Orthodox Morning Prayers: St. Seraphim of Sarov

*This is the first in a series of posts of Eastern Orthodox morning prayers. I say the prayers in the order that they will be posted, but feel free to rearrange and single out the prayers as you see fit! All Glory and Honor to the Holy Trinity!

-In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Having invoked the Holy Trinity, keep silence for a little bit, so that your thoughts and feelings may be freed from wordly cares. Then recite the following prayers with your whole heart.

– O Lord, cleanse me, a sinner, and have mercy upon me. (prostration)
– I have sinned without measure, have mercy upon me. (prostration)
– God, be merciful to me, a sinner. (prostration)
– O Lord, pardon my sins and transgressions. (prostration)
– We bow before your Cross, O Master, and we glorify your Holy Ressurrection. (prostration)
– O Lord, if I have sinned all my days in word or deed, have mercy upon me, a sinner, for your mercy’s sake. (prostration)
– Glory to you, our God, glory to you.

————–

I love opening my prayers with this Rule by a famous saint. I believe that in it we can see why God decided to grant to St. Seraphim the gift of his Uncreated Light. Each line of the prayer takes full ownership of our sins, but it does not distress about them, rather it implores the unlimited mercy of God. The prostrations at the end of each line are a way of humbling ourselves, of recognizing our place before the King of Creation, and I think that they also help us to get out of our “Me” way of thinking, the selfish, proud, self-attention that so many of us have today.

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