Posted in MORNING Prayers, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, Uncategorized

Our Morning Offering – 25 June

Our Morning Offering – 25 June

Morning Offering of St Edmund

Into Your Hands, O Lord
and into the hands of Your holy Angels,
I commit and entrust this day my soul,
my relations, my benefactors,
my friends and enemies
and all Your Catholic people.
Keep us, O Lord, through the day,
by the merits and intercession
of the Blessed Virgin Mary
and of all Your Saints,
from all vicious and unruly desires,
from all sins and temptations of the devil
and from sudden and unprovided death
and the pains of hell.
Illuminate my heart with the grace of Your Holy Spirit,
grant that I may ever be obedient
to Your commandments,
suffer me not to be separated from You, O God,
who lives and reigns with God the Father
and the same Holy Spirit for ever and ever.
Amen

 

morning offering of st edmund martyr - and king

Posted in SAINT of the DAY, Uncategorized

Saint of the day – 25 June – St William of Vercelli

Saint of the day – 25 June – St William of Vercelli OSB (1085 at Vercelli, Italy – 25 June 1142 at Guglietto, Italy of natural causes)  Hermit, Abbot, Founder of the Congregation of Monte Vergine, or “Williamites”, miracle-worker, Marian devotee.   Also known as William of Monte Vergine.   Patron of Irpinia, Italy.   Attributes –  pilgrim, usually near Santiago de Compostela, Spain, abbot near a wolf wearing a saddle, receiving an appearance by Christ, saddling a wolf that killed his donkey, wolf.   His Body is incorrupt. The Statue below is at St Peter’s Basilica, The Vatican.

 

St William was born to nobility in Vercelli, Italy, William was orphaned at a young age when both his parents were killed.   Subsequently raised by a pious family member, William matured into a contemplative young man with only one desire—to devote his life to the Lord.   At the young age of 15, William left home, setting out on pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, Spain.   As the journey was not difficult enough for him, he encircled his legs with tight iron bands, causing pain and making walking difficult, his suffering bringing him closer to God.   Upon arrival, he worked some miracles including the healing of a blind man through prayer and subsequently felt called to journey to the Holy Land. However, soon after departing, he was set upon by thieves and following that encounter, felt the Will of God calling him to Italy.

6_25_william2

Saint William retired to Monte Vergiliano (today known as Monte Vergine, named for Our Blessed Mother) and became a hermit.   There, he spent his days in prayer, fasting, and contemplation of the Lord.   Especially devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary, he began construction of a church in her honour, mining the rocks from the mountain by hand with the assistance of a lone donkey.   As holy legend tells us, one evening, the donkey was killed and eaten by a wolf.   Saint William called the wolf to him, ordering it to take the donkey’s place.   The wolf, bowing in respect and realizing that it had interrupted the work of God, immediately took up the task of dragging rocks from the quarry.   The faithful who continue to travel on pilgrimage to Monte Vergine report that the wolf is still spotted today, visible to those who call upon the name of the Blessed Virgin.

ST WILLIAM OF VERCELLI

Eventually, due to his working of more miraculous cures (none of which he sought credit for), the faithful began seeking William out on his mountain.   His reputation for holiness attracted many disciples, both men and women, and he founded the Order of Mount Vergine—a religious community with strict rules of austerity.   William and the nuns and monks of his order lived in peace and contemplation for some time, until the members of the order began complaining that William’s rules of poverty, fasting and penance were too extreme.   There is evidence of heavenly support for the austerities of William’s rule. For example, William did not permit the order to eat meat, eggs, milk, or cheese.   If someone tried to violate this regulation, storm clouds would appear in the sky and the lightning would destroy the illicit foodstuff that had been brought into the monastery.

With the members of the Order growing more disgruntled, William humbly removed himself from the situation to remove controversy and ensure the future of the order.  He travelled to Naples, where he served as advisor to the King Roger I and established several more monasteries.

Saint William died of natural causes at the Guglielmo monastery near Nusco, Italy, where he was buried.   Church tradition holds that William predicted the date and time of his death and went to meet his Maker with peace and joy.   At the time of his death, he had not yet written a Rule for his religious to govern their affairs.   His successor, fearing the dissolution of a community without constitutions, placed them under the Rule of Saint Benedict.   The community, which continues to exist today, now belongs to the Benedictine congregation of Subiaco and has a much venerated picture of our Lady of Constantinople, to which pilgrimages are frequently made by the faithful.   While Benedictine monks generally wear black robes, the monks who reside at Monte Vergine today continue to wear the white robes of the Williamites.

williamofvercelliSaint_William079_Abbot_William6_25_St _William_and_the _Wolf

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MORNING Prayers, Pope BENEDICT XVI, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHERr and all PRIESTS, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, Uncategorized

Wishing all Fathers a Blessed and Happy Father’s Day especially all our universal Fathers – our Priests!

Wishing all Fathers a Blessed and Happy Father’s Day
especially all our universal Fathers – our Priests!

Prayer for Priests by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

PRAYER FOR PRIESTS-BENEDICT

Lord Jesus Christ, eternal High Priest,
You offered Yourself to the Father
on the altar of the Cross
and through the outpouring of the Holy Spirit
gave Your priestly people a share in Your redeeming sacrifice.
Hear our prayer for the sanctification of our priests.
Grant that all who are ordained to the ministerial priesthood
may be ever more conformed to You, the divine Master.
May they preach the Gospel with pure heart and clear conscience.
Let them be shepherds according to Your own Heart,
single- minded in service to You and to the Church
and shining examples of a holy, simple and joyful life.
Through the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Your Mother and ours, draw all priests
and the flocks entrusted to their care to the fullness
of eternal life where You live and reign with the Father
and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen

“The Priest must be, first and foremost,
an Adorer who contemplates the Eucharist.”

the priest must be first an adorer - papa b

 

Posted in Uncategorized, SAINT of the DAY, CATHOLIC DEVOTIONS of the Month, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SACRED and IMMACULATE HEARTS

Saint of the Day – 16 June – St Lutgarde of Aywières –The first known woman stigmatic of the Church and one of the first promoters of devotion to the Sacred Heart

Saint of the Day – 16 June – St Lutgarde of Aywières –The first known woman stigmatic of the Church and one of the first promoters of devotion to the Sacred Heart – Religious, Mystric, Miracle-Worker, Stimatist, Visionary (1182 at Tongres, Limburg, Belgium – 16 June 1246 at Aywieres (modern Awirs), Belgium of natural causes, just as night office began on the Saturday night following Feast of the Holy Trinity)   Her relics were transferred to Ittre, Belgium on 4 December 1796 to avoid destruction in the French Revolution.   Patronages – birth, childbirth, blind people, againts blindness, disabled, handicapped of physically challenged people, Belgium, Flanders, Belgium.   Attributes – • woman with Christ showing her His wounded side, blind Cistercian abbess, Cistercian nun being blinded by the Heart of Jesus, Cistercian to whom Christ extends his hand from the cross, woman in attendance when Christ shows his Heart to the Father

St Lutgarde 5

When Lutgarde was twelve, her parents placed her in the care of the Benedictine sisters at St. Catherine’s monastery near Liège, Belgium.   The convent allowed visitors and young men came to court the beautiful young woman.   Once when an ardent fellow and Lutgarde were talking, Christ appeared to her.   Opening His garment, Christ showed Lutgarde the wound in His side bleeding as if recently opened and He said to her, “Do not seek any longer the caresses of unseemly love. Contemplate here what you should love and why you should love it. Here, I pledge to you are the delights of total purity, which will follow it.”   When the confused young man tried to resume their conversation, Lutgarde chased him off. “Get away from me, you fodder of death,” she said, “for I have been overtaken by another lover.”

St. Lutgarde made unusually rapid progress in the spiritual life.   She opened herself fully to Christ in prayer and He favoured her with an intimate experience of His presence.   He gave her gifts of healing and of understanding the convent’s Latin prayers.   But she asked him to take them back because both kept her from focusing on loving Him.   Then the Lord said to her, “What do You want?” “I want Your heart,” she said.   “No, rather it is Your heart that I want,” replied the Lord. “So be it, Lord,” said Lutgarde, “so long as Your heart’s love is mingled with mine and I have and hold my heart in You.   For with You as my shield, my heart is secure for all time.”

SANTA LUTGARD - Santa_Lutgarda-Goya

St Lutgarde spent nine years in St. Catherine’s convent and she was elected to be Superioress of the community there.   The year was 1205, when the saint was twenty-three years old.  Far from being flattered or pleased by her elevation to this dignity, Lutgarde regarded it as a disaster.   Indeed, it seems to have moved her to look elsewhere and to seek some other Order.   She thought St. Catherine’s could provide her with sufficient opportunities for living as a contemplative as long as she was an obscure member of the community but not when she took her place at its head.  While taking up her role as Superior, it was natural that her thoughts should turn to the austere Cistercian nuns, commonly known as Trappists, who had by this time, many flourishing convents in the Low Countries.

She asked the advice of a learned preacher of Liege, Jean de Lierre, who urged her to give up her post as prioress and leave the Benedictine Order for the Cistercian convent of Aywieres, (Awirs) which had recently been founded near Liege but had been transferred to a site in Brabant, near the village of Lillois.   She was very reluctant to accept this particular choice because French was spoken in Brabant and she felt it would be unwise to enter a convent where she would not understand the language of her superiors or spiritual directors.   Meanwhile, Christ Himself intervened and spoke the following words to her:  “It is My will that you go to Aywieres, and if you do not go, I will have nothing more to do with you.”
As if this were not enough, Lutgarde was also admonished by a saintly friend, who has since been venerated as St. Christine “the Admirable” who told her to go to Aywieres and so with no further possibility of doubt as to the convent of the Cistercian Order to which she was called, Lutgarde left St. Catherine’s without consulting her community and went to Aywieres.

When the nuns of St. Catherine’s discovered their loss, they were inconsolable, but it was too late to do anything about it. Lutgarde, in her turn, prayed earnestly for the peace of the community she had left and was assured by the Blessed Virgin that her prayers would be answered.   Indeed, Thomas of Cantimpre ends the first book of his life of St. Lutgarde with the comment:  “The indubitable effect of these prayers is to be seen even today [some fifty years later] in the community of St. Catherine’s. For this particular convent continues to grow in fervour more than ever, and to increase, at the same time, in temporal prosperity.”

17lutgardis

Three times she fasted for periods of seven years, subsisting only on bread and liquids. The saint dedicated each fast for the Lord’s purposes:  once for Lutgarde of Aywières the conversion of heretics, a second time for the salvation of sinners and a final time for Emperor Frederick II, who was threatening the church.   Before her death she prophesied the latter’s demise, which occurred in 1250.

St Lutgardis is considered one of the leading mystics of the 13th century.[   A life of Lutgardis, Vita Lutgardis, was composed less than two years after her death by Thomas of Cantimpre, a Dominican friar and a theologian of some ability.  Lutgardis was venerated at Aywières for centuries and her relics were exhumed in the 16th century.   Works of art depicting the saint include a baroque statue of Lutgardis on the Charles Bridge by Matthias Braun in Prague and a painting by Goya.

Thomas Merton, in his biography of the Saint, reports that she had a particular devotion to St. Agnes, the Roman virgin martyr.   She was one day praying to St. Agnes when “suddenly a vein near her heart burst, and through a wide open wound in her side, blood began to pour forth, soaking her robe and cowl.”    She then sank to the floor and “lost her senses.”   She was never known to have been wounded in this way again but it is known that she kept the scar until the end of her life.   This took place when she was twenty-nine years old.   Witnesses to this event were two nuns, one named Margaret, the other Lutgarde of Limmos, who washed the Saint’s clothes.

Thomas Merton also tells that on many occasions, this saintly Cistercian, in meditating on Christ’s Passion, would fall into ecstasy and sweat blood.   A priest who had heard of this sweat of blood watched for an opportunity to witness it himself.   One day he found her in ecstasy, leaning against a wall, her face and hands dripping with blood.   Finding a pair of scissors, he managed to snip off a lock of the Saint’s hair which was wet with blood (he did so thinking to have proof of the event and also to have the lock of hair as a relic)   As he stood marveling at the blood on the lock of hair, the Saint suddenly came to herself.  Instantly the blood vanished; not only from her face and hands but also from the lock in his hands and also the blood that was on his hands!   Thomas Merton writes “At this, the priest was so taken aback that he nearly collapsed from astonishment.”

St. Lutgarde spent four decades at Aywières entirely devoted to the heart of Christ.   Five years before her death, that is, in 1241, St. Lutgarde received the revelation that she would enter heaven on the third Sunday after Pentecost, when the Gospel of the Great Marriage Feast would be sung.   She died in 1246.

St Lutgarde 8St Lutgarde chair06-16-1246-lutgardis_2

Read further about St Lutgarde here : http://www.mysticsofthechurch.com/2015/09/st-lutgarde-of-aywieres-first-known.html

Posted in MORNING Prayers, NOVENAS, SACRED and IMMACULATE HEARTS, Uncategorized

NOVENA in honour of the SACRED HEART of JESUS – DAY TWO – 15 JUNE

NOVENA in honour of the SACRED HEART of JESUS – DAY TWO – 15 JUNE

By St Alphonsus Liguori
(1696-1787) Most Zealous Doctor
Published in 1758 from THE HOLY EUCHARIST

MEDITATION II.
The Loving Heart of Jesus.

Oh, if we could but understand the love that burns in the heart of Jesus for us!   He has loved us so much, that if all men, all the Angels and all the Saints were to unite, with all their energies, they could not arrive at the thousandth part of the love that Jesus bears to us.   He loves us infinitely more than we love ourselves,   He has loved us even to excess: They spoke of His decease (excess) which He was to accomplish in Jerusalem. [Luke ix. 31]  And what greater excess of love could there be than for God to die for His creatures? He has loved us to the greatest degree:  Having loved His own . . . He loved them unto the end;  [John, xiii. 1] since, after having loved us from eternity, —–for there never was a moment from eternity when God did not think of us and did not love each one-of us:  I have loved thee with an everlasting love, [Jer. xxxi, 3]—–for the love of us.   He made Himself Man and chose a life of sufferings and the death of the Cross for our sake. Therefore He has loved us more than His honur, more than His repose and more than His life; for He sacrificed everything to show us the love that He bears us.   And is not this an excess of love sufficient to stupefy with astonishment the Angels of Paradise for all eternity?

This love has induced Him also to remain with us in the Holy Sacrament as on a throne of love;  for He remains there under the appearance of a small piece of bread, shut up in a ciborium, where He seems to remain in a perfect annihilation of His majesty, without movement and without the use of His senses;  so that it seems that He performs no other office there than that of loving men.   Love makes us desire the constant presence of the object of our love.   It is this love and this desire that makes Jesus Christ reside with us in the Most Holy Sacrament.   It seemed too short a time to this loving Saviour to have been only thirty-three years with men on earth;  therefore, in order to show His desire of being constantly with us, He thought right to perform the greatest of all miracles, in the institution of the Holy Eucharist.   But the work of redemption was already completed, men had already become reconciled to God;  for what purpose, then, did Jesus remain on earth in this Sacrament?   Ah, He remains there because He cannot bear to separate Himself from us, as He has said that He takes a delight in us.

Again, this love has induced Him even to become the food of our souls, so as to unite Himself to us and to make His heart and ours as one: He that eateth My Flesh and drinketh My Blood, abideth in Me and I in him. [John, vi. 57] O
wonder!   O excess of Divine love!   It was said by a servant of God, if anything could shake my faith in the Eucharist, it would not be the doubt as to how the bread could become flesh, or how Jesus could be in several places and confined into so small a space, because I should answer that God can do everything;   but if I were asked how He could love men so much as to make Himself their food, I have nothing else to answer but that this is a mystery of faith above my comprehension and that the love of Jesus cannot be understood.   O love of Jesus, do Thou make Thyself known to men and do Thou make Thyself loved!

DAY TWO - 15 JUNE

LET US PRAY – DAY TWO

O adorable heart of my Jesus, heart inflamed with the love of men,
heart created on purpose to love them,
how is it possible that You can be despised
and Your love so ill corresponded to by men?
Oh, miserable that I am, I also have been one of those ungrateful ones
that have not loved You.
Forgive me, my Jesus, this great sin of not having loved You,
Who are so amiable and Who has loved me so much
that You can do nothing more to oblige me to love You.
Grant me the grace to love You.
O Love of my Jesus; You are my Love.
O burning heart of my Jesus, inflame my heart also.
Do not permit me in future, even for a single moment,
to live without Your love; rather kill me, destroy me;
do not let the world behold the spectacle of such horrid ingratitude
as that I, who have been so beloved by You
and received so many favours and lights from You,
should begin again to despise Your love.
I trust in the Blood that You have shed for me,
that I shall always love You and that You will always love me
and that this love between You and me will not be broken off for all eternity.

O Mary, Mother of fair love,
you who desires so much to see Jesus loved,
bind me, unite me to your Son;
but bind me to Him, so that we may never again be separated. Amen

Posted in MORNING Prayers, NOVENAS, Uncategorized

ST ANTHONY OF PADUA NOVENA for all our Needs – DAY NINE – 12 JUNE

ST ANTHONY OF PADUA NOVENA for all our Needs – DAY NINE – 12 JUNE

DAY NINE - ST ANTHONY OF PADUA NOVENA

DAY NINE

Saint Anthony, servant of Mary,
glory of the Church,
pray for our Holy Father, our bishops, our priests, our Religious Orders,
that, through their pious zeal and apostolic labours,
all may be united in faith
and give greater glory to God.
St. Anthony, helper of all who invoke you,
pray for me and intercede for me before the throne of Almighty God
that I be granted the favour I so earnestly seek in this novena
(State your intention).

One Our Father, one Hail Mary and Glory Be to the Father, in honour of Saint Anthony.

Saint Anthony, pray for us!

May the divine assistance remain always with us.
Amen
May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.
Amen.
O God, may the votive commemoration of blessed Anthony,
Your confessor, be a source of joy to Your Church,
that she may always be fortified with spiritual assistance
and deserve to enjoy eternal rewards.
Through Jesus Christ our Lord, in union with the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Posted in MORNING Prayers, NOVENAS, Uncategorized

St ANTHONY of PADUA NOVENA for all our Needs – DAY EIGHT – 11 June

St ANTHONY of PADUA NOVENA for all our Needs – DAY EIGHT – 11 June

day eight-novena st anthony

DAY EIGHT

O holy St. Anthony,
you have shown yourself so powerful in your intercession,
so tender and so compassionate towards those who honour you
and invoke you in suffering and distress.
I beseech you most humbly and earnestly
to take me under your protection in my present necessities
and to obtain for me the favour I desire
(State your intention).
Recommend my request to the merciful Queen of Heaven,
that she may plead my cause with you
before the throne of her Divine Son.

One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honour of Saint Anthony.

Saint Anthony, pray for us!