Prayer to Holy Spirit by St. Augustine : Summary

Prayer to Holy Spirit

Hymn: Augustine defined a hymn as praise to God that is sung. Such singing of words about the Word ties words and music together closely. For Martin Luther, it means music is next to the Word of God.

According to St. Augustine, we need not pray for what we need because God already knows what we need before we even ask. Instead, we ought to pray, he suggests, to increase our desire for God, and so that we might be able to receive what He is preparing to give us.

Prayer to Holy Spirit

Breathe into me, Holy Spirit,

That my thoughts may all be holy.

Move in me, Holy Spirit,

That my words may, too, be holy.

Attract my heart, Holy Spirit,

That I may love only what is holy.

Strengthen me, Holy Spirit,

That I may defend all that is holy.

Protect me, Holy Spirit,

That I may always be holy.


This simple poem from St. Augustine of Hippo is a perfect prayer to stay open to the Holy Spirit and call upon it to help one be more holy.

When I went through this song, the music streamed out from me. It was no work of my own. The Holy Spirit propelled me. The simple melody and homophonic harmonies complement the content and the sincere prayer of the faithful.

The long note duration at the start of the expression lends a pleading nature as we call upon the Holy Spirit to come and fill us with more heavenliness. The development of the music falls within the best rhythm of the syllables. The important words are stressed – breathe, spirit, thoughts, holy. The short raises and falls of the melody lends a contemplative nature to the music.

The culmination comes at where the content shouts out, “Attract my heart”. The voices rise and widen, pleading for the Holy Spirit to enable us to cherish what is heavenly. This is a definitive desire we ought to have in light of the fact that God is all that is holy. In our weak mankind, we can’t do this all alone. So we call upon the Holy Spirit and elegance to support us.

Have something to say

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.