Luther’s Sacristy Prayer

There are two sacristy prayers of Luther that circulate. Here is one:

Lord God, You have appointed me as a Bishop and Pastor in Your Church, but you see how unsuited I am to meet so great and difficult a task. If I had lacked Your help, I would have ruined everything long ago. Therefore, I call upon You: I wish to devote my mouth and my heart to you; I shall teach the people. I myself will learn and ponder diligently upon Your Word. Use me as Your instrument — but do not forsake me, for if ever I should be on my own, I would easily wreck it all.

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About michaelrinehart

Bishop of the Texas Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod, of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
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2 Responses to Luther’s Sacristy Prayer

  1. urdu says:

    Your translation is by James Kellerman, I believe; I am posting a different and more poetic translation, along with the other sacristy prayer that you mention but did not cite. Both are excellent prayers.
    1)
    Lord God, you have made me a pastor in your church. You see how unfit I am to undertake this great and difficult office, and if it were not for your help, I would have ruined it all long ago. Therefore I cry to you for aid. I offer my mouth and my heart to your service. I desire to teach the people. And for myself, I would learn evermore and diligently meditate on your Word. Use me as your instrument, but never forsake me, for if I am left alone, I shall easily bring it all to destruction. Amen.
    2)
    O Lord God, dear Father in heaven, I am indeed unworthy of the office and ministry in which I am to make known Your glory and to nurture and to serve this congregation.

    But since You have appointed me to be a pastor and teacher, and the people are in need of the teaching and the instruction, be my helper and let Your holy angels attend me.

    Then if You are pleased to accomplish anything through me, to Your glory and not to mine or to the praise of men, grant me, out of Your pure grace and mercy, a right understanding of Your Word and that I may also diligently perform it.

    O Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, shepherd and bishop of our souls, send Your Holy Spirit that He may work with me to will and to do through Your divine strength according to Your good plea- sure. Amen.

    – Pastoral Care Companion, pg. xviii, CPH © 2007

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