PRAYERS FROM THE HIDDEN TREASURE OF THE HOLY MASS: PRINTABLE FORMAT
PRAYERS BEFORE AND DURING HOLY MASS
A Prayer of most humble Devotion to the Holy Spirit, to be offered before hearing Holy Mass,
in order to implore His aid
Come, O Holy Spirit, and with Thy most holy grace gather
together, I beseech of Thee, all the faculties and all the affections
of my soul, so that, with devout attention and with my whole heart, I
may be able to attend this holy Mass, and obtain thereby those benefits
for which, albeit unworthy, I ardently hope, to the greater glory of
God and the benefit of my own soul, through the goodness and compassion
of the same my Lord and God. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest says the Confiteor
O my most loving Saviour, Who, when weighed down with faintness and
grief of heart, in the garden of Gethsemane, didst turn in fervent
prayer to the Eternal Father, while the drops of Thy bloody sweat ran
down profusely to the ground; grant me the grace that, in memory of Thy
most holy Passion, I may, at least, shed abundant tears of grief and
contrition, as Thou Thy bloody sweat of agony that night. Amen.
Prayer when the Priest begins the Introit
O my most benign and gentle Saviour, Who, when led like a
malefactor before Annas, didst receive from the fierce Jews those cruel
blows, grant that, in imitation of Thee, I also may receive with
willingness the affronts of my enemies, and bear up under all the
troubles and temptations of this treacherous world. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest repeats the Kyrie Eleison.
O my Lord Jesus Christ, Who in the house of Caiphas wast three times
basely denied by Peter, chief of Thy apostles; I humbly pray Thee, make
me ever to shun wicked companions, so that I may never, by following
them, and through my own grievous sinfulness and imperfection, be led
away from Thee and Thine infinite goodness. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest reads the Epistle
O my most compassionate Saviour, Who, being conducted to Pilate's house
by the Jews, with every kind of outrage, wast unjustly accused by false
witnesses in His presence; teach me, I pray thee, to fly all the snares
of the wicked; and enable me, amid the constant practice of good works,
ever sincerely and openly to profess Thy holy Catholic Faith, till the
latest moment of my life. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest reads the Gospel
O my most merciful Lord, Who, when sent back by Herod to Pilate, wast
the occasion of their reconciliation, grant to me such strength that I
may never fear the devices of the wicked, but rather obtain from
persecutions and trials such benefit that, even in the midst of them,
my heart may never be troubled, but ever grow more and more conformed,
in and by all things, to Thy most holy will. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest offers the Sacrifice
My Lord Jesus Christ, Who, to satisfy the justice of the Eternal Father
for my sins, didst freely choose to be bound to the column, and under
so many stripes to scatter Thy most Precious Blood; grant me the grace
to cleanse my soul of the hideous stains of sin in those ruddy streams,
so that I may offer it all fresh and pure, in union with Thy merits, to
the Eternal Father. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest washes his Fingers
O my most compassionate Saviour, O Son of the living God, Who,
when declared innocent by Pilate Thy judge, didst patiently bear the
tumult and the eager cries of the Jews, in their bitter malice against
Thee; grant me the grace to lead a life truly innocent amid the stormy
waves of this world, and present only the resistance of patient charity
to the outrages and attacks of enemies. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest says the Preface
O my most sweet and gentle Saviour, Who didst receive from Pilate the
unjust sentence to die ignominiously on the cross, grant me the grace
that when I shall arrive at the last hour of my life, I may, through
love of Thee, feel no fear when my sentence of death, however painful,
has at last to be put in force; but that I may sigh out my soul in the
embrace of Thy most sacred arms. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest prays for the Living
O my most compassionate Saviour, Who didst will, for the
redemption of the world, to carry the heavy Cross upon Thy shoulders,
even to Mount Calvary, grant me the grace that following Thy example, I
may willingly embrace the cross of the mortifications and trials of
this world, and bear it patiently, for love of Thee, even unto death.
Prayer while the Priest elevates the Host
O my most merciful Saviour, Who, after being shamefully nailed
to the Cross by the hands of wicked men, wast lifted up from the ground
upon it; uplift, I beseech Thee, by the excess of Thine infinite
compassion, my poor heart above all earthly passions and cares, so as
to give my mind to nothing but thoughts of Thy most holy Passion, of my
own death, and of the eternal things of Heaven. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest elevates the Chalice
My Lord Jesus Christ, Who didst will that the true fountain of
all graces should be Thy Blood gushing over us from Thy most Sacred
Wounds, cause me always, when suddenly assailed by evil thoughts, to
have recourse to the power and efficacy of these most sacred wounds,
and to draw from them my certain remedy, so as ever to rise victorious
over temptation during my whole life. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest intercedes for the Departed
My most gracious Saviour, Who, while fixed in anguish on the Cross,
didst pray to the Eternal Father for the salvation of all the human
race, for those even who crucified Thee; inflame my heart with the
heavenly fire of a most ardent love, so that in all time coming, taught
by Thy example, I may learn tenderly to love my neighbor and to do good
even to mine enemies. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest recites the Our Father
My Lord Jesus Christ, Who, just before Thy death of most bitter
anguish, didst recommend Thy Mother, the most Blessed Virgin, to St.
John, and then the same John I to her; be pleased ever to accept my
body and soul, so that, by means of Thy most holy help, I may quickly
advance in the way of the Spirit and of perfection. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest puts into the Chalice a portion of the Host
O my most merciful Saviour, Who, descending after death, didst
rejoice with Thy Divine presence the poor expectant Souls of the
patriarchs, cause, I beseech Thee, by the virtue of Thy most Precious
Blood, and of Thy most holy Passion, to descend upon all the Souls
suffering in Purgatory, so that, freed from these their dreadful pains,
they may be admitted to enjoy the eternal glory of Heaven. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest says the Agnus Dei
My Lord Jesus Christ, since many of the Jews recognized their
transgressions, and wept for their sins, at the cruel sight of Thy most
bitter death, grant me the grace, through the merits of that death,
that I, too, may bitterly weep and lament for my sins. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest receives the most holy Communion
My most gracious Lord, Who, for the redemption of the whole human race,
didst permit Thy most Precious Body to be placed at burial in a new
sepulchre, grant me the grace that my heart may be so made new as to be
ready for Thee to enter therein. Amen.
Prayer while the Priest gives his Blessing to the People
O my Lord, most loving and most worthy to be loved, Who, while Thy
disciples were all intently given to prayer, didst send down from
Heaven the Holy Spirit to console them; purify, I beseech Thee, my
heart with Thy most holy grace, so that the Holy Spirit, finding in it
a pleasing abode, may dwell therein, and so enrich the poverty of my
EXERCISES FOR CONFESSION
Soul, that dost belong to God, read and consider these devout
exercises. The more you read and make your own these good and fervent
thoughts, the more will you please Jesus, and the greater your reward
in the life eternal. If at the first sentence you find yourself struck
with devotion and compunction, pass no farther on, but rest where God
hath begun to draw and work upon you.
When circumstances prevent your communicating sacramentally, fail not
to do so spiritually, breathing out your love to Jesus, and desiring to
receive Jesus in the Sacrament. Prepare yourself for this spiritual
Communion by the following devout acts, affections, and exercises.
Exercises for Confession
Weep, O my soul, for all your sins; detest your guilt beyond every form
of calamity; and do so with the purpose of Confession: for by your sins
you have offended God your Father; you have offended God your Creator;
you have offended your God Who hath never injured you; you have
offended God Who hath elected you for His adopted son; you have
offended God Who hath made you an inheritor of paradise; you have
offended God, the highest Good-----goodness infinite-----the fountain of grace; you have offended God while in the very act of blessing you.
Weep for your sins, because you have offended a God Who for love of you
made Himself man; you have offended a God Who for love of you was born
in a stable; you have offended a God Who, while yet in His infancy,
began to shed tears and Blood for you; you have offended a God Who for
love of you lived poor and unknown in a workman's shed; you have
offended a God Who for love of you went about preaching His heavenly
doctrine amid toil and misery; you have offended a God Who for love of
you instituted the most holy Sacraments; you have offended a God Who
for love of you has left Himself to be entirely yours in the Most Holy
Sacrament; you have offended a God Who sweated Blood for love of you;
you have offended a God Who let Himself be bound and dragged and
outraged for love of you; you have offended a God Who caused Himself to
be buffeted, to be spit upon, to be kicked again and again, for love of
you; you have offended a God Who chose to be tied to a pillar, and
scourged, for love of you; you have offended a God Who chose to be
crowned with thorns for love of you; you have offended a God Who let
Himself be robed as a mock king, and made an object of jest and
ridicule, for love of you; you have offended a God Who let Himself be
loaded with a heavy Cross for love of you; you have offended a God Who
caused His Hands and His Feet to be pierced with great nails for love
of you; you have offended a God Who gave His last gasp hanging nailed
on a Cross for love of you; you have offended a God Who let gall and
vinegar be given to Him to drink for love of you; you have offended a
God Who for a last pledge of His unbounded love, left you as a son to
Mary, and Mary as mother to you; you have offended a God Who died
transfixed upon a Cross for your salvation; you have offended a God Who
let His Side be broken through by a spear for love of you; you have
offended a God Who chose to be buried in a tomb; you have offended a
God Who rose again to life, and sits at the right hand of the Father,
to give Paradise to you; you have offended Jesus Christ your Redeemer,
your Master, your Life, the Physician of your soul; you have offended a
God Who hath tried hard by infinite kindness to get loved by you; you
have offended a God Who seeks no recompense for so many benefits, Out
only to be loved in return by you, and obeyed by you; you have offended
a God Who seeks after your love in order to make you happy in this
life, and, oh, how happy in the next! You have offended a God Who loves
you as the pupil of His eye. My soul, my soul, you have done ill-----and
you could bear to do so! What harm had your God done to you? Tell me
why you have offended Him. Begin now at least to lament your sins, and
to love God.
Oh, if I had always loved and served that God Who has loved me more
than His own life! My love, my life, my salvation, my hope! I love Thee
above all things, with my whole heart; I detest my sins more than any
sort of affliction. I will confess my sins, and I wish never again to
offend Thee, O my dear Redeemer!
Prayer before Confession
O most loving Trinity, and most worthy of all love, Father, Son, and
Holy Spirit, my God, I adore Thee. Behold this wretched creature at Thy
feet, who desires to make his peace with Thee by means of a good
Confession. But since, O my God, without Thy help I can do nothing but
evil, I beseech of Thee, by the bowels of Thy compassion, to grant me
light, that I may recollect all my sins; make me to perceive the
hideousness and the enormity of sin, so that I may abhor and detest it
with all my heart. O my Jesus, Fountain of pity, I draw near to Thee
that Thou mayest wash and cleanse me of my filth. O Sun of justice,
illuminate this poor blind creature. O Divine Physician, heal this poor
sick man. O infinite Love, inflame this soul with Thy love, so that it
may break down and dissolve in tears of grief. And may this my
confession be such that I may now in earnest change my life, and never
again find myself separated from Thee, my God my hope, my love, the
salvation, life, and peace of my poor soul!
Prayer after Confession
Dear Jesus, be Thou forever blessed, for having by Thy pardon freed me
from Hell, and replaced me in my inheritance of Paradise. Infinite
Goodness, I thank Thee. But, O my God, I am capable of betraying Thee
more than ever, and worse than Judas: I cannot trust to myself. Help,
help me with Thy grace; hold Thy hands above me; help me in my
temptations, and, oh, far rather take away my life than let me again
EXERCISES IN PREPARATION FOR HOLY COMMUNION
Arise, my soul; revive thy faith, which tells thee that thy God
become man, that same Jesus Who was born in the stable of Bethlehem,
that Jesus Who rose triumphant from the grave, that Jesus Who now sits
glorious at the right hand of the Father, is now present with thee in
the Most Holy Sacrament. O Faith! O Faith! what greater thing can be
said and believed? God is here, in order to enter my heart and become
entirely mine-----the Almighty: God!
Act of Faith
My Jesus, Thou Truth infallible, since it is part of Thy revelation, I
believe that Thou art present, Soul, Body, and Divinity, in the
consecrated host. I believe that in Communion I receive the same Jesus
Who died, and Who rose again; and that in Him I receive the Father and
the Holy Spirit.
Act of Adoration
O my soul, what art thou about? What thoughts engage thee? In a few
minutes, thy God will enter within thee! O God, I profoundly humble
myself, and I adore Thee. I adore Thee, beloved Jesus, in the
Sacrament. Most holy Virgin, ye Angels, Saints, and Souls who love God,
adore with me my Jesus; make up for my defect of worship, beseech for
me living faith and profound veneration, now that I approach and
receive Jesus Christ.
What can be wanting to thee, O my soul, now that the Almighty comes to
visit thee? He comes to illuminate thee, to unite Himself heart to
heart with thee, in order to give thee a lively pledge of that glory
which He keeps prepared for thee in Heaven. Up! arise! enlarge thy
heart, increase thy confidence; know that so much as thou hath promised
to hear thee, and, bound by His word, He can give thee every good
thing; it costs Him no more than the opening of His Hand. Thy Jesus is
to thee as a Father; much He loveth thee, and wishes to bestow on thee
every sort of benefit. Thy Jesus, who is faithful, hath promised to
hear thee, and, bound by His word, He will do thee great favors. Well,
then, to grow rich in soul you need only to seek His graces, and
ardently to hope.
Act of Hope
My Jesus, my hope, confiding in Thy promises through the Blood
which Thou hast shed for me, I hope, O Infinite Pity, I hope that in
receiving Thee, Thou wilt sanctify my soul, and enkindle within it
heavenly desires; so that I may live and die loving only Thee, O
Infinite Good. Yes, O my dearest God, God of all my hopes, Sanctifier
of souls, sanctify me.
What more could God do, in order to get loved by thee? God has made
Himself man, was born in a stable, died upon a Cross and dwells in the
Sacrament for love of thee. Nay, that infinite love invites thee to
receive Him, calls thee to Himself with a desire so strong that He
cannot endure thy delays. O ingenious devices of love! The great God of
infinite beauty and majesty wishes this morning to confer upon me such
a favor as He hath never bestowed on the seraphim. He purposes to come
to dwell in my heart; He wishes to unite Himself to me. And thou, my
soul, dost thou not burn and flame with love toward a God Who is all
love toward thee?
Act of Love
O my Jesus, my love, God of my soul, how good Thou art, how
loving, how every way dear and worthy to be loved! My God, I love Thee
with all my soul, my life, my heart, my mind, and all my faculties and
strength. I love Thee more than myself, Thou one object of all my
desires, my beginning and my last end. O that I had infinite tongues
with which to praise and bless Thee! O that I could at any sacrifice
carry Thy most holy name through the world, to make Thee known and
loved! O God! I would willingly waste myself away in labors for the
love of Thee. I desire to burn with love, I desire to bless Thee, to
thank Thee, to love Thee, with the love that the most holy Mary bore to
Thee; I desire to love Thee more than all created beings united. I love
Thee, my Jesus, my treasure, my Father, my life, my hope, my Heaven.
Spouse of my soul, I love Thee, because Thou deservest to be loved-----because
Thou art God! Ah, Lord! would that I were all love, would that I did
nothing but love Thee! My soul, created by God to love God, love Him
then, love thy God; my heart, which can find no peace or satisfaction
out of God, drive from thee every mere earthly attachment, and give
welcome to thy God. Ah, Mary, mother of holy love, obtain for me to
love my God!
How shouldest thou burn, my soul, to receive a God of infinite purity,
holiness, and majesty, thou who art an abyss of vice, ingratitude, and
sins! Hast thou forgotten all thou hast done against thy God? Ah, how
often hast thou been more cruel, more afflicting to Jesus than Calvary
itself! Jesus has been crucified in thee, so often as thou hast
Act of Contrition
Dear Lord Jesus, by my sins I have crowned Thee with thorns, I
have nailed Thee on the Cross, I have given Thee gall to drink, I have
pierced Thy side, I have put Thee to death! I am not worthy to live,
far less to receive Thee. I deserve that the earth should swallow me,
that Heaven should hurl thunderbolts on my head, that all created
things should turn in anger upon me. But, O my God, how good Thou art!
How often have I trodden under foot Thy Blood, insulted Thy name,
dishonored Thy authority; yet not only dost Thou pardon me, but Thou
art the first to propose to be at peace with me; and for an act of
penitence, for one tear of grief and affection, Thou forgivest me all
my sins, Thou replacest me in Thy favor, and Thou makest me anew Thy
friend and Thy son. And this is God-----that it is that
is meant by God! Oh, how I rejoice when I think that Thou art God; that
is, infinite liberality, infinite magnanimity, infinite fidelity,
infinite love; an abyss of infinite glories, attributes, and
perfections! It suffices to say that Thou art good and in giving
Thyself to me Thou knowest how to ordain for Thy greater glory, and for
the greater good of my soul, even my very bygone sins. Glory to Thee!
Ah, I could wish to die of grief for having offended so good a God. I
am sorry that I have offended Thee! Forgive me, O my Lord. I do not
heed my own interest; I only desire that Thou, great God, shouldst be
honored and glorified by me, without ever being again offended by me.
Wash, O beloved Jesus, my soul with Thy blood, and make it become a fit
abode for Thy Divine Majesty. O most holy Mary, obtain for me tears of
My soul, thou art about to feed upon the blessed Body of Jesus. And
hast thou well considered what thou art, and who God is? If thou wert a
seraph of love, if thou hadst the love felt by all the Angels, the
virtues of all the Saints, wouldst thou even then be worthy of even
once receiving God?
An Act of Humility
Behold, O my Jesus, the hour is come when Thou shalt be put into the
power of this great sinner. O have patience with me; endure me by the
bowels of Thy compassion! Ah, Lord, Thou art that God before the
splendor of Whose holiness heaven and earth vanish into nothing. I
confess the truth, in looking at Thy Majesty and at my unworthiness; I
am so confounded and ashamed, that I should wish to hide myself in the
abyss of my own nothingness. Yes, I must needs approach to receive Thee,
for Thou incitest and commandest me, and like a son, I must obey Thee,
O my King. Let the seraphim make up, let the Saints make up, let Mary
make up-----above all, let Thine Own infinite goodness
make up for all my shortcomings in right devotion and love. O Lord, if
I do not deserve to receive Thee and to love Thee, Thou deservest to be
received and loved by me!
Dispose of me for Thine Own honor, make me worthy of so great a favor,
give me all that I am wanting in, make me altogether Thine.
The hour is come, my soul, the blessed moment is come, when thou hast
to receive thy dearest Jesus. Behold the King of kings, behold the Lord
of lords, behold the Friend, behold the Father, behold the Spouse,
behold the Joy of Paradise, behold the delight of Heaven, behold thy
God Himself, behold all the Most Holy Trinity in the Divine Sacrament! Ecce Sponsus venit, exite obviam ei.
"Behold the Bridegroom cometh; go forth to meet Him." (St. Matt. xxv.
6). But how, my soul, how standest thou thus so frozen, without one
burning desire to feed upon that Sacred Body? Ah! should not the
overflowing of the Divine compassion all enkindle thee with love? And
here Shepherd, guide me. Come, O my Father, my Spouse, my Treasure, my
Life, my Bliss, and my Rest. Come, Thou one end of all my longings.
Come, light of souls, refreshment of hearts, consoler of the sorrowing.
Come, Thou expected One of all nations, sighed for by the holy
patriarchs, desire of the eternal hills, joy of Angels, delight of
Heaven, beatitude of the Saints. Come, O my Paradise: come, for I
desire Thee, for I sigh after Thee. Come, art thou all frozen! If it
wert to do only once in all thy life, with what fervor wouldst thou not
do it! But now, while the Infinite Goodness waits ever ready at thy
pleasure, thou goest up so tepid, so dull of heart, to receive a God so
great! Enamoured souls have burned with desire of this Communion, and
have run like thirsty stags to that fount Divine. Up, up, my soul;
awake, kindle in thyself a
most ardent longing to receive Jesus; sigh after that Supremest Good,
desire Him, call on Him with tears and with sighs, and with a heart in
flames of holy love.
An Act of Desire
Come, O thou Divine food, and nourish my hungry soul. Come, furnace of
charity, and kindle me; come, flaming fire of love, inflame me by thy
flames. Come, heavenly for Thou hast wounded me with love; come, delay
not, for my heart is failing, and I feel that life would not be life
without Thee. Arise for pity, O my Jesus, and come.
Most holy Virgin, already I am at hand, and about to receive thine and
my Jesus. From thy hands I purpose to receive Him. Hold Him forth to
me, as thou didst to the shepherds, and the holy kings and to holy
Simeon. Prepare me to receive Him with love. Give Him to me quickly,
and pray to Him to fill me with His dearest benediction; and do thou
accompany it with thine.
An Act of Offering
I protest, O my God, that I purpose to unite this my Communion with the
Communion of most holy Mary, of Thy Apostles, of Thy Saints, and of all
the just who receive Thee this morning, or who shall ever receive Thee
in time to come. My desire and purpose is, to make all their devout
acts, all their preparations, all their thanksgivings; and I mean to
offer the whole in union with those virtues, that merit, that holiness,
with which Thou, O my Jesus, didst receive Thyself in the Sacrament, at
the Last Supper. May the Church triumphant and militant now supply my
defects of love, and worship, and thanks.
DEVOTIONS AFTER HOLY COMMUNION
Behold, my longings are fulfilled! Behold, my desires are
satisfied! Now hath my God come to visit me! Now Jesus dwelleth within
me! Now I am no longer my own but Christ's: I no longer live in myself,
but in Jesus, and Jesus lives in me. I am altogether the possession of Jesus, and Jesus is altogether mine.
O Infinite Goodness! A God-----the God of Heaven-----hath
touched the tongue, and come within the breast, and sought the heart of
a human creature, and one so vile, so unworthy as I am! My soul, of
what art thou thinking? Behold thyself now in possession of that for
which thou hast been sighing; behold thyself all hallowed by the
presence of Jesus, transformed into Jesus. Thou and Jesus art one. O
union true and wonderful! My soul, my soul, art thou thus closely
united to Jesus, and yet sayest nothing to Him, and speakest not with
thy God Who is in thine arms, within thy breast, at thy heart? Up, up,
arise, collect thyself, gather up all the affections of thy spirit;
adore Him, and say to Him:
O welcome, dearest Jesus, to the mansion of my soul. Oh, how long have
I desired this hour! But, oh, how I pity Thee, now that I see Thee
placed in this heart, more hard and cold than the stall where thou wast
born; a heart more full of what is grief and anguish to Thee than
Calvary was to Thy sacred flesh; for not once, but a hundred, and a
thousand times, have I renewed Thy death and Passion by my sins! Lord,
what dost Thou find in me but hardness and obduracy against Thee, and
affections all given to earthly things! Ah, my God, how is it Thou hast
come to dwell in me? I must cry out with St. Peter, Depart from me,
depart from me, O Majesty of God; depart from this soul of sin, which
is not worthy to harbor God; Exi a me, quia homo peccator sum, Domine.
(St. Luke v. 8). Go, and rest within those pure and fervent souls who
welcome Thee so tenderly. But, no, O my most precious blessing; no, let
it never be so; do not leave me, for if Thou art far from me, I am
lost. O God, my hope, I will not let Thee go! O blessing, for which I
have sighed, I press Thee to my heart, and I wish to live and die thus
embracing Thee. O most holy Mary, O Angels, Saints, and Souls that love
your God! lend me your affections, that I may fitly welcome and cherish
this presence of my Jesus.
Act of Thanksgiving
O Divine Trinity, one God, most worthy to be loved, I thank Thee
from the very depth of my heart, because Thou hast given me Jesus; I
thank Thee because Thou hast left me Jesus in the Sacrament; I thank
Thee for having caused me to receive Him; I thank Thee, my Jesus, that
Thou hast deigned to visit me. O God, what return can I make for so
much love! How can I thank Thee enough, O most holy Virgin, O Angels, O
Saints of Heaven, O all enamoured Souls, help me to thank our God, to
thank and thank Him again and again, for this infinite kindness. But, O
God, how little even is all this! The thanksgiving of all Paradise
cannot attain to be thanks sufficient to an infinite God, or recommend
Him for His benefits. What, then, shall I do? I know not, except, O my
most holy Jesus, to offer up Thine Own love itself in thanks for Thine
infinite love. May Thine infinite compassion, Thy kindness, and all the
abyss of Thine infinite attributes, render to Thee that honor and that
thank-offering which Thou deservest. O Most Holy Trinity, one God, I
thank Thee by the hands of Jesus; and do Thou, O Triune God, thank
Jesus for me! And now let my heart remain full, and let Thy Majesty
accept and be satisfied with these infinite thanks. O my Blessing, to
Thee alone be praise, glory, and honor from all creatures, forever and
What art thou doing, my soul? Dost thou know that now thou art a living
temple in which really dwells thy Redeemer? It is no time now for lying
slothful, and full of wandering thoughts. It is the time for asking all
the graces of which thou standest in need, and for receiving them from
the true and living God Who is dwelling within thee.
Now the heavens stand open, now the Most Holy Trinity, with eyes all
full of love, is above thee, looking down on the object of Its own
Christ, Who is within thy breast. Now more than ever Mary, and Angels,
and Saints, thy advocates, are beseeching graces for thee from God. My
soul, my soul, lose not of these precious moments; bend thy faculties
to deal with the great affair of thy eternal salvation. But how? Art
thou saying nothing to thy God? Ah, poor and miserable as thou art,
thou delightest to live on amid thy miseries, while thou hast with Thee
the God of all riches; and thou art silent, and thy mind begins already
to wander, and thou art so without desire of interest, so dull and so
idle of heart! Dost thou not know that if thou seekest not thou
obtainest not? Were a king to enter thy house and invite thee to ask
favors of him, wouldst thou be long silent? Ah, miserable race, through
our little faith! The King of kings, with His royal presence, is within
thee, the Lord of the heavenly treasures. A God-----thy God-----hath
come to thee, Who wishes to bestow great graces on thee and thou
speakest not a word! This Infinite Benignity grieves and laments that
His favors are not sought; and, unable longer to endure the languid and
indifference of men, forever longing to be kind to them and do them
good, He Himself takes to inviting them, and beseeches them to ask. Usque modo non petistis quidquam in nomine meo. Petite, et accipietis, ut gaudium vestrum sit plenum
(St. John XVI. 24). My soul, thou hast within thee a Lord omnipotent, a
most loving and munificent Father, a most faithful God: and of what art
thou afraid? Seek and confide, enlarge thy heart, revive thy faith;
begin, ask great graces-----heavenly graces, graces worthy of God.
Act of Petition
O my dear Redeemer, since Thou hast come to me, in order to confer
graces upon me, and invitest me to ask them of Thee, hear me now by the
bowels of Thy compassion. Give me, O my Jesus, an increase of living
faith, hope, charity, and contrition. Give me humility, purity,
patience, and all virtues; take from me all my corruptions. Change this
heart, so full of the world and of myself, and give me a new heart
conformed to Thy will, so that I may always seek Thy greater glory, and
that all its affections may aspire to Thee and aim only at Thy love,
without ever deviating even in the very least. Cor mundum crea in me Deus, et spiritum rectum innova in visceribus meis
(Ps. 1. 12). Grace is indeed a mighty gift, and though I merit it not,
Thou meritest it for me. From a great and glorious God great favors may
be sought; grant me this, then, which I have asked, by Thy Passion, by
Thy death; grant it by the love Thou bearest to the Eternal Father;
grant it me by the virtue of most holy Mary, by all the merits of the
Church triumphant and militant; grant it me because Thou art Thyself
infinite goodness and mercy.
Here apply yourself to ask with lively faith from God the graces and favors which are needful for yourself and your neighbor.
O Most Holy Trinity, O my omnipotent God, hear these my prayers. Now is
not the time to refuse graces even to the most unworthy, because it is
not I myself alone that am seeking them, but, together with me, Jesus
Christ is supplicating. Though I do not deserve to be heard, Jesus
Christ deserves it, Who prays with me, and in me, and for me. Eternal
Father, I call up before Thee the promises of Jesus Christ, Who hath
said that whatever graces we seek from Thee in His name, without any
other means, they shall be obtained from Thee: Amen amen, dico vobis, si quid petieritis Patrem in nomine meo, dabit vobis (St. John XVI. 23).
Act of Oblation
My Jesus, it is but justice and common gratitude that I should give
myself entirely to Thee, after Thou hast given Thyself entirely to me.
Thou hast, in coming to me, penetrated and made godlike all my being
with Thy Divinity, and so I ought henceforward to continue Thine. May
these eyes, renewed by Thee, continue Thine; may these ears, sanctified
by Thee, continue Thine; this taste, sanctified by Thee, may it be
Thine. Thou hast sanctified all my senses; may they be Thine, and so
may they never again take pleasure in opposition to Thy Divine Law.
Thou hast sanctified my memory; may it continually remember Thee. Thou
hast sanctified my will; may it never turn to love anything in
preference to Thee. Unto Thee, then, from the very depth of my heart, I
offer, as a perpetual holocaust, my body and my soul, my senses and my
faculties, all that I have and am, as fully as I can. Burn, O fire
Divine, bum and consume, O love omnipotent, all in me which is not
PORTRAIT OF THE TRUE CHRISTIAN
To know the Catholic religion, to respect it, to love it, to avoid
diligently that which it prohibits, to fulfill exactly that which it
To believe in God, to hope in Him, to love Him, to pray often to Him,
to thank Him, to praise Him, to adore Him, to fear Him, to submit
perfectly to Him.
To observe subordination, piety, justice, goodness, charity toward our superiors, or equals, and our inferiors.
To be humble, teachable, patient, modest, chaste, temperate, detached
from the world and from self, and to be occupied about our own
salvation, and the means of attaining it.
All this to be fulfilled with the intention of rendering glory to God,
in faithful imitation of Jesus Christ, His Son, our Lord, our Head, and
This is the portrait of a true Christian. Seek to make it your own.
ACT OF OBLATION TO BE MADE EVERY MORNING
Eternal God, and my God, behold me prostrate before Thine immense
Majesty, and humbly adoring Thee. I offer Thee all my thoughts, words,
and actions of this day. I purpose them all to be thought, spoken, and
done entirely for love of Thee, for Thy glory, to fulfill Thy Divine
will, to serve Thee, praise Thee, and bless Thee; in order also to my
own enlightenment in the mysteries of the holy Faith, for the securing
of my salvation, and out of hope in Thy loving mercy; for satisfaction,
too, of Thy Divine justice, for my so many and most grievous sins; as
supplication for the Holy Souls in Purgatory, and for the grace of a
true conversion to all sinners; in fine, I wish and intend to do
everything in union with the most pure intentions of Jesus and Mary
during their lives on earth, of all the Saints who are in Heaven, and
of all the just who are on earth: and I would willingly subscribe to
this my intention with my own blood, and to repeat it from a loving
heart, as often as there are moments in eternity. Receive, O my dearest
God, this my good intention; give me Thy holy benediction with
efficacious grace to keep me from mortal sin through all my life, but
particularly this day, in which I desire and purpose to receive all the
Indulgences which I am capable of receiving, and to assist, were it
possible, at all the Masses which are celebrated this day throughout
the whole world, applying all in supplication for the Holy Souls in
Purgatory, that they may be freed from detention in its pains and come
quickly before the face of God. So be it.
ACT OF SUPPLICATION TO OBTAIN OF GOD THE GENERAL PARDON OF SINS
AND EVERY OTHER GIFT CONSISTENT WITH ETERNAL SALVATION
O my omnipotent God, Who art infinite in all Thy admirable
attributes, but art especially rich in compassion, and art ever urged
by that love of Thine, by which Thou so liberally grantest what we
humbly and with lively faith petition for; Who art also faithful-----oh, yes, most faithful-----in
fulfilling Thy promises, I, Thy miserable creature, in order to obtain
the grace of a general pardon of my sins, and the supply of all my
other necessities, declare my firm belief that Thou art able, and art
willing, and knowest how to grant me so great a grace. And, together
with this faith, I hope with a most firm reliance, efficacious desire,
certain confidence, and unhesitating trust, that Thou wilt grant it to
me. With this true and firm confidence, which I repose in Thee and in
Thy promises, I hope and wish for this perfect pardon, this very moment
in which I am humbly beseeching it, in which I am here sighing that my
soul may be purified from all the stains of my grievous sins. These
sins I abominate and detest from pure love of Thee, and because they
are opposed to Thy supreme perfection and goodness.
My God, my God, be moved to compassion. I ask of Thee with a holy
courage, founded on the infinite merits of my Lord Jesus Christ, which
merits through Thy great loving kindness have become mine, that Thou
wouldst permit me to apply to my soul the grace of a thorough and
intimate pardon of my sins; I ask it, and I trust indeed to get the
grace which I ask. And since a grace so glorious as that of the pardon
of sin tends and is ordained to Thy greater glory, as well as the
spiritual good of my soul, I believe, I trust through Thy most loving
fidelity, justice, omnipotence, and benignity, that Thou dost will,
even at this very time, to grant it me; while I, as Thy poor creature,
do hereby accept of it, and with my whole will take it to myself for
pure love of Thee. O my God, before Whose face I stand, I protest that
I am determined never more to sin, and I most humbly beseech Thee that
now, having granted the general pardon of my sins, Thou wouldst chain
all evil spirits in the depth of the abyss, so as never more to have
the courage nor the power to draw away either me or others from Thy
See me now, my dearest God, free, as I hope, from the bonds of my
hateful sins. Animated by this sweet hope, I trust to live and die in
the arms of Thy Divine compassion. That compassion I will invoke every
moment. Every moment I mean that this blessed petition for pardon of
past sin, and for help never more to sin, shall be renewed; my will and
wish is that it should go on forever, my mouth uttering from my heart
those most sweet words:
O my Jesus, compassion! Compassion, O my Jesus!
I wish to live with these blessed words upon my tongue, and to die with
these holy words stamped upon my heart. I wish to say them a hundred,
and a thousand times a day.
Compassion, O my Jesus! O my Jesus, compassion!
RULES FOR LIVING WELL
He who desires to be saved, lives according to rule, and
establishes an arrangement of his time with a view to devotional
exercises. Dearest reader, if you wish to maintain yourself in the
grace of God, never abandon these brief exercises which I now propose
Choose for yourself a good confessor, to whom you may confide the
treasure of your soul. Go often to him, to give an account of your
conscience, and do not change him by mere caprice or fickleness.
Every morning offer to the Lord all the good works of that day, all its
labors and sufferings, and all your actions, in union with the merits
of Jesus Christ.
Offer all your actions to the Most Holy Trinity, to Mary, ever Virgin,
and to all the blessed of Heaven, in suffrage for the Souls in
Form the intention to gain the Indulgences obtainable by prayer or act during the whole day.
Avoid sloth, bad company, dangerous conversations, and games;
remembering that time passes and never returns, that you have a soul,
and that if you lose your soul, you lose all.
When as yet scarcely awake, give your very first thought to God; while
dressing keep reciting vocal prayers, and recommend yourself to God-----then
say upon your knees: "Most Holy Trinity, I believe that Thou art
present with me; and I adore Thee. I thank Thee for having preserved me
during the past night; I offer to Thee all my actions. My God, my love,
Goodness Infinite, and worthy of all love, assist me this day; keep me
free from sins and dangers; hold Thy hands above me, and preserve me
from betraying Thee.
Then say three Glorias to the Most Holy Trinity, one Pater to Jesus, three Aves to Mary, and beseech her to guard you under her mantle; offer all your senses and faculties to Jesus and Mary.
Act of Faith
O my God, Infallible Truth, I believe all that Holy Church teaches,
because Thou hast revealed it. I believe in the Most Holy Trinity,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, three Persons, and one God, Who punishes
the wicked, and rewards the good. I believe that the eternal Son of God
made Himself man, and died to save my soul; that He rose again from the
dead, exists in Heaven, and in the Most Blessed Sacrament; bears the
name Jesus Christ; is the Judge of the living and the dead; and that it
is He Who instituted the holy Sacraments as means of pardon and
sanctification. I thank Thee that Thou hast made me a Catholic. Grant
me the grace that I may live and die entirely Thine, and ever
exclaiming, O blessed faith of Jesus Christ!
Act of Hope
My God, my hope, my ever faithful God, mighty and compassionate,
trusting in Thy promises, I hope to obtain from Thee, through the Blood
of Jesus Christ, the pardon of my sins, the virtues of sanctity, and
the glories of Paradise.
Act of Charity
My God, my love, Father, and Spouse of my soul, Supreme and Infinite
Good, I love Thee with my whole heart, because Thou art worthy of all
love. I love Thee more than my life, and for love of Thee I love my
neighbor as myself. O God, would that I could love Thee as the seraphs
love Thee. Would that I were able at the cost of my blood, to make all
the world to know and to love Thee.
Act of Contrition
O God, my beloved, Thou hast created me to love and to serve
Thee, and I, ungrateful, have done nothing but offended Thee. I am
confounded; I repent. Infinite Goodness, would that I had never
offended Thee! Would that I might die of sorrow! Pardon me, my Jesus,
by the Blood which Thou hast shed for me! I promise to love Thee
forever, and never to repulse Thee by sin again.
Then make a half-hour's mental prayer, or at least during quarter of an
hour, upon the Passion of Jesus, and upon the last things, death and
Never omit to hear holy Mass every morning [It is not always possible,
given the modern situation, unknown when the Saint wrote this treatise------the Web Master.]. It is an infinite treasure, and will be infinitely profitable to you.
Afterward you will go to your affairs, often recalling your thoughts to God, Who is ever present beside you.
At table give a thought to God, and act upon the resolution of eating
in order to live and serve your God. Practise some little mortification
at each meal. Then thank the Lord.
In the Course of each Day
Give a short time to prayer; visit the Most Holy Sacrament and
our Blessed Lady. Read some devout book, and do some good to your
neighbor. Recite five Paters, Aves, and Glorias
to the wounds of Jesus, and beseech Him to pardon your sins, remove
your corruptions, and bestow upon you virtues; that He may grant you
perseverance, and fit you for Paradise. Repeat also three Paters, Aves, and Glorias
to the Most Holy Trinity, with three acts of love, in gratitude for the
graces granted to Mary, to the Saints, and to yourself. Recite devoutly
the third part of the most holy Rosary, with Litanies.
When you meet acquaintances, use for salutation, All praise to Jesus
Christ and Mary! and in reply, Forever! You will thus gain many
In the midst of your work or business, lift up your mind from time to
time to that God Who is ever present with you. Collect your thoughts,
and with some short prayers recommend yourself often to Him.
If you are head of a family, collect your household. Join with
them in prayers for a short time, and then say the most holy Rosary
with them. Before going to bed, examine your conscience thus:
1. Place yourself in the presence of God, and thank Him for all the
benefits received from Him, more especially those of the bygone day.
2. Entreat for light to know your sins, and for graces whereby to amend.
3. Examine yourself as to the sins of the day.
4. Ask pardon of God with all your heart, and promise never more to
offend Him, and to fly from all the occasions which have proved
themselves most dangerous to you.
5. Pray to the Lord to protect you during the coming night, and offer every breath you draw as an aspiration to Jesus.
6. Repeat three Aves to Mary, and a Pater in honor of your Angel Guardian. Repeat the acts of Faith, Hope, Charity, and Contrition, already given.
Sleep with some holy picture or image near you.
Let no worldly thought enter or remain in your mind. If you wake, pray to Jesus, and invoke Mary.
Receive with all devotion the Most Holy Sacrament. Give a sincere
account of your conscience to your spiritual Father. Frequent some
devout congregation or confraternity of Mary. Fast or practise some
abstinence beyond the law of the Church on Friday or Saturday.
Choose some of the Saints, or some choir of Angels, for special
advocates during it. Select some special virtue in which particularly
to exercise yourself. Go into retirement during one day, in order
particularly to revise and probe your conscience. Undertake to discover
your dominant passion, and lay down for yourself particular methods for
overcoming it. Prepare during that day for dying well; arrange for the
departure of your soul; make a most exact confession, and all those
solemn protests of entire submission, devoted resignation, of generous
confidence, of ardent desire, of prostrate penitence, of faith, of
hope, of charity, and all the supernatural acts of the soul, which
befit the dying Catholic.
Go through the spiritual exercises during eight days, attending
only to God and your soul. Make a general confession, and determine on
the details of a more effective pursuit of a holy course of life during
the remainder of your days on earth.
ST. LEONARD, PRAY FOR US.