Monday after the Second Sunday of Advent.

 Reparation for the Sin of Adam.

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.

Reparation for the Sin of Adam.

I am come that they may have life and may have it more abundantly. (John x, 10.)

CONSIDER FIRSTLY, that Adam having by disobedience lost original justice, and having incurred the penalty of death and countless woes for himself and all his descendants, the Divine Goodness would not delay in providing a remedy to such great misery, in order that it might be made evident how much God has at heart the salvation of all men. Who will have all men to be saved. (I Tim. ii, 4.) It was also in order that you might learn, when you have been surprised into some sin or fault, not to allow yourself to remain in that unhappy state, but to have recourse at once to the remedy by rising up from your fall and not to make matters worse by delay.

APPLICATION. Use this alacrity even in your smallest faults, e.g. correcting some act of impatience or of pride or of vanity by an act of the opposite virtue; and thus your gain will be greater than the harm done.

AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. I cried unto Thee, O save me, that I may keep Thy commandments. (Ps. cxviii, 146.)

CONSIDER SECONDLY, that God in preparing a remedy for the sin of Adam, willed also to comfort him by the promise of a Redeemer Who should spring from his own race, and Who would restore superabundantly all the damage wrought by that deceiver the serpent upon him and upon his descendants, freeing them from the slavery of Satan and raising them to a sublime height of glory. What sentiments of gratitude and of tenderness, think you, arose in Adam’s heart at this promise?

APPLICATION. Your heart too should experience the like feelings of gratitude, you who have been made a sharer of so much good. By your own personal sins you have renewed in yourself all the evils of original sin, but you must not therefore be alarmed nor lose hope in your Redeemer, Who stands ready on His side to raise you up and do all for your greater good. Know you not that many terribly guilty sinners have been raised by the hand of God to a very high degree of virtue? Cast yourself then at the feet of Jesus with true confidence, and with the utmost fervour, and doubt not but that all will be well.

AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS. According to the multitude of Thy tender mercies blot out my iniquity. (Ps. 1, 3.)

CONSIDER THIRDLY, that the promise of a future Redeemer made to Adam in the beginning, was confirmed by God to his descendants by many prophecies, types and sacrifices, in order that all might rejoice in the remedy and the fruit of the merits of Christ through their faith in Him. The infinite merits of Christ are extended to all times and to all men, whether past or present or future.

APPLICATION. Of these same merits of Jesus Christ you can even more copiously participate, by reason of a clearer knowledge of this mystery of the Incarnation and by means of the Sacraments of the new law. Will you not at least be grateful to Him? How much better than you do, would the Fathers of old have profited by the same, had they received the lights and the favours that have been accorded to you. Be abashed and deplore your own ingratitude.

AFFECTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS, With the Lord there is mercy, and with Him is plenteous redemption. (Ps. cxxix, 7.)

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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Advent Devotions

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.

Bend Thine ear, O Lord, we beseech Thee, to our prayers, and enlighten the darkness of our minds by the grace of Thy visitation; 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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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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Prayers in Time of Calamity
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