Mary's Little Office

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Month of Mary - Last Day :( :(




The Story:

Index to Older Stories

Among the vast number of servants of Mary, St. Alphonsus Liguori was one of the most noteworthy. From his childhood he practiced virtue and devotion. Endowed with splendid mental faculties he became a counsellor-at-law; but fearing that he would become guilty of injustice, he resolved to serve only God and his church. He became a priest, afterward bishop and the founder of the congregation of the most holy Redeemer. He devoted himself to the mission, in which by his powerful sermons, devout prayer and touching example he converted many sinners. His love to Jesus is expressed in his book: Visits to the Most Blessed Sacrament: his love to Mary is revealed in the work entitled: The Glories of Mary. He served God in the work for the salvation of his fellow-men, he served Mary by many devotions, rosary and filial confidence perseveringly until his death in the year 1787.


The Prayer:

O holy Mother Mary! pray for me, thy unworthy child, that I may never act contrary to God's holy will, that I may practice only virtues and persevere unto my end, so that I may be glorified hereafter and obtain the crown of eternal life. Amen.



Pray Your Rosary 




Monday, May 29, 2017

29th Visit to Jesus & Mary

Dedication, Introduction & Index
Visit of the Good Master





A FRIEND AT THE DOOR

"I stand at the gate and knock." (Apoc. 5). 

Most loving Shepherd, you have laid down your life for your sheep, a Victim on the altar of the Cross. Now you want to be always close by so that you can knock at the door of our hearts and find entrance therein; for this you remain hidden in the Blessed Sacrament on the altars of our Churches. O if I had only the wisdom to find my joy there so close to you. 


It was this nearness to her Beloved that gave such joy to the Spouse in the Canticles when she exclaimed, "I sat down in the shadow of Him whom I loved." (Cant. 2). O my Most Beloved, if I only loved you and loved you truly, how I too would be filled with longing desire to remain inseparable from you, night and day at your feet, close to the Tabernacle! There at your very side with your glory and your majesty veiled by the shadow of the Sacred Species, I would find those delights that are divine, and the inexpressible happiness that is found only by the souls that love you. 


O draw me to you by the sweet odors of your beauty and by the boundless love opened up to me in this Sacrament. "Draw me. We will run after you in the odors of you ointments." 
(Cant. 1). 

Yes, my Saviour, at last I will turn away from created things and everything that is pleasant on earth, to run to you in the Blessed Sacrament. "As tender olive branches round about your altar." (Ps. 127). Those souls who remain close to Jesus burning with His love are like young olive plants; they bring forth abundant fruits of all the virtues as their offerings to God. 


But my Jesus, my soul is naked and empty of virtue; and so I am ashamed to appear before you. It has been decreed that those who come to adore at the altar must not come unless they have a gift to offer; "You shall not appear empty-handed in my sight." (Exod. 23). What then am I to do? Am I not allowed to come before you and to pay you my visit? No; it is not in this way I would please you. But the gift you want from me will be supplied by yourself, because I am very poor. I know this―that you remain in the Blessed Sacrament not only to reward those who love you, but also to give to the needy precious gifts from your own rich store. 


So now without any more delay I am going to begin: King of my heart, true Lover of Mankind, I adore you. Today I come beside the throne of your love, for you are the Good Shepherd, and your love for your sheep is exceeding great. I have nothing else to offer, so I give you my own poor heart. I want it to be consecrated all to your love and to your good-pleasure. I can love you with this heart because you made it for yourself
―and I want to love you with this heart as much as I possibly can. Take it. Bind it close to your own. And so from this day forward, like your beloved Apostle Paul, I too can proclaim with joy that I am bound with the bonds of your love; "Ego Paulus vinctus Christi." (Eph. 3). "I, Paul, in the bonds of Christ." 

Bring about the closest union between yourself and me, my dear Master. Let me forget myself, so that the day will come when I shall lose everything
―even my own self: but only to find you and to love you forever. Master, I love you―I love you in the Blessed Sacrament―and I bind myself to you; I want ever to be one with you. My Beloved, let me find you; and when I have found you let me never leave you again.

Aspiration
―My Jesus, you are all that I need, you alone.

SPIRITUAL COMMUNION  


Jesus, I believe you are in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love you; I want you to come to me. Come into my heart; I embrace you; O never depart from me.  


A VISIT TO MARY 

THE ROYAL ROAD AND THE VEHICLE 




Faith enlightens us, 
Hope supports us, Love draws us.

"The Royal Road to the Saviour"―This is the name that St. Bernard gives to Mary: the safe road to the place where the Saviour and salvation are found. The same Saint tells us that she is the vehicle that carries our souls to God. If that is true, O Lady, do not wait for me to walk towards God. Take me in your arms and carry me.  If I show resistance then use force with me; but the force that you will use will be the sweet attractions of your love for me. With this same force compel my wayward will to leave created things; and to seek only for God, my Creator, and His Divine Will. 

O show what power you have to all Heaven: you―who have done many wonderful things. Show us one more marvel of your mercy―draw entirely to God one who has been very far from Him.  

Aspiration
―Mary, you can make me holy; I hope for this from you.

Prayer After Visit





Month of Mary - 29th Day


The Story:

Index to Older Stories

If we seek the divine light of the Holy Ghost through Mary, we shall find it. The renowned Dominican, St. Albert the Great, was ardently attached to Mary. He was very pious, but almost despaired when studying, and intended to leave the monastery. Mary appeared to him in his sleep, asking him what he was about to do. He replied: "Ah, all my fellow students study easily; I alone am so troubled; all my efforts to study are useless; I am the object of laughter for all." The blessed Lady answered: "Be of good cheer; thou shalt excel in all sciences; but that you may not forget, that it is not owing to thy diligence and intellect, but to my intercession, know that shortly before thy death, all thy knowledge shall leave thee." And thus it happened three years before his holy death.

The Prayer:

Teach me, holy Mary, full of grace, to pray incessantly for this good spirit, that I may not be overpowered by the spirit of worldliness, and follow the ways leading to perdition. Grant, by thy intercession, that I may lead a life according to the dictates of my faith, and be thus enabled to praise the Triune God in heaven forever. Amen.



Pray Your Rosary 

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Month of Mary - 27th Day


The Story:

Index to Older Stories

When the holy martyr, St. Margaret was brought before the tribunal, the enraged prefect called upon her: "How can greater nonsense be thought of, than to consider as God a man, who had been crucified?" The virgin asked: "Whence dost thou know that Christ was crucified?" He replied; "Your own writings teach it." - "Well, then," Margaret answered, "the same books speak not only of the Passion of Christ, but also of His resurrection and glorification; how little you pause to believe the one and to deny the other? Not for the reason, that He suffered, that He died, do we believe; no! But He is risen. He has thus proved to us the power of His Divinity, and therefore we believe Him and praise His name and give our lives for His doctrines." With this profession upon her lips she was put to death.

The Prayer:

How great will be our joy, O blessed mother of our glorious Redeemer, when we also shall see Him, face to face, after this earthly life in His heavenly glory? Obtain thou for us the grace that we may bear temporal sufferings, die a happy death and enter into life everlasting. Amen. 



Pray Your Rosary 
              

27th Little Visit to Jesus & Mary

Near to Jesus, one finds happiness.





EMMANUEL

"There is no nation, however great, that has its gods as close to it as our God is close to us." The Church sings this verse in the Office of the Blessed Sacrament. 

When the pagans heard of God's works of love for us, they said, "O what a good God is this God of the Christians!" The pagans made for themselves gods that suited their fancies. But the history of the nations of the world shows us clearly that among their fables, and among all their gods, none of them ever thought of a god that loved men as much as our true God loves us. 


For God has worked a mighty prodigy of love by which He remains hidden on our altars. Here with us He lives, a companion who never leaves us night or day. It would seem that He did not want to be absent from us even for a moment and all this to show His love for those who adore Him, and to bestow on them His precious graces. "He has made a memorial of His wonderful works." 
(Ps. 110).  

My most sweet Jesus, you have worked the most mighty of all miracles to satisfy this intense longing of yours to stay with us and to be at our side always. How then can it be that men will fly from your presence? How can they live away from you for so long a time? Or come to visit you so very seldom? How can they grow so weary when they spend a quarter of an hour with you that they seem to think it is an age? How long-suffering, my Jesus, is your patience! Yes, I quite understand, my Master: your patience is great indeed, because your love for men is great indeed. It is this, and this alone, that makes you dwell, ever and always, among those who are so ungrateful.  


All your perfections, my God, are boundless so your love is boundless too. In the past I have numbered myself among those ungrateful ones but in the future O never let it happen any more. Give me a love that will try to correspond to what you deserve, and to my own duties to you. There was indeed a time when I too grew weary in your presence; it was because I did not love you, or because my love for you was altogether too little. But if you will only give me the grace to love you with a really great love, then never again will I grow weary though I spend whole nights and days at your feet in the Most Holy Sacrament.  


Eternal Father, to you I offer your own Son, Jesus. Accept Him from me, and for the sake of His merits give me such a burning and tender love for the Blessed Sacrament that, wherever I may be, I may turn in spirit to the church where Jesus dwells; filled with the thought of His love; filled with the yearning for the time to come once more when I can rest in His presence.


Aspiration―My God, for the sake of Jesus, give me a love that is really great for the Most Blessed Sacrament.



SPIRITUAL COMMUNION  

Jesus, I believe you are in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love you; I want you to come to me. Come into my heart; I embrace you; O never depart from me.


A VISIT TO MARY 
THE TOWER OF DAVID



In the Sacred Canticles the Holy Spirit speaks of the Tower of David in these words, "It is built with bulwarks. A thousand shields hang from its walls―the complete armour of the strong." Mary is the Tower of David. It is built with mighty strength; its powerful defences are beyond number; so are the arms and the supplies it affords to all who seek protection within.

Most holy Mary, St. Ignatius the Martyr tells me that you are a "most powerful fortress for all those engaged in war"
―a bastion of mighty strength for all those who are fighting in the battle. I am facing the assaults of my enemies; their attacks never cease; they are trying to wrest from me the grace of God and to deprive me of your protection, O My dearest Lady. But you are my fortress. You do not think it unworthy of you to come to the help of those who trust you in the combat. St. Ephrem tells me that you are "she who battles for those who trust in her." Do battle for me then and defend me for in you I put all my hope, all my trust.

Aspiration
―Mary, Mary, your name is my defense.


Prayer After Each Visit






Friday, May 26, 2017

Month of Mary - 26th Day

 

The Story:

Index to Older Stories

St. John, Gaulbert, following the profession of arms at a very troubled period, became involved in a blood-feud with a near relative. On Good Friday he met his enemy at a place, where neither could avoid the other. John would have slain his enemy, who was unarmed; but he falling upon his knees implored John for the sake of our Lord's Passion to pardon Him. Grace triumphed in John who replied: "I cannot refuse what you ask in Christ's name. I grant you your life, and I give you my friendship. Pray that God may forgive me my sin. John retired to a monastery, led a penitential and holy life, and died a Saint.

The Prayer:

O My God, relying on Thy infinite goodness and promises, I hope to obtain the pardon of my sins, the assistance of Thy grace, and life everlasting; through the merits of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour. Amen.

Pray Your Rosary 
                                                   

26th Visit to Jesus & Mary

Dedication, Introduction & Index
Ask, ask and ask again,
Jesus loves to give.


THE CANTICLE OF LOVE


"City of Sion, be of great joy! Give voice to your songs of praise. Great is the One who is in your midst: He is the Holy One of Israel." (Is. 22). How great our joy should be; how great our hopes; and how great our love; when we know that here in our own city, in our own church, close to our own home, the Holy One, God Himself, dwells in the Blessed Sacrament―yes, God Himself, whose presence gives joy exceeding great to the Saints in Heaven: God who is Love Itself! 

St. Bernard tells us "He imparts love. But this is not all: He is Love
―Love Itself. "God is Love." 

But here in this Sacrament, my dear Jesus, I can hear you making your sad complaint: "I came as your guest and you refused to welcome me." To do good to us you came to earth to be our Guest, and we had no welcome for you. Ah! yes, my Master, you are right; and one of those ungrateful ones who left you forsaken was myself; I did not even come to visit you. O punish me in any other way you will, but please do not punish me by depriving me of your presence; this is the punishment I deserve, but I will correct the rudeness of my manners, and my want of courtesy towards you. From today forward I want to visit you often and I want to spend as much time as I can in your company. 


O my gentle Saviour, make me faithful to you now, and inspire others by my example to keep you company in the Most Holy Sacrament. 


The voice of Your Eternal Father speaks to me, "This is My Beloved Son in Whom I am well pleased." (Matt. 17). In you the Great Almighty Father finds His boundless joy. And I, a poor thing of no worth dwelling in this valley of tears am to find my delight in you also! O Fire all-consuming, put an end to that love of created things that still lingers in me; because it is these, and these only, that can make me unfaithful to you and deprive me of your possession. You can do it. You wish to do it. You can make me clean. You have done much for me; do this one thing more: put out of my heart every particle of love that is not for you. Here and now I surrender myself completely to you; I dedicate all the rest of my life to the love of the Most Holy Sacrament. You, my Jesus in the Sacrament, will now be my comfort
―my love all my life long; and in the moment of my death. Then you will come to be my Viaticum; then you will bring me to the Kingdom of the Blessed.   


Amen. Amen.            

This is my hope; and so let it be.

Aspiration
―My Jesus, when shall I see your beautiful Face?


SPIRITUAL COMMUNION  

Jesus, I believe you are in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love you; I want you to come to me. Come into my heart; I embrace you; O never depart from me.  
 

A VISIT TO MARY 

THE BRIDGE OF GOD 



Mary, my Mother most holy, St. Germanus calls you "The power that supports our weakness." In you we will find the remedy for all our sickness; in you our weakness will find strength. 

St. Bonaventure calls you "The gate of Liberty"―In you we have the door through which we go forth from the slavery of sin. He also calls you "The safe resting place of men"―so in you too we find peace and security. St. Lawrence Justinian calls you "The comforter of our pilgrimage"―you bring relief to us in our sufferings. St Bonaventure calls you "The Throne of the Grace of God:" so to sum up all, in you we find God's grace and God Himself. St. Proclus tells us you are "The bridge by which God comes down to man"―our sins have separated us from God but happily for us, Mary is the bridge by which He passes when He comes to dwell in our souls by His grace.

Aspiration
―Mary, you are my strength, my liberty, my peace; and my salvation.


Thursday, May 25, 2017

13. The Second Hierarchy.


Praying for Pope Pius XII, Rome, 1958
Photo by Mark Kauffman


Index to Older Meditations

"Blessed are the meek, for they shall possess the land" (Matt. v. 4).  It is exhibited notably in the Church, which is always oppressed and always victorious;  which does not take the sword of the flesh for her defense, and therefore cannot perish by the sword; and which finds that the blood of her martyrs is the seed of abounding harvests. 

Quiet effort united with prayer is the most efficient and lasting force.

Continue this Two Page Meditation Below. 

                                                         Click Here  ⬆︎  To Enlarge




Month of Mary - The St. Helen Story


The Story:

Index to Older Stories

St. Helen was born and brought up by heathen parents. She became the wife of the Emperor Constantine, who rejected her after his throne ascension. Having respected the Christians at all time and being now rejected she sought consolation in the religion of the cross. She received holy baptism after her renowned son had gained, by the sign of the cross, a glorious victory. Though advanced in years she possessed a youthful, fiery zeal in the practice of devotion and good works. For a long time she entertained the desire of visiting the holy places; she sought and found the cross, upon which the blessed Saviour had died; she and her pious son had a beautiful church erected over the sepulchre of Christ; she had one built in memory of the Annunciation at Nazareth. For this love to Jesus and Mary and for her veneration of the holy cross and the holy places, she was rewarded by the queen of heaven with the greatest grace - a holy life and a holy death in the year 326.

The Prayer:

Obtain by thy intercession, O afflicted mother Mary, for me the grace of following Jesus by carrying my cross, which God is pleased to send me, to the end of my life in a patient and penitential manner, that following my Saviour now I may dwell with Him hereafter in heaven. Amen.



Pray Your Rosary 
                                                      

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

25th Visit to Jesus & Mary

Dedication, Introduction & Index
Prepare Your Hearts
Here is The Lord and All His Paradise.



THE SCHOOL OF OBEDIENCE


St. Paul praises the obedience of Jesus to His Father, "He became obedient even to death." (Phil. 2). In this Sacrament Jesus goes further: not only to His Father is He obedient, but He becomes obedient to man; obedient not only to death, but obedient to the end of the world. 

In obedience to the voice of man the King of Heaven comes from Heaven to the altar. He remains upon the altar to continue to practise obedience to men. Isaias puts the words on His lips: "Ego autem non contradico, "Whatever is asked of me, I never refuse to obey." (Is. 10). He remains motionless: He may be exposed in the Monstrance, or He may be shut up in the tiny Pyx; He may be carried to our homes, and through the streets; He may be given in Communion to those who are holy, or to the sinner. 

St. Luke tells us Jesus obeyed Mary and Joseph while He was on earth; in the Blessed Sacrament He is obedient to every priest―"I never refuse to obey." 

Now, Most Loving Heart of Jesus, let me speak to you―It is from you that all the Sacraments have come, but especially this Sacrament of Love. I want to give you as much honor and glory as you have given to your Eternal Father in every church in which you dwell―I know that, while you are on this altar, you love me with the same burning love with which you loved me when your life went out in bitter grief on the Cross. O Heart of Jesus, give light to those who do not know you that they may learn to know how beautiful you are. Through your merits set free from Purgatory, or at least give some relief to the souls that suffer there; for they love you and will love you in eternity. 

For myself―united in this hour with all souls that love you on earth and in Heaven―I adore you, I love you, I thank you. O Heart that is without stain, purify my heart from all unruly clinging to creatures, and fill it with your holy love; O Most Sweet Heart, take possession of all my heart so that from today forward it may be all your own; so that forever I may say "Who shall separate me from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 3). O heart Most Holy, on my heart engrave the bitter sorrows that you bore for so many years, and with such great love, for me. So that, at the sight of them, I may from this day forward have a deep longing to bear all the pains of this life for love of you―or at the very least I may suffer them in patience. O Heart of Jesus most humble, give me a share in our own humility; O heart most gentle, give me a share in your own meekness. Take from my heart everything that does not please you; turn it all to yourself: so that I will not want or wish for anything at all but what you yourself want. To sum up everything―Let me live only to obey you, only to love you, only to give you joy. I know well that I owe everything to you: that my debts to you are very great. Little indeed it will be if I can wear myself out and use up my life for you.

Aspiration―O Heart of Jesus, you are the God of my heart and you alone.

SPIRITUAL COMMUNION  

Jesus, I believe you are in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love you; I want you to come to me. Come into my heart; I embrace you; O never depart from me.  


A VISIT TO MARY  

THE HEAVENLY ARK



SHE IS MY REFUGE 

O, my Mother, receive me into your arms.


The Ark in which Noe escaped the universal Deluge is a figure of Mary. St. Bernardine calls her "The Ark in which we escape shipwreck." She is the heavenly ark in which we find shelter while on earth and so escape the shipwreck of everlasting loss. But Esecius says that Mary gives shelter which is superior to that of the Ark of Noe because it is more universal, has greater strength, and is more kindly. With Noe only a few men and beasts found shelter: Mary receives all who seek protection under her mantle and she saves them all. How unhappy our lot would be if we had not Mary! And yet, with all this many still are lost. Why is this? O Mother, it is because they do not go to you: nobody could be lost ever if he asked your help.


Aspiration―Most Holy Mary, may we all have recourse to you, and always!


Month of Mary - 24th Day


The Story:

Index to Older Stories

St. Catherine of Sienna was once very much dejected at a false report spread abroad about her, when the divine Saviour appeared to her, holding in his right hand a golden crown adorned with jewels, and in the left a crown of thorns and said "Beloved daughter! It is necessary that you be crowned at different times with both these crowns. Choose one of the two; but look to it, whether thou wilt be crowned in this present life with the crown of thorns, and in the next life with the golden crown." The holy virgin replied: "Lord, I have denied my will long ago, and therefore will only, what Thou wilt. . . . But yet, if Thou wilt that I answer I confess earnestly that in this life I always choose to be like and conformable to Thy sacred passion." Having said this she took the crown of thorns out of the hands of the Saviour, and pressed it with such force upon her head, that for a long time she felt the pains caused by the thorns.

The Prayer:

How would we dare to complain, O Mother of sorrows, at the thorny path of sufferings in this life, since thy divine Son was so cruelly tortured by the crown of thorns! We have deserved it by our sins of thought and pride. Assist us to bear all patiently and in a penitential spirit. Amen.



Pray Your Rosary