The Anima Christi prayer has been on the fringes of my awareness for some time. But only fringes.
For a time, it was thought Ignatius Loyola composed it, as he cites it in the Spiritual Exercises, but that notion has been debunked, I believe.
Our associate pastor leads it after Communion at daily Mass, and I was surprised so many people know it by heart. The translation of it I found some months ago isn’t quite the same, so I find myself stumbling over the words.
The spirituality is a bit foreign, like the emphasis on the wounds of Christ. That’s not really part of mainstream Catholicism these days. (I think you can tell because the old timey cursing that references them is pretty much limited to Shakespeare.)
Here’s the petition:
Hide me in your wounds
And it caught my attention in a few ways. I asked myself, why would I want to be hidden? I suppose safety from danger, but doesn’t a disciple want to be out in the open? In Ignatius’s soldierly sensibility of honor, would he caution his followers to hide? There must be something more to these five words.
Yesterday when I was praying, I wasn’t particularly lamenting anything, I thought. But it’s been a demanding last few days–getting ready for a new semester always is. Plus my wife has had a rather bad spell as of late. Add a small tussle in the office over who should and should not sort incoming snail mail, and maybe I was primed for this insight:
Hide me in your wounds, so I don’t hide in mine.
Any devotees of the Anima Christi out there? What have you heard of this prayer?