Quote of the day: 14 November

Let us remember this one thing. Throughout his life, Christ was unsparing of himself in his zeal to save souls. Our saints have likewise been zealous to save souls. Consider Saint Thérèse, as she offered her walk in the garden for a missionary. All our saints have been passionate apostles. So, too, must we be. This morning, we are going to make an examination of conscience in this regard. Are we other Christs and other Apostles? Are we true Carmelites? Or, are we not merely living smugly? Are we completely committed to the apostolate and eager to give our all to the souls who await our help?

Do we live in such a way that Christ is not deeply disappointed in us? We want to take care not to shy away from suffering, not to speak impulsively, and not to seek a life of comfort. We want to take care to follow our Rule in its demanding details and not just in its broad outline. In a word, we want to avoid pretending to be Carmelites, and instead to be genuine Carmelites. A pseudo-Carmelite is a pseudo-apostle. In ten, fifteen or thirty more years, you will come before God to render an account of your life. Then, Christ will show you all the souls you should have saved. You will have no valid excuse and will have to reply: “I could not spare my sleep or I was tired…”

True Carmelites are committed to saving the world. Day by day they grow in prayerfulness and year-by-year they become living embodiments of our Rule and Constitutions. Admittedly, we may be far from perfect at the beginning of our religious life. However, once we have completed our apprenticeship, we must be the living embodiment of our Rule and Constitutions for no other reason than to work with Christ for the salvation of the world. Pray to our saints and to the Virgin Mary to help you to attain that goal. Amen.

Père Jacques of Jesus

Excerpt from a retreat conference
Saturday evening 11 September 1943

 

Père-Jacques-de-Jèsus_portrait-headshot
Servant of God Père Jacques of Jesus, OCD (Lucien Bunel) | Photo credit: Discalced Carmelites
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Jacques, P 2005, Listen to the silence: a retreat with Père Jacques, translated from the French  and edited by Murphy F, ICS Publications, Washington DC.

 

 

Quote of the day: 13 November

Dear brothers and sisters, the beatification of Sister Mary of Jesus Crucified, which has gathered you here in Rome from all the countries of the Near East, has surely been for all of you a great moment of joy, a source of comfort, and an invitation to courage.

It’s not a moment of joy that comes and goes: it’s an open-ended source of grace. The Church in Rome has participated in this joy and, I dare say, the universal Church, looking with emotion at this little flower of the Holy Land, who has reached holiness in such a short time, which is the full flowering of mysticism.

I am happy to be with you once again this morning, to greet you again with all my affection, to converse with you like family, while still meditating on the meaning of this beatification, to gather its fruit. The life and virtues of Mariam Baouardy are now well known to you and I mentioned them in yesterday’s solemn liturgy.

But it is good to tell you again this morning how this “little Arab” has been a privileged witness of Jesus, of the love of the Church, and of action for peace. And you will understand even better the price that the Church attaches to the life of your Christian communities in the Holy Land and around the Holy Land.

Mariam is the fruit of this Holy Land. In her, everything speaks to us of Jesus. And first of all, the places where she lived: Nazareth, near which she was born; Bethlehem, where she consumed her sacrifice; and Mount Carmel, a symbol of the solitary prayer life that provided the setting for her religious life.

But above all, she brings us close to Calvary, since she has not ceased to carry in her life the cross of Jesus, in choosing her [religious] name “of Jesus Crucified”. The beatitudes find in her their fulfillment.

To see her, we believe that we’re hearing Jesus say to us: Blessed are the poor, Blessed are the humble, Blessed are those who seek only to serve, Blessed are the meek, Blessed are the peacemakers, Blessed are those who are persecuted. All her life expresses an unheard of familiarity with God, the fraternal love of others, and joy, which are evangelical indicators par excellence.

Saint John Paul II

Speech to Pilgrims for the Beatification
Sr. Mary of Jesus Crucified, Mariam Baouardy
13-14 November 1983

 

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Photo credit: Discalced Carmelites

 

14 November: All Carmelite Saints

November 14
ALL CARMELITE SAINTS

Feast

The whole family of Carmel in the homeland, with Mary its Mother at its head, is the reason for our joy and praise to the Father on this day. We recall our brothers and sisters who once dedicated their lives to continual prayer on earth and now share in the worship of heaven. We unite ourselves spiritually to their glory, all the while journeying along the paths they traveled with courage, as they lived in obedience to Christ and followed in the footsteps of Our Lady.

Invitatory

Ant. Jesus, Son of Mary, is the source of all holiness; come, let us worship him.

Invitatory psalm, as in the Ordinary

Office of Readings

Hymn

Come, let us praise the Virgin Queen
Who called her sons from earthly strife
To Carmel, ever since the scene
Of silent eremitic life.

The special call of Christ they heard,
As Mary’s liegemen they lived there,
With her to ponder on God’s word
Absorbed in solitary prayer.

Our prophets flourished, faithful, strong;
Our martyrs stained the ground with blood,
While in their wake the virgin throng
Brought pure and spotless hearts to God.

Hail, flowers from Carmel’s mountainside
And from its vales the lilies white,
With mystic roses opened wide
Of equal fragrance and delight!

You followed Christ your King and Lord
As Mary’s faithful servants there
And pondered on God’s sacred word
In lives of solitude and prayer.

Grant that, on Carmel’s mount of prayer,
We may, from this all-hallowed place,
Spread Jesu’s fragrance everywhere
As we, too, blossom forth in grace.

Praise to the Father evermore
And to the Spirit who indwells,
To Jesus whom that Virgin bore
From whom all Carmel’s beauty wells.

L.M.
Laudemus omnes Virginem

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it.

Psalm 1

Happy indeed is the man *
who follows not the counsel of the wicked;
nor lingers in the way of sinners *
nor sits in the company of scorners,
but whose delight is the law of the Lord *
and who ponders his law day and night.

He is like a tree that is planted *
beside the flowing waters,
that yields its fruit in due season †
and whose leaves shall never fade; *
and all that he does shall prosper.

Not so are the wicked, not so! †
For they like winnowed chaff *
shall be driven away by the wind.
When the wicked are judged they shall not stand, *
nor find room among those who are just;
for the Lord guards the way of the just *
but the way of the wicked leads to doom.

Ant. Blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it.

Ant. 2 The Lord has given his heritage to those who fear his name.

Psalm 61

O God, hear my cry! *
Listen to my prayer!
From the end of the earth I call; *
my heart is faint.

On the rock too high for me to reach *
set me on high,
O you who have been my refuge. *
my tower against the foe.

Let me dwell in your tent for ever *
and hide in the shelter of your wings.
For you, O God, hear my prayer, *
grant me the heritage of those who fear you.

May you lengthen the life of the king: *
may his years cover many generations.
May he ever sit enthroned before God: *
bid love and truth be his protection.

So I will always praise your name *
and day after day fulfill my vows.

Ant. The Lord has given his heritage to those who fear his name.

Ant. 3 I will bring them to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer.

Psalm 84

How lovely is your dwelling place, *
Lord, God of hosts.

My soul is longing and yearning, *
is yearning for the courts of the Lord.
My heart and my soul ring out their joy *
to God, the living God.

The sparrow herself finds a home *
and the swallow a nest for her brood;
she lays her young by your altars, *
Lord of hosts, my king and my God.

They are happy, who dwell in your house, *
forever singing your praise.
They are happy, whose strength is in you, *
in whose hearts are the roads to Zion.

As they go through the Bitter Valley †
they make it a place of springs, *
the autumn rain covers it with blessings.
They walk with ever growing strength, *
they will see the God of gods in Zion.

O Lord, God of hosts, hear my prayer, *
give ear, O God of Jacob.
Turn your eyes, O God, our shield, *
look on the face of your anointed.

One day within your courts *
is better than a thousand elsewhere.
The threshold of the house of God *
I prefer to the dwellings of the wicked.

For the Lord God is a rampart, a shield; *
he will give us his favor and glory.
The Lord will not refuse any good *
to those who walk without blame.

Lord, God of hosts, *
happy the man who trusts in you!

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

Everlasting light will shine upon your saints, Lord.
And they will live forever.

First Reading
From the book of Revelation
19:1-10; 21:1-7

The glory of the saints in the new Jerusalem

I, John, heard what sounded like the loud song of a great assembly in heaven. They were singing:

“Alleluia!
Salvation, glory and might belong to our God,
for his judgments are true and just!
He has condemned the great harlot who corrupted the earth with her harlotry.
He has avenged the blood of his servants which was shed by her hand.”

Once more they sang “Alleluia!” And as the smoke began to rise from her forever and ever, the four and twenty elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God seated on the throne and sang, “Amen! Alleluia!” A voice coming from the throne cried out:

“Praise our God, all you his servants,
the small and the great, who revere him!”

Then I heard what sounded like the shouts of a great crowd, or the roaring of the deep, or mighty peals of thunder, as they cried:

“Alleluia!
The Lord is king,
our God, the Almighty!
Let us rejoice and be glad, and give him glory!
For this is the wedding day of the Lamb;
his bride has prepared herself for the wedding.
She has been given a dress to wear made of finest linen, brilliant white”

(The linen dress is the virtuous deeds of God’s saints.)

The angel then said to me: “Write this down: Happy are they who have been invited to the wedding feast of the Lamb.” The angel continued, “These words are true; they come from God.” I fell at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, “No, get up! I am merely a fellow servant with you and your brothers who give witness to Jesus. Worship God alone. The prophetic spirit proves itself by witnessing to Jesus.”

Then I saw new heavens and a new earth. The former heavens and the former earth had passed away, and the sea was no longer. I also saw a new Jerusalem, the holy city, coming down out of heaven from God, beautiful as a bride prepared to meet her husband. I heard a loud voice from the throne cry out: “This is God’s dwelling among men. He shall dwell with them and they shall be his people, and he shall be their God, who is always with them. He shall wipe every tear from their eyes, and there shall be no more death or mourning, crying out or pain, for the former world has passed away.

The One who sat on the throne said to me, “See, I make all things new!” Then he said, “Write these matters down, for the words are trustworthy and true!” He went on to say: “These words are already fulfilled! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To anyone who thirsts I will give to drink without cost from the spring of life-giving water. He who wins the victory shall inherit these gifts; I will be his God and he shall be my son.”

Responsory

All who are victorious shall be clothed in white garments,
and I will not blot their names out of the book of life.
To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the fountain of life,
and I will not blot their names out of the book of life.

Second Reading
From the works of Saint Teresa of Jesus

Int. Cast., V, 1:2; Way, 11:4;
Found., 14:4; 4:6, 7; 29:33

We belong to a race of saints

All of us who wear this holy habit of Carmel are called to prayer and contemplation. This explains our origin; we are the descendants of those who felt this call, of those holy fathers on Mount Carmel who in such great solitude and contempt for the world sought this treasure, this precious pearl of contemplation that we are speaking about.

Let us remember our holy forebears of the past, those hermits whose lives we aim to imitate. We must remember our real founders, those holy fathers whose descendants we are. It was by way of poverty and humility, we know, that they came to the enjoyment of God.

On the subject of the beginnings of Orders, I sometimes hear it said that the Lord gave greater graces to those saints who went before us because they were the foundations. Quite so, but we too must always bear in mind what it means to be foundations for those who will come later. For if those of us who are alive now have not fallen away from what they did in the past, and those who come after us do the same, the building will always stand firm. What use is it to me for the saints of the past to have been what they were, if I come along after them and behave so badly that I leave the building in ruins because of my bad habits? For obviously those who come later don’t remember those who have died years before as clearly as they do the people they see around them. A fine state of affairs it is if I insist that I am not one of the first, and do not realize what a difference there is between my life and virtues, and the lives of those God has endowed with such graces!

Any of you who sees your Order falling away in any respect, must try to be the kind of stone the building can be rebuilt with—the Lord will help to rebuild it.

For love of our Lord I beg them to remember how quickly everything comes to an end, and what a favor our Lord has done us in bringing us to this Order, and what a punishment anyone who starts any kind of relaxation will deserve. They must always look at the race we are descended from—that race of holy prophets. What numbers of saints we have in heaven who have worn this habit of ours! We must have the holy audacity to aspire, with God’s help, to be like them. The struggle will not last long, but the outcome will be eternal.

Responsory

I will make my home with them and walk among them;
I will be their God and they shall be my people.
I will set up my dwelling among them.
I will be their God and they shall be my people.

Where the Vigil Office is celebrated:

Ant. The beauty of Carmel has been given to them; they will see the glory of the Lord and the splendor of our God.

Canticle I

Wisdom 3:1-6

The souls of the just are in the hands of God

Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord. Now … let them rest from their labors (Revelation 14:13).

The souls of the just are in the hand of God, *
and no torment shall touch them.

They seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead; *
and their passing away was thought an affliction
and their going forth from us, utter destruction. *
But they are in peace.

For if to others, indeed, they seem punished,
yet is their hope full of immortality; *
Chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed,
because God tried them *
and found them worthy of himself.

As gold in the furnace, he proved them, *
and as sacrificial offerings he took them to himself.

Canticle II

Wisdom 3:7-9

The future glory of the just

The just shall shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father (Matthew 13:43)

In the time of their visitation they shall shine *
and shall dart about as sparks through stubble;
They shall judge nations and rule over peoples, *
and the LORD shall be their King forever.

Those who trust in him shall understand truth, *
and the faithful shall abide with him in love:
Because grace and mercy are with his holy ones, *
and his care is with the elect.

Canticle III

Wisdom 10:17-21

God leads his people to deliverance

Those who had overcome the beast sang the canticle of Moses, the servant of God, and the canticle of the Lamb (Revelation 15:2, 3).

God gave the holy ones the recompense of their labors, *
conducted them by a wondrous road,
and became a shelter for them by day *
and a starry flame by night.

He took them across the Red Sea *
and brought them through the deep waters
but their enemies he overwhelmed, *
and cast them up from the bottom of the depths.

Therefore the righteous despoiled the wicked;
and they sang, O Lord, your holy name *
a
nd praised in unison your conquering hand
because Wisdom opened the mouths of the dumb, *
and gave ready speech to infants

Gospel
Mt 25:34-46

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew

In so far as you did this to one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it to me 

Jesus said to his disciples: “The King will say to those on his right hand, ‘Come, you whom my Father has blessed, take for your heritage the kingdom prepared for you since the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me drink; I was a stranger and you made me welcome; naked and you clothed me, sick and you visited me, in prison and you came to see me.’ Then the virtuous will say to him in reply, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you; or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and make you welcome; naked and clothe you; sick or in prison and go to see you?’ And the King will answer, ‘I tell you solemnly, in so far as you did this to one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it to me.’ Next he will say to those on his left hand, ‘Go away from me, with your curse upon you, to the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you never gave me food; I was thirsty and you never gave me anything to drink; I was a stranger and you never made me welcome, naked and you never clothed me, sick and in prison and you never visited me.’ Then it will be their turn to ask, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty, a stranger or naked, sick or in prison, and did not come to your help?’ Then he will answer, ‘I tell you solemnly, in so far as you neglected to do this to one of the least of these, you neglected to do it to me.’ And they will go away to eternal punishment, and the virtuous to eternal life.”

Hymn, Te Deum.

Prayer

Lord,
may the patronage
of the Blessed Virgin Mary, our Mother,
and the prayers of all the saints of Carmel
help us to walk steadfastly in their footsteps,
and by our prayers and good works
ever further the cause of your Church.

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

 

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Morning Prayer

Hymn

O Jesus, source of endless life
Be near to help us and defend;
O Mary, Mother of our Lord,
Lead us to heaven in the end.

You angel hosts suffused with life,
You Patriarchs who heard God’s call,
You Prophets, knowing mysteries,
Obtain forgiveness for us all.

O Saints of Carmel, throned above
In Mary’s court, obtain this grace
That where you are in glory now
We too may find a resting place.

May hosts of martyrs intercede
For us on earth, confessors pray
And choirs of holy virgins plead
That God may wash our sins away.

O blessed saints of solitude,
And all the heavenly company,
Obtain for us that life in God
Which lasts for all eternity.

Praise to the Father evermore
And to the Spirit he bestows,
To Jesus whom that Virgin bore
From whom all Carmel’s beauty flows.

L.M.
Jesu, Salvator saeculi

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Your saints, Lord, as they watched in prayer, saw your strength and your glory.

Psalms and canticle from Sunday, Week I

Ant. 2 All you men and women, saints of God, O bless the Lord forever.

Ant. 3 Eye has not seen nor ear heard what God has prepared for those who love him.

Reading
1 Peter 2:9-10

You, however, are a “chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people he claims for his own to proclaim the glorious works” of the One who called you from darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were no people, but now you are God’s people; once there was no mercy for you, but now you have found mercy.

Responsory

Let the just rejoice and sing for joy in the Lord.
Let the just rejoice and sing for joy in the Lord.
Delight in his love, you pure of heart.
And sing for joy in the Lord.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Let the just rejoice and sing for joy in the Lord.

Canticle of Zecharian

Ant. With such a cloud of witnesses around us, let us steadfastly run the race that lies before us, our eyes fixed on Jesus who inspires and perfects our faith.

Intercessions

Let us give thanks to God our Father, who gives us the joy of honoring our brothers and sisters, the saints of Carmel. United with them and with the Virgin Mary, our Mother, let us say:
We glorify you, Lord.

Lord, you called your people into the desert to make with them a covenant of love,
renew your covenant with us in Jesus Christ.

You have made us brothers and sisters of Mary, to keep your word and treasure it in our hearts;
help us to be like her, serving Christ and sharing in his work of salvation.

You called us to follow Elijah in intimacy with you,
may we live continually in your presence, and burn with zeal for your glory.

You raised up our Order in the Church to live in dedication to you and to seek union with you in prayer and contemplation,
may we ever seek your face, and so teach others how to live as your friends.

You gave our saints such apostolic zeal and charity that they did not hesitate to lay down their lives for their brothers and sisters,
may we bear the death of Christ continually in our bodies, and so share his work of redemption, even at the cost of our lives.

Our Father…

Prayer

Lord,
may the patronage
of the Blessed Virgin Mary, our Mother,
and the prayers of all the saints of Carmel
help us to walk steadfastly in their footsteps,
and by our prayers and good works
ever further the cause of your Church.

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

 

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Daytime Prayer

Antiphons and psalms from the current weekday.

Midmorning

Reading
Ephesians 6:17-18

Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the spirit, the word of God. At every opportunity pray in the Spirit, using prayers and petitions of every sort. Pray constantly and attentively for all in the holy company.

Your word is a lamp for my feet.
And a light on my path.

Midday

Reading
Ephesians 5:18b-20

Be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and inspired songs. Sing praise to the Lord with all your hearts. Give thanks to God the Father always and for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

All your creatures praise you, Lord.
Your saints shall bless your name.

Midafternoon

Reading
2 Corinthians 4:17-18

The present burden of our trial is light enough, and earns for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison. We do not fix our gaze on what is seen but on what is unseen. What is seen is transitory; what is unseen lasts forever.

My chosen ones shall not labor in vain.
They are the offspring of those the Lord has blessed.

Prayer

Lord,
may the patronage
of the Blessed Virgin Mary, our Mother,
and the prayers of all the saints of Carmel
help us to walk steadfastly in their footsteps,
and by our prayers and good works
ever further the cause of your Church.

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

 

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Evening Prayer

Hymn

On Carmel’s mount Our Lady tends
A living garden rich in flowers;
God’s Word has sown the seed of grace,
That grows in silent, prayer-filled hours.

In heaven’s glory Carmel’s saints
With Christ their King for ever reign;
The firstborn Son enfolds in joy
His brethren, born of Mary’s pain.

Dark night gives way to purest light,
The mystic sees with light unsealed;
The saints who bore Christ’s wounds of love
Now see Christ’s wounds in love revealed.

The white-robed martyrs sing the praise
Of Christ, the martyrs’ glorious Lord;
The lowly now are lifted high,
To gain at last their great reward.

Give thanks to God, the fount of grace,
Give thanks to God, our victim-priest,
Give thanks to God, the breath of life,
For Carmel’s saints on their great feast.

L.M.
James Quinn, S.J.

Psalmody

Ant. 1 In my Father’s house there are many mansions, says the Lord.

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 forever.

Ant. In my Father’s house there are many mansions, says the Lord.

Ant. 2 I no longer call you servants, but my friends, for I have shared with you everything I have heard from my Father.

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 forever.
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 forever.

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 forever. *
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. I no longer call you servants, but my friends, for I have shared with you everything I have heard from my Father.

Ant. 3 I heard what seemed to be the mighty voice of a great multitude in heaven, crying: “Alleluia! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God!”

Canticle: Rev 4:11; 5:9, 10, 12

O Lord our God, you are worthy *
to receive glory and honor and power.
For you have created all things; *
by your will they came to be and were made.

Worthy are you, O Lord, *
to receive the scroll and break open its seals.
For you were slain; †
with your blood you purchased for God *
men of every race and tongue, of every people and nation.

You made of them a kingdom and priests to serve our God, *
and they shall reign on the earth.

Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, *
to receive power and riches,
wisdom and strength, *
honor and glory and praise.

Ant. I heard what seemed to be the mighty voice of a great multitude in heaven, crying: “Alleluia! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God!”

Reading
Rom 8:28-30

We know that God makes all things work together for the good of those who have been called according to his decree. Those whom he foreknew he predestined to share the image of his Son, that the Son might be the first-born of many brothers. Those he predestined he likewise called; those he called he also justified; and those he justified he in turn glorified.

Responsory

Let the just rejoice and exult at the sight of God.
Let the just rejoice and exult at the sight of God.
They shall delight in holiness,
at the sight of God.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Let the just rejoice and exult at the sight of God.

Canticle of Mary

Ant. You have left all things and have followed me; you will be repaid a hundred times over, and gain eternal life.

Intercessions

Safe in the protection of Mary, our Mother, let us call upon Jesus, our Lord and Savior, through the intercession of the Saints of Carmel:
Lord, make us holy in the truth.

You have called your faithful ones to Carmel, so that they might follow you more closely in the ways of love;
in love, may we perform the works of truth in your Church.

You have granted everlasting mutual love to those of our family who are with you in heaven;
grant your peace to our communities, and make us one in heart and mind.

It was your will that our saints, pledged to the service of the Blessed Virgin Mary, should reflect her virtues in their lives,
as we go forward each day in newness of life, may we be faithful to the spirit of our Order, endowed with your Mother’s name and patronage.

You raised up the Order of Carmel in your Church to seek union with you in prayer and self-denial, and to share the treasures of contemplation with others;
may we be attentive to the voice of your Spirit within us crying, “Abba, Father,” and ever invite the faithful to the life of prayer.

You are the crown and everlasting reward of our saints;
bring our departed brothers and sisters to share eternal joy with you in heaven.

Our Father…

Prayer

Lord,
may the patronage
of the Blessed Virgin Mary, our Mother,
and the prayers of all the saints of Carmel
help us to walk steadfastly in their footsteps,
and by our prayers and good works
ever further the cause of your Church.

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

 

All Carmelite Saints Ravenna icon
Iconography from the Carmel of Ravenna, Italy | Photo credit: the Carmelites

Protege mi vida

Me sorprendo buscando todo el contenido de una frase del salmo 85, que me parece sumamente rica. “Protege mi vida, que soy un fiel tuyo”. En un primer momento me parecía sencillo pensar que era una simple súplica para que Dios velara por me vida. Pero sentí que algo mucho más grande se encerraba en esta súplica.

Quote of the day: 11 November

The Monastery of the Carmelite Fathers

Mount Carmel, 1919 – 1931

excerpts from Father Elias Friedman’s transcription of a memoir by Francis Lamb O.C.D.
in the archives of the monastery

 


Francis Stuart Lamb was born, 3rd July 1867, into a family connected to the British aristocracy, in particular, to the family of Lord Melbourne, Prime Minister of England under Queen Victoria. Professed in the Anglo-Irish Province of the OCD, 14th October 1886, he was ordained priest, 31st January 1892. After terms as Prior at Wincanton and Gerard’s Cross, he was appointed Vicar Provincial of his province, 15th June 1915. On the 16th December 1918, he received patents as Vicar of Mount Carmel and Vicar Provincial of the Palestine Province of the Order, «ad instar». He arrived in Haifa, 30th January 1919. On the 4th of September 1919, he was named Vicar of the Carmelite Nuns in Haifa, then in Zaourah (Bat-Galim). A year later he offered the General his resignation because his confrères wanted a Superior who could speak Italian; but the General (Luke), refused to accept it. On 19th March 1934, he left for Rome to attend the canonization of St. Thérèse of Lisieux. In 1935, Fr. Lamb handed over the Vicariate to Fr Edmund O’Callaghan and went to live in Cairo, 1935-1938. From 1938, he resided in the new OCD foundation in Jerusalem. Together with other religious, he was the object of a death-warrant issued against him by Abu Muhamad, leader of the Northern District of the Arab Palestine Revolt (dated 24 Rabi’a al-Thani, 1358 of the Hegira: mid-June 1939). On the 31stof August 1945, Fr. Lamb became conventual again on Mount Carmel. While in residence at El Muhraqah [the Carmelite monastery at the place of Elijah’s sacrifice], he took ill and was rushed back to [Stella Maris] monastery, where he passed away, 27th April 1950, aged 83, after some months of illness.


 

One day, at the end of the month of October, or the beginning of November 1918, I received a telegram from the Fr. General of the Order, Clement, saying: «Come to Rome. You must go to Mount Carmel for a few months». I replied: «Will come as soon as passport can be obtained».

Over and over again I applied for the necessary passport and permission to go to Rome and from there to Mount Carmel, Palestine. I received many promises that permission would be granted, but nothing more.

Losing all hope, I applied to the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster, who promised to do all in his power to help me.

Another telegram came from Rome, saying: «When are you coming?» My reply was: «As soon as the passport can be arranged».

After a still further delay, I appealed again to the Cardinal, who, on seeing me, said: «Hav’nt you gone, yet?»

His Eminence, there and then, telephoned to the Hon. M. Long, Member of Parliament. All doors flew open and I was sent for by the Foreign Office. The Foreign Minister endorsed my passport, the Italian authorities were advised and on December the 8th 1918, I left London and by 11 o’clock that night, I found myself wandering around, lost, so to speak, in the darkened streets of the great city of Paris…

I received a hearty welcome at the General’s House, but FFir. General expressed his disappointment when he learned that I did not know a word of Italian. He had received a mistaken impression because I had replied to two letters in Italian — translated for me by a friend. The next day, Fr. General sent for me and suggested, that, since this was my first visit to Rome, he would ask Fr. Florence, my future companion to Mount Carmel, to show me St. Peter’s and all the other beautiful churches and buildings in the Eternal City. Fr. Florence very kindly went out of his way to show me all that there was to be seen: the Vatican museum, the Colosseum, the Catacombs, the Prison of St. Peter, besides many beautiful works of art by the great masters.

After Chrismas, Fr. General called me to his room and asked me whom he should nominate as Vicar Provincial of the Anglo-Irish province, a post I wished to resign while I was on Mount Carmel. I recommended Fr. Ambrose, but the Fathers in England pressed for my return, only to receive the answer from the General: «Not for the present». He forthwith gave me a patent as Vicar of Mount Carmel with the power of  Provincial «ad instar». He then graciously took me to meet His Holiness, Pope Benedict XV, in a private audience, introducing me as the new Vicar of Mount Carmel. I kissed the feet of His Holiness, who was standing at his desk, and received his special blessing.

 

Stella Maris State of Israel Bit of Haifa Flickr Blogfeatimage
In December 2010 the State of Israel featured this photo of Stella Maris Monastery and Pilgrim’s Hostel in their Flickr photo album, calling the image, “A Bit of Haifa”

 

Read more of the history of the reconstruction and restoration of the Carmelite shrines on Mount Carmel following the First World War as recorded in Father Francis Lamb’s memoirs here.

Quote of the day: 10 November

My God, is it possible to have lived without thinking of Jesus, without loving Jesus, without living for Jesus and in Jesus?

Now that your grace has awakened me, now that my eyes have seen, my hands have touched, my ears have heard, my heart has loved—yes, I love Jesus Christ. I shall take care not to hide it. I am in honor bound to proclaim it before the world.

I love Jesus Christ—that’s the secret of my immense peace which has gone on increasing since the first moment I began to love. I love Jesus Christ—this is what I want to proclaim to the ends of the earth.

I wish that the walls of this temple would expand to include the millions who live on the earth, so that my voice could reach and penetrate the depths of their hearts, making them vibrate in unison with mine, all responding together in one great hymn of joy and triumph, echoing from earth to heaven, “we too love Jesus Christ.”

Servant of God Hermann Cohen

Father Augustine Mary of the Blessed Sacrament
Born Hamburg 10 November 1820
Died Berlin 20 January 1871

 

Hermann-Cohen_full-portrait
Father Augustine-Mary of the Blessed Sacrament, the Servant of God Hermann Cohen | Image credit: Discalced Carmelites

 

An interesting biographical sketch of the Servant of God, illustrated with photos is here. Born in a Jewish family in Hamburg, it outlines Father Hermann’s journey from Hamburg to Paris as a student of Franz Liszt in order to become a successful, internationally-recognized concert pianist, until his conversion in May 1847 while substituting for a friend as music director for Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.  Two years later, he entered the Discalced Carmelite friars in Le Broussey, France, exercising a rich and fruitful ministry.

A brief biographical article written by another Jewish convert and Discalced Carmelite, Father Elias Friedman, is here.

The official Discalced Carmelite biography published in Italian by the Postulator General is here.

 

Hermann Cohen tomb le Broussey P1030779
The tomb of the Servant of God in the Discalced Carmelite priory church of Le Broussey | Photo credit: Discalced Carmelites

 

 

Tierney, T 2017, A Life of Hermann Cohen: From Franz Liszt to John of the Cross, Balboa Press, Bloomington, IN

Quote of the day: 9 November

May the Virgin of Carmel, whose statues overlook the rías that make up the beauty of this land of Galicia, always accompany you. May She be the star that guides you, the one that never disappears from your horizon. The one who leads you to God, to the safe harbor.

Saint John Paul II

Address to Maritime Workers
Santiago de Compostela, Spain
9 November 1982

 

NDMC_La_Virgen_del_Carmen_de_Monteferro_(14563339950)
The monument to the ‘Universal Navy’ at Monteferro, Nigrán in Spain—overlooking the Ría de Vigo—features a grand statue of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, the patroness of the Spanish Navy. The Latin inscription, “Hail, Queen of the Seas” evokes the patronage of Our Lady over all sailors and maritime workers
Contando Estrelas / Wikimedia Commons

 

Quote of the day: 8 November

You must build a little cell within your soul as I do. Remember that God is there and enter it from time to time; when you feel nervous or you’re unhappy, quickly seek refuge there and tell the Master all about it.

Ah, if you got to know Him a little, prayer wouldn’t bore you anymore; to me it seems to be rest, relaxation. We come quite simply to the One we love, stay close to Him like a little child in the arms of its mother, and we let our heart go.

You used to love sitting very close to me and telling me your secrets; that is just how you must go [to] Him; if only you knew how well He understands…. You wouldn’t suffer any more if you understood that.

It is the secret of life in Carmel: the life of a Carmelite is a communion with God from morning to evening, and from evening to morning. If He did not fill our cells and our cloisters, ah! How empty they would be! But through everything, [we] see Him, for we bear Him within us, and our life is an anticipated Heaven.

I ask God to teach you all these secrets, and I am keeping you in my little cell; for your part, keep me in yours, and that way we will never be parted.

Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity

Letter 123 to Françoise de Sourdon
Thursday, 19 June 1902

 

Valladolid-adoration
Ángel Cantero, archivalladolid / Flickr 

 

Elizabeth of the Trinity, S 2003, The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel, translated from the French by Nash, A, ICS Publications, Washington DC

St. Elizabeth of the Trinity Novena – Day 9

O my Three, my All, my Beatitude, infinite Solitude, Immensity in which I lose myself, I surrender myself to You as Your prey

Intention

For an increase in the fruit of self-control

St. Paul speaks

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. (Galatians 5:22-23)

Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity speaks

O my God, Trinity whom I adore, help me to forget myself entirely that I may be established in You as still and as peaceful as if my soul were already in eternity.  May nothing trouble my peace or make me leave You, O my Unchanging One, but may each minute carry me further into the depths of Your Mystery.  Give peace to my soul; make it Your heaven, Your beloved dwelling, and Your resting place.  May I never leave You there alone but be wholly present, my faith wholly vigilant, wholly adoring, and wholly surrendered to Your creative Action.

O my beloved Christ, crucified by love, I wish to be a bride for Your Heart; I wish to cover You with glory; I wish to love You… even unto death!  But I feel my weakness, and I ask You to “clothe me with Yourself,” to identify my soul with all the movements of Your Soul, to overwhelm me, to possess me, to substitute Yourself for me that my life may be but a radiance of Your Life.  Come into me as Adorer, as Restorer, as Savior.  O Eternal Word, Word of my God, I want to spend my life in listening to You, to become wholly teachable that I may learn all from You.  Then, through all nights, all voids, all helplessness, I want to gaze on You always and remain in Your great light.  O my beloved Star, so fascinate me that I may not withdraw from Your radiance.

O consuming Fire, Spirit of Love, “come upon me,” and create in my soul a kind of incarnation of the Word: that I may be another humanity for Him in which He can renew His whole Mystery.  And You, O Father, bend lovingly over  Your poor little creature; “cover her with Your shadow,” seeing in her only the “Beloved in whom You are well pleased.”

O my Three, my All, my Beatitude, infinite Solitude, Immensity in which I lose myself, I surrender myself to You as Your prey.  Bury Yourself in me that I may bury myself in You until I depart to contemplate in Your light the abyss of Your greatness.

Meditation 

St. Elizabeth’s biographer, Fr. Conrad de Meester, OCD, writes that her self-control during the last two years before she entered the Carmel of Dijon was quite evident and permitted the depth and richness of her heart to become visible to others around her. Even in her famous prayer to the Holy Trinity, that sense of self-mastery shines through as she writes these self-effacing lines: “to forget myself entirely… as still and as peaceful… may nothing trouble my peace… wholly present… wholly surrendered.” Like a radiology technician who instructs a patient, “don’t breathe, don’t move”, it seems as if St. Elizabeth is choosing not to breathe, not to move, but rather to remain transfixed as she gazes on her beloved Star.

And what about us? We may recognize that we need to grow in self-control, but have no clue where or how to begin. Why not begin with our prayer lives, our spiritual habits? If we can devote 5 minutes daily to devotion, scripture, meditation, even to silence, that 5 minutes of self-discipline can enable us to grow in self-mastery in other areas of our lives, as well. Is it worth a try? If we answer, “yes,” then St. Elizabeth probably would say this novena was worth the effort.

NOVENA PRAYER 

O Saint Elizabeth!
In your great love of God,
You were always so close
to your friends’ needs.
Now, in Heaven,
Face to face with the Lord,
Do intervene near Him
for the needs we recommend to you.

(Make your request)

Teach us how to abide,
in Love and Faith,
with the Holy Trinity
in the utmost of our heart.
Teach us how to radiate God’s Love
amongst men, in our everyday life
just as you did yourself,
so that we may be a praise of God’s glory.

Our Father… (pray slowly, contemplating the meaning of the prayer)

Glory be… (three times, in praise of the indwelling Trinity)

 

8x10.ai
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center / Flickr

 

Scripture passages for the novena provided by Bible Gateway

Prayer to the Holy Trinity translated by the Discalced Carmelite nuns of Boston Carmel

Novena Prayer translated by the nuns of the Carmel of Dijon

References to Fr. Conrad de Meester’s biography of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity are drawn from Rien Moins Que Dieu: Sainte Élisabeth de la Trinité (Presses de la Renaissance, Paris, 2017)

Novena a Santa Isabel de la Trinidad — Día 9

Oh, mis Tres, mi Todo, mi Bienaventuranza, Soledad infinita, Inmensidad donde me pierdo

San Pablo nos habla

Te encargo que guardes este mandato sin mancha ni reproche hasta la venida de nuestro Señor Jesucristo, la cual Dios a su debido tiempo hará que se cumpla.

Al único y bendito Soberano,
Rey de reyes y Señor de señores,
al único inmortal,
que vive en luz inaccesible,
a quien nadie ha visto ni puede ver,
a él sea el honor y el poder eternamente. Amén.
(2 Tim 6,14-16)

La Elevación de Santa Isabel

“Oh, mis Tres, mi Todo, mi Bienaventuranza, Soledad infinita, Inmensidad donde me pierdo, me entrego a Vos como una presa. Encerraos en mí para que yo me encierre en Vos, en espera de ir a contemplar en vuestra luz el abismo de vuestras grandezas.”

Oración Final

¡Oh! Santa Isabel,
en tu gran amor a Dios,
estabas siempre tan próxima
de las necesidades de tus amigos.
Ahora, ya que estás en el Cielo
delante de la faz del Señor,
intercede cerca de El
en favor de las intenciones que te recomendamos.

Formular aquí su deseo

Enséñanos, en la fe y en el amor,
a vivir con la Santísima Trinidad,
en lo más profundo de nuestro corazón.
Enséñanos, como tú,
a irradiar el amor de Dios a los hombres,
en nuestra vida de cada día,
para ser una alabanza de su Gloria.

Rezar lentamente: Padre Nuestro…

y tres veces Gloria al Padre, al Hijo y al Espíritu Santo…

 

NASA Johnson 29jun19 Flickr 48182120946_c6a1dbb0e2_o
nasa2explore / Flickr

 

Para conocer más sobre Santa Isabel de la Trinidad haga clic aquí

St. Elizabeth of the Trinity Novena – Day 8

Quite gently, with patience and God’s help, we get there in the end

Intention

For an increase in the fruit of gentleness

St. Paul speaks

I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. (Ephesians 4:1-3)

Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity speaks

Be at peace. I don’t believe you’re crazy yet, just nervous and overexcited, and when you’re like that, you make others suffer too. Ah, if I could teach you the secret of happiness as God has taught it to me. You say I don’t have any worries or sufferings; it’s true that I’m very happy, but if you only knew that a person can be just as happy even when she is crossed. We must always keep our eyes on God. In the beginning it’s necessary to make an effort when we’re just boiling inside, but quite gently, with patience and God’s help, we get there in the end. (Letter 123 to Françoise de Sourdon, 19 June 1902)

Meditation 

During the diocesan investigation process into Saint Elizabeth’s holiness, her sisters in the Carmel of Dijon consistently mentioned Elizabeth’s douceur, her spirit of gentleness. This is a quality that we have seen in her correspondence, such as today’s letter to young Françoise. When Elizabeth tells her friend ‘Framboise’ “I don’t believe you’re crazy yet, just nervous and overexcited”, there is a calm, gentle, maternal voice that seems to resound. Isn’t the fruit of gentleness seen not only in how we treat others but also in how we treat ourselves? How can we take Elizabeth’s advice and put it into practice today?

NOVENA PRAYER 

O Saint Elizabeth!
In your great love of God,
You were always so close
to your friends’ needs.
Now, in Heaven,
Face to face with the Lord,
Do intervene near Him
for the needs we recommend to you.

(Make your request)

Teach us how to abide,
in Love and Faith,
with the Holy Trinity
in the utmost of our heart.
Teach us how to radiate God’s Love
amongst men, in our everyday life
just as you did yourself,
so that we may be a praise of God’s glory.

Our Father… (pray slowly, contemplating the meaning of the prayer)

Glory be… (three times, in praise of the indwelling Trinity)

 

gentle 15mar18
David Bohnsack, mccj / Facebook (Used by permission)

 

Elizabeth of the Trinity, S 2003, The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel, translated from the French by Nash, A, ICS Publications, Washington DC

Novena a Santa Isabel de la Trinidad — Día 8

Y vos, oh Padre, inclinaos hacia vuestra pobre pequeña criatura

San Pablo nos habla

Rogamos que ustedes sean fortalecidos con todo poder según la potencia de Su gloria, para obtener toda perseverancia y paciencia, con gozo dando gracias al Padre que nos ha capacitado para compartir la herencia de los santos en la Luz. Porque Él nos libró del dominio[m] de las tinieblas y nos trasladó al reino de Su Hijo amado, en quien tenemos redención: el perdón de los pecados. (Col 1,11-14)

La Elevación de Santa Isabel

“Y vos, oh Padre, inclinaos hacia vuestra pobre pequeña criatura, ‘cubridla con vuestra sombra’, no veáis en ella más que al ‘Amado en el que habéis puesto todas vuestras complacencias’.”

Oración Final

¡Oh! Santa Isabel,
en tu gran amor a Dios,
estabas siempre tan próxima
de las necesidades de tus amigos.
Ahora, ya que estás en el Cielo
delante de la faz del Señor,
intercede cerca de El
en favor de las intenciones que te recomendamos.

Formular aquí su deseo

Enséñanos, en la fe y en el amor,
a vivir con la Santísima Trinidad,
en lo más profundo de nuestro corazón.
Enséñanos, como tú,
a irradiar el amor de Dios a los hombres,
en nuestra vida de cada día,
para ser una alabanza de su Gloria.

Rezar lentamente: Padre Nuestro…

y tres veces Gloria al Padre, al Hijo y al Espíritu Santo…

 

Pauv petite creature 21may18
David Bohnsack, mccj / Facebook (Used by permission)

 

Para conocer más sobre Santa Isabel de la Trinidad haga clic aquí

St. Elizabeth of the Trinity Novena – Day 7

I need also, Father, to ask for your prayer, that I may be wholly faithful

Intention

For an increase in the fruit of faithfulness

St. Paul speaks

We know that in all things God works for good with those who love him, those whom he has called according to his purpose. Those whom God had already chosen he also set apart to become like his Son, so that the Son would be the first among many believers. And so those whom God set apart, he called; and those he called, he put right with himself, and he shared his glory with them. (Romans 15:13-14)

Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity speaks

I really think that next year I will celebrate your feast with Saint Dominic in “the inheritance of the saints in light”; this year, I am recollecting myself once again in the heaven of my soul to celebrate a very private feast day with you, and I need to tell you that; I need also, Father, to ask for your prayer, that I may be wholly faithful, wholly attentive, and may ascend my Calvary as a bride of the Crucified. “Those whom God foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Divine Son.” (Letter 304 to Père Vallée, 2 August 1906) 

Meditation 

With all that we know of Saint Elizabeth by now—the testimonies to her holiness—is it any wonder that three months before her death she is begging a priest to pray for her faithfulness? She surely senses that there is a steep, uphill climb ahead of her when she writes about her ascent of “Calvary as a bride of the Crucified.” Our own crosses and our own Calvaries may not be so extreme as hers, but isn’t our need for prayer to grow in the fruit of faithfulness just as essential? Where are some specific points in our spiritual lives where we need to grow in faithfulness to God?

NOVENA PRAYER 

O Saint Elizabeth!
In your great love of God,
You were always so close
to your friends’ needs.
Now, in Heaven,
Face to face with the Lord,
Do intervene near Him
for the needs we recommend to you.

(Make your request)

Teach us how to abide,
in Love and Faith,
with the Holy Trinity
in the utmost of our heart.
Teach us how to radiate God’s Love
amongst men, in our everyday life
just as you did yourself,
so that we may be a praise of God’s glory.

Our Father… (pray slowly, contemplating the meaning of the prayer)

Glory be… (three times, in praise of the indwelling Trinity)

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Sue Cro / Flickr

 

 

Elizabeth of the Trinity, S 2003, The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel, translated from the French by Nash, A, ICS Publications, Washington DC

Novena a Santa Isabel de la Trinidad — Día 7

Oh, Fuego consumidor, Espíritu de amor, ‘venid sobre mí’

San Pablo nos habla

Según la gracia que Dios me ha dado, yo, como maestro constructor, eché los cimientos, y otro construye sobre ellos. Pero cada uno tenga cuidado de cómo construye, porque nadie puede poner un fundamento diferente del que ya está puesto, que es Jesucristo. Si alguien construye sobre este fundamento, ya sea con oro, plata y piedras preciosas, o con madera, heno y paja, su obra se mostrará tal cual es, pues el día del juicio la dejará al descubierto. El fuego la dará a conocer, y pondrá a prueba la calidad del trabajo de cada uno. Si lo que alguien ha construido permanece, recibirá su recompensa, pero, si su obra es consumida por las llamas, él sufrirá pérdida. Será salvo, pero como quien pasa por el fuego. (1 Cor 3,10-15)

La Elevación de Santa Isabel

“Oh, Fuego consumidor, Espíritu de amor, ‘venid sobre mí’ para que se haga en mi alma como una encarnación del Verbo: que yo sea para Él una humanidad complementaria en la que renueve todo su Misterio. ”

Oración Final

¡Oh! Santa Isabel,
en tu gran amor a Dios,
estabas siempre tan próxima
de las necesidades de tus amigos.
Ahora, ya que estás en el Cielo
delante de la faz del Señor,
intercede cerca de El
en favor de las intenciones que te recomendamos.

Formular aquí su deseo

Enséñanos, en la fe y en el amor,
a vivir con la Santísima Trinidad,
en lo más profundo de nuestro corazón.
Enséñanos, como tú,
a irradiar el amor de Dios a los hombres,
en nuestra vida de cada día,
para ser una alabanza de su Gloria.

Rezar lentamente: Padre Nuestro…

y tres veces Gloria al Padre, al Hijo y al Espíritu Santo…

 

turning to ash LawrenceOP Flickr 33421533508_1828f78f09_o
Fr. Lawrence Lew, OP / Flickr

 

Para conocer más sobre Santa Isabel de la Trinidad haga clic aquí

Quote of the day: 5 November

Whatever the troubles and difficulties that weigh you down, bear them all patiently and keep in mind that these are the things which constitute your cross. Offer your help to the Lord and carry the cross with Him in gladness of heart. There is always something to be endured, and if you refuse one cross, be sure that you will meet with another, and maybe a heavier one. If we trust in God and rely on His help, we shall overcome the allurements of vice. We must never let our efforts flag nor our steps grow weary, but must keep our hearts under steady discipline.

Consider the afflictions and great trials which the holy Fathers endured in the desert. And yet the interior trials they suffered were far more intense than the physical penances they inflicted on their own bodies. One who is never tried acquires little virtue. Accept then whatever God wills to send, for any suffering He permits is entirely for our good.

Blessed Françoise d’Amboise

Foundress of the Carmelite nuns in France
From the Exhortations of Blessed Françoise to her nuns

 

Francoise dAmboise kneeling crowned sepia

St. Elizabeth of the Trinity Novena – Day 6

If you could see through the grilles the goodness lavished on me

Intention

For an increase in the fruit of goodness

St. Paul speaks

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. I myself am satisfied about you, my brethren, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, and able to instruct one another. (Romans 15:13-14)

Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity speaks

If you knew how well cared for I am in my dear Carmel, what a Mother I have unceasingly near me… She is a true mama for her little patient. You would have tears in your eyes if you could see through the grilles the goodness lavished on me by this heart whom God has made so motherly.
(Letter 326 to Madame Farrat, around 18 October 1906) 

Meditation 

“It takes one to know one,” we often say. This holds true for St. Elizabeth of the Trinity and the many times that she wrote about the goodness of her community during her illness. In her letters to her own mother, Elizabeth repeatedly reassured her mother of the exquisite charity of her prioress: “our good Mother takes such good care of me.” That is just an example of Elizabeth’s own goodness, wherein she continually praises the goodness in those around her. Being filled with goodness is a fruit of our growing relationship with God, who, as Jesus told the rich young man, is the ultimate in goodness: “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone” (Mk 10:18). 

NOVENA PRAYER 

O Saint Elizabeth!
In your great love of God,
You were always so close
to your friends’ needs.
Now, in Heaven,
Face to face with the Lord,
Do intervene near Him
for the needs we recommend to you.

(Make your request)

Teach us how to abide,
in Love and Faith,
with the Holy Trinity
in the utmost of our heart.
Teach us how to radiate God’s Love
amongst men, in our everyday life
just as you did yourself,
so that we may be a praise of God’s glory.

Our Father… (pray slowly, contemplating the meaning of the prayer)

Glory be… (three times, in praise of the indwelling Trinity)

 

angel peasap Flickr 471837691_f0783ee559_o
peasap / Flickr

 

 

Elizabeth of the Trinity, S 2003, The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel, translated from the French by Nash, A, ICS Publications, Washington DC

Novena a Santa Isabel de la Trinidad — Día 6

Oh, mi Astro amado, fascinadme

San Pablo nos habla

Vivan como hijos de luz (el fruto de la luz consiste en toda bondad, justicia y verdad) y comprueben lo que agrada al Señor. No tengan nada que ver con las obras infructuosas de la oscuridad, sino más bien denúncienlas, porque da vergüenza aun mencionar lo que los desobedientes hacen en secreto. Pero todo lo que la luz pone al descubierto se hace visible, porque la luz es lo que hace que todo sea visible. Por eso se dice:

«Despiértate, tú que duermes,
levántate de entre los muertos,
y te alumbrará Cristo».
(Ef 5,8-14)

La Elevación de Santa Isabel

“Luego, a través de todas las noches, de todos los vacíos, de todas las impotencias, quiero fijaros siempre y permanecer bajo vuestra gran luz. Oh, mi Astro amado, fascinadme para que no pueda ya salir de vuestra irradiación.”

Oración Final

¡Oh! Santa Isabel,
en tu gran amor a Dios,
estabas siempre tan próxima
de las necesidades de tus amigos.
Ahora, ya que estás en el Cielo
delante de la faz del Señor,
intercede cerca de El
en favor de las intenciones que te recomendamos.

Formular aquí su deseo

Enséñanos, en la fe y en el amor,
a vivir con la Santísima Trinidad,
en lo más profundo de nuestro corazón.
Enséñanos, como tú,
a irradiar el amor de Dios a los hombres,
en nuestra vida de cada día,
para ser una alabanza de su Gloria.

Rezar lentamente: Padre Nuestro…

y tres veces Gloria al Padre, al Hijo y al Espíritu Santo…

 

A Beautiful Whorl
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center / Flickr

 

Para conocer más sobre Santa Isabel de la Trinidad haga clic aquí

Quote of the day: 4 November

Celebration of the Word
in Honor of St. John of the Cross
Homily of St. John Paul II (excerpts)

 


Brothers and sisters: in my own words I wanted to pay a tribute of gratitude to Saint John of the Cross, theologian and mystic, poet and artist, a “heavenly and divine man”— as Saint Teresa of Jesus called him—a friend of the poor and a wise spiritual director of souls. He is the father and spiritual teacher of the entire Teresian Carmel, the forger of that living faith that shines in the most eminent children of Carmel: Thérèse of Lisieux, Elizabeth of the Trinity, Rafael Kalinowski, Edith Stein.

I ask the daughters of John of the Cross, the Discalced Carmelite nuns: may you know how to live the contemplative essence of that pure love that is eminently fruitful for the Church (cf. Spiritual Canticle, 29, 2-3). I recommend to his sons, the Discalced Carmelite friars, faithful guardians of this convent, who operate the Spirituality Center dedicated to the Saint, fidelity to his doctrine and dedication to the spiritual direction of souls, as well as to the study and deepening of spiritual theology.

For all the children of Spain and this noble land of Segovia, as a guarantee of ecclesial revitalization, I leave these beautiful slogans of Saint John of the Cross that have universal appeal: clairvoyance in intelligence to live the faith: “One human thought alone is worth more than the entire world, hence God alone is worthy of it.”(Sayings of light and love, 35). Courage in the will to exercise charity: “where there is no love, put love, and you will draw out love” (Letter 26, to M. María de la Encarnación). A solid and enthusiastic faith, that constantly moves us truly to love God and man; because at the end of life, “when evening comes, you will be examined in love” (Sayings of light and love, 60).

 

Segovia_-_Convento_de_los_Carmelitas_Descalzos,_Capilla_de_San_Juan_de_la_Cruz,_Sepulcro_del_santo_1
Tomb of St. John of the Cross | Zarateman / Wikimedia Commons

 

Read the original text of Saint John Paul II’s homily here

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

St. Elizabeth of the Trinity Novena – Day 5

Although I possess nothing, I nevertheless appoint as my sole heir…

Intention

For an increase in the fruit of kindness

St. Paul speaks

Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7)

Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity speaks

I the undersigned declare that although I possess nothing, since I have previously disposed of everything that belonged to me, I nevertheless appoint as my sole heir Madame la comtesse Georges de Sourdon, resident of Dijon.
Elizabeth Catez
30 October 1906
(Letter 338 to Madame de Sourdon, 30 October 1906)

Meditation 

St. Elizabeth’s biographer, the Discalced Carmelite scholar Fr. Conrad De Meester, O.C.D., notes that “what at first glance looks like an official will, in reality, constitutes a true message of friendship… an astounding gesture of kindness and even of gaiety in this totally exhausted young woman, who is going to collapse that every evening and die ten days later.” Elizabeth doesn’t write about kindness; she simply was kindness personified. If God, who is Love, dwells within us, then kindness dwells within us and overflows to those around us. Shouldn’t that be the model for our lives?

NOVENA PRAYER 

O Saint Elisabeth!
In your great love of God,
You were always so close
to your friends’ needs.
Now, in Heaven,
Face to face with the Lord,
Do intervene near Him
for the needs we recommend to you.

(Make your request)

Teach us how to abide,
in Love and Faith,
with the Holy Trinity
in the utmost of our heart.
Teach us how to radiate God’s Love
amongst men, in our everyday life
just as you did yourself,
so that we may be a praise of God’s glory.

Our Father… (pray slowly, contemplating the meaning of the prayer)

Glory be… (three times, in praise of the indwelling Trinity)

 

Spiti 2010 359 kanglapass Flickr 4908057875_b66a2c458c_o
kanglapass / Flickr

 

 

Elizabeth of the Trinity, S 2003, The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel, translated from the French by Nash, A, ICS Publications, Washington DC

Novena a Santa Isabel de la Trinidad — Día 5

Oh, Verbo eterno, Palabra de mi Dios, quiero pasar mi vida escuchándoos

San Pablo nos habla

Nosotros, por nuestra parte, no cesamos de dar gracias a Dios, porque cuando recibieron la Palabra que les predicamos, ustedes la aceptaron no como palabra humana, sino como lo que es realmente, como Palabra de Dios, que actúa en ustedes, los que creen.
(1 Tes 2,13)

La Elevación de Santa Isabel

“Oh, Verbo eterno, Palabra de mi Dios, quiero pasar mi vida escuchándoos, quiero hacerme toda dócil a fin de aprenderlo todo de Vos.”

Oración Final

¡Oh! Santa Isabel,
en tu gran amor a Dios,
estabas siempre tan próxima
de las necesidades de tus amigos.
Ahora, ya que estás en el Cielo
delante de la faz del Señor,
intercede cerca de El
en favor de las intenciones que te recomendamos.

Formular aquí su deseo

Enséñanos, en la fe y en el amor,
a vivir con la Santísima Trinidad,
en lo más profundo de nuestro corazón.
Enséñanos, como tú,
a irradiar el amor de Dios a los hombres,
en nuestra vida de cada día,
para ser una alabanza de su Gloria.

Rezar lentamente: Padre Nuestro…

y tres veces Gloria al Padre, al Hijo y al Espíritu Santo…

 

listen alper tecer Flickr 4103986832_05c5e80997_o
Alper Tecer / Flickr

 

Para conocer más sobre Santa Isabel de la Trinidad haga clic aquí

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