In my first “Prayer by Prayer” post (Link), I shared three prayers that I wanted to learn in different languages. This became my special project for the month of June. And it was so successful that I want to do something similar for July . . . and for every month of my life! Expect a new “Prayer by Prayer” challenge every first Sunday of the month.
But before I present the July Plan, I want to share the June Report.
Month by Month: June
The easiest prayer to memorize last month was Sancte Michael Archangele (Latin) — and all I did was read it from my missal after every Mass! I can recite it easily now, but it is still challenging to say it in Latin when others are saying it in English. (For contrast, I can easily pray the Hail Mary in German although others around me are saying it in Latin.) One reason is that the Latin version and English version have slightly different arrangements. Here is one direct comparison between two lines:
English: “O Prince of the Heavenly Hosts, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits . . .”
Latin: “Princeps militiae cælestis, satanam aliosque spiritus malignos . . . divina virtute, in infernum detrude.”
The Tischgebet vor dem Essen (German) was also easy. I quickly picked up the antiphon “Aller Augen warten auf Dich . . .” and the actual blessing “Segne uns, O Herr . . .” What was harder to remember was a third part that goes, “Zum Gastmahl des ewigen Lebens führe uns der König der ewigen Herrlichkeit” (May the king of everlasting glory lead us to the banquet of everlasting life).
Finally, I memorized all the words of the Ó meu Jesus Fatima Prayer (Portuguese) . . . but whenever I play the recording again, I hear how terrible my accent still is. If I really want to work on this, I can train my ears with a recording like Terço do Rosario – Mystérios Gloriosos (Link).
I will continue to say all these prayers in July, along with the three new ones below.
July’s Latin: All Leonine Prayers after Low Mass
One prayer leads to another. The St. Michael Prayer is only one of several that Pope Leo XIII recommended the faithful to say after low Mass. Now that I have memorized it, I have only one more Leonine prayer to learn in Latin:
Deus, refúgium nostrum et virtus, pópulum ad te clamántem propítius réspice: Et, intercedénte gloriósa et immaculáta Virgine Die Genitríce Maria, cum beáto Joseph, ejus Sponso, ac beátis Apóstolis tuis Petro et Paulo et ómnibus Sanctis; quas pro conversióne pecatórum pro libertáte et exaltatióne sanctæ Matris Ecclésiæ preces effúndimus, miséricors et benígnus exáudi. Per eúndem Christum, Dóminum nostrum. Amen.
Again, my plan is simply to do what I always do, with a twist. I already pray this after low Mass, in English, so all I have to do is switch to Latin. It will be as easy as last month’s switch of the St. Michael Prayer from English to Latin — as before, all I need to do is read the text in the missal that I already bring everwhere I go!
July’s German: Gebet nach dem Essen
Now that I know the prayer before meals, I should learn the prayer after meals. This is the text in my antique Gebet- und Gesangbuch:
Wir sagen dir Dank, allmächtiger Gott, für alle deine Wohltaten, der du lebst und herrschest von Ewigkeit zu Ewigkeit. Amen.
Lasset uns beten. Vergilt, o Herr, in Güte allen denen, die uns um deines heiligen Namens willen Gutens tun, und schenke ihnen das ewige Leben. Amen. Und die Seelen der verstorbenen Gläubigen mögen durch die Barmherzigkeit Gottes ruhren im Frieden. Amen.
As before, this will be a simple extension of the June prayer project. Last month, I moved my prayer book in the dining room so that I could read it before meals. This month, it will stay where it is so I can also read it after meals.
July’s Portuguese: Ó Jesus, é por Vosso amor . . .
For the “Prayer by Prayer” monthly challenge, “Tourist Portuguese” is also “Pilgrim Portuguese.” If I did go on a pilgrimage to Portugal, I would visit the Cova da Ira, where Our Lady of Fatima appeared to the three shepherd children. And to prepare for that visit, I would learn all the Fatima Prayers in Portuguese.
The same day that the children heard Ó meu Jesus for the first time, they also learned how to offer their sacrifices for reparation. Our Lady herself taught them the following prayer:
Ó Jesus, é por Vosso amor, pela conversão dos pecadores e em reparação pelos pecados cometidos contra o Imaculado Coração de Maria!
As in June, the Portuguese prayer is the most challenging one in my July project. This one will be harder than June’s Ó meu Jesus because I don’t have a special moment in my routine for sacrifices. The Leonine Prayers are for after Mass; the Tischgebete, before and after meals; and the Ó me Jesus, after each decade of the rosary. But sacrifices can happen any time of day.
I guess I can add Ó Jesus, e por Vosso amor to my morning offering. After I memorize it, I can remember it at other appropriate times.