The volume of the breviary I have with me has a beautiful picture of Our Lady of Mount Carmel… I simply opened the breviary on a little corner shelf above my bed to the left. When I am sitting at the table I only have to glance up in order to see her, and when I am in bed my glance falls directly on the Virgin with the star, “The Hope of All Carmelites.”
Saint Titus Brandsma
Scheveningen Prison, 27 January 1942
On 15 May 2022, the Order of Carmelites and the entire family of Carmel rejoiced to hear the Prefect of the Congregation of the Causes of the Saints pronounce these words: “Most Holy Father, Holy Mother Church beseeches Your Holiness to enroll Blessed Titus Brandsma… among the saints.”
Nine other Blesseds were canonized that day, so Carmel’s joy was increased when Titus Brandsma’s name was the first to be pronounced. Cardinal Marcello Semeraro, by asking for the honors of the altar to be bestowed upon Titus, beseeched the Sovereign Pontiff that Saint Titus “may be invoked as such by all the Christian faithful.”
Saint Titus Brandsma, like any good Carmelite, had a profound love for Our Lady that nourished his life as a scholar, spiritual adviser, author, preacher, and prisoner. A fine collection of his works has been translated into English.
In this novena, we will pray with Saint Titus Brandsma as we reflect on excerpts from his Marian writings, that he might teach us how to turn to Our Lady, “Hope of All Carmelites”. May God bless us all as we pray together.
Mary, our guide on the way to union with God
Jesus is forced to cause his Mother to suffer
A pledge of Mary’s protection
St. Simon Stock founded a cloister in Haarlem
Pray with Mary the Mother of the Lord
Mary is the clearest pane of glass
The statue of Mary glimmers in the light
Overshadowed in the most perfect way
Reverence and motherly compassion
O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.
O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.
Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!
English translations of the writings of Saint Titus Brandsma and their source texts are owned by the Titus Brandsma Institute and the Dutch Carmelite Province. The translators vary from one source text to another. The texts are freely available for personal use. We are deeply grateful to the Titus Brandsma Institute for providing these translations. For questions or requests contact the Titus Brandsma Institute.
All scripture references are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright © 1989, 1993 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America as accessed from the Bible Gateway website.
Don’t become discouraged and give up prayer, says St. John of the Cross. We offer varying novenas to Our Lady of Mount Carmel, as well as novenas to St. Joseph, St. Teresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross, St. Thérèse of Lisieux, Sts. Louis and Zélie Martin, St. Elizabeth of the Trinity, and St. Edith Stein.Let us unite in prayer