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sancto quod est in Jerusa- thy holy temple which is in lem.
Jerusalem. V. Gloria Patri.
R. Glory be to the Father,
&c. Then the Antiphon Confirma hoc Deus is repeated; after which the Bishop, laying aside his mitre, rises up, and standing towards the Altar, with his hands joined before his breast, says:
V. Ostende nobis, Domine, V. Shew us thy mercy, o misericordiam tuam.
Lord. R. Et salutare tuum da R. And grant us thy salvanobis.
tion. V. Domine, exaudi ora- V. O Lord, hear my prayer. tionem meam.
R. Et clamor meus ad te R. And let my cry come veniat.
unto thee. V. Dominus vobiscum. V. The Lord be with you.
R. Et cum spiritu tuo. R. And with thy spirit. Then, with his hands still joined before his breast, and all the
persons confirmed devoutly kneeling, he says :
Let us pray. Deus, qui Apostolis tuis God, who didst give to thine Sanctum dedisti Spiritum, et Apostles the Holy Spirit, and per eos, eorumque successores, didst ordain that by them and cæteris fidelibus tradendum their suceessors he should be esse voluisti; respice propi- delivered to the rest of the faithtius ad humilitatis nostræ fa- ful, look mercifully on the sermulatum; et præsta, ut eo- vice of our humility; and grant rum corda, quorum frontes that the hearts of those whose sacro chrismate delinivimus, foreheads we have anointed et signo sanctæ Crucis signa- with the sacred chrism, and vimus, idem Spiritus Sanctus signed with the sign of the in eis superveniens, templum holy Cross, may, by the same gloriæ suæ dignanter inhabi- Holy Spirit descending upon tando perficiat. Qui, cum Pa- them, and vouchsafing to dwell tre et eodem Spiritu Sancto. therein, be made the temple vivis et regnas Deus, in sæ- of his glory. Who, with the cula sæculorum.
Father and the same Holy
world without end. R. Amen.
Then he says: Ecce sic benedicetur omnis Behold, thus shall every homo, qui timet Dominum. man be blessed that feareth And turning to the persons confirmed, he makes over them the
sign of the Cross, saying: Bene + dicat vos Dominus May the Lord bless + you ex Sion, ut videatis bona Je- out of Sion, that you may see rusalem omnibus diebus vitæ the good things of Jerusalem vestræ, et habeatis vitam æ- all the days of your life, and ternam.
have life everlasting. R. Amen.
On returning to your place, after having been confirmed, consecrate some moments to thank God for the graces he has so mercifully bestowed upon you in the Sacrament of Confirmation. Imagine you are among the Apostles after the descent of the Holy Ghost, and join most devoutly in the transports with which they glorified God. Renew your good resolutions; place yourself under the protection of the most holy Virgin, praying the august Spouse of the Holy Ghost to obtain for you grace to remain faithful to the divine inspirations, and to perform all that you have promised, for the glory of God and your own salvation.
O my good and merciful Creator, O my most loving Father, and hast thou indeed so far overlooked my misery and my unworthiness as to make my soul the tabernacle of thy Holy Spirit ! Am I indeed now honoured with the presence, and enriched with the gifts and graces of the Holy Ghost ! Yea, Lord, I confidently hope that thou hast not been deaf to my petitions, and that I am now in possession of that sacred gift which I so ardently desired. O my God, accept the praises of thy angels and saints, in thanksgiving for thy unbounded mercies towards me. May the blessed Mother of thy divine Son, and the glorious choir of Apostles, thank thee for me. May the cross of Jesus Christ, with which may forehead hath been signed, defend me from all my enemies, and save me at the last day. May the inward unction of sanctifying grace, figured by the chrism with which I have been anointed, penetrate my soul, soften my heart, strengthen my will, and consecrate my whole being to thy service.
Here may also be used the Prayer for the Twelve Fruits of the Holy Ghost, p. 416, and the Te Deum, p. 538.
Acts after Confirmation. An Act of Thanksgiving.–O Holy Spirit, although I am unable to understand all the greatness of the benefit which thou hast now bestowed upon me, in communicating thyself unto me with the abundance of thy graces ; I return thee my most humble thanks for thy unspeakable gift, and I beseech thee to accept the grateful homage of my heart, which I here offer to thy divine Majesty. Oh, let this marvellous grace, which has imprinted on my soul the character of a perfect Christian, remain for ever engraven there, and excite within me a never-failing gratitude.
An Act of Consecration.–O Divine Spirit, who, of thy pure bounty and infinite goodness, hast given thyself to me, notwithstanding my great unworthiness, how could I be so ungrateful as not to give myself wholly to thee? Receive, then, I beseech thee, the offering which I make to thee of all I am. I consecrate to thee my mind with all its thoughts ; my soul with all its faculties; my heart with all its affections: henceforth thou shalt be the God of my heart, and my portion for ever. Perfect, O Divine Spirit, what thou hast be. gun in me; strengthen the good desires with which thou hast inspired me, and make me ever wholly on fire with the love of thee.
An Act of Petition.-O Holy and Sanctifying Spirit, thy love towards me hath lavished upon me all thy gifts, and it is thy powerful protection alone that can preserve them to me. I possess this most precious treasure in a frail and earthen vessel : strengthen my weakness, I beseech thee, and grant that henceforth I may shew myself worthy of the glorious title of a disciple of Jesus Christ. Rather let me die than drive thee from my heart.
A Prayer to be said before leaving the Church. O Lord, I am about to leave this holy place, in which thy Holy Spirit hath vouchsafed to visit my soul. I am going to return to the world, whose whole spirit is opposed to the mind of Jesus Christ. Withdraw not thyself from me, o most Holy Spirit ; give me not up to its malice and wickedness. Let thy love embrace me on every side. Suffer not that this forehead, on which the holy unction is still glistening, should ever be ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, nor
the members of my body, which is now become thy temple, should ever be dishonoured and defiled by sin. Oh, may my heart never resist thee, O most blessed Spirit, but ever yield to the impressions of thy grace ; for thou art the Spirit of wisdom and the Spirit of strength, and thou only canst accomplish in me those good desires with which thou inspirest me. Amen.
In this spirit every Christian ought to live after he is confirmed; for to this he is most certainly bound, by the perfection of the sacrament. Although weakness, cowardice, and human respect may be somewhat excused in such as, through no fault of theirs, have not yet been confirmed, there can be no excuse for those who have received this sacrament. For the principal design and effect of this holy ordinance is, to strengthen Christians against the snares and power of the devil, the world, and the flesh; to take from them the fear of men; to enable them to confess openly, and follow perseveringly, the sacred rules of the Gospel, esteem only Jesus to be their Master, and enter into no other warfare but his. To this end they are invested with the whole armour of Christ, that they may stand firm before persecutors and tyrants, who would do violence to their faith; and particularly before the people of the world, who offend against those sacred rules by their actions, by their words, by their excesses, by their vanities, or who otherwise join with the enemies of the Cross, in overthrowing that law which the servants of Christ are bound to assert and maintain.
A Prayer for the Renewal of the Grace of Confirmation.
(It may be used also on the Anniversary of the Day.) O my Lord and my God, I have received, through thy mercy, the holy sacrament of Confirmation; preserve, I beseech thee, in my soul, and renew therein continually, the powerful effects of this divine ordinance, that I may be enabled henceforth to perform all its obligations, and to live according to the spirit of a true and perfect Christian. I have been enlisted into thy heavenly army, and have received the character of a soldier of Jesus Christ : grant that, always and in all places, I may prove myself the faithful servant of him, in whom dwelleth all the fulness of the Spirit, and, shedding forth the odour of a holy life, may edify my neighbour by my good example. Grant, I most humbly beseech thee, that neither the world, nor the customs of the world, may infect my soul with their pernicious maxims, and that
its vain flatteries and allurements may never make any im. pression on my soul. Assist me by thy grace, that I may firmly reject the dangerous solicitations of the worldly, and hearken not to the poisonous discourses of the unbelieving; and may I endeavour, by my counsel and example, to prevent my brethren in the faith from being ensnared by their deceitful words, or falling a prey to their malicious wickedness, ever seeking to draw others to the same abyss of error and destruction. Grant me, O my God, such purity of intention, such true humility and strength of faith, that my whole heart and mind being raised above all earthly things, and the illusions of a false philosophy, I may seek but thee, put my trust only in thy divine word, and firmly adhere to the decisions of thy Church, which alone can surely guide the learned and the ignorant into the way of truth and everlasting life. Amen.