Saturday, February 20, 2016

20 Ways To Pray For The Souls in Purgatory

(Source : http://www.catholiccompany.com/getfed/20-ways-to-pray-for-the-holy-souls-in-purgatory/)

20 WAYS TO PRAY FOR THE SOULS IN PURGATORY

1. Pray the Novena to the Holy Souls.

2. Offer up your Holy Communions for the souls in purgatory.

3. Have Masses said for your departed loved ones, especially on the anniversary of his or her death.

4. Pray The Way Of The Cross for Souls in Purgatory.

5. Pray the special Holy Souls Rosary. After the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the Holy Rosary is the most powerful prayer.

6. Obtain indulgences:  Indulgences reduce or cancel the temporal punishment that we incur through sin.* There are many ways to obtain indulgences through pious actions, and we can apply their merits to the dead. If you visit a church or oratory on All Souls Day and recite there the Lord's Prayer and the Apostle's Creed, you can earn a plenary (full) indulgence applicable only to the souls in purgatory (under the usual conditions).

7. Give alms: The giving of material assistance to the poor has always been considered a penance that can be offered for the Holy Souls. "For almsgiving saves from death and purges away every sin" (Tobit 12:9).

8. Pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet for the intention of the Holy Souls.

9. Prayer of St. Gertrude the Great: tradition holds that St. Gertrude was told that piously reciting this prayer releases 1,000 souls from purgatory.

10. Sprinkle holy water on the ground: St. John Macias, a great friend of those in purgatory, would often sprinkle holy water on the ground for the spiritual benefit of the suffering souls.

11. When passing by a cemetery, pray the short Eternal Rest prayer: "Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord. And let the perpetual light shine upon them. And may the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen." This prayer carries a partial indulgence applicable to the poor souls.

12. Practice the tradition of praying the Eternal Rest prayer (above) before and after your meals as an easy way to pray for the holy souls daily. You can also pray the prayer between the decades of your daily rosary.

13. Visit a cemetery: Pray over the graves of your departed loved ones, or visit a random graveyard and pray for those who may have no one to pray for them. Simply doing this gains a partial indulgence for those in purgatory.  While you're there, sprinkle holy water on the graves. If you make this visit daily during the octave of All Souls Day (November 2-9) you can gain a plenary indulgence* applicable to the souls in purgatory.

14. Eucharistic Adoration: make reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus for those in purgatory.

15. Sacrifices: practice acts of self-denial and offer these penances up for the poor souls.

16. Pray the Office of the Dead. You can find this in your volume of the Liturgy of the Hours or online here.

17. Ask for the intercession of saints who were known to be great friends of the Holy Souls during their lifetime: St. Nicholas of Tolentino, St. Gertrude the Great, St. Catherine of Genoa, St. Padre Pio, St. Philip Neri, St. John Macías, St. Faustina Kowalska, St. Joseph, Our Lady, and others.

18. Special prayers: Throughout your day, offer up short and spontaneous prayers for the holy souls. Consider buying purgatory books with more prayers and special devotions for the Holy Souls.

19. Repent go to confession: Confessing your own sins makes your prayers for souls more effective.

20. Spread devotion to the Holy Souls: Make others aware of the great need these suffering souls have for our prayers.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Deuteronomy 28 Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition (DRA)

28 Now if thou wilt hear the voice of the Lord thy God, to do and keep all his commandments, which I command thee this day, the Lord thy God will make thee higher than all the nations that are on the earth.

And all these blessings shall come upon thee and overtake thee: yet so if thou hear his precepts,

Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed in the field.

Blessed shall be the fruit of thy womb, and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the droves of thy herds, and the folds of thy sheep.

Blessed shall be thy barns and blessed thy stores.

Blessed shalt thou be coming in and going out.

The Lord shall cause thy enemies, that rise up against thee, to fall down before thy face: one way shall they come out against thee, and seven ways shall they flee before thee.

The Lord will send forth a blessing upon thy storehouses, and upon all the works of thy hands: and will bless thee in the land that thou shalt receive.

The Lord will raise thee up to be a holy people to himself, as he swore to thee: if thou keep the commandments of the Lord thy God, and walk in his ways.

10 And all the people of the earth shall see that the name of the Lord is invocated upon thee, and they shall fear thee.

11 The Lord will make thee abound with all goods, with the fruit of thy womb, and the fruit of thy cattle, with the fruit of thy land, which the Lord swore to thy fathers that he would give thee.

12 The Lord will open his excellent treasure, the heaven, that it may give rain in due season: and he will bless all the works of thy hands. And thou shalt lend to many nations, and shalt not borrow of any one.

13 And the Lord shall make thee the head and not the tail: and thou shalt be always above, and not beneath: yet so if thou wilt hear the commandments of the Lord thy God which I command thee this day, and keep and do them,

14 And turn not away from them neither to the right hand, nor to the left, nor follow strange gods, nor worship them.

15 But if thou wilt not hear the voice of the Lord thy God, to keep and to do all his commandments and ceremonies, which I command thee this day, all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee.

16 Cursed shalt thou be in the city, cursed in the field.

17 Cursed shall be thy barn, and cursed thy stores.

18 Cursed shall be the fruit of thy womb, and the fruit of thy ground, the herds of thy oxen, and the flocks of thy sheep.

19 Cursed shalt thou be coming in, and cursed going out.

20 The Lord shall send upon thee famine and hunger, and a rebuke upon all the works which thou shalt do: until he consume and destroy thee quickly, for thy most wicked inventions, by which thou hast forsaken me.

21 May the Lord set the pestilence upon thee, until he consume thee out of the land, which thou shalt go in to possess.

22 May the Lord afflict thee with miserable want, with the fever and with cold, with burning and with heat, and with corrupted air and with blasting, and pursue thee till thou perish.

23 Be the heaven, that is over thee, of brass: and the ground thou treadest on, of iron.

24 The Lord give thee dust for rain upon thy land, and let ashes come down from heaven upon thee, till thou be consumed.

25 The Lord make thee to fall down before thy enemies, one way mayst thou go out against them, and flee seven ways, and be scattered throughout all the kingdoms of the earth.

26 And be thy carcass meat for all the Fowls of the air, and the beasts of the earth, and be there none to drive them away.

27 The Lord strike thee with the ulcer of Egypt, and the part of thy body, by which the dung is cast out, with the scab and with the itch: so that thou canst not be healed.

28 The Lord strike thee with madness and blindness and fury of mind.

29 And mayst thou grope at midday as the blind is wont to grope in the dark, and not make straight thy ways. And mayst thou at all times suffer wrong, and be oppressed with violence, and mayst thou have no one to deliver thee.

30 Mayst thou take a wife, and another sleep with her. Mayst thou build a house, and not dwell therein. Mayest thou plant a vineyard and not gather the vintage thereof.

31 May thy ox be slain before thee, and thou not eat thereof. May thy ass be taken away in thy sight, and not restored to thee. May thy sheep be given to thy enemies, and may there be none to help thee.

32 May thy sons and thy daughters be given to another people, thy eyes looking on, and languishing at the sight of them all the day, and may there be no strength in thy hand.

33 May a people which thou knowest not, eat the fruits of thy land, and all thy labours: and mayst thou always suffer oppression, and be crushed at all times.

34 And be astonished at the terror of those things which thy eyes shall see:

35 May the Lord strike thee with a very sore ulcer in the knees and in the legs, and be thou incurable from the sole of the foot to the top of the head.

36 The Lord shall bring thee, and thy king, whom thou shalt have appointed over thee, into a nation which thou and thy fathers know not: and there thou shalt serve strange gods, wood and stone.

37 And thou shalt be lost, as a proverb and a byword to all people, among whom the Lord shall bring thee in.

38 Thou shalt cast much seed into the ground, and gather little: because the locusts shall consume all.

39 Thou shalt plant a vineyard, and dig it, and shalt not drink the wine, nor gather any thing thereof: because it shall be wasted with worms.

40 Thou shalt have olive trees in all thy borders, and shalt not be anointed with the oil: for the olives shall fall off and perish.

41 Thou shalt beget sons and daughters, and shalt not enjoy them: because they shall be led into captivity.

42 The blast shall consume all the trees and the fruits of thy ground.

43 The stranger that liveth with thee in the land, shall rise up over thee, and shall be higher: and thou shalt go down, and be lower.

44 He shall lend to thee, and thou shalt not lend to him. He shall be as the head, and thou shalt be the tail.

45 And all these curses shall come upon thee, and shall pursue and overtake thee, till thou perish: because thou heardst not the voice of the Lord thy God, and didst not keep his commandments and ceremonies which he commanded thee.

46 And they shall be as signs and wonders on thee, and on thy seed for ever.

47 Because thou didst not serve the Lord thy God with joy and gladness of heart, for the abundance of all things:

48 Thou shalt serve thy enemy, whom the Lord will send upon thee, in hunger, and thirst, and nakedness, and in want of all things: and he shall put an iron yoke upon thy neck, till he consume thee.

49 The Lord will bring upon thee a nation from afar, and from the uttermost ends of the earth, like an eagle that flyeth swiftly, whose tongue thou canst not understand,

50 A most insolent nation, that will shew no regard to the ancients, nor have pity on the infant,

51 And will devour the fruit of thy cattle, and the fruits of thy land: until thou be destroyed, and will leave thee no wheat, nor wine, nor oil, nor herds of oxen, nor flocks of sheep: until he destroy thee.

52 And consume thee in all thy cities, and thy strong and high walls be brought down, wherein thou trustedst in all thy land. Thou shalt be besieged within thy gates in all thy land which the Lord thy God will give thee:

53 And thou shalt eat the fruit of thy womb, and the flesh of thy sons and of thy daughters, which the Lord thy God shall give thee, in the distress and extremity wherewith thy enemy shall oppress thee.

54 The man that is nice among you, and very delicate, shall envy his own brother, and his wife, that lieth in his bosom,

55 So that he will not give them of the flesh of his children, which he shall eat: because he hath nothing else in the siege and the want, wherewith thy enemies shall distress thee within all thy gates.

56 The tender and delicate woman, that could not go upon the ground, nor set down her foot for over much niceness and tenderness, will envy her husband who lieth in her bosom, the flesh of her son, and of her daughter,

57 And the filth of the afterbirths, that come forth from between her thighs, and the children that are born the same hour. For they shall eat them secretly for the want of all things, in the siege and distress, wherewith thy enemy shall oppress thee within thy gates.

58 If thou wilt not keep, and fulfill all the words of this law, that are written in this volume, and fear his glorious and terrible name: that is, The Lord thy God:

59 The Lord shall increase thy plagues, and the plagues of thy seed, plagues great and lasting, infirmities grievous and perpetual.

60 And he shall bring back on thee all the afflictions of Egypt, which thou wast afraid of, and they shall stick fast to thee.

61 Moreover the Lord will bring upon thee all the diseases, and plagues, that are not written in the volume of this law till he consume thee:

62 And you shall remain few in number, who before were as the stars of heaven for multitude, because thou heardst not the voice of the Lord thy God.

63 And as the Lord rejoiced upon you before doing good to you, and multiplying you: so he shall rejoice destroying and bringing you to nought, so that you shall be taken away from the land which thou shalt go in to possess.

64 The Lord shall scatter thee among all people, from the farthest parts of the earth to the ends thereof: and there thou shalt serve strange gods, which both thou art ignorant of and thy fathers, wood and stone.

65 Neither shalt thou be quiet, even in those nations, nor shall there be any rest for the sole of thy foot. For the Lord will give thee a fearful heart, and languishing eyes, and a soul consumed with pensiveness:

66 And thy life shall be as it were hanging before thee. Thou shalt fear night and day, neither shalt thou trust thy life.

67 In the morning thou shalt say: Who will grant me evening? and at evening: Who will grant me morning? for the fearfulness of thy heart, wherewith thou shalt be terrified, and for those things which thou shalt see with thy eyes.

68 The Lord shall bring thee again with ships into Egypt, by the way whereof he said to thee that thou shouldst see it no more. There shalt thou be set to sale to thy enemies for bondmen and bondwomen, and no man shall buy you.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Confession : Exorcism Of The Soul

They call confession exorcism of the soul. And it literally is. Exorcists hv found that confession is one of the most important steps to get rid of a demon.

Psychologically one could say that confession makes one face one's faults, weaknesses or mistakes. And thus take the first step towards recovery.

But so many saint priests like Padre Pio and St John Vianney took confession very seriously. They used to hear confessions from 13 to 17 hours a day. And ppl would queue for hours. The priests hardly stopped to eat or drink. There were reports of casting out of demons during confessions. Ppl said they heard animal growls etc inside the confessional.

If you read about the lives of Padre Pio and St John Vianney, your hair would stand on end. Padre Pio was constantly beaten up ... but nobody could see the attackers. St John Vianney too reported being dragged about by his feet and was persecuted by very loud noises, his bed was shaken violently... the poor man had little peace.

I used to wonder about this... about the power of confession... until one early morning experience I will never forget.

I was at 6am mass at Blessed Sacrament Chapel in Sacred Heart Cathedral. I came too late to get a seat so I stood at the back together with other ppl. We all stood with our backs against the walls and doors of the two confessionals at the back. Praying like normal.

Then... during the Eucharistic liturgy... all of a sudden, a loud vibrating slam shook the glass walls and wooden doors of the confessionals. The whole row of shocked people jumped a step forward.

I was standing in front of the glass section. When I looked back, I half expected the glass to be broken because it was as if someone big inside the confessional had bodyslammed the wall.  But there was nobody inside the confessional. The whole row of people was very quiet. We went for communion and didnt say anything at all. But we looked at each other.

Till today I wonder who went for confession early that morning.  Was anything exorcised out of him or her? The slam took place at the Transubstantiation of Christ at the altar. The very moment bread and wine were transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Miracle Prayers

A friend (who I have never met!) gave me some prayers over Facebook one day and said that recited daily, the prayers would help me.  I read through them and found them pretty sound.  And started using them in my daily prayers.

And YES THEY ARE TRULY MIRACLE PRAYERS.  I will blog my experiences later but here are the prayers for all to use.

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The Miracle Prayers

Prayer To Apply the Blood of Jesus
I declare that Jesus Christ is Lord over my life – spirit, soul and body. In the name of Jesus, Father I thank You for the benefits and the provision of the Blood of Jesus. I cover my spirit, soul, mind, heart and body with the blood of Jesus. I cover my past, present and future in the precious blood of Jesus. Father, by the blood of Jesus, let every physical and spiritual burden on my life and shoulders be lifted now in Jesus' name. I apply the blood of Jesus upon my body – from the top of my head to the soles of my feet. I cover my thoughts, words, dreams, and actions with the blood of Jesus. I cover every desire of my heart with the precious blood of Jesus. I cover every conversation of mine whether on phone, in person, on chat, sms and emails with the precious blood of Jesus. I cover all my relationships with the blood of Jesus. I cover (name all your immediate family members – i.e. your father, mother, etc) with the blood of Jesus. I cover my marriage with the blood of Jesus (If you are married) I cover all my vehicles (if you have any) with the blood of Jesus I cover all those connected with me with the blood of Jesus. I apply the blood of Jesus all over my house and upon each and everything in my house. I cover the surroundings of my house with the blood of Jesus. I cover all the vehicles and every mode of transport that I and my family will be travelling today with the blood of Jesus. I cover all our travel plans with the blood of Jesus. Father, in the name of Jesus, I cover all my finances and possessions with the blood of Jesus. I apply the blood of Jesus on all that belongs to me, and on all over which You have made me responsible. I cover all my clothes and everything that I will wear and use with the precious blood of Jesus. I cover all my food, water and drink and everything that I will consume today with the precious blood of Jesus. I cover my (business, job, studies, ministry of Jesus, etc – choose what applies to you) with the blood of Jesus. Let every door that I have ever opened to demonic powers be closed; be sealed forever with the blood of Jesus. 
Amen.

Prayer Before Reading The Bible
Loving Heavenly Father, Pour out Your Spirit upon me and make Your Word known to me. Please speak to me through Your Word today. Open my eyes to see the truth of Your Word as You meant it to be. Grant me Your wisdom to understand all that You want me to understand about this matter. Let Your Word be the joy of my heart and the light to my feet. Give me the strength to build my life on Your Word. Take away all hindrances and bondages that would in any way prevent Your Word from bearing fruit in my life. Let it be done to me according to Your Word. Teach me O Lord the way of Your will and I will observe it.
Speak Lord, Your servant is listening. In Jesus' name, I pray. 
Amen.

Prayer of Salvation
Dear Lord Jesus, I bow before You to acknowledge You as my Lord and Saviour. I humble my heart before You. I believe You are the Son of God. You died for my sins. You were buried and God the Fa- ther raised You from the dead. I am sorry for all the things I have done to hurt You. Have mercy on me. Forgive all my sins. Come into my heart and take total charge over every area of my life.
I renounce all activities and beliefs which are contrary to Your Word (the Bible). I will from this day onwards follow You, Lord Jesus. Cleanse me with Your Precious Blood. Fill me and seal me with Your Holy Spirit. I am a new creation. Old things have passed away; now all things have become new in Jesus' name. 
Amen

Prayer of Healing
Loving and Compassionate Jesus, Surely You have borne my griefs and carried my sorrows; Yet I esteemed You stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But You were wounded for my transgressions, You were bruised for my iniquities; the punishment that brought me peace was upon You, and by Your wounds I am healed. I fully believe that it is Your will for me to be healed. According to Your Word, "heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved."
Lord, Your Word also says "You will strengthen the person who looks upon You on his bed of illness; You will sustain him on his sickbed." So now according to Your Word, be merciful to me, strengthen and sustain me. Lord Jesus, when You physically walked this earth, You healed every single sick and deceased person that came to You. Please listen to my cry and heal me. Lord Jesus, wash me in Your precious blood. Please forgive all my sins that block Your healing power from touching me. I forgive all those who have hurt me or rejected me in any way. Come into my heart Lord Jesus. I claim the healing and now by faith I thank You for this healing. 
Amen.

Prayer To Break Generational Curses
In the name of Jesus Christ and the Blood of Jesus Christ, I break every form of generational curse that dates back to four generations in my family that is hindering me from entering the purpose of God for my life. Every evil pronouncement made over my life and fami- ly bloodline be cancelled in the mighty name of Jesus Christ. I believe and confess that the Lord Jesus Christ is good for He has redeemed me and my family members from the curse of the law having become a curse for us: for it is written, cursed is he who hangs on a tree. Now the blessing of Abraham is upon me and my family members in Christ Jesus. I and my family are no longer un- der the law but under grace, hence sin shall not have dominion over us. In Jesus' Name. Amen

Prayer Against Fear
In the name of Jesus, I declare that God has not given me a spirit of fear but a spirit of power and of love and of a calm and well-balanced sound mind, discipline and self-control. I declare that the Lord is on my side; I will not fear.
What can man do to me? The Lord is on my side and takes my part. He is among those who help me; therefore shall I see Your desire established upon my enemies who hate me. If God is for me, who can be against me? Who can be my foe, if God is on my side? I take comfort and am encouraged and confidently and boldly say, "The Lord is my helper, I will not be seized with alarm. I will not fear or dread or be terrified. What can man do to me?" The Lord is my light and my salvation. Whom shall I fear or dread? The Lord is the refuge and stronghold of my life of whom shall I be afraid? Even though a host encamp against me, my heart shall not fear. Though wars arise against me, even then, in this, will I be confident in my God.
Father, I thank You that I have been delivered from the power of darkness and translated into the kingdom of Your own dear Son Jesus. I thank You Father that Your perfect love drives out all fear and torment. I choose to think on and fix my mind upon those things that are true, noble, just, pure, lovely, and deserving of praise. My mind is stayed on You, Lord. In the name of Jesus Christ, I cast down every lying deceptive thought and imagination, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of You, Lord. I capture every thought and make it obey the Lord Jesus Christ. I resist all fear, in the name of Jesus Christ. I apply the Blood of Jesus on my mind and soul. Fear, you bow to the name of Jesus! You are a defeated foe. You have no more dominion over me.
I am free, in the name of Jesus. I am rooted and grounded securely in God's love, in the mighty name of Jesus. God's perfect love drives out all fear, in Jesus' name. Father, I pray and believe that Your peace which surpasses all understanding, will guard my heart and mind through Christ Jesus. I thank You Lord that the angels who are my ministering spirits are hearkening to the voice of Your Word right now and enforcing the breakthrough and the victory for me.
Hallelujah! The victory is mine! I give You Lord all of the praise and glory for setting me free! Amen.

House Dedication Prayer
By the blood and in the name of Lord Jesus Christ, I bind all evil and darkness that is in this room and command it to go right now under the feet of Jesus. "For all things are under the feet of Jesus." I claim by faith that this room is covered under the blood of Jesus Christ and no evil can enter it. (Prayin every room of the house.)

After going through every room in the house, pray:
I dedicate and consecrate this home to the Lord Jesus Christ. I declare satan has no hold on it. I surrender everything in this house to the Lord Jesus Christ and claim it under His protection.

In the name of Lord Jesus Christ, I bind every evil and darkness that is in this house and against this house. I command it to go under the feet of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I claim by faith that everything in this house is covered under the blood of Jesus Christ from the top of the roof to the bottom of the footing and everything in between. I claim by faith that this house is surrounded by two walls of fire, and covered under the blood of Jesus Christ. Lord, I pray that you send Your Holy Angels to come and protect this house and everyone inside. Thank You for the complete victory we already have in Jesus Christ. 
Amen.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Devotion to the Five First Saturdays

"The following is an explanation of the conditions contained in Our Lady's request regarding the Communion of reparation on the First Saturdays of the Month."

Confess and receive Holy Communion

On February 15, 1926 the Child Jesus alone came to visit Sr. Lucia and asked if the devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary was being propagated. Sr. Lucia spoke of a difficulty some people have in confessing on the first Saturday, and asked if they might be allowed eight days in order to fulfill Our Lady's requests. Jesus answered: "Yes, even more time still, as long as they receive Me in the state of grace and have the intention of making reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary."
Recite the Rosary

Five decades of the Rosary may be recited at any time or place; yet, since one will be attending Mass in order to receive Holy Communion, a very desirable time and place would be before or after Mass in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament. Meditation on the mysteries according to one's capacity is an essential condition for praying the Rosary. Yet, involuntary distractions do not rob the Rosary of fruit if one is doing the best he can.
"Keep me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary."

The question is often asked: Does the meditation while reciting the Rosary fulfill this condition, or is there required an additional fifteen minutes of meditation? That an additional 15 minutes of meditation is required was recently confirmed by Sr. Lucia of Fatima. It is clear too from a statement by the first Bishop of Fatima.

The last entry in the chronology of Fatima, published in the official Calendar of the Sanctuary for the year of 1940, and signed by Dom Jose Correia da Silva, the first Bishop of Fatima, gave a summary of Our Lady's requests concerning the Five First Saturdays. From that official statement in the Calendar of the Sanctuary, we read the Bishop's enumeration of the various items that pertain to the devotion of the five Saturdays:

It consists in going to Confession, receiving Communion, reciting five decades of the Rosary and meditating for a quarter of an hour on the mysteries of the Rosary on the first Saturday of five consecutive months. The Confession may be made during the eight days preceding or following the first Saturday of each month, provided that Holy Communion be received in the state of grace. Should one forget to form the intention of making reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, it may be formed at the next Confession, occasion to go to confession being taken at the first opportunity.

The meditation embraces one or more mysteries; it may even include all, taken together or separately, according to individual attraction or devotion; but it is preferable to meditate on one mystery each month.

Speaking of the requirement of "keeping me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary," the Bishop's comment that "it is preferable to meditate on one mystery each month" could apply only to an extra fifteen minutes, for each decade of the Rosary must have its own particular meditation. This is clear from the definition of the Rosary given in the official document of the Church on indulgences, the ENCHIRIDION OF INDULGENCES published by Pope Paul VI in 1968. It describes the Rosary as follows:

"The Rosary is a certain formula of prayer, which is made up of fifteen decades of HAIL MARYS with an OUR FATHER before each decade, and in which the recitation of each decade is accompanied by pious meditation on a particular mystery of our Redemption." (n. 48)
* * * * * * * * * *

"Like the Rosary, this meditation may be made any time or place during the first Saturday. Yet again, like the Rosary, a very fitting time and place would be in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament before or after Mass. The question has been asked: "Would an extra Rosary, which would require about fifteen minutes, fulfill this request? It would seem, if fruitfully meditated, that it would. Or again, the time could be spent reading meditatively on one of the fifteen mysteries, which is a form of mental prayer that involves reading with frequent pauses to reflect on the matter read.
With the intention of making reparation."

All of the conditions mentioned above - in numbers 1 to 3 - should be fulfilled with the intention of making reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. On the occasion of the visit of the Child Jesus to Sr. Lucia (Feb. 16, 1926), she asked: "My Jesus, what about those who forget to make the intention?" Jesus answered: "They can do so at their next confession, taking advantage of their first opportunity to go to Confession."

"The above are the minimum requirements for fulfilling the conditions of Our Lady's promise to obtain for us "at the hour of death the graces necessary for salvation." Yet, these Communions of reparation, as has been pointed out, are only a portion of the devotion of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. These few pages are meant to help bring about a frame of mind and heart that will make us aware of the need of reparation all through the month, and not just on the first Saturday."

WHY FIVE SATURDAYS?

"It is sometimes asked why Our Lady asked for Communions of reparation on five first Saturdays, instead of some other number. Our Blessed Lord answered that question when He appeared to Sr. Lucia May 29, 1930. He explained that it was because of five kinds of offenses and blasphemies against the Immaculate Heart of Mary, namely: blasphemies against her Immaculate Conception, against her perpetual virginity, against the divine and spiritual maternity of Mary, blasphemies involving the rejection and dishonoring of her images, and the neglect of implanting in the hearts of children a knowledge and love of this Immaculate Mother."

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The Medal of Saint Benedict

Have you ever looked at a St. Benedict medal and wondered what it all means?  The front and back are covered with letters that don't seem to make any sense.  You probably made out the name "Benedict", but the rest of the words were in Latin.  The complete meaning of this medal was shrouded in mystery for many years, until an important discovery was made in 1647 at the Abbey of Metten in Bavaria.  They found a manuscript from the year 1415 which explained the initials found on the medal.  The mystery was finally unraveled!

 The Front Side - St. Benedict is shown at the center of the medal. In his right hand he holds a cross. The cross represents the saving power of Christ and the work of evangelization by the Benedictines over the centuries. In his left hand is a book containing the Holy Rule of his order. To his right is a broken cup. This cup was said to be poisoned by monks who did not like it when he became Abbot of their monastery. The cup was shattered when St. Benedict made a sign of the cross over it, and his life was saved. To his left is a raven. The raven carried away a poisoned loaf of bread the monks tried to give St. Benedict.

Above his head are the words: Crux Sancti Patris Benedicti (Cross of the Holy Father Benedict). Around the edge are the words: Ejus in obitu nostro praesentia muniamus. (May we at our death be fortified by his presence).

Below his feet are the letters: EX SM CASINO MDCCCLXX (From holy Monte Cassino, 1880).

This medal was created in Monte Cassino, Italy, in 1880 to celebrate the 1400th anniversary of Saint Benedict's birth. The occasion of this celebration is why the medal is called the "Jubilee" medal.

The Reverse Side - The back of the medal is dominated by a large cross. The letters on the cross are actually the initials for the Latin phrases: Crux Sacra Sit Mihi Lux (The Holy Cross be my light) and Non Draco Sit Mihi Dux (Let not the dragon be my guide).

In the four corners are circles with the letters CSPB. These letters are the initials for Crux Sancti Patris Benedicti (The Cross of our holy father Benedict).

At the top is the word Pax (peace). Around the edge are the initials for the exorcism prayer: Vade Retro Satana, Nunquam Suade Mihi Vana - Sunt Mala Quae Libas, Ipse Venena Bibas (Begone, Satan, do not suggest to me thy vanities - evil are the things thou profferest, drink thou thy own poison).

The Jubilee Medal itself has no power at all. Wearers must be careful not to fall into acts of superstition. The Jubilee Medal is simply a visible sign of the inner devotion and belief the wearer has to Jesus and his servant, St. Benedict. We ask for God's blessing and protection through the intercession of St. Benedict.

The Jubilee medal includes an unconditional indulgence to anyone at the time of death who will "wear, kiss or hold the Medal between the hands with veneration". The indulgence is given if the person commends his or her soul to God and makes a good confession or receive Holy Communion. If the person cannot do this, he or she can "invoke the Holy Name of Jesus with feelings of contrition, (or with the heart if one cannot speak)".

In addition to the unconditional indulgence, a partial indulgence is given to anyone who will "wear, kiss or hold the Medal between the hands with veneration". Over the years, many miracles have been reported by those wearing the medal. The medal has also been attributed to great blessings. Some of those blessings include:

1. Warding off temptation
2. Obtaining the conversion of sinners, especially before death
3. Easing of pain for women during labor
4. Help in preserving purity
5. Granting the grace of a happy death
6. Protection during storms
7. Interceding for curing disease

The Miraculous Medal (The Medal of the Immaculate Conception)

The Blessed Virgin herself designed the Medal of the Immaculate Conception—popularly known as the Miraculous Medal! No wonder, then, that it wins such extraordinary graces for those who wear it and pray for Mary's intercession and help.

The First Apparition
The story begins on the night of July 18-19, 1830.  A child (perhaps her guardian angel) awakened Sister (now Saint) Catherine Labouré, a novice in the community of the Daughters of Charity in Paris, and summoned her to the chapel.  There she met with the Virgin Mary and spoke with her for several hours.  During the conversation, Mary said to her, “My child, I am going to give you a mission.”

The Second Apparition
Mary gave her this mission in a vision during evening meditation on November 27, 1830. She saw Mary standing on what seemed to be half a globe and holding a golden globe in her hands as if offering it to heaven. On the globe was the word “France” and our Lady explained that the globe represented the whole world, but especially France.  The times were difficult in France, especially for the poor who were unemployed and often refugees from the many wars of the time.  France was first to experience many of those troubles which ultimately reached other parts of the world and are even present today.  Streaming from rings on Mary's fingers as she held the globe were many rays of light. Mary explained that the rays symbolize the graces she obtains for those who ask for them.  However, some of the gems on the rings were dark, and Mary explained that the rays and graces were available but did not come because no one had asked for them.

The Third Apparition and the Miraculous Medal
The vision then changed to show our Lady standing on a globe with her arms now outstretched and with the dazzling rays of light still streaming from her fingers. Framing the figure was an inscription: O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.

The vision turned and showed the design of the reverse side of the medal. Twelve stars encircled a large "M" from which arose a cross. Below are two hearts with flames arising from them. Thorns encircle one heart and a sword pierces the other.

Then Mary spoke to Catherine: “Have a medal struck upon this model. Those who wear it will receive great graces, especially if they wear it around the neck.” Catherine explained the entire series of apparitions to her confessor, and she worked through him to carry out Mary’s instructions. She did not reveal that she received the Medal until soon before her death 47 years later.

With approval of the Church, the first Medals were made in 1832 and were distributed in Paris. Almost immediately the blessings that Mary had promised began to shower down on those who wore her Medal. The devotion spread like wildfire. Marvels of grace and health, peace and prosperity, followed in its wake. Before long people were calling it the “Miraculous” Medal. In 1836, a canonical inquiry undertaken at Paris declared the apparitions to be genuine.

There is no superstition, nothing of magic, connected with the Miraculous Medal. The Miraculous Medal is not a “good-luck charm”. Rather, it is a great testimony to faith and the power of trusting prayer. Its greatest miracles are those of patience, forgiveness, repentance, and faith. God uses a Medal, not as a sacrament, but as an agent, an instrument, in bringing to pass certain marvelous results. “The weak things of this earth hath God chosen to confound the strong.”

When our Blessed Mother gave the design of the medal to Saint Catherine Labouré she said, “Now it must be given to the whole world and to every person.” The Association of the Miraculous Medal in Perryville, Missouri carries out our Lady’s request in many ways, including offering you a free Miraculous Medal.

Association of the Miraculous Medal
http://www.amm.org/AboutAMM/Miraculous%20Medal%20Story.aspx