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ST TERESA OF AVILA, VIRGIN

ST TERESA OF AVILA, VIRGIN

ST TERESA OF AVILA, VIRGIN – MEMORIAL: OCTOBER 15

Teresa was born of pious and noble parents at Avila, in Spain. While she was still a very little girl, she was so enkindled with a desire for martyrdom that, running away from home, she tried to go to Africa. She was brought back to her home. After her mother’s death, she committed herself wholly to the patronage of the Blessed Virgin.

SHE EMBRACED THE RULE OF THE NUNS OF OUR LADY OF MOUNT CARMEL

When she was twenty years old, she embraced the rule of the nuns of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Solicitous for the salvation of souls, she built many monasteries and proposed that the original rule of the Carmelite foundation be observed by its women and men. She continually offered to God the voluntary sufferings of her own body on behalf of infidels and heretics and, burning with divine love, she took a most difficult vow of always doing that which she considered the most perfect.

SHE WROTE MANY BOOKS OF HEAVENLY WISDOM 

She merited that her bosom should be pierced with a fiery dart by an angel. She wrote many books of heavenly wisdom and taught much by word and example, having this often on her lips: “Lord, either to suffer or to die.” Renowned for virtue, the gift of prophecy and other charismatic gifts, she gave back her most pure soul to God at Alba, in the year 1582, in the sixty-seventh year of her age, on the Ides of October.

PRAYER:

Graciously hear us, O God our Saviour, that as we rejoice on the feast-day of blessed Teresa, your Virgin, we may be so nourished by the food of her heavenly teaching as to learn how to serve you. Through our Lord…

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

 

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THE FIFTEEN PRAYERS OF ST BRIDGET

THE SECRET OF HAPPINESS: THE FIFTEEN PRAYERS ON OUR LORD’S PASSION REVEALED TO ST BRIDGET OF SWEDEN

“I have tasted the bitterness of life, pain, sickness, poverty and desolation have overwhelmed me. Every night I recited these prayers with love, and my life has been miraculously transformed and God, ever faithful, has inundated my soul with joy, well-being, richness and consolation. What Jesus has done for me, a miserable sinner, He will do for you, my beloved brethren. Recite these prayers every day.”

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 amongst men, even assuming human nature during the course of time for love of men: recall all the suffering that thou hast endured from the first moment 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 death.”
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 separate 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 – all this in the flower of thy youth and during the solemn Paschal season.
Remember that thou wast despoiled of thy garments and clothed with garments of derision; that thy face and eyes were veiled, that thou wast buffeted, crowned with thorns, a reed placed in thy hands, that thou wast fastened to a column and 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 that before I die, I may make with true contrition, a sincere and entire confession, make worthy satisfaction and be granted 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.
Through these torments and insulting words, I beg of thee, O my Saviour, to deliver me from all enemies, both visible and invisible, and under thy protection, may I attain 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 which thou didst suffer when the people 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, and dislocated thy bones by pulling them on all sides – I beg of thee, O Jesus, by the memory of this most holy and most loving suffering of the Cross, to grant me the grace to fear thee and love thee. Amen.

FOURTH PRAYER:

OUR FATHER, HAIL MARY

O Jesus! Heavenly physician, raised aloft on the Cross in order that through thy Wounds ours may be healed: 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, 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 splendour, 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 this 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! King most loving and most desirable, remember the grief which thou didst suffer, when naked and like a common criminal, thou wast raised and fastened to 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 St John: “Behold thy Mother!”
I beg of thee, O my Saviour, by the sword of sorrow which pierced the soul of thy holy Mother, to have compassion on me in all my afflictions 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 Saviour, 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 ardour of worldly desires. Amen.

EIGHTH PRAYER:

OUR FATHER, HAIL MARY

O Jesus! sweetness of hearts, delight of the spirit, by the bitterness of the gall and vinegar 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 it may serve us as a remedy of consolation for our souls. Amen.

NINTH PRAYER:

OUR FATHER, HAIL MARY

O Jesus! Royal virtue, joy of the mind, recall the pain that thou didst endure when, plunged in the ocean of bitterness at the approach of death, insulted, outraged by the people, thou didst cry out in a loud voice that thou wast abandoned by the Father, saying: “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
Through this anguish, I beg of thee, O my Saviour, 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 wast 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 depths of thy being, to draw me, a miserable sinner, overwhelmed by my offences, away from sin and to hide me from thy face justly irritated against me. Hide me in thy wounds, until thy anger and 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 wast afflicted 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 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. May thy love increase in my heart each day, until I see thee in eternity. Thou who art the treasure of every real good and every joy, which I beg thee to grant me, O Sweetest Jesus, in heaven. Amen.

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, wast entirely exhausted, thou didst bow thy head, saying: “All 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, Splendour 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 when 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 thee, O King of Saints, comfort me and give me help 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 Vine! Remember the outpouring of Blood which thou didst so generously shed. From thy side, pierced with a lance by a soldier, blood and water issued forth, and finally, like a bundle of myrrh, 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 pierce my heart, so that my tears of Penitence and love may be my bread night and day. May I be converted entirely to thee, may my heart be thy perpetual resting place, may my conversion 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. Amen.

THE MAGNIFICENT PROMISES FOR RECITING THE FIFTEEN PRAYERS:

As St Bridget has been desirous for a long time to know the number of blows Our Lord received during His Passion, He once appeared to her and said, “I received 5480 blows on my Body. If you wish to honour them in some way, say 15 Our Fathers and 15 Hail Marys with the following Prayers. When the year is up, you will have honoured each one of my wounds.”
These are the promises to anyone who recites these Prayers for a whole year:
1. I will deliver fifteen souls of his lineage from Purgatory.
2. Fifteen souls of his lineage will be confirmed and preserved in grace.
3. Fifteen sinners of his lineage will be converted.
4. Whoever recites these Prayers will obtain the first degree of perfection.
5. Fifteen days before his death I will give him my Precious Body in order that he may escape eternal starvation; I will give him my Precious Blood to drink lest he thirst eternally.
6. Fifteen days before his death he will conceive a deep contrition for his sins and perfect knowledge of them.
7. I will place before him my Victorious Cross for his help and defence against the attacks of his enemies.
8. Before his death I will come with my dearest and beloved Mother.
9. I will graciously receive his soul, and will lead it into eternal joy.
10. And having lead it there, I will give him a special draught from the fountain of my Deity.
11. Let it be known that whoever may have been living in a state of mortal sin for thirty years, but who will recite devoutly, or have the intention to recite these prayers, the Lord will forgive him his sins.
12. I will defend him against evil temptations.
13. I will preserve and guard his five senses.
14. I will preserve him from a sudden death.
15. His soul will be delivered from eternal death.
16. He will obtain all he asks from God and the Blessed Virgin.
17. If he has lived all his life doing his own will and he is to die the next day, his life will be prolonged.
18. Every time one recites these Prayers, he will gain 100 days indulgences.
19. He will be assured of being joined to the supreme Choir of Angels.
20. Whoever teaches these Prayers to another, will have continual joy and merit which will last throughout eternity.
21. That where these Prayers are being said or may be said in the future, God will be present there with his grace.

– Must one recite the Prayers every day without interruption to obtain the privileges?
– One should miss saying them as few times as possible, but if for a serious reason one is obliged to miss them, one doesn’t lose the privileges attached to them, as long as one recites 5480 Prayers during the year. One must say them with devotion and concentrate on the words one pronounces.

These Prayers can serve as the Way of the Cross.

600 YEARS ST BRIDGET OF SWEDEN:

On the occasion of the 600th anniversary of Brigitta Birgersdotter (Bridget in English) Lutheran bishops from the Swedish State Church met to pray together with the Holy Father in the Church of St Peter in Rome. The king and queen of Sweden also took part in this prayer meeting. Pope Bonifaz IX had Brigitta Birgersdotter canonised in the year 1391. She was born in 1303.

 

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