To lose something is not uncommon. Even the most analytical planner who has a place for everything has, for any number of reasons, misplaced something and cannot seem to find it. We as Christians, however, have a powerful ally on our side: the Omniscient Creator of the Universe. Yes, God knows exactly where everything is at all times. But, then comes the question of how do we approach God about such things? Well, here is a collection of prayers to consider in our quest to be reunited with our lost objects.
Most Catholics are quite familiar with St. Anthony of Padua, the patron saint of lost items. Doing a search for this saint will yield countless stories about how asking for his intersession brings forth lost items. There are actually three documented versions of the prayer, which I have listed here for your reference. This first prayer is a much more formal version of the prayer:
“Blessed be God in His Angels and in His Saints
O Holy St. Anthony, gentlest of Saints, your love for God and Charity for His creatures, made you worthy, when on earth, to possess miraculous powers. Encouraged by this thought, I implore you to obtain for me (here name what you have lost). O gentle and loving St. Anthony, whose heart was ever full of human sympathy, whisper my petition into the ears of the sweet Infant Jesus, who loved to be folded in your arms; and the gratitude of my heart will ever be yours.
This prayer is filled with beautiful language and rings true to the doctrine of intercession. However, it might be a little hard to remember in a time of panic as you search frantically for your phone before heading out for the day. This second prayer is a little less elegant and eloquent than the first, which might make memorization a bit easier.
“Dear St. Anthony, you are the Patron of the poor and the helper of all who seek lost articles. Help me to find what I have lost, (here name what you have lost) so that I will be able to make better use of the time that I will gain for God’s greater honor and glory. Grant your gracious aid to all people who seek what they have lost — especially those who seek to regain God’s grace. Amen.”
This prayer might have a more interesting quality to it as well due to the line “so that I will be able to make better use of the time that I will gain for God’s greater honor.” In prayer, it can be said that it is wiser to approach God with a heart asking for help in a way that will further the kingdom rather than with a heart filled with selfish desire. However, there truly is no correct one way only version of the prayer. In fact, this memorable children’s rhyme can even be the prayer just as easily as the other two:
“St. Anthony, St. Anthony
Please come down
Something is lost
And can’t be found”
While St. Anthony is the commonly accepted Catholic answer to prayer, some have also taken a controversial angle on prayer and offered prayers to the Archangel Chamuel. While the Bible, as accepted by all Christians, only mentions two angels, Michael and Gabriel, Catholics also acknowledge a third angel known as Raphael, who is named in the book of Tobit. Chamuel is one of many angels of controversy, as he is named in the book of Enoch, which only some sects of Judaism and Christianity accept as spiritual truth. Most Catholics reject these angels and write them off as New Age religious teachings. However, the prayer for this Archangel is quite simple:
“Dear Archangel Chamuel, thank you for guiding me to find what I’m looking for, which includes (here name what you have lost).”
There are no shortages for prayers in regards to finding lost possessions. For a Catholic, is would be preferable to stick with the traditional St. Anthony over the controversial Archangel Chamuel, but even sticking with this option there are multiple different prayers. In fact, perhaps the point of these prayers to St. Anthony is that there is no one prayer. In fact, it could even be so simple as:
“Dear Heavenly Father,
Please help me find what I have lost so that I may understand your power and mercy and that my heart may continue to focus upon you.
Ian Tash has written for Cool College helpers, the Haiku Journal, and the L.A. Times (more specifically, the L.A. Affairs column), and also tries to update his Ian Tash Facebook page whenever he has a chance. He has an incredible love of entertainment, both in creating his own and analyzing the works of others. Ian currently lives in Bakersfield, CA and works as a draftsman by trade and dedicated his time to building up local churches and fellow believers.