Monday after the Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost.—Eternity.

Monday after the Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost.—Eternity.

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.

Monday after the Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost.—Eternity.

These shall go into everlasting punishment, but the just into life everlasting. (Matt. xxv, 46.)

CONSIDER FIRSTLY that the house you here inhabit is not your real home, but only a lodging which gives you shelter for a short time. Nor is your real resting-place the sepulchre, from which, indeed, you will not issue except at the universal destruction of the world, then to find all, that you once so admired and made so much of, reduced to ashes. Man, says Ecclesiastes, shall go into the house of his eternity. (Eccles. xii, 5.) For you shall not go into the sepulchre nor dwell there; only your already decaying body will be taken there. Your real eternal house to which you will go, will be either heaven or hell, but with what a difference!

APPLICATION. Can you now say which will be yours? May it please God that you may not have reason to answer me, Hell is my house. (Job xvii, 13.)

AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. Thy mercy will follow me all the days of my life, and that I may dwell in the house of the Lord unto length of days. (Ps. xxii, 6.)

CONSIDER SECONDLY that it is for you now to choose that which you desire. Behold I set before you the way of life and the way of death. (Jer. xxi, 8.) Will you be so foolish as to choose rather to lose your soul than to save it? Before, however, making so fatal a choice, consider seriously on the one hand what it means to be surrounded in hell by all that fire for all eternity, so that there, after you have passed thousands and millions of years, your sufferings will only be beginning. You who fear so much and tremble at the slight and the brief pains of this life, are you not dismayed at the inconceivable torments of eternity? On the other hand, lift up your eyes to heaven to see the eternal peace and perpetual joy that each one of the blessed souls enjoys in that abode of happiness. Everlasting joy shall be upon their heads (Isa. xxxv, ro.)

APPLICATION. Think well about this, and as it were in the very sight of such different dwelling-places, choose which pleases you most whilst still you may.

AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. One thing I have asked of the Lord, this will I seek after, that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life. (Ps. xxvi, 4.)

CONSIDER THIRDLY how many there are, who labour and struggle more to deserve hell, than you are obliged to labour and to suffer in order to gain heaven. What folly then is not yours if, when choosing between two houses of eternity that differ as much as do heaven and hell, you do not endeavour to secure for yourself the former with less labour than others will use to get the latter.

APPLICATION. Ponder well, for example, upon the difference there is between the trouble that many persons endure in order to be revenged, or in order to give vent to their evil passions, and that which you have to bear to lead a fervent life, and you will perceive how far less is that of yours. If the constant observance of God’s commandments and the laws of the Church seems hard or painful to you, reflect on the eternal sufferings, from which it is sure to deliver you, and the eternal blessings that you will gain by this subjection to the cross of Christ,

AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. Decline from evil and do good, and dwell for ever and ever. (Ps. xxvi, 27.)

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.

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Of the Love of Solitude and Silence.

Grant us, O Lord, the grace to mortify in ourselves the curiosity and love of sensible pleasures, which induce us to seek in the world that peace, tranquillity, consolation, and delight, which we can discover in Thee only; to the end that, renouncing all for Thy love, we may be so happy as to win and possess Thee, without fear of losing Thee during eternity. Amen.–Thomas à Kempis–Imitation of Christ Bk I, Ch XX prayer.

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September Devotion: The Holy Cross.

Virtues to practice: Piety, fervor in the performance of sacred duties, the spirit of prayer


Mary, most holy Virgin and Queen of Martyrs, accept the sincere homage of my filial affection. Into thy heart, pierced by so many swords, do thou welcome my poor soul. Receive it as the companion of thy sorrows at the foot of the Cross, on which Jesus died for the redemption of the world. With thee, O sorrowful Virgin, I will gladly suffer all the trials, contradictions, and infirmities which it shall please our Lord to send me. I offer them all to thee in memory of thy sorrows, so that every thought of my mind, and every beat of my heart may be an act of compassion and of love for thee. And do thou, sweet Mother, have pity on me, reconcile me to thy divine Son Jesus, keep me in His grace and assist me in my last agony, so that I may be able to meet thee in heaven and sing thy glories. Amen.

An indulgence of 500 days


lnvocation of St. Thomas Aquinas to the Cross.Crucifixion

Crux mihi certa salus.
Crux est quam semper adoro.
Crux Domini mecum.
Crux mihi refugium.

The cross is my sure salvation.
The cross I ever adore.
The cross of my Lord is with me.
The cross is my refuge.

His Holiness, Pope Pius IX., by an autograph rescript, June 21, 1874, granted to all the faithful who, with at least contrite heart and devotion, shall say these prayers, drawn up in the form of a cross by the Angelic Doctor, S. Thomas Aquinas: AN INDULGENCE OF THREE HUNDRED DAYS, once a day.

Adoramus te, sanctissime Domine Jesu Christe, benedicimus tibi; quia per sanctam crucem tuam redemisti mundum.

We adore Thee, O most blessed Lord, Jesus Christ, we bless Thee; because by Thy holy cross Thou hast redeemed the world.

His Holiness, Pope Leo XIII., by a rescript of the S. Congr. of indulgences, March 4, 1882, granted to all the faithful who, with at least contrite heart and devotion, shall recite this ejaculation: AN INDULGENCE OF ONE HUNDRED DAYS, once a day.

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