Monday after the Twenty-Second Sunday after Pentecost.—The Divine Judgment.

Monday after the Twenty-Second Sunday after Pentecost.—The Divine Judgment.

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 Twenty-Second Sunday after Pentecost.—The Divine Judgment.

They shall render account for it in the day of judgment. (Matt. xii, 36.)

CONSIDER FIRSTLY how the saints have all feared the divine judgment. St. Hilary after seventy years of faithful service to God trembled and was afraid. If then you do not fear it, you need to fear it all the more, because you are far from being like the saints. And first you should fear this judgment on account of yourself. For if there are none, even among the saints, who can say: My heart is clean (Prov. xx, 9), how can you say it, who more than once perhaps have by sin lost your innocence and baptismal grace, and who now cannot be certain of having regained it by due repentance? And if you have recovered it, who can assure you that you will not lose it again? Do you not hear what holy Job says: Behold, among His saints none is unchangeable. (Job xv, 15,)

APPLICATION. If even among the holy there have been terrible falls, what should you not fear for yourself? All your life you have so badly corresponded to the lights, the invitations, and the inspirations of God. You who have been so negligent in good, so ungrateful for benefits received, and who daily commit so many venial sins. Now see whether you yourself have not reason to fear the divine judgment.

AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. And enter not into judgment with Thy servant: for in Thy sight no man living shall be justified. (Ps. cxlii, 2.)

CONSIDER SECONDLY that you should fear this judgment still more on account of the judge. In Himself He is perfect holiness, and supremely abhors every stain of sin. He most thoroughly searches it out, and punishes it most severely. I am He that searcheth the reins and the heart. (Apoc. ii, 23.) How much you should guard against all those evil movements of the heart! These movements are so insidious and so hard for you to judge of. And yet it is of these that our Lord will make the most solemn examination: He searcheth the reins and the heart, leaving not the least atom of evil unpunished.

APPLICATION. Bear always in mind then that, before the divine Presence, the sins and imperfections of even the holiest shall be discovered. The heavens are not pure in His sight. (Job xv, 15.) O how much then it is to your advantage to keep yourself far from the danger of such a judgment!

AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. And enter not into judgment with Thy servant: for in Thy sight no man living shall be justified. (Ps. cxlii, 2.)

CONSIDER THIRDLY what is the true and only way of escaping this most terrible judgment of God. It is by confessing now that you are ashamed of your conduct, by declaring to Him now beforehand that you are guilty. If you do this God will not enter into judgment with you, because you are already judged by yourself. Such is the benefit that accrues to him who from his heart confesses himself to be guilty, that he is thereupon absolved. If we would judge ourselves we should not be judged. (I Cor. xi, 31.)

APPLICATION. Strive to keep keenly alive before the eyes of your soul the knowledge of your own misery. Recall it often before God. Acknowledge it before Him, saying with a contrite heart: Enter not into judgment with Thy servant. (Ps. cxlii, 2.) You will see how salutary this will be to you.

AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. The judgments of the Lord are true, justified in themselves. (Ps. xviii, 10.)

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 Judgment and the punishment of Sins.

O Lord, strike my heart with that salutary fear of Thy judgments which is the beginning of true wisdom. Grant that this fear may be followed by hope and confidence, and that Thy divine love may crown all its gifts; so that, loving Thee above all things, I may place all my happiness in serving Thee alone; and that, having served Thee with fidelity on earth, I may glorify Thee for ever in heaven. Amen.–Thomas à Kempis–Imitation of Christ Bk I, Ch XXIV prayer.

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November Devotion: The Holy Souls in Purgatory.

Virtues to practice: Charity and kindness.


Most loving Jesus, I humbly beseech Thee, that Thou Thyself wouldst offer to Thine eternal Father in behalf of the Holy Souls in purgatory, the Most Precious Blood which poured forth from the sacred wounds of Thine adorable Body, together with Thine agony and death. And do thou likewise, O sorrowful Virgin Mary, present unto Him, together with the dolorous Passion of thy dear Son, thine own sighs and tears, and all the sorrows thou didst suffer in His suffering, in order that, through the merits of the same, refreshment may be granted to the souls now suffering in the fiery torments of purgatory, so that, being delivered from that painful prison, they may be clothed with glory in heaven, there to sing the mercies of God for ever and ever. Amen.
Absolve, O Lord, the souls of all the faithful departed from every bond of sin, that with Thy gracious assistance they may deserve to escape the judgment of vengeance and enjoy the blessedness of everlasting light.
V. Eternal rest grant unto them O Lord
R. And let perpetual light shine upon them.
V. From the gates of hell,
R. Deliver their souls, O Lord.
V. May they rest in peace.
R. Amen.
V. O Lord, hear my prayer.
R. And let my cry come unto Thee.

Let us pray.

O, God, the Creator and Redeemer of all the faithful; grant unto the souls of Thy servants and handmaids the remission of all their sins: that through our devout supplications they may obtain the pardon they have always desired. Who livest and reignest world without end. Amen.
Eternal rest, etc.

An indulgence of 3 years. A plenary indulgence on the usual conditions, if these prayers are said daily for a month (S. C. md., Sept. 15, 1888; S. P. Ap., April 25, 1934).

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