8 - 12 minutes readSaturday- First Week After Pentecost ~ St Alphonsus

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Saturday- First Week After Pentecost

Morning Mediation

THE GENEROUS HEART OF JESUS

It is a characteristic of good-hearted people to desire to make everybody happy, and especially the most distressed and afflicted. But who can ever find one who has a better heart than Jesus Christ? He is infinite Goodness itself, and has therefore a sovereign desire to communicate His riches to us: With me are riches .. that I may enrich them that love me-(Prov. viii. 18, 21).

I.

Who can ever find one who has a better heart than Jesus Christ? He is infinite Goodness itself, and has therefore a sovereign desire to communicate His riches to us. With me are riches … that I may enrich them that love me. For this purpose Jesus made Himself poor, as the Apostle says, that He might make us rich: He became poor for your sakes, that through his poverty you might be rich-(2 Cor. viii. 9). For this purpose also He chose to remain with us in the Most Holy Sacrament, where He remains constantly with His hands full of graces, as was seen by Father Balthazar Alvarez, to dispense them to those who come to visit Him. For this reason also He gives Himself wholly to us in Communion, giving us to understand from this that He cannot refuse us any good gifts, since He even gives Himself entirely to us: How hath he not also, with him, given us all things?-(Rom. viii. 32).

Ah, my Jesus, Thou hast not refused to give me Thy Blood and Thy life, and shall I refuse to give Thee my miserable heart? No, my dearest Redeemer, I offer it entirely to Thee. I give Thee all my will; do Thou accept it, and dispose of it at Thy pleasure. I can do nothing, and have nothing of my own, but I have this heart which Thou hast given me, and of which no one can deprive me. I may be deprived of my goods, my blood, my life, but not of my heart. With this heart I can love thee; with this heart I will love Thee. I beseech Thee, O my God, teach me a perfect forgetfulness of myself. Teach me what I must do to arrive at Thy pure love, of which Thou in Thy goodness hast inspired me with the desire. I feel in myself a determination to please Thee; but in order to put my resolve into execution, I expect, and implore help from Thee. It depends on Thee, O loving Heart of Jesus, to make entirely Thine my poor heart, which hitherto has been so ungrateful, and through my own fault deprived of Thy love.

II.

In the Heart of Jesus we receive every good, every grace that we desire: In all things you are made rich in him . . .so that nothing is wanting to you in any grace –(I Cor, i. 5,7). And we must understand that we are debtors to the Heart of Jesus for all the graces we have received-graces of Redemption, of vocation, of light, of pardon; the grace to resist temptations, and to bear patiently with contradictions; for without His assistance we could not do anything good: Without me you can do nothing-(Jo. xv. 5).

And if hitherto, says our Saviour, you have not received more graces, do not complain of Me, but blame yourself, who have neglected to seek them of Me: Hitherto you have not asked anything; … ask, and you shall receive-(Jo. xvi. 24). Oh, how rich and liberal is the Heart of Jesus towards everyone that has recourse to Him! Rich unto all that call upon him-(Rom. x. 12). Oh, what great mercies do those souls receive who are earnest in asking help of Jesus Christ. David said, For thou, O Lord, art sweet and mild, and plenteous to all who call upon thee-(Ps. lxxxv. 5). Let us therefore always go to this Heart, and ask with confidence, and we shall obtain all we want.

Oh, grant that my heart may be all on fire with the love of Thee, dear Jesus, even as Thine is on fire with the love of me. Grant that my will may be entirely united to Thine, so that I may will nothing but what Thou willest, and that from this day forth Thy holy will may be the rule of all my actions, of all my thoughts, and of all my desires. I trust, O my Saviour, that Thou wilt not refuse me Thy grace to fulfil this resolution which I now make prostrate at Thy feet, to receive with submission whatever Thou mayest ordain for me and my affairs as well in life as in death. Blessed art thou, O Immaculate Mary, who hadst thy heart always and entirely united to the Heart of Jesus. Obtain for me, O my Mother, that in future I may wish and desire only what Jesus wills and what thou willest.

Spiritual Reading

CORAM SANCTISSIMO

TENTH VISIT

O foolish ones of the world, says St. Augustine, miserable creatures, whither are you going to satisfy your hearts? Come to Jesus, for by Him alone can that pleasure which you seek be bestowed. “Unhappy creatures, whither are you going? The good you seek for comes from Him.” My soul, be not of the number of these foolish ones; seek God alone: “seek for that one Good in which are all good things.” And if thou desirest soon to find Him, behold, He is close to thee; tell Him what thou desirest, since for this end it is He in the ciborium, to console thee, and to grant thy prayer St. Teresa says that all are not allowed to speak to their king; the most that can be hoped for is to communicate with him through a third person. To converse with Thee, O King of glory, no third person is needed; Thou art always ready in the Sacrament of the Altar to give audience to all. Whoever desires Thee, always finds Thee there, and converses with Thee face to face. And even if anyone at length succeeds in speaking with a king, how many difficulties has he had to overcome before he can do so! Kings grant audiences only a few times in the year; but Thou, in this Sacrament, grantest audience to all night and day, and whenever we please.

O Sacrament of love, Thou Who, whether Thou givest Thyself in the Communion, or dwellest on the altar, knowest, by the tender attractions of Thy love, how to draw so many hearts to Thyself, who, enamoured with Thee, and filled with amazement at the sight of such love, burn with joy, and think always of Thee, draw also my miserable heart to Thyself; for it desires to love Thee, and to live enslaved by Thy love. For my part, I now and henceforward place all my interests, all my hopes, and all my affections, my soul, my body, I place all in the hands of Thy goodness. Accept me, O Lord, and dispose of me as Thou pleasest. I will never again complain, O my Love, of Thy holy dispensations; I know that, as all take their source in Thy loving Heart, they will be full of love, and for my good. It is enough for me to know that Thou willest them; I will them also in time and eternity. Do all Thou willest in me and with me; I unite my entire self to Thy will, which is all holy, all good, all beautiful, all perfect, all loving. O will of my God, how dear art Thou to me! My will is ever to live and die united to and bound up with Thee. Thy pleasure is my pleasure. I will that Thy desires be also my desires. O my God, my God, help me; make me henceforward live for Thee alone; make me will only what Thou willest, and make me live only to love Thy amiable will. Grant that I may die for Thy love, since Thou hast died and become Food for me. I curse those days in which I did my own will, so much to Thy displeasure. I love Thee, O Will of God, as much as I love God, since Thou art one with Him. I love Thee, then, with my whole heart, and give myself all to Thee.

Ejac. O will of God, Thou art my love.

AN ACT OF SPIRITUAL COMMUNION

My Jesus, I believe that Thou art truly present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love Thee above all things, and I desire to possess Thee within my soul. Since I am unable now to receive Thee sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace Thee as already there, and unite myself wholly to Thee; never permit me to be separated from Thee.

VISIT TO MARY

The great Queen says, With me are riches . .. that I may enrich them that love me-(Prov. viii. 18,21). Let us love Mary if we would be rich in graces. The writer who signs himself “Idiota” styles her “the treasurer of graces.” Blessed is he who has recourse to Mary with love and confidence. My Mother, my hope, thou canst make me a saint; from thee I hope for this favour.

Ejac. Mother most amiable, pray for me!

Concluding Prayer

Most holy Immaculate Virgin and my Mother Mary, to thee, who art the Mother of my Lord, and Queen of the world, the advocate, the hope, the refuge of sinners, I have recourse today I, who am the most miserable of all. I render thee my most humble homage, O great Queen, and I thank thee for all the graces thou hast conferred on me until now, particularly for having delivered me from hell, which I have so often deserved. I love thee, O most amiable Lady; and for the love which I bear thee, I promise to serve thee always, and to do all in my power to make others love thee also. I place in thee all my hopes; I confide my salvation to thy care. Accept me for thy servant, and receive me under thy mantle, O Mother of Mercy. And since thou art so powerful with God, deliver me from all temptations, or rather obtain for me the strength to triumph over them until death. Of thee I ask a perfect love of Jesus Christ. From thee I hope to die a good death.

O my Mother, for the love which thou bearest to God, I beseech thee to help me at all times, but especially at the last moment of my life. Leave me not, I beseech thee, until thou seest me safe in Heaven, blessing thee, and singing thy mercies for all eternity. Amen. So I hope. So may it be.

Evening Mediation

THE PRACTICE OF THE LOVE OF JESUS CHRIST

XXIII.-HE THAT LOVES JESUS CHRIST DESIRES NOTHING BUT JESUS CHRIST

I.

Let us be especially on our guard against all ambitious seeking of preference, and sensibility in points of honour. St. Teresa said, “Where points of honour prevail, there spirituality will never prevail.” Many persons make profession of a spiritual life, but they are worshippers of self. They have the semblance of certain virtues, but they are ambitious of being praised in all their undertakings; and if nobody else praises them they praise themselves. In short, they strive to appear better than others; and if their honour be touched, they lose their peace, they leave off Holy Communion, they omit all their devotions, and find no rest till they imagine they have got back their former standing. The true lovers of God do not so behave. They not only carefully shun every word of self-complacency, but, further, they are sorry at hearing themselves commended by others, and it is their joy to see themselves held in small repute by the rest of men.

II.

That saying of St. Francis of Assisi is most true: “What I am before God, that I am.” Of what use is it to pass for great in the eyes of the world, if before God we be vile and worthless? And on the contrary, what matters it to be despised by the world, provided we be dear and aeceptable in the eyes of God? St. Augustine thus writes: “The approbation of him who praises, neither heals a bad conscience, nor does the reproach of him who blames wound a good conscience.” As the man who praises us cannot deliver us from the chastisement of our evil doings, so neither can he who blames us rob us of the merit of our good actions. “What does it matter,” says St. Teresa, “though we be condemned and reviled by creatures, if before Thee, O God, we are great and without blame?” The Saints had no other desire but to live unknown, and to pass for contemptible in the estimation of all. Thus writes St. Francis de Sales: “But what wrong do we suffer when people have a bad opinion of us, since we ought to have such of ourselves? Perhaps we know that we are bad, and yet wish to pass off for good in the estimation of others.”

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