<$BlogRSDUrl$>

Sunday, March 01, 2015

Second Sunday Of Lent



Station Church:
S. Maria in Domenica alla Navicella







From The Passion And Death of Jesus Christ, by Saint Alphonsus de Liguori:

O my Lord, I do indeed know how much Thou hast done and suffered for my sake. But Thou knowest, alas, that I have hitherto done nothing for Thee. My Jesus, help me to suffer something for Thy love before death overtakes me! I am ashamed of appearing before Thee, but I will no longer be ungrateful, as I have been so many years towards Thee. Thou hast deprived Thyself of every pleasure for me. I will for Thee renounce all the pleasures of the senses. Thou hast suffered so many pains for me, I will, for Thy sake, suffer all of the pains of my life and my death, as it shall best please Thee. Thou hast been forsaken: I will be content that all should forsake me, provided Thou dost not forsake me, O my only and sovereign good. Thou hast been persecuted. I accept whatever persecution may befall me. Finally, Thou hast died for me. I will die for Thee. O my Jesus, my Treasure, my Love, my All, I love Thee. O give me more love.
Amen.

Devotions For a Lenten Sunday Holy Hour
Divine Mercy Chaplet
Seven Penitential Psalms
Prayer of St. Thomas More
Psalter of St. Jerome
Threnus Prayer of St. Augustine


From The Liturgical Year, by Abbot Prosper Gueranger, OSB:

THE subject offered to our consideration, on this second Sunday, is one of the utmost importance for the holy season. The Church applies to us the lesson which our Saviour gave to three of His apostles. Let us endeavour to be more attentive to it than they were.

Jesus was about to pass from Galilee into Judea, that He might go up to Jerusalem and be present at the feast of the Pasch. It was that last Pasch, which was to begin with the immolation of the figurative lamb, and end with the sacrifice of the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world. Jesus would have His disciples know Him. His works had borne testimony to Him, even before those who were, in a manner, strangers to Him; but as for His disciples, had they not every reason to be faithful to Him, even to death? Had they not listened to His words, which had such power with them that they forced conviction? Had they not experienced His love, which it was impossible to resist? And had they not seen how patiently He had borne with their strange and untoward ways? Yes, they must have known Him. They had heard one of their company, Peter, declare that He was the Christ, the Son of the living God. [St. Matt. xvi. 16.] Notwithstanding this, the trial to which their faith was soon to be put was of such a terrible kind, that Jesus would mercifully arm them against temptation by an extraordinary grace.

The cross was to be a scandal and a stumbling-block [1 Cor. i. 23.] to the Synagogue, and alas! to more than it. Jesus said to His apostles at the last Supper: 'All of you shall be scandalized in Me this night.' [St. Matt. xxvi. 31.] Carnal-minded as they then were, what would they think when they should see Him seized by armed men, handcuffed, hurried from one tribunal to another, and doing nothing to defend Himself! And when they found that the high priests and pharisees, who had hitherto been so often foiled by the wisdom and miracles of Jesus, had now succeeded in their conspiracy against Him, what a shock to their confidence! But there was to be something more trying still: the people, who, but a few days before, greeted Him so enthusiastically with their Hosannas, would demand His execution; and He would have to die, between two thieves, on the cross, amidst the insults of His triumphant enemies.

Is it not to be feared that these disciples, when they witness His humiliations and sufferings, will lose their courage? They have lived in His company for three years; but when they see that the things He foretold would happen to Him are really fulfilled, will the remembrance of all they have seen and heard keep them loyal to Him? Or will they turn cowards and flee from Him? Jesus selects three out of the number, who are especially dear to Him: Peter, whom He has made the rock, on which His Church is to be built, and to whom He has promised the keys of the kingdom of heaven; James, the son of thunder, who is to be the first martyr of the apostolic college; and John, James's brother, and His own beloved disciple. Jesus has resolved to take them aside, and show them a glimpse of that glory, which, until the day fixed for its manifestation, He conceals from the eyes of mortals.

He therefore leaves the rest of His disciples in the plain near Nazareth, and goes in company with the three privileged ones towards a high hill called Thabor, which is a continuation of Libanus, and which the psalmist tells us was to rejoice in the name of the Lord. [Ps. lxxxviii. 13.] No sooner has He reached the summit of the mountain, than the three apostles observe a sudden change come over Him; His Face shines as the sun, and His humble garments become white as snow. They observe two venerable men approach and speak with Him upon what He is about to suffer in Jerusalem. One is Moses, the lawgiver; the other is Elias, the prophet, who was taken up from earth on a fiery chariot without having passed through the gates of death. These two great representatives of the Jewish religion, the Law and the Prophets, humbly adore Jesus of Nazareth. The three apostles are not only dazzled by the brightness which comes from their divine Master; but they are filled with such a rapture of delight, that they cannot bear the thought of leaving the place. Peter proposes to remain there for ever and build three tabernacles, for Jesus, Moses, and Elias. And while they are admiring the glorious sight, and gazing on the beauty of their Jesus' human Nature, a bright cloud overshadows them, and a voice is heard speaking to them: it is the voice of the eternal Father, proclaiming the Divinity of Jesus, and saying: 'This is My beloved Son!'

This transfiguration of the Son of Man, this manifestation of His glory, lasted but a few moments: His mission was not on Thabor; it was humiliation and suffering in Jerusalem. He therefore withdrew into Himself the brightness He had allowed to transpire; and when He came to the three apostles, who, on hearing the voice from the cloud, had fallen on their faces with fear, they could see no one save only Jesus. The bright cloud was gone; Moses and Elias had disappeared. What a favour they have had bestowed upon them! Will they remember what they have seen and heard? They have had such a revelation of the Divinity of their dear Master! Is it possible that, when the hour of trial comes, they will forget it, and doubt His being God? And when they see Him suffer and die, will they be ashamed of Him and deny Him? Alas! the Gospel has told us what happened to them.

A short time after this, our Lord celebrated His last Supper with His disciples. When the supper was over, He took them to another mount, Mount Olivet, which lies to the east of Jerusalem. Leaving the rest at the entrance of the garden, He advances with Peter, James, and John, and then says to them: 'My soul is sorrowful even unto death: stay you here and watch with Me.' [St. Matt. xxvi. 38.] He then retires some little distance from them, and prays to His eternal Father. The Heart of our Redeemer is weighed down with anguish. When He returns to His three disciples, He is enfeebled by the agony He has suffered, and His garments are saturated with Blood. The apostles are aware that He is sad even unto death, and that the hour is close at hand when He is to be attacked: are they keeping watch? are they ready to defend Him? No: they seem to have forgotten Him; they are fast asleep, for their eyes are heavy. [Ibid. 43.] Yet a few moments, and all will have fled from Him; and Peter, the bravest of them all, will be taking his oath that he never knew the Man.

After the Resurrection our three apostles made ample atonement for this cowardly and sinful conduct, and acknowledged the mercy wherewith Jesus had sought to fortify them against temptation, by showing them His glory on Thabor a few days before His Passion. Let us not wait till we have betrayed Him: let us at once acknowledge that He is our Lord and our God. We are soon to be keeping the anniversary of His Sacrifice; like the apostles, we are to see Him humbled by His enemies and bearing, in our stead, the chastisements of divine justice. We must not allow our faith to be weakened, when we behold the fulfilment of those prophecies of David and Isaias, that the Messias is to be treated as a worm of the earth, [Ps. xxi. 7.] and be covered with wounds, so as to become like a leper, the most abject of men, and the Man of sorrows. [Is. liii. 3. 4.] We must remember the grand things of Thabor, and the adorations paid Him by Moses and Elias, and the bright cloud, and the voice of the eternal Father. The more we see Him humbled, the more must we proclaim His glory and divinity; we, must join our acclamations with those of the angels and the four-and-twenty elders, whom St. John, one of the witnesses of the Transfiguration, heard crying out with a loud voice: 'The Lamb that was slain, is worthy to receive power and divinity, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and benediction!' [Apoc. v. 12.]

The second Sunday of Lent is called, from the first word of the Introit, Reminiscere; and also Transfiguration-Sunday, on account of the Gospel which is read in the Mass.

The Station at Rome is in the church of St. Mary in Dominica, on Monte Celio. Tradition tells us that in this basilica was the diaconicum of which St. Laurence had charge, and from which he distributed to the poor the alms of the Church

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Saturday In the Lenten Embertide



Station Church:
St. Peter in the Vatican

This is the last Ember Day until sometime in May! Though, as this is still only the start of Lent, there are many solemn days of penance still ahead. But for those weary of winter, keep in mind that there are no more Ember Days until the late Spring (almost Summer).

From The Passion and Death Of Jesus Christ, by Saint Alphonsus de Liguori:

O my dearest Jesus, my love, my life, my all, if I behold from without Thy sacred Body, I see nothing else but Wounds. But if I enter into Thy desolate Heart, I find nothing but bitterness and sorrows, which made Thee suffer the agonies of death. O my Lord, and Who but Thee , Who art infinite Goodness, would ever suffer so much, and die for one of Thy creatures? But because Thou art God, Thou dost love as God alone can love, with a love that cannot be equalled by any other love.

Devotions for a Lenten Saturday Holy Hour:

Divine Mercy Chaplet
Seven Penitential Psalms
Prayer of St. Thomas More
Threnus Prayer of Saint Augustine
Stabat Mater Dolorosa
Litany of Our Lady of Sorrows
Sorrowful Mysteries

Friday, February 27, 2015

Friday In the Lenten Embertide



Station Church:
Ss. XII Apostoli al Foro Traiano



From The Passion And Death Of Jesus Christ, by Saint Alphonsus de Liguori:

O my most loving Redeemer, what have I hitherto done or suffered for Thee? If I could for a thousand years endure for Thy sake all the torments that all the martyrs have suffered, they would yet be nothing compared with that one first moment in which Thou didst offer Thyself and begin to suffer for me.

Devotions for a Lenten Friday Holy Hour:
Dies Irae
Divine Mercy Chaplet
Seven Penitential Psalms
Prayer of St. Thomas More
Threnus Prayer of Saint Augustine
Devotions To the Holy Cross
Stations of the Cross

Again, it occurs to me that my simple notation, "Devotions To the Holy Cross" might be drawing a blank with Catholics my age and younger. These are the prayers I mean:

Ave Crux Sancta
HAIL, O holy Cross, our strength.
Hail, O adorable Cross, our praise and glory.
Hail, O Cross, our help and refuge.
Hail, O Cross, consolation of all the mournful.
Hail, O Cross, our victory and hope.
Hail, O Cross, our defense and our life.
Hail, O Cross, our liberation and redemption.
Hail, O Cross, our sign of salvation and bulwark against the enemy.
May the Cross be for me always hope of my faith.
May the Cross be for me resurrection in my death.
May the Cross be for me triumph against demons.
May the Cross be for me mother of my consolation.
May the Cross be for me rest in my tribulations.
May the Cross be for me support in my old age.
May the Cross be for me healing in my illness.
May the Cross be for me protection in my nudity.
May the Cross be for me consolation in my life.
May the Cross be for me solace in all my difficulties.
May the Cross be for me balm in my tribulations.
May the Cross be for me medicine to my infirmities and protection against all my enemies.
Amen.

Save Me, O Holy Cross
Save me, o holy Cross, who art consecrated with the body of Christ and ornamented as if by pearls from this union with his limbs; thou hast been made worthy to carry the price of our salvation and hast held up eternal life to us. O good Jesus, grant to me that through the reparation and mark of Thy holy Cross, Thou willst free me from the incursions of all my enemies, preserve me in Thy goodness, dismiss my sins, and grant me forgiveness: Thou who livest and reignest, God forever and ever.
Amen.

The Hours Of the Holy Cross
V. By the sign of the cross from our enemies.
R. Our God deliver us.
V. Thou O Lord wilt open my lips.
R. And my mouth shall declare Thy praise.
V. Incline unto my aid O God.
R. O Lord make haste to help me.
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
R. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be in the world of worlds.
Amen.
The wisdom of the Father, and truth divine beside,
God and man surprised was even at the morning tide:
His known disciples left Him for to follow more:
Sold and betrayed to the Jews they did afflict Him sore.
Ant: O venerable Cross, which hast brought salvation to wretches, by what praise shall I extol thee: for thou hast prepared unto us the heavenly life.
They our Lord to Pilate led at the hour of prime,
And by witnesses full false accused much of crime,
His hands tied they beat Him with fists in great dispite,
They upon God's face do spit the heaven's grateful light.
Ant: O victory of the Cross, and admirable sign, cause us to hold our triumph in the heavenly court.
At the third hour of the day they crucify Him cry,
In a purple robe clad Him more to mock thereby,
Piteously His head was pricked with the crown of thorn,
To the place of pain His cross was on His shoulders born.
Ant: The punishment of bloody death is condemned, whilst Christ upon the cross hath destroyed the bonds of our offenses.
To the Cross Christ nailed was the sixth hour of the day,
And there hanging with two thieves reputed was as they:
Thirsting by torments made with gall they seek to slake:
Mocked was the Lamb while He our guilt on Him did take.
Ant: By a tree we were made bondsmen, and by the Holy Cross we are set free: the fruit of the tree seduced us, the Son of God redeemed us.
Jesus Lord at the ninth hour His spirit forth did send:
Crying Eli and His soul to Father did commend:
With a lance a soldier did pierce through His tender side:
The earth then trembled and the sun His shining light did hide.
Ant: O great work of piety: Death then died when life was dead upon the cross.
At the hour of eventide Christ from His cross was ta'en,
In whose soul His fortitude did covertly remain.
Such a death vouchsafed to take of life the medicine sound:
Glory's crown alas the while lay groveling on the ground.
Ant: O Blessed Cross, which only wast worthy to bear the value of the world: sweet wood, sweet nails bearing sweet weights: thou only excedest in highness all the wood of Cedar: upon which the salvation of the world did hang: on which Christ did triumph, and death overcame death forever.
When as Compline was come was laid in His tomb,
Christ His body precious the hope of life to come.
Embalmed it was: scriptures thus accomplished we see:
Still this death to have in mind my care O let it be
Ant: Save us O Savior of the world, which by Thy cross and blood hast redeemed us, help us we beseech Thee O our God.
V. We adore Thee O Christ, and we praise Thee.
R. Because by Thy holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the world.
Let us pray:
O Lord Jesus Christ the Son of the living God, set Thy passion, cross, and death between Thy judgment and my soul, now, and in the hour of my death and vouchsafe to grant unto me grace and mercy: to the living and the dead rest and pardon: to Thy Church peace and concord, and to us sinners life and glory everlasting, who livest and reignest, God, with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Ghost, world without end.
Amen.

O Bona Crux
O good Cross, made beautiful by the body of the Lord, long have I desired thee, ardently have I loved thee, unceasingly have I sought thee, and now thou art ready for my eager soul. Receive me from among men and restore me to my Master, so that He, who redeemed me through thee, shalt receive me through thee.
Amen.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Thursday Of the First Week Of Lent




Station Church:
S. Lorenzo in Panisperna

Today is not an Ember Day (but yesterday, tomorrow, and Saturday are).



From The Passion And Death Of Jesus Christ, by Saint Alphonsus de Liguori:

My dearest Jesus, it does indeed afflict me to see Thee dying with such dreadful sufferings upon an ignominious tree. But at the same time, I am greatly consoled and inflamed with love for Thee, when I see, by means of these Wounds, the love that Thou bearest me. O heavenly seraphs, what do you think of the love of my God, who loved me and delivered himself for me?

Devotions For A Lenten Thursday Holy Hour:

Dies Irae
Divine Mercy Chaplet
Seven Penitential Psalms
Prayer of St. Thomas More
Threnus Prayer of Saint Augustine
Devotion To the Holy Face

Today is not an Ember Day, even though we are in the midst of the Lenten Embertide. Thursday is never counted as an Ember Day because of the Institution of the Most Blessed Sacrament on Maundy Thursday.

In listing devotions you might choose to make use of for every day of the week during Lent, I often use the shorthand for one, calling it simply "Threnus Prayer." It occurs to me that many people might not know what prayer I am referring to is. The Threnus Prayer of Saint Augustine I make a part of daily Lenten devotions. It is one of the most penitential, and one of the truest to human nature that I have encountered. Saint Augustine knew what he was talking about when he discussed human sinfulness. Michael W. Martin did the groundbreaking work of translating this from Saint Augustine's works. I have taken the liberty of re-writing it to put it in the 1st person singular, rather than the 1st person plural, and to break it up, as far as possible, into matched lines. I think this makes it a much more personal prayer. Here it is as I have re-written it:

If I place before Thine eyes, O Lord,
My sins and the wounds I have received,
The less I suffer
And the greater I merit.

I feel the punishment for sin,
Yet I do not shun my obstinacy in sinning.

My fragile nature is shattered by Thy scourges,
Yet my evil ways remain unchanged.

My sick mind is wrenched,
Yet my stiff neck is not bent.

My life sighs in pain, and
Yet it does not amend itself.

If Thou waiteth, I do not reform,
If Thou punisheth, I do not last.

When accused, I admit what I have done,
Yet, when punished, I forget.

If Thou punisheth me, I make promises.
If Thou holdeth back the sword, I do not carry out my promises.

If Thou striketh me, I cry out that Thou might spare me;
If Thou sparest me, I again provoke Thee to strike me.

If difficulties come, I ask for a time for repentance.
If mercy comes to my aid, I abuse the patience which has spared me.

Even when my wounds are scarcely healed,
My ungrateful mind forgets.

If Thou hearest me quickly, I become haughty from Thy mercy.
If Thou art slow, I complain out of impatience.

I am willing to serve Thee because of what Thou hast done,
Yet I do not fear to neglect what Thou wouldst have me do.

Thou hast in Thy power, O Lord, this guilty wretch who has confessed;
Be merciful, for Thou art kind and loving.

I know that, unless Thou forgiveth me, Thou shalt justly punish me.
But with Thee is much pity and abundant forgiveness.

Grant, without any merit on my part, what I ask,
O Thou, who hast made from nothing him who asks Thee.

Have mercy on me crying out to Thee, O Lord.
May my faithful and tearful voice stir up Thy mercy.

May that forgiveness not consider that I have sinned,
But may it reflect on the fact I am asking.

Since it is a great misery that I am accused,
May the fact that I am miserable make Thy mercy the greater.

I beg Thine help,
And before Thee I place the evils and sorrows of my crimes.

By my prayers I seek Thy mercy,
The very mercy which I have spurned by my sins.

Raise me up in Thy mercy, o Lord my God,
so that in the fellowship of salvation and the joy of charity,
While I long to be saved,
I may rejoice in the faith and peace of all the world to come.

Through Christ our Lord,
Amen.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Wednesday In the Lenten Embertide

It is the Lenten embertide, probably the most solemn period of penitence until Holy Week itself. In embertide, which occurs four times per year (the week of Gaudete Sunday in Advent, the week after Ash Wednesday in Lent, the week of Pentecost, and the week after the Exaltation of the True Cross in September) the Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday are set aside as special days of prayer, fasting, abstinence, and almsgiving.

Station Church:
Saint Mary Major



From The Passion And Death Of Jesus Christ, by Saint Alphonsus de Liguori:

O my Jesus, Immaculate Lamb sacrificed on the Cross for me! Let not all that Thou hast suffered for me be lost, but accomplish in me the object of Thy great sufferings! O bind me entirely with the sweet chains of Thy love in order that I may not leave Thee, and that I may nevermore be separated from Thee: "Most sweet Jesus, suffer me not to be searated from Thee, suffer me not to be separated from Thee!
Amen.

Devotions For a Lenten Wednesday Holy Hour:
Dies Irae
Divine Mercy Chaplet
Seven Penitential Psalms & the prayers against the Seven Deadly Sins
Prayer of St. Thomas More
Threnus Prayer
Seven Prayers of St. Gregory

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Tuesday Of the First Week In Lent



Station Church:
S. Anastasia (S. Teodoro) al Palatino


From The Passion And Death Of Jesus Christ, by Saint Alphonsus de Liguori:

Thou wouldst then die for me, Thine enemy, o my Jesus!  And yet, can I resist so much love?  Behold, here I am.  Since Thou dost anxiously desire that I should love Thee, I will drive away every other love from my breast, and will love Thee alone.
Amen.

Devotions for a Lenten Tuesday Holy Hour:
Dies Irae
Divine Mercy Chaplet
Seven Penitential Psalms
Prayer of St. Thomas More
Threnus Prayer of Saint Augustine
Devotion of the Seven Last Words

Note: This is the Lenten Ember Week. Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday are Ember Days.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Ember Alert

Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday of this week constitute the Lenten Embertide, days set aside near the transition from one season to another, and marked by fast, abstinence, extra prayer and almsgiving. In this case, we have these days to help us prepare for Easter. Remember, it's Ember!

Monday Of the First Week Of Lent

S. Pietro in Vincoli al Colle Oppio



From The Passion And Death of Jesus Christ, by Saint Alphonsus de Liguori:

O my most loving Saviour! I feel indeed that all Thy speak to me of the love that Thou bearest me. And who that had so many pfoofs of Thy love couldst resist loving Thee in return? St. Teresa was indded right, O most amyiable Jesus, when she said that he who loves Thee not gives a proof that he does not know Thee.


Devotions for a Lenten Monday Holy Hour
Dies Irae
Divine Mercy Chaplet
Seven Penitential Psalms
Prayer of St. Thomas More
Threnus Prayer of Saint Augustine
Devotion of the Five Sacred Wounds

Note: This is the Lenten Ember Week. Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday are Ember Days.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?