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Saint of the Day: St. John I
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These vesting prayers before Mass remind priests of their unique vocation


Airman Magazine | CC BY-NC 2.0

Philip Kosloski - published on 09/26/18

And ask God for strength to remain faithful to their vows.

Before a priest celebrates Mass, he will typically pray a set of “vesting prayers” to spiritually prepare for Mass. While these prayers are no longer obligatory, the Vatican explains how “their use is recommended since they help in the priest’s preparation and recollection before the celebration of the Eucharistic sacrifice.”

Even more so, the vesting prayers call to mind the particular vows that a priest professes on the day of his ordination and asks God for strength to remain faithful to them.

These prayers are prayed before putting on the various liturgical vestments to celebrate Mass and is a quiet and hidden action that the laity rarely ever see. While the prayers aren’t used by the laity, they can help men and women in the pew understand the great symbolism behind each vestment and why these ancient articles of clothing are used for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Washing hands

Give strength to my hands, Lord, to wipe away all stain, so that I may be able to serve Thee in purity of mind and body.


Lord, set the helmet of salvation on my head to fend off all the assaults of the devil.


Make me white, O Lord, and cleanse my heart; that being made white in the Blood of the Lamb I may deserve an eternal reward.

Read more:
Why do priests wear white albs?


Gird me, O Lord, with the cincture of purity, and quench in my heart the fire of concupiscence, that the virtue of continence and chastity may abide in me.

Maniple (Note: This particular vestment is not always used)

May I deserve, O Lord, to bear the maniple of weeping and sorrow in order that I may joyfully reap the reward of my labors.


Lord, restore the stole of immortality, which I lost through the collusion of our first parents, and, unworthy as I am to approach Thy sacred mysteries, may I yet gain eternal joy.


Read more:
Why do priests (and deacons) wear a stole?


O Lord, who has said, “My yoke is sweet and My burden light,” grant that I may so carry it as to merit Thy grace.


Read more:
Why do priests wear a chasuble at Mass? And what’s a chasuble?

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