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HOW THE BEAUTY OF A CHRISTIAN SOUL ENRAPTURES HIM WHO BECAME ITS SPOUSE BY BAPTISM

HOW THE BEAUTY OF A CHRISTIAN SOUL ENRAPTURES HIM WHO BECAME ITS SPOUSE BY BAPTISM

RAISE YOUR EYES TO THE REGIONS OF INFINITE LOVE: THERE YOU WILL FIND THE SECRET OF YOUR TEARS

Alas! we always forget that the object of our love is beloved also by another, and that God is called in the Holy Scriptures a jealous God. In our affections we forget Him Who loves more than all creatures together, and Who, lest they should find any reason to complain of Him, has willed to die for them, eternal as He was by His nature. Raise your eyes to the regions of infinite love, there you will find the secret of your tears. You will see wrapped in the embrace of God the soul which divided itself so equally between God and you, that not even the attractions of Heaven would have torn it from you, if it had not received an indisputable order. You will see the reason of this command, which seems so cruel, and understand how the beauty of a Christian soul enraptures Him Who became its Spouse by baptism.

DEATH IS THE PORTAL OF LIFE

Unhappy that we are, we do not believe these divine mysteries! We call birth and life by the name of death; we make a tomb of the portal of heaven, we weep there, like men who have no hope?

– Lacordaire, from Laverty & Sons (eds), Leeds, 1905

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HOLD ON TO THE GOOD AND STAY IN THE FOOTPRINTS OF YOUR PIOUS ANCESTORS – ST NICHOLAS OF FLUE

HOLD ON TO THE GOOD AND STAY IN THE FOOTPRINTS OF YOUR PIOUS ANCESTORS – ST NICHOLAS OF FLUE

“[On]…21st March one of the saints celebrated by the Church is St Nicholas of Flue, known also as Brother Klaus. He was born in 1417 in the Swiss canton of Unterwalden. At the age of 21 St Nicholas entered the army and took part in the Battle of Ragaz, distinguishing himself as a soldier. He became a member of the lay organisation called the Friends of God. Members sought closeness to Jesus through a disciplined life, especially meditation on His Passion.

Closeness to Jesus

At the age of 30 St Nicholas married Dorothy Wissling, and during twenty years of happy marriage they had ten children. St Nicholas left the army at the age of 37, having always carried his rosary beads with him wherever he travelled. After leaving the army he became a councillor and a judge for his canton.

His Divine Calling

At the age of 50 St Nicholas sensed the call of God to lead a more contemplative life. His wife and children believed that he had this divine calling and did not oppose him. St Nicholas left his family and spent the next 20 years in a remote cottage in Ranft. He prayed most of the night, but in the afternoon was happy to receive visitors.

He prayed most of the night

Although unable to read or write, St Nicholas had the gift of spiritual counsel and natural good judgement. Even top leaders sought his direction on spiritual, personal or political matters. In 1481 St Nicholas played a major role in solidifying the unity of Switzerland through his advice given to those involved in this endeavour. St Nicholas died on 21st March 1487 in Ranft after a short illness. He was beatified in 1669 and canonised by Pope Pius XII in 1947. He is the Patron Saint of Switzerland and of the Swiss Guards who protect the Pope.

A document from that time preserved St Nicholas’ fundamental wisdom:

Always put God first… do not mix in the affairs of others or ally yourself with a powerful stranger. Guard against discord and self-interest… do not let grow among you self-interest, jealousy, hatred, envy and factions, or these will work against you… don’t let innovations and roguery seduce you. Hold on to the good and stay on the road in the footprints of your pious ancestors. If you do that, neither storm nor tempest can harm you and you will overcome much evil.”

– From: Spiritual Thought from Fr. Chris 3/2017

 

 

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THOU HAST PREPARED THY HOLY TABLE IN THE SIGHT OF MY SPIRITUAL ENEMIES

THOU HAST PREPARED THY HOLY TABLE IN THE SIGHT OF MY SPIRITUAL ENEMIES

ACT OF HOPE BEFORE HOLY COMMUNION

Jesus, my Lord and my God, Whom I behold with eyes of faith in the Sacrament of the Altar, what may I not hope from thee! Thou art the Almighty who canst ever succour us; thou art our all-loving and merciful God Who wilt gladly help us, Whose delight is to dispense grace and blessing.

Thou knockest at the door of our hearts yearning to enter and lavish upon us the fulness of thy grace. What canst thou withhold, O my loving Redeemer, when thou givest me thyself with all that thou art and all that thou hast? Thou art my refuge, my hope, my salvation, my life, my beatitude!

Thou hast promised refreshment to all who are weary and heavy burdened; thou hast the words of eternal life, and thou wilt fulfil these words in me. Thou hast prepared this holy table against all that afflicts me, against all the enemies of my salvation; I hope, therefore, to be strengthened at thy table for the struggle against the world, the flesh, and the devil.

Thou hast given me this food as the pledge of immortality; through it I hope for eternal life. Bless, O Lord, all that hope in thee. Increase my hope and let it not be in vain.

– St Anthony’s Treasury, 1916

 

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HOW CAN WE FOLLOW JESUS MUCH BETTER THAN BEFORE?

HOW CAN WE FOLLOW JESUS MUCH BETTER THAN BEFORE?

TO FOLLOW JESUS IS MEANS TO IMITATE HIM

In order to be able the better to imitate Jesus Christ, we must look upon Him continually: He is the model, of whom the artisan, who wishes to fashion his soul to His likeness, must not lose sight.

We must meditate on His example, for in this pious meditation the soul will find the necessary sustenance, and the only true nourishment for its piety.

We must remove all obstacles which hinder this imitation, such as:

Sins,

Bad habits,

Evil inclinations.

We must employ the sacraments, and, finally, take courage afresh each day and advance joyfully.

– Laverty & Sons (eds), 1905

 
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Posted by on March 26, 2017 in Words of Wisdom

 

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EVENING PRAYERS (CHRISTIAN – CATHOLIC)

EVENING PRAYERS (CHRISTIAN – CATHOLIC)

+ In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

[50 days Indulgence; 100 days if made with holy water.]

Place yourself in the presence of God, and humbly adore Him.

Blessed be the holy and undivided Trinity, now and forever. Amen.

I adore thee, O my Saviour Jesus Christ, and I give thee thanks for having, by thy sufferings and Death upon the Cross, redeemed the world. O thou, Who didst suffer so much for love of me, grant me mercy!

O my God, I adore thee with the most profound respect, and I love thee with all my heart, because thou hast created me, and done unto me all manner of good, and because thou art in thyself infinitely good and infinitely amiable. I adore and love thy infinite perfections, and beg of thee the grace to participate in them.

I am thine, O my God! because thou hast made me what I am. Grant that I may be wholly thine, and that having nothing in view but to love thee, I may do nothing that would be capable, not only of separating me eternally from thee, but of depriving me, even for the least moment, of thy holy love.

I cheerfully accept all the pain and misery which thou wouldst have me suffer in this life, because such is thy good pleasure, and because this cheerful acceptance will procure for me an eternal happiness; and as I would fain please thee in all my conduct, grant, O my God, that I may love all thou lovest, and hate all that displeases thee. It is thy desire, O good Jesus, that I love thee. Since, then, to merit thy holy love, it is necessary to lead a life conformable to that which thou didst lead while here on earth, grant me grace to enter into the practices of thy holy life, and to imitate thee in thy sufferings, so that I may be always inseparably united to thee.

Thank God for His graces and benefits

I thank thee, O my God, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, for all the graces and blessings which thou hast been pleased to bestow upon me; for having given me life, for having preserved it till now; for having made me a Christian, and delivered me from my sins; and for all the special graces which, in thy bounty, thou hast this day conferred upon me.

Beg of God the graces we shall need during this night

I beg of thee, O my God, the continuation of thy bounties and thy graces to me, and above all that of dying happily; that is, to die in loving thee. I will then endeavour to prepare myself that I may not die unprovidedly, should it be thy will to take me this night out of this world; and as I know that sin infinitely displeases thee, and that I am filled therewith, I will endeavour from this moment to be cleansed therefrom, and offend thee no more. Give me, then, O my God, the light necessary to know my sins, and a true contrition that I may hate and never more commit them.

[Here examine your conscience.]

Beg pardon of God.

O my God, I most humbly beg pardon for all the sins which I have committed against thy Divine Majesty; my heart is overwhelmed with sorrow for them, and the cause of my sorrow is the consideration of thy goodness, the horror thou hast for my faults, the punishment which they deserve, and the state in which I am of not being able to perform adequate penance for them. Ah! my God, how have I been so wretched as to relapse so often into sin, after having always promised thee to change my life! I am covered with confusion at appearing before thee after so many relapses and infidelities; and were I not firmly convinced of the infinite greatness of thy mercy, I would hardly dare to hope for pardon for them.

I present myself then before thee, attracted by thy goodness, and wholly covered with the Precious Blood of Jesus, my Saviour, beseeching thee to acknowledge me as His servant, and to preserve me in thy holy grace. I assure thee that, notwithstanding all my evil inclinations and the disorderly affections of my heart, it is my desire to be wholly thine, to offend thee no more, and to make all the satisfaction I possibly can for my sins!

Beg of God to keep us this night in His holy love.

Preserve me, O my God while I wake, watch over me when I sleep, so that, having watched with Jesus Christ, I may repose in peace with thee!

Preserve me, O my God! from all sin during this night; enlighten my darkness by thy Divine Light, and in thy goodness keep me from all the snares which the devil, my enemy, might lay for me.

O my God! who hast prepared invisible treasures for those who love thee, diffuse through my heart the fire of thy holy love, so that loving thee in all things and above all things, I may obtain what thou hast promised me, which surpasses all that I could desire. This is what I ask of thee through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Abandon yourself entirely to God, and offer Him the repose you are about to take.

O my God, I offer myself wholly to thee, do with me what thou pleasest; my life is in thy power. If thou wilt take it from me, I offer it to thee; if thou leavest it with me I am satisfied: I abandon myself entirely to thy holy will.

I offer thee, O my God, the sleep I am going to take in honour of thy eternal rest, and in union with that which Jesus my Saviour took while on earth. Permit not, I beseech thee, that I should take this repose through a movement of pleasure or sensuality; but grant that it be in submission to thy holy will, and only through necessity, so that, having regained new strength, I may serve thee to-morrow with more fervour. I bless thee, O my God! for having put this interruption to my malice, which is so great while I am awake. I accept this repose as the image of thy peace, the re-establishment of my strength, the cessation of my sins, the warning of my death, and the figure of that repose which is enjoyed in heaven.

Pater (Our Father), Ave (Hail Mary), Credo (Apostles’ Creed), Hail Holy Queen, Prayer to St Joseph.

 

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I FIRMLY BELIEVE WITH MY HEART AND CONFESS WITH MY LIPS…

I FIRMLY BELIEVE WITH MY HEART AND CONFESS WITH MY LIPS…

PRAYERS BEFORE HOLY COMMUNION

ACT OF FAITH

I firmly believe with my heart and confess with my lips that thou, my loving Jesus, equal to the Father in power and majesty, art really and truly present in the Holy Sacrament of the Altar, and, with thy Divinity and thy Humanity, abidest for me in this sanctuary.

Thou who didst weep as an infant in the crib, Who wast offered a Victim for me on the Cross. Who sittest as my intercessor at the right hand of the Father, Who wilt come as my Judge in the clouds of heaven – dwellest a hidden God in the narrow limits of the tabernacle and concealest under the humble form of bread.

Thy Flesh and thy Blood, thy Body and thy Soul, thy Divinity and thy glorified Humanity, thy splendour and thy boundless Majesty, I believe this on the authority of thy word as firmly as if I saw it with my eyes. Animated by this faith, I cast myself before thee, and adore thee as my Creator, my Redeemer, my greatest Good. In this faith will I live and die; quicken and increase this virtue in me.

 

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LENTEN CHALLENGE: MAKING ALL ONE’S CONVERSATIONS HOLY

LENTEN CHALLENGE: MAKING ALL ONE’S CONVERSATIONS HOLY

“ANY TIME WE CATCH OURSELVES AGREEING TO SOMETHING WHICH IS CONTRARY TO OUR CONVICTIONS, WE ARE NOT TALKING CHRIST’S LANGUAGE”

HOW TO HAVE CHRISTIAN CONVERSATION

“‘If anyone speaks, let it be as with words of God.’ In this admonition St Peter in his first Epistle sets us a standard, although a perfectly logical one. If we are Christians, Peter is saying, then we ought to talk like Christians. The words that we speak should be words that would not be out of place on the lips of Christ Himself.

NOT CONFINED TO RELIGIOUS TOPICS

This does not mean that all our conversation should be confined to religious topics. The Gospels record for us a very small percentage of our Lord’s conversations. It is only His words of major importance and of universal application that are related by the Evangelists.

JESUS IS FULLY HUMAN

However, Jesus is fully human, and we can be sure that He took part in ordinary, every day human conversation. With His disciples and other friends He undoubtedly discussed local politics, the weather and the happenings around Him – the comic, tragic or just plain interesting incidents which make up an ordinary day.

THE THREE NOTABLE CHARACTERISTICS OF A CHRISTLIKE CONVERSATION

No, we do not have to be perpetually preaching in order to speak ‘with words of God.’ Even in the most casual chat there is a Christlike way of speaking. There are three notable qualities which characterise such conversation. These qualities are charity, humility and sincerity.

WHAT NOT TO MAKE TOPICS OF CONVERSATION

CHARITY bars from our conversation all that might give unnecessary pain to another. Sarcasm, ridicule, fault-finding, angry or resentful remarks – none of these, surely, would reflect Christ to our listeners. Equally foreign to the lips of Christ would be every type of unkind gossip, every type of tale-bearing, slander or detraction.

ONE-UPMANSHIP AND OTHER CONVERSATION HABITS

Perhaps a little less obvious than the need for charity is the need for HUMILITY in our conversation. There is no one (God excepted, let us hope) whom we love more than ourselves. Consequently it is a real struggle to keep self to a minimum in our talk.

Most of us are too sophisticated to indulge in outright bragging. Just listen to us, though, as we manage to mention (so very offhandedly!) some small triumph of ours or a compliment someone has paid us or an honour that has been accorded us.

Then there is the matter of one-upmanship, as it is called. This consists of topping the other person’s experiences. If someone mentions having had a serious operation, we describe our own much more serious one. If another person speaks of his trip to Mexico, we tell about our trip to Europe. If the speaker recalls an unusual bridge hand he held last night, we can remember a still more freakish hand which we held a week ago.

THE VERY TRICKIEST PART

SINCERITY is the third quality which characterises the conversation of a Christian. Insincerity is a much more difficult defect to spot in ourselves than is either uncharitableness or self-centredness. The reason is that usually we are not trying deliberately to deceive other persons. We first of all deceive ourselves and others only incidentally.

INCIDENTAL DECEPTIONS

All too often in conversation we say what we think we ought to say and try to convince ourselves that we really mean it. We stifle the small voice inside us which whispers, ‘You’re talking hogwash and you know it. You don’t really believe what you’re saying.’

AGREEING FOR POLITENESS’ SAKE

Sincerity does not demand that we stud our conversation with disagreeable truths or opposing opinions which may give offence without accomplishing any proportionate good. Sometimes it is more Christian to be silent. However, any time we catch ourselves saying or agreeing to something which is contrary to our own convictions, we are compromising our integrity. And we are not talking Christ’s language.

ARE WE UP TO THE CHALLENGE?

We may be tempted to feel that Christlike conversation is beyond us. There is too much to guard against. We simply cannot be that alert all the time.

True, we probably never will achieve absolute perfection. Nevertheless, with a little effort we certainly can speak ‘with words of God’ much more consistently than we do. We shall find it a challenging experience to try to go through just one day (for a starter) with our conversation keyed to the question, ‘What would Jesus probably say under these circumstances?’

It may tend to curtail our conversation somewhat. But no matter. Most of us talk too much anyway.”
– Fr Leo J. Trese

 

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