Saturday after the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost.—God Our Teacher.
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 Ninth Sunday after Pentecost.—God Our Teacher.
You call me Master and Lord; and you say well, for so I am. (John xiii, 13.)
CONSIDER FIRSTLY that God Himself wishes to be your chiefest Master, to instruct and to teach you by means of prayer. When He speaks to you through the mouths of others, He gives you lessons as a public teacher, but when He speaks to you in prayer, He is your own special and private Teacher. He intends to teach you in this school not high or subtle things, but those that are useful. I teach thee profitable things (Isaias xlviii, 17), He says by means of His prophet, things ordained for the extirpation of sins, for the acquisition of virtue and of a closer union with God.
APPLICATION. Whether your prayer is profitable or not, is shown not by the lights, nor the tears therein, but by its leading to your living a more mortified, strong, and fervent life. When you reap not any profit in your manner of life from prayer, you may rightly suspect it, for it is a school intended to lead to practice.
AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. Let my prayer come in before Thee: incline Thy ear to my petition. (Ps. lxxxvii, 3.)
CONSIDER SECONDLY that this Master does not only teach you by word, but also by His example: I myself that spoke behold I am here. (Isa. lii, 6.) You have not to weary yourself in searching far and wide for a workable rule for your actions. It is enough for you that you look at Jesus Christ, and see how He acted in whatever matter you have in hand. All other rules are apt to lead astray. The quickest and the surest one is to look at the actions of your divine Master: And thine eyes shall see thy teacher. (Isa. xxx, 20.)
APPLICATION. Nothing can ever happen for which you have not an example at once ready for you in Him. Reflect on the life of Christ, and thus regulate your actions in any proof which God may put you to, either by means of prosperity, or by adversity, or by means of the devil. How have you tried thus far to profit by His divine example?
AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. Behold, O God our protector, and look upon the face of thy Christ. (Ps. lxxxiii. 10.)
CONSIDER THIRDLY that this Divine Master does not only give you lessons profitable to you in the school of prayer, but also enables you to understand them and gives you the strength to put them in practice. Behold then with what zest you should go to so profitable a school, the school of prayer. How many simple folk by the purity of their lives have come to understand in prayer things unknown to the wise! How many souls in the time of prayer have been strengthened to embrace the virtues of patience, of humility, of charity, which before had seemed to them impossible to hope to attain!
APPLICATION. How far do you appreciate and value such a Master, Who in the act of giving you His instruction gives you also the capacity and the strength to avail yourself of it? By his knowledge shall this my just servant justify many. (Isa. liii, II.)
AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. I have lifted up my eyes to the mountains: from whence help shall come to me. My help is from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. (Ps. cxx, 1-2.)
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.
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.
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.
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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