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Category Archives: Devotions

THE PRAYER OF THE HEAVENLY COURT

THE PRAYER OF THE HEAVENLY COURT

THE PRAYER OF THE HEAVENLY COURT (as revealed to St Lutgarde, whose memorial is on the 16th of June)

“O all-holy and all-merciful Redeemer, Source of all graces, and our most kind Jesus! Out of incrompehensible love for us poor children of Eve, hast thou left thy seat on the right hand of thy Heavenly Father, and willed to clothe thyself with our helplessness and poverty.
Nay, the more surely to win us to love thee in return, thou hast made thyself helpless and poor beyond us all. No possible trouble, no possible toil, hast thou spared thyself in order to save us from the wicked enemy, and make us the children of thy Father in Heaven.
Bitterly do I grieve that up till now, I, a valueless and wretched worm of earth, have so little understood the excess of thy Love, and have given thee such poor thanks for all the hardships, pains and martyrdom thou hast bourne for me.
And therefore do I now offer up to thee this my unworthy prayer, in honour of thy most life and sufferings and death, and of every year and day and hour thou didst spend on earth for the salvation of lost and sinful men.
And I offer thee too, from the inmost depths of my heart, all the myriad acts of praise and love and gratitude of the nine Choirs of holy Angels, and indeed of all creatures from the first moment of their creation until now, and all the acts made by the Most Blessed Virgin Mary with the greatest possible love and devotion since her Immaculate Conception to this very day, together with those she will not cease to make through all the instants of Eternity.
And I offer thee these acts that I may thank thee perfectly for all thou hast done for me:
1. For thy choice from all Eternity of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary to be the Mother of God;
2. For her Immaculate Conception, and her preservation from every spot of original sin, in which all other mortals are conceived and born;
3. For the most pure nativity of thy Immaculate Mother, which shed a light over the whole world and caused joy in Heaven;
4. For thine own wonderful Conception by the power of the Holy Ghost in the virgin womb of thy chosen Mother which was announced by the Archangel Gabriel;
5. For the first journey thou didst take, hidden in the most pure womb of thy Holy Mother, a journey over the hills to thy cousin Elizabeth and her child John – John who, even as thou didst, then lay hidden;
6. For thy holy Nativity, when thou didst come into the world in the greatest poverty and wast born in a stable amid senseless beasts, without even a pillow on which to lay thy Sacred Head, or clothes wherewith to warm and protect thy tender limbs;
7. For the great honour thou didst vouchsafe to receive from the Adoration of the Three Wise Men and from their costly symbolic gifts – gold, and frankincense, and myrrh;
8. For thy first blood-shedding at the Circumcision, which thou didst suffer for our sakes and out of humble obedience to the Law of Moses;
9. For thy most holy Presentation in the Temple at Jerusalem by thy Blessed Mother, in accordance with the Law of Moses;
10. For the bitter persecution which began even with thy tenderest years, and which drove thee into the godless land of Egypt and kept thee there for a long space of time;
11. For thy most dear Mother’s anxious search for thee, and then her joyful finding of thee amid the doctors in the Temple, after she had sought thee for three days with bitter grief and pain;
12. For the submission thou didst show to Mary and Joseph at Nazareth rendering them all manner of humble, filial services;
13. For all thy teaching and preaching, for thy hard and dangerous journeys, and especially for all the fatigue and toil thou didst undergo for our salvation;
14. For thy most holy fast of forty days, and thy constant, fervent prayers in the desert;
15. For thy great and glorious miracles, worked to convince the stubborn people;
16. For thine agonized prayer and bloody sweat in the Garden of Gethsemane, when shuddering and sorrowful unto death, thou wert yet perfectly resigned to thy Father’s Will;
17. For the false kiss with which the faithless Judas betrayed thee and delivered thee into the hands of wicked men;
18. For the painful bands and cruel cords of thine infamous captors, and for their grievous dragging and pulling of thee over stones and through water and briars;
19. For the many false accusations devised and brought against thy most holy Person before Annas and Caiaphas, Pilate and Herod;
20. For the most painful treatment meted out to thee when thou was ignominously drawn from one unjust Judge to another;
21. For the hard and worse than blasphemous blow thou didst receive on thy most Holy Face from a servant of the High Priest;
22. For the copious and most painful bloodshedding when every part of thy most holy Body was torn by the rods and scourges of the executioners;
23. For thy nakedness, and the bitter shame thou didst experience when most of thy garments were torn from thee and thou wert thus bound to the pillar before all the crowd;
24. For the jeering, scoffing, and mock genuflections by which godless people ridiculed thee to thy holy Face;
25. For the sharp pressure on thy sacred Head of the crown of thorns, which caused thy Precious Blood to flow down over thy Face;
26. For thy piteous appearance before Pilate, who by his exclamation “Behold the man” tried to move the people to compassion;
27. For the sentence pronounced on thee by Pilate, for the manner in which thou wast led forth to die, and for the heavy weight of the Cross;
28. For thy dolorous meeting with thy sorrow-stricken Mother and the other holy women who had followed thee on the Path to Calvary and shed tears of pity over thee;
29. For the painful removal of most of thy clothing to the renewal of thy wounds, and for the merciless nailing to the wood of the Cross,as also for all the priceless words spoken on the Cross, and the final surrender of thy Spirit;
30. For thy glorious Resurrection on the third day after thy sufferings, when thou didst appear to thy Mother, thy Disciples and Apostles, and after that to many others;
31. For thy wonderful Ascension into Heaven and glorious return to thy Heavenly Father, when thine earthly pilgrimage was ended and thou hadst triumphed victoriously over the world and Satan;
32. For the wonderful fiery Descent of the Holy Ghost on thy Disciples and Apostles and thy most beloved Mother on the holy Day of Pentecost;
33. For the lordly triumph thou didst celebrate when thou didst assume thy beloved Mother, body and soul, into Heaven;
34. For thy festival of joy, in which were associated the Father and the Holy Ghost, at the exaltation of thy most glorious Mother over all the Choirs of Angels, and at her Coronation as the Queen of Heaven;
For all these, and more especially for every beat of thy Heart and every act of love, for all thy thought and desires, for all the silent and the uttered prayers which thou didst offer on earth, and still dost offer in the thou didst offer while on earth, and still dost offer in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar – for all these I tender thee a thousand thanks, and ask thee most humbly that thou wouldst grant to me and to all who have commended themselves to my prayers, or for whom I ought to pray, perfect contrition for our sins and a firm determination never to offend thy Divine Majesty, together with the grace of final perseverance. Grant that I and all men may enjoy thy grace here, and after this toilsome life is over may be received into the company of thine elect, and be united with them to the Source of Eternal Joy – which is none but thou thyself, O dearest Lord. And may we be permitted to gaze at last on thy most holy Face, Who with the Father and the Holy Ghost livest and reignest, God, for ever and ever. Amen.”

 

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OBLATION IN HONOUR OF THE PRECIOUS BLOOD

OBLATION IN HONOUR OF THE PRECIOUS BLOOD

Eternal Father! we offer thee the most Precious Blood of Jesus, shed for us with such great love and bitter pain from His Right Hand; and through the merits and efficacy of that Blood, we entreat thy Divine Majesty to grant us thy holy benediction, in order that we may be defended thereby from all our enemies; and be set free from every ill; whilst we say, May the Blessing of Almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, descend upon us and remain with us for ever.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father. 

– St Anthony’s Treasury, 1916

 

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CHAPLET OF THE FIVE WOUNDS

CHAPLET OF THE FIVE WOUNDS

THE BEADS OF THE FIVE WOUNDS

V. Incline unto my aid, O God!

R. O Lord, make haste to help me.

V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.

R. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

 

Holy Mother! pierce me through;

In my heart each Wound renew

Of my Saviour Crucified. 

 

First Wound. – The Left Foot. 

My Crucified Jesus, I devoutly adore the painful Wound of thy Left Foot. Ah! by the pain which thou didst feel therein, and by the blood which thou didst shed from that foot, grant me grace to fly the occasions of sin, and not to walk in the way of iniquity, which leads to perdition.

Glory be to the Father, etc., five times. One Hail Mary and Holy Mother, pierce me, etc., as above. 

Second Wound. – The Right Foot. 

My Crucified Jesus, I devoutly adore the painful Wound of thy Right Foot! Ah! by the pain which thou didst feel therein, and by the blood which thou didst shed from that foot, grant me the grace to walk constantly in the way of Christian virtue, even to the entrance of Paradise.

Glory be to the Father, etc., five times. One Hail Mary and Holy Mother, pierce me, etc., as above. 

Third Wound. – The Left Hand. 

My Crucified Jesus, I devoutly adore the painful Wound of thy Left Hand. Ah! by the pain which thou didst feel therein, and by the blood which thou didst shed from that hand, deliver me from being found at thy left hand, with the reprobate, at the last judgment.

Glory be to the Father, etc., five times. One Hail Mary and Holy Mother, pierce me, etc., as above. 

Fourth Wound. – The Right Hand. 

My Crucified Jesus, I devoutly adore the painful Wound of thy Right Hand. Ah! by the pain which thou didst feel therein, and by the blood which thou didst shed from that hand, bless my soul, and conduct it to thy kingdom.

Glory be to the Father, etc., five times. One Hail Mary and Holy Mother, pierce me, etc., as above. 

Fifth Wound. – The Side. 

My Crucified Jesus, I devoutly adore the Wound in thy Sacred Side. Ah! by the blood which thou didst shed from it, enkindle in my heart the fire of thy love, and give me grace to persevere in loving thee to all eternity.

Glory be to the Father, etc., five times. One Hail Mary and Holy Mother, pierce me, etc., as above. 

 

 

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SALUTATIONS OF THE SACRED FACE

SALUTATIONS OF THE SACRED FACE

Hail, adorable Face of Jesus, disfigured by blows, and defiled by spittle in the day of the Passion!

Hail, Sacred Face, mocked and blindfolded by the Jews!

Hail, Blessed Eyes, which wept for our sins!

Hail, Blessed Ears, assailed by blasphemies and insults!

Hail, Blessed Mouth, filled with words of tenderness and benediction for all men, but embittered in return with gall!

Hail, Noble Brow, so often bedewed with sweat and pierced for us with cruel thorns!

Hail, Sacred Face, so lovely in thy disfigurement, so noble in thine a basement!

Hail, Sacred Face of the Man of Sorrows, outraged upon earth, triumphant, adored and glorified in Heaven! Praise, thanksgiving, and love be rendered thee for ever and ever.

– St Anthony’s Treasury, 1916

 

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“MEDITATE UNCEASINGLY ON THIS MYSTERY OF LOVE”

“MEDITATE UNCEASINGLY ON THIS MYSTERY OF LOVE”

The Sacred Passion of our Blessed Lord is the peculiar and essentially necessary devotion of the children of St Francis, “for our Lord has chosen us,” says our Seraphic Father, “not only to carry the cross ourselves, but, by our example and teaching, to induce others to do the same, that united with them we may tread in the footsteps of Jesus Christ our Lord.”

HE SAW NOTHING ON EARTH BUT JESUS CHRIST, AND HIM CRUCIFIED

Hence he earnestly exhorts his Brethren to meditate unceasingly on this mystery of love. “Have always before your eyes,” he used to say “the way of humility, poverty, and the Holy Cross by which our Saviour Jesus Christ redeemed us.” Like the Great Apostle, he saw nothing on earth but Jesus Christ, and Him Crucified: “My mind is so fully occupied with the consideration of the Passion of my Lord, that, were I to live until the end of time, I should require no other subject for my thoughts.”

I SHOULD REQUIRE NO OTHER SUBJECT FOR MY THOUGHTS

This continual remembrance of the sufferings of his “Beloved Crucified” Saviour made such an impression on his mind and heart that he could not restrain his sighs and tears. When reproached for this, he answered: “I weep for the sufferings of my Lord Jesus Christ, and I ought not be ashamed to weep over them before the whole world.

TRANSFORMED BY THE FIRE OF LOVE

This love of Jesus Crucified obtained for him the signal honour of bearing on his body the Stigmata of his Saviour. St Bonaventure thus describes this wonderful prodigy: “On the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, whilst praying in the morning on the side of the mountain, St Francis beheld a Seraph, having six wings inflamed with the most resplendent fire, descending to him from the height of heaven. And as he flew with great swiftness towards the man of God, there appeared between the wings, the form of one crucified, having his hands and feet stretched out and fixed on the cross… When he beheld this vision he marvelled greatly, and his heart was filled with mingled joy and sorrow; and he at once clearly understood that he was to be transformed into Christ crucified, not by the martyrdom of the flesh, but by the fire of love. The vision left behind it a marvellous fervour in his heart, and a no less wonderful impression on his flesh; for nails began immediately to appear in his hands, and in his feet, and on his right side a red wound, as though it had been pierced with a lance; from this wound blood often flowed.”

– St Anthony’s Treasury, 1916

 

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A MESSAGE OF LOVE TO JESUS CRUCIFIED

A MESSAGE OF LOVE TO JESUS CRUCIFIED

This Devotion invites all the Faithful, like so many loving children, to come every evening before the Crucifix to make an act of deep sorrow for their sins and to kiss the bruised and wounded feet of Jesus Crucified “good-night,” by saying with loving reverence and contrition the aspiration:

“We adore thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, and we bless thee, for through thy Holy Cross thou hast redeemed the world. – My Jesus, mercy.”

This is a night telegram of love, a wireless message to His Sacred Heart, purifying, ennobled, sanctifying and uplifting every heart that makes this act of contrite love. It is a protest of love, making reparation for all the insults and blasphemies hurled against Almighty God the whole day long. Let us practise this beautiful Devotion as a means of intimate spiritual communication with God’s great loving Sacred Heart – the centre of all Love – for the benefit of all our friends. By kissing His Dear Wounded Feet for each one of them we will win mercy for all our dear ones, living and dead, we will interest His Sacred Heart in their conversion and become helpers of the salvation of many poor sinners, even the most hardened. 

– St Anthony’s Treasury, 1916 

 

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PRAYER TO ST JOSEPH

PRAYER TO ST JOSEPH

(To be said after the night prayers)

Glorious St Joseph, who wast chosen by Almighty God to be the foster-father of the Word made flesh, the comforter of His most holy Mother, the faithful co-operator among men in His greatest design, obtain for me to do in all things the Will of the Father, to cherish in my heart the mysteries accomplished in the person of the Son, and by the abundant graces of the Holy Ghost to persevere, pure of heart and chaste of body, in the service of God.

– St Anthony’s Treasury, 1916

 
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Posted by on December 22, 2019 in Devotions

 

THEE, LORD OF EVERY AGE, WE SING (HYMN)

THEE, LORD OF EVERY AGE, WE SING (HYMN)

Thee, Lord of every age, we sing:

Thee, Christ, we hail the nations’ King;

Confess thy right thy realm to find

Within the hearts of all mankind.

 

The hate-swayed mob cries, pride-enticed,

They will not have thy kingdom, Christ;

But we exultant round thy throne

Thy reign o’er all creation own.

 

O Christ, our Prince, that bringest peace,

Let every rebel impulse cease,

And gather into thy one fold

The wanderers whom thy love doth hold.

 

For this thine arms wide-stretched in plea

Hung bleeding on the atoning Tree;

For this the spear’s revealing dart

Laid bare thy love-emflamed Heart.

 

For this thou dost thy glory hide,

Outpouring from thy pierced side

The riches of thy love divine

Beneath the veils of bread and wine.

 

May realms and they that rule them vie

With solemn rites to raise thee high;

May laws and arts thy servants be,

All life be sanctified in thee.

 

Their kingly gear and royal state

Kings to their King shall consecrate;

Subjects their all before thee lay

In service of thy gentle sway.

 

Jesu, to thee, beneath whose sway

All earth shall bow, all praise we pay;

With Father and with Spirit be

All glory thine eternally.

Amen.

 

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2019 in Devotions

 

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WHY DID THE VIRGIN MARY APPEAR AT KNOCK?

WHY DID THE VIRGIN MARY APPEAR AT KNOCK?

A meditation on Knock will ultimately lead us to the Lamb of God, who for us was slain on Calvary, and by whose Precious Blood our souls that have been defiled by sin are washed white as snow. (Rev. Patrick O’Carroll) 

Pilgrimages to Knock began soon after the apparition and have continued ever since. About 250.000 pilgrims go there every year. This is a remarkable number in view of the fact that Knock has no train or bus service and that the shrine has not been formally approved by the Holy See. During World War II, 10.000 Masses were offered in honour of Our Lady of Knock for the intention of keeping Ireland at peace. Many of the people credit Our Lady of Knock with keeping Ireland out of the war just as the Portuguese people give credit to Our Lady of Fatima for keeping their country at peace.

WHAT DID THE APPARITION MEAN? 

What did the apparition mean? At Paris, La Salette, Lourdes, and Fatima, our Lady spoke. We have her own words on record. At Knock, she said nothing. Yet we can be certain that she did not appear without an important purpose.

IN IRELAND, THE PEOPLE HAD CLUNG TO THE CATHOLIC FAITH DESPITE OF BITTER PERSECUTION

In most of Europe – in most of the [Western] world, for that matter – people had turned away from God. Even in such supposedly Catholic countries as Spain, France, Italy and Portugal, men were worshipping reason and science instead of God. But in Ireland, the people had clung to their faith despite three and a half centuries of bitter persecution. They had retained their love for the Mass during all the years that the Mass had been officially outlawed. They had never faltered in their devotion to the Blessed Mother, a devotion that had been brought to them by St Patrick himself. Every night, in thousands of miserable huts all over the island, families had knelt on the dirt floors to say the Rosary together.

SHE COMFORTED THEM IN THEIR AFFLICTIONS

It seems likely that Mary appeared in Ireland to reward the people for their devotion and to comfort them in their afflictions. Many authorities on Knock point out that Mary was wearing a crown. Thus, they say, she represented herself as Queen of Heaven, Queen of Ireland, Mediatrix of All Graces.

“The mission of Mary to Knock was not one of rebuke or complaint against our people, as was the case at La Salette and Lourdes, against the prevailing vices and abuses that were shaking the very foundations of the faith in France in those days,” says the Very Rev. Jarlath Royanne, O. Cist. “Neither was it a call to do penance on those occasions. No, Mary’s mission to her faithful Irish people that day was rather one of compassion and comfort, with an implied admonition, no doubt, of dangers ahead, and the imperative need of prayer.”

ON THE EVE OF THE OCTAVE OF THE FEAST OF THE ASSUMPTION

Every early account of the apparition points out that it occurred on the eve of the octave of the feast of the Assumption. Did Mary intend to establish this connection between Knock and Fatima? At any rate, the coincidence is interesting. It reminds us that Mary, Our Queen, has an Immaculate Heart filled with an almost infinite love for us.

ST JOSEPH’S APPEARANCE 

The two saints who appeared with Mary were the two people – next to our Lord Himself – who were most closely associated with her while she was in this world. St Joseph cared for her before Jesus was born, and he watched over her and Jesus for some years after that. As head of the Holy Family, he is the model husband and father. He is also the Patron of the Universal Church. In the apparition he was looking at her in a reverential manner. It seems likely that he represented all families and also the Universal Church in paying homage to the Queen of Heaven.

ST JOHN THE EVANGELIST 

St John was Mary’s guardian after our Lord’s death. He stood with her beneath the cross while Jesus was giving His life for the world. It was to him that our Lord almost with His dying breath said, “Behold thy mother.” St John represented all of us that day.

So St John, by his presence, reminds us that Mary is our spiritual mother. But he does more than that. He was garbed as a bishop and was reading from a Mass book. He stood next to the altar on which was the sacrificial lamb. St John was our Lady’s priest. After the Resurrection he celebrated Mass for her, renewing the sacrifice of Calvary, bringing her Son down upon the altar. It is also interesting to note that in the Apocalypse, St John refers to our Lord as a lamb twenty-seven times.

A FULLER APPRECIATION OF THE HOLY MASS

“A meditation on Knock,” says Rev. Patrick O’Carroll, C.S.Sp., “will ultimately lead us to the Lamb of God, who for us was slain on Calvary, and by whose Precious Blood our souls that have been defiled by sin are washed white as snow. Our attention is above all turned to the same Lamb of God that is mystically immolated on every altar, when the Holy Mass is celebrated. Knock, then, calls for a fuller appreciation of the Mass.”

Virtually all authorities agree on this, that the Mass is the central feature of Knock. Our Lady herself seems to bear this out. Most of the cures there have occurred during Mass. At Lourdes, the Blessed Sacrament is emphasized; at Knock, the Mass.

– From: “The Woman Shall Conquer” by Don Sharkey, Prow Books/Franciscan Marytown Press, Libertyville, IL, 1954

 

 
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Posted by on October 26, 2019 in Devotions

 

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ST LUKE, EVANGELIST

ST LUKE, EVANGELIST

ST LUKE, EVANGELIST – FEAST: OCTOBER 18

Luke was a physician of Antioch. He knew Greek and was a disciple of the Apostle Paul. Luke wrote the Gospel from holy tradition (word of mouth) and compiled the Acts from what he, personally, had seen. He never married and lived eighty-four years.

PRAYER:

Father,

you chose Luke the evangelist to reveal

by preaching and writing

the mystery of your love for the poor.

Unite in one heart and spirit

all who glory in your name,

and let all nations come to see your salvation.

Through our Lord…

 

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