Our Father and the Hail Mary
of St. Pius X
Lord's Prayer in General
1. Which is the most excellent of all vocal prayers?
The most excellent of all vocal prayers is that which Jesus Christ taught us, that is to
say, the Our Father.
2. Why is the Our Father the most excellent of all prayers?
The Our Father is the most excellent of all prayers because Jesus Christ Himself
composed it and taught it to us; because it contains clearly and in a few words all we can
hope for from God; and because it is the standard and model of all other prayers.
3. Is the Our Father also the most efficacious of prayers?
Yes, it is also the most efficacious of prayers, because it is the most acceptable to God,
since in it we pray in the very words His Divine Son has taught us.
4. Why is the Our Father called the Lord's prayer?
The Our Father is called the Lord's Prayer, precisely because Jesus Christ our Lord has
taught it to us with His own lips.
5. How many petitions are there in the Our Father?
In the Our Father there are seven petitions preceded by an introduction.
6. Say the Our Father.
Our Father who art in Heaven:
1. Hallowed be Thy
2. Thy kingdom
Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
4. Give us this day our daily
forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.
6. And lead us
not into temptation.
7. But deliver us from evil. Amen.
7. When invoking God in the beginning of the Lord's Prayer, why do we call Him Our
In the beginning of the Lord's Prayer we call God Our Father, to foster confidence in His
infinite goodness by the remembrance that we are his children.
How can we say that we are the children of God?
We are the children of God: first, because He has created us in His own image, and
preserves and governs us by His providence; and secondly, because by an Act of special
benevolence He has adopted us in Baptism as brothers of Jesus Christ and co-heirs with
Him to eternal glory.
9. Why do we call God Our Father and not my Father?
We call God Our Father and not my Father, because we are all His children, and hence
we should look on and love one another as brothers and pray for one another.
10. God being in every place, why do we say: Who art in heaven?
God is in every place; but we say: Our Father who art in heaven, to raise our hearts to
heaven, where God manifests His glory to His children.
The First Petition
11. What do we ask in the First Petition when we say: Hallowed be Thy Name?
In the First Petition: Hallowed be Thy Name, we ask that God may be known, loved,
honored and served by the whole world and by ourselves in particular.
12. What do we intend when we ask that God may be known, loved, honored and
served by the whole world?
We intend to beg that infidels may come to the knowledge of the Lord God, that heretics
may recognize their errors, that schismatics may return to the unity of the Church, that
sinners may repent, and that the just may persevere in well-doing.
13. Why do we first of all ask that the Name of God may be sanctified?
We first of all ask that the Name of God may be sanctified, because the glory of God
should be nearer our hearts than all other goods and interests.
14. How can we promote the glory of God?
We can promote the glory of God by prayer, by good example, and by directing to Him
all our thoughts, affections and actions.
The Second Petition
15. What do we mean by the Kingdom of God?
By the Kingdom of God we mean a threefold spiritual Kingdom; that is, the reign of God
in us, or the reign of grace; the reign of God on earth, or the Holy Catholic Church; and the
reign of God in heaven, or Paradise.
16. In the words: Thy Kingdom come, what do we ask with regard to grace?
With regard to grace we beg that God may reign in us by His sanctifying grace, by
which He deigns to dwell within us as a king in his palace; and that He may keep us ever
united to Himself by the virtues of faith, hope and charity, through which He reigns over
our intellect, our heart and our will.
17. In the words: Thy Kingdom come, what do we ask regarding the Church?
Regarding the Church we ask that she may be spread and propagated ever more and
more throughout the world for the salvation of mankind.
In the words: Thy Kingdom come, what do we ask regarding Heaven?
Regarding Heaven we beg to be one day admitted into that Paradise for which we were
created and where we shall be perfectly happy.
The Third Petition
19. What do we ask in the Third Petition: Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven?
In the Third Petition: Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven, we beg the grace to
do the will of God in all things by obeying His Commandments as promptly as the Angels
and Saints obey Him in Heaven; and we also beg the grace to correspond to divine
inspirations and to live resigned to the will of God should He send us tribulations.
20. Is it necessary to do the will of God?
It is as necessary to do the will of God as it is to work out our salvation, because Jesus
Christ has said that they alone who have done the will of His Father shall enter into the
Kingdom of Heaven.
21. In what way can we know the will of God?
We can know the will of God especially by means of the Church and of the spiritual
superiors appointed by God to guide us along the way of salvation; we may also learn His
most holy will from the divine inspirations that come to us and from the very surroundings
in which the Lord has placed us.
22. Should we always recognize the will of God in adversity as well as in prosperity?
Both in prosperity and adversity we should always recognize the will of God, who
directs or permits all things for our good.
23. What do we ask in the Fourth Petition: Give us this day our daily bread?
In the Fourth Petition we beg of God all that is daily necessary for soul and body.
24. What do we ask of God for our soul?
For our soul we ask of God the sustenance of our spiritual life, that is, we pray the Lord
to give us His grace of which we stand in continual need.
25. How is the life of the soul nourished?
The life of the soul is nourished principally by the food of the word of God and by the
Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar.
26. What do we ask of God for our body?
For the body we ask all that is necessary for the sustainment of our temporal life.
27. Why do we say: Give us this day our daily bread, rather than: Give us bread this
We say: Give us this day our daily bread, rather than: Give us bread this day, to exclude
all desire of what is another's; and hence we beg the Lord to help us in acquiring just and
lawful gains, so that we may procure our maintenance by our own toil. And without theft or
28. Why do we say: Give us bread, and not: Give me bread?
We say: Give us, rather than, Give me, to remind us that as everything comes from
God, so if He gives us His gifts in abundance, He does it in order that we may share what
we do not need with the poor.
29. Why do we add: Daily?
We add, Daily, because we should desire that which is necessary to life, and not an
abundance of food and other goods of the earth.
30. What more does Daily signify in the Fourth Petition?
The word Daily signifies that we should not be too solicitous regarding the future, but
that we should simply ask what we need at present.
The Fifth Petition
What do we ask in the Fifth Petition: And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive
them that trespass against us?
In the Fifth Petition: And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive them that trespass
against us, we ask God to pardon us our sins as we pardon those who offend us.
32. Why are our sins called debts?
Our sins are called debts, because we must satisfy God's justice for them either in this
life or in the next.
33. Can those who do not forgive their neighbor hope that God will pardon them?
Those who do not forgive their neighbor have no reason to hope that God will pardon
them; especially since they condemn themselves when they ask God to forgive them as
they forgive their neighbor.
The Sixth Petition
34. What do we ask in the Sixth Petition: And lead us not into temptation?
In the Sixth Petition: And lead us not into temptation, we ask God to deliver us from
temptation either by not allowing us to be tempted, or by giving us grace not to be
35. What are temptations?
Temptations are an incitement to sin that comes from the devil, or from the wicked, or
from our own evil passions.
36. Is it a sin to have temptations?
No, it is no sin to have temptations; but it is a sin to consent to them, or voluntarily to
expose oneself to the danger of consenting to them.
37. Why does God allow us to be tempted?
God allows us to be tempted so as to test our fidelity, increase our virtue, and augment
38. What should we do to avoid temptations?
To avoid temptations we should fly dangerous occasions, guard our senses, receive the
sacraments frequently, and have recourse to the practice of prayer.
The Seventh Petition
39. What do we ask in the Seventh Petition: But deliver us from evil?
In the Seventh Petition: But deliver us from evil, we ask God to free us from evils, past,
present, and future, and particularly from the greatest of all evils which is sin, and from
eternal damnation, which is its penalty.
40. Why do we say: Deliver us from evil and not: From evils?
We say: Deliver us from evil, and not, from evils, because we should not desire to be
exempt from all the evils of this life, but only from those which are not good for our souls;
and hence we beg liberation from evil in general, that is, from whatever God sees would
be bad for us.
41. Is it not lawful to beg liberation from some evil in particular, for example, from
Yes, it is lawful to beg liberation from some evil in particular but always in bowing to the
will of God, who may even ordain that particular affliction for the good of our soul.
42. How do the tribulations, which God sends us, help us?
Tribulations help us to do penance for our sins, to practice virtue, and above all to
imitate Jesus Christ, our Head, to whom it is fitting we should conform ourselves in our
sufferings, if we wish to have a share in His glory.
43. What is the meaning of Amen at the end of the Our Father?
Amen means: So be it; So I do desire; Thus do I pray the Lord; Thus do I hope.
44. To obtain the graces asked in the Our Father is it enough to recite it any way at all?
To obtain the graces asked in the Our Father we must recite it without haste and with
attention; and we must put our heart into it.
45. When should we say the Our Father?
We should say the Our Father every day, because every day we have need of God's
1. What prayer do we usually say after the Our Father?
After the Our Father we say the Angelic Salutation, that is, the Hail Mary, through which
we have recourse to the Blessed Virgin.
2. Why is the Hail Mary called the Angelic Salutation?
The Hail Mary is called the Angelic Salutation, because it begins with the salutation
addressed by the Archangel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary.
3. Whose are the words of the Hail Mary?
The words of the Hail Mary are partly the Archangel Gabriel's, partly St. Elizabeth's, and
partly the Church's.
Which are the words of the Archangel Gabriel?
The words of the Archangel Gabriel are these: Hail, full of grace, The Lord is with
5. When was it that the angel said these words to Mary?
The angel said these words to Mary when he went to announce to her, on the part of
God, the mystery of the Incarnation that was to be wrought in her.
6. What is our object in saluting the Blessed Virgin with the very words of the
In saluting the Blessed Virgin with the words of the Archangel we congratulate her by
recalling to mind the singular privileges and gifts which God has granted her in preference
to all other creatures.
7. Which are the words of St. Elizabeth?
The words of St. Elizabeth are these: Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is
the fruit of thy womb.
8. When was it that St. Elizabeth said these words?
St. Elizabeth, inspired by God, said these words when, three months before she gave
birth to St. John the Baptist, she was visited by the Blessed Virgin, who then bore her
Divine Son in her womb.
9. What do we intend by saying these words?
In saying the words of St. Elizabeth we congratulate the Blessed Virgin on her high
dignity as Mother of God, and we bless God and thank Him for having given us Jesus
Christ through Mary.
10. Whose are the other words of the Hail Mary?
All the other words of the Hail Mary have been added by the Church.
What do we ask in the last part of the Hail Mary?
In the last part of the Hail Mary we beg the protection of the Blessed Virgin during this
life and especially at the hour of death, when we shall have greater need of it.
12. Why do we say the Hail Mary, rather than any other prayer, after the Our Father?
Because the Blessed Virgin is our most powerful advocate with Jesus Christ, and
hence, after having said the prayer taught us by Jesus Christ, we pray the Blessed Virgin
to obtain for us the graces we have asked therein.
13. Why is the Blessed Virgin so powerful?
The Blessed Virgin is so powerful, because, being the Mother of God, she cannot but
be heard by Him.
14. What do the Saints teach us on devotion to Mary?
Regarding devotion to Mary the Saints teach us that those who are truly devout to her
are loved and protected by her with a most tender Mother's love, and that with her help
they are sure to find Jesus and obtain Paradise.
15. What form of devotion to Mary does the Church recommend in a very special
The devotion to the Blessed Virgin which the Church specially recommends is the Holy