Blessing of Expectant Mothers

Artwork: Tintoretto, Jacopo. “Visitation.” circa 1588.

About

The blessing of expectant mothers is a blessing found in the Rituale Romanum for mothers about to give birth.

The Latin text below is directly from the Rituale Romanum1.

The English text below is from Philip T. Weller’s translation of the Rituale Romanum2, with some of the options and the commentary removed for clarity.

Other versions (some English only, some Latin only, some with both side-by-side) are available here:

Benedictio Mulieris Praegnantis in periculis partus

S: Adjutorium nostrum in nomine Domini.

R: Qui fecit caelum et terram.

S: Salvam fac ancillam tuam.

R: Deus meus sperantem in te.

S: Esto illi Domine turris fortitudinis.

R: A facie inimici.

S: Nihil proficiat inimicus in ea.

R: Et filius iniquitas non apponat nocere ei.

S: Mitte ei Domine auxilium de sancto.

R: Et de Sion tuere eam.

S: Domine exaudi orationem meam.

R: Et clamor meus ad te veniat.

S: Dominus vobiscum.

R: Et cum spiritu tuo.

Oremus. Omnipotens sempiterne Deus, qui dedisti famulis tuis in confessione verse fidei aeternae Trinitatis gloriam agnoscere, et in potentia majestatis adorare unitatem: quaesumus; ut ejusdem fidei firmitate haec famula tua N. ab omnibus semper muniatur adversis. Per Christum Dominum nostrum.

R: Amen.

Oremus. Domine Deus, omnium Creator, fortis et terribilis, justus et misericors, qui solus bonus et pius es; qui de omni malo liberasti Israel, faciens tibi patres nostros dilectos, et sanctificasti eos manu Spiritus tui; qui gloriosae Virginis Mariae corpus et animam, ut dignum Filii tui habitaculum effici mereretur, Spiritu sancto cooperante praepardsti; qui Joannem Baptistam Spiritu sancto replesti, et in litero matris exsultare fecisti: accipe sacrificium cordis contriti, ac fervens desiderium famulae tuae N., humiliter supplicantis pro conservatione prolis, quam ei dedisti concipere: custodi partem tuam, et ab omni dolo et injuria duri hostis defende; ut obstetricante manu misericordiae tuae foetus ejus ad lucem prospere veniat, ac sanctae generationi servetur, tibique in omnibus jugiterdeserviat, et vitam consequi meredtur aeternam. Per eumdem Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium tuum: qui tecum vivit et regnat, etc.

R: Amen.

Deinde Mulier aspergatur aqua benedicta, et interim dicatur:

Psalmus 66

Deus misereatur nostri, et benedicat nobis * illuminet vultum suum super nos, et misereatur nostri.

Ut cognoscamus in terra viam tuam: * in omnibus gentibus salutare tuum.

Confiteantur tibi populi Deus: * confiteantur tibi populi omnes.

Laetentur et exsultent genteS: * quoniam judicas populos in aequitate, et gentes in terra dirigis.

Confiteantur tibi populi Deus: confiteantur tibi populi omnes: * terra dedit fructum suum.

Benedicat nos Deus, Deus noster, benedicat nos Deus: * et metuant eum omnes fines terrae.

Gloria Patri. Sicut erat.

S: Benedicamus Patrem, et Filium, cum sancto Spiritu.

R: Laudemus et superexaltemus eum in saecula.

S: Angelis suis Deus mandavit de te.

R: Ut custodiant te in omnibus viis tuis.

S: Domine exaudi orationem meam.

R: Et clamor meus ad te veniat.

S: Dominus vobiscum.

R: Et cum spiritu tuo.

Oremus. Visita, quaesumus Domine, habitationem istam, et omnes insidias inimici ab ea, et a praesenti famula tua N. longe repelle: Angeli tui sancti habitent in ea, qui eam et ejus prolem in pace custodiant, et benedictio tua sit super eam semper. Salva eos, omnipotens Deus, et lucem eis tuam concede perpetuam. Per Christum Dominum nostrum.

R: Amen.

Benedictio Dei omnipotentis, Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus sancti, descendat super te, et prolem tuam, et maneat semper.

R: Amen.

Blessing of an Expectant Mother at the approach of confinement

P: Our help is in the name of the Lord.

All: Who made heaven and earth.

P: Save your servant.

All: Who trusts in you, my God.

P: Let her find in you, Lord, a tower of strength.

All: In the face of the enemy.

P: Let the enemy have no power over her.

All: And the son of iniquity be powerless to harm her.

P: Lord, send her aid from your holy place.

All: And watch over her from Sion.

P: Lord, heed my prayer.

All: And let my cry be heard by you.

P: The Lord be with you.

All: May He also be with you.

Let us pray. Almighty everlasting God, who enable us, your servants, in our profession of the true faith, to acknowledge the glory of the three Persons in the eternal Godhead, and to adore their oneness of nature, their co-equal majesty; grant, we pray, that by steadfastness in that faith this servant of yours, N., may ever be guarded against all adversity; through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.

Let us pray. Lord God, Creator of all things, mighty and awesome, just and forgiving, you alone are good and kind. You saved Israel from all manner of plagues, making our forefathers your chosen people, and hallowing them by the touch of your Spirit. You, by the co- operation of the Holy Spirit, prepared the body and soul of the glorious Virgin Mary to be a worthy dwelling for your Son. You filled John the Baptist with the Holy Spirit, causing him to leap with joy in his mother’s womb. Accept the offering of a humble spirit, and grant the heartfelt desire of your servant, N. who pleads for the safety of the child you allowed her to conceive. Guard the life that is yours; defend it from all the craft and spite of the pitiless foe. Let your gentle hand, like that of a skilled physician, aid her delivery, bringing her offspring safe and sound to the light of day. May her child live to be reborn in holy baptism, and continuing always in your service, be found worthy of attaining everlasting life; through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.

The priest sprinkles the woman with holy water and then adds the following:

Psalm 66

P: May God have pity on us and bless us; * may He let His face shine upon us.

All: So may His way be known upon earth; * among all nations, His salvation.

P: May the peoples praise you, O God; * may all the peoples praise you.

All: May all the nations be glad and exult because you rule the peoples in equity; * you guide the nations on earth.

P: May the peoples praise you, O God; * may all the peoples praise you.

All: The earth has yielded its fruits; * God, our God, has blessed us.

P: May God bless us, * and may all the ends of the earth fear him.

All: Glory be to the Father.

P: As it was in the beginning.

P: Let us bless the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

All: Let us praise and glorify Him forever.

P: God has given His angels charge over you.

All: To guard you in all your paths.

P: Lord, heed my prayer.

All: And let my cry be heard by you.

P: The Lord be with you.

All: May He also be with you.

Let us pray. Lord, we beg you to visit this dwelling, and to drive away from it and from this servant of yours, N., all the enemy’s wiles. Let your holy angels be appointed here to keep her and her offspring in peace; and let your blessing ever rest upon her. Save them, almighty God, and grant them your everlasting light; through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.

May the blessing of almighty God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, come on you and your child, and remain with you forever.

All: Amen.

Sources


  1. Catholic Church. Rituale Romanum Pauli V Pontificis Maximi Jussu Editum Et a Benedicto Xiv Auctum Et Castigatum. Cui Novissima Accedit Benedictiorum Et Instructionum Appendix. 1903. https://archive.org/details/ritualeromanum00cath/mode/2up. ↩︎

  2. Weller, Philip T. Roman Ritual. The Bruce Publishing Company, 1964. https://sensusfidelium.us/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Roman-Rite.pdf. ↩︎

  3. “1. Blessing of an Expectant Mother.” Blessings Directory: Rituale Romanum, https://ritualeromanum.info/blessings-and-other-sacramentals-introduction-and-general-rules/blessings-of-persons/1-blessing-of-an-expectant-mother/. ↩︎