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The Peace Prayer of Saint Francis
(although it wasn't actually written by Saint Francis)

O Lord, make me an instrument of Thy Peace!
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is discord, harmony.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sorrow, joy.

Oh Divine Master, grant that I may not
so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.

Surprisingly, the Peace Prayer of Saint Francis was not actually written by Saint Francis!

This beautiful prayer, although often mistakenly attributed to Saint Francis, does not appear in any known writings of Saint Francis.

The prayer was most likely written in France in the early 1900's, perhaps by Father Bouquerel, a Catholic Priest.

The first known appearance of this inspiring prayer was in 1912 (some 700 years after the death of Saint Francis) when it was published in the French magazine La Clochette.

It is commonly known as the Peace Prayer of Saint Francis because it was often seen printed on a small card which had a picture of Saint Francis on one side and this beautiful prayer on the other side. However, the card did not make any claim that the prayer was written by Saint Francis.

So, ironically, this beautiful prayer, which is so highly revered around the world, was not actually created by Saint Francis.

Original French text of the Peace Prayer:

Belle prière à faire pendant la Messe

Seigneur, faites de moi un instrument de votre paix.
Là où il y a de la haine, que je mette l'amour.
Là où il y a l'offense, que je mette le pardon.
Là où il y a la discorde, que je mette l'union.
Là où il y a l'erreur, que je mette la vérité.
Là où il y a le doute, que je mette la foi.
Là où il y a le désespoir, que je mette l'espérance.
Là où il y a les ténèbres, que je mette votre lumière.
Là où il y a la tristesse, que je mette la joie.
Ô Maître, que je ne cherche pas tant à être consolé qu'à consoler, à être compris qu'à comprendre, à être aimé qu'à aimer, car c'est en donnant qu'on reçoit, c'est en s'oubliant qu'on trouve, c'est en pardonnant qu'on est pardonné, c'est en mourant qu'on ressuscite à l'éternelle vie.

   Source: La Clochette, n 12, déc. 1912, p. 285.


The first known translation published in English was in 1936 in the book Living Courageously, by Kirby Page, a Disciples of Christ minister, who erroneously attributed the prayer to Saint Francis of Assisi.



Saint Francis of Assisi
      baptised as
Giovanni di Bernadone
b. 1182 -- d. 1226 A. D.



For more information regarding the origin of the prayer, please see the following web sites:

The Origin of the Peace Prayer of Saint Francis

The Story behind the Peace Prayer of Saint Francis

For additional information about the life of St Francis:

Catholic Encyclopedia Biography of Saint Francis

Franciscan Archive

US National Shrine of Saint Francis

Available books:

            Amazon.com books related to the prayer of St Francis