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Thought for the Day – 15 September – The Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows

Thought for the Day – 15 September – The Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows

The Seven Sorrows of
the Blessed Virgin Mary

1. The prophecy of Simeon
2. The Flight to Egypt
3. Loss of Child Jesus for 3 days
4. Meeting Jesus carrying His Cross
5. The Crucifixion of Jesus
6. The Pieta – receiving Jesus’ Body
7. The Burial of Jesus

“The Liturgy teaches us to meditate on the sorrows of Mary.   So we turn once more to a memory of sadness, an example of patient endurance, to remind ourselves, for our own good, that our whole life here below is beset with trials and difficulties.   It is a life of hardships but at the end, we shall receive the reward of eternal joy.

So we must always take courage – Jesus, Mary and Joseph, give us the certainty of future triumphs.   In every moment of their earthly lives, they knew sorrow, privations and suffering and yet, they always reflected the eternal splendour of heaven.

The lesson all the faithful may learn from such sublime examples, is a continual encouragement and strength, by means of which, rising again after every failure and correcting the faults of our temperaments, we may all seek to reach that shore, whee perfect peace and blessing are to be found.”St Pope John XXIII

John’s account of Jesus’ death is highly symbolic.   When Jesus gives the beloved disciple to Mary, we are invited to appreciate Mary’s role in the Church – she symbolises the Church, the beloved disciple represents all believers.   As Mary mothered Jesus, she is now mother to all his followers.   Furthermore, as Jesus died, he handed over His Spirit. Mary and the Spirit co-operated in begetting new children of God—almost an echo of Luke’s account of Jesus’ conception.   Christians can trust that they will continue to experience the caring presence of Mary and Jesus’ Spirit throughout their lives and throughout history.

Prayer to our Lady of Sorrows
By St Bonaventure (1217-1274) Doctor of the Church

O most holy Virgin, 
Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ,
by the overwhelming grief you experienced
when you witnessed the martyrdom,
the crucifixion
and the death, of your divine Son,
look upon me with eyes of compassion
and awaken in my heart a tender 
commiseration for those sufferings,
as well as a sincere detestation
of my sins, in order that,
being disengaged from all undue affection
for the passing joys of this earth,
I may sigh after the eternal Jerusalem
and that henceforward all my thoughts
and all my actions may be directed
towards this one most desirable object,
the honour, glory and love 
to our divine Lord Jesus,
and to the you,
the Holy and Immaculate 
Mother of God. 
Amenprayer-to-our-lady-of-sorrows-st-bonaventure-1-sept-2018

Our Lady of Sorrows,

Our Lady our Mother,

Our Lady our Consoler,

Pray for us all!our-lady-of-sorrows-pray-for-us-2-15 sept 2017holy mary mother of our saviour, pray for us - 17 may 2018our lady consoler of the afflicted - pray for us - 24 may 2018

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Our Morning Offering – 15 September – The Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows

Our Morning Offering – 15 September – The Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows

STABAT MATER

At the cross her station keeping,
Stood the mournful Mother weeping,
Close to Jesus to the last.
Through her heart, His sorrow sharing,
All His bitter anguish bearing,
Now at length the sword had passed.

Oh, how sad and sore distressed
Was that Mother highly blest,
Of the sole begotten One!
Christ above in torment hangs.
She beneath beholds the pangs
Of her dying glorious Son.

Is there one who would not weep,
Whelmed in miseries so deep,
Christ’s dear Mother to behold?
Can the human heart refrain
From partaking in her pain,
In that Mother’s pain untold?

Bruised, derided, cursed, defiled,
She beheld her tender Child,
All with bloody scourges rent.
For the sins of His own nation,
Saw Him hang in desolation
Till His spirit forth He sent.

O thou Mother: fount of love!
Touch my spirit from above,
Make my heart with thine accord.
Make me feel as thou hast felt;
Make my soul to glow and melt
With the love of Christ my Lord.

Holy Mother, pierce me through;
In my heart each wound renew
Of my Savior crucified.
Let me share with thee His pain,
Who for all my sins was slain,
Who for me in torment died.

Let me mingle tears with thee,
Mourning Him who mourned for me,
All the days that I may live.
By the Cross with thee to stay;
There with thee to weep and pray,
Is all I ask of thee to give.

Virgin of all virgins best,
Listen to my fond request:
Let me share thy grief divine.
Let me to my latest breath,
In my body bear the death
Of that dying Son of thine.

Wounded with His every wound,
Steep my soul till it hath swooned
In His very blood away.
Be to me, O Virgin, nigh,
Lest in flames I burn and die,
In His awful Judgment day.

Christ, when Thou shalt call me hence,
Be Thy Mother my defense,
Be Thy Cross my victory.
While my body here decays,
May my soul Thy goodness praise,
Safe in Paradise with Thee.
Amen

Note:  This text of the Stabat Mater is one of over 60 translations of this famous Latin hymn that can also be recited in prayer. It is often used when praying the Stations of the Cross. The original Latin text of the Stabat Mater has also been set to music by such composers as Haydn, Rossini, and Poulenc.stabat mater as a prayer - 15 sept 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN PRAYERS, Our MORNING Offering, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Our Morning Offering – 13 September – The Memorial of St John Chrysostom (347-407) Father & Doctor of the Church

Our Morning Offering – 13 September – The Memorial of St John Chrysostom (347-407) Father & Doctor of the Church

Hail, O Mother!
By St John Chrysostom (347-407) Father & Doctor of the Church

Hail, O Mother!
Virgin, heaven, throne,
glory of our Church,
its foundation and ornament.
Earnestly pray for us to Jesus,
your Son and Our Lord,
that through your intercession
we may have mercy on the day of judgment.
Pray that we may receive
all those good things
which are reserved for those who love God.
Through the grace and favour of Our Lord,
Jesus Christ, to whom,
with the Father
and the Holy Spirit,
be power, honour and glory,
now and forever.
Amenhail o mother - by st john chrysostom - 13 sept 2018

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Thought for the Day – 4 September – The Feast of Our Lady of Consolation

Thought for the Day – 4 September – The Feast of Our Lady of Consolation

The tradition of praying to the Mother of God for the gift of consolation dates back to the early centuries.   The first written evidence of prayer to the Mother of God, Mary, the Theotokos, is written in Greek on a scrap of Egyptian papyrus dating from between 300-540.   In that prayer, she is invoked as the compassionate one:

“Beneath the shelter of your tender compassion we fly for refuge, Mother of God.
Do not overlook our supplications in adversity but deliver us out of danger”

This prayer makes clear, a vivid faith in Mary’s consoling role.

To our Lord and our God, Jesus Christ, we pray for a greater love of His Mother and to our Blessed Mother, Our Lady of Consolation, we lift our prayers for patience, for support and for comfort in our times of confusion, fear and anxiety.   Pray for us, Our Lady of Consolation!

“The Church calls Mary the “Queen of Mercy”
because we believe she opens the abyss of God’s mercy
to whomever she wills, when she wills and as she wills.
No sinner — no matter how great —
who has Mary as protector, is ever lost.”

St Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153) – Doctor of the Church

the church calls mary the queen of mercy - st bernard - 4 sept 2018

Prayer to Our Lady of Consolation

O Mary Immaculate, our Mother and Consolation,
I take refuge in your most loving heart
with all the confidence of which I am capable;
you shall be the dearest object
of my love and veneration.
To you, who are the dispenser
of the treasures of Heaven,
I shall always have recourse,
in my sorrows to have peace,
in my doubts to have light,
in my dangers to be defended,
in all my needs to obtain your assistance.
Be therefore my refuge,
my strength,
my consolation, O Mary the Consoler!
At the hour of my death,
graciously receive the last sighs of my heart
and obtain for me a place in your heavenly home,
where all hearts shall praise with one accord
the adorable Heart of Jesus forevermore,
and your most lovable heart, O Mary.
Our tender Mother, Comforter of the afflicted,
pray for us who have recourse to thee.
Grant also peace and holiness to the Church,
through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord.
Amenprayer top our lady of consolation - 4 september 2018

Mary, our Consolation and our Comforter, Pray for us!

Pope Benedict on Our Lady of Consolation here: https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/09/04/thought-for-the-day-4-september-the-feast-of-our-lady-of-consolation/mary-our-consolation-pray-for-us- 4 sept 2017

 

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Thought for the Day – 2 September – Today’s Gospel: Mark 7:1–23

Thought for the Day – 2 September – Today’s Gospel: Mark 7:1–23 – Twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

‘This people honours me with their lips but their heart is far from me…”…Mark 7:6

“The interior life is primordial… The active life is the consequence of the interior life and has no value unless it depends upon it.   We should like to do everything to the best of our ability, perfectly.   But if it isn’t linked to our interior life it is to no purpose.   All the value of our life and activity stems from our interior life, the life of love for God and the Virgin Mary, the Immaculata – not in theories or sweetness but in the practice of a love that consists in the union of our will with the will of the Immaculate Virgin.

Above and over all we must deepen this interior life.   If it is truly a case of spiritual life then supernatural means are required.   Prayer, prayer and prayer alone is what is needed to undertake the interior life and its flowering. Interior recollection is necessary.

Let us not be anxious about unnecessary things but gently, peacefully, let us try to preserve recollection of spirit and be attentive to God’s grace.   That is why silence helps us.”…St Maximilian Kolbe (1894-1941) Martyrprayer prayer and prayer alone - st maximillian kolbe - 2 sept 2018

“You must, so to speak, tear off your own skin, which Saint Paul calls the old man, in order to be clothed with the Spirit of Jesus Christ, which is, according to the same Apostle, the new man.”

.St Francis de Sales (1567-1622) Doctor of the Churchyou must so to speak tear off your own skin - st francis de sales - 2 sept 2018

“So let me ask you – are there moments when you place yourself quietly in the Lord’s presence, when you calmly spend time with Him, when you bask in His gaze?   Do you let His fire inflame your heart?   Unless you let Him warm you more and more with His love and tenderness, you will not catch fire.   How will you then be able to set the hearts of others on fire by your words and witness?

Pope Francis Gaudete et Exscultateso let me ask you - pope francis - gaudete et exscultate - 2 sept 2018

And you Immaculata, who are our example, who are our constant intercessor, pray for us!immaculate mary pray for us - 2 sept 2018

Posted in CATHOLIC DEVOTIONS of the Month, DOCTORS of the Church, MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN TITLES, MORNING Prayers, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Devotion for September: The Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Devotion for September:
The Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Seven Sorrows of
the Blessed Virgin Mary

1. The prophecy of Simeon
2. The Flight to Egypt
3. Loss of Child Jesus for 3 days
4. Meeting Jesus carrying His Cross
5. The Crucifixion of Jesus
6. The Pieta – receiving Jesus’ Body
7. The Burial of Jesus

Each month of the liturgical year is devoted to a particular Catholic tradition, usually centered on a Feast during that month. As August is the Month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, September follows as the Month of Our Lady of Sorrows.
We see this theme of joy followed by affliction mirrored in the liturgical calendar in two September Feasts – the Exaltation of the Holy Cross on September 14 and the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows on 15 September. Happy the heart of the blessed Virgin Mary! She, without dying, earned the treasure of martyrdom beneath the Cross of our Lord for her anguish.
The name of Our Lady of Sorrows centres on the extraordinary and bittersweet suffering the Blessed Mother experienced during Christ’s Passion. As seen in the artwork below, her agony is composed of “The Seven Dolors,” that pierced the Heart of Mary.
During this month of September, we are drawn into the spiritual martyrdom that the Blessed Mother experienced during the physical martyrdom of Jesus. The evils of sin are manifest but conquered through intense suffering. The Blessed Mother’s tears of anguish reflect God’s washing away of sin. If you haven’t ever prayed the Seven Sorrows chaplet, you might want to consider exploring this devotion.

Prayer to our Lady of Sorrows
By St Bonaventure (1217-1274) Doctor of the Church

O most holy Virgin,
Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ,
by the overwhelming grief you experienced
when you witnessed the martyrdom,
the crucifixion
and the death, of your divine Son,
look upon me with eyes of compassion
and awaken in my heart a tender
commiseration for those sufferings,
as well as a sincere detestation
of my sins, in order that,
being disengaged from all undue affection
for the passing joys of this earth,
I may sigh after the eternal Jerusalem
and that henceforward all my thoughts
and all my actions may be directed
towards this one most desirable object,
the honour, glory and love
to our divine Lord Jesus,
and to the you,
the Holy and Immaculate
Mother of God.
Amenprayer to our lady of sorrows - st bonaventure - 1 sept 2018

Holy Mother, imprint deeply upon our hearts

the wounds of the Crucified Christ.sept month of the seven sorrows - 1 sept 2018

Posted in MARIAN PRAYERS, MORNING Prayers, PAPAL HOMILIES, Pope BENEDICT XVI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 30 August – The Memorial of St Jeanne Jugan L.S.P. (Mary of the Cross) (1792 – 1879)

Thought for the Day – 30 August – The Memorial of St Jeanne Jugan L.S.P. (Mary of the Cross) (1792 – 1879)

By her admirable work at the service of the most deprived elderly, St Mary of the Cross is also like a beacon to guide our societies which must always rediscover the place and the unique contribution of this period of life.
Born in 1792 at Cancale in Brittany, Jeanne Jugan was concerned with the dignity of her brothers and sisters in humanity whom age had made more vulnerable, recognising in them the Person of Christ himself.   “Look upon the poor with compassion”, she would say, “and Jesus will look kindly upon you on your last day”.
Jeanne Jugan focused upon the elderly a compassionate gaze drawn from her profound communion with God in her joyful, disinterested service, which she carried out with gentleness and humility of heart, desiring herself to be poor among the poor.   Jeanne lived the mystery of love, peacefully accepting obscurity and self-emptying until her death.   Her charism is ever timely while so many elderly people are suffering from numerous forms of poverty and solitude and are sometimes also abandoned by their families.
In the Beatitudes Jeanne Jugan found the source of the spirit of hospitality and fraternal love, founded on unlimited trust in Providence, which illuminated her whole life.  This evangelical dynamism is continued today across the world in the Congregation of Little Sisters of the Poor, which she founded and which testifies, after her example, to the mercy of God and the compassionate love of the Heart of Jesus for the lowliest.
May St Jeanne Jugan be for elderly people a living source of hope and for those who generously commit themselves to serving them, a powerful incentive to pursue and develop her work!

I would like to address to all the invitation to let yourselves be attracted by the luminous examples of these Saints, to let yourselves be guided by their teaching so that our entire life may become a song of praise to God’s love.   May their heavenly intercession obtain for us this grace and, especially, the motherly protection of Mary, Queen and Mother of humanity. Amen

Pope Benedict XVI – Homily at the Canonisation of St Mary of the Cross/Jeanne Jugan – Vatican Basilica Sunday, 11 October 2009

Once after meeting Jeanne Jugan, Charles Dickens said, “there is in this woman something so calm and so holy, that in seeing her I know myself to be in the presence of a superior being.

Her words went straight to my heart, so that my eyes, I know not how, filled with tears.”

St Mary of the Cross, Pray for us!st mary of the cross - jeanne jugan - pray for us - 30 aug 2018

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Thought for the Day – 26 August – The Feat of Our Lady of Czestochowa, Queen of Poland

Thought for the Day – 26 August – The Feat of Our Lady of Czestochowa, Queen of Poland

PRAYER OF JOHN PAUL II (Excerpt)

Czestochowa — 4 June 1997

“O Mother of God, O Blessed Virgin, by God have you been glorified!”

Mother of Jasna Góra and Queen, I come to you today on a pilgrimage of faith to thank you for your ceaseless protection of all the Church and of myself, especially during the fifty years of my priesthood and those of my service in the See of Peter.   With great trust I come to this holy place — on the hill of Jasna Góra, so dear to my heart, to cry out once more:  Mother of God and our Mother, I thank you for being the guiding Star of the building of a better future for the world, for being the Patroness of the attainment of the civilisation of love among the members of the human race.   Mother, I humbly beseech you, surround with your maternal protection the days and years which still separate us from the Year 2000. I entrust to your intercession the preparation for the Great Jubilee of Christianity.   Help all the nations of the world to begin the new millennium in union with Christ, the King of the ages.

Mother of the Church, Blessed Virgin Help of Christians, in the humility of Peter’s faith I bring to your feet the whole Church, all the continents, countries and nations which have believed in Jesus Christ and have recognised in Him the signpost marking their path through history.   I bring here, O Mother, all humanity, including those still searching for the way to Christ.   Be their guide and help them to be open to the God who is coming.   I bring to you in prayer the peoples of East and West, of North and South and I entrust to your motherly care all the families of nations.   Mother of the Church’s faith, just as you persevered in prayer with Jesus’ disciples in the Upper Room, so be with us today in the Upper Room of the Church as she travels towards the third millennium of faith and obtain for us the grace to be open to the gift of God’s Spirit.

Faithful Daughter of the Eternal Father , Temple of the Love that embraces heaven and earth, I entrust to you the service of the Church in the world, a world which so needs love. Mother of God, Mother of the only-begotten Son who gave us as the principle of life the new commandment of love, help us to become builders of a united world, in which peace triumphs over war, and the civilization of death is replaced by love for life.

Mother of Unity and Peace, strengthen the bond of communion within the Church of your Son, enliven ecumenical efforts so that all Christians, by the power of the Holy Spirit, may become one family of sisters and brothers of Jesus Christ, the one Saviour of the world yesterday, today and for ever (cf. Heb. 13:8).

O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary, accept our trust, strengthen it in our hearts and present it before the face of the one God in the Holy Trinity. Amen.

Our Lady of Czestochowa, Pray for us!our-lady-of-czestochowa-pray-for-us-26 aug 2017

Consecration to Our Lady of Czestochowa

Our Lady of Czestochowa,
Queen of Poland, pray for us.
Holy Mother of Czestochowa,
you are full of grace, goodness and mercy.
I consecrated to you all my thoughts,
words and actions – my soul and body.
I beseech your blessings
and especially prayers for my salvation.
Today I consecrate myself to you, good Mother, totally –
with body and soul amid joy and sufferings,
to obtain for myself and others,
your blessings on this earth
and eternal life in heaven.
Amenprayer-to-our-lady-of-czestochowa-26 aug 2017

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN TITLES, MORNING Prayers, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS to the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Thought for the Day – 22 August – The Memorial of The Queenship of Mary, Holy Mother of God

Thought for the Day – 22 August – The Memorial of The Queenship of Mary, Holy Mother of God – Today’s Gospel: Luke 1:26–38

As St Paul suggests in Romans 8:28–30, God has predestined human beings from all eternity to share the image of his Son.   All the more was Mary predestined to be the mother of Jesus.   As Jesus was to be king of all creation, Mary, in dependence on Jesus, was to be queen.   All other titles to queenship derive from this eternal intention of God. As Jesus exercised his kingship on earth by serving his Father and his fellow human beings, so did Mary exercise her queenship.   As the glorified Jesus remains with us as our king till the end of time (Matthew 28:20), so does Mary, who was assumed into heaven and crowned queen of heaven and earth.
In the fourth century St Ephrem called Mary “Lady” and “Queen.”   Later Church fathers and doctors continued to use the title.   Hymns of the 11th to 13th centuries address Mary as queen: “Hail, Holy Queen,” “Hail, Queen of Heaven,” “Queen of Heaven.”   The Dominican rosary and the Franciscan crown as well as numerous invocations in Mary’s litany celebrate her queenship.
The feast is a logical follow-up to the Assumption and is now celebrated on the octave day of that feast.   In his 1954 encyclical To the Queen of Heaven, Pius XII points out that Mary deserves the title because she is Mother of God because she is closely associated as the New Eve with Jesus’ redemptive work because of her preeminent perfection and because of her intercessory power. (Fr Don Miller OFM)
“Just as Mary surpassed in grace all others on earth, so also in heaven is her glory unique.   If eye has not seen or ear heard or the human heart conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him (1 Corinthians 2:9), who can express what He has prepared for the woman who gave Him birth and who loved Him, as everyone knows, more than anyone else?” (St Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153) – Doctor of Light – Mellifluous Doctor)just-as-mary-surpassed-in-grace-st-bernard-22 aug 2017

Mary Queen of Heaven and Earth,

Pray for your children!mary-our-queen-our-mother-pray-for-us - 22 aug 2017

Your eyes opened to a new kind of light
Wide pools that gaze with merciful love upon the world
Your sword-pierced heart, immaculate,
Strong-walled as a cathedral
In the holy city of God.

Angels surround your throne
Holy Blessed Virgin,
Mother of God
Star-crowned Queen of heaven and
Queen of angels

We, though sinners, are yours,
Every tribe on earth, every race
Beckoned to enclosure
In deep mantle-folds of grace.your-eyes-opened-to-a-new-kind-of-light-queenship-of-mary-poem-22 aug 2017

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FRANCISCAN, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN TITLES, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Our Morning Offering – 22 August – Memorial of The Queenship of Mary

Our Morning Offering – 22 August – Memorial of The Queenship of Mary

Mary our Queen, Holy Mother of God
By St Anthony of Padua (1195-1231) Evangelical Doctor

Mary, our Queen,
Holy Mother of God,
we beg you to hear our prayer.
Make our hearts overflow with divine grace
and resplendent with heavenly wisdom.
Render them strong with your might
and rich in virtue.
Pour down upon us the gift of mercy
so that we may obtain the pardon of our sins.
Help us to live in such a way
as to merit the glory and bliss of heaven.
May this be granted us by your Son Jesus
who has exalted you above the angels,
has crowned you as Queen,
and has seated you with Him
forever on His refulgent throne.
Amen.mary-our-queen-holy-mother-of-god-by-st-anthony-of-padua-22 aug 2017.2