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Sunday in the Second Week of Lent





 

Martyrology - 5th of March

Upon the 5th day of March, were born into the better life:


At Antioch, [about the year 320,] the holy martyr Phocas. For the Redeemer's name's sake he gained the victory over many an assault of the old serpent, and that victory is still held forth before the people, with this miracle, that if any be bitten of a serpent and touch in faith the door of this martyr's church, he is forthwith healed of the poison.

At Cassarea, in Palestine, [in the year 308,] the holy martyr Hadrian, who was crowned by command of the President Firmilian, in the persecution under the Emperor Diocletian. He was first thrown to a lion, but afterward slain with the sword.

On the same day, the holy martyr Eusebius, and nine others.

At Caesarea, in Palestine, [in the year 200,] holy Theophilus, Bishop of that see, who was a great light for wisdom and good living in the time of the Emperor Severus.

Likewise in Palestine, on the bank of the Jordan, [in the year 475,] the holy hermit Gerasimus, who flourished in the time of the Emperor Zeno.

At Naples, [in the year 1734,] holy John Joseph of the Cross, barefooted Friar Minor, first Provincial of the Italian followers of holy Peter of Alcantara. He strove to tread in the footsteps of holy Francis of Assisi and Peter of Alcantara, was a bright ornament of the Seraphic Order, and was numbered among the saints by Pope Gregory XVI.


And elsewhere many other Holy Martyrs, Confessors and Holy virgins.


R. Thanks be to God

 

Morning Prayer


In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.


Place Yourself in the Presence of God, and adore His holy Name.


Most holy and adorable Trinity, one God in three Persons, I believe that Thou art here present: I adore Thee with the deepest humility, and render to Thee, with my whole heart, the homage which is due to Thy sovereign majesty.


An Act of Faith

O my God, I firmly believe that Thou art one God in three divine Persons, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; I believe that Thy divine Son became man, and died for our sins, and that He will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe these and all the truths which the holy Catholic Church teaches, because Thou hast revealed them, who canst neither deceive nor be deceived.


An Act of Hope


O my God, relying on Thy infinite goodness and promises, I hope to obtain pardon of my sins, the help of Thy grace, and life everlasting, through the merits of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Redeemer.


An Act of Love


O my God, I love Thee above all things, with my whole heart and soul, because Thou art all-good and worthy of all love. I love my neighbour as myself for the love of Thee. I forgive all who have injured me, and ask pardon of all whom I have injured.


Thank God for All Favours and Offer Yourself to Him.


O my God, I most humbly thank Thee for all the favours Thou hast bestowed upon me up to the present moment. I give Thee thanks from the bottom of my heart that Thou hast created me after Thine own image and likeness, that Thou hast redeemed me by the precious blood of Thy dear Son, and that Thou hast preserved me and brought me safe to the beginning of another day. I offer to Thee, O Lord, my whole being, and in particular all my thoughts, words, actions, and sufferings of this day. I consecrate them all to the glory of Thy name, beseeching Thee that through the infinite merits of Jesus Christ my Saviour they may all find acceptance in Thy sight. May Thy divine love animate them, and may they all tend to Thy greater glory.


Resolve to Avoid Sin and to Practice Virtue.


Adorable Jesus, my Saviour and Master, model of all perfection, I resolve and will endeavour this day to imitate Thy example, to be, like Thee, mild, humble, chaste, zealous, charitable, and resigned. I will redouble my efforts that I may not fall this day into any of those sins which I have heretofore committed (here name any besetting sin), and which I sincerely desire to forsake.


Ask God for the Necessary Graces.


O my God, Thou knowest my poverty and weakness, and that I am unable to do anything good without Thee; deny me not, O God, the help of Thy grace; proportion it to my necessities; give me strength to avoid anything evil which Thou forbiddest, and to practise the good which Thou hast commanded; and enable me to bear patiently all the trials which it may please Thee to send me.


The Lord’s Prayer...

The Hail Mary...

The Apostles’ Creed...


At this point, please go to the relevant text of Fr Hamon’s Meditation. Once I have read and meditated on the text, and its various points . I complete my meditation by saying:

Evening Prayer


 

Sunday in the Second Week: The Transfiguration


At that time Jesus taketh unto Him Peter, and James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into a high mountain apart; and He was transfigured before them. And His face did shine as the sun, and His garments became white as snow. And behold there appeared to them Moses and Elijah talking with Him. And Peter answering said to Jesus: Lord, it is good for us to be here; if Thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles, one for Thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah. And as he was yet speaking, behold a bright cloud overshaded them; and lo, a voice out of the cloud saying, This is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased; hear ye Him. And the disciples hearing fell upon their faces, and were very much afraid; and Jesus came and touched them, and said to them, Arise, and fear not. And they lifting up their eyes saw no one, but only Jesus. And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them saying: Tell the vision to no man till the Son of man be risen from the dead.


Summary of the Morrow’s Meditation


We will consecrate the whole of next week to meditating upon the gospel of tomorrow which contains the recital of the mystery of the Transfiguration. We will meditate tomorrow upon the two first circumstances which are the choice made by Jesus Christ for the Transfiguration: first, of a place apart and solitary (Matt. xvii:1); second, of a high mountain. We will then make the resolution: first, not to frequent the world excepting from necessity and to love to be alone with God only; second, to detach ourselves from everything to which our heart is still bound here below. Our spiritual nosegay shall be the words of our meditation: “Jesus led His disciples to a high mountain apart.


Meditation for the Morning


Let us transport ourselves in spirit upon Thabor; let us admire the choice which Our Lord made of this solitary place, apart from the world, of this high mountain which rises nearer heaven. There is in this choice a double secret reason. Let us beg God to enable us to understand it.

Why Our Lord chose for his transfiguration a place apart from the world


By this choice Our Saviour wills to teach us that it is not in the midst of the world and of worldly thoughts that God reveals Himself to the soul and makes it pass from the miseries of the old man to the splendours and virtues of the new man. In order to see God, to hear Him, to enjoy Him, and to be transformed into Him by His grace, the first condition required is interior solitude; that is to say, the calm of the soul closed to the turmoil of creatures, open to God alone and to His divine inspirations, the peace of recollection beneath the eye of God. As long as we indulge in dissipation of the mind, the wanderings of the imagination, the affairs of this world, wooed by attachments, the tumult of useless thoughts; as long, finally, as we do not live in retirement in the solitude of the heart, God will not show Himself to us, and He will only be to us the unknown God of Athens. His amiabilities and His infinite perfections will not touch us; we shall not love Him, and we shall have no desire to love Him. Strangers to God, we shall be no less strangers to ourselves; we shall not know ourselves, and we shall see nothing in ourselves to correct, nothing to reform, no reason to humble ourselves, to mortify ourselves, to renounce ourselves; and the whole of our life will be spent in forgetfulness of God and in ignorance of ourselves. O dissipation, what harm you do to the soul! O holy recollection, how necessary you are to it! Lead me, O Lord, like Thy apostles, into solitude, and keep my mind and my heart always shut up there!


Why Our Lord chose a high mountain for his transfiguration


This elevated place, where the apostles were raised above the objects amidst which they had hitherto lived, signifies that, in order to enjoy God, to merit His grace and to sanctify ourselves, we must have a heart raised above all sensible things; a heart greater and higher than the world; we must tread under foot everything that formerly attached us. As long as we cling to anything here below, as long as there is anything on earth which holds us in chains, we shall only crawl miserably in the same paths, and turn round and round in the labyrinth of our miseries, instead of advancing in virtue and strengthening ourselves. If our soul had the wings of the dove, for which the prophet king prayed, in order to fly away into the bosom of God, so long as it remains attached even by only one single thread, it will never be anything else but struggle and torment itself painfully about what retains it, without ever being able to take its flight. But also, if the soul has at last courage enough to break its chains, if it allows itself to be led by Our Lord up the mountain, and if from thence it treads under foot all the vain objects of its attachments, its progress in perfection will immediately begin.


In a single day, and with less trouble, it will make more way than it did during the whole time that it dragged along after it the weight to which it was attached. Nothing will retard it on its course, nothing will restrain or distract it from its progress; it will advance easily and freely; for as the Imitation says: “What is more free than lie who is attached to nothing upon earth?” If, then, we desire to become solidly virtuous, we must detach ourselves from all that flatters vanity, from all that nourishes effeminacy, from all which piques curiosity, from the frivolities which amuse, the affairs which distract, the society which dissipates us; we must renounce the passion of pleasure and enjoyment, we must not any longer cling so much to earthly comforts; we must satisfy our necessities with discernment, take things only insofar as we really need them, and touch them as it were only lightly and for the moment, like the soldiers of Gideon, or like Jonathan, who took the honey on the end of his staff without making a halt; above all, we must be detached from ourselves, from our tastes and our likings, from our self-will and its caprices, from our self-love and its ambition, which seeks to place itself in all that it says, and to find itself in all that it does; we must break off the excessive care for our health which renders us sensitive in respect to all that annoys and restrains the senses; we must, lastly, rise above ourselves (Lam. iii:28), and under the penalty of being lost, we must empty our heart of all that is not God. At what point have we arrived in regard to this universal detachment? It is a more serious question than we think. Let us think of it seriously, and let us labour at it every day.



Resolutions and spiritual nosegay as above.


 



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