Prayer to Acquire the Virtues

O God, all-powerful and all-knowing, without beginning and without end, 
You Who are the source, the sustainer, and the rewarder of all virtues, 
Grant that I may abide on the firm ground of faith,
          be sheltered by an impregnable shield of hope,
          and be adorned in the bridal garment of charity.

Grant that I may through justice by subject to You,
          through prudence avoid the beguilements of the devil,
          through temperance exercise restraint,
          and through fortitude endure adversity with patience.

Grant that whatever good things I have, I may share generously with those who have not
          and that whatever good things I do not have, I may request humbly from those who do.

Grant that I may judge rightly the evil of the wrongs I have done
          and bear calmly the punishments I have brought upon myself,
          and that I may never envy my neighbor’s possessions
          and ever give thanks for Your good things.

Grant that I may always observe modesty in the way I dress, the way I walk, and the gestures I use,
          restrain my tongue from frivolous talk,
          prevent my feet from leading me astray,
          keep my eyes from wandering glances,
          shelter my ears from rumors,
          lower my gaze in humility,
          lift my mind to thoughts of heaven,
          contemn all that will pass away,
          and love You only.

Grant that I may subdue my flesh and cleanse my conscience,
          honor the saints and praise You worthily,
          advance in goodness,
          and end a life of good works with a holy death.

Plant deep in me, Lord, all the virtues,
          that I might be devout in divine matters,
          discerning in human affairs,
          and burdensome to no one in fulfilling my own bodily needs.

Grant to me, Lord, fervent contrition, pure confession, and complete reparation.

Order me inwardly through a good life, that I might do what is right
          and what will be meritorious for me and a good example for others.

Grant that I may always restrain my foolish impulses,
          yet never succumb to lethagy,
Lest I begin things before I should or abandon them before finishing. Amen.

from Devoutly I Adore Thee: The Prayers and Hymns of St. Thomas Aquinas
(Sophia Institute Press, 1993)

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