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THE FINEST SERMON EVER PREACHED WAS DELIVERED BY GOD

THE FINEST SERMON EVER PREACHED WAS DELIVERED BY GOD

HOLINESS THROUGH MARY

The finest sermon ever preached was delivered by God, in Person, as He sat on the slopes of a mountain over 2000 years ago: “Blessed are the poor in spirit; the kingdom of Heaven is theirs. Blessed are the patient; they shall inherit the land. Blessed are those who mourn; they shall be comforted. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for holiness; they shall have their fill.”

Christ was challenging the world. Speaking to a group of ordinary, illiterate country people, He told them that their vocation in life was to aspire after the holiness of God Himself. “You are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect… Lay up treasure for yourselves in Heaven… Make it your first care to find the Kingdom of God and His approval… Make your way in by the narrow gate.” Little wonder that St Paul, a few years later, could tell the people of Thessalonica: “What God asks of you is that you should sanctify yourselves.”

Christ lived and taught on this earth to sanctify souls. That was the reason He established His Church. He intended all men to be saints. There is not one kind of Christianity for priests, monks and nuns, and another for people living in the world. To all, St Peter addresses these words: “You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a consecrated nation, a people God means to have for Himself; it is yours to proclaim the exploits of the God Who has called you out of the darkness into His marvellous light.”

Every Christian, in virtue of the fact that he is a Christian, is bound to seek after holiness. Monks and nuns bind themselves by vows to help them in their quest, but the vows do not make the obligation: they simply reinforce and emphasise it. The destination of the Christian life is perfection for all. In every Age of the Church, there have been saints in the world as well as in the cloister. [to be continued]

– Excerpts from Holiness Through Mary by Fr Francis Ripley, copied from a pamphlet by the Universal Rosary Association. For the Association’s contact details, please click here.

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ST THOMAS BECKET – HIS MURDER IN CANTERBURY CATHEDRAL WAS WITNESSED FIRST HAND

• “‘Who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves?’ (Luke 22:27)

• ‘Through the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation the faithful are ‘consecrated to be… a royal priesthood’ (CCC 1546)

• St Thomas Becket is the Patron saint of English priests. They are blessed because of this and stand on the broad shoulders of this manly and courageous saint. His murder in Canterbury cathedral was witnessed first hand. Like St Stephen, with blood streaming down his face he prayed, ‘Into thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.’ His last words as he lay dying were, ‘For the name of Jesus and the protection of the Church I am ready to embrace death.’ We pray for our clergy that they would know a renewal of their grace of ordination and dedicate their lives in a new way to the building of the kingdom of heaven.

• St Thomas Becket, pray for us. St Thomas Becket, pray for our priests and give them strength to live out their holy vocation.

• Our Father…, Ten Hail Mary…, Glory be…

• Today my prayer is for…”
– From the Resource for the Year of Faith 2012 by Alive Publishing. To view and order their publications, please visit http://www.alivepublishing.co.uk (external link).

 
 

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OUR MISSION AS MEMBERS OF HIS ROYAL PRIESTHOOD – WHY IT IS GOOD TO PRAY THE DIVINE MERCY CHAPLET FOR THE WHOLE WORLD

“We who belong to Christ can do this work of applying the effects of His eternal redemption to the needs of the world, and we are expected by Him to undertake this work as members of His Body. These are great truths which we must believe absolutely (without doubt or reservation) if we are to be adequately motivated to share zealously in this great work of our Merciful Lord. Indeed, this is a vital part of our mission as members of His royal priesthood: to share in the priestly ministry of Christ by offering up His sacrifice, in intercessory prayer, to obtain God’s mercy for ourselves and the whole world. PRAYING THE DIVINE MERCY CHAPLET As we say in the Divine Mercy Chaplet: ‘Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins, and those of the whole world” (see 1 John 2:2).

The devout praying of the Chaplet is, therefore, an important work of the priestly People of God. As we read in the Letter to the Hebrews (10:14) ‘…by one offering He has made perfect forever (that is, consecrated – Fr. A. Van Hoye: Structure and Message of the Epistle to the Hebrews, p. 69), ‘those who are being sanctified.’ This means that Christ communicated the priesthood to us who belong to Him. Priests are supposed to ‘offer… sacrifices for sins’ (Hebrews 5:1). In that same letter, we Christians are encouraged: ‘Therefore let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, acknowledging His name’ (Hebrews 13:15). So, as we pray the Chaplet – ‘For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world’ – we are doing just that: offering our ‘sacrifice of praise’ to the Lord for His all-encompassing, saving work, and ‘offering sacrifices for our sins’. In other words, when we are prayerfully asking the Father, on the basis of the sorrowful Passion of His Son, for mercy upon the whole world, we are, in effect, prayerfully extending the Church’s ancient cry from the Mass, ‘Kyrie Eleison’ – ‘Lord, have mercy!’ – and applying it to the whole universe!”
– From: ‘Praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet for the Sick and Dying’, Marians of the Immaculate Conception, Imprimi potest: Very Rev. Walter M. Dziordz

÷ HOW TO PRAY THE CHAPLET OF THE DIVINE MERCY ÷

Use the Rosary beads and begin with:

Our Father…, Hail Mary…, The Apostles’ Creed.

On the large bead before each decade, say:

“Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.”

On the ten small beads of each decade, say:

“For the sake of His sorrowful Passion,
have mercy on us and on the whole world.”

Conclude with:

“Holy God, Holy Might One, Holy Immortal One,
have mercy on us and on the whole world.” (repeat 3 times).

 

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