For the Afflicted and Distressed

O Lord,
we bring you
the troubles and perils
of peoples and nations,
the sighing of prisoners and captives,
the sorrows of the bereaved,
the needs of strangers,
the helplessness of the weak,
the tiredness of the weary,
the failing powers of the aged.
O Lord, draw near to each;
for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Source: Anselm of Canterbury, 11th century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954.

 

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For Pardon, Grace, and Guidance

O God,
source of every good and perfect gift,
shed abroad the cheering light of your sevenfold grace over our hearts.
Yes, Spirit of love and gentleness,
help us.
You know our faults, our failings, our needs,
the dullness of our understanding,
the waywardness of our affections,
the perverseness of our will.
When we neglect to practice what we know,
be gracious to us.
Enlighten our minds,
make right our desires,
correct our wanderings,
and pardon our omissions,
so that by your guidance
we may be preserved from making shipwreck of faith,
and keep a good conscience,
at length arrive safe in the haven of eternal rest;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Source: Anselm of Canterbury, 11th century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954.

 

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A Prayer for Love

O blessed Lord, you have commanded us to love one another. Just as we have received your undeserved blessings, may we love everyone in you and for you.

We ask your kindness for all, but especially for the friends whom your love has given to us. Love them, O fountain of love, and move them to love you with all their heart, that they may will, and speak, and do only those things which are pleasing to you.

Our prayer is cold, because our love is so feeble, but you are rich in mercy. Do not measure your goodness to them by the dullness of our devotion, but as your kindness surpasses all human affection, so let your hearing transcend our prayer. Do what is best for them, according to your will, that being ruled and protected by you always and everywhere, they may receive eternal life in the end; to you, with the Father and the Holy Spirit, be all honor and praise for ever and ever. Amen.

Source: St. Anselm, eleventh century Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954.

Variant:

O blessed Lord, who hast commanded us to love one another, grant us grace that having received thine undeserved bounty, we may love everyone in thee and for thee. We implore thy clemency for all; but especially for the friends whom thy love has given to us. Love thou them, O thou fountain of love, and make them to love thee with all their heart, that they may will, and speak, and do those things only which are pleasing to thee.

 

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A Prayer of St. Anselm on Desiring and Loving God

O Lord our God,
grant us grace to desire you with our whole heart,
that so desiring we may seek and find you;
and so finding you we may love you;
and loving you we may hate those sins
from which you have redeemed us;
for the sake of Jesus Christ.

Source: St. Anselm of Canterbury, d. 1109

Source: St. Anselm, eleventh century
Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954.

A longer version of this prayer can be found here.

 

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