On the Hidden Life of Jesus at Nazareth until the Twelfth Year of His Age.

Saturday after the Second Sunday after the Epiphany.

On the Hidden Life of Jesus at Nazareth until the Twelfth Year of His Age.

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.

Saturday after the Second Sunday after the Epiphany.

On the Hidden Life of Jesus at Nazareth until the Twelfth Year of His Age.

To-day, my soul, go in spirit to the happy house at Nazareth, and contemplate the Holy Family, as they pursue their several avocations in blissful concord. Joseph is laboring in his workshop, the Blessed Virgin is occupied with the spinning-wheel on behalf of her divine Child, and Jesus, growing up a beauteous, winning child, busies Himself by His foster-father’s side, in fashioning, with divine prescience, little crosses out of the odds and ends of wood that He picks up.

Sacred history records nothing concerning the life of our Lord during His boyhood at Nazareth, but our imagination can place before us a very attractive picture of that period.

1st. Consider that, if every child may be compared to a flower, that involuntarily unfolds its petals to the sun, if every child feels himself drawn by nature to God, the eternal Sun; if he learns to pronounce the name of God at the same time as that of his father and mother, and loves to hear of God, and be taught to clasp his little hands in prayer on his mother’s lap; if he takes kindly to this knowledge, and drinks it in more readily than secular knowledge, such as reading and writing, what a delight it must have been to Mary to watch the progress of the divine Child. She saw Him of whom the Apostle says that “He was in all things like as we are, without sin,” daily disclosing more of the fulness of divine Wisdom resting in Him, advancing in wisdom as in age, and during the spiritual conversations of Mary and Joseph, taking the part of a teacher rather than that of a learner! What can we imagine to have passed in the soul of the Child when He accompanied His parents to the synagogue on the Sabbath, and there heard the Holy Scriptures read aloud, heard the prophecies concerning Himself, His birth, His Passion and His death! And when He knelt down to pray to His Father in Heaven – O my soul, can you ever tire of gazing at so fascinating a picture? If to behold an ordinary child at prayer, its tiny hands devoutly folded, its clear blue eyes raised to Heaven in the innocence of its heart, is so fair, so delightful a sight, what must it have been to behold the Child Jesus engaged in prayer! Wherefore you will do well to-day to impress this lovely image deeply on your mind, remembering the warning words: “Unless you become as this little child;” resolve that ere this day closes you will become a little child again, and pray to your God with the same childlike simplicity and piety as you did in the days of your childhood.

2d. If every child rejoices in the special protection of its Guardian Angel, whose guidance is often manifested in a visible manner, how gladly the angels must have surrounded the Child Jesus, partly with the object of protecting Him “lest He dash His foot against a stone,” partly in order to pay Him their tribute of veneration and adoration, and to derive edification for themselves from His conduct, from the admiration and astonishment excited by His wondrous humility, His incomprehensible self-abasement. Let us not forget that the angels had beheld this poor and lowly Child in all His glory and divine majesty; what then can they have thought, have felt, when they were present in the house at Nazareth and saw Jesus in such abjection! Strive to enter into their sentiments, my soul, and then unite with the angels in acts of adoration, and aspirations of ardent affection towards the divine Child.

3d. If every good child loves his parents more than anyone else, and on the other hand is himself the greatest delight of those parents, what words can describe the love, the obedience, the attachment of Jesus to Mary and Joseph! What touching subjects for meditation present themselves to you, my soul, when in imagination you watch the sweet Child Jesus helping His parents at their work in the house at Nazareth. He who made the sea and feeds the rivers, draws water from the well; He “whose fan is in His hand,” who will thoroughly cleanse His floor, sweeps out the room where they habitually dwell; He who created the trees of the forest, and planted the cedars of Lebanus, gathers up the shavings from the floor of Joseph’s workshop. What can Joseph and Mary have felt at seeing Him thus employed! Look upon the Child Jesus and blush with shame; be ashamed that in the pride of your heart you have fulfilled so grudgingly, in so unamiable a manner, work that is of a menial description, or that brings you no credit, which has fallen to your lot in the convent, in the course of your ministry, in the pursuit of your calling. Now at least make a resolution that from this day forth you will strive to please your Superior, and at the same time to please God, by your humble obedience, such obedience as that wherewith the sweet Child Jesus rejoiced the hearts of Joseph and Mary.

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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holy name_________________________________________________

Litany of the Most Holy Name of Jesus

Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us.
Jesus, hear us.
Jesus, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.
Jesus, Son of the living God, have mercy on us.
Jesus, splendor of the Father, have mercy on us.
Jesus, brightness of eternal light, have mercy on us.
Jesus, King of glory, have mercy on us.
Jesus, sun of justice, have mercy on us.
Jesus, Son of the Virgin Mary, have mercy on us.
Jesus, most amiable, have mercy on us.
Jesus, most admirable, have mercy on us.
Jesus, the mighty God, have mercy on us.
Jesus, father of the world to come, have mercy on us.
Jesus, Angel of great counsel, have mercy on us.
Jesus, most powerful, have mercy on us.
Jesus, most patient, have mercy on us.
Jesus, most obedient, have mercy on us.
Jesus, meek and humble of heart, have mercy on us.
Jesus, lover of Chastity, have mercy on us.
Jesus, lover of us, have mercy on us.
Jesus, God of peace, have mercy on us.
Jesus, author of life, have mercy on us.
Jesus, example of virtues, have mercy on us.
Jesus, zealous lover of souls, have mercy on us.
Jesus, our God, have mercy on us.
Jesus, our refuge, have mercy on us.
Jesus, father of the poor, have mercy on us.
Jesus, treasure of the faithful, have mercy on us.
Jesus, good Shepherd, have mercy on us.
Jesus, true light, have mercy on us.
Jesus, eternal wisdom, have mercy on us.
Jesus, infinite goodness, have mercy on us.
Jesus, our way and our life, have mercy on us.
Jesus, joy of the Angels, have mercy on us.
Jesus, King of the Patriarchs, have mercy on us.
Jesus, Master of the Apostles, have mercy on us.
Jesus, Teacher of the Evangelists, have mercy on us.
Jesus, strength of Martyrs, have mercy on us.
Jesus, light of Confessors, have mercy on us.
Jesus, purity of Virgins, have mercy on us.
Jesus, crown of all Saints, have mercy on us.
Be merciful, spare us, O Jesus!
Be merciful, graciously hear us, O Jesus!
From all evil, deliver us, O Jesus.
From all sin, deliver us, O Jesus.
From Thy wrath, deliver us, O Jesus.
From the snares of the devil, deliver us, O Jesus.
From the spirit of fornication, deliver us, O Jesus.
From everlasting death, deliver us, O Jesus.
From the neglect of Thine inspirations, deliver us, O Jesus.
By the mystery of Thy holy Incarnation, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thy Nativity, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thine Infancy, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thy most divine life, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thy labors, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thine agony and Passion, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thy Cross and dereliction, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thy sufferings, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thy death and burial, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thy Resurrection, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thine Ascension, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thine institution of the most Holy Eucharist, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thy joys, deliver us, O Jesus.
By Thy glory, deliver us, O Jesus.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, spare us, O Jesus!
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, hear us, O Jesus!
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, have mercy on us, O Jesus!
Jesus, hear us.
Jesus, graciously hear us.

Let Us Pray.

O Lord Jesus Christ, who has said, Ask and ye shall receive, seek, and ye shall find, knock, and it shall be opened unto you, mercifully attend to our supplications, and grant us the gift of Thy divine charity, that we may ever love Thee with our whole heart and with all our words and deeds, and may never cease from praising Thee.

Make us, O Lord, to have a perpetual fear and love of Thy holy Name, for Thou never failest to help and to govern those whom Thou dost bring up in Thy steadfast love: who livest and reignest forever and ever. Amen.

Raccolta 113 An indulgence of 7 years. A plenary indulgence once a month on the usual conditions, for the daily and devout recitation of this litany (S. C. Ind., Jan. 16, 1886; S. P. Ap., Jan. 2, 1933).
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Prayer in honor of the Most Holy Name

O sweet Name of Jesus, holy above all names in heaven and on earth, and to which every knee, both of men and of angels in heaven, on earth and in hell bends. Thou art the way of the just, the glory of the saints, the hope of those in need, the balm of the sick, the love of the devout and the consolation of those that suffer.

O, Jesus be to me a help and a protector so that Thy Name may be blessed for all times. – Thomas A. Kempis

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Prayer of Reparation in Praise of the Holy Name of God entitled:

“The Golden Arrow”

May the most holy, most sacred, most adorable, most incomprehensible and unutterable Name of God be always praised, blessed, loved, adored and glorified in heaven on earth and under the earth, by all the creatures of God, and by the Sacred Heart of our Lord Jesus Christ in the most Holy Sacrament of the altar. Amen.

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Prayer in honor of the Holy Name

O my Jesus, Thou art the Savior who hast given Thy blood and Thy life for me, I pray Thee to write Thy adorable name on my poor heart; so that having it always imprinted in my heart by love, I may also have it ever on my lips, by invoking it in all my necessities. If the devil tempts me, Thy name will give me strength to resist him; if I lose confidence, Thy name will animate me to hope; if I am in affliction, Thy name will comfort me, by reminding me of all Thou hast endured for me. If I find myself cold in Thy love, Thy name will inflame me by reminding me of the love Thou hast shown me. Hitherto I have fallen into so many sins, because I did not call on Thee; from henceforth Thy name shall be my defense, my refuge, my hope, my only consolation, my only love. Thus do I hope to live, and so do I hope to die, having Thy name always on my lips.

Most holy Virgin, obtain for me the grace of invoking the name of Thy Son Jesus in all my necessities, together with thine own, my Mother Mary; but let me invoke them always with confidence and love, so that I may be able also to say to thee as did the devout Alphonsus Rodriguez: “Jesus and Mary, may I suffer for thee; may I die for thee; may I be wholly thine, and in nothing my own!” O my beloved Jesus! O Mary, my beloved Lady! give me the grace to suffer and to die for thy love. I will be no longer my own, but altogether thine; thine in life, and thine in death, when I hope by thy help to expire saying, Jesus and Mary, help me! Jesus and Mary, I recommend myself to thee; Jesus and Mary, I love thee, and I give and deliver up to thee my whole soul.

The Incarnation, Birth and Infancy of Jesus Christ by St. Alphonsus de Liguori. p. 163 (Imprimatur 1927)


P.S. 27th day for anyone praying Total Consecration by St. Louis de Montfort that ends February 2nd!
The 3rd day of the Our Lady of Good Success Novena.

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