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Proclaiming the Gospel QUESTION from John MacPhee April 25, 2000 I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask this question. I apologize if it's too trivial.
During mass, after the Gospel is proclaimed, we make the sign of the cross on our forehead, lips and breast. I say a prayer to myself...God cleanse my thoughts, words and soul so that I will be free to hear your Gospel. In a discussion with some friends, about our days as altar boys, I mentioned this and they informed me that not only do I have the prayer wrong, but that the Priest and the Priest alone is supposed to pray when making the three signs of the cross. My inference is, as altar boys (servers) I picked up the prayer from hearing the Priest say it in a whisper. The whisper could even explain why I have the prayer wrong. Have I been so wrong for so long?
John MacPhee Gander, Newfoundland (Along side Iceberg Alley)
ANSWER by Mr. John Miskell on April 25, 2000 Dear John,
Thank you for your question.
Your friends are being too tough on you as there is no set rule regarding this custom. With my thumb, I make a small sign of the Cross on my forehead, lips and heart while praying;
May the Lord Jesus Christ always be on my mind, lips and in my heart. We had a wonderful priest at my parish who always prayed it this way, out loud, and he encouraged us to follow suit. When I bless my sons at bedtime and when they leave for school in the morning, in similar fashion, I make the sign of the Cross on their forehead, lips and heart and pray; May the Lord Jesus Christ always be on your mind, lips and heart. Amen. I hope this helps.
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