jump to navigation

Catholic Tradition in Prayer: Saint Patrick’s Breastplate August 3, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, history, Interior Life, Saints, sanctity, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.

According to tradition, St. Patrick wrote this hymn in AD 433 for divine protection before successfully converting the Irish king Leoghaire and his subjects from paganism to Christianity.  The breastplate of course references Ephesians vi:12-18, wherein St. Paul describes the various armaments we must take on (those of prayer and virtue) in order to do battle with the principalities and powers of this world.  So the name is quite apropos for the combat the great Saint of Ireland engaged in in converting a violent pagan country to the sweet yoke of Jesus Christ.

Some dispute whether the prayer really is that ancient, but at any rate it is beautiful, and since I had never come across it before reading The Gentle Traditionalist, I figured you may not be familiar with it, either.  Or maybe it’s widely known, I really don’t know.  At any rate, here it is:

I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through belief in the Threeness,
Through confession of the Oneness
of the Creator of creation.

I arise today
Through the strength of Christ’s birth with His baptism,
Through the strength of His crucifixion with His burial,
Through the strength of His resurrection with His ascension,
Through the strength of His descent for the judgment of doom.

I arise today
Through the strength of the love of cherubim,
In the obedience of angels,
In the service of archangels,
In the hope of resurrection to meet with reward,
In the prayers of patriarchs,
In the predictions of prophets,
In the preaching of apostles,
In the faith of confessors,
In the innocence of holy virgins,
In the deeds of righteous men.

I arise today, through
The strength of heaven,
The light of the sun,
The radiance of the moon,
The splendor of fire,
The speed of lightning,
The swiftness of wind,
The depth of the sea,
The stability of the earth,
The firmness of rock.

I arise today, through
God’s strength to pilot me,
God’s might to uphold me,
God’s wisdom to guide me,
God’s eye to look before me,
God’s ear to hear me,
God’s word to speak for me,
God’s hand to guard me,
God’s shield to protect me,
God’s host to save me
From snares of devils,
From temptation of vices,
From everyone who shall wish me ill,
afar and near.

I summon today
All these powers between me and those evils,
Against every cruel and merciless power
that may oppose my body and soul,
Against incantations of false prophets,
Against black laws of pagandom,
Against false laws of heretics,
Against craft of idolatry,
Against spells of witches and smiths and wizards,
Against every knowledge that corrupts man’s body and soul;
Christ to shield me today
Against poison, against burning,
Against drowning, against wounding,
So that there may come to me an abundance of reward.

Christ with me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,
Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise,
Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.

I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through belief in the Threeness,
Through confession of the Oneness
of the Creator of creation.

———-End Quote————

It’s rather pretty and, I would say, quite lyrically Irish, is it not? I like it quite a bit. I hope to add this regularly to my prayer rotation.  God willing.

Perhaps this prayer might be invoked with the great evangelist Saint Patrick that the Church might be gifted with men of similar faith, devotion, and willingness to speak the truth in our own age.  The Church desperately needs some new Saints to reinvigorate the remaining faithful and begin converting the fallen away masses.

PS there are shorter versions of this prayer.  They basically are limited to the last half of the above.


1. reader - August 3, 2017

pretty well-known

2. LaGallina - August 4, 2017

I say this prayer every morning. It is part of my routine to gear up for battle each day. It is one of those special prayers that found me when my family was dealing with some major spiritual attacks.

Tantumblogo - August 4, 2017

I have apparently led a sheltered life.

3. skeinster - August 4, 2017

We sang this as a hymn when I was an Episcopalian. Quite rousing in a group.

That you had never heard of it is a useful reminder to me to be humbly grateful to those new acquaintances who tell me the story of St. Monica and Augustine for the nth time- you can never know who’s familiar with what.

4. MrT - August 5, 2017

Isn’t this the prayer advocated for praying “on the day of the Waning Crescent Moon” every month for POTUS? He’s been targeted on “that day” every month by some Wiccans for their invocations, I have read. I don’t quite know how to turn this prayer into one for someone else if you don’t have their permission, since it is a binding prayer. Also, I don’t think there is a single day during the lunar cycle designated a the day of the Waning Crescent Moon. All of the days between the Full Moon and the New Moon is a Waning Moon. I discovered by a brief web search that those pagan/witch people think the entire two weeks or so of the Waning Moon is the best time during the lunar month for their invocations. Praying for yourself, St. Patrick’s Breastplate is good as is any time. If prayed for someone else, I would think you ask God to do the binding, and pray it every day between the Full Moon and New Moon for a full treatment.

Sorry comments are closed for this entry

%d bloggers like this: