A Method of Hearing Mass Spiritually
A METHOD OF HEARING THE MASS Spiritually,
WHICH MAY BE USED BY THOSE WHO ARE PREVENTED FROM GOING TO CHURCH.
I BELIEVE, Lord Jesus, that in the Last Supper Thou didst offer up a true sacrifice; I believe it because Thou hast made it known to us through the Catholic Church, which from the apostles times has constantly taught it to us. Since Thou didst command the apostles and the priests ordained by them, to do the same till the end of time, I therefore offer to Thee, with the priest, this holy sacrifice of the Mass (which I believe to be one with that offered on Mount Calvary), to Thy honor and glory, in acknowledgment of my most bounden service, in thanksgiving for the innumerable benefits which Thou hast conferred upon me and upon the whole world, in satisfaction for my sins and the sins of all mankind, and for obtaining the grace of perfect contrition for my sins. I also offer to Thee this holy Mass for my friends, benefactors, for those for whom I am bound, and for whom Thou wiliest me to pray. I also offer it for my enemies, that they may be converted, for all the faithful departed, particularly for my parents and relatives, and for the welfare of all Christendom.
I. HEARTFELT DESIRE TO PARTICIPATE IN THE HOLY SACRIFICE.
II. CONTRITION FOR SINS, WITH FAITH AND CONFIDENCE IN JESUS CHRIST, AND AN OFFERING OF HIS PRECIOUS MERITS.
Holy Father, I confess with sorrow that I have seldom served Thee with an undivided heart, but rather have often offended Thee, and by my slothfulness and neglect have brought upon myself infinitely great guilt before Thee. I therefore take refuge in the merits of Thy beloved Son, now present upon the altar, Who so freely commends and imparts to us His grace and favor. In the holy sacrifice of the Mass Jesus offers to Thee, for me, the highest veneration and love, the most perfect praise, the most hearty thanksgiving, and the most kind expiation. For the perfect forgiveness of my sins, O heavenly Father, I offer to Thee the whole suffering and death of Jesus Christ, which now, in an unbloody manner, is renewed upon the altar. O most benign Father, Thy Son has suffered and died even for me, a poor sinner. With thankful love I bring before Thee as a precious and pleasing offering, the infinite merits of His suffering and death. I firmly trust that, on account of this inestimable sacrifice of Thy Son, Thou wilt not regard my guilt, and that Thou wilt increase in me Thy graces. Amen. O Father of mercies, and God of all consolation, to Thee I turn for help and grace. Graciously look upon my misery and wretchedness, and let my supplications come before Thee. That I may the more surely be heard by Thee, I appear before the throne of Thy grace, which for our salvation, is set up in the holy sacrifice of the Mass, where the innocent Lamb of God is mysteriously offered up to Thee, holy Father, Almighty God, for the remission of our sins. Regard, I beseech Thee, the innocence of this holy sacrifice, and for the sake thereof extend to me Thy mercy. O my Savior, how great is Thy love for me which, to make satisfaction for my sins, and to gain me the grace of Thy Father, impelled Thee to endure for me such bitter pains, and even death itself. Oh, how great is yet Thy love for me, which causes Thee, in every holy Mass to renew, in an unbloody manner, Thy death of propitiation, in order to apply and communicate to me Thy merits. With my whole heart I thank Thee for Thy great love, and from the depths of my soul I beseech Thee to make me a partaker of the fruits of it, and to strengthen and confirm me by the grace of the Holy Ghost, that I may detest sin and all unholy living, that I may crucify my flesh, with all its passions, deny myself, and follow in Thy footsteps, that all my thoughts and words, all that I do or leave un done, may be a living service of God, and a sacrifice well pleasing to Him. As Thou hast offered up Thyself to Thy heavenly Father, so take me also in the arms of Thy love and mercy, and present me, a poor erring sinner, as an offering to Thy Father, and let me no more be separated from His love. Amen.
III. ADORATION OF THE MOST HOLY BODY AND BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST, UNDER THE APPEARANCES OF BREAD AND WINE.
O most holy Jesus, before Thee the heavenly choirs kneel and adore; with them I lift up my voice and cry. Holy, holy, holy, art Thou, O Lord of hosts. Heaven and earth are full of Thy grace and glory. Thou art present, O Jesus, under the appearances of bread and wine. Hear, O hear my prayer. I strike my breast and confess my unworthiness; but with firm confidence I implore Thee, O Jesus, be merciful to me. O most benign Jesus, forgive me my sins. O holy blood, wash me from my sins. O precious blood of Jesus, O blood of Jesus, rich in grace, cry out to Heaven for mercy upon me. Most holy God, receive this precious blood, together with the love through which it was shed ; receive it as an offering of my love and thankfulness, for the greatest glory of Thy name ; for the forgiveness of my sins ; in satisfaction of the punishments which I have deserved ; for the washing away of the stains of my guilt, as reparation for all my neglects, and as amends for all the sins which I have committed through ignorance or frailty; receive it also as a sacrifice for the consolation of the afflicted; for the conversion of sinners; for the recovery of the sick and suffering; for the strengthening of those who draw near to death; for the refreshment, purification, and deliverance of the souls of the departed in purgatory. Amen.
IV. UNSHAKEN CONFIDENCE IN JESUS CHRIST.
To Thee, O most benign Jesus, I lift up my eyes and my heart. Oh, turn upon me Thy gracious countenance, and Thy true love. Behold, O Lord, my manifest need, and the great danger of my soul. Oh, receive me, Thou Who art my only true mediator and helper. Be Thou, through the holy sacrifice of the Mass, my salvation, and obtain for me the entire remission of my sins. Oh, represent to Thy Father how cruelly Thou wast scourged, crowned, crucified, and put to death for us, and thereby reconcile with the strict justice of God me, a miserable sinner. Amen. Our Father. Hail Mary.
V. HE WHO ASKS IN THE NAME OF JESUS SHALL RECEIVE.
O Lamb of God, Who suffered for us miserable sinners, have mercy upon me, and offer up to the Father Thy passion for the forgiveness of my sins. O Lamb of God, Who died for us miserable sinners, have mercy upon me, and offer up to God Thy death in satisfaction for my sins! O Lamb of God, Who didst sacrifice Thyself for us miserable sinners, have mercy upon me, and offer up Thy holy blood to the Father for the cleansing of my soul. Heavenly Father, I offer to Thee this precious and most worthy oblation. My sins are more in number than the hairs of my head, but, O just and merciful God, lay this precious offering in the one scale and my sins in the other, and that will far outweigh my guilt. O merciful, O holy God, give me Thy blessing before I end my prayer, and through this blessing let me obtain grace at once to begin to amend my life, and to renounce whatever is sinful and displeasing to thee. Support me in my weakness; strengthen me when temptations assail me, and let me never forget that Thou art near me. O precious day! but perhaps the last of my life. O happy day! if it shall make me better. Holy Mother of God, Mary, holy angels and friends of God, pray for me and lead me in the way of truth. O God, grant Thy love to the living, and Thy peace to the dead. Amen.