Saturday after the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost.—God Our Teacher.
PRAYER BEFORE MEDITATION.
My God, I firmly believe that Thou art here present. I acknowledge that on account of my many sins I am utterly unworthy to appear before Thy sacred countenance. Yet, confiding in Thy infinite goodness and mercy, I venture to address Thee, to call upon Thy holy name, and meditate upon Thy commandments, in order that I may acquire a better knowledge of Thy holy will, and accomplish it with more fidelity. Wherefore enlighten my understanding that I may perceive what I ought to do or leave undone for the promotion of Thy glory and my own salvation; at the same time excite my will, that I may repent with my whole heart of my past sins, and resolve for the future to do all that Thou requirest of me. Grant me above all to know Jesus, my divine Teacher and Guide, more clearly, that I may love Him more dearly, and consequently labor, struggle and suffer with greater generosity and self-sacrifice in imitation of His example. Holy Mary, Mother of God and my Mother, show Jesus to me now, and let me study thy divine Son to the salvation of my soul. Holy Guardian Angel, keep far from me all distracting thoughts; my patron saint, come to my assistance. Amen.
Saturday after the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost.—God Our Teacher.
You call me Master and Lord; and you say well, for so I am. (John xiii, 13.)
CONSIDER FIRSTLY that God Himself wishes to be your chiefest Master, to instruct and to teach you by means of prayer. When He speaks to you through the mouths of others, He gives you lessons as a public teacher, but when He speaks to you in prayer, He is your own special and private Teacher. He intends to teach you in this school not high or subtle things, but those that are useful. I teach thee profitable things (Isaias xlviii, 17), He says by means of His prophet, things ordained for the extirpation of sins, for the acquisition of virtue and of a closer union with God.
APPLICATION. Whether your prayer is profitable or not, is shown not by the lights, nor the tears therein, but by its leading to your living a more mortified, strong, and fervent life. When you reap not any profit in your manner of life from prayer, you may rightly suspect it, for it is a school intended to lead to practice.
AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. Let my prayer come in before Thee: incline Thy ear to my petition. (Ps. lxxxvii, 3.)
CONSIDER SECONDLY that this Master does not only teach you by word, but also by His example: I myself that spoke behold I am here. (Isa. lii, 6.) You have not to weary yourself in searching far and wide for a workable rule for your actions. It is enough for you that you look at Jesus Christ, and see how He acted in whatever matter you have in hand. All other rules are apt to lead astray. The quickest and the surest one is to look at the actions of your divine Master: And thine eyes shall see thy teacher. (Isa. xxx, 20.)
APPLICATION. Nothing can ever happen for which you have not an example at once ready for you in Him. Reflect on the life of Christ, and thus regulate your actions in any proof which God may put you to, either by means of prosperity, or by adversity, or by means of the devil. How have you tried thus far to profit by His divine example?
AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. Behold, O God our protector, and look upon the face of thy Christ. (Ps. lxxxiii. 10.)
CONSIDER THIRDLY that this Divine Master does not only give you lessons profitable to you in the school of prayer, but also enables you to understand them and gives you the strength to put them in practice. Behold then with what zest you should go to so profitable a school, the school of prayer. How many simple folk by the purity of their lives have come to understand in prayer things unknown to the wise! How many souls in the time of prayer have been strengthened to embrace the virtues of patience, of humility, of charity, which before had seemed to them impossible to hope to attain!
APPLICATION. How far do you appreciate and value such a Master, Who in the act of giving you His instruction gives you also the capacity and the strength to avail yourself of it? By his knowledge shall this my just servant justify many. (Isa. liii, II.)
AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. I have lifted up my eyes to the mountains: from whence help shall come to me. My help is from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. (Ps. cxx, 1-2.)
PRAYER AFTER MEDITATION.
My God, I give Thee heartfelt thanks for all the graces and all the light Thou hast conferred on me during this meditation. Pardon me all the negligence and the distractions of which I have been guilty, and give me strength to carry out the resolutions that I have made. Fortify me, that from henceforth I may diligently practise this virtue . . . avoid this fault . . . perform this action . . . to Thy honor. Help me to do this, sweet Virgin Mary; and if I ever forget my good resolutions, I entreat my Angel Guardian to recall them to my memory. Amen.
Of a Monastic life.
O Lord, vouchsafe to make us perfect Christians, by an interior renouncing of all things, and even of ourselves; by a complete conversion; by an entire mortification of our flesh, of our senses, of our passions, and of our own will. Make us persevere with an inviolable fidelity to the last moment, that by the signal grace of final perseverance a happy death may crown a happy life. Amen.–Thomas à Kempis–Imitation of Christ Bk I, Ch XVII prayer.
August Devotion: The Most Pure Heart of Mary
Virtues to practice: The sanctification of our actions, diligence, edification, fidelity in little things
O Heart of Mary, Mother of God, and our Mother; Heart most worthy of love, in which the adorable Trinity is ever well pleased, worthy of the veneration and love of all the angels and of all men; Heart most like to the Heart of Jesus, of which thou art the perfect image; Heart full of goodness, ever compassionate toward our miseries; deign to melt our icy hearts and grant that they may be wholly changed into the likeness of the Heart of Jesus, our divine Saviour. Pour into them the love of thy virtues, and kindle in them that divine fire with which thou thyself dost ever burn. In thee let Holy Church find a safe shelter; protect her and be her dearest refuge, her tower of strength, impregnable against every assault of her enemies. Be thou the way which leads to Jesus, and the channel, through which we receive all graces needful for our salvation. Be our refuge in time of trouble, our solace in the midst of trial, our strength against temptation, our haven in persecution, our present help in every danger, and especially at the hour of death, when all hell shall let loose against us its legions to snatch away our souls, at that dread moment, that hour so full of fear, whereon our eternity depends. Ah, then most tender virgin, make us to feel the sweetness of thy motherly heart, and the might of thy intercession with Jesus, and open to us a safe refuge in that very fountain of mercy whence we may come to praise Him with thee in paradise, world without end. Amen.
An indulgence of 7 years once on any day of the month; A plenary indulgence on the usual conditions, if this act of devotion is repeated daily for entire month (Apostolic Brief Dec. 21, 1901)
Copyright © 2013 – 2014. Holy Cross Publications. All rights reserved.