Saturday, October 09, 2010

Our Blessed Lady's Saturday

Our Lady's Rosary
Dear Mother, I bring Thee roses
Because they are so sweet,
But lilies, my favorite flowers
I am placing at Thy feet.

Accept with each Hail Mary
A rose for Thy crown so bright,
Please don't forget the lilies,
The lilies so pure and white.

Let them be a bond of love
And understanding rare,
And send a blessing from above
In answer to my prayer.

Loneliness would be unknown
If more people came to Thee,
With their trials and sorrows
And said their Rosary.

With each Hail Mary, they would find
Their load much lighter grow,
And in humility, kiss the cross
In peace, would onward go.

by Alice W. Sparks
from Robert, Cyril, Our Lady's Praise in Poetry,
Poughkeepsie, New York: Marist Press, 1944.


Friday, October 08, 2010

Saint Bridget Of Sweden

The Prayers of Saint Bridget

First Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus Christ! Eternal Sweetness to those who love Thee, joy surpassing
all joy and all desire, Salvation and Hope of all sinners, Who hast proved
that Thou hast no greater desire than to be among men, even assuming human
nature at the fullness of time for the love of men, recall all the
sufferings Thou hast endured from the instant of Thy conception, and
especially during Thy Passion, as it was decreed and ordained from all
eternity in the Divine plan.

Remember, O Lord, that during the Last Supper with Thy disciples, having
washed their feet, Thou gavest them Thy Most Precious Body and Blood, and
while at the same time Thou didst sweetly console them, Thou didst foretell
them Thy coming Passion.

Remember the sadness and bitterness which Thou didst experience in Thy Soul
as Thou Thyself bore witness saying: "My Soul is sorrowful even unto

Remember all the fear, anguish and pain that Thou didst suffer in Thy
delicate Body before the torment of the crucifixion, when, after having
prayed three times, bathed in a sweat of blood, Thou wast betrayed by
Judas, Thy disciple, arrested by the people of a nation Thou hadst chosen
and elevated, accused by false witnesses, unjustly judged by three judges
during the flower of Thy youth and during the solemn Paschal season.

Remember that Thou wast despoiled of Thy garments and clothed in those of
derision; that Thy Face and Eyes were veiled, that Thou wast buffeted,
crowned with thorns, a reed placed in Thy Hands, that Thou was crushed with
blows and overwhelmed with affronts and outrages.

In memory of all these pains and sufferings which Thou didst endure before
Thy Passion on the Cross, grant me before my death true contrition, a
sincere and entire confession, worthy satisfaction and the remission of all
my sins. Amen.

Second Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! True liberty of angels, Paradise of delights, remember the horror
and sadness which Thou didst endure when Thy enemies, like furious lions,
surrounded Thee, and by thousands of insults, spits, blows, lacerations and
other unheard-of-cruelties, tormented Thee at will. In consideration of
these torments and insulting words, I beseech Thee, O my Savior, to deliver
me from all my enemies, visible and invisible, and to bring me, under Thy
protection, to the perfection of eternal salvation. Amen.

Third Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Creator of Heaven and earth whom nothing can encompass or limit,
Thou Who dost enfold and hold all under Thy Loving power, remember the very
bitter pain Thou didst suffer when the Jews nailed Thy Sacred Hands and
Feet to the Cross by blow after blow with big blunt nails, and not finding
Thee in a pitiable enough state to satisfy their rage, they enlarged Thy
Wounds, and added pain to pain, and with indescribable cruelty stretched
Thy Body on the Cross, pulled Thee from all sides, thus dislocating Thy

I beg of Thee, O Jesus, by the memory of this most Loving suffering of the
Cross, to grant me the grace to fear Thee and to Love Thee. Amen.

Fourth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Heavenly Physician, raised aloft on the Cross to heal our wounds
with Thine, remember the bruises which Thou didst suffer and the weakness
of all Thy Members which were distended to such a degree that never was
there pain like unto Thine. From the crown of Thy Head to the Soles of Thy
Feet there was not one spot on Thy Body that was not in torment, and yet,
forgetting all Thy sufferings, Thou didst not cease to pray to Thy Heavenly
Father for Thy enemies, saying: "Father forgive them for they know not what
they do."

Through this great Mercy, and in memory of this suffering, grant that the
remembrance of Thy Most Bitter Passion may effect in us a perfect
contrition and the remission of all our sins. Amen.

Fifth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Mirror of eternal splendor, remember the sadness which Thou
experienced, when contemplating in the light of Thy Divinity the
predestination of those who would be saved by the merits of Thy Sacred
Passion, Thou didst see at the same time, the great multitude of reprobates
who would be damned for their sins, and Thou didst complain bitterly of
those hopeless lost and unfortunate sinners.

Through the abyss of compassion and pity, and especially through the
goodness which Thou displayed to the good thief when Thou saidst to him:
"This day, thou shalt be with Me in Paradise." I beg of Thee, O Sweet
Jesus, that at the hour of my death, Thou wilt show me mercy. Amen.

Sixth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Beloved and most desirable King, remember the grief Thou didst
suffer, when naked and like a common criminal, Thou was fastened and raised
on the Cross, when all Thy relatives and friends abandoned Thee, except Thy
Beloved Mother, who remained close to Thee during Thy agony and whom Thou
didst entrust to Thy faithful disciple when Thou saidst to Mary: "Woman,
behold thy son!" and to Saint John: "Son, behold thy Mother!"

I beg of Thee O my Savior, by the sword of sorrow which pierced the soul of
Thy holy Mother, to have compassion on me in all my affliction and
tribulations, both corporal and spiritual, and to assist me in all my
trials, and especially at the hour of my death. Amen.

Seventh Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Inexhaustible Fountain of compassion, Who by a profound gesture of
Love, said from the Cross: "I thirst!" suffered from the thirst for the
salvation of the human race. I beg of Thee O my Savior, to inflame in our
hearts the desire to tend toward perfection in all our acts; and to
extinguish in us the concupiscence of the flesh and the ardor of worldly
desires. Amen.

Eighth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Sweetness of hearts, delight of the spirit, by the bitterness of
the vinegar and gall which Thou didst taste on the Cross for Love of us,
grant us the grace to receive worthily Thy Precious Body and Blood during
our life and at the hour of our death, that they may serve as a remedy and
consolation for our souls. Amen.

Ninth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Royal virtue, joy of the mind, recall the pain Thou didst endure
when plunged in an ocean of bitterness at the approach of death, insulted,
outraged by the Jews, Thou didst cry out in a loud voice that Thou was
abandoned by Thy Father, saying: "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken

Through this anguish, I beg of Thee, O my Savior, not to abandon me in the
terrors and pains of my death. Amen.

Tenth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Who art the beginning and end of all things, life and virtue,
remember that for our sakes Thou was plunged in an abyss of suffering from
the soles of Thy Feet to the crown of Thy Head. In consideration of the
enormity of Thy Wounds, teach me to keep, through pure love, Thy
Commandments, whose way is wide and easy for those who love Thee. Amen.

Eleventh Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Deep abyss of mercy, I beg of Thee, in memory of Thy Wounds which
penetrated to the very marrow of Thy Bones and to the depth of Thy bing, to
draw me, a miserable sinner, overwhelmed by my offenses, away from sin and
to hide me from Thy Face justly irritated against me, hide me in Thy
Wounds, until Thy anger and just indignation shall have passed away. Amen.

Twelfth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Mirror of Truth, symbol of unity, link of Charity, remember the
multitude of wounds with which Thou was covered from head to foot, torn and
reddened by the spilling of Thy adorable Blood. O Great and Universal Pain
which Thou didst suffer in Thy virginal Flesh for Love of us! Sweetest
Jesus! What is there that Thou couldst have done for us which Thou hast not
done! May the fruit of Thy sufferings be renewed in my soul by the faithful
remembrance of Thy Passion, and may Thy Love increase in my heart each day,
until I see Thee in eternity, Thou Who art the treasury of every real good
and every joy, which I beg Thee to grant me, O Sweetest Jesus, in Heaven.

Thirteenth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Strong Lion, Immortal and Invincible King, remember the pain which
Thou didst endure when all Thy strength, both moral and physical, was
entirely exhausted, Thou didst bow Thy Head, saying: "It is consummated!"

Through this anguish and grief, I beg of Thee Lord Jesus, to have mercy on
me at the hour of my death when my mind will be greatly troubled and my
soul will be in anguish. Amen.

Fourteenth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Only Son of the Father, Splendor and figure of His Substance,
remember the simple and humble recommendation Thou didst make of Thy Soul
to Thy Eternal Father, saying: "Father, into Thy Hands I commend My
Spirit!" And with Thy Body all torn, and Thy Heart Broken, and the bowels
of Thy Mercy open to redeem us, Thou didst Expire. By this Precious Death,
I beg of Thee O King of Saints, comfort me and help me to resist the devil,
the flesh and the world, so that being dead to the world I may live for
Thee alone. I beg of Thee at the hour of my death to receive me, a pilgrim
and an exile returning to Thee. Amen.

Fifteenth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! True and fruitful Vim! Remember the abundant outpouring of Blood
which Thou didst so generously she from Thy Sacred Body as juice from
grapes in a wine press.

From Thy Side, pierced with a lance by a soldier, blood and water issued
forth until there was not lift in Thy Body a single drop, and finally, like
a bundle of myrrh lifted to the top of the Cross Thy delicate Flesh was
destroyed, the very Substance of Thy Body withered, and the Marrow of Thy
Bones dried up.

Through this bitter Passion and through the outpouring of Thy Precious
Blood, I beg of Thee, O Sweet Jesus, to receive my soul when I am in my
death agony. Amen.


O Sweet Jesus! Pierce my heart so that my tears of penitence and love will
be my bread day and might; may I be converted entirely to Thee, may my
heart be Thy perpetual habitation, may my conversation be pleasing to Thee,
and may the end of my life be so praiseworthy that I may merit Heaven and
there with Thy saints, praise Thee forever.


Friday At the Foot Of the Cross

Prayer by Saint Alphonsus de Liguori:
Ah, my God! such a chastisement I have often deserved, because I have, through the light which Thou gavest me, renounced sin, and have miserably returned to it. I infinitely thank Thy mercy for not having abandoned me in my blindness by leaving me entirely destitute of light, as I deserved. Great then, O my Jesus! are my obligations to Thee, and great should be my ingratitude, were I again to turn my back upon Thee. No, my Redeemer, the mercies of the Lord I will sing forever. I hope that during the remainder of my life, and for all eternity, I will always sing and praise Thy mercies by loving Thee always, and never more seeing myself bereft of Thy graces. The great ingratitude with which I have hitherto treated Thee, and which I now hate and curse above every evil, will serve to make me weep bitterly over the injuries I have done Thee, and to inflame me still more with the love of Thee, who, after I had given Thee so many grievous offences, have bestowed upon me so many great graces. Yes, I love Thee, O my God! worthy of infinite love. Henceforth Thou shalt be my only love, my only good. O eternal Father! through the merits of Jesus Christ I ask of Thee final perseverance in Thy grace and in Thy love. I know that Thou wilt grant it to me whenever I ask it. But who assures me that I shall be careful to ask this perseverance from Thee? Hence, O my God, I ask perseverance, and the grace always to ask it of Thee. O Mary, my advocate, my refuge, and my hope! obtain for me by thy intercession the gift of constancy in always asking of God the grace of final perseverance. Through the love which thou bearest Jesus Christ, I ask thee to obtain for me this gift.


Thursday, October 07, 2010

Our Blessed Lady Of the Rosary

The history of the feast from The Catholic Encyclopedia.

The Fifteen Promises To Those Who Recite the Rosary given By Our Blessed Lady to Saint Dominic:

1. Whoever shall faithfully serve me
by the recitation of the Rosary, shall
receive signal graces.

2. I promise my special protection
and the greatest graces to all those
who shall recite the Rosary.

3. The Rosary shall be a powerful
armor against hell, it will destroy
vice, decrease sin, and defeat heresies.

4. It will cause virtue and good works
to flourish; it will obtain for souls the
abundant mercy of God; it will with-
draw the hearts of men from the love
of the world and its vanities, and will
lift them to the desire of eternal
things. Oh, that souls would sanctify
themselves by this means.

5. The soul which recommends itself
to me by the recitation of the Rosary,
shall not perish.

6. Whoever shall recite the Rosary
devoutly, applying himself to the
consideration of its sacred mysteries
shall never be conquered by misfor-
tune. God will not chastise him in His
justice, he shall not perish by an
unprovided death; if he be just he
shall remain in the grace of God, and
become worthy of eternal life.

7. Whoever shall have a true
devotion for the Rosary shall not die
without the sacraments of the Church.

8. Those who are faithful to recite the
Rosary shall have during their life and
at their death the light of God and the
plentitude of His graces; at the
moment of death they shall participate
in the merits of the saints in paradise.

9. I shall deliver from purgatory those
who have been devoted to the Rosary.

10. The faithful children of the Rosary
shall merit a high degree of glory in
11. You shall obtain all you ask of me
by the recitation of the Rosary.

12. All those who propagate the holy
Rosary shall be aided by me in their

13. I have obtained from my Divine
Son that all the advocates of the
Rosary shall have for intercessors
the entire celestial court during their life
and at the hour of death.

14. All who recite the Rosary are my
sons, and brothers of my only Son
Jesus Christ.

15. Devotion of my Rosary is a great
sign of predestination.

This is the anniversary of the great Catholic victory over the Moslems at Lepanto. We need another great Catholic victory against a Moslem in Christian clothing who seems to be fooling a lot of people today.

by G.K. Chesterton

White founts falling in the Courts of the sun,
And the Soldan of Byzantium is smiling as they run;
There is laughter like the fountains in that face of all men feared,
It stirs the forest darkness, the darkness of his beard;
It curls the blood-red crescent, the crescent of his lips;
For the inmost sea of all the earth is shaken with his ships.
They have dared the white republics up the capes of Italy,
They have dashed the Adriatic round the Lion of the Sea,
And the Pope has cast his arms abroad for agony and loss,
And called the kings of Christendom for swords about the Cross.
The cold queen of England is looking in the glass;
The shadow of the Valois is yawning at the Mass;
From evening isles fantastical rings faint the Spanish gun,
And the Lord upon the Golden Horn is laughing in the sun.

Dim drums throbbing, in the hills half heard,
Where only on a nameless throne a crownless prince has stirred,
Where, risen from a doubtful seat and half attainted stall,
The last knight of Europe takes weapons from the wall,
The last and lingering troubadour to whom the bird has sung,
That once went singing southward when all the world was young.
In that enormous silence, tiny and unafraid,
Comes up along a winding road the noise of the Crusade.
Strong gongs groaning as the guns boom far,
Don John of Austria is going to the war,
Stiff flags straining in the night-blasts cold
In the gloom black-purple, in the glint old-gold,
Torchlight crimson on the copper kettle-drums,
Then the tuckets, then the trumpets, then the cannon, and he comes.
Don John laughing in the brave beard curled,
Spurning of his stirrups like the thrones of all the world,
Holding his head up for a flag of all the free.
Love-light of Spain--hurrah! Death-light of Africa! Don John of Austria Is riding to the sea.

Mahound is in his paradise above the evening star,
(Don John of Austria is going to the war.)
He moves a mighty turban on the timeless houri's knees,
His turban that is woven of the sunsets and the seas.
He shakes the peacock gardens as he rises from his ease,
And he strides among the tree-tops and is taller than the trees;
And his voice through all the garden is a thunder sent to bring
Black Azrael and Ariel and Ammon on the wing.
Giants and the Genii, Multiplex of wing and eye,
Whose strong obedience broke the sky
When Solomon was king.

They rush in red and purple from the red clouds of the morn,
From the temples where the yellow gods shut up their eyes in scorn;
They rise in green robes roaring from the green hells of the sea
Where fallen skies and evil hues and eyeless creatures be,
On them the sea-valves cluster and the grey sea-forests curl,
Splashed with a splendid sickness, the sickness of the pearl;
They swell in sapphire smoke out of the blue cracks of the ground,--
They gather and they wonder and give worship to Mahound.
And he saith, "Break up the mountains where the hermit-folk can hide,
And sift the red and silver sands lest bone of saint abide,
And chase the Giaours flying night and day, not giving rest,
For that which was our trouble comes again out of the west.
We have set the seal of Solomon on all things under sun,
Of knowledge and of sorrow and endurance of things done.
But a noise is in the mountains, in the mountains, and I know
The voice that shook our palaces--four hundred years ago:
It is he that saith not 'Kismet'; it is he that knows not Fate;
It is Richard, it is Raymond, it is Godfrey at the gate!
It is he whose loss is laughter when he counts the wager worth,
Put down your feet upon him, that our peace be on the earth."
For he heard drums groaning and he heard guns jar,
(Don John of Austria is going to the war.)
Sudden and still--hurrah!
Bolt from Iberia!
Don John of Austria
Is gone by Alcalar.

St. Michaels on his Mountain in the sea-roads of the north
(Don John of Austria is girt and going forth.)
Where the grey seas glitter and the sharp tides shift
And the sea-folk labour and the red sails lift.
He shakes his lance of iron and he claps his wings of stone;
The noise is gone through Normandy; the noise is gone alone;
The North is full of tangled things and texts and aching eyes,
And dead is all the innocence of anger and surprise,
And Christian killeth Christian in a narrow dusty room,
And Christian dreadeth Christ that hath a newer face of doom,
And Christian hateth Mary that God kissed in Galilee,--
But Don John of Austria is riding to the sea.
Don John calling through the blast and the eclipse
Crying with the trumpet, with the trumpet of his lips,
Trumpet that sayeth ha!
Domino gloria! Don John of Austria
Is shouting to the ships.

King Philip's in his closet with the Fleece about his neck
(Don John of Austria is armed upon the deck.)
The walls are hung with velvet that is black and soft as sin,
And little dwarfs creep out of it and little dwarfs creep in.
He holds a crystal phial that has colours like the moon,
He touches, and it tingles, and he trembles very soon,
And his face is as a fungus of a leprous white and grey
Like plants in the high houses that are shuttered from the day,
And death is in the phial and the end of noble work,
But Don John of Austria has fired upon the Turk.
Don John's hunting, and his hounds have bayed--
Booms away past Italy the rumour of his raid.
Gun upon gun, ha! ha!
Gun upon gun, hurrah!
Don John of Austria
Has loosed the cannonade.

The Pope was in his chapel before day or battle broke,
(Don John of Austria is hidden in the smoke.)
The hidden room in man's house where God sits all the year,
The secret window whence the world looks small and very dear.
He sees as in a mirror on the monstrous twilight sea
The crescent of his cruel ships whose name is mystery;
They fling great shadows foe-wards, making Cross and Castle dark,
They veil the plumèd lions on the galleys of St. Mark;
And above the ships are palaces of brown, black-bearded chiefs,
And below the ships are prisons, where with multitudinous griefs,
Christian captives sick and sunless, all a labouring race repines
Like a race in sunken cities, like a nation in the mines.
They are lost like slaves that sweat, and in the skies of morning hung
The stair-ways of the tallest gods when tyranny was young.
They are countless, voiceless, hopeless as those fallen or fleeing on
Before the high Kings' horses in the granite of Babylon.
And many a one grows witless in his quiet room in hell
Where a yellow face looks inward through the lattice of his cell,
And he finds his God forgotten, and he seeks no more a sign--
(But Don John of Austria has burst the battle-line!)
Don John pounding from the slaughter-painted poop,
Purpling all the ocean like a bloody pirate's sloop,
Scarlet running over on the silvers and the golds,
Breaking of the hatches up and bursting of the holds,
Thronging of the thousands up that labour under sea
White for bliss and blind for sun and stunned for liberty.

Vivat Hispania!
Domino Gloria!
Don John of Austria
Has set his people free!

Cervantes on his galley sets the sword back in the sheath
(Don John of Austria rides homeward with a wreath.)
And he sees across a weary land a straggling road in Spain,
Up which a lean and foolish knight for ever rides in vain,
And he smiles, but not as Sultans smile, and settles back the blade....
(But Don John of Austria rides home from the Crusade.)


Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Mid-Week Mix

Ronnie Drew & The Dubliners, Dicey Reilly

The Corries, The Bonnie Ship The Diamond

The Wolfe Tones, The Streets Of New York

Nana Mouskouri, The Ash Grove

Makem & Clancy, Whatever You Say, Say Nothing

Kate Rusby, The Yorkshire Couple

The Irish Rovers, The Orange And the Green

English National Songs, The Vicar Of Bray


Monday, October 04, 2010

Today Would Have Been My Father's 90th Birthday

He died December 31, 1989, at the age of 69.

O God, who hast commanded us to honor our father and our mother; in Thy mercy have pity on the souls of George my father and Kathryn my mother, and forgive them their trespasses; and make me to see them again in the joy of everlasting brightness. Through Christ our Lord.

V. Requiem aeternam dona ei, Domine,
R. Et lux perpetua luceat ei.
V. Requiescat in pace.
R. Amen.

“The Old Man”
The tears have all been shed now
We've said our last good-byes
His soul's been blessed and he's laid to rest
And it's now I feel alone.
He was more than just a father
My teacher, my best friend
He can still be heard in the tunes we shared
When I play them on my own.

I never will forget him for he made me what I am
Though he may be gone memory lingers on
And I miss him ... The Old Man.

As a boy he'd take me walkin'
By mountian, field, and stream
And he showed me things not known to kings
Just secret between him and me.
Like the colors of a pheasant
As he rises in the dawn
And how to fish and make a wish
Beside the holly tree

I never will forget him for he made me what I am
Though he may be gone memory lingers on
And I miss him ... The Old Man.

I thought he'd live forever
He seemed so big and strong
But the minutes fly and the years roll by
For a father and his son
And suddenly when it happened
There was so much left unsaid
No second chance to tell him thanks
For everything he'd done

I never will forget him for he made me what I am
Though he may be gone memories linger on
God, I miss him ... The Old Man.

Phil Coulter's song, performed by George Donaldson of Celtic Thunder:


Saint Francis of Asissi

Saint Francis is a great saint, if you can get past the syrupy nonsense people who claim to be devoted to him claim is his legacy.

Aside from his personal holiness, and I doubt that many could take holiness to a higher level than Francis did, there is his founding of one of the most important orders in the history of Christendom (actually, he founded three orders, and others have sprung up from that tradition and family of orders), his invention of the Christmas creche scene, his extension of the love of Christ to animals and all creation, and his being a stigmatist, his is also one of the most striking conversion stories in the history of the Church.
The Golden Legend

The Catholic Encyclopedia

Saint Francis took mortification of the flesh very seriously. When he found the desires of the flesh beginning to take hold, he used to roll around in thorn bushes, to drive them away. If only moderns did that, I doubt we would have heard anything of a pervert priest scandal these last 8 years.

There was no humbug about Saint Francis. He truly loved those in need, the poor, and all creation. Where friars since his time have grown fat and overfed, with far too much luxury for a mendicant order, he, who came from wealth, lived a life of real poverty. And where modern friars make a show of doing good works institutionally, but then drive the poor from their own door, Saint Francis adopted a radical love for others that involved genuine giving of himself.

Saint Francis entertained an abiding, even fierce desire to give his life for the Faith. He made several efforts to go to Moslem lands, so that he would be martyred. But obstacles prevented his first efforts. But he persisted. When he finally made it to Moslem-controlled territory, the local emir or pasha listened politely to him, discoursed with him, and then sent him back to Italy. Later, when some seven of his followers were martyred by the Moslems, he exclaimed, "Now I have seven true friars minor!". Thwarted in his own effort to die for the Faith, he recklessly undertook dramatic penances, and did things like embracing lepers.

The stigmata he received, like that of Saint Padre Pio, gave constant pain and discharge. Also like Pio, he had the gift of bilocation.

One thing most people don't know about Saint Francis is that he was never ordained a priest. He could never say Mass. All he could do was assist at Mass. Why wasn't he ordained? Was he illiterate? No. Too stupid to learn the Latin? No. He was too humble to take onto himself the role of the priest.

Put aside the phony "Prayer of Saint Francis" which he had nothing to do with, and was not even written until the 20th century, when it was "discovered" by an American bishop visiting Italy. Pray instead this prayer, truly the work of Saint Francis:

Hail Lady, Holy Queen, Holy Mary Mother of God,
Who art the Virgin made Church
And the One elect by the Most Holy Father of Heaven,
Whom He consecrated with His Most Holy beloved Son
And with the Holy Ghost, the Paraclete;
Thou in whom was and is all fullness of grace and every good.

Hail His Palace;
Hail His Tabernacle;
Hail His Home.

Hail His Vestment;
Hail His Handmaid;
Hail His Mother
And hail all thee holy virtues, which through the grace and illumination of the Holy Ghost are infused into the hearts of the faithful, so that from those unfaithful thou make them faithful to God.

Or this prayer, which he said before the Crucifix of San Damiano, when he was given his commission:

All-highest, glorious God, cast Thy light into the darkness of my heart. Give me true faith, firm hope, perfect charity and profound humility, with wisdom and perception, O Lord, so that I may do what is truly Thy holy Will.


Sunday, October 03, 2010

Saint Therese Of The Child Jesus

If today were not a Sunday, it would be celebrated liturgically as the feast of the great Carmelite Theresa (or Therese) of Lisieux.

I think it is no exaggeration to say that she has become the most celebrated female saint since Jeanne de Arc and Bridget of Ireland. Her autobiographical Story Of A Soul is a modern Catholic classic. The spirituality of her "little way" has become a role model for millions of the faithful (and was a source for the spiritual approach to life of Opus Dei's founder St. Josemarie Escriva de Balaguer).

You may explore her poetry in e-book form here.

Saint Therese, please pray for us!


The Nineteenth Sunday After Pentecost

From The Liturgical Year, by Abbot Prosper Gueranger, OSB:

This Gospel has given to the present Sunday the name of the Sunday of the invited to the marriage. And yet, from the very opening of the dominical series, which began with the Descent of the Holy Ghost, the Church gave us the Gospel teaching which she offers to us, now a second time, for our consideration. On the second Sunday after Pentecost, she related to us, from St. Luke,{St. Luke xiv.16--24.} the parable of the great supper, to which many were invited, and which St. Matthew, entering into fuller details, calls a marriage-feast.

Set thus before us, both at the beginning and at the close of the liturgical season over which the holy Spirit reigns supreme, this parable is, as it were, the interpreter of the whole portion of the year which it thus hems in: it is an additional revelation of the true aim of the Church. But how much has the light increased, since the first time we had these mystery-telling allegories! The certain man ( homo quidam ), who made a great supper, and invited many, has become the King, who makes a marriage for His Son, and, in this marriage, gives us an image of the kingdom of heaven. The world's history, too, has been developing, as we gather from the terms respectively used by the two Evangelists. Those who were the first invited, and contented themselves with declining the kindness of the Master of the house, have grown in their impious ingratitude; laying hands on the messengers sent them by the loving kindness {See Time after Pentecost, vol. i., p. 358.} of the King, they treat them with contumely, and put them to death! We have seen the merited punishment inflicted on these deicides, by this Man, who was God Himself, the Father of Israel, now become King of the Gentiles: we have seen how He sent his armies to destroy them, and burn their city. {See Ninth Sunday after Pentecost.} And now at last, in spite of the refusal of the invited of Juda, in spite of the treacherous opposition put by them against the celebration of the nuptials of the Son of God, all things are ready for the marriage, and the banquet-hall is filled with guests.


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