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Why Do We Say Amen Every After Prayer?

by Clyde Ericson Nolasco

If I have to tally and rank the words I use in a day, amen would have its place at the top along with "quiet" and "listen". As a Catholic and a teacher at a Benedictine institution, as soon as I rise from my bed, I would say a prayer.

I leave our house whispering to God to keep me and my family safe. In our school, we would have daily morning offerings. In each of my class, we would say our opening and closing prayers (not to mention the grace before and after meals). Moreso, I would have my personal prayers in between my own time, especially when stress is taking its toll on me; and end a long day with pleads and thanksgivings.

Like other major religions, denominations and groups, mentioning the word amen signals the end of our prayer. It's the most basic word a faithful would hear and learn. But we do not just hear this during prayers. Sometimes it would be automatic that we would unconsciously blurt it out in agreement on something that was just said, especially on religious situations and matters.

According to Collins and Farrugia, amen is a Hebrew/Aramaic word that is used to call a peg dug in the ground to keep a tent erect, or religiously mean “so it is” or “so be it”. Old Testament stories like from Deuteronomy, Psalms and 1 Chronicles are but amens of praises while in the New Testament, Jesus stresses the other use of the word which is to express our trust in God. He himself closed the prayer he taught us, the The Lord’s Prayer, with amen.