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  • Writer's pictureFr. Scott Haynes

Anima Christi, Gregorian Chant

Fr. Scott Haynes directs the Schola Cantorum in a recording for DeMontfort Music and Sony Records. The sublime chant setting of the Anima Christi is a chant that moves the depths of the human soul.


ANIMA CHRISTI chant
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Latin Text

Anima Christi, sanctifica me.

Corpus Christi, salva me.

Sanguis Christi, inebria me.

Aqua lateris Christi, lava me.

Passio Christi, conforta me.

O bone Jesu, 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 jube me venire ad te,

Ut cum Sanctis tuis laudem te,

In saecula saeculorum. Amen.


English 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 Thy Saints I may praise Thee

Forever and ever. Amen.


Overview

For many years the prayer was popularly believed to have been composed by Saint Ignatius of Loyola, as he puts it at the beginning of his Spiritual Exercises and often refers to it. In the first edition of the Spiritual Exercises Ignatius merely mentions it, evidently supposing that the reader would know it. In later editions, it was printed in full. It was by assuming that everything in the book was written by Ignatius that it came to be looked upon as his composition. On this account the prayer is sometimes referred to as the Aspirations of St. Ignatius Loyola.[1]


However, the prayer actually dates to the early 14th century and was possibly written by Pope John XXII, but its authorship remains uncertain. It has been found in a number of prayer books printed during the youth of Ignatius and is in manuscripts which were written 100 years before his birth. The English hymnologist James Mearns found it in a manuscript of the British Museum which dates back to about 1370.


The 2004 edition of the Enchridion Indulgeniarum grants a partial indulgence to the faithful of Christ who pray the Anima Christi after having received Holy Communion.


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