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FEAST OF ST. JOHN OF CAPISTRANO Job, Chapter 21, Verse 28 And to mortals he said: See: the fear of the Lord is wisdom; and avo...

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Friday, March 10, 2017 Ember Day (No Meat)

Deuteronomy, Chapter 18, Verse 21-22

21 Should you say to yourselves, “How can we recognize that a word is one the LORD has not spoken?”, 22 if a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD but the word does not come true, it is a word the LORD did not speak. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; do not fear him.

 

Even saints at times may have spoken presumptuously. Let us meditate on the words of Padre Pio, “Love and fear must go united together, fear without love becomes cowardice. Love without fear becomes presumption. When there is love without fear, love runs without prudence and without restraint, without taking care where it is going.” 

This is the great beauty of the Holy Spirit for it tells us when even a very holy person speaks not every word they speak comes from God. We error sometimes in this way, making men into gods; but a heart that is filled with the spirit of God is filled with quiet joy and even if the person were to be imprisoned they can find true freedom; because of the inner security of the heart. Let us never forget that Satan does his utmost to destroy mankind. In a thousand ways he plots and wars against God and tries to usurp His throne. On this subject, the following instruction given by Our Blessed Mother to Venerable Mary d' Agreda, is worth quoting: "My daughter," she says, "by no power of human words wilt thou in this mortal life ever succeed in describing the evil of Lucifer and his demons against men, or the malice, astuteness, deceits and ruses, with which, in his wrath, he seeks to bring them into sin and later on to eternal torments. He tries to hinder all good works . . . All the malice of which his own mind is capable, he attempts to inject into souls. Against these attacks, God provides admirable protection if men will only co-operate and correspond on their part." Among the means provided by God for our protection, is the ready recourse we may have at all times to the strengthening Blood of Christ. "This Blood," declares St. John Chrysostom, "has the power to drive away the evil spirits and to draw to our side the good angels, aye, the King of Angels, and to blazen the way to Heaven." Fortified by the Precious Blood, let us place ourselves under the leadership of St. Michael and unfurl everywhere the banner of our Faith, without fear of godlessness. If Satan tries to induce us to sin, and promises honors, riches, happiness on conditions that we omit a good work, or commit an evil deed, let us ever oppose the tempter with the energetic words: Who is like unto God? God is my only treasure, my highest Good, His Blood is upon me, and "though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil." If in time of temptation, we have the courage to rebuke the evil one and call upon the assistance of our leader, St. Michael, the enemy will surely be put to flight. But if we wish to enjoy the great Archangel's protection, we must also imitate his virtues, particularly his humility and his zeal for God's glory.

"O great St. Michael, take us 'neath thy shield, Thy mighty power in our favor wield!"[1]

Preparing for Battle[2] Know Your Weapons


The weapon of Sacred Sacraments

·         Baptism. Baptism is a sacrament of liberation and deliverance from Satan and his realm.
·         Reconciliation. Each time we sin, the Devil strengthens his grip on us; that is why it’s so important to go to sacramental Confession regularly
·         The Eucharist. Mass is a great defense against the assault of the Devil. Before Him the all-conquering power, the demons must flee. “We must return from that Table like lions breathing fire, having become terrifying to the Devil!”
·         Confirmation. To confirm means to make strong.
·         Anointing of the Sick. Illness, especially serious illness, can be a trial in which Satan comes to tempt us to be overcome by fear, discouragement, doubt, and even despair.
·         Matrimony. The Devil’s first attack on the human race was focused on a married couple. The home must become a sanctuary, a holy place, a fortress against Satan’s assaults.
·         Holy Orders. The sacrament through which Christ’s mission for the Church continues to be exercised until the end of the world.

Ember Day Prayers[3]

Prayer:Antiphon: Bless the Lord, O my soul, and never forget all He hath done for thee.
V. Lord, Thou has been our refuge.
R. From generation to generation.
Let us Pray: Grant, we beseech Thee, almighty God, that as year by year we devoutly keep these holy observances, we may be pleasing to Thee both in body and soul. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

In Honor of Christ's Betrayal and Passion
O God, Who for the world's Redemption was pleased to be born, circumcised, rejected by the Jews, betrayed by the kiss of traitor Judas, bound with chains, led like an innocent lamb to sacrifice, and shamefully presented before Annas, Caiphas, Pilate, and Herod, accused by false witnesses, beaten with whips, buffeted, insulted, spat upon, crowned with thorns, smitten with a reed, blindfolded, stripped of Thy garments, fastened with nails to the cross and lifted up on high, reputed among thieves, made to drink gall and vinegar and wounded by a lance; oh, by these most sacred sufferings, which, unworthy as I am, I thus commemorate, and by Thy holy cross and death, deliver me, Lord, from the pains of hell, and deign to lead me where Thou didst lead me where Thou didst lead the penitent thief, who was crucified by Thy side. Who, with the Father and the Holy Ghost, livest and reignest, forever and ever. Amen.
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father, etc. five times.


Prayer for God's Blessing on our Labors
O Lord, graciously look down upon Thy servants and upon the work of their hands, and do Thou, Who givest food to every creature, bless and preserve the fruits of the earth, that the needy may be filled with good things and that all may praise the glory of Thy bounty. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

For Vocations to the Priesthood
Antiphon. Why stand ye all the day idle, go ye into my vineyard.
V. Ask the Lord of the harvest.
R. That He send laborers into His vineyard.
Let us Pray God, who willest not the death of the sinner, but rather that he be converted and live; grant, by the intercession of blessed Mary ever Virgin and of all saints, laborers for Thy Church, fellow laborers with Christ, to spend and consume themselves for souls. Through the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Spirit, forever and ever. Amen.

Prayer Source: Blessed Be God: A Complete Catholic Prayer Book by Charles J. Callan, OP, S.T.M, P. J. Kenedy & Sons, 1961


Novena of St. Joseph

This novena prayer, although short is sufficient. It would be better of course to add, if time permits, three Hail Mary’s or say five times the Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory be to the Father, or to use some of the many well-loved novena prayers from other sources. Remember that prayers must be said with the lips in order to gain the indulgences. This novena begins on March 10 and ends on March 19.

Prayer

O dear and good St. Joseph who so lovingly cared for your little family at Nazareth, pray for all workingmen and their families. Help us all to enjoy a happy Christian family life. Be a father to us all and watch over us even as you cherished the Blessed Virgin Mary and her Holy Child. Patron of the Universal Church, pray for us.

Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, I give you my heart and soul.

Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, assist me in my last agony.

Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, may I breathe forth my soul in peace with you.

7 years for each invocation. Plenary, under usual conditions, if any one of three is said daily for a month. S. Pen., Oct. 12, 1936.

 Daily Devotions/Prayers

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood






[2]Thigpen, Paul. Manual for Spiritual Warfare. TAN Books.
[3]https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/prayers/view.cfm?id=1369

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