Prayer Rule of St. Seraphim of Sarov


Saint Seraphim of Sarov

Saint Seraphim taught everyone the following prayer rule:

“Let any Christian, upon arising from sleep stand before the holy icons, and read the Lord’s Prayer “Our Father” thrice, in honor of the Most-holy Trinity, then the hymn to the Theotokos: “O Theotokos and Virgin, rejoice, Mary full of grace, the Lord is with Thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, for thou hast borne the Savior of our souls” three times as well, and finally, the Symbol of Our Faith once.  Having completed this rule, let each one attend to the tasks to which he was appointed or to which he is called.

“During work at home or while traveling somewhere, let him quietly read “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.”  If there are others in his vicinity while he is working, let him silently repeat “Lord have mercy,” until supper.

“After supper, upon completing his tasks, let him quietly read “Most Holy Theotokos, save me a sinner,” and let him repeat this until falling asleep.

“Going to bed, let any Christian again read the above-mentioned morning rule.  Thereafter, let him go to sleep, having protected himself with the sign of the Cross.” Fr. Seraphim said “Keeping this rule, it is possible,  to reach Christian perfection, for the three prayers indicated are the foundation of Christianity.  The first, as the payer given [to us] by Christ Himself, is the model for all prayers.  The second was brought from Heaven by the Archangel to greet the Virgin Mary, the Mother of Our Lord.  The Symbol [of our faith] contains in brief all of the salvific dogmas of the Christian Faith.”

To those who for whatever reason could not complete this little rule, Venerable St. Seraphim recommended reading it under whatever circumstance: during lessons, while walking, and even in bed.  He based this advise on the words of the Scriptures “whosoever should call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved…”



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