak, Lord; for Thy servant heareth. I cast myself at Thy feet, and I am ready, if it be Thy will, to sacrifice myself as a victim to Thee for the remainder of my days, in such wise as Thou shalt deem most worthy of Thy greatness.

O my God, inspire the affections of my parents, and guide their projects according to the counsels of Thy wisdom. Lord, I sincerely desire to consult Thee who art the Eternal Truth; grant that my parents also may submit themselves to its decrees, faithfully and wdthout reserve.

A Prayer in Times of Threatened Calamity.

O JESUS CHRIST, we call upon Thee, Holy, Immortal God. Have mercy upon us and upon all men. Purify us by Thy holy Blood, forgive us by Thy holy Blood, save us by Thy holy Blood, now and for ever. Amen.

For Civil Authorities.

We pray Thee, O Almighty and Eternal God (p. 56).


For all Things Necessary to Salvation.

(Composed by Pope Clement XI., A.D. 1721.)

O MY God, I believe in Thee; do Thou strengthen my faith. All my hopes are in Thee; do Thou secure them. I love Thee; teach me to love Thee daily more and more. I am sorry that I have offended Thee; do Thou increase my sorrow.

I adore Thee as my first beginning; I aspire after Thee as my last end. I give Thee thanks as my constant benefactor; I call upon Thee as my sovereign protector.

Vouchsafe, O my God, to conduct me by Thy wisdom, to restrain me by Thy justice, to comfort me by Thy mercy, to defend me by Thy power.

To Thee I desire to consecrate all my thoughts, words, actions, and sufferings; that henceforward I may think of Thee, speak of Thee, refer all my actions to Thy greater glory, and suffer willingly whatever Thou shalt appoint.

Lord, I desire that in all things Thy will may be done, because it is Thy will, and in the manner that Thou willest.

I beg of Thee to enlighten my understanding, to inflame my will, to purify my body, and to sanctify my soul.

Give me strength, O my God, to expiate my offences, to overcome my temptations, to subdue my passions, and to acquire the virtues proper for my state.

Fill my heart with tender affection for Thy goodness, hatred of my faults, love of my neighbor, and contempt of the world.

Let me always remember to be submissive to my superiors, courteous to my inferiors, faithful to my friends, and charitable to my enemies.

Assist me to overcome sensuality by mortification, avarice by almsdeeds, anger by meekness, and tepidity by devotion.

O my God, make me prudent in my undertakings, courageous in dangers, patient in affliction, and humble in prosperity.

Grant that I may be ever attentive at my prayers, temperate at my meals, diligent in my employments, and constant in my resolutions.

Let my conscience be ever upright and pure, my exterior modest, my conversation edifying, and my deportment regular.

Assist me, that I may continually labor to overcome nature, to correspond with Thy grace, to keep Thy commandments, and to work out my salvation.

Discover to me, O my God, the nothingness of this world, the greatness of heaven, the shortness of time, and the length of eternity.

Grant that I may prepare for death; that I may fear Thy judgments, escape hell, and in the end obtain heaven; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

  1. When a Feast of greater rank falls on a Sunday, the Sunday Gospel is substituted for that of St. John.