Sunday, June 10, 2012

Anima Christi

The Institution of the Eucharist -Painting by Joos Van Wassenhove - 1475

The Anima Christi is my favorite prayer. I remember learning a sung version of it in 4th grade when my family lived in Lincoln, Nebraska. Our parish priest told us to always pray it after receiving Holy Communion, and it became a habit that lasted until today. This prayer has brought me much consolation, both during Mass and in my everyday life. It was played at our wedding and is imprinted in my mind forever.

No one really knows the origin of the Anima Christi, although it is commonly associated with St. Ignatius of Loyola, as he references it in the Spiritual Exercises. It is thought to have originated in medieval times, perhaps around 1300 A.D. Here it is, both in the original Latin and in translation: 

Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, inebriate me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O Good Jesus, hear me.
Within Thy wounds hide me.
Suffer me not to be separated from thee.
From the malignant enemy defend me.
In the hour of my death call me.
And bid me come unto Thee,
That with all Thy saints,
I may praise thee
Forever and ever.

Anima Christi, sanctifica me.
Corpus Christi, salva me.
Sanguis Christi, inebria me.
Aqua lateris Christi, lava me.
Passio Christi, conforta me.
O bone Iesu, exaudi me.
Intra tua vulnera absconde me.
Ne permittas me separari a te.
Ab hoste maligno defende me.
In hora mortis meae voca me.
Et iube me venire ad te,
Ut cum Sanctis tuis laudem te
in saecula saeculorum.



  1. I love this prayer too!
    I have started to bring a holy card with this prayer on it to mass so I can learn it for after communion.
    What song was it that you learned? I have only heard a childrens song of it.

  2. Isn't it a beautiful prayer? The song I learned in 4th grade was composed by one of the nuns I had as a teacher, and I haven't ever been able to find actual sheet music. The song we had at our wedding was "Soul of My Savior," which might be the children's song you are referring to:

  3. I like the Bl John Henry Newman translation as well:

    Soul of Christ, be my sanctification;
    Body of Christ, be my salvation;
    Blood of Christ, fill all my veins;
    Water of Christ's side, wash out my stains;
    Passion of Christ, my comfort be;
    O good Jesu, listen to me;
    In Thy wounds I fain would hide;
    Ne'er to be parted from Thy side;
    Guard me, should the foe assail me;
    Call me when my life shall fail me;
    Bid me come to Thee above,
    With Thy saints to sing Thy love,
    World without end. Amen.

    I'm too used to the standard version to change anytime soon though.

  4. Hello Nick,

    Agreed. In fact, poetically speaking I prefer this version. But alas, like you, I am also too used to the standard version. Fortunately both are beautiful.

    Thanks for commenting!