Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Novena for Iraq: Day SIX

Sixth Intention: RIGHT BALANCE

Immaculate Mother of God, conceived without Original Sin, never touched by the slightest stain of sin, "tainted nature's solitary boast," we the beloved of thy Immaculate Heart come to thee on this sixth day of this Novena to pray for the grace of right balance.

O Spotless Virgin-Mother, Mother of God and our Mother by grace, obtain for us right balance as a foundation of candor, or tranquility, of clearness and holiness. may there be no duplicity in our thoughts and actions. Obtain for us a right balance in the order of our interior life, O Immaculate Heart of Mary, according to the well-ordered interior life thou lived in the perfection of holiness when thou lived on earth. Lead us to grown in holiness with a balance of spirituality so that our wills here below are in harmony with the Kingdom of God in heaven, where thou, as Queen and Mother reign with Jesus Christ thy Son Who is our King, and our Lord. May we avoid all extremes, as thou did, O Mother of God the Son, Daughter of God the Father, and Spouse of the Holy Spirit. Thou were subject to thy loving husband St. Joseph and to the laws of God. May we never be more Catholic than the Church, nor less Catholic than this same Holy Church thy Son Jesus Christ founded. May we seek to live a Catholic life and follow the teachings of the Church in faith and morals without compromise in a harmonious balance. May there be no conflict between what we believe and what we do. May we not demand of others what we decline to practice ourselves. May we never compromise right principles by subtle reasoning. May our speech be "Yes" when we mean "Yes" and "No" when we mean "No." - Mt. 5:37

Obtain for us by thy powerful intercession, O Holy Mediatrix of all Graces, a right balance in living the spirit of poverty, chastity and obedience according to our state in life, so that the wiles of Satan never succeed in getting us to succumb to the spirit of the world, the weakness of the flesh, or the pride of life. Send forth thy Holy Angels, O Queen of Angels, Cause of our Joy, Mother of Mercy. Intercede that we be open to the glorious Spirits of Heaven who are powerful to bring right order in our lives. Amen.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Novena for Iraq: Day FIVE

Fifth Intention: SILENCE 

Immaculate Mother of God, our Mother by grace, we the beloved of thy Immaculate Heart come to thee on this fifth day of this Novena to pray for the grace of silence. 

Blessed Mother Mary, Queen of Peace, exalted above all Angels and Saints, thou partakes in the Heavenly glory of the Beatific Vision of the Blessed trinity; thou sees God "face to face" even as He Is. 
- 1 Cor. 13:12 
Obtain for us the grace that everything we speak may be spoken in love and every silence we keep is kept, not in anger, obstinacy, vengefulness or deceitfulness, but in the sacredness that opens hearts to God's Word. As thou pondered the Word of God in thy Immaculate Heart, O Ever-Virgin Mother of God and Mother of men, obtain for us the grace of silence so that we are not bound to the distractions of the world. Rather, emptied of the world, we desire to be filled with the treasures of Divine Grace. It is in holy silence that we can comprehend Divine treasures and the secrets of the King's Sacred Heart. 

Good St. Joseph, Foster Father of Jesus Christ and true husband of Mary, thou loved silence upon earth. The Bible does not record a word thou spoke. Yet, in thy silence, thou had the holiest state in life next to Jesus and Mary. By intercession in union with thy sweet spouse, obtain for us, O Glorious St. Joseph, the grace to imitate both interiorly and exteriorly the spirit of thy silence. 

O Holy Family, Jesus, Mary and Joseph, in imitation of the silence which reigned in thy home, empty us of worldly noise and distractions so as to hear the voice of the Lord more clearly. Open our hearts to the work of the Holy Angels, who will lead us to faith in and love for the Most Blessed Trinity, the Word made flesh, the Church as the Mystical Body of Jesus and to the highest veneration of God's Mother, the Mother of the Church. May the spirit of materialism never more touch our lives, Heavenly Mother. Help us to be detached from the things of this world, opened in silence to the magnificent melodies of the supernatural. Where our hearts are, there also is our treasure. In the silence of our hearts, "Speak Lord, for thy servant is listening." - 1 Sam. 3:9.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Novena for Iraq: Day FOUR

Fourth Intention: CHARITY
Immaculate Mother of God, our Mother by grace, we the beloved of thy Immaculate Heart come to thee on this fourth day of this Novena to pray for the grace of the holy virtue of charity.

Let rays of light from thy Immaculate Heart penetrate our souls with the love of God. Mary, Mother of Christ, Mother of Holy Love, form us according to the Heart of thy Son. His love of the Father and all mankind was so great that He lay down His life for us, even to death on the Cross. Obtain for us the grace of the infused supernatural virtue by which we love God above all things for His own sake, and love others for the sake of God. In devotion to thy Immaculate Heart, O Mary, we will acquire the virtue of supernatural charity by the Divine power of charity infused into our souls together with sanctifying grace.

St. John, Apostle of Love, who received the Mother of Love into thine home and thereby into thy heart according to the word of Jesus Christ from the Cross, we look to thy intercession to obtain for us knowledge of God Who is Love so that we may abide in God, and God in us. Mary, Souse of the Holy Ghost, it is through thy powerful intercession that the Holy Spirit sanctifies souls and enables us to say "Lord Jesus" in faith and love. Invoke, O Immaculate Heart of Mary, the Spirit of Divine Love to fill us with ever grater love of Jesus Christ and of the Father. Teach us to have faith as thou had faith upon earth and to love as thou lovest. Share even now the flames of the intense love which radiates from thy Heart. Enkindle in us the fire of the Holy Spirit. Help us to serve the Church lovingly and faithfully. In a world grown cold to love, a world divided, unite us through the power of thy prayers, O Immaculate Mother of Love, into one fold under one Shepherd. In drawing us to Jesus, possess our souls, our very lives. Enlighten our every thought, word and deed, so that our lives reflect thy own.

As Our Lady of the Holy Eucharist, illuminate and purify us so that we may approach the Sacrament of Love to receive our loving Savior fruitfully to final glory. In this way, one day we will come, O Loving Mother of Grace, to be in Heaven both body and soul with Jesus as King and thou as Queen and Mother. Amen.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Spiritual Art

Since being hospitalised in March 2013 (after numerous issues, including brain-haemorrhage) I haven't been able to draw anywhere near as well as I did in the past. So I gave up - for a while anyways! I do love to draw, however, and have been doing it since I can remember!

Sacred Heart of Jesus
Spiritual pictures is something I have come to enjoy drawing, since I found God again nearly a decade ago. To me, I see it as a form of prayer. Praying doesn't have to be words - it's about communicating with God - so as I spend my minutes, hours, weeks or months even drawing a nice spiritual sort of image, I am really communicating with God. Which is why I decided, even though I may not be as good as I once was at drawing, if I enjoy it and it leads me to talk to God, I should continue to do it.

Funnily enough, as I draw one of my many spiritual pictures, I seem to be quite happy with the end result, as though my drawing skills have returned - sometimes improved. Trying to draw something else, something secular so to speak, is another story. It's like the Holy Spirit is making me draw these images, helping me improve, but only so long as its something that I would call a "prayerful piece".

These are a few pieces I have made in the past couple of months. Not the best quality as they are photographs as opposed to scanned-in images due to lack of owning a scanner at the moment... but you get the idea!
Immaculate Mary

Symbolic Sacred Heart of Jesus

Queen of Heaven

Sunday Snippets: #08

SUNDAY SNIPPETS: A Catholic Carnival. 

Week starting Sunday 19th Week in ORDINARY TIME

We are a group of Catholic bloggers who gather weekly to share our best posts with each other. 

I've written quite a few posts this week, guess you can say I'm back blogging more than ever.
Enjoy reading! All comments are greatly appreciated and welcomed!

Novena for Iraq: Day THREE

Third Intention: OBEDIENCE
Immaculate Mother of God, our Mother by grace, we the beloved of thy Immaculate Heart come to thee on this third day of this Novena to pray for the grace of obedience.

Obtain for us, O Holy Mother of God, the spirit of obedience found in responding to the grace of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in our souls. May we always realize that obedience comes from the desire to unite our wills with the Will of God.

O Spouse of the Holy Ghost, by thy intercession grant us the grace to be open to the ministrations of the Holy Spirit with us and to our Angels who influence us to think and act in harmony with the Divine Will. We desire to submit to all lawful authority, inwardly and outwardly, so as to avoid having those rebellious, dissenting attitudes, which cause the spirit of revenge in our hearts. By union with the Divine Will, with thy Immaculate Heart as guide, O Mother, we will obtain the true peace of the Holy Spirit and union with the Most Blessed Trinity.

Obtain for us, the beloved of thy Immaculate Heart, O Mother Mary, the grace of obedience to all lawful authorities which are in harmony with the laws of God and His Holy Church. In this way, the grace of humility for which we pray will accompany the doing of God's Will and all of the commands we obey will turn out for the greater glory of God and the salvation of souls.

Intercede, O Glorious Mother, that we may always remember that obedience as a virtue is pleasing to God because it means the sacrifice of our wills out of love for God. May our spirit imitate thine, O Holy Mother, when you answered God's Angel: "Behold the handmaid of the Lord; may it be done to me according to Thy word." - Luke 1:38

Grant us, O Loving Heart of Mary, the grace of rendering a special respect and undivided obedience to our Holy Father, the Pope and to bishops who speak and teach in union with him as Vicar of Christ on earth. By always being obedient, may we, with the refuge of thy Immaculate Heart, live in uprightness as in the discipline of a well-ordered army, for the sake of Jesus Christ and His Holy Church. Amen.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Power of the Devil

Many people will laugh at me when I say this, but do read on - Satan and his minions are real, not imaginary. All the issues going on in the world at the moment, also the ones that have been going on for quite some time now, some before I was even born. We are living in a very faithless, thus Godless, age. There are many people who have faith, many who "pretend" to have faith or have an obscure belief to "something of this world" and an increasing majority of those who simply have no faith and don't seem to want it, rejecting every opportunity as it arises.

Wars in the Holy Land; genocide and persecution of religious minorities in Iraq and Syria. Legalisation of abortions and euthanasia in Western countries; U.S.A's first public Satanic Mass. These are all under Satan's power! But none of these are his worst of powers, affecting people without faith, as well as many with faith, making you believe he doesn't even exist. He is simply an archaic creation of religious institutes in order to keep us for being evil. Nothing could be further from the truth.

I felt his power yesterday, and nearly gave into it. Since I've been reading more spiritual books, attending Mass more often and gradually trying to change my sinful ways, Satan doesn't like that, and will try to stop me reuniting with my Heavenly Father. Yesterday was the Feast of the Assumption of Our Lady, which is one of two Holy Days of Obligation in Australia - very important, for obvious reasons! I have known the Mass times for more than a week and planned to make the half-hour walk to my favourite local church for the event.

However, when I woke up in the morning, I was simply too tired. Felt like I hadn't slept properly. I got out of bed, came to the lounge room to start getting ready for my day... but just couldn't. So I curled up on the couch and when to sleep again. I woke up several times, checked the time, then kept on going back to sleep.

By the time I finally got up, made a coffee and told myself to get ready, it was quite late in the morning. I almost shrugged it off, telling myself I'd go to Mass on Sunday, don't worry about it! But with all the things I've been reading of late, many little dots have reconnected in my mind, and I realised this was all the power of the Devil!

Our Lady is Satan's greatest enemy, other than God Himself, so wanting me to be excessively tired that I would shrug off the greatest Feast Day of Our Lady is just what he wanted! He will employ the same techniques whenever I go to pray the Rosary or some other powerful praying technique!

Looking at the time, I realised I had better jump in the shower and get ready - FAST! Ive done it all too often in the past, where the smallest excuse would be the reason I don't go to Mass. Some days its too wet, other days too hot. Today was simply because I was tired when I really shouldn't have been! Getting ready as quick as possible, I had to then keep telling myself if I am late to Mass, whilst not preferably, I'm sure it's not any where near as bad as missing the whole celebration!

I left my house and walked into town, listening to some Holy music to get myself more in the spirit of the day and I made it to church with about one-minute before it actually started! I was quite hot as it was quite a Spring-type of day, but at least I made it. Everything after that was fine, my day ran quite smoothly and went to plan, making the most of such a Holy Day calling into the Catholic store next door for the second time in two-weeks. I didn't have a lot of money, but I thought I'm much better off spending it on things that will help my Spirit, as opposed to things that will slowly kill my Spirit.