Need Or Trial, Old Age

A Nun’s Prayer About Growing Old

Lord, you know (better that I know) that I am growing older.

Keep me from the habit of thinking I must say something on every subject and on every occasion.

Release me from the craving to straighten out everybody’s affairs.

Make me thoughtful but not moody, helpful but not bossy.

With my vast store of wisdom it seems a pity not to use it all,

but You know I want to still have a few friends at the end.

Keep my mind from the recital of endless details;

give me wings to get to the point.

Seal my lips on my aches and pains.

They are increasing and the love of rehearsing them becomes sweeter as the years go by.

I dare not ask to enjoy the repetitious tales of others, but help me to endure them with patience.  I dare not ask for improved memory, but for a growing humility when my memory seems to clash with the memories of others.

Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I may be mistaken.

Keep me reasonably sweet. I do not want to be like a Saint; some of them are so hard to live with. But a sour old person is one of the crowning works of the devil.

Give me the ability to see good things in unexpected places and talents in unexpected people. And, Lord, give me the grace to tell them so.



– Collected from somewhere by Bruce D. Prewer

– Attributed to a Nun in the 1600s?