Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Saturday 16 January |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Giuseppe Antonio Tovini
home iconSpirituality
line break icon

This prayer of St. Ephrem perfectly summarizes the spirit of Lent

SAINT EPHRAM THE SYRIAN

Public Domain | Wikipedia

Philip Kosloski - published on 03/10/19

Many Christians around the world pray this prayer every day of Lent.

For Eastern Christians, the liturgical season of “Great Lent” is punctuated throughout with the ancient prayer of St. Ephrem the Syrian. Ephrem was a holy and devoted hermit who lived in the 4th century and composed a variety of prayers and hymns to God.

One of them has been used by Orthodox and Byzantine Christians for many centuries during penitential liturgies. In particular, it is used during weekday liturgical services of Lent, and many believe it perfectly summarizes the spirit of Lent.

The prayer begins by asking God to take away various sins, replacing them with corresponding virtues. This is a very important part of Lent, as Lent is not a season entirely focused on purging oneself of sins, but should also bring a person closer to practicing virtue.

St. Ephrem also asks God to reveal his own sins, while not judging the sins of others. Lent is a time for interior renewal, when we do not seek to change others, but only to change ourselves.

Below is a popular English translation of the prayer, which was originally written in the Syriac language.

O Lord and Master of my life, take from me the spirit of sloth, despair, lust of power, and idle talk.But give rather the spirit of chastity, humility, patience, and love to Thy servant.Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see my own transgressions, and not to judge my brother, for blessed art Thou, unto ages of ages. Amen.
Tags:
LentPrayers for a Particular Need
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
DAD, HOW DO I?
Cerith Gardiner
Meet the dad who's teaching basic skills on Y...
FORGIVING COUPLE
Bret Thoman, OFS
An exorcist teaches 4 steps to forgive
Philip Kosloski
What is the Holy Cloak of St. Joseph?
LUXOR FILM FESTIVAL
Zoe Romanowsky
20-year-old filmmaker wins award for powerful...
Kathleen N. Hattrup
Why God loves ordinary stuff: Pope Francis' r...
POPE FRANCIS; Ash Wednesday
Kathleen N. Hattrup
Vatican: Imposition of ashes on Ash Wednesday...
D'CRUZ FAMILY
Cerith Gardiner
Meet the family of 12 siblings with a very sp...
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.