Friday after the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost.

Friday after the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost.
On the Charity of Jesus During His Passion.

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.

Friday after the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost.
On the Charity of Jesus During His Passion.

It is always a pleasing sight to see any one perform a kind action towards his neighbor; and when the charitable work is done at the cost of self-denial and stern self-sacrifice, it merits our admiration in a far higher degree. But what calls for the highest admiration, what is most touching, most deeply affecting is to see a man suffering excruciating agony, nay, in the very pangs of death, in his last agony, yet so forgetful of self, that his words, his actions still breathe tender charity for his fellow men. This impressive sight is afforded by the Redeemer in His Passion and death, which are recalled to mind every Friday.

1st. Consider the charity that actuated Him during the terrible agony in the Garden of Olives. Apart from the fact that charity was the cause, the motive of His Passion as a whole, observe how charity was exhibited in every, even the smallest detail, and was apparent throughout the course of the Passion, from the time of His going up to the Mount of Olives until He drew His last breath upon the cross. When He went into the Garden of Olives He left eight of His disciples behind, out of tender compassion for their frailty, sparing them the sight of their Master’s agony lest it might cause their faith to waver. With the fear of death oppressing Him He prays, He keeps His tearful vigil, holding aloof from the three disciples who are asleep, lovingly desirous to spare them, although in His anguish and desolation their presence would have been a comfort to Him. When the executioners came to apprehend Him, He does not think of Himself; His only concern is for the disciples who took no part with Him in His agony. For them He entreats His enemies: “If you seek Me, let these go their way.” (St. John xviii. 8.) On seeing Malchus, one of His foes, bleeding from the blow struck by Peter, He lovingly stretches out His hand to heal him, the self-same beneficent hand on which Malchus has come to put fetters. Look, my soul, into this mirror of charity which your suffering Lord holds up to your view, and compare your charity towards your neighbor with that which He manifested in His agony on the Mount of Olives—sparing, saving, interceding for others.

2d. Consider furthermore His charity during the bitter sufferings He endured throughout the night and in the morning after His arrest. With loving patience and in silence He bears the coarse maltreatment of the soldiers, in order not to provoke them to the increase of their guilt, and yet more in order to touch their hearts, if possible, by His patience. Without a single word of reproach He turns His eyes upon Peter after his fall with so loving an expression, that he who had denied Him a moment before bewails his fault with tears of repentance. He rewards the trifling service rendered to Him by Veronica with the gift of the miraculous image imprinted on her veil; nor does He fail, despite His deadly fatigue, His own deep need of solace, to address words of loving consolation, of salutary admonition, to the weeping women of Jerusalem. Such was the fraternal charity exercised by Jesus when led captive along the via crucis, whereas you, one of God’s chosen servants, a special object of His favor, living in the most favorable circumstances, so rarely practise this virtue. You treat your neighbor with unkindness and impatience, instead of with kind forbearance; the fire of hatred and revenge too often gleams in your eyes instead of compassionate forgiveness; instead of returning grateful thanks you sometimes requite good with evil, and instead of comforting the afflicted, you are the cause of grief to others. How much longer will you plead guilty to this indictment?

3d. Consider the charity of Jesus whilst hanging upon the cross. One would have imagined that in this hour of awful torture, in the agony of death, that our Lord would no longer have had the wish, the power to exercise the same loving solicitude for men. But it is not so. As long as His heart beats, it throbs with love; as long as His lips can move, they utter words of love, and until His eyes grow dim in death, they dwell with looks of love upon unhappy mortals. “Father, forgive them,” such is His loving prayer on behalf of those who crucified Him. “This day thou shalt be with Me in paradise,” such is the loving consolation He gives to the repentant thief. “Woman, behold thy son,” such are the words wherewith the dying Son, in loving anxiety for His Mother, commends her to the care of the apostle. And even when His eyes are closed, His lips benumbed by death, those being the only instruments left Him after His hands were fixed to the cross by nails, the only means whereby to exercise His ardent charity, even then He causes His side to be pierced, in order that His loving heart may ever be open to receive all who need His aid. O my soul, is it possible that with charity such as this before you, the charity displayed by your Lord and Master in His Passion and death, you can be so cold, so wanting in charity towards your Brethren, your Sisters? And yet you can look up, without blushing with shame, to your crucified Lord, and can take His holy name upon your lips!

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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July Devotion: The Precious Blood of Jesus

Virtue to practice: Simplicity, Faith, Liberty of Spirit, Cheerfulness


Prayers in honor of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus.

Most merciful Jesus, lover of souls! I pray Thee, by the agony of Thy most Sacred Heart, and by the sorrows of Thy Immaculate Mother, wash in Thy Blood the sinners of the whole world who are now in their agony, and who are to die this day. Amen.

Heart of Jesus, once in agony, pity the dying.

100 days indul.—Pius IX., Feb. 1850.

“May Thy Blood, shed for us, O Lord Jesus Christ, obtain for me the remission of all my sins, my negligences, my ignorance; may It strengthen, increase and preserve within me, Faith, Hope, Charity, Grace, and every virtue, may It bring me to everlasting life; may It deliver the souls of my parents and of all those for whom I am bound to pray.” —St. Catharine of Sienna.


Almighty, and everlasting God, who hast appointed Thine only-begotten Son to be the Redeemer of the world, and hast been pleased to be reconciled unto us by His Blood, grant us, we beseech Thee, so to venerate with solemn worship the price of our salvation, that the power thereof may here on earth keep us from all things hurtful, and the fruit of the same may gladden us forever hereafter in heaven. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

(Roman Missal)


Prayers to St. Philomena


Novena to St. Philomena (from July 1st through August 10th)

Illustrious Virgin and Martyr, St. Philomena, behold me kneeling in spirit before the throne on which it has pleased the Most Holy Trinity to place thee. Full of confidence in thy protection, I beseech thee to intercede for me with God. From the height of thy heavenly country, deign to cast a look upon thy humble servant. Spouse of Jesus Christ, console me in my troubles, strengthen me in temptations, protect me in the dangers which surround me on every side; obtain all the graces necessary for me, especially (here mention your particular intention), and, above all, assist me at my death. Amen.


For Victory over Temptations.

O God, who dost sustain us by the merits and example of the blessed Philomena, Virgin and Martyr, mercifully grant that, strengthened in faith and charity, we may never be separated from Thee by any temptation. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.


For Growth in Virtues.

O glorious Virgin! whose glory God has been pleased to make known by singular miracles, we address ourselves to thee with entire confidence. Obtain for us that, following thy example, we may fight courageously against whatever is opposed to the reign of Jesus Christ in our heart; that we may adorn our souls with virtues like thine, particularly with that angelic purity of which thou art the perfect model; and that inflamed with the love of Jesus, we may continually walk in the way which He has marked out, to the end that we may one day partake of thy everlasting happiness. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, who with the Father and the Holy Ghost, lives and reigns one God in perfect Trinity, for ever and ever. Amen.


Prayer for Purity.

O glorious Saint Philomena, who, animated by a burning love for Jesus our Savior, didst shine in Holy Church by the splendor of perfect virginity and the practice of the most heroic virtues, obtain for us of thy Divine Spouse the grace to keep ever unsullied the precious treasure of chastity and to practice with generosity the virtues of our state, that having, after thy example, walked in His footsteps during our life on earth, we may, with thee, rejoice in His glory eternally.

Saint Philomena, happy virgin, adorned with all the charm of innocence, and beautified, besides, with the purple of martyrdom, obtain for us the grace to know how to suffer all, and to sacrifice all in order to be faithful to God till death, and possess Him eternally in paradise.


For Detachment from Earthly Goods.

O Saint Philomena, faithful virgin and glorious martyr, who so courageously preferred to the visible goods of this world the invisible goods of a holy eternity, obtain for us a lively faith, an ardent charity, and a piety always increasing, in order that, faithfully serving our Lord Jesus Christ during our life, we may merit after our death the happiness of contemplating Him face to face in life eternal. Amen.

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Act of Perfect Contrition
Oh my God! I am heartily sorry
for having offended Thee and
I detest all my sins because
I dread the loss of Heaven and the pains of Hell;
But most of all because I have offended Thee, My God,

Who art all-good and deserving of all my love.
I firmly resolve, with the help of Thy grace,
To confess my sins, to do penance,
And to amend my life. Amen.

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