Prayers for the sick and dying

Artwork: Unknown master, Italian. “The Sick at a Shrine”

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Prayers for the sick, dying, dead, and the grace of a happy death are almost too numerous to count. Below is a small collection of old prayers on prayers specifically for the sick and dying. More PDFs of prayers are provided at the bottom of the page.

Many of these prayers carry indulgences, under the usual conditions.

Blessed Be God

Callan, Fr. Charles, and Fr. John McHugh. Blessed Be God: A Complete Catholic Prayer Book. 1925. https://archive.org/details/blessed-be-god-a-complete-catholic-prayer-book/page/461/mode/1up.

Almighty and eternal God, the everlasting Salvation of them that believe, hear us on behalf of Thy sick servant, N., for whom we implore the aid of Thy pitying mercy, that with his bodily health restored, he may give thanks to Thee in Thy church. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen.

A Manual of Prayers

Catholic Church, and Plenary Council of Baltimore. A Manual of Prayers for the Use of the Catholic Laity: Prepared and Published by Order of the Third Plenary Council of Baltimore. New York: Catholic Publication Society, 1888. http://archive.org/details/AManualOfPrayers1888.

Almighty God, behold I receive this sickness, with which Thou art pleased to visit me, as coming from Thy Fatherly hand. It is Thy will that it should be thus with me. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. May this sickness be to the honor of Thy holy name and for the good of my soul. For these ends I here offer myself to Thee with entire submission; to suffer what Thou pleasest, as long as Thou pleasest, and in what manner Thou pleasest: for I am Thy creature and Thy child, who have most ungratefully offended Thee. I have truly deserved Thy chastisement, and far more than Thou layest on me, but, O Lord, rebuke me not in Thine indignation, neither chasten me in Thy sore displeasure. Look upon my weakness, and be merciful unto me, for Thou knowest whereof I am made, Thou rememberest that I am but dust; deal not with me therefore after my sins, nor reward me according to mine iniquities; but according to the multitude of Thy tender mercies have compassion upon me. Assist me, I pray Thee, with Thy heavenly grace, and give me strength, that I may be able to bear with Christian patience all the pains, uneasiness, and trials of my sickness. Preserve me from all temptations so far as Thou seest fit, and be Thou my defence against all the assaults of the enemy, that I may in no wise offend Thee ; and if it be Thy will that this sickness should be my last, I beg of Thee so to direct me by Thy grace that I may in no way neglect or be deprived of those Sacraments which Thou hast ordained for the good of my soul, to prepare it for its passage into eternity; so that, being cleansed from all my sins, I may put my whole trust in Thee, and love Thee above all things; and that finally, through the merits of the Passion and Death of Thy Son, I may be admitted into the company of the Blessed, there to praise Thee for ever, through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Key of Heaven

The Key of Heaven: Or, a Manual of Prayer. New York: P. J. Kenedy, 1870. http://archive.org/details/keyofheavenorman00unse.

Lord, I accept this sickness from thy hands, and resign myself entirely to thy blessed will, whether it be for life or death. Not my will, but thine be done: thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. I offer up to thee, Lord, all that I now suffer, or may hereafter suffer, to be united to the sufferings of my Redeemer, and sanctified by his passion. I adore thee, my God and my All, as my first beginning and last end ; and bowing down all the powers of my soul in thy presence, desire to pay thee the best homage I am able. I desire to praise thee, Lord, without ceasing, in sickness as well as in health: and to join my heart and voice with the whole Church in heaven and on earth, in blessing thee forever. I give thee thanks from the bottom of my heart for all the mercies and blessings bestowed upon me and thy whole Church, through Jesus Christ thy Son; and, above all, for his having loved me from all eternity, and redeemed me with his precious blood. let not that blood be shed for me in vain. O! Lord, I believe all those heavenly truths which thou hast revealed, and which thy holy Catholic Church believes and teaches : thou art the sovereign Truth, who neither canst deceive nor be deceived : and thou hast promised the Spirit of Truth to guide thy Church into all truth. I believe in God the Father Almighty, &c. In this faith I resolve, through thy grace, both to live and die: Lord, strengthen and increase my faith. My God, all my hopes are centred in thee, from whom I hope for mercy, grace, and salvation, through the passion and death of my blessed Redeemer. In thee, Lord, have I put my trust: let me never be confounded. sweet Jesus, receive me into thy arms in this day of my distress: hide me within thy wounds, bathe my soul in thy precious blood. I love thee, my God, with my whole heart and soul, above all things: at least, I desire so to love thee. O! come now, and take full possession of my soul, and teach me to love thee forever. I desire to be dissolved, and to be with Christ. When, Lord, will thv kingdom come? When wilt thou perfectly reign in all hearts? When shall sin be no more? I desire to embrace every neighbor in the arms of perfect charity, for the love of thee. I forgive, from my heart, all that have any ways offended or injured me, and ask pardon of all whom I have any ways offended. Have mercy on me, God, according to thy great mercy; and according to the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my iniquities. O! who will give water to my head, and fountains of tears to my eyes, that night and day I may bewail my sins! O that I had never offended so good a God! that I had never sinned! Happy those souls that have preserved their baptismal innocence. Lord, be merciful to me a sinner; sweet Jesus, Son of the living God, have mercy on me. I recommend my soul to God my Creator, who made me out of nothing to Jesus Christ my Saviour, who redeemed me with his precious blood; to the Holy Ghost, who sanctified me in baptism. Into thy hands, Lord, I commend my spirit. I renounce from this moment, and for all eternity, the devil and all his works; and abhor all his suggestions and temptations. Suffer not this mortal enemy of my soul, Lord, to have any dominion over me, either now, or at my last hour. let thy holy angels defend me from all the powers of darkness. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for me a poor sinner, now, and at the hour of my death. all ye blessed angels and saints of God, pray for me a poor sinner.

With God

Lasance, Francis Xavier. With God: A Book of Prayers and Reflections. New York: Benziger Bros, 1911. http://archive.org/details/withgodbookofpra00lasa.

Most merciful Jesus, Who art the consolation and salvation of all who put their trust in Thee, we humbly beseech Thee, by Thy most bitter Passion, grant the recovery of his (or her) health to Thy servant N.N., provided this be for his soul’s welfare, that with us he may praise and magnify Thy holy name.

O Mary, Mother of our Saviour,

Virgin, most powerful,

Virgin, most merciful.

Health of the sick,

Refuge of sinners.

Comforter of the afflicted.

Help of Christians; Pray for him (or her).

St. Joseph, pray for him (or her).

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father.

PDFs