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The Imitation of Christ

Prayer Before Receiving Holy Communion

by Thomas A. Kempis

Lord, all that is Heaven and on earth is Yours.

1. I wish to offer myself up to You as a voluntary sacrifice and to remain always Yours.

Lord, in the simplicity of my heart, I offer myself to You today as a perpetual servant, for a homage and sacrifice of eternal praise to You.

Receive me with this holy oblation of Your precious Body, which I offer to You this day, in the presence of Your Angels, invisible assistants, that it may be a salvation for me and for all the people.

2. Lord, I offer to You upon Your altar of propitiation all my sin and offences, which I have committed in Your presence and in that of Your holy Angels, from the first day that I was capable of sin until the present so that You may burn them and consume them all with the fire of Your charity, and cancel all the stains of my sins, and purify my conscience of every fault and restore me Your grace, which I have lost by sinning, fully pardoning me all, and mercifully receiving me in the kiss of peace.

3. What can I do with my sins except humbly confess them, and weep for them, and constantly implore Your pardon.

Mercifully hear me, I beseech You, 0 my God, while I am in Your presence.

All my sins greatly displease me, I wish never to commit them anymore; but I am sorry for them, and will repent of them for as long as I live, and am ready to do penance and to make satisfaction for them as much as I am able.

Forgive me, 0 my God, forgive me my sins for Your Holy Name; save my soul, which You have redeemed with Your precious Blood.

Behold, I consign myself to Your mercy; I abandon myself into Your hands.

Deal with Your servant according to Your goodness, not according to my sins and faults.

4. I offer also to You all the good which I have done, though it is very little and imperfect; so that it may please You to purify it and sanctify it; render it pleasing to Your eyes and worthy of being presented to You; and it may please You to perfect it ever more; and, moreover, guide me, who am a lazy and humble wretch, to a praiseworthy and blessed end.

5. I offer to You also all the pious desires of the faithful, the necessities of relative, friends, brethren, sisters, and of all my beloved ones; and of all those, who for the love of You, were benefactors to me or to others; and of those who desired and asked of me prayers and Masses for themselves and their loved ones, whether they are living or dead.

So that they may all feel the help of Your grace, the benefit of Your consolation, Your protection from dangers, and deliverance from sufferings; and so that, being freed from all evils, they may joyfully render to You their solemn thanksgiving.

6. I also offer up to You, in a special way, my prayers, this sacrifice of protection for those who in some manner have offended, grieved, or abused me, or have brought me any damage or molestation

For all those whom I have at any time grieved, troubled, injured, or scandalized with word or deed, knowingly or unknowingly; so that You may forgive us our sins and our reciprocal offences.

0 Lord, remove from our hearts all suspicion, indignation, wrath and contention, and anything else which may offend charity, and diminish fraternal love.

Have mercy, 0 Lord, have mercy on those who ask Your mercy; give Your grace to those who lack it, and make us worthy to merit to enjoy Your grace and to attain to life everlasting. Amen


This chapter contains the most excellent form of prayer to be said in preparation for Holy Communion. Let us therefore, read this chapter before receiving Holy Communion. Let us also remember that it is a duty of justice and of charity to pray for our relatives, our friends and our enemies both living and dead.


I adore You, my Sweet Jesus, with respect as my God, with confidence as my Savior, with love as my Father, with humility and fear as my Judge. I offer the Holy Mass which I assist at and the Holy Communion, which I receive to obtain pardon for my sins, the conversion of sinners and the sanctification of all the just.

From: The Imitation of Christ
by Thomas A. Kempis
In Four Books
Page 396

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