Posted in CATHOLIC DEVOTIONS of the Month, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARIAN TITLES, NOVENAS, The IMMACULATE CONCEPTION

Novena in Preparation for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception Day Seven – 7 December

Novena in Preparation for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception
Day Seven – 7 December

By St Maximillian Kolbe OFM (1894-1941) Martyr

OPENING PRAYER

How fair you are, 0 Mary!
The original stain is not in you.
You are the boast of Jerusalem,
You are the joy of Israel.
You are the pride of our people.
You are the advocate of sinners.
0 Mary!
You are the wisest of virgins.
You are the kindest of mothers.
Pray for us.
Intercede for us with our Lord Jesus Christ.
Holy Virgin, you were spotless
from the very moment of your conception.
Because you bore His Son, pray to the Father for us.
Through the spotless conception of the Virgin, 0 God,
You made ready a dwelling place worthy of Your Son.
In anticipation of Your Son’s death,
You preserved her from every stain.
Please purify us by her intercession,
so that we might find our way to You.
We ask this through Christ our lord.
Amen

Daily Readings and Meditations for each day of the Novena are given here, followed by two closing Novena Prayers for each day.

Day 7:  The Immaculata’s Discipleshipday seven imm conception novena 7 dec 2019.jpg

Reading:
The Immaculata is God’s instrument.   With full consciousness and total willingness she allows God to govern her, she consents to His will, desires only what He desires and acts according to His will in the most perfect manner, without failing, without ever turning aside from His will.   She makes perfect use of the powers and privileges God has given her, so as to fulfil, always and in everything, whatever God wants of her, purely for love of God, One and Three.   This love of God reaches such a peak that it bears the divine fruits proper to God’s own love.   Her love for God brings her to such a level of union with Him that she becomes the Mother of God.   The Father confides to her His Son, the Son descends into her womb and the Holy Spirit fashions out of her perfectly pure body, the very body of Jesus!  (“Sketches for a book,” 1940).

Meditation:
The only way to guarantee that we are on the “right track” in our everyday activities is to listen to God’s Word and live it out.   That’s discipleship!   May the Immaculata’s discipleship of total conformity to God’s Word inspire us to be similar instruments of his will.

Closing prayers

Novena Prayer to the Immaculata

I greet you, ever-blessed Virgin,
Mother of God throne of grace,
miracle of almighty power!
I greet you, sanctuary of the most Holy Trinity
and Queen of the universe,
Mother of mercy and refuge of sinners!
Most loving Mother,
attracted by your beauty and sweetness
and by your tender compassion,
I confidently turn to you
and beg of you, to obtain for me of your dear Son
the favour I request in this novena
………………………… (here mention you request).
Obtain for me also, Queen of Heaven,
the most lively contrition for my many sins
and the grace to imitate closely,
those virtues which you practised so faithfully,
especially humility, purity and obedience.
Above all I beg you to be my mother
and protectress,
to receive me into the number of your devoted children
and to guide me from your high throne of glory.
Do not reject my petitions, Mother of mercy!
Have pity on me and do not abandon me
during life or at the moment of my death.

Daughter of the Eternal Father,
Mother of the Eternal Son,
Spouse of the Holy Spirit,
Temple of the adorable Trinity,
pray for me.
Immaculate and tender Heart of Mary,
refuge of the needy and hope of sinners,
filled with the most lively respect, love and gratitude,
I devote myself forever to your service
and I offer you my heart,
with all that I am and all that belongs to me.
Accept this offering,
sweet Queen of Heaven and earth
and obtain for me of your dear Son, Jesus Christ,
the favours I ask through your intercession in this novena.
Obtain for me also a tender, generous, constant love of God,
perfect submission to His adorable will,
the true spirit of a Christian
and the grace of final perseverance.
Amen

Closing Prayer of Identification with the Immaculata

O Immaculate Conception, Mary, my Mother,
live in me, act in me, speak in and through me.
Think your thoughts in my mind,
love through my heart.
Give me your own dispositions and feelings.
Teach, lead and guide me to Jesus.
Correct, enlighten and expand my entire personality and life.
Replace me with yourself.
Incline me to constant adoration and thanksgiving,
pray in and through me.
Let me live in you
and keep me in this union always.
Amen

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 7 December – St Ambrose, Pray for Us.

Thought for the Day – 7 December – The Memorial of St Ambrose (c 340-397)- Father and Doctor of the Church

One of Ambrose’s biographers observed that at the Last Judgment, people would still be divided between those who admired Ambrose and those who heartily disliked him.   He emerges as the man of action who cut a furrow through the lives of his contemporaries. Even royal personages were numbered among those who were to suffer crushing divine punishments for standing in Ambrose’s way.

When the Empress Justina attempted to wrest two basilicas from Ambrose’s Catholics and give them to the Arians, he dared the eunuchs of the court to execute him.   His own people rallied behind him in the face of imperial troops  . In the midst of riots, he both spurred and calmed his people with bewitching new hymns set to exciting Eastern melodies.

In his disputes with the Emperor Auxentius, he coined the principle – “The emperor is in the Church, not above the Church.”   He publicly admonished Emperor Theodosius for the massacre of 7,000 innocent people.   The emperor did public penance for his crime. This was Ambrose, the fighter sent to Milan as Roman governor and chosen while yet a catechumen to be the people’s bishop.

There is yet another side of Ambrose—one which influenced Augustine of Hippo, whom Ambrose converted.   Ambrose was a passionate little man with a high forehead, a long melancholy face and great eyes.   We can picture him as a frail figure clasping the codex of sacred Scripture.   This was the Ambrose of aristocratic heritage and learning.

Augustine found the oratory of Ambrose less soothing and entertaining but far more learned than that of other contemporaries.   Ambrose’s sermons were often modelled on Cicero and his ideas betrayed the influence of contemporary thinkers and philosophers. He had no scruples in borrowing at length from pagan authors.   He gloried in the pulpit in his ability to parade his spoils—“gold of the Egyptians”—taken over from the pagan philosophers.

His sermons, his writings and his personal life reveal him as an otherworldly man involved in the great issues of his day.   Humanity for Ambrose was, above all, spirit.   In order to think rightly of God and the human soul, the closest thing to God, no material reality at all was to be dwelt upon.   He was an enthusiastic champion of consecrated virginity.

The influence of Ambrose on Augustine seems to be universally accepted.   The Confessions reveal some manly, brusque encounters between Ambrose and Augustine but there can be no doubt, of Augustine’s profound esteem for the learned bishop.glorious fathers st augustine and ambrose pray for us 7 dec 2019.jpg

Neither is there any doubt that Saint Monica loved Ambrose as an angel of God who uprooted her son from his former ways and led him to his convictions about Christ.   It was Ambrose, after all, who placed his hands on the shoulders of the naked Augustine as he descended into the baptismal fountain to put on Christ.

Ambrose exemplifies for us the truly catholic character of Christianity.   He is a man steeped in the learning, law and culture of the ancients and of his contemporaries.   Yet, in the midst of active involvement in this world, this thought runs through Ambrose’s life and preaching – The hidden meaning of the Scriptures calls our spirit to rise to another world.

St Ambrose, Pray for Us!st ambrose pray for us 7 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Quote/s of the Day – 7 December – Our ‘Daily Bread’

Quote/s of the Day – 7 December – The Memorial of St Ambrose (c 340-397) Father and Doctor of the Church and St Maria Giuseppa Rosello FdM (1811-1880)

“Let your door stand open
to receive Him,
unlock your soul to Him,
offer Him a welcome in your mind
and then you will see
the riches of simplicity,
the treasures of peace,
the joy of grace.
Throw wide the gate of your heart,
stand before the sun of the everlasting light.”let-your-door-stand-open-st-ambrose-7-dec-2017 and 2019

“If it is “daily bread,”
why do you take it once a year? . . .
Take daily what is to profit you daily.
Live in such a way that you may deserve
to receive it daily.
He who does not deserve to receive it daily,
does not deserve to receive it once a year.”

St Ambrose (c 340-397)
Father and Doctor of the Churchif-it-ias-daily-st-ambrose-7-dec-2017 and 2019

“Go to Jesus.
He loves you
and is waiting for you,
to give you many graces.
He is on the Altar,
surrounded by angels adoring and praying.
Let them make some room for you
and join them in doing what they do.”

St Maria Giuseppa Rosello (1811-1880)go to jesus he loves you and is waiting for you on the altar - st maria guiseppa rosello 7 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in QUOTES of the SAINTS, The WORD, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, C S LEWIS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, DIVINE MERCY, ADVENT REFLECTIONS

Advent Reflection – 7 December – ‘He had compassion for them…’

Advent Reflection – 7 December – Saturday of the First week of Advent, Year A – Readings: Isaiah 30:19-21, 23-26, Psalm 147:1-6, Matthew 9:35–10:1, 5-8

Let us adore the Lord, the king who is to come.

When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. … Matthew 9:36matthew 9 36 when he saw the crowds he had compassion 7 dec 2019

REFLECTION – “A person is counselled to his face, so to speak, when he is created for righteousness and receives the precepts of rectitude.   When he despises these precepts, it is as if he is turning his back to his Creator’s face.   But He still follows behind us and counsels us, that we have despised Him but He still does not cease to call us.   We turn our backs on His face, so to speak, when we reject His words, when we trample His commandments underfoot but He who sees that we reject Him, still calls out to us by His commandments and waits for us by His patience, stands behind us and calls us back when we have turned away.” … St Gregory the Great (540-604) Father & Doctor of the Church – Forty Gospel Homilies, 34

MEDITATION – “The great thing to remember is that, though our feelings come and go, His love for us does not.   It is not wearied by our sins or our indifference and, therefore, it is quite relentless in it’s determination, that we shall be cured of those sins, at whatever cost to us, at whatever cost to Him.” … Prof C S Lewis (1898-1963)

ADVENT ACTION – Freely you have received, freely give – forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.   Let us offer our hand to those who hurt us.

PRAYER – Lord, to free man from his sinful state, You sent Your only Son into this world. Grant to us, who in faith and love, wait for His coming, Your gift of grace and the reward of true freedom.    Be born in us O Lord!    We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.he still follows behind us and counsels us - st gregory the great - sat of the first week of advent be born in us o lord 7 dec 2019

Posted in ADVENT PRAYERS, CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, HYMNS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, The NATIVITY of JESUS

Our Morning Offering – 7 December – Saviour of the Nations, Come – St Ambrose’s Advent Hymn

Our Morning Offering – 7 December – The Memorial of St Ambrose (c 340-397)- Father and Doctor of the Church

Veni Redemptor gentium
Saviour of the Nations, Come
St Ambrose’s Advent Hymn

Saviour of the nations, come;
Virgin’s Son, here make Thy home!
Marvel now, O heaven and earth,
That the Lord chose such a birth.

Not by human flesh and blood;
By the Spirit of our God
Was the Word of God made flesh,
Woman’s offspring, pure and fresh.

Wondrous birth! O wondrous Child
Of the virgin undefiled!
Though by all the world disowned,
Still to be in heaven enthroned.

From the Father forth He came
And returneth to the same,
Captive leading death and hell
High the song of triumph swell!

Thou, the Father’s only Son,
Hast over sin the victory won.
Boundless shall Thy kingdom be;
When shall we its glories see?

Brightly doth Thy manger shine,
Glorious is its light divine.
Let not sin o’ercloud this light;
Ever be our faith thus bright.

Praise to God the Father sing,
Praise to God the Son, our King,
Praise to God the Spirit be
Ever and eternally.veni-redemptor-gentium-st-ambrose-advent-him-saviour-of-the-nations-come-7-dec-2017 and 7 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 7 December – St Maria Giuseppa Rosello FdM (1811-1880)

Saint of the Day – 7 December – St Maria Giuseppa Rosello FdM (1811-1880) Religious sister and Founder of the Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy.   Also known as St Maria Joseph Rosello – Born as Benedetta Rosello on 27 May 1811 at Albissola Marina, Liguria, diocese of Savona, Italy and died on 7 December 1880 (aged 69) in Savona, Italy. She is the Patron of the Order she founded.

Three hundred years after the apparitions of Our Lady of Mercy on the hillsides of Savona, Italy in 1536.   That same city was the scene of another important event – the founding of the Congregation of the Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy in 1837.st-maria-joseph-rossello

Chosen by God to accomplish this task was an unassuming young woman named Benedetta Rossello, today invoked as Saint Maria Joseph Rossello.   Pope Pius XII raised her to the altars of sainthood on 12 June 1949.

One of nine children, her father was a potter.   Born in poverty, she suffered from poor health all her life.   Pious from early youth she tried to enter a religious order but was refused admission due to her health and lack of dowry.   The pious, childless couple she worked for could have given her a dowry but would not because they did not want to lose her as member of their family.   Benedetta was devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary which led her to becoming a member of the Third Order of Saint Francis at the age of sixteen.   Benedetta would become the sole support of her family after the death of her mother and second brother and her sister, Josephine and then her father too.

“Oh, that I could find a generous person who would care for these neglected children of my flock.”   These were the words of Bishop De Mari of Savona one day as he came upon a group of uncouth girls playing on the street.   Benedetta heard them as words from heaven and offered her services to the Bishop immediately.

Bishop DeMari was quick to see in the young woman before him a truly apostolic and generous person whom God had destined for great work.   He did not hesitate to confide his plans to her, as he realised that God had sent Benedetta to him.st-maria josepha-rosello

On 10 August 1837, Benedetta Rossello and three companions who shared her vision laid the foundation of a new religious family in the Church – the Congregation of the Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy.   They began in a small unpretentious house in the city of Savona on a street called Vico del Vento.

After a brief but intense period of preparation, the Bishop presented a religious habit to each young woman as well as a new name to symbolise their consecration to God and His service.   Benedetta became Sister Maria Joseph because Saint Joseph was to be her protector, provider and father throughout her whole life.   Two years later, the new Sisters sealed their consecration to God by taking the three vows – poverty, chastity and obedience.   These new Religious – the first Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy – dedicated themselves wholeheartedly to the work for which God had called the new Congregation to life – the education of youth, the care of the sick and all the works of mercy.

The Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy spread rapidly throughout Italy and during the lifetime of the Foundress, even to South America.   In 1875, Saint Maria Joseph Rossello sent 15 Sisters to Buenos Aires, Argentina and there too, they spread far and wide, now having foundations in Brazil, Chile, Uruguay, Peru and many parts of Argentina.

In 1919, the Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy arrived in North America in response to an appeal similar to that of Bishop DeMari.   They were requested to open a Social and Parish Mission Center in Springfield, MA, principally to offer religious Instruction to the children.   Thus the mission and spirit of St Maria Joseph Rossello was extended to the United States.

Presently, the Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy minister in 19 countries on 5 continents. They may be found in Italy, Africa, India, Germany, Romania as well as North and South America and the Caribbean Islands.st maria joseph roselli

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 7 December

St Ambrose (c 340-397) – Father and Doctor of the Church (Memorial)
https://anastpaul.com/2018/12/07/saint-of-the-day-7-december-st-ambrose-c-340-397-father-and-doctor-of-the-church-2/
And More:
https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/12/07/more-on-todays-saint-st-ambrose-c340-397-father-and-doctor-of-the-church/

St Agatho of Alexandria
St Anianas of Chartres
St Antonius of Siya
St Athenodoros of Mesopotamia
St Buithe of Monasterboice
St Burgundofara
St Charles Garnier
St Diuma
St Geretrannus of Bayeux
Bl Humbert of Clairvaux
St John the Silent
St Martin of Saujon
St Maria Giuseppa Rosello FdM (1811-1880)
St Nilus of Stolbensk
St Polycarp of Antioch
St Sabinus of Spoleto
St Servus the Martyr
St Theodore of Antioch
St Urban of Teano
St Victor of Piacenza