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A Prayer Before Study by St Thomas Aquinas

"Make me quick in understanding, capable of remembering, and disposed for learning..."

Creator beyond all telling, you have beautifully arranged all parts of the universe, and are the fount of light and wisdom. Be pleased to shed your clear beam on the twofold darkness in which my mind was born, removing from me the darkness of sin and ignorance. You make eloquent the tongues of infants: instruct my speech and place on my lips the grace of your blessing. Make me quick in understanding, capable of remembering, and disposed for learning. Give me subtlety in interpreting and grace for speaking. You who are true God and man, and who live and reign forever and ever. Amen.

Who was St Thomas Aquinas?

A famous theologian, Thomas Aquinas (his surname means “from Aquino”, his birthplace) was the son of an Italian nobleman. He became a member of the Dominican Order (Order of Preachers), and died in 1274 aged about fifty.

Although he seemed a slow learner at first (he was fat, and habitually silent, and so was nicknamed the “dumb ox”), his teachers eventually realised he was an enormously talented theologian; he was also a man of deep prayer.

He is best known for his voluminous writings, which include theological works, commentaries on Scripture, and some well-known prayers and hymns. His most famous work is the Summa Theologiae (Compendium of Theology), a systematic treatise covering the whole of Christian theology, which was a standard textbook until the 1960s.

He was declared a Doctor of the Church in 1567. He is often considered a patron saint of study, and of education in general.


Thomas AquinasThis prayer for wisdom is extracted from our ebook Thomas Aquinas. Thomas, the ‘Angelic Doctor’, spent most of his life teaching in universities and writing in his Friary, yet his thought has defined Catholic theology for almost eight hundred years.

Learn more anout this incredible saint by downloading your copy of Thomas Aquinas from your preferred ebook platform.