Friday, July 26, 2019

Lost Prayers #17

Prayers Before Communion, Part 2

Act of Love
Ah! my God, the true and only love of my soul, what more couldst Thou do to induce me to love Thee! Thou wast not content with dying for me; Thou didst wish to institute this holy sacrament, to give Thyself entirely to me, and thus unite Thy whole Heart to the heart of a creature so vile and ungrateful as I am. And what is more Thou Thyself dost invite me to receive Thee; Thou dost ardently desire that I should receive Thee. O infinite love! incomprehensible love! a God wishes to give Himself to me!

My soul, dost thou believe all this? What art thou doing, or what hast thou to say? O God, infinitely amiable, the only object worthy of all love, I love Thee with my whole heart; I love Thee above all things; I love Thee more than myself – more than my life! Oh, that I could see Thee loved by all! Oh, that I could make all hearts love Thee as much as Thou dost desire! I love Thee, O most amiable God; and in loving Thee, I unite my miserable heart to the heart of the Seraphim, to the heart of most holy Mary, and to the Heart of Jesus, Thy most holy Son. Thus I love Thee, O infinite Goodness, with the love with which the saints, with which Jesus and Mary love Thee. I love Thee only because Thou art worthy of my love, and through the sole motive of pleasing Thee. Begone from my heart, all earthly affections, you tend not to God. Mother of pure love, most holy Mary, help me to love that God, Whom thou dost desire to see so much loved.

Act of Humility
O my Saviour! who am I that Thou shouldst invite me to receive Thee for the food of my soul? Is it possible that Thou, the God of infinite purity, shouldst come and dwell in my heart, which has been so long the abode of Thy enemy, and the sink of so much sin? Lord, if Thou wilt Thou canst make me clean. Say but the word, and my soul shall be healed. I come then, O my amiable Saviour, to receive Thee this morning, but I come covered with shame and confusion at the sight of my sins, but full of confidence in Thy mercy, and in the love which Thou does bear to me.

Act of Sorrow
O God of my soul, I am sincerely sorry for not having hitherto loved Thee. Instead of having loved Thee, I have, for the sake of my pleasures, offended and despised Thy infinite goodness; I have turned my back upon Thee; in a word, O my God, I have voluntarily lost Thee. Lord, I am sorry from the bottom of my heart, for all my sins. I hate above all things the offences, whether mortal or venial, which I have committed against Thee, Who art infinite goodness. I hope Thou hast already cleansed me from the stain of sin in the sacrament of penance, but I desire to become still purer in Thy sight. Vouchsafe then to wash in Thy blood this soul, which Thou dost wish soon to make Thy dwelling-place.

Act of Desire
O my soul, the happy hour is arrived; Jesus comes to dwell in my poor heart. Behold the King of heaven, thy Redeemer and thy God, coming to thee; prepare thyself to receive Him with love; say to Him with the most ardent desire: Come, O my Jesus, come to me; I desire to receive Thee. Before Thou dost give Thyself to me, I desire to give Thee my miserable heart; accept it, come and take full possession of it. Come, my God, make haste; do not delay. O my only and infinite good, my treasure, my life, my love, and my all. I would wish to receive Thee with that love with which the most holy and loving souls, with which Immaculate Mary received Thee. With their Communion I unite this Communion of mine. Most holy Virgin, my Mother, Mary, behold I am going to receive thy Son. I would wish to have thy heart, and the love with which thou didst communicate: give me this morning thy Jesus, as thou gavest Him to the shepherds and to the Magi. I wish to receive Him from thy most pure hands: tell Him that I am thy servant, and that I am devoted to thee; and when He comes to me, He will look on me with a more loving eye, and will unite Himself more closely to me.

From The Treasury of the Sacred Heart, 1878

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Lost Prayers #16

Prayers Before Communion, Part 1

Act of Right Intention
My dear Redeemer, it is not from custom or human respect that I come to receive Thee: but it is solely to love and be united to Thee, to live by Thee and for Thee, to be delivered from my miseries and to clothe myself with Thy virtues, to strengthen myself against my enemies; it is to ask from Thee the exaltation of the Church, Thy beloved spouse, the conversion of sinners, perseverance for the just, and deliverance for the poor souls in purgatory. Purify more and more my intentions, rectify them, O my Jesus, render them conformable to Thine; this is my sole desire.

Act of Faith
Lord Jesus, eternal and infallible Truth, since Thou has said that Thou art really present in the holy Eucharist, I believe it firmly. Yes, this host which I see, and which I am to receive, is not bread, but the living body of Jesus Christ, God and man; it is the God Whom the angels adore in heaven; I believe it. I do not understand this mystery, but I wish to believe it without seeking to penetrate it, that I may have the happiness of seeing and contemplating it one day in heaven. Strengthen my weakness, increase my faith, render it so lively, that I may honor Thee, love Thee, and receive Thee, as if I already beheld Thee.

Act of Adoration
I adore Thee, O my God present in the holy Eucharist, as my Creator, my Preserver, and my Redeemer. I offer Thee all that I have, all that I am, all that depends on me; I offer Thee my mind to think of Thee, my heart to love Thee; my will to serve Thee; my body to labor and suffer for Thy love. I am Thine, I give myself to Thee, I consecrate myself to Thee, I abandon myself to Thee, I wish to live and die for love of Thee.

Act of Confidence
My soul, dilate thy heart; thy Jesus can give thee every good gift; He loves thee ardently. Hope, then, for great favors from this Lord, Who, through an impulse of love, comes to thee all love. Yes, my Jesus, my hope, I trust in Thy goodness, that in giving Thyself to me this morning, Thou wilt kindle in my poor soul the flames of Thy pure love, and of an ardent desire to please Thee, that, from this day forward, I may wish only what Thou wishest.

From The Treasury of the Sacred Heart, 1878

Monday, July 1, 2019

Interacting with Samuel, Part 4

Let's continue our journey through the First Book of Samuel. Remember, these questions are designed to help us interact deeply with the text, and more importantly with the Author of the text, i.e., God. They are meant to start up a meditation and a conversation that begin with God's Word and lead into a personal encounter with our Lord.

1 Samuel 7

*Samuel tells the Israelites that if they wish to return to the Lord, they must do three things. What are those three things?

*What kinds of idols do we need to put away if we are to focus on God?

*Describe the attitude of the Israelites as they face another Philistine threat.

*What does Samuel do in the face of the Philistine threat?

*How does God fight for the Israelites? How does He fight our battles?

1 Samuel 8

*Why do the Israelites want a king? Are their motives good, bad, or somewhere in between?

*What is God's response to the Israelites' demand? Why does He respond in this way?

*What are the Israelites really telling God with their demand for a king?

*Samuel is quite clear about what a king will demand of Israel; list some of the points he makes.

*How convincing are Samuel's arguments?

*How do the Israelites respond to Samuel? Why?