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Pray The Actual Prayer For Epidemics

Mar 19, 2020 by

There is a prayer for everything. The resources that Our Lord gives us through the Church are abundant.

Back in 1614, Pope Paul V promulgated the Rituale Romanum, or Roman Ritual. In its list of Rites for Processions, it contains a "prayer in times of epidemic."


This prayer is meant to be prayed in Latin (demons despise the Latin language, as exorcisms have revealed) but you will see the English translation, as well. If you can pray it in Latin, great! If you can't, pray it in English!

Note: if you are wondering how on earth to say the Latin words, Father Z. kindly reads it aloud on his podcast so that you can hear how the words are pronounced. Why not pray it aloud with Father Z.? (He recites it about 6:13 minutes into the podcast.)

Under Our Lady's Mantle

Prayer in Times of Epidemic

Latin (Scroll down for English)

V. Dómine, non secúdum peccáta nostre facias nobis.

R. Neque secúndum iniquittátes nostras retribuas nobis.

V. Adjuva nos, Deus, salutáris noster.

R. Et propter glóriam nóminis tui, Dómine, libera nos.

V. Dómine, ne memineris iniquitatum nostrarum antiquárum.

R. Cito anticipent nos misericórdiæ tuæ, quia páuperes facti sumus nimis.

V. Ora pro nobis, sancte Sebastiáne.

R. Ut digni efficiátmur promissiónibus Christi.

V. Dómine, exaudi oratiónem meam.

R. Et clamor meus ad te véniat.

V. Dominus vobiscum.

R. Et cum spiritu tuo.


Exáudi nos, Deus salutáris noster: et intercedénte beáta et gloriósa Dei genitrice Maria semper vergine, et beáto Sebastiáno mártyre tuo, et omnibus Sanctis, pópulum tuum ab iracundiæ tuæ terróribus libera, et misericórdiæ tuæ fac largitáte securum.

Propitiáre, Dómine, supplicatiónibus nostris: et animárum et córporum medére languóribus: ut remissióne percépta, in tua semper benedictióne lætémur.

Da nobis, quæsumus, Dómine, piæ petitiónis efféctum: et pestiléntiam mortalitatérmque propitiátus avérte; ut mortálium corda cognóscant, et te indignánte tália flagélla prodire, et te miserante cessáre. Per Dóminum. Amen. Ultimo benedicit cum Refiquia S. Crucis, dicens: Benedictio Dei omnipoténtis, Patris, et Filii, ? et Spiritus Sancti, descéndat super vos, máneat semper.

R. Amen.

Christ, Our Consolation


V. Deal not with us, Lord, according to our sins.

R. And take not vengeance on us because of our misdeeds.

V. Help us, O God, our Deliverer.

R. And for Thy name’s sake, O Lord, free us.

V. Remember not, O Lord, our sins of old.

R. Hasten to us with Thy compassion, for we are become exceeding poor.

V. St. Sebastian, pray for us.

R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

V. O Lord, hear my prayer.

R. And let my cry come unto thee.

V. The Lord be with you.

R. And with Thy spirit.

Let us pray:

Vouchsafe to hear us, O God, our only salvation! And through the intercession of the glorious and blessed Mary, Mother of God and ever Virgin, of Thy blessed martyr, Sebastian and of all the saints, deliver Thy people from the terrors of Thy wrath, and restore their confidence by the outpouring of Thy compassion.

Be moved to pity, O Lord, at our earnest entreaties, and heal the illnesses of body and soul; so that experiencing Thy forgiveness we may ever rejoice in Thy blessing.

We beseech thee, O Lord, grant us a hearing as we devoutly raise our petitions to Thee, and graciously turn away the epidemic of plague which afflicts us; so that mortal hearts may recognize that these scourges proceed from Thine indignation and cease only when Thou art moved to mercy. Through our Lord.

R. Amen.

Saint Louis Caring for the Plague Victims by William-Adolphe Bouguereau
Saint Louis Caring for the Plague Victims by William-Adolphe Bouguereau

Why St. Sebastian?

Why, of all the saints, is Sebastian mentioned in this prayer?

The answer is that he became recognized as the patron of plague-stricken victims during the Great Plague of the 14th century. Here is part of the reasoning, as quoted from Wikipedia:

The hopeful example of Sebastian being able to recover from his "first martyrdom" (or "sagittation", as it is sometimes called) was also relevant, and the arrow-wounds can resemble the buboes that were symptoms of bubonic plague. Visually, "the arrow wounds call to God for mercy to us, as the symptoms of the unfirm call for pity from the passerby", as Molanus put it.

The chronicler Paul the Deacon relates that, in 680, Rome was freed from a raging pestilence by him. The Golden Legend transmits the episode of a great plague...which was stopped by the erection of an altar in honor of Sebastian in the Church of Saint Peter in the Province of Pavia.


We Are Under Our Lady's Mantle

Even when crisis take place, we are in the mercy of God. We can find hope and strength by taking refuge under Our Lady's mantle. She is our Mother. God is our loving Father.

Let's keep praying together, repent of our sins and those of the whole world, and keep our hearts anchored in Christ.

Keep your chin up! Don't be cast down. Peace of heart is what we need. God is in control. Let's encourage one another in this.

What prayers are you offering up as we plead for the end of CO-VID 19?

How has your Lent been transformed by this unexpected global cross?

There is a prayer for times of epidemic. Let's pray it.