Surrender Prayer

The Surrender Prayer by Fr. Dolindo Ruotolo Changed EVERYTHING

For nearly a year now, my wife and I have been in a phase of serious discernment regarding the next step for our family. This is our story of discovering the Surrender Prayer.

Though we have been blessed with four wonderful children in just five years of marriage, we have begun to face a number of difficulties with such a fast growing family (e.g., cost of living, caring for multiple small children, work-family balance, and more). It has been overwhelming at times, to say the least.

As we entered into this period as a couple about a year ago, we decided to more intentionally seek God’s will in how we could resolve some of these difficulties.

To do this, we knew we needed to both pray more and act.

We made the decision to go through Father Michael Gaitley’s consecration to Divine Mercy and began praying for these intentions together on a daily basis.

surrender novena

And when God opened doors, we went through them. When he closed them, we attempted to trust.

And over the last year, many doors opened. And we experienced many moments of grace.

But, about a month ago, all of those doors closed. And to be honest, both my wife and I began to experience a lot of uncertainty and anxiety.

I’m sad to say it, but we began to lose hope in God’s plan for our family.

Discovering the Surrender Prayer

It was around this time that, after a Sunday mass, a friend introduced to us a powerful prayer that has changed everything: the Surrender Prayer.

Though it’s usually associated with a novena (found below), the prayer on its own is just as powerful:

“O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything.”

After learning about this prayer, my wife and I decided to pray the novena together. And like I said, everything changed.

Well, not our situation. To be honest, we are still figuring everything out. But we are doing so by trusting that God is figuring it all out.

And that’s what has changed—us.

By praying this prayer (not only as a part of the novena but continually on a daily basis) we have received a tremendous gift of peace even amidst the uncertainty that continues to surrounds us.

The Origin of the Surrender Prayer

As I said above, the Surrender Prayer is usually associated with a novena, which is usually referred to as the Surrender Novena.

Both the short prayer and the novena as a whole were written by Servant of God Dolindo Ruotolo (1882-1979), who was an Italian priest of Naples, known for his ability to endure great suffering for love of God, for working many healing miracles on behalf of others, and for his hidden life of deep holiness.

St. Padre Pio, who was a contemporary of Father Dolindo, was known to tell pilgrims who would visit him from Naples, “Why do you come here, if you have Father Dolindo in Naples? Go to him, he’s a saint!”

Though truly a man of great holiness, Father Dolindo would humbly refer to himself as “Mary’s little old man.”

surrender prayer

As a fruit of Father Dolindo’s deep prayer life and closeness to God in suffering, it is known that our Lord spoke directly to him on several occasions. On one of these occasions, our Lord spoke to him the words contained in the Surrender Novena.

By sharing these words from our Lord with the world, Father Dolindo has left behind a great gift that will certainly bring peace and hope to countless anxious and worried souls (including mine!).

The Surrender Novena by Fr. Dolindo

Day 1

Why do you confuse yourselves by worrying? Leave the care of your affairs to me and everything will be peaceful. I say to you in truth that every act of true, blind, complete surrender to me produces the effect that you desire and resolves all difficult situations.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 2

Surrender to me does not mean to fret, to be upset, or to lose hope, nor does it mean offering to me a worried prayer asking me to follow you and change your worry into prayer. It is against this surrender, deeply against it, to worry, to be nervous and to desire to think about the consequences of anything.

It is like the confusion that children feel when they ask their mother to see to their needs, and then try to take care of those needs for themselves so that their childlike efforts get in their mother’s way. Surrender means to placidly close the eyes of the soul, to turn away from thoughts of tribulation and to put yourself in my care, so that only I act, saying, “You take care of it.”

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 3

How many things I do when the soul, in so much spiritual and material need, turns to me, looks at me and says to me, “You take care of it,” then closes its eyes and rests. In pain you pray for me to act, but that I act in the way you want. You do not turn to me, instead, you want me to adapt to your ideas. You are not sick people who ask the doctor to cure you, but rather sick people who tell the doctor how to. So do not act this way, but pray as I taught you in the Our Father: “Hallowed be thy Name,” that is, be glorified in my need. “Thy kingdom come,” that is, let all that is in us and in the world be in accord with your kingdom. “Thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven,” that is, in our need, decide as you see fit for our temporal and eternal life. If you say to me truly: “Thy will be done,” which is the same as saying: “You take care of it,” I will intervene with all my omnipotence, and I will resolve the most difficult situations.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 4

You see evil growing instead of weakening? Do not worry. Close your eyes and say to me with faith: “Thy will be done, You take care of it.” I say to you that I will take care of it, and that I will intervene as does a doctor and I will accomplish miracles when they are needed. Do you see that the sick person is getting worse? Do not be upset, but close your eyes and say, “You take care of it.” I say to you that I will take care of it, and that there is no medicine more powerful than my loving intervention. By my love, I promise this to you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 5

And when I must lead you on a path different from the one you see, I will prepare you; I will carry you in my arms; I will let you find yourself, like children who have fallen asleep in their mother’s arms, on the other bank of the river. What troubles you and hurts you immensely are your reason, your thoughts and worry, and your desire at all costs to deal with what afflicts you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 6

You are sleepless; you want to judge everything, direct everything and see to everything and you surrender to human strength, or worse—to men themselves, trusting in their intervention—this is what hinders my words and my views. Oh, how much I wish from you this surrender, to help you; and how I suffer when I see you so agitated! Satan tries to do exactly this: to agitate you and to remove you from my protection and to throw you into the jaws of human initiative. So, trust only in me, rest in me, surrender to me in everything.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 7

I perform miracles in proportion to your full surrender to me and to your not thinking of yourselves. I sow treasure troves of graces when you are in the deepest poverty. No person of reason, no thinker, has ever performed miracles, not even among the saints. He does divine works whosoever surrenders to God. So don’t think about it any more, because your mind is acute and for you it is very hard to see evil and to trust in me and to not think of yourself. Do this for all your needs, do this, all of you, and you will see great continual silent miracles. I will take care of things, I promise this to you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 8

Close your eyes and let yourself be carried away on the flowing current of my grace; close your eyes and do not think of the present, turning your thoughts away from the future just as you would from temptation. Repose in me, believing in my goodness, and I promise you by my love that if you say, “You take care of it,” I will take care of it all; I will console you, liberate you and guide you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 9

Pray always in readiness to surrender, and you will receive from it great peace and great rewards, even when I confer on you the grace of immolation, of repentance, and of love. Then what does suffering matter? It seems impossible to you? Close your eyes and say with all your soul, “Jesus, you take care of it.” Do not be afraid, I will take care of things and you will bless my name by humbling yourself. A thousand prayers cannot equal one single act of surrender, remember this well. There is no novena more effective than this.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Closing Prayer to Our Lady

Mother, I am yours now and forever.
Through you and with you
I always want to belong
completely to Jesus.

Another Way of Praying the Surrender Prayer

In addition to the novena, I want to share with you another way of praying the Surrender Prayer that I have found to be super powerful.

Whenever you find yourself with a worry or concern, you can use the Surrender Prayer in this way to completely surrender that worry to our Lord:

O Jesus, I surrender (Insert worry here) to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

For example, you can pray: “O Jesus, I surrender my daughter to you, take care of everything!” or “O Jesus, I surrender my finances to you, take care of everything!”

Embracing the Surrender Prayer in Daily Life

Has everything worked out the way my wife and I wanted ever since we started praying this prayer?

No, it hasn’t. But that’s the power of this prayer. It teaches you to let go of what you want and seek what God wants. It teaches you to pray not “This is what I want, so make it happen God…” but “Thy will be done.”

If you can relate to my wife and I in any way and find yourself consumed with worry and anxiety, I urge you to pray the Surrender Prayer. Your life will change. No, you will change.

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