Home » Blog » Catholic Church » Morning & Night Prayers During Advent

Morning & Night Prayers During Advent

(You can download this article as a pdf HERE)

During Advent, the Christian, on awaking in the morning, will unite himself with the Church, who, in her Office of Matins, says to us these solemn words, which choirs of religious, men and women, throughout the universe, have been chanting during the deep silence of the night:

Come, let us adore the King our Lord, who is to come!

He will profoundly adore this great King, whose coming is so near at hand: and with this idea deeply impressed upon his mind, he will perform the first acts of religion, both ‘interior and exterior, wherewith he begins the day. The time for morning prayer being come, he may use the following method, which is formed upon the very prayers of the Church:

Morning Prayers
First, praise and adoration of the most holy Trinity:
V. Let us bless the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
R. Let us praise him and extol him above all for ever.
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
R. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Then, praise to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ:
V. We adore thee, Oh Christ, and we bless thee.
R. Because by thy cross thou hast redeemed the world.

Thirdly, invocation of the Holy Ghost:-
Come, Oh Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of thy faithful, and enkindle within them the fire of thy love.

After these fundamental acts of religion, you will recite the Lord’s Prayer, asking of God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to grant that His holy name may be glorified on earth by sending His Son, who will found the kingdom of God; and that He will vouchsafe to give us this Saviour who is our Bread and who will obtain for us, by the mediation so long looked for, the forgiveness of our sins; finally, that He will deliver us from sin, which is the sovereign evil.

The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name:
Thy kingdom come: thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us:
And lead us not into temptation: but deliver us from evil. Amen

Then address the angelical salutation to Mary, who is, in these days which precede the Nativity, so truly full of grace, since she has in her chaste womb Him who is the author of all grace. The Lord, the fruit of her womb, is with her; and we may already give her the sublime and unshared title of Mother of God.

The Angelical Salutation
Hail Mary, lull of grace; the Lord is with thee,’ blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

After this, recite the symbol of faith; and as you pronounce the words, who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, dwell on them with special attention, adoring the Saviour, who is as yet concealed in Mary’s womb.

The Apostles’ Creed.
I believe in God the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth.
And in Jesus Christ, his only Son our Lord,
Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary;
Suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried;
He descended into hell, the third day he rose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
From thence he shall come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Ghost: the holy Catholic Church; the communion of saints, the forgiveness
of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.

After having thus made the profession of your faith, excite within yourself sentiments of penance, by the remembrance of the sins you have committed; of gratitude to the Lamb of God, who is coming in order to save us; and of fear of the last day. For this end, say with the Church the following hymn taken from the Office of Lauds for Advent.

The solemn voice of the Precursor is heard, explaining the obscurity of the ancient figures; let
our slumbers cease; Jesus is rising on our horizon.
Let the sluggish soul now rise, and stay no more upon this earth; a new star is shining which
will take all sin away.
Lo! The Lamb is sent to forgive us freely our debt; let us unite in tears and prayers, that we
may obtain pardon.
That when he comes the second time, filling the world with fear, he may not have to punish us
for our sins, but may protect us in mercy.
Power, honour, praise, and glory, be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the holy Paraclete,
for ever and ever. Amen.

Here make a humble confession of your sins, reciting the general formula made use of by the

The Confession Of Sins
I confess to almighty God, to blessed Mary ever Virgin, to blessed Michael the Archangel, to blessed John the Baptist, to the holy apostles Peter and Paul, and to all the saints, that I have sinned exceedingly in thought, word, and deed: through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault.
Therefore I beseech blessed Mary ever Virgin, blessed Michael the Archangel, blessed John the Baptist, the holy apostles Peter and Paul, and all the saints, to pray to the Lord our God for me.
May almighty God have mercy on us, and, our sins being forgiven, bring us to life everlasting. Amen.
May the almighty and merciful Lord grant us pardon, absolution, and remission of our sins. Amen.

This is the proper place for making your meditation, as no doubt you practice this holy exercise. During Advent, its principal object ought to be the removing from ourselves those hindrances, which would oppose Jesus’ coming and reigning within us. The love of sensual pleasures, avarice, and pride, that triple concupiscence which St. John so strongly condemns in his first Epistle, must be withstood, else our preparation for Christmas is useless. And as the chief thing in every prayer or meditation is to turn our thoughts to Jesus Christ, we must, during Advent, contemplate Him in the womb of Mary, where He remains hidden, giving us, by this His state of abasement, a most telling lesson of devotedness to His Father’s glory, of obedience to the divine decrees, and of humility; but, at the same time, He gives us a most powerful proof of the greatness of His love of us.

This thought will naturally suggest to us a variety of motives and resolutions for breaking those ties which keep us from a virtuous life. But should they not produce sufficient impression on us, we must then consider Jesus as our Judge, in the dread magnificence of His majesty, and all the severity of His inevitable vengeance.

The next part of your morning prayer must be to ask of God, by the following prayers, for the grace to avoid every kind of sin during the day you are just beginning. Say, then, with the Church, whose prayers must always be preferred to all others:

V. Oh Lord, hear my prayer.
R. And let my cry come unto thee.
Let Us Pray
Almighty Lord and God, who hast brought us to the beginning of this day, let thy powerful grace so conduct us through it, that we may not fall into any sin, but that all our thoughts, words, and actions may be regulated according to the rules of thy heavenly justice, and tend to the observance of thy holy bw. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Then beg the divine assistance for the actions of the day, that you may do them well; and say thrice:
V. Incline unto my aid, Oh God.
R. Oh Lord, make haste to help me.
V. Incline unto my aid, Oh God.
R. Oh Lord, make haste to help me.
V. Incline unto my aid, Oh God.
R. Oh Lord, make haste to help me.
Let Us Pray
Lord God, and King of heaven and earth, vouchsafe this day to rule and sanctify, to direct and govern our souls and bodies, our senses, words, and actions in conformity to thy law, and strict obedience to thy commands; that by the help of thy grace, Oh Saviour of the world, we may be fenced and freed from all evils. Who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

After this, uniting yourself with the Church, which, both in the Divine Office, and during the holy Sacrifice, prays for the coming of Jesus Christ, say:

V. Oh Lord God of hosts, come and deliver us.
R. Show thy face, and we shall be saved.
V. Show us, Oh Lord, thy mercy.
R. And grant us the Saviour, whom we expect from thee.
V. The Lord shall rise upon thee, Oh Jerusalem.
R. And his glory shall be seen upon thee.

(Prayer to be said during the First Week of Advent)
Exert, we beseech thee, Oh Lord, thy power and come; that by Thy protection we may be freed from the imminent dangers of our sins, and be saved by thy mercy; who lives and reigns God, world without end. Amen.
(Prayer to be said during the Second Week of Advent)
Stir up, Oh Lord, our hearts to prepare the ways of thy only begotten Son: that by his coming we may be enabled to serve Thee with pure minds; who lives and reigns God, world without end. Amen.
(Prayer to be said during the Third Week of Advent)
Bend thine ear, Oh Lord, we beseech thee, to our prayers, and enlighten the darkness of our minds by the grace of thy visitation; who lives and reigns God, world without end. Amen.
(Prayer to be said during the Fourth Week of Advent)
Exert, we beseech thee, Oh Lord, thy power and come; and succour us by thy great might; that by the assistance of thy grace, thy indulgent mercy may hasten what is delayed by our sins; who lives and reigns God, world without end. Amen.

It would be well to add the special prayer which the Church says, during Advent in honour of the blessed Mother of God.

Let Us Pray
Oh God, who was pleased that thy Word, when the angel delivered his message, should take flesh in the womb of the blessed Virgin Mary; give ear to our humble petitions, and grant that we, who believe her to be truly the Mother of God, may be helped by her prayers. Through the same Christ our Lord. R. Amen.

During the day, you may use the instructions and prayers which you will find in this volume for each day of Advent, both for the proper of the time, and the proper of the saints. In the evening, you may use the following prayers.

Night Prayers
After having made the sign of the cross, adore the divine Majesty, who has so mercifully preserved you during this day, and so plentifully bestowed upon you, every hour, His grace and protection. Begin by reciting the hymn which the Church sings at Vespers during Advent.

Oh Jesus, thou kind Creator of the heavens, eternal light of believers, and Redeemer of all mankind, hear the prayers of thy suppliants.
Lest the world should perish by the fraud of the devil, thou, impelled by the vehemence of thy love for us,
did thyself become the remedy of all our weakness.
To expiate the sin of the whole world, Thou did come from the sanctuary of the Virgin’s womb, a victim destined to the cross.
How glorious is thy power, when, at the very sound of Thy name, heaven and hell bend the trembling knee!
We beseech thee, dread Judge of the last day, defend us from our enemies by the armour of thy heavenly grace.
Power, honour, praise, and glory, be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the holy Paraclete, for ever and ever. Amen.

After this hymn, say the Our Father, the Hail Mary, and the Apostles’ Creed, as in the morning.
Then make the examination of conscience, going over in your mind all the faults you may have
committed during the day; think how unworthy sin makes us of the merciful visit of our
Saviour, and make a firm resolution to avoid sin for the future, to do penance for it, and to
avoid the occasions which might lead you into it.

The examination of conscience concluded, recite the confiteor (or ‘I confess’) with heartfelt
contrition, and then give expression to your sorrow by the following act, which we have taken
from the Venerable Cardinal Bellarmine’s Catechism:

Act Of Contrition
Oh my God, I am exceedingly grieved for having offended thee, and with my whole heart I
repent of the sins I have committed: I hate and abhor them above every other evil, not only
because, by so sinning, I have lost heaven and deserved hell, but still more because I have
offended thee, Oh infinite Goodness, who art worthy to be loved above all things. I most firmly
resolve, by the assistance of thy grace, never more to offend thee for the time to come, and to
avoid those occasions which might lead me into sin.

You may then add the acts of faith, hope, and charity, to the recitation of which Pope Benedict
XIV has granted an indulgence of seven years and seven quarantines for each time.

Act Of Faith
Oh my God, I firmly believe whatsoever the holy, Catholic, apostolic, Roman Church requires
me to believe: I believe it because thou hast revealed it to her, thou who art the very truth.

Act Of Hope
Oh my God, knowing thy almighty power, and thy infinite goodness and mercy, I hope in thee that, by the merits of the Passion and death of our Saviour Jesus Christ, thou will grant me eternal life, which thou hast promised to all such as shall do the works of a good Christian; and these I resolve to do with the help of thy grace.

Act Of Charity
Oh my God, I love thee with my whole heart and above all things, because thou art the sovereign Good: I would rather lose all things than offend thee. For thy love also, I love, and desire to love, my neighbour as myself.

Then say to our blessed Lady, in honour of the ineffable dignity of her maternity, the following anthem.

Anthem of the Blessed Virgin
Sweet Mother of our Redeemer, gate whereby we enter heaven, and star of the sea! Help us, we fall; yet do we long to rise. Nature looked upon thee with admiration, when thou did give birth to thy divine Creator, thyself remaining, before and after it, a pure Virgin. Gabriel spoke his Hail to thee; we sinners crave thy pity.
V. The angel of the Lord declared unto Mary.
R. And she conceived of the Holy Ghost.
Let Us Pray
Pour forth, we beseech thee, Oh Lord, Thy grace into our hearts; that we to whom the Incarnation of Christ Thy Son was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

You would do well to add the litany of our Lady. An indulgence of three hundred days, for each time it is recited, has been granted by the Church.

The Litany Of The Blessed Virgin
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Holy Mother of God, pray for us.
Holy Virgin of virgins, pray for us.
Mother of Christ, pray for us.
Mother of divine grace, pray for us.
Mother most pure, pray for us.
Mother most chaste, pray for us.
Mother inviolate, pray for us.
Mother undefiled, pray for us.
Mother most amiable, pray for us.
Mother most admirable, pray for us.
Mother of good counsel, pray for us.
Mother of our Creator, pray for us.
Mother of our Redeemer, pray for us.
Virgin most prudent, pray for us.
Virgin most venerable, pray for us.
Virgin most renowned, pray for us.
Virgin most powerful, pray for us.
Virgin most merciful, pray for us.
Virgin most faithful, pray for us.
Mirror of justice, pray for us.
Seat of wisdom, pray for us.
Cause of our joy, pray for us.
Spiritual vessel, pray for us.
Vessel of honour, pray for us.
Singular vessel of dovotion, pray for us.
Mystical rose, pray for us.
Tower of David, pray for us.
Tower of ivory, pray for us.
House of gold, pray for us.
Ark of the covenant, pray for us.
Gate of heaven, pray for us.
Morning star, pray for us.
Health of the weak, pray for us.
Refuge of sinners, pray for us.
Comforter of the afflicted, pray for us.
Help of Christians, pray for us.
Queen of angels, pray for us.
Queen of patriarchs, pray for us.
Queen of prophets, pray for us.
Queen of apostles, pray for us.
Queen of martyrs, pray for us.
Queen of confessors, pray for us.
Queen of virgins, pray for us.
Queen of all saints, pray for us.
Queen conceived without original sin, pray for us.
Queen of the most holy rosary, pray for us.
Queen of peace, pray for us.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, spare us, Oh Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, Oh Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
V. Pray for us, Oh holy Mother of God.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Let Us Pray
Grant Oh Lord, we beseech thee, that we thy servants may enjoy constant health of body and mind, and by the glorious intercession of blessed Mary, ever a Virgin, be delivered from all present affliction, and come to that joy which is eternal. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Here invoke the holy angels, whose protection is, indeed, always so much needed by us, but never so much as during the hours of night. Say with the Church:

Holy angels, our loving guardians, defend us in the hour of battle, that we may not be lost at the dreadful judgement.
V. God has given his angels charge of thee.
R. That they may guard thee in all thy ways.
Let Us Pray
Oh God, who in thy wonderful providence hast been pleased to appoint thy holy angels for our guardians: mercifully hear our prayer, and grant we may rest secure under their protection, and enjoy their fellowship in heaven for ever. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Then beg the assistance of the saints by the following antiphon and prayer of the Church:

Behold, the Lord will come, and with him all his saints; and on that day there shall be a great light, alleluia.
V. Behold, the Lord shall appear upon a white cloud.
R. And with him thousands of saints.
Let Us Pray
Visit, we beseech thee, Oh Lord, and purify our hearts by thy grace: that when our Lord Jesus Christ thy Son shall come, together with all his saints, he may find us ready to give him a place within us: who lives and reigns with thee for ever and ever. Amen.

And here you may add a special mention of the saints to whom you bear a particular devotion, either as your patrons or otherwise; as also of those whose feast is kept in the Church that day, or who have been at least commemorated in the Divine Office. This done, remember the necessities of the Church suffering, and beg of God that He will give to the souls in purgatory a place of refreshment, light, and peace. For this intention recite the usual prayers.

Psalm 129
From the depths I have cried to thee, Oh Lord; Lord, hear my voice.
Let thine cars be attentive to the voice of my supplication.
If thou wilt observe iniquities, Oh Lord: Lord, who shall endure it?
For with thee there is merciful forgiveness; and by reason of thy law I have waited for thee, Oh Lord.
My soul has relied on His word; my soul has hoped in the Lord.
From the morning watch even until night, let Israel hope in the Lord.
Because with the Lord there is mercy, and with him plentiful redemption.
And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.
Eternal rest grant unto them, Oh Lord.
And let perpetual light shine upon them.
V. From the gate of hell.
R. Deliver their souls, Oh Lord.
V. May they rest in peace. R. Amen.
V. Oh Lord, hear my prayer.
R. And let my cry come unto thee.

Let Us Pray
Oh God the Creator and Redeemer of all the faithful, give to the souls of thy servants departed the remission of their sins: that through the help of pious supplications, they may obtain the pardon they have always desired. Who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

Here make a special memento of such of the faithful departed as have a particular claim upon your charity; after which, ask of God to give you His assistance, whereby you may pass the night free from danger. Say, then, still keeping to the words of the Church:

Save us, Oh Lord, while awake, and watch us as we sleep: that we may watch with Christ, and
rest in peace.
V. Vouchsafe, Oh Lord, this night.
R. To keep us without sin.
V. Have mercy on us, Oh Lord.
R. Have mercy on us.
V. Let thy mercy, Oh Lord, be upon us.
R. As we have’ hoped in Thee.
V. Oh Lord, hear my prayer.
R. And let my cry come unto Thee.
Let Us Pray
Visit, we beseech thee, Oh Lord, this house and family, and drive from it all snares of the enemy: let thy holy angels dwell herein, who may keep us in peace, and may thy blessing be always upon us. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, thy Son, who lives and reigns with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God; world without end. Amen.

And that you may end the day in the same sentiments with which you began it, repeat your prayer for the coming of the Saviour:
V. Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the Just One.
R. Let the earth be opened, and bud forth the Saviour.

To which add one of the four prayers for Advent, taking the one which belongs to the week and then retire to rest in the expectation of Him who is to come in the midnight.

Follow Dom Prosper Gueranger:
Latest posts from