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What Prayers Do You Say Before and After Communion? CHNetwork Community Question

August 21, 2017 7 Comments

In addition to the set prayers in the liturgy at Mass, there’s a great tradition of prayers, spontaneous and written, that Catholics have been using before Mass, as well as during and after Communion, to try to enter more deeply into the mystery of Christ’s presence.  Some parishes have a public rosary before Mass, and some pray the prayer to St. Michael at the end of Mass, but a lot of prayer offered before and after the liturgy is conducted privately, and at the discretion of the individual worshipper.

Do you have prayers that you’ve adopted as your own to use before and after Mass, that have developed personal meaning for you?  Here’s what some of our readers and members shared:

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“I spent 40 years of my adult life in a vibrant Evangelical church before returning to my natal Catholic roots of faith. It may sound crazy, but I approach Communion singing ” Nothing but the Blood of Jesus” with holiness and gratitude.”

Diane P., via Facebook

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I generally use (prayers composed by St. Thomas Aquinas) before and after Communion.  As I process up the aisle to receive, I also often silently recite (or silently sing) ‘Just As I Am’ as well. It’s a residual effect of my Protestant heritage I suppose, but the words still seem very fitting to me.

Greg Westwood (Read his conversion story: Unto the House of the Lord)

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“At the consecration, I always say silently: ‘My Lord and My God’ to confirm my faith in the Real Presence. In the pew before Communion and as I walk up the aisle to receive, I usually ask that the spritual veil be lifted from my mind, to the extent that is the Lord’s will, so that my internal sense will be alert and alive to the reality of what is about to happen and Who I am about to receive. I have never had a standard prayer of thanksgiving after communion, but I have recently discovered the ‘Stay With Me’ prayer of St. Padre Pio.”

John S., via Facebook

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“As the priest lifts up Jesus’ Precious Body and Precious Blood: ‘Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ. You have given us Your Precious Body as everlasting Food; You have given us Your Precious Blood as life-saving Drink’. Before receiving and while in the Communion line, I pray the Act of Contrition. After receiving Our Lord, I pray: ‘My Lord and My God’. Then, I read the Communion antiphons and other prayers.”

Deborah W., via Facebook

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“‘Lord, create in me a new heart and cast me in your image, cell by cell, pixel by pixel, until I reflect you perfectly.’

Cheesy, I know, but that’s what I pray!”

Jennie Fraser, CHNetwork Community Forum Moderator

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“During the consecration when the bells are rung, I pray, ‘Thank you Jesus for coming into the world an infant as I, You without sin, I a sinner but Your beloved. I adore and love you.’ At the second bell I pray ‘Thank you Lord for dying on the cross and then rising for me! A sinner but your beloved, I adore you and love you!'”

Karen G., via Facebook

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“Before Mass: ‘Dear God please do not let me be distracted or be a distraction. Help me to be silent after receiving you. Thank you for my being born in a country where I can attend Mass without persecution, please continue to bless this nation in that way. I love you, I thank you, I am yours.’  After Communion,  the Anima Christi and struggle to be silent and just be with Christ.”

Brenda M., via Facebook

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What about you?  What personal prayers and devotions have you developed for before and after Communion?  Please share in the comments below!

  • Javier Garcia-Julve

    I adopted St. Padre Pio’s because it asks for the best and goes to the most important points:

    Stay with me, Lord, for it is necessary to have You present so as not to forget You. You know how easily I abandon You.

    Stay with me, Lord, because I am weak and I need Your strength, that I may not fall so often.

    Stay with me, Lord, for You are my life, and without You, I am without fervor.

    Stay with me, Lord, for You are my light, and without You, I am in darkness.

    Stay with me, Lord, to show me Your will.

    Stay with me, Lord, so that I hear Your voice and follow You.

    Stay with me, Lord, for I desire to love You, and always be in Your company.

    Stay with me, Lord, if You wish me to be faithful to You.

    Stay with me, Lord, for as poor as my soul is, I want it to be a place of consolation for You, a nest of love.

    Stay with me, Jesus, for it is getting late and the day is coming to a close, and life passes; death, judgment, eternity approaches. It is necessary to renew my strength, so that I will not stop along the way and for that, I need You.

    It is getting late and death approaches, I fear the darkness, the temptations, the dryness, the cross, the sorrows. O how I need You, my Jesus, in this night of exile!

    Stay with me tonight Jesus, in life with all its dangers. I need You.

    Let me recognize You as Your disciples did at the breaking of the bread, so that the Eucharistic Communion be the Light which disperses the darkness, the force which sustains me, the unique joy of my heart.

    Stay with me, Lord, because at the hour of my death, I want to remain united to You, if not really by the Holy Communion, at least personally by grace and love.

    Stay with me, Lord, for it is You alone I look for, Your Love, Your Grace, Your Will, Your Heart, Your Spirit, because I love You and ask no other reward but to love You with ever a greater love, a sound, practical love. I will love You with all my heart while on earth and continue to love You perfectly during all eternity. Amen.

  • Brandon Fang

    Before: As an Ordinariate Catholic, when at a Novus Ordo mass, I pray the “Prayer of Humble Access” from the Ordinariate Use Missal after “Lord I am not worthy…”. It has been one of my standards that I have prayed for years in its Methodist and Anglican forms at Communion services. When at an Ordinariate Use Mass, nothing else is needed.
    After: Anima Christi, the day’s Communion Antiphon, one of St Thomas Aquinas’ prayers in the Missal. Or just an extempore prayer on the spot for the great blessing I have just received in receiving His Body, Blood, Soul & Divinity.

  • Rosemary Amend

    I still pray part of the Prayer After Communion that I learned while I was an Episcopalian:

    “Eternal God, heavenly Father,
    you have graciously accepted us as living members
    of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ….”
    “Send us now into the world in peace,
    and grant us strength and courage
    to love and serve you with gladness and singleness of heart;
    through Christ our Lord. Amen.”

    I also sometimes pray the prayers of St. Thomas Aquinas others have mentioned here.

  • Mike, New Jersey

    I like the prayer from the Chaplet of Divine Mercy.
    Eternal Father, I offer you the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved son, our Lord, Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.
    Where does that fit better than while receiving His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity.

  • Terry

    I ask, “please help me understand.” I’m on the journey and I’m trying to make since of it all.

  • Donna Smith

    I don’t remember where I got this, but as a convert, I have always said, at the consecration of the Body–My Lord and my God, and Help Thou my unbelief. And at the consecration of the Blood–Praise and thanks to Thee Lord Jesus Christ.

  • Nancy Tremblay Ontario Canada

    At the consecration following my acknowledgment of “My Lord and My God” I frequently use the Fatima prayer “Lord I believe, I adore You, I hope in You and I love You etc. On my way to receive the Eucharist, I pray “Lord, .let not this sacrament which I though unworthy am about to receive, turn to my judgement and condemnation, but through your mercy may it become a safeguard, an effective remedy for me and for all whom I offer it” (I think this prayer may have been prayed during mass at one time?) As a rule, I also offer other short prayers of petition and praise and thanksgiving.

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