Catholic Medical Quarterly Volume 70(2) May 2020

Prayers for Coronavirus and other pandemics

Window Canterbury Cathedral

Now is a goodtime to publish some prayers for pandemics and plagues. Bishop Keenan recommends the Protection prayer (below) followed by the Rosary each day until the crisis ceases.

We thought you would want to know about this prayer initiative being introduced by Bishop John Keenan. In short, he is recommending that we Pray the Protection Prayer (below) followed by the Rosary each day until the crisis ceases.


Prayer for God’s protection in the time of any common plague of sickness

Almighty God, who in thy wrath didst send a plague upon thine own people in the wilderness, for their obstinate rebellion against Moses and Aaron; and also, in the time of king David, didst slay with the plague of pestilence threescore and ten thousand, and yet remembering thy mercy didst save the rest: Have pity upon us miserable sinners, who now are visited with great sickness and mortality; that like as thou didst then accept of an atonement, and didst command the destroying Angel to cease from punishing, so it may now please thee to withdraw from us this plague and grievous sickness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

An act of perfect contrition

Perfect contritionThrough an act of Perfect Contrition, you receive pardon for your sins outside of confession, even mortal sins, on condition that you determine to amend your life and make a firm resolution to go to sacramental confession as soon as this becomes possible for you.

Perfect Contrition is a grace from God, so sincerely ask for this gift throughout the day prior to making your act of contrition: "My God, grant me perfect contrition for all my sins".


  1. In reality or imagination kneel at the foot of a crucifix and say to yourself: "Jesus, my God and my Saviour, in the midst of your agony, you remembered me, you suffered for me, you wished to wipe away my sins".
  2. Contrition is 'perfect' if you repent of your sins because you love God and are sorry for offending Him and causing the sufferings of Christ on the cross. Before the Crucified Christ remember your sins, repent of them because they have brought our Lord to His sufferings on the Cross. Promise him, that with His help, you will not sin again.
  3. Recite, slowly and sincerely, an act of contrition focused on the goodness of God and your love of Jesus: "O my God, because you are so good,I am very sorry that I have sinned against you and by the help of your grace I will not sin again. Amen".
  4. Make a firm resolution to go to sacramental confession as soon as practically possible.


A spiritual communion

Spiritual CommunionThe key to Spiritual Communion is to grow in your heart a constant desire for the Blessed Sacrament.

  1. If you are aware of serious or mortal sin, make an Act of Perfect Contrition.
  2. Imagine the sacred words and actions of the Mass or watch online or on TV.
  3. Make all those acts of faith, humility, sorrow, adoration, love and desire that you usually express before Holy Communion.
  4. Desire, with earnest longing, to receive our Lord present — Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity — in the Blessed Sacrament.
  5. Say this prayer of St. Alphonsus de Ligouri:
    "My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Blessed Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire You in my soul. Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. As though You are already there, I embrace You and unite myself wholly to You; do not let me ever be separated from You. Amen."
  6. After moments of silent adoration make all those acts of faith, humility, love, thanksgiving and offering that you usually express through prayers after Holy Communion.