Grace is the name given to the prayer of thanks we say before eating.
Short statements of gratitude they might also include thanks for what has happened during the day.
There are many forms for grace. Download a page of different graces to encourage your family practice of “grace before meals”
Grace … Before This Meal by Father James Lyons is a collection of graces and reflections designed to draw together those at the table, give thanks for the food and drink provided and enrich the mealtime.
It is available from the publishers Pleroma Christian Supplies and through the Auckland Liturgy Centre.
Some Graces to add to your Family Collection
Time to Pray and Eat
Recite with the same rhythm as the nursery rhyme, Pop Goes the Weasel.
Every day around this time,
We gather at the table,
But before we take a bite,
We STOP and say thank you.
Thanks to those who bought the food,
Thanks to those who cooked it,
Most of all we thank You, Lord,
Now GO ahead and eat it!
(Shout or clap on the words “stop” and “go” if you wish.)
Source: Focus on the Family Canada, 2013
Come dear Lord, be our guest
As we gather together
May our hearts glow with love
Keep us close to you forever.
Love and joy, may they bloom and grow,
Bloom and grow forever.
Bless our homes, bless our friends,
Bless our family forever.
A Simple Grace
God is great and God is Good,
And we thank God for our food;
By God’s hand we must be fed,
Give us Lord, our daily bread. Amen.
The Traditional Grace
Bless us Oh Lord and these your gifts which we are about to receive through your generosity through Christ Our Lord,.
Prayer before Dinner
Full of joy and thankfulness, we say ‘Thank you Lord’ from the bottom of our hearts.
We look at the food that has been prepared by loving hands, we look into the faces of those that love us and whom we love.
And we say thank you Lord, thank you.
A Prayer of Thanks
Come Lord Jesus, our guest to be and bless these gifts bestowed by Thee. Amen.
Most traditions bless food before eating often giving thanks for it. This is very true for Māori. This simple Grace in Te Reo not only thanks God for food but recognises the place of Māori and their language as first peoples. You might also like to pray the Sign of the Cross in Te Reo occasionally.