Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Ember Wednesday

Today's Sept 19, Ember Wednesday in the month of September (Month of the Seven Dolours [sorrows] of Our Lady) and also the blessed Feast day of St. Januarius and Companions, Martyrs. What is most beautiful and miraculous about St. Januarius is that his blood, which is preserved in a phial liquifies on this, his feast day, every year. The church where his phial is kept is a church dedicated to the Assumption of Our Lady, located in Naples, Italy.

Below is a picture of the Reliquary with the Blood of St. Januarius taken from the District of Asia's (SSPX) Rome Pilgrimage in 2000. (The link can be found here, please see the entry for Day 3: Monday, August 7 St Cajetan, Confessor)

Today, while resting from school work, I was flipping through a beautiful book I received as a Christmas present last year, The Raccolta. I found this really beautiful prayer of St. Thomas Aquinas to obtain the grace of a devout life. It was so beautiful, I could not resist not putting it up for your perusal, thus here goes:

A Prayer to Obtain the Grace of A Devout Life

Grant me, O merciful God, to desire eagerly, to investigate prudently, to acknowledge sincerely, and to fulfil perfectly those things that are pleasing to Thee, to the praise and glory of Thy holy Name.

Do Thou, my God, order my life; and grant that I may know what Thou wilt have me to do; and give me to fulfil it as is fitting and profitable to my soul.

Grant me, O Lord, my God, the grace not to faint either in prosperity or adversity, that I be not unduly lifted up by the one, nor unduly cast down by the other. Let me neither rejoice nor grieve at anything, save what either leads to Thee or leads away from Thee. Let me not desire to please anyone, nor fear to displease anyone save only Thee.

Let all things that pass away seem vile in my eyes, and let all things that are eternal be dear to me. Let me tire of that joy which is without Thee, neither permit me to desire anything that is outside Thee. Let me find joy in labour that is for Thee; and let all repose that is without Thee be tiresome to me.

Give me, my God, the grace to direct my heart towards Thee, and to grieve contiually at my failures, together with a firm purpose of amendment.

O Lord, my God, make me obedient without gainsaying, poor without despondency, chaste without stain, patient without murmuring, humble without pretense, cheerful without dissipation, serious without undue heaviness, active without instability, fearful of Thee without abjectness, truthgul without double-dealing, devoted to good works without presumption, ready to correct my neighbour without arrogance, and to edify him by word and example, without hypocrisy.

Give me, Lord God, a watchful heart which shall be distracted from Thee by no vain thoughts; give me a generous heart which shall not be drawn downward by any unworthy affection; give me an upright heart which shall not be led astray by any perverse intention; give me a stout heart which shall not be crushed by any hardship; give me a free heart which shall not be claimed as its own by any unregulated affection.

Bestow upon me, O Lord my God, an understanding that knows Thee, diligence in seeking Thee, wisdom in finding Thee, a way of life that is pleasing to Thee, perseverance that faithfully waits for Thee, and confidence that I shall embrace Thee at the last. Grant that I may be chastised here by penance, that I may make good use of Thy gifts in this life by Thy grace, and that I may partake of Thy joys in the glory of heaven: Who livest and reignest God, world without end. Amen.

(St. Thomas Aquinas)

An indulgence of 3 years once a day.

A plenary indulgence on the usual conditions, provided that the daily recitation of this prayer be continued for a month (S.C. Ind., Jan.17, 1888; S.P.Ap., July 31,1936).

Deus propitius esto mihi peccatori

Jesus, Mary, I love Thee; Save Souls!

Jesu mitis et humilis corde, Fac cor nostrum secundum Cor tuum. (ter)

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