Question from Shari VanBlokland on 2/11/2008:
During Mass, when we pray the Our Father, the priest says, "deliver us, Lord, from every evil and protect us..." etc. I was wondering if this portion of the prayer has a specific background or has just been passed along and is of unknown origin. Thank You.
Answer by Colin B. Donovan, STL on 4/20/2008:
This embolism, or interpolation, between the Lord's Prayer and the doxology (For the Kingdom the Power etc.) is very ancient, as Fr. Joseph Jungmann, SJ, the historian of the liturgy notes. He also states that all liturgies, except that of Byzantium, has a similar embolism.
The Roman embolism expands upon the last petition of the Our Father (some other liturgies, the last two), adding the Church's own prayer to that of Christ to deliver us from evil. Following the embolism, the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite has added a doxology (formula of praise), similar to that of most Eastern liturgies, which have this pattern of Our Father - Embolism - Doxology.