We recently had a Facebook Live session to answer the below question that one of our followers submitted to us: “I pray to Our Lord, Our Blessed Mother, and several of my favorite saints. I’m usually asking for the same things. I know that God knows what I desire, so should I keep repeatedly asking?”
Prayer & Inspiration
This beautiful prayer of consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus was written by St. Margaret Mary Alocoque (1647-1690), the French nun and mystic who promulgated the Sacred Heart devotion, in a letter of spiritual direction to a fellow religious sister, Sister Felice-Madeleine de la Barge, at the Moulins monastery in France.
It is the heart of Jesus that was pierced on the cross for our redemption; not just for all mankind in general, but for each person in particular. This popular litany honors and praises that Sacred Heart which suffered and died out of inexpressible love for each one of us.
This hymn is traditionally sung in the liturgy for the feast of Pentecost, and other occasions when the Holy Spirit is solemnly invoked. The Veni, Creator Spiritus is also the official opening prayer for Church councils and synods.
Historically, this Marian title is closely connected with the Church triumphing over her enemies through the protection and intercession of the Blessed Mother. Mary under her title Help of Christians was the special devotion of St. John Bosco and the Salesian order he founded. This was based on his Prophetic Vision of the Two Columns in which he saw the Church being saved through its devotion to Mary, under her title Help of Christians, and the Holy Eucharist.
Historically, the Solemnity of the Ascension is an ancient and major feast for the Church (thus, its status as a holy day of obligation). In order to think of it and treat it with the same reverence as Christians of days past, it helps to understand it more deeply. Here are three aspects of Ascension Thursday that we can reflect on today.
This beautiful prayer is attributed to St. Brendan the Navigator (484-577 A.D.), also known as St. Brendan the Voyager, an ancient Irish monk, abbot, sailor, and explorer. He is the patron saint of mariners, sailors, travelers, and the U.S. Navy. His feast day is May 16th.
On May 13th, 1917, Our Lady appeared for the first time to three shepherd children in Fatima, Portugal. Between May and October she appeared five more times. She urged the children to pray the rosary daily for peace in the world and to make sacrifices for the conversion of sinners. Over the course of these visits and several preceding visits by an angel, five prayers were given to Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta.
The following is a powerful passage in the Dialogue of St. Catherine of Siena. In this great spiritual classic, which made St. Catherine of Siena a Doctor of the Church, she records her mystical conversations with Jesus. St. Catherine of Siena died at the age of 33 after suffering a demonic spiritual assault, willingly giving her life for the sanctification of the Church.
Though often associated with healing, St. Bernadette has an important lesson to teach us about suffering. She endured sickness throughout her life. As a child she suffered from severe asthma and was weak and sickly. Added to that was the pain that being a visionary caused her—the jealousy, suspicion, and rejection of others. Throughout much of her time living with the Sisters of Nevers she struggled with a very painful tubercular tumor in the bone of her right knee.