Wednesday after the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost.—Citizens of Heaven.
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.
Wednesday after the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost.—Citizens of Heaven.
I shall go and prepare a place for you … that where I am you also may be. (John xiv, 3.)
CONSIDER FIRSTLY that as the Apostle tells us (Heb. xiii, 14) this wretched earth is not our abiding city. Our city is heaven. How much then are you not bound to thank God, for having called you to so blessed a destiny! You must in spirit forget your earthly country, so that you may not recognise any country as your own except heaven: The city of perfect beauty! St. Francis of Assisi rejoiced greatly as he renounced all right to his heritage in the presence of his bishop, because thus despoiled he could now recognise no one as his father except only his heavenly Father.
APPLICATION. Do you likewise rejoice, that the true followers of Christ have no other country than heaven to recognise as their own.
AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. If I ascend into heaven, thou art there. (Ps. cxxxviii, 8.)
CONSIDER SECONDLY that you have therefore to live in this world as a stranger does in a city, where he has no abiding home. He pays little attention to its affairs nor does he in any way attach himself to it. He regards it as a place that nowise concerns him. So have you to act as long as you live on this earth. This is not your city; you are here as a stranger.
APPLICATION. Yet do you not strive much to fix your a bode here below? You interest yourself as much in the affairs of your relatives, of your house and of your country as if you were never to leave them. Oh how much out of all due order is this! How prejudicial and detrimental to your true profit!
AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. Woe to me that my sojourn is prolonged. (Ps. cxix, 5.)
CONSIDER THIRDLY that you are not only a stranger on this earth, but a pilgrim: We seek one (a city) that is to come. A pilgrim, who passes many places on his way, does not trouble to take with him more than is necessary for his daily support. He goes forward with haste, unencumbered, and seeks the most direct way to the desired destination.
APPLICATION. This too is how it behoves you to conduct yourself in the pilgrimage of this life, to remain here in body indeed, but in your soul to soar up to heaven, just as the pilgrim himself is in the city through which he passes, whilst his spirit is in the place he longs for. But how differently do you proceed! You think as little of heaven as if it were not your true country at all.
AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. I rejoiced at the things that were said to me: we shall go into the house of the Lord. (Ps. cxxi, I.)
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 the Examples of the holy Fathers.
IV. They were strangers to the world, but near and familiar friends to God.
They seemed to themselves as nothing, and were despised by this world; but in the eyes of God they were very valuable and beloved.
They stood in true humility, they lived in simple obedience, they walked in charity and patience; and therefore they daily advanced in spirit, and obtained great favour with God.
They were given as an example for all religious, and ought more to excite us to make good progress than the number of the lukewarm to grow slack.–Thomas à Kempis–Imitation of Christ Bk I, Ch XVIII pt IV.
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.