Words from the New Testament

Jesus says: Come to me all that labour and are heavy laden, and I will refresh you.
Matthew 11:28

God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that all who believe in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
John 3:16

I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me shall never be hungry and whoever believes in me shall never be thirsty.
John 6:35


Words from the Old Testament (Hebrew Scriptures)

How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts!

My soul has a desire and longing to enter the courts of the Lord;
my heart and my flesh rejoice in the living God.

The sparrow has found her a house
and the swallow a nest where she may lay her young:
at your altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God.

Blessed are they who dwell in your house:
they will always be praising you.

Blessed are those whose strength is in you,
In whose heart are the highways to Zion,

Who going through the barren valley find there a spring,
and the early rains will clothe it with blessing.

They will go from strength to strength
and appear before God in Zion.

O Lord God of hosts, hear my prayer;
listen, O God of Jacob.

Behold our defender, O God,
and look upon the face of your anointed.

For one day in your courts
is better than a thousand.

I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God
than dwell in the tents of ungodliness.

For the Lord God is both sun and shield;
he will give grace and glory;
and no good thing shall the Lord withhold
from those who walk with integrity.

O Lord God of hosts,
blessed are those who put their trust in you.  Psalm 84


He will feed his flock like a shepherd;
he will gather the lambs in his arms,
and carry them in his bosom,
and gently lead the mother sheep. Isaiah 40:11


from Saint Patrick’s Breastplate

Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me,

Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.


Prayer of Saint Richard of Chichester

Thanks be to you, our Lord Jesus Christ,
for all the benefits which you have given us,
for all the pains and insults which you have borne for us.
Most merciful Redeemer, Friend and Brother,
may we know you more clearly,
love you more dearly,
and follow you more nearly,
day by day.


God be in my Head  from Sarum (Salisbury) Primer

God be in my head, and in my understanding;
God be in mine eyes, and in my looking;
God be in my mouth, and in my speaking;
God be in my heart, and in my thinking;
God be at mine end, and at my departing.


A Prayer of Saint Ignatius of Loyola  (Suscipe)

Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty,
my memory, my understanding,
and my entire will,
All I have and call my own.

You have given all to me.
To you, Lord, I return it.

Everything is yours; do with it what you will.
Give me only your love and your grace,
that is enough for me.


For Family and Friends

Heavenly Father,
watch over those we love.
Remove all anxious fears from them.
Teach us to know that you are always near,
and that we are one in you for ever;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.


For Peace of Mind

Almighty God,
you know our anxieties and fears.
Help me to cast all my cares on you,
and to know that you love me.
Give me peace of mind, and sure trust in you,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.


In Time of Illness or Pain

Lord Jesus Christ,
be near me in my time of weariness and pain
and sustain me by your grace.
Heal me according to your will,
and hold me in eternal life, my Lord and my God.


For a Sick Child

Lord Jesus Christ,
you took children in your arms and blessed them.
Hold – in your love.
Fill – with your peace.
Heal – according to your will;
for your name’s sake.


Before Treatment or Surgery

Lord Jesus,
by the loneliness of your suffering on the cross
be near to me in my need.
Banish my fears, increase my faith;
hold me in your love and fill me with your peace;
For your name’s sake.


 For Doctors, Nurses and all who Share in Healing

Almighty God,
we pray you to continue Christ’s healing work
in our hospitals and homes.
Give skill, understanding and sympathy
to all who minister to the sick,
and strengthen them in their work of mercy.

Thanksgiving after Treatment or Surgery

Merciful Lord,
Your compassion does not fail,
and your mercies are new every morning.
We thank you that you have given
Relief from pain and hope of renewed health.
Continue your gracious work of healing
and restore…to health, serve you in gratitude and joy;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.


For an Elderly Person

All praise and glory are yours, O Lord our God,
for you have called us to serve you in love.
Bless all who have grown old in your service.
Strengthen your servant…with your Holy Spirit,
and keep him/her firm and serene in hope;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Evening Prayers

Lighten our darkness, O Lord, we pray;
and in your great mercy defend us
from all perils and dangers of this night;
for the love of your only Son,
our Saviour Jesus Christ.   Anglican Office of Evening Prayer


Be with us, merciful God, and protect us
through the silent hours of this night,
that we, who are wearied
by the changes and chances of this fleeting world
may rest upon your eternal changelessness;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.   Anglican Office of Compline (Night Prayer)


Save us, O Lord, while waking,
and guard us while sleeping,
that awake we may watch with Christ
and asleep we may rest in peace.   Compline


O Lord,
support us all the day long
until the shades lengthen, and the evening comes,
and the busy world is hushed,
the fever of life is over,
and our work is done.
Then, Lord, in your mercy grant us safe lodging,
a holy rest, and peace at the last;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Saint John Henry Newman


The Seasons of our Lives

Jenny Child

Creator God, in the springtime of our lives,
you give us the enthusiasm and daring of youth.
In the summer of our lives,
you encourage us to reach our full potential.
In the autumn of our lives,
you walk beside us as we reflect on years gone by
In the winter of our lives,
you enfold us in your love which will never let us go.
When the seasons of our lives are past,
you clothe us with resurrection bodies
which will live forever.


Comings and goings
Jenny Child

In our coming and going,
guide us,
in our living and our being,
protect us,
in our seeing and our hearing,
enrich us,
in our thinking and our speaking,
inspire us,
in our arriving and our departing,
preserve us.


Other Sources

Wild Geese

Mary Oliver

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.

Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.

Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting —
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.


The Present Moment

Thich Nhat Hanh (Buddhist Monk)

We can smile, breathe, walk, and eat our meals in a way that allows us to be in touch with the abundance of happiness that is available. We are very good at preparing to live, but not very good at living. We know how to sacrifice ten years for a diploma, and we are willing to work very hard to get a job, a car, a house, and so on.

But we have difficulty remembering that we are alive in the present moment, the only moment there is for us to be alive.

Every breath we take, every step we make, can be filled with peace, joy, and serenity.

We need only to be awake, alive in the present moment.


God is Awake

Victor Hugo

Have courage for the great sorrows of life, and patience for the small ones. When you have laboriously accomplished your daily tasks, go to sleep in peace. God is awake.



Paul Gallico

A prayer may be a wordless inner longing, a sudden outpouring of love, a yearning within the soul to be for a moment united within the infinite and the good, a humbleness that needs no abasement or speech to express it, a cry in the darkness for help when all seems lost, a song, a poem, a kind deed, a reaching for beauty, or the strong, quiet inner reaffirmation of faith. A prayer in fact can be anything that is created by God that turns to God.