Goodness of God the Father and of God the Son in the Work of the Redemption.

Goodness of God the Father and of God the Son in the Work of the Redemption.

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.

Goodness of God the Father and of God the Son in the Work of the Redemption.

Et incarnatus est de Spiritu Sancto ex Maria Virgine, et homo factus est.

“And became incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary, and was made man.”—Symb. Const.

I.

God created Adam, and enriched him with gifts; but man, ungrateful, offended him by sinning, and thus both he and all we, his descendants, remained deprived of divine grace and paradise. Thus, then, all mankind was lost and without a remedy. Man had offended God, and therefore was incapable of giving him an adequate satisfaction; it was necessary then that a divine person should satisfy for man. What does the eternal Father to save lost man? He sent this same Son to become man, and clothe Himself with the same flesh as sinful men, in order that by His death He might pay their debts to divine justice, and thus obtain for them a restoration to divine grace.

O my God, if Thy infinite bounty had not discovered this remedy, who of us could ever have asked it, or even imagined it?

II.

O God, what a subject of wonder must not this great love which God showed to rebellious man have been to the angels! What must they have said when they saw the eternal Word become man, and assume the same flesh as sinful man, insomuch that this Word incarnate appeared to the whole world in the form of a sinful man, as were all others. O my Jesus, how much do we not owe Thee, and how much more than others am I not indebted to Thee, who have offended Thee so much more than others! If Thou hadst not come to save me, what would have become of me for all eternity? Who could have saved me from the pains that I deserve? Mayest Thou be ever blessed and praised for so great love!

III.

Thus, then, the Son of God comes from heaven on earth, and becomes man; He comes to live a life of suffering; He comes to die upon the cross for the love of man; and shall men who believe all this love any other object besides this incarnate God?

O Jesus my Saviour, I will love none other but Thee; Thou alone hast loved me, Thee alone will I love. I renounce all created goods; Thou alone art sufficient for me, O immense and infinite Good! If hitherto I have displeased Thee, I am now heartily sorry for it, and would wish that this sorrow might make me die, to compensate in some measure for the displeasure I have caused Thee. Oh, permit me not in future to be ever again ungrateful for the love Thou hast borne me. No, my Jesus, make me love Thee, and then treat me as Thou pleasest. O infinite Bounty, O infinite Love, I will only live henceforth to love Thee! O Mary, Mother of mercy, this one favor I ask of thee, obtain for me the grace of always, always loving God.

-St. Alphonsus Ligouri

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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Come, let us adore the King our Lord, who is to come!

Hymn from the Office of Lauds for Advent

The solemn voice of the Precursor is heard, explaining the obscurity of the ancient figures; let our slumbers cease; Jesus is rising on our horizon.

Let the sluggish soul now rise, and stay no more upon this earth; a new star is shining, which will take all sin away.

Lo! the Lamb is sent to forgive us freely our debt; let us unite in tears and prayers, that we may obtain pardon.

That when He comes the second time, filling the world with fear, He may not have to punish us for our sins, but may protect us in mercy.

Power, honour, praise, and glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Paraclete, for ever and ever. Amen.

Prayers from the Office and the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass for Advent

V. O Lord, hear my prayer.

R. And let my cry come unto Thee.

Almighty Lord and God, who hast brought us to the beginning of this day, let thy powerful grace so conduct us through it, that we may not fall into any sin, but that all our thoughts, words, and actions may be regulated according to the rules of thy heavenly justice, and tend to the observance of thy holy law. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

V. Incline unto my aid, O God.

R. O Lord, make haste to help me.

Lord God, and King of heaven and earth, vouchsafe this day to rule and sanctify, to direct and govern our souls and bodies, our senses, words, and actions in conformity to Thy law, and strict obedience to Thy commands; that by the help of Thy grace, O Saviour of the world! we may be fenced and freed from all evils. Who livest and reignest for ever and ever. Amen.

V. O Lord God of hosts, come and deliver us.
R. Show Thy face, and we shall be saved.
V. Show us, O Lord, thy mercy.
R. And grant us the Saviour, whom we expect from Thee.
V. The Lord shall rise upon thee, O Jerusalem!
R. And His glory shall be seen upon thee.

Exert, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy power and come; that by thy protection we may be freed from the imminent dangers of our sins, and be saved by Thy mercy; who livest and reignest God, world without end. Amen.

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Novena for Advent

Hail and blessed be the hour and the moment in which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight, in Bethlehem, in piercing cold. In that hour vouchsafe, O my God! To hear my prayer and grant my desires, through the merits of Our Savior Jesus Christ, and of His blessed Mother. Amen.

(It is piously believed that whoever recites the above prayer fifteen times a day from the feast of St. Andrew (Nov. 30th) until Christmas will obtain what is asked.)

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