The Prayer to the Five Wounds of the Lord - 422 

The Prayer to the Five Wounds of the Lord

The tenth witness, Sister Agnes, the daughter of Messer Oportolo de Bernardo of Assisi, is the first to mention this prayer. She does so in the context of Clare's instruction to her sisters on prayer and declares that she recited the "Prayer of the Five Wounds of the Lord."a While considering her fervent love of the Crucified, the anonymous author of the Legend is clear that Clare "…repeated more frequently the Prayer of the Five Wounds of the Lord so that she might nourish her mind on the delights of the Crucified without any interruption."b Unfortunately neither text presents the actual prayer.

The only study of this generally overlooked prayer is that of Zeffirino Lazzeri who, in 1923, devoted little more than a page to its background and published a "critical" edition of it noting the variants of the manuscripts available to him.c Lazzeri notes that the earliest known edition of the prayer is that of Marianus of Florence who, in the first half of the sixteenth century, offered this introduction to it: "These are the prayers in honor of the five wounds of Jesus Christ which, taught by Saint Francis, Saint Clare used to recite each day. All those who say them devoutly will, each time, acquire a one hundred days indulgence." Nonetheless, Lazzeri observes that there is no evidence that Francis is indeed the author and, in light of the Process and Legend, maintains the same is true of Clare.

Prayer and Praise to the Right Hand:
O Lord Jesus Christ, praise and glory to You for the most sacred wound in Your right hand. Because of this sacred wound grant me the pardon of all the sins I have committed by thought, word, and deed, and by omission. Give me the grace to venerate Your most precious death and these Your sacred wounds worthily; and grant that by Your help I may mortify my body and be able to

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Clare of Assisi: Early Documents, p. 422

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