Saturday, March 19, 2005
St. Patrick's Breastplate
I know I'm a couple days late for St. Patrick's Day (one of my all-time favorite holidays!), but I've been meditating recently on the prayer of St. Patrick and I wanted to share it here:

I bind unto myself today
The strong Name of the Trinity,
By invocation of the same
The Three in One and One in Three.

I bind this today to me forever
By power of faith, Christ's incarnation;
His baptism in Jordan river,
His death on Cross for my salvation;
His bursting from the spicèd tomb,
His riding up the heavenly way,
His coming at the day of doom
I bind unto myself today.

I bind unto myself the power
Of the great love of cherubim;
The sweet 'Well done' in judgment hour,
The service of the seraphim,
Confessors' faith, Apostles' word,
The Patriarchs' prayers, the prophets' scrolls,
All good deeds done unto the Lord
And purity of virgin souls.

I bind unto myself today
The virtues of the star lit heaven,
The glorious sun's life giving ray,
The whiteness of the moon at even,
The flashing of the lightning free,
The whirling wind's tempestuous shocks,
The stable earth, the deep salt sea
Around the old eternal rocks.

I bind unto myself today
The power of God to hold and lead,
His eye to watch, His might to stay,
His ear to hearken to my need.
The wisdom of my God to teach,
His hand to guide, His shield to ward;
The word of God to give me speech,
His heavenly host to be my guard.

Against the demon snares of sin,
The vice that gives temptation force,
The natural lusts that war within,
The hostile men that mar my course;
Or few or many, far or nigh,
In every place and in all hours,
Against their fierce hostility
I bind to me these holy powers.

Against all Satan's spells and whiles,
Against false words of heresy,
Against the knowledge that defiles,
Against the heart's idolatry,
Against the wizard's evil craft,
Against the death wound and the burning,
The choking wave, the poisoned shaft,
Protect me, Christ, till Thy returning.

Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.

I bind unto myself the Name,
The strong Name of the Trinity,
By invocation of the same,
The Three in One and One in Three.
By Whom all nature hath creation,
Eternal Father, Spirit, Word:
Praise to the Lord of my salvation,
Salvation is of Christ the Lord.

posted by Mike Clawson at 3:52 AM | Permalink |


At 3/19/2005 09:30:00 AM, Anonymous Karen

Wow! Thanks for sharing - that is a beautiful prayer. A lot of really good stuff to meditate on!


At 3/19/2005 10:01:00 AM, Blogger Erin

Wow, I really like that a lot, Mike. Thanks for posting that. It's funny...a lot of themes that were brought up are things I've been thinking about a lot lately; that's really cool!


At 3/20/2005 08:20:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous

You mean there is more to St. Patrick than just green beer? :^)

What an absolutely beautiful and powerful prayer-poem! This was a great way to start my day...

Peace, Aaroneous


At 3/21/2005 09:52:00 PM, Blogger Mike Clawson

I'm glad y'all enjoyed it. It's long been a favorite of mine. It reminds me of something out of a fantasy novel, it has that kind of mystery and power and beauty to it.


At 3/22/2005 08:08:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous

Hello again,

Your comments sparked some memories. Several years ago a professional Christian dance company, "Hosanna Sacred Arts", performed a piece that was choreographed around this prayer. It was extremely powerful and profoundly beautiful. I still get chills thinking about it!

Peace, Aaroneous


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