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acceptance with God; and blessing the bread and wine with the sign of the cross, he invokes the Author of all sanctity to sanctify the offering. You may join with him, and say:
IN a contrite heart and humble spirit may we be accepted by thee, O Lord; and let our sacrifice be made in thy sight this day, so that it may please thee, O Lord God.
Come, O almighty and eternal God, the Sanctifier, and bless this sacrifice prepared for thy holy name.
At HIGH MASS the Priest incenses the altar. Whilst he is doing so, you can say the following prayer:
A Prayer at the incensing of the Altar.
VOUCHSAFE, O Lord, to receive this incense which thy Priest blesses in thy name. May it ascend to thee as an odour of sweetness, and may thy mercy descend upon us. Let my prayer, O Lord, be directed as incense in thy sight, and the lifting up of my hands as an evening sacrifice. Set a watch, O Lord, before my mouth, and a guard round about my lips; that my heart incline not to evil words and to make excuses for sin.
Enkindle within us, O Lord, the fire of
thy love, and the flame of everlasting charity. Amen.
A Prayer at the Lavabo, or washing the Fingers.
O MY Jesus, would that I could take thee to witness the holiness of my life and the innocence of my heart! But with the prophet, I must cry out, it is in thy mercy only that I place my hope; my consolation is in meditating on thy promises to the penitent heart, and thy faithfulness. in performing them. Confounded at all that I have committed to this day, and encouraged by the favours that thou hast bestowed upon me, I can but promise to correspond better with thy graces than I have hitherto done. I will purify myself more and more with tears of repentance; I will bless thee as I do this day; and I will sing of the wonders of thy power and thy mercy.
A Prayer when the Priest stands bowing down at the middle of the Altar.
O MOST holy and adorable Trinity, vouchsafe to receive this our sacrifice in remembrance of our Saviour's passion,
resurrection, and glorious ascension; and grant that we may die with him to our sins, rise with him to a new life, and ascend with him to thee. Let those saints whose memory we celebrate on earth remember us before thy throne in heaven, and obtain mercy for us, through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Then the Priest, kissing the altar, turns to the people and says, Orate, fratres, &c., that is, Brethren, pray that my sacrifice and yours may be made acceptable to God the Father almighty. Join with him, and pray thus:
THE creature can offer nothing to the Creator that can be worthy of his acceptance; I unite myself, therefore, to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, which can alone merit anything in my behalf. I desire nothing but through him and with him. I have no wish beyond him. O God of mercy, I seek nothing but thy love. Graciously accept of the sacrifice of my heart and of my whole self, together with the sacrifice offered at the hands of thy minister, to the praise and glory of thy name, for our benefit, and that of all thy holy Church. Amen.
Then the Priest says, in a low voice, the prayers called the Secreta prayers.
A Prayer at the Secreta.
MERCIFULLY hear our prayers, O Lord, and graciously accept this oblation which we thy servants make to thee; and as we offer it to the honour of thy name, so may it be to us a means of obtaining thy grace here, and life everlasting hereafter. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
Sanctify, we beseech thee, O Lord our God, by the invocation of thy holy name, the Victim of this oblation; and by it make us ourselves an eternal offering to thee. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
Then the Priest recites the PREFACE (so called because it serves as an introduction to the CANON of the Mass), in which you may join with him as follows:
At the Preface.
LET us lift ourselves up to heaven, O my soul, and render thanks to the Lord our God.
How just is it, O holy Father, and right and profitable, that we should always and in all places give thanks to thee the
almighty and eternal God. Who with thy only-begotten Son and the Holy Ghost art one God, art one Lord, not in the singleness of one only person, but in the Trinity of one nature. For that which by thy revelation we believe of thy glory, the same we believe of thy Son, and of the Holy Ghost, without any difference or inequality, so that in the confession of the true and eternal Godhead, distinction of persons, oneness in essence, and equality in majesty may be adored. Which the Angels praise and the Archangels, the Cherubim, also, and the Seraphim, emulating each other in celebrating thy glory and singing thy praises. May I, great God, unite my heart and voice. with their celestial songs, and cry with them;
Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of Hosts; heaven and earth are full of thy glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.