National Catholic Register

Culture of Life

Why Do Catholics ...?

What is a good prayer for the Christmas season?

BY The Editors

December 16-29, 2012 Issue | Posted 12/12/12 at 11:06 AM offers a "Christmas Anticipation Prayer":

"Hail and blessed be the hour and moment in which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight, in Bethlehem, in the piercing cold.

"In that hour, vouchsafe, I beseech thee, O my God, to hear my prayer and grant my desires,
[here mention your request] through the merits of our Savior Jesus Christ and of his blessed Mother. Amen."

Christmas songs, such as Silent Night, are also prayers. The BBC has reported on its Catholic origins:

"Father Joseph Mohr wrote his six-stanza poem Stille Nacht! Heilige Nacht! in 1816, when he was assigned to a pilgrim church in Mariapfarr, Austria. Two years later, after a transfer to St. Nicholas Church in Oberndorf, Austria, the Catholic priest decided he wanted his poem set to music. On Dec. 24, 1818, he asked his friend Franz Gruber to create a melody and guitar accompaniment. The two men sang the carol at Christmas Mass in St. Nicholas Church, with Father Mohr playing his guitar and the choir repeating the last two lines of each verse."


Silent night, holy night.
All is calm; all is bright.

’Round yon virgin, mother and Child.
Holy infant, so tender and mild.
Sleep in heavenly peace.
Sleep in heavenly peace.

Silent night, holy night.
Shepherds quake at the sight.
Glories stream from heaven afar.
Heav’nly hosts sing, "Alleluia."
Christ the Savior is born.
Christ the Savior is born.

Silent night, holy night.
Son of God, love’s pure light.
Radiant beams from thy holy face.
With the dawn of redeeming grace.
Jesus, Lord at thy birth.
Jesus, Lord at thy birth.


Have you always wondered about some aspect of the faith? Or maybe you’d like to know some trivia about Pope Benedict. If you do, email us your question at and look for the answer in an upcoming issue.