Quote of the day: 23 June

With the Virgin, you can sing your “Magnificat” and leap with joy in God your Savior, for the Almighty is doing great things in you, and His mercy is eternal. . . . Then, like Mary, “keep all that in your heart,” draw your heart very close to hers, for this priestly Virgin is also the “Mother of Divine Grace,” and in her love she wants to prepare you to become “that faithful priest who is entirely according to God’s heart” of whom He speaks in Holy Scripture.

Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity
Letter 232 to Abbé Chevignard (excerpt)
Around 25 June 1905

 

ND de Palestine Holy Land Franciscans Wash DC monastery
Notre-Dame de Palestine | paullew / Flickr

 

Excerpt from Letter 232, The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel 
Copyright © 2003 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc.
Published by ICS Publications, Washington DC

The perfume vase

J.M.J.T.

July 22, 1897 – Feast of St. Magdalene

Jesus +

“Let the just man break me out of compassion for sinners, let the oil with which one perfumes his head not weaken mine.”

I cannot be broken, tried, except by the just, since all my Sisters are pleasing to God. It is less bitter to be broken by a sinner than by a just man; but out of compassion for sinners in order to obtain their conversion, I ask You, oh, my God! that I may be broken for them by the just souls who surround me.

I ask You, too, that the oil of praise so sweet to nature may not weaken my head, that is, my mind, by making me believe I possess virtues that I have hardly practiced several times. Oh, Jesus, Your name is like oil poured out; it is in this divine perfume that I want to bathe myself entirely, far from the eyes of creatures….

Thérèse of the Child Jesus
Letter 259 to Sr. Geneviève

Mary Magdalene LA TOUR Georges LACMA
The Magdalen with the Smoking Flame
Georges de La Tour (French, 1593-1652)
Oil on canvas, 1635-37
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)

 

View the original manuscript of St. Thérèse’s letter to Sr. Geneviève—her sister Paulineat the website of the Archives of the Carmel of Lisieux.

Quote of the day: 22 July

Saint Thérèse of Lisieux

The last words of Manuscript C

Manuscript C, folios 36 verso and 37 recto


My dear Mother, now I would like to tell you what I understand by the fragrance of the perfumes of the Beloved.

Since Jesus has re-ascended to Heaven, I can only follow him through the footprints that he left, but how illuminated are these footprints, how aromatic they are! I only have to cast my eyes on the holy gospel; all of a sudden I’m breathing in the perfumes of the life of Jesus and I know on which side to run…

It’s not the first place, but the last place that I aim for; rather than moving forward with the pharisee, I repeat, full of trust, the humble prayer of the tax-collector;

but above all I imitate the conduct of Magdalene: her astonishing—or rather her loving audacity—that charms the Heart of Jesus, seduces mine.

Yes, I feel it, even if I had on my conscience all the sins that can be committed, I would go—my heart, broken in repentance—throw myself in the arms of Jesus because I know how much he cherishes the prodigal child who comes back to Him.

It’s not because the good God, in his prevenient mercy, has preserved my soul from mortal sin that I raise myself to Him through trust and love…

 

MsC36v j'imite la Madeleine (crop)
But above all I imitate the conduct of Magdalene: her astonishing—or rather her loving audacity—that charms the Heart of Jesus, seduces mine. | Archives of the Carmel of Lisieux (used by permission)

 


Renowned Discalced Carmelite scholar Father François-Marie Léthel concluded Meditation 8 of the 2011 Lenten Exercises for the Roman Curia by citing this final paragraph from Manuscript C. He also notes that, at the same moment, Thérèse writes to her spiritual brother Bellière:

You love St. Augustine, St. Magdalene; these souls to whom “many sins were forgiven because they loved much”. Me too, I love them; I love their repentance, and especially… their loving audacity! When I see Magdalene come forward in the midst of the numerous guests, showering the feet of her adorable Master with her tears, that she’s touching for the first time, I sense that her heart has understood the abysses of love and mercy of the Heart of Jesus and that, total sinner that she is, this Heart of love is not only disposed to pardon her but still more to lavish upon her the benefits of his divine intimacy, to lift her up to the highest summits of contemplation. Ah! my dear little Brother, since it was given to me also to understand the love of the Heart of Jesus, I admit to you that has chased away all fear from my heart. The memory of my faults humiliates me, it brings me to never learn on my strength, which is only a weakness, but even more this memory speaks to me of mercy and love. How—when you throw your faults with total, filial trust in the burning all-consuming brazier of love—how wouldn’t they be consumed without coming back?”

Read Father John Clarke’s translation of Letter 247 from Saint Thérèse to Abbé Maurice Bellière (21 June 1897) here.

 


Nota Bene: We have elected to be as faithful to the original text as possible in our translation, avoiding a re-cast into contemporary idioms. There is the age-old question among translators of French: does avoir confiance mean to be confident, to have confidence, or does it mean to trust? As an example, again and again today, theological translators agree: the best and truest translation of Jésus, j’ai confiance en toi is, Jesus, I trust in you.

 

Lethel, François-Marie. (2011) La Lumière du Christ dans le Coeur de l'Église: Jean-Paul II et la théologie des saints. 
© 2011, Librairie Éditrice Vaticane. Pour la langue française: © Éditions Parole et Silence, 2011.
Translations from the French are the blogger’s own work product and may not be reproduced without permission.

 

 

Quote of the day: 21 July

Over time, few devotions have been so extensively promoted as the devotion to the Holy Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.

It is so intimately connected with the life of the Catholic, that it provokes more attention when particular Catholics do not practice it, than when it is visibly part of their life.

In 1595, however, Mag. Joseph Falcone published a work on the history of the Order, in which as a contemporary he declared that this devotion blossomed, especially in Spain, and that there was no house where people did not wear the garment of Carmel, indeed, through the common wearing of that garment, the whole of Spain and Portugal could be said to be one great cloister of Carmelites.

For a long time, people believed that when it came to the Netherlands, any indication that the Scapular was also worn here was missed.

Admittedly, not many traces of this devotion have remained but, all the same, they do tell us that the Netherlands did not trail behind other countries.

We possess a poem by a layperson, from the end of the fifteenth-century, which sings the praises of the Scapular.

The translation of this text reads as follows:

We see the Carmelites clothed with Scapulars who—from the hands of the Holy Simon Stock when he, as a foretaste of the reward for his devotion to the Holy Virgin Mary, having been graced to contemplate her, Mary, with this garment in her virginal hands—have accepted the cited Scapular with incredible zeal as their garment.

We can say frankly that in our country all priests could be said to be promoters of this beautiful devotion and, thanks to the piety of their priests, nearly all Catholics in the Netherlands have received the garment of the Lady of Mount Carmel. What Falcone said of Spain at the end of the 16th century may surely be said of the Netherlands today: There is no house where, to be blessed with the countless indulgences and privileges of the Carmelite Order, one does not wear the garment of Carmel.

Blessed Titus Brandsma
Promoting the Holy Scapular in the Netherlands (excerpts)

 

NDMC Simon Stock Baitenhausen_Kirche_Prozessionsfahne
The Blessed Virgin Mary appears to St. Simon Stock
Processional banner, early 18th c. attributed to A. Bastian
Pilgrimage Church Maria zum Berge Carmel
Baitenhausen, Meersburg, Bodenseekreis, Germany
Andreas Praefcke/Wikimedia Commons

 

English translation of fragments of ‘De verspreiding van het H. Scapulier in Nederland’
by Susan Verkerk-Wheatley / Anne-Marie Bos
Translation: Susan Verkerk-Wheatley / Anne-Marie Bos  © Titus Brandsma Instituut 2019

 

 

Quote of the day: 20 July

“But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a solitary broom tree. He asked that he might die: ‘It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life, for I am no better than my ancestors’” (1 Kg 19:4).

The previous verse tells us why Elijah decides to go to the desert and wants to die: “He was afraid; he got up and fled for his life” (1 Kg 19:3).

Elijah was a great prophet, a man of God, and a giant of the faith. Even the great men of God can suffer moments of crisis and fear, as in this case with the prophet Elijah, who flees in fear before the threats and persecution of the powerful Phoenician queen Jezebel.

The prophet’s crisis, however, becomes a moment of grace because God approaches him in the desert and feeds him, giving him new strength to live.

Elijah goes to the desert, lies down and goes to sleep. He’s just waiting to die. “It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life, for I am no better than my ancestors” (1 Kings 19:4). Like so many other believers in the Bible, Elijah complains before God. All that remains is to throw in the towel; everything has been useless.

And further, now Elijah is afraid. Fear leads Elijah not only to run away but also to fall asleep. Falling asleep is to remain unconscious, in a certain way: it’s an escape from reality.

However, when things turn dark; when what’s transpired becomes indecipherable and the future, uncertain: that’s when we have to be wide awake.

 

BAEZ - We must not turn off the light IGsize

 

We must not turn off the light of conscience and discernment, for that is when we must be more clear-headed than ever.

The biblical story tells us that Elijah was awakened and fed by God, because God doesn’t want anyone to be asleep and fearful.

The prophet turns to hear the word of the Lord through an angel, saying two times: “Get up and eat” (1 Kings 19:5).  After eating the first time, Elijah goes back to sleep.

Sometimes the crisis is so great
and the discouragement is so strong
that it is difficult to get up and walk.

But God is not overcome by our weakness; God insists for the second time in feeding Elijah: “Get up and eat, otherwise the journey will be too much for you” (1 Kings 19:7). God doesn’t want us to feel fearful, neither does he want us to sleep.

God offered Elijah—through his messenger—frugal and simple food: a pilgrim’s meal (“a cake baked on hot stones” and “a jar of water”, 1 Kings 19:6). At that moment you don’t need a succulent feast, but effective nutrition. That kind of effective nutrition to recover strength and hope, only God can provide. Elijah ate and “he went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb the mount of God” (1 Kings 19:8).

Before eating, the prophet’s flight was headed toward death; after being fed in the desert, that miraculous meal takes him to Mount Horeb or Sinai, where Moses met the Lord, where Israel first made a covenant with its God. God began everything on that mountain.

 

Sinai Sunrise Richard White Blogfeatimage
Elijah goes to that mountain—where the whole history of the covenant started—to begin again, renewed by God’s strength, and to be able to continue as a man, as a believer, and as a prophet.

 

Elijah fought against the injustice and arrogance of the powerful, the manipulation of religion, the violent repression, and the use of fear as a form of domination. All of these shady schemes are opposed to God’s plan.

Elijah gave everything. In the end, in self-imposed exile, escaping to protect himself from the death threats of Queen Jezebel, he falls down, tired and hopeless, in the desert. He was tempted not to keep fighting, dreaming, and hoping. It can happen to anyone.

The biblical text, however, gives us the certainty that God’s nourishment allows us to come out of our unconscious state and overcome fear—not letting anyone deprive us of hope. The bread that God gives us in the desert is more powerful than the wiles and threats of the shadowy structures of oppression and death.

Today, too, we need a bread that is mysterious and effective, that allows us to walk with strength and hope.

That bread is Jesus, who today has told us: “I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats of this bread will live forever” (Jn 6:51). Jesus offers to nourish us so as to give us strength, light, hope, and the breath of life that come from the same God, the creator of life.

If Jesus nourishes us with his love and kindness, with his light and with his strength, nothing can take away our joy and hope. In our interior, in the depths of our heart, God feeds us with his Son, the Bread come down from heaven.

 

Divine Liturgy Eucharistic Prayer St Petersburg Theological Academy Flickr
In our interior,
in the depths of our heart,
God feeds us with his Son,
the Bread come down from heaven
Saint-Petersburg Theological Academy / Flickr

 

We have heard Jesus say: “No one can come to me unless drawn by the Father who sent me.” The Father mysteriously draws us to Jesus; he makes Jesus attractive to us. And if Jesus presents himself again to us—attractive, fascinating, familiar in the depths of our being—we are attracted to the good, the beautiful, the noble.

If Jesus makes us attractive, we will be fascinating and attractive, which does good for the human person—which builds a better world.

 

Bishop Silvio José Báez, O.C.D.

Auxiliary Bishop of Managua
Homily, 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time (excerpts)
12 August 2018 

 

You can read the full text of the homily on our blog here.

Elijah: Fear and Hope

19th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B)

Homily of H.E. Bishop Silvio José Báez, O.C.D.
Parish of San Anthony of Mount Tabor, Managua
12th August 2018


Today’s first reading (1 Kings 19:4-8) tells us about the prophet Elijah, who one day is filled with fear and goes to the desert because, disappointed in himself, in religion, and in the society in which he lives, he wants to die: “But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a solitary broom tree. He asked that he might die: ‘It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life, for I am no better than my ancestors’” (1 Kg 19:4).

The previous verse tells us why Elijah decides to go to the desert and wants to die: “He was afraid; he got up and fled for his life” (1 Kg 19:3). He had made a great effort for years to show the people the true face of God; he had committed himself completely so that the people of Israel would keep the faith intact against the religion of the false god Baal and defend the poor against the acts of violence and injustice of King Ahab and his wife Jezebel, the royal couple who ruled at that time.

Elijah was a great prophet, a man of God, and a giant of the faith.

After having defeated the false prophets of the queen, unmasking the religious deceptions of the royal couple with which they dominated the people, and having denounced the great acts of injustice they committed, the queen had persecuted him and threatened to kill him. The prophet is afraid and runs away. Nelson Mandela said that “the brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”

Even the great men of God can suffer moments of crisis and fear, as in this case with the prophet Elijah, who flees in fear before the threats and persecution of the powerful Phoenician queen Jezebel who ruled at that time in Israel. A prophet of God was running away from a soulless woman, whose will was supposed to be the law; who was the manipulator of religion; she who was the unjust and violent one. The prophet is afraid and flees to the desert.

 

Leighton, Frederic, 1830-1896; Elijah in the Wilderness
Elijah in the Wilderness
Frederic Leighton (British, 1830–1896)
Oil on canvas, 1877-78
Walker Art Gallery

 

The prophet’s crisis, however, becomes a moment of grace because God approaches him in the desert and feeds him, giving him new strength to live.

Elijah goes to the desert, lies down and goes to sleep. He’s just waiting to die. The fact that Elijah lies down and wishes for death shows the drama of the moment he is experiencing: “It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life, for I am no better than my ancestors” (1 Kings 19:4).

Like so many other believers in the Bible, Elijah complains before God and goes on about the weariness of his life, the fatigue of the struggle, the temptation to make the final withdrawal. All that remains is to throw in the towel; everything has been useless. He has probably experienced that his prophetic ministry and his efforts to fight against Baalism and against the injustice of the system in Israel have proved to be of little value.

In reality, nothing has changed and now his life is threatened.

And further, now Elijah is afraid. The powerful queen has intimidated him and threatened to take his life. To dominate others, fear is the most effective instrument. It is the preferred weapon of oppressors. Fear leads Elijah not only to run away but also to fall asleep. Falling asleep is to remain unconscious, in a certain way: it’s an escape from reality.

However, when things turn dark; when what’s transpired becomes indecipherable and the future, uncertain: that’s when we have to be wide awake. We must not turn off the light of conscience and discernment, for that is when we must be more clear-headed than ever. Poor Elijah. Defeated. Full of fear, running away from Queen Jezebel, running away from reality, and running away from himself.

 

BAEZ - We must not turn off the light IGsize

 

The biblical story tells us that Elijah was awakened and fed by God, because God doesn’t want anyone to be asleep and fearful. Precisely at the moment of the greatest darkness and fatigue is when the prophet turns to hear the word of the Lord through an angel, saying two times: “Get up and eat” (1 Kings 19:5).  After eating the first time, Elijah goes back to sleep. Sometimes the crisis is so great and the discouragement is so strong that it is difficult to get up and walk.

God is not overcome by our weakness

God insists for the second time in feeding him: “Get up and eat, otherwise the journey will be too much for you” (1 Kings 19:7). God doesn’t want us to feel fearful, neither does he want us to sleep. That is why he feeds the prophet, as he feeds all of us when we feel fallen, frustrated, and hopeless. God makes the boundary seem like it becomes a new horizon; what is experienced as death is transformed into the beginning of a new life.

 

Leighton, Frederic, 1830-1896; Elijah in the Wilderness
That kind of effective nutrition to recover strength and hope, only God can provide.

 

God offered Elijah—through his messenger—frugal and simple food: a pilgrim’s meal (“a cake baked on hot stones” and “a jar of water”, 1 Kings 19:6). At that moment you don’t need a succulent feast, but effective nutrition. That kind of effective nutrition to recover strength and hope, only God can provide. Elijah ate and “he went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb the mount of God” (1 Kings 19:8).

Before eating, the prophet’s flight was headed toward death; after being fed in the desert, that miraculous meal takes him to Mount Horeb or Sinai, where Moses met the Lord, where Israel first made a covenant with its God. God began everything on that mountain. Elijah goes to that mountainwhere the whole history of the covenant startedto begin again, renewed by God’s strength, and to be able to continue as a man, as a believer, and as a prophet.

 

 

SONY DSC
God began everything on that mountain. | Phillip Marsh / Flickr

 

We who are living in the current drama of our society know about the injustice and arrogance of the powerful, the manipulation of religion, violent repression, and the use of fear as a form of domination. All of these shady schemes are opposed to God’s plan.

Elijah fought against all of this. He gave everything. In the end, in self-imposed exile, escaping to protect himself from the death threats of Queen Jezebel, he falls down, tired and hopeless, in the desert. He was tempted not to keep fighting, dreaming, and hoping. It can happen to anyone.

 

BAEZ - Elijah was tempted not to keep fighting TWsize

 

The biblical text, however, gives us the certainty that God’s nourishment allows us to come out of our unconscious state and overcome fearnot letting anyone deprive us of hopeto keep moving forward to build a freer and more democratic country. The bread that God gives us in the desert is more powerful than the wiles and threats of the shadowy structures of oppression and death.

We have the right to dream of a Nicaragua without rulers who oppress the people, where the dignity and rights of every person are respected, where we put off particular interests to share our goods and concerns in peace and justice, and where dissent from power is not a crime.

 

BAEZ - I dream of a Nicararagua

 

Today, too, we need a bread that is mysterious and effective, that allows us to walk with strength and hope.

That bread is Jesus, who today has told us: “I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats of this bread will live forever” (Jn 6:51). Jesus offers to nourish us so as to give us strength, light, hope, and the breath of life that come from the same God, the creator of life.

If Jesus nourishes us with his love and kindness, with his light and with his strength, nothing can take away our joy and hope. In our interior, in the depths of our heart, God feeds us with his Son, the Bread come down from heaven.

 

Divine Liturgy Eucharistic Prayer St Petersburg Theological Academy Flickr
In our interior,
in the depths of our heart,
God feeds us with his Son,
the Bread come down from heaven
Saint-Petersburg Theological Academy / Flickr

 

We have heard Jesus today who told us: “No one can come to me unless drawn by the Father who sent me.” The Father mysteriously draws us to Jesus; he makes Jesus attractive to us. And if Jesus presents himself again to us—attractive, fascinating, familiar in the depths of our being—we are attracted to the good, the beautiful, the noble; we will prefer honesty instead of corruption, truth instead of lies, peace rather than violence.

If Jesus makes us attractive, we will be fascinating and attractive, which does good for the human person—which builds a better world.

 


Ocupa INSS protest 20jun13
† Silvio José Baez, O.C.D. is the Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Managua; when he speaks of the “current drama of our society” he refers to the regime of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega and his wife, Vice President Rosario Murillo. The Organization of American States commissioned a Group of Independent Experts to study the violence that occurred during the first six weeks of protests in 2018 after the government announced cutbacks to Social Security pensions. The official report was clear-cut: the Ortega-Murillo police and paramilitary forces committed crimes against humanity. However, the grievances of the people are not recent; in this photo, the youth turned out to support older adults when Social Security pension cutbacks were first announced in June 2013. The sign says, “in Ortega and Murillo’s government, senior citizens have no rights.” Learn more about the 2013 protests here. Learn more about the 2018 unrest and the challenges for the Catholic Church in Nicaragua here. Listen to Bishop Báez deliver this homily in Spanish at San Antonio en Monte Tabor parish here.| Jorge Mejía Peralta / Flickr

 

This English translation is the blogger’s own work product and may not be reproduced without permission.

20 July: Saint Elijah

July 20
SAINT ELIJAH
Prophet and Our Father

Solemnity (O.Carm.)
Feast (O.C.D.)

The prophet Elijah appears in Scripture as a man of God who lived always in His presence and fought zealously for the worship of the one God. He defended God’s law in a solemn contact on Mt. Carmel, and afterwards was given on Mt. Horeb an intimate experience of the living God. The hermits who instituted a form of monastic life in honor of Our Lady on Mt. Carmel in the twelfth century, followed monastic tradition in turning to Elijah as their Father and model.

Evening Prayer I

Hymn

Let the sun, rising, hear your prise, Elijah,
Earth, sky, and water, hear our jubilation
To the sun’s setting, glory of your people,
Strength of our Order.

O light of heaven’s radiant beauty glowing,
Mighty in wonder, blessed in your merits,
Many times witness of his greatest marvels
By the Lord chosen.

Fiery the chariot, drawn by fiery horses,
Upwards in triumph, swiftly angels bear you
Blazing in glory beyond earthly beauty
Shining from heaven.

You were the witness, Moses your companion,
To the bright glory of the sole-Begotten,
As the Apostles gazed and fell in wonder
High on Mount Tabor.

Stay with us now and shield us with your favor.
We are your children; trustingly we ask you
Stretch out your hand and grant us your protection
Guarding us always.

Praise to the Father, to the sole-Begotten,
Praise to their Holy Coeternal Spirit,
Kingdom and power, glory and dominion,
Now and forever.

11.11.11.5.
Audiat miras oriens cadensque
Tr. by Mary Paula, O.C.D.

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Elijah arose like a fire, and his word burned like a torch.

Psalm 111

I will thank the Lord with all my heart *
In the meeting of the just and their assembly.
Great are the works of the Lord, *
to be pondered by all who love them.

Majestic and glorious his work, *
his justice stands firm for ever.
He makes us remember his wonders. *
The Lord is compassion and love.

He gives food to those who fear him; *
keeps his covenant ever in mind.
He has shown his might to his people *
by giving them the lands of the nations.

His works are justice and truth: *
his precepts are all of them sure,
standing firm for ever and ever: *
they are made in uprightness and truth.

He has sent deliverance to his people †
and established his covenant for ever. *
Holy his name, to be feared.

To fear the Lord is the first stage of wisdom; †
all who do so prove themselves wise. *
His praise shall last for ever!

Ant. Elijah arose like a fire, and his word burned like a torch.

Ant. 2 How long will you limp between two sides? If the Lord is God, follow him.

Psalm 115

Not to us, Lord, not to us, *
but to your name give the glory
for the sake of your love and your truth, *
lest the heathen say: ‘Where is their God?’

But our God is in the heavens; *
he does whatever he wills.
Their idols are silver and gold, *
the work of human hands.

They have mouths but they cannot speak; *
they have eyes but they cannot see;
they have ears but they cannot hear; *
they have nostrils but they cannot smell.

With their hands they cannot feel; †
with their feet they cannot walk. *
No sound comes from their throats.
Their makers will come to be like them *
and so will all who trust in them.

Sons of Israel, trust in the Lord; *
he is their help and their shield.
Sons of Aaron, trust in the Lord; *
he is their help and their shield.

You who fear him, trust in the Lord; *
he is their help and their shield.

He remembers us, and he will bless us; †
he will bless the sons of Israel. *
He will bless the sons of Aaron.

The Lord will bless those who fear him, *
the little no less than the great:
to you may the Lord grant increase, *
to you and all your children.

May you be blessed by the Lord, *
the maker of heaven and earth.
The heavens belong to the Lord, *
but the earth he has given to men.

The dead shall not praise the Lord, *
nor those who go down into the silence.
But we who live bless the Lord *
now and for ever. Amen.

Ant. How long will you limp between two sides? If the Lord is God, follow him.

Ant. 3 The Lord will reward his servants the prophets.

Canticle: Rev 11:17-18; 12:10-12

We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, *
who are and who were,
that you have taken your great power *
and begun to reign.

The nations raged, *
but your wrath came,
and the time for the dead to be judged, *
for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints,
and those who fear your name, *
both small and great.

Now the salvation and the power †
and the kingdom of our God *
and the authority of his Christ have come,
for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, *
who accuses them day and night before our God.

And they have conquered him *
by the blood of the Lamb
and by the word of their testimony, *
for they loved not their lives even unto death.
Rejoice, then, O heaven, *
and you that dwell therein.

Ant. The Lord will reward his servants the prophets.

Scripture Reading

James 5:16-18

The prayer of a righteous man has great power in its effects. Elijah was a man of like nature with ourselves and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth its fruit.

Responsory

R/. Blessed are they * who see you. Repeat R/.
V/. And are honored with your friendship * who see you. Glory … R/.

Canticle of Mary

Ant. In former days God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets, but in these last days, he has spoken to us through his Son, whom he has appointed the heir of all things.

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, *
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant, *
and from this day all generations will call me blessed.

The Almighty has done great things for me: *
holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him *
in every generation.

He has shown the strength of his arm, *
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,*
and has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with good things, *
and has sent the rich away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel*
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. In former days God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets, but in these last days, he has spoken to us through his Son, whom he has appointed the heir of all things.

Intercessions

Let us give joyful praise to the living and true God, who chose the prophet Elijah to proclaim his power and mercy; let us say to him:

R/. Lord, make us witnesses of your love.

Lord, you accepted the sacrifice of Elijah and consumed it with fire from heaven; accept our evening sacrifice which we offer for the good of the Church. R/.

When Elijah prayed on the mountain you sent saving rain from heaven; fill us who have been called to Carmel with a spirit of prayer, so that we may draw a shower of grace to the world. R/.

You gave to the prophet Elijah the ministry of reconciling parents and children; make us workers for peace, so that the peace of Christ may reign in the world. R/.

You made Elijah the defender of your honor and of true worship; increase our concern for justice, so that by giving you all that is your due, we may serve our brothers and sisters in the spirit of the Gospel. R/.

You took the prophet Elijah to yourself in a whirlwind of fire; graciously admit our departed brothers and sisters into the embrace of your glory. R/.

Our Father …

Prayer

Almighty, ever living God,
your prophet Elijah, our Father,
lived always in your presence
and was zealous for the honor due to your name.
May we, your servants,
always seek your face
and bear witness to your love.

We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Ivy border media

Invitatory

Ant. Come let us adore the living God, who speaks to us through the prophets.

Office of Readings

HYMN

Great Author of all things that are
To you we sing in joyful praise
Of him, the Thesbite, whom you love,
Elijah, seer of ancient days.

With burning zeal for your blest name
He challenged wicked priests of Baal
And conquering, killed them in his might
To make your sacred law prevail.

The victims offered by his prayer
Drew heaven’s blest consuming flame
In vain Baal’s servants scream and rave,
Their frenzy brings them only shame.

Then Jezebel, unholy queen,
In fury raves, the prophet flees,
Beneath the sheltering juniper
He sleeps and then an angel sees.

The angel offers strengthening bread
With water pure his thirst to end
And marks a journey he must make
Mount Horeb’s summit to ascend.

No food but this for forty days
He journeys through the desert land
Prefiguring the royal feast
Prepared us by the Father’s hand.

To Father, Word and Paraclete
All glory, honor ever be
O undivided Trinity
Through whom creation came to be. Amen.

88.88.
Te magne rerum Conditor

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Lord, I have had enough: take my life, I am no better than my ancestors.

Psalm 11

In the Lord I have taken my refuge. †
How can you say to my soul: *
‘Fly like a bird to its mountain.

‘See the wicked bracing their bow; †
they are fixing their arrows on the string *
to shoot upright men in the dark.
Foundations once destroyed, *
what can the just do?’

The Lord is in his holy temple, *
the Lord, whose throne is in heaven.
His eyes look down on the world; *
his gaze tests mortal men.

The Lord tests the just and the wicked: *
the lover of violence he hates.
He sends fire and brimstone on the wicked; *
he sends a scorching wind as their lot.

The Lord is just and loves justice: *
the upright shall see his face.

Ant. Lord, I have had enough: take my life, I am no better than my ancestors.

Ant. 2 An angel of the Lord said to him: Get up and eat, for there is a great journey before you.

Psalm 28

To you, O Lord, I call, *
my rock, hear me.
If you do not heed I shall become *
like those in the grave.

Hear the voice of my pleading *
as I call for help,
as I lift up my hands in prayer *
to your holy place.

Do not drag me away with the wicked, *
with the evil-doers,
who speak words of peace to their neighbors *
but with evil in their hearts.

Blessed be the Lord for he has heard *
my cry, my appeal.
The Lord is my strength and my shield; *
in him my heart trusts.
I was helped, my heart rejoices *
and I praise him with my song.

The Lord is the strength of his people, *
a fortress where his anointed find help.
Save your people; bless Israel your heritage. *
Be their shepherd and carry them for ever.

Ant. An angel of the Lord said to him: Get up and eat, for there is a great journey before you.

Ant. 3 Elijah ate and drank, and in the strength of that food he walked to the mountain of God.

Psalm 30

I will praise you, Lord, you have rescued me *
and have not let my enemies rejoice over me.

O Lord, I cried to you for help *
and you, my God, have healed me.
O Lord, you have raised my soul from the dead, *
restored me to life from those who sink into the grave.

Sing psalms to the Lord, you who love him, *
give thanks to his holy name.
His anger lasts a moment; his favor all through life. *
At night there are tears, but joy comes with dawn.

I said to myself in my good fortune: *
‘Nothing will ever disturb me.’
Your favor had set me on a mountain fastness, *
then you hid your face and I was put to confusion.

To you, Lord, I cried, *
to my God I made appeal:
‘What profit would my death be, my going to the grave? *
Can dust give you praise or proclaim your truth?’

The Lord listened and had pity. *
The Lord came to my help.
For me you have changed my mourning into dancing, *
you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy.
So my soul sings psalms to you unceasingly. *
O Lord my God, I will thank you forever.

Ant. Elijah ate and drank, and in the strength of that food he walked to the mountain of God.

V/. You are a man of God.
R/. And the word of God in your mouth is true.

The First Reading (Alternative)

1 Kings 19: 4-9a, 11-14a

A reading from the first book of Kings

Elijah walked all the way to the mountain of God

Elijah went a day’s journey into the desert, until he came to a broom tree and sat beneath it. He prayed for death, “This is enough, O Lord! Take my life, for I am no better than my fathers.” He lay down and fell asleep under the broom tree, but then an angel touched him and ordered him to get up and eat. He looked and there at his head was a hearth cake and a jug of water. After he ate and drank, he lay down again, but the angel of the Lord came back a second time, touched him, and ordered, “Get up and eat, else the journey will be too long for you!” He got up, ate and drank; then strengthened by that food, he walked forty days and forty nights to the mountain of God, Horeb. There he came to a cave, where he took shelter.

Then the Lord said, “Go outside and stand on the mountain before the Lord, the Lord will be passing by.” A strong and heavy wind was rending the mountains and crushing rocks before the Lord—but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake—but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake there was fire—but the Lord was not in the fire. After the fire there was a tiny whispering sound. When he heard this, Elijah hid his face in his cloak and went and stood at the entrance of the cave. A voice said to him, “Elijah, why are you here?” He replied, “I have been most zealous for the Lord, the God of hosts.”

Responsory

R/. Leave this place and go eastward, said the Lord to Elijah. * And he went and did as the Lord had said.
V/. Hide yourself by the brook Cherith, and there drink from the stream; and I have commanded ravens to feed you there. * And he went and did as the Lord had said.

The Second Reading

Bk 2, Hom. 1, 17

From a Homily of Pope St. Gregory on the Book of the Prophet Ezekiel

The mystical contemplation of God

In divine contemplation the spirit is often abstracted to such a degree that it is already granted the joy of partaking a little, in image as it were, of that eternal freedom which ‘eye has not seen nor ear heard;’ but then, hampered by the weight of its own mortality, it falls back into the depths and is held captive in penalty for its sins. It has glimpsed the delights of true freedom and longs to escape from its captivity but, since it cannot, it keeps its gaze fixed upon the imprisoning doors. This is why, when the Jews had been freed from slavery to Egypt, each of them stood adoring in the doorway of his tent when God spoke and the pillar of cloud was visible.

Wherever we direct our mental gaze, there we may be said to stand. That is why Elijah said: ‘The Lord lives, in whose sight I stand.’ He did indeed stand before God, for his heart was intent on God. That the Jews gazed at the pillar of cloud and stood at the doors of their tents in adoration, has this meaning: when the human mind perceives these high and heavenly things—albeit in image—the elevation of its thought has already lifted it free from the limits of its bodily habitation; and although it is denied sight of the divine substance, it humbly adores Him whose power it can already see by spiritual illumination.

This is why Elijah is described as standing at the mouth of his cave and veiling his face when he heard the voice of the Lord speaking to him; for as soon as the voice of heavenly understanding enters the mind through the grace of contemplation, the whole man is no longer within the cave, for his soul is no longer taken up with matters of the flesh: intent on leaving the bounds of mortality, he stands at the cave’s mouth.

But if a man stands at the mouth of the cave and hears the word of God with the heart’s ear, he must veil his face. For when heavenly grace leads us to the understanding of higher things, the rarer the heights to which we are raised, the more we should abase ourselves in our own estimation by humility: we must not try to know ‘more than is fitting; we must know as it befits us to know.’ Otherwise, through over-familiarity with the invisible, we risk going astray; and we might perhaps look for material light in what is immaterial. For to cover the face while listening with the ear means hearing with our mind the voice of Him who is within us, yet averting the eyes of the heart from every bodily appearance. If we do this, there will be no risk of our spirit interpreting as something corporeal that which is everywhere in its entirety and everywhere uncircumscribed.

Beloved brothers, we have already learned through our Redeemer’s death, resurrection and ascension into heaven, what the joys of eternity mean, and we know that our fellow-citizens we have known. While our feet stand within the walls of His holy Church, let us keep our hearts facing towards the freedom of our heavenly fatherland. We are still encumbered, it is true, by the many cares of this corruptible life. If then we cannot leave the cave completely, let us at least stand at its mouth, and go out whenever we are granted the favor of doing so by the grace of our Redeemer Who lives and reigns with the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. Amen.

Responsory

R/. The word of the Lord came to Elijah. * Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord.
V/. He went out and stood at the entrance to the cave, and the Lord passed by in the whisper of a gentle breeze. * Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord.

Where the Vigil Office is celebrated:

Canticles

Ant. Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is passing by.

Canticle I  

Jer 17:7-8

Happy are those who put their trust in the Lord 

Happy are those who hear the word of God and keep it (Lk 11:28)

Blessed is the man who trust in the Lord, *
whose trust is the Lord.

He is like a tree planted by water, *
that sends out its roots by the stream,
and does not fear when heat comes, *
for its leaves remain green,
and is not anxious in the year of drought, *
for it does not cease to bear fruit.

Canticle II

Sir 14:20, 15:3-5a, 6b

The happiness of the wise

Wisdom has been proved right by all her children (Lk 7:35)

Happy the man who meditates on wisdom, *
and reasons with good sense.
She will give him the bread of understanding to eat, *
and the water of wisdom to drink.

He will lean on her and will not fall, *
he will rely on her and not be put to shame.
She will raise him high above his neighbors, *
and he will inherit an everlasting name.

Canticle III

Sir 51:1-3b, 4a, 7c, 11, 14ab, 15

Thanksgiving for delivery from affliction

God has saved us from the hands of our foes, that we might serve him (Lk 1:74)

I will give thanks to you, Lord and King, *
and praise you, God my Savior,
I give thanks to your name; *
for you have been protector and support to me,
and redeemed my body from destruction.
from the snare of the lying tongue, *
from lips that fabricate falsehood.
You have redeemed me, 
true to the greatness of your mercy, *
from the perjured tongue slandering me to the king.

Then I remembered your mercy, Lord, *
and your deeds from earliest times.
I called on the Lord, the father of my Lord: *
“Do not desert me in the days of  ordeal,
I will praise your name unceasingly,
and gratefully sing its praises;” *
and my plea was heard.

Ant. Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is passing by.

Gospel

Mt 17:1-8

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew

Moses and Elijah appeared to them

Jesus took with him Peter and James and his brother John and led them up a high mountain where they could be alone. There in their presence he was transfigured: his face shone like the sun and his clothes became as white as the light. Suddenly Moses and Elijah appeared to them; they were talking with him. Then Peter spoke to Jesus. “Lord,” he said, “it is wonderful for us to be here; if you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” He was still speaking when suddenly a bright cloud covered them with shadow, and from the cloud there came a voice which said, “This is my Son, the Beloved; he enjoys my favor. Listen to him.” When they heard this, the disciples fell on their faces, overcome with fear. But Jesus came up and touched them. “Stand up,” he said, “do not be afraid.” And when they raised their eyes they saw no one but only Jesus.

Te Deum

You are God: we praise you; *
You are the Lord: we acclaim you;
You are the eternal Father: *
All creation worships you.

To you all angels, all the powers of heaven, *
Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise:
Holy, holy, holy, Lord, God of power and might, *
heaven and earth are full of your glory.

The glorious company of apostles praise you. 
The noble fellowship of prophets praise you. *
The white-robed army of martyrs praise you.

Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you: *
Father, of majesty unbounded,
your true and only Son, worthy of all worship, *
and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.

You, Christ, are the King of glory, *
the eternal Son of the Father.

When you became man to set us free *
you did not spurn the Virgin’s womb.

You overcame the sting of death, *
and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.

You are seated at God’s right hand in glory. *
We believe that you will come, and be our judge.

Come then, Lord, and help your people, *
bought with the price of your own blood,
and bring us with your saints*
to glory everlasting.

Save your people, Lord, and bless your inheritance.
 Govern and uphold them now and always.

Day by day we bless you.
 We praise your name for ever.

Keep us today, Lord, from all sin.
 Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy.

Lord, show us your love and mercy,
 for we have put our trust in you.

In you, Lord, is our hope:
 And we shall never hope in vain.

Prayer

Almighty, ever living God,
your prophet Elijah, our Father,
lived always in your presence
and was zealous for the honor due to your name.
May we, your servants,
always seek your face
and bear witness to your love.

We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

watering can border medium

Morning Prayer

Hymn

Come, blest companions, let our joy resounding
Extol to Heaven the Leader of our line.
‘Tis meet the memory of his deeds abounding
Should waken ceaseless canticles divine.

He knows the gentle breathing of the Spirit
Clothed in the whistling murmur of the air,
By God’s command the chastisements they merit
Proud Jezebel and Ahab justly share.

The caverns green of Carmel form his dwelling,
With leathern tunic is he rudely clad,
To impious Ahaziah his foretelling
Gives portent of a dissolution sad.

Twice at his prayer the fire from Heaven descending
Consumeth trembling soldiers in its flame,
The flowing waters mit with his mantle rending,
Dry shod he passeth safely through the same.

O Father, let thy help and thy protection
Be o’er thy children as they humbly plead,
Entreat the Spirit, by His sweet election,
To multiply His graces in their need.

O unbegotten Father, we adore Thee,
O Son begotten, reverence be to Thee,
O glorious Spirit, bow we low before Thee,
Thou simple undivided Trinity.

11.11.11.10.
Pergamus, socii, tollere canticus

Psalmody

Ant. 1 God lives; I am standing in his presence.

Psalm 63

O God, you are my God, for you I long; *
for you my soul is thirsting.
My body pines for you*
like a dry, weary land without water.
So I gaze on you in the sanctuary *
to see your strength and your glory.

For your love is better than life, *
my lips will speak your praise.
So I will bless you all my life, *
in your name I will lift up my hands.
My soul shall be filled as with a banquet, *
my mouth shall praise you with joy.

On my bed I remember you. *
On you I muse through the night
for you have been my help; *
in the shadow of your wings I rejoice.
My soul clings to you; *
your right hand holds me fast.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. God lives; I am standing in his presence.

Ant. 2 Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord; for the Lord is passing by.

Canticle – Daniel 3:57-88, 56

Bless the Lord, all you works of the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Angels of the Lord, bless the Lord. *
You heavens, bless the Lord,
All you waters above the heavens, bless the Lord. *
All you hosts of the Lord, bless the Lord.
Sun and moon, bless the Lord. *
Stars of heaven, bless the Lord.

Every shower and dew, bless the Lord. *
All you winds, bless the Lord.
Fire and heat, bless the Lord. *
Cold and chill, bless the Lord.
Dew and rain, bless the Lord. *
Frost and chill, bless the Lord.
Ice and snow, bless the Lord. *
Nights and days, bless the Lord.
Light and darkness, bless the Lord. *
Lightnings and clouds, bless the Lord.

Let the earth bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Mountains and hills, bless the Lord. *
Everything growing from the earth, bless the Lord.
You springs, bless the Lord. *
Seas and rivers, bless the Lord.
You dolphins and all water creatures, bless the Lord. *
All you birds of the air, bless the Lord.
All you beasts, wild and tame, bless the Lord. *
You sons of men, bless the Lord.

O Israel, bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Priests of the Lord, bless the Lord. *
Servants of the Lord, bless the Lord.
Spirits and souls of the just, bless the Lord. *
Holy men of humble heart, bless the Lord.
Hananiah, Azariah, Mishael, bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.

Let us bless the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. *
Let us praise and exalt him above all for ever.
Blessed are you, Lord, in the firmament of heaven. *
Praiseworthy and glorious and exalted above all for ever.

Ant. Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord; for the Lord is passing by.

Ant. 3 With zeal have I been zealous for the Lord God of hosts.

Psalm 149

Sing a new song to the Lord, *
his praise in the assembly of the faithful.
Let Israel rejoice in its maker, *
let Zion’s sons exult in their king.
Let them praise his name with dancing *
and make music with timbrel and harp.

For the Lord takes delight in his people. *
He crowns the poor with salvation.
Let the faithful rejoice in their glory, *
shout for joy and take their rest.
Let the praise of God be on their lips *
and a two-edged sword in their hand,

to deal out vengeance to the nations *
and punishment on all the peoples;
to bind their kings in chains *
and their nobles in fetters of iron;
to carry out the sentence pre-ordained; *
this honor is for all his faithful.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. With zeal have I been zealous for the Lord God of hosts.

Scripture Reading

2 Pt 1:19-21

We have confirmation of what was said in prophecies; and you will be right to depend on prophecy and take it as a lamp for lighting a way through the dark until the dawn comes and the morning star rises in your minds. At the same time, we must be careful to remember that the interpretation of scriptural prophecy is never a matter for the individual. Why? Because no prophecy ever came from man’s initiative. When men spoke for God it was the Holy Spirit that moved them.

Short Responsory

R/. I will be satisfied, Lord, * when your glory appears. Repeat R/.
V/. And in righteousness I will see your face, * when your glory appears.
Glory . . . R/.

Canticle of Zechariah

Ant. Lord God of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, give proof this day that you are the God of Israel, and that I am your servant, and that all I have said is at your command.

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; *
he has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty savior, *
born of the house of his servant David.

Through his holy prophets he promised of old
that he would save us from our enemies, *
from the hands of all who hate us.

He promised to show mercy to our fathers*
and to remember his holy covenant.

This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham: *
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear, *
holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life.

You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High; *
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
to give his people knowledge of salvation *
by the forgiveness of their sins.

In the tender compassion of our God *
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, *
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Lord God of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, give proof this day that you are the God of Israel, and that I am your servant, and that all I have said is at your command.

Intercessions

God our Father spoke in former days through the prophets, but today he speaks to us in his Son, through whom he wishes the whole world to be joined to him. Let us humbly pray:

R/. Lord, draw us to yourself.

Lord, you revealed yourself to the prophet Elijah in silence and solitude; help us to put aside all that prevents us from hearing your voice, so that we may seek and find you. R/.

When he was thirsty, you gave Elijah refreshing water at the torrent of Karith; may we drink at the living springs of love and contemplation. R/.

As he walked to Mount Horeb, you filled Elijah with strength; may we who are strengthened by the Body and Blood of Christ press on unwearied in our journey to you. R/.

Lord, you revealed yourself to Elijah in the whisper of a gentle breeze; in attentive silence and with an obedient spirit may we receive every inspiration of the Holy Spirit. R/.

Lord, you raised up Elijah like a fire and made him zealous for your glory; may we too burn with the fire of your love, to serve the Church and our brethren in all our work. R/.

Our Father …

Prayer

Almighty, ever living God,
your prophet Elijah, our Father,
lived always in your presence
and was zealous for the honor due to your name.
May we, your servants,
always seek your face
and bear witness to your love.

We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Blazon - first emblem authorized by Gracian

Prayer during the Day

Antiphons and psalms of the weekday.

Before Noon

Ant. Elijah called out to the Lord, and the Lord heard his voice.

Scripture Reading

Heb 12:1-2

Since we for our part are surrounded by this cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every encumbrance of sin which clings to us and persevere in running the race which lies ahead; let us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, who inspires and perfects our faith. For the sake of the joy which lay before him he endured the cross, heedless of its shame. He has taken his seat at the right of the throne of God.

V/. Lord, I have sought your face.
R/. Your face I will seek always.

Midday

Ant. The words of the Lord were fulfilled; he did what he had promised his prophet Elijah.

Scripture Reading

Heb 4:12

God’s word is living and effective, sharper than any two-edged sword. It penetrates and divides soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the reflections and thoughts of the heart.

V/. I have hidden your sayings in my heart, Lord.
R/. So as never to sin against you.

Afternoon

Ant. The fire of the Lord fell and consumed Elijah’s offering.

Scripture Reading

Heb 12:28-29

We who are receiving the unshakable kingdom should hold fast to God’s grace, through which we may offer worship acceptable to him in reverence and awe. For our God is a consuming fire.

V/. Lord, your word is a consuming flame.
R/. Your servant loves it.

Prayer

Almighty, ever living God,
your prophet Elijah, our Father,
lived always in your presence
and was zealous for the honor due to your name.
May we, your servants,
always seek your face
and bear witness to your love.

We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Blazon Ocarm antique

Evening Prayer

Hymn

Praises to the great Elijah!
Let our songs to heaven rise.
His the grace to hear God’s whisper
Where all earthly music dies.

Clad in skins he made his dwelling
On Mount Carmel, finding there
That austere and lonely wisdom
Hidden in a life of prayer.

Yet he went forth at God’s bidding,
Flashed God’s word and law abroad
Till the idols fell around him
And his people turned to God.

May we, too, make war on falsehood,
Burn with zeal for God’s command
Till we follow our true Master
In whose sight we always stand.

Now we pray our Prophet-father
That our lives obtain this grace:
An outpouring God’s Spirit
Over every time and place.

Praise and honor to the Father,
To the Son and Spirit praise.
Theirs be all our love and worship
Now and through eternal days.

87.87.
Text: Unknown

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Now I know that you are a man of God, and that the word of God in your mouth is true.

Psalm 15

Lord, who shall be admitted to your tent *
and dwell on your holy mountain?

He who walks without fault; *
he who acts with justice
and speaks the truth from his heart; *
he who does not slander with his tongue;

he who does no wrong to his brother, *
who casts no slur on his neighbor,
who holds the godless in disdain, *
but honors those who fear the Lord;

he who keeps his pledge, come what may; *
who takes no interest on a loan
and accepts no bribes against the innocent. *
Such a man will stand firm for ever.

Ant. Now I know that you are a man of God, and that the word of God in your mouth is true.

Ant. 2 The Lord said to Elijah: Go and present yourself to Ahab; I will send rain upon the earth.

Psalm 112

Happy the man who fears the Lord, *
who takes delight in all his commands.
His sons will be powerful on earth; *
the children of the upright are blessed.

Riches and wealth are in his house; *
his justice stands firm for ever.
He is a light in the darkness for the upright: *
he is generous, merciful and just.

The good man takes pity and lends, *
he conducts his affairs with honor.
The just man will never waver: *
he will be remembered for ever.

He has no fear of evil news; *
with a firm heart he trusts in the Lord.
With a steadfast heart he will not fear; *
he will see the downfall of his foes.

Open-handed, he gives to the poor; †
his justice stands firm for ever. *
His head will be raised in glory.

The wicked man sees and is angry, †
grinds his teeth and fades away;
the desire of the wicked leads to doom.

Ant. The Lord said to Elijah: Go and present yourself to Ahab; I will send rain upon the earth.

Ant. 3 Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind, and Elisha saw him no more.

Canticle: Rev 15:3-4

Great and wonderful are your deeds, *
O Lord God the Almighty!
Just and true are your ways, *
O King of the ages!

Who shall not fear and glorify your name, O Lord? *
For you alone are holy.
All nations shall come and worship you, *
for your judgments have been revealed.

Ant. Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind, and Elisha saw him no more.

Scripture Reading

2 Kgs 2:11-12

As they still went on and talked, behold, a chariot of fire and horses of fire separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. And Elisha saw it, and he cried, ‘My father, my father! the chariot of Israel and its horseman!’ And he saw him no more.

Short Responsory

R/. Elisha lifted the cloak of Elijah: * he struck the waters and they divided. Repeat R/.
V/. Because the spirit of Elijah rested on Elisha: * he struck the waters and they divided.
Glory . . . R/.

Canticle of Mary

Ant. Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the day of the Lord comes, that great and terrible day. He will turn the hearts of fathers to their sons and the hearts of sons to their fathers.

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, *
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant, *
and from this day all generations will call me blessed.

The Almighty has done great things for me: *
holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him *
in every generation.

He has shown the strength of his arm, *
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,*
and has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with good things, *
and has sent the rich away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel*
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the day of the Lord comes, that great and terrible day. He will turn the hearts of fathers to their sons and the hearts of sons to their fathers.

Intercessions

Let us give joyful praise to the living and true God, who chose the prophet Elijah to proclaim his power and mercy; let us say to him:

R/. Lord, make us witnesses of your love.

Lord, you accepted the sacrifice of Elijah and consumed it with fire from heaven; accept our evening sacrifice which we offer for the good of the Church. R/.

When Elijah prayed on the mountain you sent saving rain from heaven; fill us who have been called to Carmel with a spirit of prayer, so that we may draw a shower of grace to the world. R/.

You gave to the prophet Elijah the ministry of reconciling parents and children; make us workers for peace, so that the peace of Christ may reign in the world. R/.

You made Elijah the defender of your honor and of true worship; increase our concern for justice, so that by giving you all that is your due, we may serve our brothers and sisters in the spirit of the Gospel. R/.

You took the prophet Elijah to yourself in a whirlwind of fire; graciously admit our departed brothers and sisters into the embrace of your glory. R/.

Our Father …

Prayer

Almighty, ever living God,
your prophet Elijah, our Father,
lived always in your presence
and was zealous for the honor due to your name.
May we, your servants,
always seek your face
and bear witness to your love.

We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Translation of Elijah_Epic Poem_BritLibrary
Image taken from page 8 of ‘[Elijah the Prophet. An epic poem.]’; courtesy British Library
To discover more illustrations from the public domain digital image collection of the British Library, visit their Flickr account, which contains more than one million photos available for download.
Featured image: Elijah Taken Up in a Chariot of Fire, Giuseppe Angeli  (c. 1740/1755)

 

Quote of the day: 19 July

We must continually apply ourselves so that all our actions, without exception, become a kind of brief conversation with God, not in a contrived manner but coming from the simplicity and purity of our hearts.

Brother Lawrence of the Resurrection, O.C.D.
Spiritual Maxims

 

Caille, Leon Emile, 1836-1907; Prayer
Prayer
Léon Émile Caille (French, 1836–1907)
Oil on panel, 1872
Manchester Art Gallery, England
This is a traditional domestic scene of a mother and daughter sitting together in a kitchen. The mother is seated at a stove with a bowl placed in her lap; she has a red-patterned shawl and plain apron around her; the child is dressed in a pinafore and kneels beside her mother, leaning on her lap in a position of prayer. The mother looks down towards her child. There is a bronze kettle at their feet and cooking equipment everywhere in the surrounding stone kitchen.

 

Brother Lawrence of the Resurrection. Writings and Conversations on the Practice of the Presence of God.
(Spiritual Maxims, p. 38; Chapter 2)
Copyright © 1994, 2015 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc.
Published by ICS Publications, Washington DC

Quote of the day: 18 July

Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity
Letter 300 to her mother

[ July 18, 1906]

J. M. + J. T.

Darling little Mama,

I’m expecting you on Saturday at the time we arranged; I will go to receive you on foot, without a cane. I’m delighted about it! I was expecting you today, and here I see my Master wants to unite mother and child in suffering, since your dear health is the reason for the delay of your visit; I love you too much to be sad about it, for I understand better than ever how much God loves us when He tries us. What a relief for me to think of you looked after by our dear Guite; let yourself be cared for by her, obey her completely, won’t you, little Mama.

The Blessed Virgin has not performed the miracle you desired. When, as you tell me in your dear, kind letter, you’re afraid that I might be a victim marked out for suffering, I beg you not to be sad about it, that would be so beautiful; I don’t feel worthy of it; think now, to have a share in the sufferings of my crucified Bridegroom, and to go with Him to my passion to be a redemptrix with Him. . . . Saint Paul says that those whom God foreknew, He predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son.  Rejoice in your mother’s heart when you think that God has predestined me and has marked me with the seal of the Cross of His Christ.

My legs, however, are getting better; I can walk without a cane. I’ve been given a very light robe, and this is what I wear when I make my little comings and goings, which consist in going out on the terrace and to the little tribune [small second-story prayer chapel overlooking the tabernacle]; can you imagine what a joy this is for my soul? Several times a day I make long visits to my Master, and I thank Him for having given me the use of my legs to go to Him. I am reading your dear book,  which is magnificent; you’ve made me a very precious gift, my dear Mama; I have it beside me on the little table that is so useful to me.  If you knew how well set up I am. . . . I think up something new every day, and my dear Mother smiles at my “comforts.” How she cares for me and anticipates my every need; I had told her I had a bad taste in my mouth and she got some new candy for me to bring me more relief, and it’s like that with everything; she has the intuitions of a mother. If you knew how she loves you; it was she who told me to write you right away, and I didn’t have to be begged, as you can imagine. We’ve had a very beautiful feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel,  I’ll tell you all about it on Saturday. I’m giving you all my best wishes for my Guite; tell little Sabeth to give her this holy card and to kiss her for Tata. A Dieu, darling Mama, I gather all of you together to kiss you as I love you. Be very reasonable, listen well to your Guite to please me. Your daughter who loves you more than she can say.

M.E. of the Trinity r.c.i.
26 years old today.


This would be the last birthday letter that Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity would write to her dear mother, Madame Catez. Less than four months later, she would die of acute adrenal failure, directly attributable to her years-long battle with Addison’s Disease.

 

bl-e-of-t-very-ill-near-death
One of the last photos taken of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity | Photo: Discalced Carmelites

 

Letter 300 to her mother, on 18 July 1906 The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (p. 309-310)
ICS Publications, Washington DC © Washington Province of Discalced Carmelites, Inc.

 

Quote of the day: 17 July

Sister Constance

 

Sister Constance—baptized Marie-Jeanne Meunier—was born in St-Denis, near Paris, on May 28, 1766. She entered our community on May 29, 1788, and took the habit on the following 13th of December.

But the unhappy decree of the Constituent Assembly, which proscribed the profession of vows—of which the Reverend Mother Prioress had been notified—deprived our dear Sister Constance of the happiness of professing her own.

To this trial was added still another that was even more cruel to her heart. Her parents from whom she had (so to speak) extracted their consent to enter the monastery, having learned of the fatal decree [that proscribed the profession of vows], resolved to make her come home. Armed with their authorization, one of her brothers presented himself with the intention to use force if she refused to leave of her own goodwill. But because his attempts were unsuccessful, a police raid took place.

The young novice, without being disturbed by this sudden and threatening appearance, replied to the summons which was issued for her to leave in the name of the law:

Gentlemen, I have entered here only with the consent of my parents. If they only want to get me to leave here because their tenderness is alarmed at the dangers that I can run into while staying there, I thank them for it; but nothing but death will be able to separate me from the company of my Sisters. And you, my brotherwhom I am most likely to see for the last timetestify to our dear parents that indifference does not enter into my refusal to yield to their desires, that it hurts my heart to give them cause for chagrin; but I also think that they cannot find fault in the fact that I am following the movement of my conscience. That is all I demand of this liberty whose benefits everyone proclaims to high heaven.

The commissioner, the King’s attorney, and the others did not go farther; they left, admiring the courage of the novice who fulfilled so well, in her sentiments and her language, the meaning of the religious name that had been given to her when she was admitted to the number of the daughters of St. Teresa. She had the glory of dying as a Christian heroine, like her companions, at only 28 years old.

Sister Marie of the Incarnation, O.C.D.

(Françoise-Geneviève Philippe)


What was this fatal decree?

Sr. Marie of the Incarnation tells us that Blessed Constance entered the Carmel of Compiègne on the 29th of May 1788 and was clothed in the habit of Carmel on December 13th.

Canonically, she should have professed her perpetual vows in the following December, 1789. Historian William Bush in his well-known book, To Quell the Terror, tells us that the prioress intended to permit Sr. Constance to profess her vows on the anniversary date in the following year.

 

Prise_de_la_Bastille Jean-Pierre Houël — Bibliothèque nationale de France
“La prise de la Bastille”, Jean-Pierre Houël (1789)—At the center, you can see the arrest of the commander of the Bastille, Bernard René Jourdan, marquis de Launay (1740-1789) | Bibliothèque nationale de France/Wikimedia Commons

 

The tumultuous events of 1789 changed everything. On Tuesday 14 July, revolutionary insurgents stormed the royal fortress in Paris called the Bastille. Their siege was successful; they captured the fortress, arrested the commander and turned the tide of revolutionary fervor in Paris toward the revolutionary insurgents and away from the crumbling royal administration. From Paris, soon the entire nation was ablaze with revolutionary fervor.

Meanwhile, in the Constituent Assembly—a governing body created in June 1789—deputies were emboldened by the actions of the insurgents. Thanks to the joint efforts of the French national library and Stanford University we can read the daily acts of the Constituent Assembly and learn exactly who and what created the fatal decree of 28 October 1789.

Mr. Rousselet gives an account, in the name of the committee on reports, of letters written by two male religious and one religious sister asking that the Assembly explain what it means concerning the profession of vows; he proposes to forbid the perpetual monastic vows.

Michel Louis Rousselet was a deputy from the bailiwick of Provins (Seine-et-Marne) southeast of Paris. He served only two years in the Assembly (30 Mar 1789 – 30 Sep 1791), but for the Catholics of France they were crucial. His report received the backing of Guy Jean-Baptiste Target from the bailiwick of Paris-Outside-the-Walls.

Mr. Target requests a postponement on the substance and presents the following decree:

Yes, the report …. the Assembly postpones the question concerning the profession of vows and however, as a provision, decrees that the profession of vows will be suspended in monasteries of either sex.

Several clergymen who were Deputies explained that the temporary suspension cast judgment on the matter; they demanded the implementation of the rule that required three days of discussion for important matters. Tragically, their pleas were ignored. The record of the Assembly states:

The decree proposed by Mr. Target is adopted.

 

Assemblée Nationale 28 Octobre 1789 decree NO VOWS
French Revolution Digital Archive
A collaboration of the Stanford University Libraries and the Bibliothèque nationale de France
Tome 9 : Du 16 septembre au 11 novembre 1789 » Séance du mercredi 28 octobre 1789 » Séance du jeudi 29 octobre 1789 » page 597

Michel, Louis Rousselet
1746 – 1834
Guy, Jean-Baptiste Target
1733 – 1806

Sanctions against the Catholic Church in France swiftly followed as the nascent revolutionary government, strapped for cash, expropriated all of the assets of the Catholic Church and her patrimony. To this very day, the Church in France is poor, reliant upon the government to care for her buildings like the great Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris.

 

NotreDameCathedral_afterthefire_26jun19
Notre-Dame de Paris, 26 Jun 2019 | Eve Martin/Flickr

 


Sr. Constance, the native of Saint-Denis, did not return home with her brother after the commissioner, the King’s attorney, and the others left the monastery. She remained in ‘the company of her Sisters’ all the way to scaffold. She fulfilled the life of a Discalced Carmelite nun, but always remained a novice and canonically never was permitted to participate in any important decisions of the monastic chapter that required a voice vote.

It was only at the foot of the scaffold, six years after entering the Carmel of Compiègne that she finally professed her perpetual vows as a Discalced Carmelite nun. Her heart filled with overwhelming joy, she climbed the steps of the scaffold as she emphatically exercised her voice, becoming a foundress—the protomartyr—of the Carmel of Compiègne transferred to the heavenly courts.

What words were on the lips and in the heart of Blessed Constance in those ultimate moments on earth? She intoned Psalm 117, the psalm that Saint Teresa of Avila and Venerable Anne of Jesus chanted as they inaugurated each and every new foundation:

 

O praise the Lord, all you nations,
acclaim him all you peoples!

Strong is his love for us;
he is faithful for ever.

 

 

Concerning the Blessed Constance’s chant, Professor Bush explains:
As their final song at the scaffold— for there were several— it was Psalm 117, Laudate Dominum omnes gentes, which proclaims the mystic truth couched at the heart of the Christian experience of salvation: God’s mercy is at the center of all things, even of being guillotined.

Bush, William. To Quell the Terror: The Mystery of the Vocation of the Sixteen Carmelites of Compiègne Guillotined July 17, 1774 (pp. 14-15). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.
sœur Marie de l'Incarnation. Histoire des religieuses carmelites de Compiègne conduites a l'échafaud le 17 juillet 1794: Ouvrage posthume de la soeur Marie de l'Incarnation. January 1, 1836. (pp. 108-110) T. Malvin. Google Play Books edition. This English translation is the blogger’s own work product and may not be reproduced without permission.

 

Haifa and the beauty of Carmel

We thank the Christian Media Center, the communications ministry of the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land, for this fine video on the City of Haifa and the citizens that live and work to make Mount Carmel of today a place of beauty and peace.

A touristic, seaside city, which stands out as a technological and academic center, Haifa is a model of peaceful coexistence between religions. Religious, historical and cultural factors explain this good union.

 

“We would like to give a voice” — An open letter from Discalced Carmelite and Poor Clare nuns in Italy

Dear Editor of Avvenire, 

We wish to share with you and all the readers of ‘Avvenire’ the open letter which, inspired by the Gospel of Matthew (Mt 23:8): ‘You are all brothers’, we decided to send to President Mattarella and to Prime Minister Conte on 11 July 2019, on the feast of St Benedict.


Dear President of the Italian Republic, 
Dear Prime Minister, 

We are sisters of Poor Clare and Discalced Carmelite monasteries, united by the sole desire to express concern about the spread in Italy of feelings of intolerance, rejection, and violent discrimination against migrants and refugees who are seeking welcome and protection in our lands. It was not possible for us to contact all Italian monastic houses, but we know that we are in communion with those who share our concerns and our own desire for a more humane society. 

With this open letter we would like to give a voice to our migrant brothers and sisters who flee from wars, persecution, and famines, those who face endless and inhumane journeys, suffer humiliation and violence of every kind that no one can possibly deny. The stories of survivors and rescuers, the statistics of international institutions who observe migration, and reports from journalists all clearly demonstrate the increasingly dramatic situation we face. 

We repeat the appeal contained in the Document on Human Fraternity signed by Pope Francis and by the Imam of al-Azhar Ahmed al-Tayyeb calling upon ‘leaders of the world as well as the architects of international policy and world economy, to work strenuously to spread the culture of tolerance and of living together in peace’. In particular ‘in the name of orphans, widows, refugees, and exiles from their homes and their countries; of all the victims of wars, persecutions, and injustice; of the weak, of those who live in fear, of prisoners of war and those tortured in any part of the world’. We too, therefore, dare to beg you: please protect the lives of migrants! 

Through you, we ask that government institutions guarantee their dignity, care for their integration, and protect them from racism and from a mentality that considers them only as an obstacle to national well-being. Please remember that alongside the many problems and difficulties, there are countless examples of migrants who build friendships, enter the world of work and university, create businesses, engage in trade unions and volunteer work. These riches must not be devalued and we should acknowledge and promote their great potential. 

Our simple life as sisters testifies that staying together is challenging and sometimes tiring, but achievable and always constructive. Only the patient art of mutual acceptance can keep us humane and allow us to accept ourselves as we really are.

We are also deeply convinced that it is not naive to believe that developing a strong relationship with everyone who is called to live in our society, can only enrich our history and, in the long term, also develop our economic and social situation. It is actually naive to believe that a civilization that closes its doors is destined for a long and happy future. A society that among other things closes the ports for migrants, which as Pope Francis pointed out, actually ‘opens the doors to the boats that prefer to load sophisticated and expensive weapons’. What seems to be lacking today in many political decisions is a wise reading of the past made up of peoples who have themselves migrated and a foresight capable of perceiving for tomorrow the consequences of today’s choices. 

Many Italian monasteries, belonging to various orders, are questioning how to contribute tangibly to the reception of refugees, alongside diocesan institutions. Some are already offering space and help. And at the same time, we are trying to listen to their experience to understand their suffering and fear. We wish to place ourselves next to all the poor of our country and, now more than ever, to those who come to Italy and see themselves denied the right of every man and every woman: peace and dignity. Many of us have also intimately experienced their tragedies at first hand.

We wish to support those who dedicate time, energy and heart to the defense of refugees and to the fight against all forms of racism, even by simply declaring their opinion. We thank all those who, because of this, are mocked, hindered, and accused. An article of our Italian Constitution (Art. 21) says that everyone has ‘the right to freely express their thoughts with speech, writing and any other means of communication’.

We wish to dissociate ourselves from every form of the Christian faith that does not translate itself into charity and service.

Finally, in communion with the teaching of Pope Francis, and his call for fraternity and solidarity, we wish to follow our consciences as women; we are daughters of God and the sisters of every woman and man on earth, and we wish to publicly express our concern. 

We thank you for the attention with which you have read our appeal. We thank you, President Mattarella, for your continuous calls for peace and your confidence in the dialogue that allows, as you said when we celebrated ‘Republic Day’ on the 2nd of June 2019, ‘to overcome conflicts and promote mutual interest in the international community’.

We thank you, Prime Minister Conte, for your difficult role as mediator and institutional guarantor within the Government. We sincerely thank you for what you are already doing to support peaceful coexistence and a more welcoming society. We assure you of our prayers for you, for those who work in government institutions, for our country, and for Europe, because together we wish to promote what is good for everyone.

Signed

Discalced Carmelite Nuns: Sassuolo, Crotone, Parma, Cividino, Venice, Savona, Monte S. Quirico, Arezzo, Bologna, Piacenza, Legnano, Nuoro. 

Poor Clares: Lovere, Milan, Fanano, Grottaglie, Padua, Montagnana, Mantua, Urbania, Montone, S. Severino Marche, S. Benedetto del Tronto, Vicoforte, Bra, Sant’Agata Feltria, Roasio, Verona, S. Lucia di Serino, Altamura, Otranto, Capri, Leivi, Alcamo, Bologna, Boves, Sassoferrato, Termini Imerese, Chieti, Pollenza, Osimo, Castelbuono, Porto Viro, Bergamo, Rimini, Manduria, Urbino, Bienno, Scigliano, Sarzana, Caltanissetta, Ferrara, San Marino. 

Capuchin Poor Clares: Fiera di Primiero, Naples, Mercatello sul Metauro, Brescia, Citta di Castello. 

 

Original Italian text: https://www.avvenire.it/opinioni/pagine/lettera-claustrali-preghiamo-per-i-migranti-senza-voce

 

Translated by Christian Kendall-Daw, edited for style by the blogger.

Quote of the day: 15 July

Tomorrow, 16 July will be the Commemoration of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. For several centuries the faithful in their piety have wanted to honor the illustrious Mother of God with various titles and with the most sincere acts of giving. Let us recall that it was Pope John XXII in the fourteenth century who promoted the devotion to Mary under this title: it is precisely this history that we must remember when, each time, the form of prayer and homage becomes clearer and clearer.

Saint John XXIII
Audience, 15 July 1961

 

NDMC_Santa Maria in Traspontina_icon (2)
The miraculous image of Our Lady of Mount Carmel venerated in the Carmelite parish of Santa Maria in Traspontina, the Roman parish that is closest to the Vatican. The canonical coronation of the image occurred on this date in 1641, although the image has been enshrined in the parish since 1484. Saint Philip Neri frequently visited the parish to pray before this image of the Virgin of Carmel; Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli, the future Pope John XXIII, offered his first Mass at this altar. In 1929, Pope Pius XI blessed new crowns, which the Pontiff himself placed on the image of Our Lady and her Divine Son. | Source: Efemérides Carmelitanas | Photo: gbcarmelite / Flickr

 

Per Adversa: Novena 8

The way of suffering and love

1. On another day the Lord told me this: “Do you think, daughter, that merit lies in enjoyment? No, rather it lies in working and suffering and loving. Haven’t you heard that St. Paul rejoiced in heavenly joys only once and that he suffered often. Look at my whole life filled with suffering, and only in the incident on Mount Tabor do you hear about my joy. When you see My Mother holding Me in her arms, don’t think she enjoyed those consolations without heavy torment. From the time Simeon spoke those words to her, My Father gave her clear light to see what I was to suffer. The great saints who lived in deserts, since they were guided by God, performed severe penances; and besides this, they waged great battle with the devil and with themselves. They spent long periods without any spiritual consolation. Believe, daughter, that My Father gives greater trials to anyone whom He loves more; and love responds to these. How can I show you greater love than by desiring for you what I have desired for Myself? Behold these wounds, for your sufferings have never reached this point. Suffering is the way of truth. By this means you will help me weep over the loss of those who follow the way of the world, and you will understand that all your desires, cares, and thoughts must be employed in how to do the opposite.”

2. When I had begun prayer I had such a bad headache I thought it would be almost impossible to pray. The Lord said to me: “In this way, you will see the reward that comes from suffering, for since you did not have the health to speak with Me, I have spoken with you and favored you.” And so it is certain that I must have been recollected about an hour and a half. During that time He spoke the above words to me and all the rest. I was not distracted, but neither did I know where I was; and I was so happy I don’t know how to describe it. My headache went away — which surprised me — and I was left with a great desire for suffering.

It is true, at least I haven’t heard otherwise, that our Lord didn’t have any joy in life other than this once, nor did St. Paul. The Lord also told me I should keep very much in mind the words He spoke to His apostles, that the servant must not be greater than the Lord.

Saint Teresa of Avila
Spiritual Testimonies: 32


1. Esto me dijo el Señor otro día: “¿Piensas, hija, que está el merecer en gozar? No está sino en obrar y en padecer y en amar. No habrás oído que San Pablo estuviese gozando de los gozos celestiales más de una vez, y muchas que padeció, y ves mi vida toda llena de padecer y sólo en el monte Tabor habrás oído mi gozo. No pienses, cuando ves a mi Madre que me tiene en los brazos, que gozaba de aquellos contentos sin grave tormento. Desde que le dijo Simeón aquellas palabras, la dio mi Padre clara luz para que viese lo que Yo había de padecer. Los grandes santos que vivieron en los desiertos, como eran guiados por Dios, así hacían graves penitencias, y sin esto tenían grandes batallas con el demonio y consigo mismos; mucho tiempo se pasaban sin ninguna consolación espiritual. Cree, hija, que a quien mi Padre más ama, da mayores trabajos, y a éstos responde el amor. ¿En qué te le puedo más mostrar que querer para ti lo que quise para Mí? Mira estas llagas, que nunca llegaron aquí tus dolores. Este es el camino de la verdad. Así me ayudarás a llorar la perdición que traen los del mundo, entendiendo tú esto, que todos sus deseos y cuidados y pensamientos se emplean en cómo tener lo contrario”.

2. Cuando empecé a tener oración, estaba con tan gran mal de cabeza, que me parecía casi imposible poderla tener. Díjome el Señor: “Por aquí verás el premio del padecer, que como no estabas tú con salud para hablar conmigo, he Yo hablado contigo y regaládote”. Y es así cierto, que sería como hora y media, poco menos, el tiempo que estuve recogida. En él me dijo las palabras dichas y todo lo demás. Ni yo me divertía, ni sé adónde estaba, y con tan gran contento que no sé decirlo, y quedóme buena la cabeza -que me ha espantado- y harto deseo de padecer.

Es verdad que al menos yo no he oído que el Señor tuviese otro gozo en la vida sino esa vez, ni San Pablo. También me dijo que trajese mucho en la memoria las palabras que el Señor dijo a sus Apóstoles, “que no había de ser más el siervo que el Señor”.

Santa Teresa de Jesús
Las Relaciones: Capítulo 36

 

The crucified Christ appears to Saint Teresa of Avila_Alonso Cano_Museo del Prado
The crucified Christ appears to Saint Teresa of Avila, Alonso Cano, Oil on canvas, 1629, Museo del Prado, Madrid

 

SCRIPTURE
Colossians 1:24-2:5

It makes me happy to suffer for you, as I am suffering now, and in my own body to do what I can to make up all that has still to be undergone by Christ for the sake of his body, the Church. I became the servant of the Church when God made me responsible for delivering God’s message to you, the message which was a mystery hidden for generations and centuries and has now been revealed to his saints. It was God’s purpose to reveal it to them and to show all the rich glory of this mystery to pagans. The mystery is Christ among you, your hope of glory: this is the Christ we proclaim, this is the wisdom in which we thoroughly train everyone and instruct everyone, to make them all perfect in Christ. It is for this I struggle wearily on, helped only by his power driving me irresistibly.

Yes, I want you to know that I do have to struggle hard for you, and for those in Laodicea, and for so many others who have never seen me face to face. It is all to bind you together in love and to stir your minds, so that your understanding may come to full development until you really know God’s secret in which all the jewels of wisdom and knowledge are hidden. I say this to make sure that no one deceives you with specious arguments. I may be absent in body, but in spirit I am there among you, delighted to find you all in harmony and to see how firm your faith in Christ is.

NOVENA PRAYER

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!

 

Novena citations taken from The Collected Works of St. Teresa of Avila Translated by Kieran Kavanaugh, O.C.D. and Otilio Rodriguez, O.C.D. 
ICS Publications Copyright © 1976 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars

16 July: Solemn Commemoration of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

July 16
SOLEMN COMMEMORATION OF OUR LADY OF MOUNT CARMEL

Solemnity

The sacred scriptures speak of the beauty of Mount Carmel where the prophet Elijah defended the faith of Israel in the living God. There, at the beginning of the thirteenth century, under the title of “Saint Mary of Mount Carmel,” the Order of Carmelites had its formal beginning. From the fourteenth century this title, recalling the countless blessings of its patroness, began to be celebrated solemnly, first in England and then gradually throughout the whole Order. It attained its supreme place from the beginning of the seventeenth century, when the General Chapter declared it to be the principal feast of the Order, and Paul V recognized it as the feast of the Scapular Confraternity.

Evening Prayer I

Hymn

Flower of Carmel,
Tall vine blossom laden;
Splendor of heaven,
Child-bearing yet maiden.
None equals thee.

Mother so tender,
Who no man didst know,
On Carmel’s children
Thy favors bestow.
Star of the Sea.

Strong stem of Jesse,
Who bore one bright flower,
Be ever near us
And guard us each hour,
who serve thee here.

Purest of lilies,
That flowers among thorns,
Bring help to the true heart
That in weakness turns
and trusts in thee.

Strongest of armor,
We trust in thy might:
Under thy mantle,
Hard press’d in the fight,
we call to thee.

Our way uncertain,
Surrounded by foes,
Unfailing counsel
You give to those
who turn to thee.

O gentle Mother
Who in Carmel reigns,
Share with your servants
That gladness you gained
and now enjoy.

Hail, Gate of Heaven,
With glory now crowned,
Bring us to safety
Where thy Son is found,
true joy to see.

Flos Carmeli
Tr. unknown

Psalmody

Ant. 1 The glory of Lebanon is given to her, the beauty of Carmel and Sharon.

Psalm 113

Praise, O servants of the Lord, *
praise the name of the Lord!
May the name of the Lord be blessed *
both now and for evermore!
From the rising of the sun to its setting *
praised be the name of the Lord!

High above all nations is the Lord, *
above the heavens his glory.
Who is like the Lord, our God, *
who has risen on high to his throne *
yet stoops from the heights to look down, *
to look down upon heaven and earth?

From the dust he lifts up the lowly, *
from his misery he raises the poor
to set him in the company of princes, *
yes, with the princes of his people.
To the childless wife he gives a home *
and gladdens her heart with children.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. The glory of Lebanon is given to her, the beauty of Carmel and Sharon.

Ant. 2 You are the glory of Jerusalem, the joy of Israel, the highest honor of our race.

Psalm 147

O praise the Lord, Jerusalem! *
Sion, praise your God!

He has strengthened the bars of your gates, *
he has blessed the children within you.
He has established peace on your borders, *
he feeds you with finest wheat.

He sends out his word to the earth *
and swiftly runs his command.
He showers down snow white as wool, *
he scatters hoarfrost like ashes.

He hurls down hailstones like crumbs. *
The waters are frozen at his touch;
he sends forth his word and it melts them: *
at the breath of his mouth the waters flow.

He makes his word known to Jacob, *
to Israel his laws and decrees.
He has not dealt thus with other nations; *
he has not taught them his decrees.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. You are the glory of Jerusalem, the joy of Israel, the highest honor of our race.

Ant. 3 You will rejoice in your children, for they will be blessed through you and gathered together by the Lord.

Canticle: Eph 1:3-10

Blessed be the God and Father *
of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us in Christ *
with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.

He chose us in him *
before the foundation of the world,
that we should be holy *
and blameless before him.

He destined us in love *
to be his sons through Jesus Christ,
according to the purpose of his will, †
to the praise of his glorious grace *
which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.

In him we have redemption through his Blood, *
the forgiveness of our trespasses,
according to the riches of his grace *
which he lavished upon us.

He has made known to us †
in all wisdom and insight *
the mystery of his will,
according to his purpose *
which he set forth in Christ.

His purpose he set forth in Christ, *
as a plan for the fullness of time,
to unite all things in him, *
things in heaven and things on earth.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. You will rejoice in your children, for they will be blessed through you and gathered together by the Lord.

Scripture Reading

Rev 11:19; 12:1

God’s temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen within his temple. And a great portent appeared in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.

Short Responsory

R/. How fair you are, * O Virgin Mary. Repeat R/.
V/. Your face is resplendent with grace, * O Virgin Mary.
Glory . . . R/.

Canticle of Mary

Ant. Bounteous Mother of God, glory of Mount Carmel, we are your children and your people, endow us with your own virtues; have pity, and protect us from every danger.

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, *
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant, *
and from this day all generations will call me blessed.

The Almighty has done great things for me: *
holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him *
in every generation.

He has shown the strength of his arm, *
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,*
and has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with good things, *
and has sent the rich away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel*
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Bounteous Mother of God, glory of Mount Carmel, we are your children and your people, endow us with your own virtues; have pity, and protect us from every danger.

Intercessions

Let us praise our heavenly Father, who gives us the joy of celebrating this solemn feast of the Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel, as we pray:

R/. May Mary, Mother and Beauty of Carmel, intercede for us.

Lord, in your plan the Daughter of Sion was foreshadowed by the prophets and made the heir of all your promises; by imitating Mary, who is the image of the Church, may your Church on earth be more and more the sacrament of the world’s salvation. R/.

You have honored the family of Carmel with the title and patronage of the Virgin Mary; may all Carmelites live with her in unswerving allegiance to Jesus Christ. R/.

You have entrusted the whole of mankind, the brothers and sisters of your Son, to the care of Mary’s maternal heart; may the world see her image in us as we strive to live in your presence and to give ourselves for the salvation of all. R/.

You call the humble family of Carmel, living in the cloister and in the world, to be especially dedicated to the Virgin Mary; may all who are called to Carmel be of one mind and one heart as they join together in prayer with Mary, the Mother of Jesus. R/.

You promise a crown of glory to those who persevere in your love till the end; may our departed brothers and sisters, who shared Mary’s love for you, rejoice with you forever in heaven. R/.

Our Father …

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Or:

Father,
may the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother and Queen of Carmel,
protect us, and bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God for ever and ever.

Angel_British Library_small

INVITATORY

Lord, open my lips.
 And my mouth will proclaim your praise.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Psalm 95

Come, let us sing to the Lord *
and shout with joy to the Rock who saves us.
Let us approach him with praise and thanksgiving *
and sing joyful songs to the Lord.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

The Lord is God, the mighty God, *
the great king over all the gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth *
and the highest mountains as well
He made the sea; it belongs to him, *
the dry land, too, for it was formed by his hands.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Come, then, let us bow down and worship, *
bending the knee before the Lord, our maker,
For he is our God and we are his people, *
the flock he shepherds.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Today, listen to the voice of the Lord:*
Do not grow stubborn, as your fathers did in the wilderness,
when at Meriba and Massah they challenged me and provoked me, *
Although they had seen all of my works.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Forty years I endured that generation. 
I said, “They are a people whose hearts go astray *
and they do not know my ways.”
So I swore in my anger, *
“They shall not enter into my rest.”

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Office of Readings

Hymn

1. Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel whom in ancient prophecy
God revealed to Saint Elijah by an Oriental sea.
Rise again on God’s creation bring to bloom this arid place
with the white cloud of your beauty and the rainfall of your grace.

2. Blessed cloud of God’s protection and His luminous abode,
light the pathways of your pilgrims to the promised land of God.
On the mount of contemplation be our surety and stay.
In the night a pillar glowing and a cloud of love by day.

3. Mother fair above all mothers, by the scapular we wear
be your own sign of salvation, which our willing shoulders bear.
Shield us from the foes of darkness, we are prey they seek to win.
us as your loving children from the tragedy of sin.

4. Virgin of the Incarnation, in the mysteries of grace,
God has made His habitation in our soul’s most secret place.
Toward that bright and inner kingdom, all our words and ways compel.
For the Father, Son and Spirit in its sacred silence dwell.

5. Lady of the mystic mountain, where the Lord has set His throne,
up its steep way to the Spirit, none can walk save love alone.
Grant us grace to climb Mount Carmel and to learn that love is loss.
Guide us still our ways outdistance all earth’s treasures save the cross.

6. Queen and Beauty of Mount Carmel, Virgin of the solitude,
in the wilderness of Carmel lies the world’s eternal good.
Draw us to its deep seclusion and make God alone our goal.
In the mystical Mount Carmel that lies hidden in the soul.

87.87.D.
Sr. Miriam of the Holy Spirit, OCD

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord, and who shall stand in his holy place? The one with clean hands and pure heart.

When the following psalm has been used at the Invitatory, Ps 94 is said here in place of it.

Psalm 24

The Lord’s is the earth and its fullness, *
the world and all its peoples.
It is he who set in on the seas; *
on the waters he made it firm.

Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord? *
Who shall stand in his holy place?
The man with clean hands and pure heart, †
who desires not worthless things, *
who has not sworn so as to deceive his neighbor.

He shall receive blessings from the Lord *
and reward from the God who saves him.
Such are the men who seek him, *
seek the face of the God of Jacob.

O gates, lift high your heads; †
grow higher, ancient doors. *
Let him enter, the king of glory!

Who is the king of glory? †
The Lord, the mighty, the valiant, *
the Lord, the valiant in war.

O gates, lift high your heads; †
grow higher, ancient doors. *
Let him enter, the king of glory!

Who is he, the king of glory? †
He, the Lord of armies, *
he is the king of glory.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord, and who shall stand in his holy place? The one with clean hands and pure heart.

Ant. 2 I will lead them to my holy mountain and make them joyful in my house of prayer.

Psalm 46

God is for us a refuge and strength *
a helper close at hand, in time of distress:
so we shall not fear though the earth should rock, *
though the mountains fall into the depths of the sea,
even though its waters rage and foam, *
even though the mountains be shaken by its waves.

The Lord of hosts is with us: *
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

The waters of a river give joy to God’s city, *
the holy place where the Most High dwells.
God is within, it cannot be shaken; *
God will help it at the dawning of the day.
Nations are in tumult, kingdoms are shaken: *
he lifts his voice, the earth shrinks away.

The Lord of hosts is with us: *
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

Come, consider the works of the Lord *
the redoubtable deeds he has done on the earth.
He puts an end to wars over all the earth; †
the bow he breaks, the spear he snaps. *
He burns the shields with fire.
“Be still and know that I am God, *
supreme among the nations, supreme on the earth!”

The Lord of hosts is with us: *
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. I will lead them to my holy mountain and make them joyful in my house of prayer.

Ant. 3 Glorious things are told of you, O city of God; the Lord founded you on his holy mountain!

Psalm 87

On the holy mountain is his city *
cherished by the Lord.
The Lord prefers the gates of Sion *
to all Jacob’s dwellings.
Of you are told glorious things, *
O city of God.

Babylon and Egypt I will count *
among those who know me;
Philistia, Tyre, Ethiopia, *
these will be her children
and Sion shall be called “Mother” *
for all shall be her children.

It is he, the Lord Most High, *
who gives each his place.
In his register of peoples he writes: *
‘These are her children’
and while they dance they will sing: *
‘In you all find their home.’

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Glorious things are told of you, O city of God; the Lord founded you on his holy mountain!

V/. I have brought you into the land of Carmel.
R/. To enjoy the fruits and blessings of it.

The First Reading

1 Kings 18:36-39, 41-45a

A reading from the First Book of Kings

Elijah prayed on the summit of Carmel, and heaven granted rain

And at the time of the offering of the oblation, Elijah the prophet came near and said, “O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that you are God in Israel, and that I am your servant, and that I have done all these things at your word. Answer me, O Lord, answer me, that this people may know that you, O Lord, are God, and that you have turned their hearts back.” Then the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the burnt offering, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench. And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said “The Lord, he is God; the Lord, he is God.”

And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go up, eat and drink for there is a sound of the rushing of rain.” So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he bowed himself down upon the earth, and put his face between his knees. And he said to his servant, “Go up now, look toward the sea.” And he went up and looked, and said, “There is nothing.” And he said, “Go again seven times.” And at the seventh time he said, “Behold, a little cloud like a man’s hand is rising out of the sea.” And he said, “Go up, say to Ahab, ‘Prepare your chariot and go down, lest the rain stop you.’” And in a little while the heavens grew black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain.

Responsory

R/. You care for the earth, give it water; you fill it with riches; * you bless its growth.
V/. The pastures of the wilderness flow with abundance, and the hills are girded with joy; * you bless its growth.
R/. You care for the earth, give it water; You fill it with riches; * you bless its growth.
V/. The pastures of the wilderness flow with abundance, and the hills are girded with joy; * you bless its growth.

The Second Reading  (Alternative 2)

May 10 and June 22, 1967

From the Allocutions of Pope Paul VI

Blessed are all who have believed

We can readily see that the Blessed Virgin Mary was endowed in high measure with a remarkable interior enlightenment, such as might have been anticipated in view of her sinlessness and the nature of her task in the world. The Gospels make abundantly clear that her soul was gifted with an extraordinary insight into the ways of God and a prophetic intuition. Yet above all else it was faith that most characterized the Mother of God — the kind of faith that does not need proof, but accepts a thing as true because God has spoken. The Second Vatican Council declares that “the Blessed Virgin went forward in her pilgrimage of faith,” and the Gospel records how generous and meritorious that pilgrimage was when it cites Elizabeth’s high tribute, which tells us so much about Mary’s psychology and holiness: “Blessed are you, for you have believed.”

We find confirmation of this faith, Our Lady’s foremost virtue, wherever the gospel tells of what she was, or what she said or what she did. Faced with the attitudes that characterize the incomparable figure of Mary in relation to the mystery of Christ realized in herself, we feel compelled to follow her example, and discover patterns for those who have, in conformity with God’s plan for our salvation chosen the religious life. She teaches us how to listen, how to explore, to accept, to make sacrifices; she teaches us how to meditate, to wait, to examine; she teaches us self-possession, and calm, absolute assurance in judgment and action; she teaches us, in short, the fullness of prayer and communion with God. And all these things, though we see them in Mary uniquely realized by that one soul which was full of grace and completely under the sway of the Holy Spirit, are yet all forms of faith, and therefore close to us and available not only for our admiration but for our imitation.

You have chosen the narrow, austere, arduous way of the ascetic life. You are in such a way committed to the pursuit of the supreme art of prayer and an intense spiritual life that you are branded as true searchers after the only fullness, the only peace, the only love: the union of the soul with God.

May the most holy Virgin Mary confirm you in your Carmelite vocation. May she safeguard your love for the things of the spirit. May she obtain for you the graces you need in your holy, laborious ascent towards the knowledge of the divine realm and the ineffable experiences of its dark nights and light-filled days. May she give you the desire for sanctity, the desire to bear eschatological witness to the kingdom of heaven. May she make you models for all the members of God’s Church, and bind you to them in brotherhood. And may she one day lead you into that possession of Christ and His glory which, even now, is the goal towards which your whole life is directed.

Responsory

R/. In faith receive the word of God which is able to save your souls. * Blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it.
V/. Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart. * Blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it.

Where the Vigil Office is celebrated:

Canticles

Ant. Bring us, O Mary, to the summit of Carmel, to Christ our heavenly life.

Canticle I

Is 2:2-3

All the peoples will come to the house of the Lord

The mountain where God has chosen to dwell (Ps 67:17)

It shall come to pass in the latter days *
that the mountain of the house of the Lord
shall be established as the highest of the mountains, †
and shall be raised above the hills, *
and all the nations shall flow to it.

And many people shall come, and say †
‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, *
to the house of the God of Jacob,
that he may teach us his ways *
and that we may walk in his paths.’
For out of Sion shall go forth the law, *
and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

Canticle II

Is 61:10-62:3

The prophet rejoices in the new Jerusalem

I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, as beautiful as a bride prepared to meet her husband (Rev 21:2)

I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, *
my soul shall exult in my God;
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation, *
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, *
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

For as the earth brings forth its shoots, *
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up,
so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise *
to spring forth before all the nations.

For Sion’s sake I will not keep silent, *
and for Jerusalem’s sake, I will not rest
until her vindication goes forth as brightness, *
and her salvation as a burning torch.

The nations shall see your vindication, *
and all the kings your glory;
and you shall be called by a new name *
which the mouth of the Lord will give.

You shall be a crown of beauty *
in the hand of the Lord,
and a royal diadem *
in the hand of your God.

Canticle III

Is 62:4-7

The glory of the new Jerusalem

Here God lives among men. He will make his home among them (Rev 21:3)

No longer are you to be named ‘Forsaken,’ *
nor your land ‘Abandoned,’
but you shall be called ‘My Delight,’ *
and your land, ‘The Wedded;’
for the Lord takes delight in you *
and your land will have its wedding.

Like a young man marrying a virgin, *
so will the one who built you wed you,
and as the bridegroom rejoices in his bride, *
so will your God rejoice in you.

On your walls, Jerusalem, *
I set watchmen.
Day or night *
they must never be silent.

You who keep the Lord mindful *
must take no rest.
Nor let him take rest †
till he has restored Jerusalem, *
and made her the boast of the earth.

Ant. Bring us, O Mary, to the summit of Carmel, to Christ our heavenly life.

Gospel

Lk 1:39-56

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke

Why should I be honored with a visit from the mother of my Lord?

Mary set out at that time and went as quickly as she could to a town in the hill country of Judah. She went into Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth. Now as soon as Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leaped in her womb and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. She gave a loud cry and said, “Of all women you are the most blessed, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. Why should I be honored with a visit from the mother of my Lord? For the moment your greeting reached my ears, the child in my womb leaped for joy. Yes, blessed is she who believed that the promise made her by the Lord would be fulfilled.”

And Mary said:

“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord
and my spirit exults in God my savior;
because he has looked upon his lowly handmaid.
Yes, from this day forward all generations will call me blessed,
for the Almighty has done great things for me.
Holy is his name,
and his mercy reaches from age to age for those who fear him.
He has shown the power of his arm,
he has routed the proud of heart.
He has pulled down princes from their thrones and exalted the lowly.
The hungry he has filled with good things, the rich sent empty away.
He has come to the help of Israel his servant, mindful of his mercy
—according to the promise he made to our ancestors of
his mercy to Abraham and to his descendants for ever.”

Mary stayed with Elizabeth about three months and then went back home.

Te Deum

You are God: we praise you; *
You are the Lord: we acclaim you;
You are the eternal Father: *
All creation worships you.

To you all angels, all the powers of heaven, *
Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise:
Holy, holy, holy, Lord, God of power and might, *
heaven and earth are full of your glory.

The glorious company of apostles praise you. 
The noble fellowship of prophets praise you. *
The white-robed army of martyrs praise you.

Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you: *
Father, of majesty unbounded,
your true and only Son, worthy of all worship, *
and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.

You, Christ, are the King of glory, *
the eternal Son of the Father.

When you became man to set us free *
you did not spurn the Virgin’s womb.

You overcame the sting of death, *
and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.

You are seated at God’s right hand in glory. *
We believe that you will come, and be our judge.

Come then, Lord, and help your people, *
bought with the price of your own blood,
and bring us with your saints*
to glory everlasting.

Save your people, Lord, and bless your inheritance.
 Govern and uphold them now and always.

Day by day we bless you.
 We praise your name for ever.

Keep us today, Lord, from all sin.
 Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy.

Lord, show us your love and mercy,
 for we have put our trust in you.

In you, Lord, is our hope:
 And we shall never hope in vain.

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Flowery border_British Library_medium

 

Morning Prayer

Hymn

Let us in spirit make our way
to Carmel’s mountain height;
our Virgin Mother calls us there
to gather flowers of light.

This is indeed a holy place
where God has ever reigned;
here hearts are healed in silent prayer,
and strength of mind attained.

This is where living water flowed
to save the thirsting land,
to clothe the desert with fresh grass,
with trees the burning sand.

Cradle of our religious life
is Carmel’s height austere;
wherever Mary turns her gaze
flow waters springing clear.

Let us adore the Trinity
the Father honors her,
the Son embraces her with love,
the Spirit reigns in her!

C.M.
Carmeli ad altos vertices
Tr. unknown

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Fragrant is the scent of your perfume, Immaculate Virgin. Let us follow in your footsteps.

Psalm 63

O God, you are my God, for you I long; *
for you my soul is thirsting.
My body pines for you *
like a dry, weary land without water.
So I gaze on you in the sanctuary *
to see your strength and your glory.

For your love is better than life, *
my lips will speak your praise.
So I will bless you all my life, *
in your name I will lift up my hands.
My soul shall be filled as with a banquet, *
my mouth shall praise you with joy.

On my bed I remember you. *
On you I muse through the night
for you have been my help; *
in the shadow of your wings I rejoice.
My soul clings to you; *
your right hand holds me fast.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Fragrant is the scent of your perfume, Immaculate Virgin. Let us follow in your footsteps.

Ant. 2 Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you; you are the most blessed of all women.

Canticle – Daniel 3:57-88, 56

Bless the Lord, all you works of the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Angels of the Lord, bless the Lord. *
You heavens, bless the Lord,
All you waters above the heavens, bless the Lord. *
All you hosts of the Lord, bless the Lord.
Sun and moon, bless the Lord. *
Stars of heaven, bless the Lord.

Every shower and dew, bless the Lord. *
All you winds, bless the Lord.
Fire and heat, bless the Lord. *
Cold and chill, bless the Lord.
Dew and rain, bless the Lord. *
Frost and chill, bless the Lord.
Ice and snow, bless the Lord. *
Nights and days, bless the Lord.
Light and darkness, bless the Lord. *
Lightnings and clouds, bless the Lord.

Let the earth bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Mountains and hills, bless the Lord. *
Everything growing from the earth, bless the Lord.
You springs, bless the Lord. *
Seas and rivers, bless the Lord.
You dolphins and all water creatures, bless the Lord. *
All you birds of the air, bless the Lord.
All you beasts, wild and tame, bless the Lord. *
You sons of men, bless the Lord.

O Israel, bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Priests of the Lord, bless the Lord. *
Servants of the Lord, bless the Lord.
Spirits and souls of the just, bless the Lord. *
Holy men of humble heart, bless the Lord.
Hananiah, Azariah, Mishael, bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.

Let us bless the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. *
Let us praise and exalt him above all for ever.
Blessed are you, Lord, in the firmament of heaven. *
Praiseworthy and glorious and exalted above all for ever.

Ant. Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you; you are the most blessed of all women.

Ant. 3 Blessed are you, O Virgin Mary: you gave birth to him who made you, yet remain a virgin forever.

Psalm 149

Sing a new song to the Lord, *
his praise in the assembly of the faithful.
Let Israel rejoice in its maker, *
let Zion’s sons exult in their king.
Let them praise his name with dancing *
and make music with timbrel and harp.

For the Lord takes delight in his people. *
He crowns the poor with salvation.
Let the faithful rejoice in their glory, *
shout for joy and take their rest.
Let the praise of God be on their lips *
and a two-edged sword in their hand,

to deal out vengeance to the nations *
and punishment on all the peoples;
to bind their kings in chains *
and their nobles in fetters of iron;
to carry out the sentence pre-ordained; *
this honor is for all his faithful.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Blessed are you, O Virgin Mary: you gave birth to him who made you, yet remain a virgin forever.

Reading

Is 35:1-2

Let the wilderness and the dry-lands exult,
let the wasteland rejoice and bloom,
let it bring forth flowers like the jonquil,
let it rejoice and sing for joy.
The glory of Lebanon is bestowed on it
the splendor of Carmel and Sharon;
they shall see the glory of the Lord,
the splendor of our God.

Short Responsory

R/. Under your protection we take refuge, * Mother of God most holy. Repeat R/.
V/. Do not turn away from the prayers that spring from our need, * Mother of God most holy.
Glory . . . R/.

Canticle of Zechariah

Ant. Jesus said to His Mother, “Woman, this is your son,” and to the disciple He said, “This is your Mother;” and from that hour the disciple took her as his own.

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; *
he has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty savior, *
born of the house of his servant David.

Through his holy prophets he promised of old †
that he would save us from our enemies, *
from the hands of all who hate us.

He promised to show mercy to our fathers*
and to remember his holy covenant.

This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham: *
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear, *
holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life.

You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High; *
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
to give his people knowledge of salvation *
by the forgiveness of their sins.

In the tender compassion of our God *
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, *
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Jesus said to His Mother, “Woman, this is your son,” and to the disciple He said, “This is your Mother;” and from that hour the disciple took her as his own.

Intercessions

Christ our Savior, the first-born of many brothers, gave us his Mother as our own. On this sacred day let us come to him with thankful hearts and say:

R/. For the gift of your Mother, we give glory to you, Lord.

Christ our Redeemer, you prepared a worthy dwelling place for yourself in the sinless Virgin Mary; may we work today in your service and hers, poor in spirit and pure in heart. R/.

Only Word of the Father, uttered in eternal silence and lovingly received in the womb of the Virgin, may our Carmelite vocation lead us, like Mary, to hear the Word of God and put it into practice. R/.

Christ our Teacher, you offer the Virgin Mary as the model of every virtue to those who seek you; may we, her children, mirror her life, especially in our charity towards all. R/.

Jesus, Son of Mary, you gave your Mother to the apostle John to take into his own keeping; in our familiarity with Mary may we experience your ineffable love. R/.

Christ, Spouse of the Church, you sent the fire of the Holy Spirit upon Mary when she was joined with the apostles in prayer; may the whole family of Carmel remain faithful in prayer with Mary, and so be continually renewed by the Holy Spirit. R/.

Our Father …

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

WhitefriarsLondonBookplate_BritishLibrary_small

 

Daytime Prayer

The complementary psalms are used.

Midmorning

Ant. O Mary, you are a mother beyond compare, worthy to be remembered by your children forever.

Psalm 120

To the Lord in the hour of my distress *
I call and he answers me.
“O Lord, save my soul from lying lips, *
from the tongue of the deceitful.”

What shall he repay you in return, *
O treacherous tongue?
The warriors arrows sharpened *
and coals, red-hot, blazing.

(Alas, that I abide a stranger in Meshech, *
dwell among the tents of Kedar!)

Long enough have I been dwelling *
with those who hate peace.
I am for peace, but when I speak, *
they are for fighting.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 121

I lift up my eyes to the mountains; *
from where shall come my help?
My help shall come from the Lord *
who made heaven and earth.

May he never allow you to stumble! *
Let him sleep not, your guard.
No, he sleeps not nor slumbers, *
Israel’s guard.

The Lord is your guard and your shade; *
at your right side he stands.
By day the sun shall not smite you *
nor the moon in the night.

The Lord will guard you from evil, *
he will guard you soul.
The Lord will guard your going and coming *
both now and for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 129

“They have pressed me hard from my youth,” *
this is Israel’s song.
“They have pressed me hard from my youth *
but could never destroy me.

They plowed my back like plowmen, *
drawing long furrows.
But the Lord who is just, has destroyed *
the yoke of the wicked.”

Let them be shamed and routed, *
those who hate Zion!
Let them be like grass on the roof *
that withers before it flowers.

With that no reaper fill his arms, *
no binder makes his sheaves
and those passing by will not say:
“On you the Lord’s blessing!” *
“We bless you in the name of the Lord.”

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Scripture Reading

Prov 8:32-34

And now, my sons, listen to me:
happy are those who keep my ways.
Hear instruction and be wise,
and do not neglect it.
Happy is the man who listens to me,
watching daily at my gates,
waiting beside my doors.

V/. Whoever finds me finds life.
R/. And will receive salvation from the Lord.

Midday

Ant. Your souls will rejoice in her mercy, and her praise will not bring you to shame.

Psalm 123

To you have I lifted up my eyes, *
you who dwell in the heavens;
my eyes, like the eyes of slaves *
on the hand of their lords.

Like the eyes of a servant *
on the hand of her mistress,
so our eyes are on the Lord our God *
till he show us his mercy.

Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy. *
We are filled with contempt.
Indeed all too full is our soul
with the scorn of the rich, *
with the proud man’s disdain.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 124

“If the Lord had not been on our side,” *
this is Israel’s song.
“If the Lord had not been on our side *
when men rose up against us,
then would they have swallowed us alive *
when their anger was kindled.

Then would the waters have engulfed us, *
the torrent gone over us;
over our head would have swept *
the raging waters.”

Blessed be the Lord who did not give us *
a prey to their teeth!
Our life, like a bird, has escaped *
from the snare of the fowler.

Indeed the snare has been broken *
and we have escaped.
Our help is in the name of the Lord, *
who made heaven and earth.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 125

Those who put their trust in the Lord
are like Mount Zion, that cannot be shaken, *
that stands for ever.

Jerusalem! The mountains surround her,
so the Lord surrounds his people *
both now and for ever.

For the scepter of the wicked shall not rest *
over the land of the just
for fear that the hands of the just *
should turn to evil.

Do good, Lord, to those who are good, *
to the upright of heart;
but the crooked and those who do evil, *
drive them away!

On Israel, peace!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Scripture Reading

Sir 24:15-16

I made Sion my stronghold, the holy city my resting-place, Jerusalem my throne. My roots spread out among the people that enjoys his favor, my God has granted me a share in his own domain; where his faithful servants are gathered I love to linger.

V/. My spirit is sweeter than honey.
R/. My inheritance sweeter than the honeycomb.

Midafternoon

Ant. With the fruit of her hands she planted a vineyard; her children stood up and proclaimed her blessed.

Psalm 126

When the Lord delivered Zion from bondage, *
it seemed like a dream.
Then was our mouth filled with laughter, *
on our lips there were songs.

The heathens themselves said: “What marvels *
the Lord worked for them!”
What marvels the Lord worked for us! *
Indeed we were glad.

Deliver us, O Lord, from our bondage *
as streams in dry land.
Those who are sowing in tears *
will sing when they reap.

They go out, they go out, full of tears, *
carrying seed for the sowing:
they come back, they come back, full of song, *
carrying their sheaves.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 127

If the Lord does not build the house, *
in vain do its builders labor;
if the Lord does not watch over the city, *
in vain does the watchman keep vigil.

In vain is your earlier rising, *
your going later to rest,
you who toil for the bread you eat, *
when he pours gifts on his beloved while they slumber.

Truly sons are a gift from the Lord, *
a blessing, the fruit of the womb.
Indeed the sons of youth *
are like arrows in the hand of a warrior.

O the happiness of the man *
who has filled his quiver with these arrows!
He will have no cause for shame *
when he disputes with his foes in the gateways.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Scripture Reading

Sir 24:23-25

No vine ever yielded fruit so fragrant; the enjoyment of honor and riches is the fruit I bear. It is I that give birth to all noble loving, all reverence, all true knowledge, and the holy gift of hope. From me comes every grace of faithful observance, from me all promise of life and vigor.

V/. Look down from heaven and see, and visit this vine.
R/. The vine your right hand has planted.

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

 

Mount Carmel Looking toward the sea_British Library_Medium

Evening Prayer II

Hymn

When thirst broke up the ground stricken at God’s command,
and crops lay on the long baked ridges of the soil,
swiftly Elias went where Carmel towered above,
scaling rough rocks with zeal and toil.

Great soul in fervent prayer, lifting his hands on high,
prophet, he pleaded there, turning God’s wrath again.
Hour after hour he strove for those marked down to die
unless the fields were saved with rain.

Then, far off, where the sea stretched in a distant plain,
a cloud fine as a hand lit in the deep blue cope;
and soon thunderclouds came, and after them the rain
drumming the dust with rhythms of hope.

Mary, we are those crops which drought of grace lays low,
you are that mystic cloud, that fruitful womb are you.
Your son, the God you nurse, is new life’s rain to us
who grow once more as hope comes true.

Spare us, great triune God, as we too bend in prayer,
help us scale the high stars, our mother’s worthy sons;
There, raised by her, we praise you everlastingly
and pour forth love’s unending songs.

12.12.12.8.
Bro. John Leonard Davies, O.C.D.

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Behold the handmaid of the Lord: let it be done to me according to your word.

Psalm 122

I rejoiced when I heard them say: *
“Let us go to God’s house.”
And now our feet are standing *
within your gates, O Jerusalem.

Jerusalem is built as a city *
strongly compact.
It is there that the tribes go up, *
the tribes of the Lord.

For Israel’s law it is, *
there to praise the Lord’s name.
There were set the thrones of judgment *
of the house of David.

For the peace of Jerusalem pray: *
“Peace be to your homes!
May peace reign in your walls, *
in your palaces, peace!”

For love of my brethren and friends *
I say: “Peace upon you!”
For love of the house of the Lord *
I will ask for your good.

Ant. Behold the handmaid of the Lord: let it be done to me according to your word.

Ant. 2 Mary heard the Word of God and kept it, treasuring it in her heart.

Psalm 127

If the Lord does not build the house, *
in vain do its builders labor;
if the Lord does not watch over the city, *
in vain does the watchman keep vigil.

In vain is your earlier rising, *
your going later to rest,
you who toil for the bread you eat: *
when he pours gifts on his beloved while they slumber.

Truly sons are a gift from the Lord, *
a blessing, the fruit of the womb.
Indeed the sons of youth *
are like arrows in the hand of a warrior.

O the happiness of the man *
who has filled his quiver with these arrows!
He will have no cause for shame *
when he disputes with his foes in the gateways.

Ant. Mary heard the Word of God and kept it, treasuring it in her heart.

Ant. 3 The apostles persevered in prayer together with Mary, the Mother of Jesus.

Canticle: Eph 1:3-10

Blessed be the God and Father *
of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us in Christ *
with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.

He chose us in him *
before the foundation of the world,
that we should be holy *
and blameless before him.

He destined us in love *
to be his sons through Jesus Christ,
according to the purpose of his will, †
to the praise of his glorious grace *
which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.

In him we have redemption through his blood, *
the forgiveness of our trespasses,
according to the riches of his grace *
which he lavished upon us.

He has made known to us †
in all wisdom and insight *
the mystery of his will,
according to his purpose *
which he set forth in Christ.

His purpose he set forth in Christ, *
as a plan for the fullness of time,
to unite all things in him, *
things in heaven and things on earth.

Ant. The apostles persevered in prayer together with Mary, the Mother of Jesus.

Scripture Reading

Gal 4:4-6

When the designated time had come, God sent forth his Son born of a woman, born under the law, to deliver from the law those who were subjected to it, so that we might receive our status as adopted sons. The proof that you are sons is the fact that God has sent forth into our hearts the spirit of his Son, which cries out “Abba, Father!”

Short Responsory

R/. I exult for joy in the Lord, * my soul rejoices in God. Repeat R/.
V/. For he has clothed me in the garments of salvation; he has wrapped me in the cloak of justice. * My soul rejoices in God.
Glory . . . R/.

Canticle of Mary

Ant. Mary, ever Virgin, has been given us as our Mother; she has taken pity on us; today we remember. Today all Carmel sings for joy as we keep a solemn festival in her honor whose name we bear.

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, *
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant, *
and from this day all generations will call me blessed.

The Almighty has done great things for me: *
holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him *
in every generation.

He has shown the strength of his arm, *
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,*
and has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with good things, *
and has sent the rich away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel*
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Mary, ever Virgin, has been given us as our Mother; she has taken pity on us; today we remember. Today all Carmel sings for joy as we keep a solemn festival in her honor whose name we bear.

Intercessions

As we honor the holy Mother of God, under whose name and patronage we live, let us pray with confidence to Christ our Lord and say:

R/. Through the intercession of the Mother of Carmel, hear us, O Lord.

You said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven;” may we stand with Mary among the poor and humble of the Lord, so that you may be our only wealth. R/.

You said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God;” in following the Immaculate Virgin may we come to love that purity of heart which makes us eager to see the Father’s face. R/.

You said, “Blessed are those who have not seen, and yet believe;” with Mary at our side, may we never cease to trust in the love you have for us as we journey in this night of faith. R/.

You said, “You ought to pray always and never lose heart;” teach us to pray like Mary, treasuring your word in our hearts and proclaiming it in our lives. R/.

You said, “A new commandment I give you: love one another as I have loved you;” united in heart and mind, may we be ready to spend our lives for our brothers and sisters and share with Mary in your work of redemption. R/.

Dying on the cross, you said to John, and through him to all disciples, “Behold your Mother;” may we always please you by living in the intimate company of the Mother of Grace. R/.

You said, “I want those you have given me to be with me where I am:” may all those who trusted in your everlasting mercy rejoice one day with you and Mary in our Father’s house. R/.

Our Father …

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

 

NDMC_antique-woodcut
The Banner of Carmel
Mother and Beauty of Carmel
The Moon Beneath Her Feet
Elijah and Elisha, Leaders of Carmel

 

 

Carmelitis Da Privilegia: Novena 7

Her vision of our Lady in the choir of the Incarnation

1. On the eve of the feast of St. Sebastian, the first year in which I was prioress at the Incarnation, at the beginning of the Salve Regina, I saw the Mother of God descend with a great multitude of angels and sit in the prioress’s choir stall where there was a statue of our Lady. In my opinion I didn’t then see the statue but our Lady herself. It seemed to me she looked something like she does in the painting the countess gave me; although the power to discern this was quickly taken away, for my faculties were soon held in great suspension. It seemed to me there were angels above the canopies of the stalls in the back and above the front stalls; although they were not in corporeal form, for this was an intellectual vision.

She remained for the whole of the Salve, and she told me: “You were indeed right in placing me here; I shall be present in the praises they give my Son, and I shall offer these praises to Him.”

2. After this I remained in the kind of prayer I now have, that of keeping my soul present with the Blessed Trinity. And it seemed to me that the Person of the Father drew me to Himself and spoke very pleasant words. Among them, while showing me what He wanted, He told me: “I gave you My Son, and the Holy Spirit, and this Blessed Virgin. What can you give Me?”

Saint Teresa of Avila
Spiritual Testimonies: 21


1. La víspera de San Sebastián, el primer año que vine a ser Priora en la Encarnación, comenzando la Salve, vi en la silla prioral, adonde está puesta nuestra Señora, bajar con gran multitud de ángeles la Madre de Dios y ponerse allí. A mi parecer, no vi la imagen entonces, sino esta Señora que digo. Parecióme se parecía algo a la imagen que me dio la Condesa aunque fue de presto el poderla determinar, por suspenderme luego mucho. Parecíame encima de las comas de las sillas y sobre los antepechos, ángeles, aunque no con forma corporal, que era visión intelectual.

Estuvo así toda la Salve, y díjome: “Bien acertaste en ponerme aquí; yo estaré presente a las alabanzas que hicieren a mi Hijo, y se las presentaré”.

2. Después de esto quedéme yo en la oración que traigo de estar el alma con la Santísima Trinidad, y parecíame que la persona del Padre me llegaba a Sí y decía palabras muy agradables. Entre ellas me dijo, mostrándome lo que quería: “Yo te di a mi Hijo y al Espíritu Santo y a esta Virgen. ¿Qué me puedes tú dar a mí?”.

Santa Teresa de Jesús
Las Relaciones: Capítulo 25

Choir Incarnation Avila British Library Blogfeatimage
Engraving of Carmelite nuns in prayer at the Monastery of the Incarnation; note the canopies above the choir stalls

 

SCRIPTURE
Romans 12:1-2

So then, my friends, because of God’s great mercy to us I appeal to you: Offer yourselves as a living sacrifice to God, dedicated to his service and pleasing to him. This is the true worship that you should offer. Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the will of God—what is good and is pleasing to him and is perfect.

NOVENA PRAYER

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!

 

Novena citations taken from The Collected Works of St. Teresa of Avila Translated by Kieran Kavanaugh, O.C.D. and Otilio Rodriguez, O.C.D. 
ICS Publications Copyright © 1976 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars,

Quote of the day: 14 July

Remember that your holy will
Is my rest, my only happiness.
I abandon myself and I fall asleep without fear
In your arms, O my divine Savior.
If you also fall asleep when the storm rages,
I always want to stay in deep peace.
But, Jesus, while you are asleep,
Prepare me
For the awakening!

Saint Thérèse of Lisieux 
Jesus, My Beloved, Remember!…
“Rappelle-toi” (PN 24), Stanza 32

 

Carnet Jaune 14jul97
On 14 July 1897 Mother Agnès of Jesus notes that Thérèse began to repeat “with a heavenly melody and accent” stanza 32 of her poem, “Rappelle-toi” | Screenshot detail

 

Read the full text of the poem in French here and in English here. Read this and more entries from Mother Agnès’ yellow notebook of her last conversations with Saint Thérèse during July 1897 here. You can explore the English website of the Archives of the Carmel of Lisieux here.

Quote of the day: 13 July

The First Holy Communion of St. Teresa of the Andes

 

It is impossible to describe what took place between my soul and Jesus.

I asked Jesus a thousand times that He would take me, and I experienced His dear voice for the first time. “Oh Jesus I love You, I adore You!” I prayed to Him for everybody. I felt the Virgin near me. Oh, how my heart expanded! For the first time, I experienced a delicious peace.

After making our thanksgiving, we went to the patio to share things with the poor, and each girl went to embrace her family. My Daddy kept kissing me. Being so happy, he lifted me up in his arms. Many little girls came to the house that day. What can I say of the gifts that were given to me? The bureau and my bed were filled.

Shortly after that time, we moved from that house (at 475 Ejercito Street). Since that first embrace, Jesus did not let me go but took me for Himself. Every day I went to Communion and talked with Jesus for a long time. My special devotion was to the Virgin. I told her everything. The earth no longer held any attraction for me.

Every year, I used to become sick on December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. Once when I was sick, I was looking at a picture of the Sacred Heart, and I heard a very sweet voice say to me: “I am alone on the altar for your love, and you can’t even suffer for a moment?”

From that time, the dear Jesus spoke to me, and I spent entire hours conversing with Him. That is the reason I enjoyed being alone. He went on teaching me how I should suffer and not complain and about intimate union with Him. Then He told me that He wanted me for Himself, that He would like me to become a Carmelite. Ah! Mother, you cannot imagine what Jesus was doing in my soul. At that time, I did not live in myself. It was Jesus who was living in me.

Saint Teresa of the Andes
From her autobiographical writings at age 15

 

Teresa-de-los-Andes-First-Communion
St. Teresa’s First Communion Portrait

 

Explore our blog posts concerning Saint Teresa of the Andes here.

 

The Writings of Saint Teresa of Jesus of the Andes: An Abridgement, Edited by Barbara Haight Garcia, OCDS
Translated by Father Michael D. Griffin, OCD. New Life Publishing Company, 2003

Paradisi Clavis: Novena 6

O my Jesus! What a sight it is when You through Your mercy return to offer Your hand and raise up a soul that has fallen in sin after having reached this stage! How such a soul knows the multitude of Your grandeurs and mercies and its own misery! In this state it is in truth consumed and knows Your splendors. Here it doesn’t dare raise its eyes, and here it raises them up so as to know what it owes You. Here it becomes a devotee of the Queen of heaven so that she might appease You; here it invokes the help of the saints that fell after having been called by You. Here it seems that everything You give it is undeserved because it sees that it doesn’t merit the ground on which it treads. Here, in approaching the sacraments, it has the living faith to see the power that God has placed in them; it praises You because You have left such a medicine and ointment for our wounds and because this medicine not only covers these wounds but takes them away completely. It is amazed by all this. And who, Lord of my soul, wouldn’t be amazed by so much mercy and a favor so large for a betrayal so ugly and abominable? I don’t know why my heart doesn’t break as I write this! For I am a wretched person!

Saint Teresa of Avila
The Book of Her Life: Chapter 19


¡Oh Jesús mío! ¡Qué es ver un alma que ha llegado aquí, caída en un pecado, cuando Vos por vuestra misericordia la tornáis a dar la mano y la levantáis! ¡Cómo conoce la multitud de vuestras grandezas y misericordias y su miseria! Aquí es el deshacerse de veras y conocer vuestras grandezas; aquí el no osar alzar los ojos; aquí es el levantarlos para conocer lo que os debe; aquí se hace devota de la Reina del Cielo para que os aplaque; aquí invoca los Santos que cayeron después de haberlos Vos llamado, para que la ayuden; aquí es el parecer que todo le viene ancho lo que le dais, porque ve no merece la tierra que pisa; el acudir a los Sacramentos; la fe viva que aquí le queda de ver la virtud que Dios en ellos puso; el alabaros porque dejasteis tal medicina y ungüento para nuestras llagas, que no las sobresanan, sino que del todo las quitan. Espántanse de esto. Y ¿quién, Señor de mi alma, no se ha de espantar de misericordia tan grande y merced tan crecida a traición tan fea y abominable? Que no sé cómo no se me parte el corazón, cuando esto escribo; porque soy ruin.

Santa Teresa de Jesús
Libro de la Vida: Capítulo 19

 

Teresa in a Nativity scene Antwerp 18th c Manuel Navarro
Saint Teresa depicted in a Nativity scene | Teresa, de la rueca a la pluma

 

SCRIPTURE
Romans 7:21-25

So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inmost self, but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin which dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!

NOVENA PRAYER

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!

 

Novena citations taken from The Collected Works of St. Teresa of Avila Translated by Kieran Kavanaugh, O.C.D. and Otilio Rodriguez, O.C.D. 
ICS Publications Copyright © 1976 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars,

Quote of the day: 12 July

We arrived yesterday afternoon at four-thirty. My brother was waiting for us at the station and was delighted to see us. He and his wife are doing everything they can to entertain us. This evening, Sunday, there’s a beautiful reception in their home in our honor….

As for me, I’m finding it hard to relax! None of that interests me! I’m absolutely like the fish you pull out of the water. They’re no longer in their element and they have to perish! This would have the same effect on me if I had to stay a lot longer. I feel uncomfortable, I’m out of sorts. This is affecting me physically, and it’s almost making me sick. However, I’m reasoning with myself and trying to gain the upper hand. I’m with you in spirit all day, and I say to myself, “Now he must be doing such and such a thing.”

I’m longing to be near you, my dear Louis. I love you with all my heart, and I feel my affection so much more when you’re not here with me. It would be impossible for me to live apart from you.

Saint Zélie Guérin Martin
Letter CF 108 to Saint Louis Martin (excerpt)
Lisieux, 31 August 1873

 

Louis-Zelie-Therese reliquary (2)
The relics of the Martin family saints: Louis, Thérèse, and Azélie | Tony Basilio / Flickr

 

Explore more of the correspondence of Louis Martin and Zélie Guerin here.

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