Brother Giles on Holy Perseverance.
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.
Brother Giles on Holy Perseverance.
What profiteth a man to fast and to pray much, and to give alms, and afflict himself, and have sublime thoughts of heavenly things, if he attain not to the blessed and desired haven of eternal salvation, namely, final and holy perseverance? Often times we have seen a fair ship appear upon the sea, immense and strong and new, and laden with much treasure; and yet, overwhelmed by a storm, or else by the fault of the captain, it perishes, and is submerged, and miserably wrecked, and never attains the port for which it set out. What profit is there then, in its beauty and strength and treasure, since it has perished so miserably in the depths of the sea? And yet again, many a time we have seen on the sea a little ship, old, and carrying but little merchandise, but, having a good and skillful captain, it escaped every danger of the sea, and arrived at the desired haven; and thus also it often happens to us in the tempestuous sea of this world.
And, therefore, Brother Giles said: “A man should always fear; for although he may be in great prosperity or in great dignity, or have attained to a state of great perfection, yet if he have not a good captain, viz., skillful guidance to rule him, he may perish in the depths of vice: and therefore, in order to succeed, we need, above all other things, perseverance; for as the Apostle says: ‘Not he who has begun, but he who perseveres unto the end, shall receive the crown.’ When a tree first springs from the earth, it does not immediately grow to its full size; and when it is full grown, it does not on that account immediately bear fruit; and when the fruit comes, not all of it turns out useful to the owner; for much of the fruit drops to the ground and decays, and is not eaten, except by the animals; but the fruit that remains constantly on the tree, until the end of the season, is, for the most part, gathered by the owner thereof.”
And again, Brother Giles said: “What would it profit me to enjoy for a hundred years the glory of heaven, if I should not persevere, and so should not make a good end?” And yet again he said: “I consider the two greatest gifts and graces of God, which can be attained in this life, to be loving perseverance in the service of God, and to ever beware lest one fall into sin.”
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 Supporting Injuries, and who is proved to be truly patient.
[Christ.] III. He is not a truly patient man, who will suffer no more than he thinks good, and from whom he pleaseth.
The truly patient man minds not by whom it is he is exercised, whether by his superior, or by one of his equals, or by an inferior; whether by a good and holy man, or by one that is perverse and unworthy.
But how much soever and how often soever any adversity happens to him from anything created, he takes it all with equality of mind, as from the hand of God, with thanksgiving, and esteems it a great gain.
For nothing, how little soever, that is suffered for God’s sake, can pass without merit in the sight of God.– Imitation of Christ Bk III, Ch XIX.
February Devotion: The Holy Trinity (also the Holy Family)
Virtue to practice: Humility
I vow and consecrate to God all that is in me: my memory and my actions to God the Father; my understanding and my words to God the Son; my will and my thoughts to God the Holy Ghost; my heart, my body, my tongue my senses and all my sorrows to the sacred Humanity of Jesus Christ, ‘who was contented to be betrayed into the hands of wicked men and to suffer the torment of the Cross.’ – St. Francis de Sales
An indulgence of 3 years.
A plenary indulgence on the usual conditions, if this act of oblation is devoutly repeated every day for a monh (S.P.Ap., Sept. 22, 1922 and May 12, 1934).
The faithful who devoutly offer any prayers in honor of the Most Holy Trinity with the intention of continuing them for nine successive days, may gain:
An indulgence of 7 years once each day:
A plenary indulgence on the usual conditions at the end of the novena (S.C. Ind., Aug. 8 1847; S.P. Ap., Mar. 18, 1932).
Novena in Honor of Our Lady of Lourdes
O ever Immaculate Virgin, Mother of Mercy, Health of the Sick, Comforter of the Afflicted, thou knowest my wants, my troubles, my sufferings; deign to cast upon me a look of mercy. By appearing in the grotto of Lourdes thou wert pleased to make it a privileged sanctuary from where thou dost dispense thy favors, and already many sufferers have obtained the cure of their infirmities, both spiritual and corporal. I come, therefore, with the most unbounded confidence, to implore thy maternal intercession. Obtain, O loving Mother, the granting of my requests. Through gratitude for thy favors, I will endeavor to imitate thy virtues, that I may one day share in thy glory. R. Amen.
V. O Mary, conceived without sin,
R. Pray for us who have recourse to thee.
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