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PRAYER OF ST JOHN FISHER FOR THE CHURCH

PRAYER OF ST JOHN FISHER FOR THE CHURCH

Good Lord, set in thy Church strong and mighty pillars,

that may suffer and endure great labours,

which also shall not fear persecution,

neither death

but always suffer with a good will

slanders, shame, and all kinds of torments,

for the glory and praise of thy Holy Name.

By this manner, good Lord,

the truth of thy Gospel

shall be preached throughout the world.

Therefore, merciful Lord,

exercise thy mercy,

show it indeed upon thy Church.

Amen.

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TODAY’S BIBLE READING (APOCALYPSE 20:1-4.11-21:2)

TODAY’S BIBLE READING (APOCALYPSE 20:1-4.11-21:2)

Last Week of the Year, Cycle II, Friday)

I, John, saw an angel come down from heaven with the key of the Abyss in his hand and an enormous chain. He overpowered the dragon, that primeval serpent which is the devil and Satan, and chained him up for a thousand years. He threw him into the Abyss and shut the entrance and sealed it over him, to make sure he would not deceive the nations again until a thousand years had passed. At the end of that time he must be released, but only for a short while.

Then I saw some thrones, and I saw those who are given the power to be judges take their seats on them. I saw the souls of all who had been beheaded for having witnessed for Jesus and for having preached God’s word, and those who refused to worship the beast or his statue and would not have the brand-mark on their foreheads or hands; they came to life, and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.

Then I saw a great white throne and the One who was sitting on it. In his presence, earth and sky vanished, leaving no trace. I saw the dead, both great and small, standing in front of his throne, while the book of judgment was opened which were the record of what they had done in their lives, by which the dead were judged.

The sea gave up all the dead who were in it; Death and Hades were emptied of the dead that were in them; and every one was judged according to the way in which he had lived. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the burning lake. The burning lake is the second death; and anybody whose name could not be found written in the book of life was thrown into the burning lake.

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; the first heaven and the first earth had disappeared now, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the holy city, and the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, as beautiful as a bride all dressed for her husband.

V. The word of the Lord. R. Thanks be to God.

 
 

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DEARLY BELOVED, LET EACH OF US FIGHT FOR EITHER THE WHITE CROWN OF VIRGINITY, OR THE RED CROWN OF MARTYRDOM

DEARLY BELOVED, LET EACH OF US FIGHT FOR EITHER THE WHITE CROWN OF VIRGINITY, OR THE RED CROWN OF MARTYRDOM

And every one that striveth for the mastery, refraineth himself from all things: and they indeed that they may receive a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible one. (1 Corinthians 9:25)

Today, dearly beloved, on one solemn day of rejoicing, we celebrate the feast of all the saints in heaven. In their communion, heaven exults; in their patronage, earth rejoices; in their triumph, holy Church is crowned with glory. Their testimony becomes more glorious with honour in proportion to the intensity of their agony. As the battle waxed fiercer, the greater was the glory which came to those who fought; the more terrible their tortures, the more illustrious the triumph of their martyrdom; the greater their torments, the greater their rewards. As our holy mother the Catholic Church – now spread far and wide throughout the whole world – has been taught by Christ Jesus her Head, not to fear shame, or the cross or death, but to become stronger and stronger, not by resisting but by enduring, so has she breathed into her children, welded by the cruel prison into a glorious band, a triumphant spirit equal to her own in its fire and in courage to carry on the conflict.

Courage

O mother Church truly holy, whose glory God deigns to illumine, whom the glorious blood of conquering martyrs adorns, whom the white robes of virgins clothe with an inviolate confession of faith, roses and lilies are not wanting to your garlands. Dearly beloved, let each one of us fight that he may gain the high dignity of one or the other of these honours, either the white crown of virginity, or the red crown of martyrdom. In the heavenly camps, both peace and war have their own garlands with which the soldiers of Christ are crowned.

The sufferings of this time are not worthy to be compared with the glory to come, that shall be revealed in us.

For the ineffable and limitless goodness of God has provided that the time of both toil and struggle shall not be prolonged unduly, nor drawn-out and without end, but brief, and as I might say, of a moment. Therefore, although in this short and difficult life there may be labours and struggles, in that life which is eternal there are crowns and rewards of merits. The struggles are soon over, the rewards for merits last forever. God in his goodness has provided, too, that after the darkness of this life they shall see an exceedingly great radiance, they shall receive blessedness far beyond the bitterness of all their torment. The Apostle bears witness of this when he says, “The sufferings of this time are not worthy to be compared with the glory to come, that shall be revealed in us.” [Romans 8:18]

– St Bede the Venerable, Priest, Sermon 18 on the Saints, from: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 
 

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ALLELUIAS FOR THE LAST WEEK OF THE LITURGICAL YEAR

ALLELUIAS FOR THE LAST WEEK OF THE LITURGICAL YEAR

The last week of the Liturgical Year is the week between The Solemnity of Christ the King of the Universe and the First Sunday of Advent.

  • Alleluia, alleluia! Stay awake and stand ready, because you do not know the hour when the Son of Man is coming. Alleluia! (Mt 24:42, 44)
  • Alleluia, alleluia! Stand erect, hold your heads high, because your liberation is near at hand. Alleluia! (Lk 21:28)
  • Alleluia, alleluia! Stay awake, praying at all times for the strength to stand with confidence before the Son of Man. Alleluia! (Lk 21:36)
  • Alleluia, alleluia! Even if you have to die, says the Lord, keep faithful, and I will give you the crown of life. Alleluia! (Apc 2:10)
 
 

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MY KINGDOM IS NOT OF THIS WORLD (Jn18:36)

MY KINGDOM IS NOT OF THIS WORLD (Jn18:36)

Jesus answered: “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would certainly strive that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now my kingdom is not from hence. (John 18:36)

“Offering the homage of her veneration, the Church, which is the kingdom of Christ on earth [in the world, not of this world] destined to extend to all parts and to embrace all men, salutes in the yearly cycle of the holy liturgy her Author and Founder as King, Lord and King of Kings.” (Pius XI, December 11th, 1925)

(See also: “The Church of Christ, the Kingdom of God on Earth, Has Been Hated and Persecuted Always”; please click here)

With His reply, Christ laid bare the vain thoughts of men. Reigning worldly rulers are apt to be jealous of those whom they consider likely to rule in their stead. 

Jesus answered: “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my followers would have fought that I might not be delivered to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” This is what the good Master wished us to know. First we had to learn how vain was the notion of this kingdom which had been current among all men, both Jews and Gentiles, and which Pilate had heard from them. As if he deserved to be condemned to death because he had aspired to an unlawful kingdom; or because reigning monarchs are apt to be jealous of those who are likely to rule in their stead, or as if, for example, there was need to beware lest his kingdom should be hostile either to the Romans or the Jews.

When the Roman governor asked Jesus, “Are you king of the Jews,” the Lord could have answered: “My kingdom is not of this world.” But Christ asked in his turn, “Do you say this of yourself, or have others told you of me?” because he wished to show from Pilate’s answer that he, Jesus, had been charged with this as a crime before Pilate by the Jews. Thus he laid bare to us the thoughts of men which he knew and which were vain. After the reply of Pilate, Jesus replied to them, to both Jews and Gentiles, more fittingly and more opportunely, “My kingdom is not of this world.”

– St Augustine, Bishop, Treatise 115 on John 18-36, from: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 
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Posted by on November 20, 2016 in Words of Wisdom

 

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THE ACT OF CONSECRATION OF THE HUMAN RACE TO THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS

THE ACT OF CONSECRATION OF THE HUMAN RACE TO THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS

 

(The Holy Father Pope Pius XI wanted the whole human race to be consecrated to Jesus, the universal King…If not being said in a Church, the word ‘altar’ should be replaced with ‘presence’.)

Most sweet Jesus, redeemer of the human race, look down upon us humbly prostrate before Your Altar. We are Yours, and Yours we wish to be; but to be more surely united to You, behold, each one of us this day freely dedicates himself to Your Most Sacred Heart. Many, indeed, have never known You, many, too, despising Your precepts have rejected You. Have mercy on them all, most merciful Jesus, and draw them to Your Sacred Heart.

Be King, O Lord, not only of the faithful who have never forsaken You, but also of the prodigal sons who have abandoned You, grant that they may quickly return to their Father’s house, before they perish of wretchedness and hunger. Be King of those whom heresy holds in error or discord keeps far away, call them back to the harbour of truth and the unity of faith, so that soon there may be but one fold and one Shepherd.
Be King of all those who even now sit in the shadow of idolatry or Islam, and do not refuse to bring them into the light of Your kingdom. Look, finally, with eyes of pity upon the children of that race, which was for so long a time Your chosen people, and let Your blood, which was once invoked upon them in vengeance, now descend upon them also in a cleansing flood of redemption and eternal life.

Grant, O Lord, to Your Church assurance of freedom and immunity from harm, unto all nations give an ordered tranquillity; bring it to pass that from pole to pole the earth may resound with one cry: Praise to the divine Heart that wrought our salvation; to it be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

 
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Posted by on November 20, 2016 in Devotions

 

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SOLEMNITY OF CHRIST THE KING, RESPONSORIAL PSALM (PSALM 121)

SOLEMNITY OF CHRIST THE KING, RESPONSORIAL PSALM (PSALM 121)

R.: I rejoiced when I heard them say: “Let us go to God’s house.”

I rejoiced when I heard them say:
“Let us go to God’s house.”
And now our feet are standing
within your gates, O Jerusalem. (R.)

Jerusalem is built as a city
strongly compact.
It is there that the tribes go up,
the tribes of the Lord. (R.)

For Israel’s law it is,
there to praise the Lord’s name.
There were set the thrones of judgement
of the house of David. (R.)

 
 

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