|Devotion to Our Lady||
YOUR DAILY ROSARY MEDITATIONS
THE JOYFUL MYSTERIES
Ten Scriptural quotes, one for each Hail Mary.
Say the appropriate one before saying the Hail Mary.
1. THE AGONY OF LORD IN THE GARDEN
1. And a hymn being said, going out, He went, according to His custom, to the Mount of Olives. He went forth over the brook Cedron and His disciples also followed Him. Then Jesus came with them into a country place, a farm which is called Gethsemane; and He said to His disciples: “Sit you here, till I go yonder and pray!” And taking with Him Peter and James and John, the two sons of Zebedee, He began to fear and to be heavy, and grow sorrowful and to sad. Then He said to them: “My soul is sorrowful even unto death: stay you here, and watch with Me!”
2. And when He was gone forward a little, and was withdrawn away from them a stone’s cast, He fell upon His face, flat on the ground; and He prayed, that if it might be, the hour might pass from Him, saying: “My Father, if it be possible, let this chalice pass from Me--remove this chalice from Me! Nevertheless, not My will, but Thine be done!”
3. And He cometh to His disciples, and findeth them asleep, and He saith to Peter: “What! Could you not watch one hour with Me? Watch ye, and pray that ye enter not into temptation! The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh weak!”
4. Again the second time, He went and prayed, saying: “My Father, if this chalice may not pass away, but I must drink it, Thy will be done!” And He cometh again and findeth them sleeping: for their eyes were heavy and they knew not what to answer Him.
5. And leaving them, He went again: and He prayed the third time, saying the saying the same words. And there appeared to him an angel from Heaven, strengthening Him. And being in an agony, He prayed the longer. And His sweat became as drops of blood, trickling down upon the ground. And when He rose up from prayer, and was come to His disciples, He found them sleeping for sorrow and saith to them: “Sleep ye now and take your rest! It is enough! Behold the hour is at hand, and the Son of man shall be betrayed into the hands of sinners! Rise! Let us go! Behold he is at hand that will betray Me!”
6. And while He was yet speaking, behold Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and clubs, sent from the chief priests and the ancients of the people. Judas, who betrayed Him, knew the place; because Jesus had often resorted thither together with His disciples. Judas therefore having received a band of soldiers and servants from the chief priests and the Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons. And he that betrayed Him, gave them a sign, saying: “Whomsoever I shall kiss, that is He, hold Him fast and lead Him away carefully!” And forthwith coming to Jesus, immediately going up to Him, he said: “Hail, Rabbi!” And he kissed Him. And Jesus said to him: “Friend, whereto art thou come? Judas, dost thou betray the Son of man with a kiss?” Then they came up, and laid hands on Jesus, and held Him.
7. Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon Him, went forth, and said to them: “Whom seek ye?” They answered Him: “Jesus of Nazareth!” Jesus saith to them: “I am He!” And Judas also, who betrayed Him, stood with them. As soon therefore as He had said to them: “I am He”, they went backward, and fell to the ground. Again therefore He asked them: “Whom seek ye?” And they said: “Jesus of Nazareth!” Jesus answered: “I have told you that I am He! If therefore you seek Me, let these go their way!” That the word might be fulfilled which he said: “Of them whoT thou hast given Me, I have not lost any one”
8. And they that were about Him, seeing what would follow, said to Him: “Lord, shall we strike with the sword?” And behold one of them that were with Jesus, Simon Peter, having a sword, stretching forth his hand, drew out his sword and struck the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear. And the name of the servant was Malchus. Then Jesus saith to him: “Put up thy sword into the scabbard: for all that take the sword shall perish with the sword! The chalice which my Father hath given Me, shall I not drink it? Thinkest thou that I cannot ask My Father, and He will give Me presently more than twelve legions of angels? How then shall the Scriptures be fulfilled, that so it must be done? Suffer ye thus far!” But when Jesus had touched his ear, He healed him.
9. And Jesus said to the chief priests, and magistrates of the temple, and the ancients, that were come unto Him: “You are come out as it were to a robber with swords and clubs to apprehend Me! I sat daily with you, teaching in the Temple, and you laid not hands on Me! But this is your hour, and the power of darkness!” Now all this was done, that the Scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then the disciples all leaving Him, fled away. And a certain young man followed Him, having a linen cloth cast about his naked body; and they laid hold on him. But he, casting off the linen cloth, fled from them naked.
10. Then the band and the tribune, and the servants of the Jews apprehending and holding Jesus, took Jesus, bound Him and led Him away to Annas first, for he was father in law to Caiphas, who was the high priest of that year, and then to Caiphas, where the scribes and the ancients were assembled. But Peter followed afar off.
2. OUR LORD IS SCOURGED AT THE PILLAR
1. And when morning was come, all chief priests holding a consultation with the ancients of the people and the scribes and the whole council, took counsel against Jesus, that they might put Him to death. And the whole multitude of them rising up, binding Jesus, led Him away from Caiphas to the governor’s hall and delivered Him to Pontius Pilate the governor. They went not into the hall, that they might not be defiled, but that they might eat the Pasch.
2. Pilate therefore went out to them, and said: “What accusation bring you against this Man?”
They answered, and said to him: “If He were not a malefactor, we would not have delivered Him up to thee!” And they began to accuse Him, saying: “We have found this Man perverting our nation, and forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, and saying that He is Christ the king!”
3. And when He was accused by the chief priests and ancients, He answered nothing.
Then Pilate saith to Him: “Dost not thou hear how great testimonies they allege against Thee?”
And He answered him to never a word; so that the governor wondered.
And Pilate again asked Him, saying: “Answerest thou nothing? Behold in how many things they accuse Thee!”
But Jesus still answered nothing; so that Pilate wondered exceedingly.
4. Pilate therefore said to them: “Take Him you, and judge Him according to your law!”
The Jews therefore said to him: “It is not lawful for us to put any man to death!” That the word of Jesus might be fulfilled, which He said, signifying what death He should die. But they were more earnest, saying: “He stirreth up the people, teaching throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee to this place.”
But Pilate hearing “Galilee”, asked if the Man were of Galilee. And when he understood that He was of Herod’ss jurisdiction, he sent Him away to Herod, who was also himself at Jerusalem, in those days.
5. And Herod, seeing Jesus, was very glad; for he was desirous of a long time to see Him, because he had heard many things of Him; and he hoped to see some sign wrought by Him. And he questioned Him in many words. But He answered him nothing. And the chief priests and the scribes stood by, earnestly accusing Him. And Herod, with his army, set Him at nought, and mocked Him, putting on Him a white garment, and sent Him back to Pilate. And Herod and Pilate were made friends, that same day; for before they were enemies one to another.
6. But they cried again, saying: “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!”
And he said to them the third time: “Why, what evil hath this Man done? I find no cause of death in Him. I will chastise Him therefore, and let Him go!”
But they cried again, saying: “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!”
7. Pilate therefore went into the hall again, and called Jesus. And Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked Him, saying: “Art Thou the king of the Jews?”
Jesus answered: “Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or have others told it thee of Me?”
Pilate answered: “Am I a Jew? Thy own nation, and the chief priests, have delivered Thee up to me! What hast Thou done?”
8. Jesus answered: “My kingdom is not of this world. If My Kingdom were of this world, My servants would certainly strive that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now My Kingdom is not from hence.”
Pilate therefore said to Him: “Art Thou a king then?”
Jesus answered: “Thou sayest that I am a king. For this was I born, and for this came I into the world; that I should give testimony to the truth. Every one that is of the truth, heareth My voice!”
Pilate saith to Him: “What is truth?”
9. And when he said this, he went out again to the Jews, and saith to them: “I find no cause in Him! But you have a custom that I should release one unto you at the Pasch: will you, therefore, that I release unto you the King of the Jews?”
Then they all cried again, saying: “Not this Man, but Barabbas!” Now Barabbas was a robber.
Pilate said to them: “What shall I do then with Jesus that is called Christ?”
They all said: “Let Him be crucified!”
The governor said to them: “Why, what evil hath He done?”
But they cried out the more, saying: “Let Him be crucified!”
And the whole people answering, said: “His blood be upon us and our children!”
10. But they were instant with loud voices, requiring that He might be crucified; and their voices prevailed. And Pilate seeing that he prevailed nothing, but that rather a tumult was made; taking water washed his hands before the people, saying: “I am innocent of the blood of this just Man; look you to it!” And Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they required. And he released unto them Barabbas, who for murder and sedition, had been cast into prison, whom they had desired; but he had Jesus scourged and delivered up to their will.
3. OUR LORD IS CROWNED WITH THORNS
1. Then the soldiers of the governor led Jesus away into the hall, the court of the palace, and they called together unto Him the whole band; and stripping Him, they put a scarlet cloak about Him.
2. And platting a crown of thorns, they put it upon His head, and a reed in His right hand.
3. And they began to salute Him, bowing the knee before Him, they adored Him. And they mocked Him, saying: “Hail, King of the Jews!”
4. And they took the reed and struck His head with the reed. And they did spit on Him and they gave Him blows.
5. And after they had mocked Him, they took off the purple cloak from Him, and put on Him His own garments, and led Him back to Pilate.
6. Pilate therefore went forth again, and said to them: “Behold, I bring Him forth unto you, that you may know that I find no cause in Him!”
Jesus therefore came forth, bearing the crown of thorns. And he said to them: “Behold the Man!”
When the chief priests, therefore, and the servants, had seen Him, they cried out, saying: “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!”
7. Pilate said to them: “Take Him you, and crucify Him! For I find no cause in Him!”
The Jews answered him: “We have a law; and according to the law He ought to die, because He made Himself the Son of God!”
When Pilate therefore had heard this saying, he feared the more. And he entered into the hall again, and he said to Jesus: “Whence art thou?”
But Jesus gave him no answer.
8. Pilate therefore said to Him: “Speakest Thou not to me? Knowest thou not that I have power to crucify Thee, and I have power to release Thee?”
Jesus answered: “Thou shouldst not have any power against Me, unless it were given thee from above. Therefore, he that hath delivered Me to thee, hath the greater sin!”
9. And from henceforth Pilate sought to release Him. But the Jews cried out, saying: “If thou release this Man, thou art not Caesar’s friend! For whosoever maketh Himself a king, speaketh against Caesar!”
Now when Pilate had heard these words, he brought Jesus forth, and sat down in the judgment seat, in the place that is called Lithostrotos, and in Hebrew Gabbatha. And it was the Parasceve of the Pasch, about the sixth hour, and he said to the Jews: “Behold your King!”
But they cried out: “Away with Him! Away with Him! Crucify Him!”
10. Pilate said to them: “Shall I crucify your King?”
The chief priests answered: “We have no king but Caesar!”
Then therefore he delivered Him to them to be crucified. And they took Jesus, and led Him forth.
4. OUR LORD CARRIES HIS CROSS TO CALVARY
“And bearing His own cross, He went forth to that place which is called Calvary, but in Hebrew, Golgotha” (John 19:17).
1. And after they had mocked Him, they took off the cloak from Him, and put on Him His own garments, and led Him away to crucify Him.
2. And bearing His own cross, He went forth to that place which is called Calvary, but in Hebrew Golgotha.
3. And going out, they found a man of Cyrene, named Simon. And they forced Simon, who passed by, coming out of the country, the father of Alexander and of Rufus, to take up His cross.
4. And there followed Him a great multitude of people, and of women, who bewailed and lamented Him.
5. But Jesus turning to them, said: “Daughters of Jerusalem! Weep not over Me; but weep for yourselves, and for your children! For behold, the days shall come, wherein they will say: ‘Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that have not borne, and the paps that have not given suck!’”
6. Jesus said to them: “Then shall they begin to say to the mountains: ‘Fall upon us!’ and to the hills: ‘Cover us!’ For if in the green wood they do these things, what shall be done in the dry?”
7. And there were also two other malefactors led with Him to be put to death.
8. Pilate wrote a title also, and he put it upon the cross. And the writing was: “Jesus of Nazareth, The King of the Jews”.
9. This title therefore many of the Jews did read: because the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city: and it was written in Hebrew, in Greek, and in Latin.
10. Then the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate: “Write not, ‘The King of the Jews’; but that He said, ‘I am the King of the Jews’!” Pilate answered: “What I have written, I have written!”
5. THE CRUCIFIXION AND DEATH OF OUR LORD
1. And His parents went every year to Jerusalem, at the solemn day of the Pasch.
2. And when He was twelve years old, they going up into Jerusalem, according to the custom of the feast.
3. And having fulfilled the days, when they returned, the Child Jesus remained in Jerusalem; and His parents knew it not.
4. And thinking that He was in the company, they came a day’s journey, and sought Him among their kinsfolk and acquaintances. And not finding Him, they returned into Jerusalem, seeking Him.
5. And it came to pass, that, after three days, they found Him in the Temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard Him were astonished at His wisdom and His answers. And seeing Him, they wondered.
6. And His mother said to Him: “Son, why hast Thou done so to us? Behold Thy father and I have sought Thee sorrowing!”
7. And He said to them: “How is it that you sought Me? Did you not know, that I must be about My Father’s business?” And they understood not the word that He spoke unto them.
8. And He went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them.
9. And His mother kept all these words in her heart.
10. And Jesus advanced in wisdom, and age, and grace with God and men.
VARIOUS LITANIES IN HONOR OF OUR LADY
Litany of Loreto Introduction
This litany to the Blessed Virgin Mary was composed during the Middle Ages. The place of honor it now holds in the life of the Church is due to its faithful use at the shrine of the Holy House at Loreto. It was definitely approved by Sixtus V in 1587, and all other Marian litanies were suppressed, at least for public use. Its titles and invocations set before us Mary's exalted privileges, her holiness of life, her amiability and power, her motherly spirit and queenly majesty.
The principle that has been followed in their interpretation is the one enunciated by the same Pius IX: "God enriched her so wonderfully from the treasury of His divinity, far beyond all angels and saints with the abundance of all heavenly gifts, that she . . .should show forth such fullness of innocence and holiness, than which a greater under God is unthinkable and which, beside God, no one can even conceive in thought. Hence, whatever virtue and holiness is found in angels and saints must be present in Mary in an immeasurably higher degree.
The Litany of Loreto
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost, Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, Have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, Pray for us.
Holy Mother of God, Pray for us.
Holy Virgin of virgins, Pray for us. .
Mother of Christ, Pray for us.
Mother of divine grace, Pray for us.
Mother most pure, Pray for us.
Mother most chaste, Pray for us.
Mother inviolate, Pray for us.
Mother undefiled, Pray for us.
Mother most amiable, Pray for us.
Mother most admirable, Pray for us.
Mother of good counsel, Pray for us.
Mother of our Creator, Pray for us.
Mother of our Savior, Pray for us.
Mother of the Church, Pray for us.
Virgin most prudent, Pray for us.
Virgin most venerable, Pray for us.
Virgin most renowned, Pray for us.
Virgin most powerful, Pray for us.
Virgin most merciful, Pray for us.
Virgin most faithful, Pray for us.
Mirror of justice, Pray for us.
Seat of wisdom, Pray for us.
Cause of our joy, Pray for us.
Spiritual vessel, Pray for us.
Vessel of honor, Pray for us.
Singular vessel of devotion, Pray for us.
Mystical rose, Pray for us.
Tower of David, Pray for us. .
Tower of ivory, Pray for us.
House of gold, Pray for us.
Ark of the covenant, Pray for us.
Gate of Heaven, Pray for us.
Morning star, Pray for us.
Health of the sick, Pray for us.
Refuge of sinners, Pray for us.
Comforter of the afflicted, Pray for us.
Help of Christians, Pray for us.
Queen of angels, Pray for us.
Queen of patriarchs, Pray for us.
Queen of prophets, Pray for us.
Queen of apostles, Pray for us.
Queen of martyrs, Pray for us.
Queen of confessors, Pray for us.
Queen of virgins, Pray for us.
Queen of all saints, Pray for us.
Queen conceived without Original Sin, Pray for us.
Queen assumed into Heaven, Pray for us.
Queen of the most Holy Rosary, Pray for us.
Queen of peace, Pray for us.
Lamb of God, Who take away the sins of the world,
Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who take away the sins of the world,
Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who take away the sins of the world,
Have mercy on us.
V. Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Let us pray:
Grant, we beseech Thee, O Lord God, that we Thy servants may enjoy perpetual health of mind and body, and by the glorious intercession of the Blessed Mary, ever Virgin, be delivered from present sorrow and enjoy everlasting happiness. Through Christ Our Lord.
START OR END YOUR DAILY ROSARY WITH ONE OF THESE PRAYERS TO OUR LADY OF THE ROSARY
Queen of the most Holy Rosary, in these times of such brazen impiety, manifest thy power with the signs of thine ancient victories, and from thy throne, whence thou dost dispense pardon and graces, mercifully regard the Church of thy Son, His Vicar on earth, and every order of clergy and laity, who are sorely oppressed in the mighty conflict. Do thou, who art the powerful vanquisher of all heresies, hasten the hour of mercy, even though the hour of God's justice is every day provoked by the countless sins of men. For me who am the least of men, kneeling before thee in supplication, do thou obtain the grace I need to live righteously upon earth and to reign among the just in Heaven, meanwhile, in company with all faithful Christians throughout the world, I salute thee and acclaim thee as Queen of the most Holy Rosary: Queen of the most holy Rosary, pray for us.
O Virgin Mary, grant that the recitation of thy Rosary may be for me each day, in the midst of my manifold duties, a bond of unity in my actions, a tribute of filial piety, a sweet refreshment, an encouragement to walk joyfully along the path of duty. Grant, above all, O Virgin Mary, that the study of thy fifteen mysteries may form in my soul, little by little, a luminous atmosphere, pure, strengthening, and fragrant, which may penetrate my understanding, my will, my heart, my memory, my imagination, my whole being. So shall I acquire the habit of praying while I work, without the aid of formal prayers, by interior acts of admiration and of supplication, or by aspirations of love. I ask this of thee, O Queen of the Holy Rosary, through Saint Dominic, thy son of predilection, the renowned preacher of thy mysteries, and the faithful imitator of thy virtues. Amen.
THE 15 PROMISES OF OUR LADY TO THOSE WHO RECITE THE ROSARY
Let us now reflect on each of these promises. We shall take them one at a time.
At the beginning of this month of the Holy Rosary, it is well worth reminding ourselves of the promises that Our Lady made to those who would pray the Holy Rosary. These promises are not guaranteed to those who rarely pray the Rosary, but they require, as Our Lady says, that the Rosary be recited faithfully, which we can understand to mean regularly and not rarely. The reflection and commentary is posted in blue.
1. Whoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall receive signal graces.
2. I promise my special protection and the greatest graces, to all who shall recite the Rosary.
3. The Rosary shall be a powerful armor against Hell, it will destroy vice, decrease sin, and defeat heresies.
4. It will cause virtue and good works to flourish; it will obtain for souls the abundant mercy of God; it will withdraw the hearts of men from the love of the world and its vanities, and will lift them to the desire of eternal things. Oh, that souls would sanctify themselves by this means!
5. The soul which recommends itself to me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall not perish.
6. Whoever shall recite the Rosary devoutly, applying himself to the consideration of its sacred mysteries, shall never be conquered by misfortune. God will not chastise him in His justice; he shall not perish by an unprovided death; and, if he be just, he shall remain in the grace of God, and become worthy of eternal life.
7. Whoever shall have a true devotion for the Rosary, shall not die without the Sacraments of the Church.
8. Those who are faithful in reciting the Rosary shall have, during their life and at their death, the light of God and the plenitude of His graces; and, at the moment of death, they shall participate in the merits of the saints in paradise.
Our Lady highlights the great quantity of graces obtain through praying the Rosary, which assist us during life and at the moment of death. The merits of the Saints are the gift of God's rewards to those persons who responded to His Grace that they obtained during life, and so Our Lady indicates that She will provide a share of that to us at death. With this promise and #7 above, Our Lady is providing the means for the person to have a very holy death.
St. Louis de Montfort, in his book The Secret of the Rosary, writes: “The Hail Mary, the Rosary, is the prayer and the infallible touchstone by which I can tell those who are led by the Spirit of God from those who are deceived by the devil. I have known souls who seemed to soar like eagles to the heights by their sublime contemplation and yet were pitifully led astray by the devil. I only found out how wrong they were when I learned that they scorned the Hail Mary and the Rosary, which they considered as being far beneath them. The Hail Mary is a blessed dew that falls from Heaven upon the souls of the predestinate. It gives them a marvelous spiritual fertility so that they can grow in all virtues. The more the garden of the soul is watered by this prayer, the more enlightened in mind we become, the more zealous in heart, the stronger against all our enemies.”
St. Louis continues: “Are you groping in the darkness of ignorance and error? Go to Mary and say to her, “Hail Mary,” which means “Hail, thou who art bathed in the light of the Sun of Justice,” and she will give you a share in her light. Have you strayed from the path leading to Heaven? Then call on Mary, for her name means “Star of the Sea, the Polar Star which guides the ships of our souls during the voyage of this life,” and she will guide you to the harbor of eternal salvation … . You will find it a real Jacob’s ladder with fifteen rungs by which you will go from virtue to virtue and from light to light.”
St. Dominic had a cousin named Don Perez or Pedro, who was leading a highly immoral life. When he heard that his cousin was preaching on the wonders of the Rosary and learned that several people had been converted and had amended their lives by means of it, he said, “I had given up all hope of being saved but now I am beginning to take heart again. I really must hear this man of God.”
So one day he went to hear one of St. Dominic’s sermons. When the latter caught sight of him, he struck out against sin more zealously than ever before, and from the depths of his heart he besought God to enlighten his cousin and let him see what a deplorable state his soul was in.
At first, Don Perez was somewhat alarmed, but he still did not resolve to change his ways. He came once more to hear the Saint preach and his cousin, realizing that a heart as hardened as his could only be moved by something extraordinary, cried out with a loud voice, “Lord Jesus, grant that this whole congregation may see the state of the man who has just come into your house.”
Then everyone suddenly saw that Don Perez was completely surrounded by a band of devils in the form of hideous beasts, who were holding him in great iron chains. People fled in all directions in abject terror, and Don Perez himself was even more appalled when he saw how everyone shunned him. St. Dominic told them all to stand still and said to his cousin, “Unhappy man that you are, acknowledge the deplorable state you are in and throw yourself at Our Lady’s feet. Take this Rosary, say it with devotion and with true sorrow for all your sins, and make a resolution to amend your life.”
Don Perez knelt down and said the Rosary; he then felt the desire to make his confession, which he did with heartfelt contrition. St. Dominic ordered him to say the Rosary every day; he promised to do this and he entered his own name in the register of the Confraternity. When he left the church his face was no longer horrible to behold but shining like that of an angel. Thereafter he persevered in devotion to the Rosary, led a well‑ordered life and died a happy death.
9. I shall deliver from Purgatory, those who have been devoted to the Rosary.
10. The faithful children of the Rosary shall merit a high degree of glory in Heaven.
11. You shall obtain all you ask of me by the recitation of the Rosary.
12. All those who propagate the Holy Rosary, shall be aided by me in their necessities.
13. I have obtained from my Divine Son, that all the advocates of the Rosary shall have for intercessors, the entire celestial court, during their life and at the hour of death.
14. All who recite the Rosary are my sons, and brothers of my only Son Jesus Christ.
15. Devotion to my Rosary is a great sign of predestination.
OUR LADY IN OUR LIFE
by Fr. V. Bernadot, O.P.
Part 15 : Our Lady Is Full of Grace
The Fullness of Grace
“Thou art full of grace,” said the angel of the Incarnation. Our Lady’s holiness was immense already. From the first moments of her life God had showered favors on her: she had received the gifts of divine life far beyond all other creatures. She was filled with them to the capacity of her being. That capacity already exceeded anything we can possibly imagine, for God purposed to bring to perfection in His mother all that He proposed to accomplish in His members and to make her the heart of the Church’s life.
And yet Mary’s grace constantly grew.
Even saints stand still and fall. They mingle their personal tendencies with the operation of God in them. Even in the saints God does not do all that He wills.
But Mary corresponded totally with grace. No fault, no imperfection, ever impeded her spirit’s flight. Her will, united to the divine Will, moved onwards with irresistible power. From the moment of her conception she went towards God with deliberate love. She was wholly turned towards God. Every act of her life was dictated by intense love, which grew with every grace. She increased continually in holiness because she increased continually in love. Human imagination is too feeble to follow her progress. Every hour in innumerable ways she rose higher. Nothing of the divine impulsion was lost in her. Grace filled her being more and more as it does in heaven. Every moment the fidelity of her love attracted the Blessed Trinity, which poured its influence out on her afresh. She received a ceaseless influx of divine life.
She acquired this new merit more particularly according as the mysteries of Christ were unfolded.
For example, let us look at what took place in Mary when she carried Jesus in her womb. There was a unique exchange of love. There was first the union of the flesh common to both. Mary gave Jesus her purest flesh to form His body; she gave Him the blood that was to save the world; she formed the heart and the humanity that were to be the abundant source of so many graces. She gave that gift with inexpressible tenderness, with a love lit by the light of Jesus which made her understand the ultimate goal of the mystery. Jesus responded as God alone can. What was happening in Mary’s womb resembled what theologians teach about the inner life of the Holy Trinity, that eternal exchange of light and love between the three divine Persons, that circumincession which is the beatitude of God. Similarly, there was between Jesus and His mother a stupendous exchange of affection which God alone can understand. What abundant graces flowed for Mary from that direct and permanent contact with the author of grace! The tie between them was unique, was complete. The mere presence of the Word was a continuous cause of grace, and Mary’s perfect dispositions helped to make the outpouring of grace more abundant and never-ending.
Intimate contact with the humanity of Christ demands a spiritual contact by grace still more intimate. “Our Savior never shares His bodily presence except with the purpose of a still closer union in the spirit . . . . If that is so, divine Virgin, I conceive something so great in thee that not only I cannot express it, but my mind labors to form an explicit idea of it. For thy union with the body of Jesus, when thou hadst conceived Him in thy womb, was such that no closer union can be imagined. If union of spirit did not correspond to it, the love of Jesus would have been defrauded of what it had a right to expect, it would have suffered violence in thee. To satisfy Him, thou must have been as closely united to Him in spirit as thou wert by the ties of nature and of blood. And since that union was caused by grace what can one think or say of it? Is there any limit to our conceptions if they are not to fall short of such greatness? And if we add together all the gifts of all creatures, can they all together equal the plenitude of thy gifts?” (Bossuet, First Sermon on the Nativity of the B.V.M., 2nd point).
Jesus, says Berulle, “drew her to Himself, took complete possession of her. And the two hearts of Jesus and Mary, so intimately related by nature, were still more intimately united by grace, and lived in each other.” (Cardinal Pierre de Berulle, Euvres, p. 494).
Thus, throughout her whole life, Our Lady shared in the mysteries of her Son. In those mysteries, God little by little unfolded His hidden designs for the world. Our Lady was His confidante. What was more, she had her place in them as the collaborator of the Savior. She cooperated with Him. God gave her special light for that collaboration. And it all increased her merit. Her actions were flooded with light and love. Think, for example, of her merit as she stood at the foot of the Cross. Her Compassion was a work of love: love of God and love of men. She delivered up her Son through love. What boundless merit, and what graces she must have received at the moment that she became, in fact, through her maternity of suffering, the mother of all the children of God!
Add the increase of her merit as her life unrolled itself day by day. Never a stain, never a fall, never a stoppage in the development of her limitless grace, but continual progress. Each act of Our Lady brought about growth in grace. Through love, God flooded her with His lights, and there was no measure but her own ever-growing capacity. “The sower went forth to sow” (Matthew 13:3), and sowed His seed every minute; she received it all with docility, with love; she preserved it all and brought forth fruit a hundred-fold.
“The years passed,” says Berulle, “graces increased and in that order of grace which was peculiar to her, she entered day by day into an admirable element; she entered it by a special infusion of grace and by perfect cooperation. There was a sacred harmony between the spirit of God and the spirit of Mary. God every moment poured new graces into her soul, and her soul responded incessantly with all its power. And that correspondence and perfect harmony lifted her up to a towering height of grace; and those graces though very great in her soul which was ever advancing in the ways of God, were but steps to raise her to fresh graces. So rare a soul, eminent, divine, living thus on earth, delighted the heavens; and would delight the earth if its darkness did not blind it to so rare a, spectacle.” (Cardinal Pierre de Bcrulle, Vie de Jesus, ch. 5).
It was love that made the beauty of her life. Our Lady put into her actions so much light and love that they surpassed the most arduous achievements of the greatest saints. “The song of nightingales though they are only young learners, is incomparably more musical than that of the most accomplished goldfinches.” (St. Francis de Sales, Traite de l’amour de Dieu, V. XI, ch. 5).
Every minute Mary’s burning love received grace, responded to it utterly, used it perfectly, and caused it to be endlessly multiplied.
“Days went on adding themselves to days, and years to years; and like some fabulous machinery, with overwhelming force and with invisible speed, the process of correspondence and sanctification went on, multiplying itself in one short hour beyond the figures of all human sums.” (Frederick Faber, The Foot of the Cross, ch. VIII, p. 363).
“But as divine love reigned unimpeded in her heart it grew constantly day by day through its own exercise and increased of itself; so that at last, continually extending its domain, it reached such perfection that earth could no longer contain it. So that there was no other cause for Mary’s death than her living, burning love ... As love was the mainspring of Mary’s life, so love was the cause of her death.” (Bossuet, Sermon sur l’Assomption, V. IV, pp. 412, 424).
FATHER FABER AND THE ROSARY
The Rosary and Contemplative Prayer
When Mary appeared in Lourdes and then at Fatima, she came wearing a Rosary. Why the importance of the Rosary? Because without prayer it is very difficult to overcome the world. The Catechism of the Catholic Church quotes Saint Alphonsus de Ligouri: “Those who pray are certainly saved; those who do not pray are certainly damned.” The “world” wants to drown out our desire for God: to make God irrelevant. As one person once said, “who needs God when you have a Cadillac?” The world places a high priority on things rather than God. Go to a mall: where is God to be found?
To remedy this downward pull of worldliness, we need prayer – especially prayer that is concentrated on the life of Christ, from his birth to his resurrection. The Rosary accomplishes this need in a powerful way because it joins our sometimes very weak prayers to those of the Blessed Virgin, whom Jesus loves with the most indescribable of loves. Mary presents our prayers to the Lord in a way that makes those prayers very pleasing to Him.
The great spiritual writer of the 19th century, F.W. Faber, whom The Catholic Encyclopedia calls “a master” of the mystical life, says in one of his books that “I cannot conceive a man as being spiritual who does not habitually say the Rosary” (Growth in Holiness), and Faber was a convert! He justifies this strong statement by saying that if we are going to persevere in the Faith we need to perpetually keep Mary and Jesus before us: and that is what the Rosary does. He mentions that the Rosary combines vocal and mental prayer, presumably meaning that it strengthens our interior lives and aids in contemplating the presence of God. It is Mary’ prayer: it is a prayer, as Faber states, that has been strongly sanctioned by the Church and the saints.
There is a “strange seduction” in the world that draws our hearts away from the one true good that we all need: God. The rosary is the antidote to this deception. As Deacon Marc once said, the rosary repels evil and promotes virtue. The Blessed Virgin always has our best interests in mind, to wit: prayer and knowledge of the Lord Jesus. We should pray the rosary with great love and confidence: it is a devotion very dear to our Lord’s heart.
"My friend: say the Rosary as often as possible. Devotion to Mary is the “safety of souls.”
In notes published after his death, the following was said by Father Faber: “In consequence of all these blessings [from saying the Rosary], the devil makes the Rosary a special subject of temptations, weariness, contempt, and the like. Persevere in it, and it will itself be the chain of your own final perseverance.” He also calls the rosary “an instrument of power.” (Notes on Doctrinal and Spiritual Subjects, p. 308).
APPARITIONS OF MARY
A Brief Chronological Thumbnail Sketch of Some of Our Lady's Apparitions
Always as our Mother and our Savior’s Mother, Mary has appeared under many titles to many diverse peoples in different periods of history. She suffered a sword piercing her heart as she watched her son’s Passion and Death, and she is constantly alert to even our smallest sufferings. Our Blessed Mother comes to us when we need her most, with a message and guidance specific to the problems and suffering at hand. Here are a few beautiful stories of Marian apparitions in countries all over the world to inspire you and remind you of the eternal compassion and counsel which she unceasingly offers to us.
Our Lady of the Pillar, Zaragoza, Spain (First Century)
An ancient Spanish tradition states that the Blessed Mother appeared to the apostle James the Greater while he was praying by the banks of the Ebro. She was accompanied by angels, standing on a pillar, and appeared to him for encouragement. He had not made many converts and was battling discouragement at the time of the apparition.
Our Lady performed many miracles while in James’ presence and assured him that many people would come to the Faith because of his influence, and their Faith would be as strong as the pillar she was standing on. Before she left James, she gave him a wooden statue of herself and instructed him to have a chapel built on the site in her honor. Today there is also a shrine where pilgrims venerate Our Lady of the Pillar.
YOUR DAILY DATE WITH MARY
Today we celebrate the dedication of the Abbey of Our Lady in Pontigny (France)
The Abbot Orsini wrote: “Dedication of the church of Pontigny, four leagues from Auxerre, under the title of Our Lady. This abbey was founded in 1114 by Thibaud, Count of Champagne.”
The former abbey of Pontigny is nestled in the Serein valley in the north of Burgundy, and is one of the oldest sites of the Cistercian order. Being only the second Cistertian monastery, it was established in the year 1114 by Hugh of Macon, the companion of Saint Bernard, in this valley north of Auxerre in the French Department of Yonne. It is notable that Hugh later became the bishop of Auxerre.
The monks valued the land, the woods and streams they were surrounded with, and built large farms around their abbey. They raised various crops, bread pigs and sheep, and made terracotta tiles and bricks. It was that strong economic base that enabled them to construct the great Romanesque style church that reached an impressive length of 120 meters that still stands intact today.
In the year 1164 the abbey received the Archbishop of Canterbury and Primate of England Thomas Becket while he was an exile due to his opposition to King Henry, and in 1206 the Queen of France, Alix de Champagne, was buried in the choir of the abbey.
The wealthy abbey was looted and burned by the Huguenots in about 1529 during the Wars of Religion. During the French Revolution the abbey was suppressed, and its buildings largely sold or destroyed, save for the church. Unlike most churches during the time of the French Revolution, the Abbey of Pontigny is completely preserved and is now thought to be the largest Cistercian church in France. The church is notable for its arches and columns with twin bays, its vaults on two columns and portal with tympanum cross and wrought iron hinges.
Known as the church of Notre-Dame-et-Saint-Edme Pontigny, or Our Lady of Saint Edmond of Pontigny, the old church abbey monastery became the parish church of the village of the same name after the French Revolution.
The church of Notre-Dame-et-Saint-Edme Pontigny is now abandoned, and it is used now simply as a kind of cultural meeting place.
THE SECRET OF THE ROSARY
by St. Louis de Montfort
The key passages of this book will be serialized daily throughout this Month of the Rosary
§52. This heavenly salutation draws down upon us the blessings of Jesus and Mary in abundance, for it is an infallible truth that Jesus and Mary reward in a marvelous way those who glorify them. “I love those who love me. I enrich them and fill their treasures.” That is what Jesus and Mary say to us. “Those who sow blessings will also reap blessings.”
Now if we say the Hail Mary properly, is not that a way to love, bless and glorify Jesus and Mary? In each Hail Mary we bless both Jesus and Mary: “Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.”
By each Hail Mary we give Our Lady the same honor that God gave her when he sent the archangel Gabriel to greet her for him. How could anyone possibly think that Jesus and Mary, who often do good to those who curse them, could ever curse those who bless and honor them by the Hail Mary?
Both Saint Bernard and Saint Bonaventure say that the Queen of Heaven is certainly no less grateful and good than gracious and well‑mannered people of this world. Just as she excels in all other perfections, she surpasses us all in the virtue of gratitude; so she will never let us honor her with respect without repaying us a hundredfold. Saint Bonaventure says that Mary will greet us with grace if we greet her with the Hail Mary.
Who could possibly understand the graces and blessings which the greeting and tender regard of the Virgin Mary effect in us? From the very first instant that Saint Elizabeth heard the greeting given her by the Mother of God, she was filled with the Holy Spirit and the child in her womb leaped for joy. If we make ourselves worthy of the greeting and blessing of Our Lady, we shall certainly be filled with graces and a flood of spiritual consolations will flow into our souls.
MARY SPEAKS TO YOU
The words Our Lady has spoken in her apparitions and to various saints
WORDS OF OUR LADY TO THE VENERABLE MARY OF AGREDA
In this passage, Our Lady speaks of the virtue of Charity.
If I desire in maternal affection, that thou follow me and imitate me in all the other virtues, then more especially do I make known and declare to thee my desire to see thee follow me in the virtue of charity, for this is the end and the crowning glory of all other virtues. I desire that thou exert thy utmost powers to copy in thy soul, with the greatest perfection, all that thou hast learnt of my charity. Light up the lamp of thy faith and reason in order to find this drachm of infinite value, and after thou hast found it, forget and despise all that is earthly and corruptible.
In thy own mind consider again and again, ponder and take heed of the infinite reasons and causes that make God lovable above all other things. In order that thou mayest be sure that thou lovest Him perfectly and truly, search within thyself for the following signs and effects of that love; whether thy thought and meditation dwell continually on God, whether his commands and counsel find in thee no repugnance or remissness, whether thou fearest to offend Him, whether thou seekest immediately to appease Him after having offended Him, whether thou grievest to see Him offended and rejoicest to see Him served by all creatures, whether thou desirest and art delighted to speak continually of his love; see whether thou delightest in the memory of his presence, whether thou grievest at thy forgetfulness of Him and at his absence from thee, whether thou lovest what He loves, and abhorrest what He abhors, whether thou seekest to draw all men towards his friendship and grace, whether thou prayest with confidence; see whether thou receivest with gratitude his benefits, whether thou dost not waste them but rather turnest them to good account for his honor and glory, whether thou strivest to extinguish in thyself all the movements of the passions, which retard thee or hinder thee in thy loving aspirations and in thy works of virtue.
All these and many more are the signs of greater or less charity in the soul. When charity is ardent and strong, it will be especially careful not to suffer the forces of the soul to remain idle, nor to consent to any blemish, because it will immediately consume and wipe it out. It will not rest until it can taste the highest Good of its love. For without it, this love droops, is wounded and dies. It thirsts after that wine which inebriates the heart, causing a forgetfulness of all that is corruptible and passing.
And as charity is the mother and the root of all virtue, its fecundity will immediately show itself as soon as it has found a place in the soul; it will fill it and adorn it with the habits of the other virtues, and engender them one after another by establishing the practice of them, as the Apostle says (1 Corinthians 13, 4). The soul that is in charity not only feels the effects of charity in itself, but through charity it is secure of being loved by God; through this divine love, it enjoys the reciprocal effect of God’s indwelling, so that the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost will come and live in it as their temple, and this is a blessing which no words and no example can properly express in this mortal life.
The right order of this virtue is to love God above all the creatures, then to love oneself, and him who is nearest to oneself, namely, our neighbor. God must be loved with the whole understanding, without deceit, with the whole will, without reserve or division, with the whole mind, without forgetfulness, without diminution, without negligence or remissness.
The motive of charity in loving God is none else than God Himself; for He must be loved for his own sake, being the highest Good and most perfect goodness and holiness. Loving God for such motives causes the creature to love itself and the neighbor and itself; for both belong to one and the same God, from whom they derive their origin, their life and activity. He that loves God truly for Himself will also love all that is of God and all that in some way participates in his goodness.
Therefore charity looks upon the neighbor as a work and a participation of God and makes no distinction between friend or enemy. Charity looks only upon that which is of God and which pertains to Him in others, no matter whether the neighbor is friendly or hostile, a benefactor or a persecutor. It attends only to the difference in the participation of the divine and infinite goodness and according to this standard it loves all in God and for God.
All other kinds of love, such as loving creatures for less exalted motives, hoping for some kind of reward, advantage or return, or loving them under cover of disorderly concupiscence, or with a mere human and natural love, even if it should spring from naturally virtuous and well-ordered motives, are not infused charity.
As it is usual in men to be moved by these partial excellences and for selfish and earthly ends, there are few who embrace and appreciate the nobility of this generous virtue and who exercise it with proper perfection. For they seek even God and pursue Him, for the sake of temporal blessings, or for spiritual benefits and pleasures.
I desire that thou drive out of thy heart all these disorderly loves, and that thou live only in well-ordered charity, to which the Most High has inclined thy desires. If thou so many times reaffirmest that this virtue is so beautiful, so pleasing and so worthy of being sought and esteemed by all creatures, apply thyself to know it in its full excellence; and having come to understand its value, set thyself to purchase this incomparable gem by forgetting and extinguishing in thy heart all love that is not the perfect love.
Love no creatures except for God, and for what thou seest in them as coming from God and belonging to Him, in the same manner as a bride loves all the servants and connections of the house of her bridegroom because they are his. Forget to love anything not referable to God or not lovable on his account, nor love in any other way except as I have asked thee or the Most High has commanded thee to love.
hou wilt also know whether thou lovest with pure charity, by thy behavior towards friends and enemies, the naturally agreeable and disagreeable, the polite and the impolite, those that possess or do not possess natural advantages. All this sort of distinction does not come from pure charity, but from the natural inclinations and passions of the appetites, which thou must govern, extinguish and eradicate by means of this sublime virtue.
DAILY EXAMINATION OF CONSCIENCE
What's the point of it all?
A Method of Making the General Examen from
The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola
There is no better way to make a daily examination of conscience or “Examen” as St. Ignatius calls it, than following the recommendations of St. Ignatius of Loyola, as described in his masterful Spiritual Exercises. Before we give any kind of list to help you with your daily Examen, it is good to review the points and purposes placed before us by St. Ignatius.
ST. IGNATIUS: “The first point is to give thanks to God our Lord for the gifts received.”
Ignatius once said that the most abominable sin he could imagine was the sin of ingratitude. He knew that an awareness of God's goodness and generosity is the foundation of our relationship with God. Once we recognize God's goodness, we spontaneously feel gratitude. Most people today are oblivious to God’s intervention in their lives—yes, even ‘good’ people. They only see God where and when they want to see Him. They fail or refuse to see Him in the disappointments, setbacks, failures, hurts and irritations of the day. Besides barely or never thanking Him for all the good things that come our way daily—life itself, relative health, relative wealth or well-being, security, job, food, drink, weather, relative peace (as opposed to war), being able to live in a non-Third World environment, having the Faith, the Mass, etc.—most people just blindly drag themselves through life, muttering and chuntering, groaning and moaning, about a myriad of things that they blindly encounter, failing to thank God for anything and everything—the pleasant and not so pleasant.
Thus, in this first point, we express gratitude for the experiences and encounters during the day that have been good or pleasant or meaningful, whether they seem trivial or important. We thank God for the disappointments, setbacks, failures, hurts and irritations of the day. We also express gratitude for the larger gifts we have received: our Faith and our potential salvation, our life, our talents and abilities, significant relationships, whatever comes to mind.
St. Thomas Aquinas says that if we feel that our love of God is weak or barely sparking, then the remedy is to start thanking God. At first, the person runs out of things to thank Him for very quickly—that is because the soul is blind to the incredible amount of things that God does for us. As our spiritual life deepens, we become more and more aware that all we have is gift, given to us far beyond anything we might expect or deserve.
We might sometimes find ourselves in a mood of resentment or depression where a feeling of gratitude is hard to muster. At that time, it is all the more important for us to express thanks to God. Not to pretend to feelings we don't feel, but to acknowledge, at whatever level we can, the truth of God's goodness to us.
ST. IGNATIUS: “The second point is to ask for the grace to know my sins and to root them out.”
St. Ignatius gives his second point a moralistic tone. The particular grace we are seeking here can be expressed more broadly as the light to see our life the way that God sees it, without the illusions and deceptions that we commonly live by. If we are to ask for this grace wholeheartedly, it is important for us to know how desperately we are in need of it. Our Lord once said to one of His mystics that if she could see herself as He saw her, then she would die out of terror. All of us have terrible illusions about ourselves and think ourselves to FAR better than we are in reality. Psychology has shown that many of our true feelings and motivations are genuinely hidden from us. The unconscious part of ourselves can have a powerful influence on what we feel and how we act. Even apart from this, there is a natural tendency to rationalize our actions and to believe the sort of front we put on for other people. Or we can deny or repress unpleasant or embarrassing things about ourselves. Or we can have attitudes of self-deprecation or contempt that distort our view of ourselves and others.
The possibilities for self-deception are endless. To truly know ourselves is not something that we are able to do alone. We need to ask the Holy Spirit for the light that can reveal us to ourselves.
ST. IGNATIUS: “The third point is to demand an account of my soul from the moment of rising to that of the present examination, hour by hour or period by period. The thoughts should be examined first, then the words, and finally the actions.”
The third point is the heart of the Examen. Our actions, words, thoughts, feelings can come from an internal source of freedom and openness to other people and God. Or they can come from what St. Paul calls the “flesh” or the “law of sin”; that is to say from the self-centeredness that inhabits all of us. We examine the events of our day methodically in order to uncover the source and the direction of our life that day.
Ignatius suggests we move from thoughts to words to actions. However, it can be more fruitful to move the other way, to look at words and actions and then reflect on the real motivations, intentions and feelings that underlay them. Actions that are apparently good can be done for bad motives, such as a desire for praise. Such an action might be considered praiseworthy but really springs from self-centeredness.
Some people are free from actions that are obviously sinful. But when we go to a deeper level of intention and feeling, we can discover that sin has a larger hold on our life than we suspect, that there are all sorts of subtle ways that we focus on self rather than moving outward, towards others and towards the Other―the capitalized “Other” being God.
The Christian life aims at a purity of intention, where all our actions spring from freedom and grace. At first we achieve this type of freedom only sporadically and often fall short. But we can grow towards it.
The examination of our day is not simply earnest introspection, it is prayer. It is going through our day with God, attentive to the inner feelings and desires which is where we experience God's call in the midst of everyday activity.
ST. IGNATIUS: “The fourth point is to ask pardon of God our Lord for my faults.”
Once we have reviewed our day, we may have come to a sense of the dynamic of sin and grace that has been operating in our life that day. The fourth point is our response to that awareness.
Insofar as we have discovered grace and freedom operative during the day, our response is gratitude and wonder for the work of God in our soul. Genuine freedom always comes as a surprise to us, because it involves a sort of self-transcendence that we know we don't have in ourselves. When we discover that in our day, we need to praise God for it.
Conversely, when we discover sinfulness and self-centeredness, our response is remorse and contrition. Contrition does not mean dwelling in guilt and shame and beating ourselves for not being perfect. It means recognizing our distance from God, our moving away from God, and asking for and receiving God's forgiveness. The difference between contrition and shame is that contrition is a feeling that moves us out of ourselves and towards God. Shame simply moves us deeper into ourselves.
Like gratitude in the first point, we may not be able to deeply feel the contrition that is the proper response to recognition of our self-centeredness. But it is important then to express it, even if it doesn't seem very deep, by asking for pardon.
ST. IGNATIUS: “The fifth point is to resolve to amend with the help of God's grace. Close with the Lord's Prayer.”
We end the Examen by looking towards tomorrow with the desire and resolve to effect changes in action or attitude that God has called us to today.
Alcoholics Anonymous has a slogan, “One Day at a Time” by which they mean that sobriety is not achieved by big and noble resolutions, but by trying to stay sober for one day.
It can be useful to look at our spiritual life in that way. We deal with it one day at a time. In this fifth point we don't look at changing our whole lives, we simply look at what we want to change tomorrow, and ask God's help for it. Our lives are a drama of sin and grace. But this drama is being played out on the rather humble stage of our day to day life.
Ignatius adds our need for God's grace, an important point. We are not resolving to perfect ourselves by force of our own will. We are resolving to open ourselves to grace through awareness of where we need it.
Soul of Christ, sanctify me
Body of Christ, save me
Blood of Christ, inebriate me
Water from the side of Christ, wash me
Passion of Christ, strengthen me
O Good Jesus, hear me
Within Thy wounds hide me
Permit me not to be separated from thee
From the wicked foe defend me
At the hour of my death call me
And bid me come to thee
That with the Saints I may praise thee
Forever and ever. Amen