Thursday, July 27, 2017

Prayer for all Things Necessary to Salvation

Prayer for all things necessary to Salvation
BY POPE CLEMENT XI

 

O my God, I believe in Thee; do Thou strengthen my faith.  All my hopes are in Thee; do Thou secure them.  I love Thee with my whole heart; teach me to love Thee daily more and more.  I am sorry that I have offended Thee; do Thou increase my sorrow.

I adore Thee as my first beginning; I aspire after Thee as my last end.  I give Thee thanks as my constant benefactor; I call upon Thee as my sovereign protector.

Vouchsafe, O my God, to conduct me by Thy Wisdom, to restrain me by Thy Justice, to comfort me by Thy Mercy, to defend me by Thy Power.

To Thee I desire to consecrate all my thoughts, all my words, all my actions, and all my sufferings; that henceforward I may think only of Thee, speak only of Thee, refer all my actions to Thy greater glory, and suffer willingly whatever Thou shalt appoint.

Lord, I desire that in all things Thy Will may be done, because it is Thy Will, and in the manner that Thou willest.

I beg of Thee to enlighten my understanding, to inflame my heart, to purify my body, and to sanctify my soul.

Give me strength, O my God, to expiate my offenses, to overcome my temptations, to subdue my passions, and to acquire the virtues proper to my state.

Fill my heart with tender affection for Thy Goodness, hatred of my faults, love of my neighbor, and contempt of the world.

Let me always remember to be submissive to my superiors, condescending to my inferiors, faithful to my friends, and charitable to my enemies.

Assist me to overcome sensuality by mortification, avarice by alms-deeds, anger by meekness, and tepidity by devotion.

O my God, make me prudent in my undertakings, courageous in dangers, patient in affliction, and humble in prosperity.

Grant that I may be ever attentive at my prayers, temperate at my meals, diligent at my employments, and constant in my resolutions.

Let my conscience be ever upright and pure, my exterior modest, my conversation edifying, and my comportment regular.

Assist me that I may continually labor to overcome nature, to correspond with Thy Grace, to keep Thy commandments, and to work out my Salvation.

Discover to me, O my God, the nothingness of this world, the greatness of Heaven, the shortness of time, and the length of eternity.

Grant, O Lord,  that I may prepare for death, that I may fear Thy Judgments, that I may escape Hell, and in the end obtain Heaven; through Jesus Christ, my Lord.  Amen.
 

 
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Monday, July 24, 2017

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Spanish Cardinal - Pedro Crisólogo Segura y Sáenz

Below are pictures and some information about the great Spanish Cardinal: His Most Rev. Eminence Pedro Crisólogo Segura y Sáenz. Born on 4 December 1880; he died on 8 April 1957. He served as Archbishop of Toledo from 1927 to 1931, and Archbishop of Seville from 1937 until his death.
 
“A man of integral character, of a traditionalist (ultraconservative) position, and of a medieval intolerance.”
 
(He thought that Franco's government was too soft on non-Catholic sects and criticized the government for trying to declare all religions as equal).
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“A man of great rectitude, strong character, an intransigent Catholic, opposed to fascism and without diplomatic tact, it is said that ‘he only bowed down before the Pope.’”
 
“Hombre de gran rectitud, fuerte carácter, católico intransigente, opuesto al fascismo y sin tacto diplomático, se ha dicho de él que ‘solo inclinó su frente ante el Papa.’"
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He embarrassed Franco a couple of times. On one occasion, at a special dinner at which Franco, his wife, and Cardinal Segura were invited, Franco, as the head of State, occupied the first place. The second place, however, was given to Franco's wife, and not to Cardinal Segura. The Cardinal demanded that the second place be given to him, as is proper, because he is a Cardinal of the Roman Church, and he would only give up that second place to Franco's wife if she were a queen or the heir to the throne, which she was not. 
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“Undoubtedly, he was a man of virtue, very pious –organizer of missions—but very fanatic, hard-headed, and with positions that gave the Republic—and Rome—headaches.”
 
He gave Franco headaches by maintaining the rigid (iron-like) intolerance of a medieval Bishop in the ruling of his diocese (he did not allow Franco to enter churches --or go in procession-- under a canopy because he was not the king) by proscribing unnecessary pass-times, forbidding services in towns where inappropriate dances (too close to each other) were permitted, and by demanding a strict asceticism.
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Because Cardinal Segura wanted and believed in a theocracy (the Catholic Faith being the one the State accepts and confesses), he was usually referred to as “un Bonifacio VIII a la Española” (the Spanish Boniface VIII).  
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(Above and below) Procession of the Most Blessed Sacrament.
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Picture of Cardinal Segura being expelled from Spain by the government for his public and very outspoken criticisms of Franco's regime.
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Chicago Tribue reported on May 8, 1931 – “The Spanish republic tonight asked for the scalp of the primate of Spain, Pedro Cardinal Segura, archbishop of Toledo.” “… and he must be recalled ‘urgently,’ the minister of justice said.” All that simply because Cardinal Segura called for the election of deputies who will “defend and guarantee the rights of the Church.”
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Cardinal Segura in 1954.
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He was exiled a couple of times; He did not see eye to eye with the Republican government since he wanted a theocracy; he did not see eye to eye with Franco and his dictatorship - he opposed the privilege of the Canopy for Franco; he did not see eye to eye with all the Bishops/Cardinals in Spain because they did not always actively opposed errors and injustices; he did not see eye to eye with everyone in the Roman Curia. He did not like Protestantism either, and he was friends with Alfonso XIII.
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Notice the WHITE Vestments (even though black is the color for Requiem Masses and services) used for the funeral! It is (or was) an ancient custom to use white vestments for the funeral offices for the Archbishops of Sevilla. (One cannot argue with tradition!).
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Funeral procession
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He was very devoted to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.    
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What a Prelate!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The Sacrament of Baptism


"Baptism: The Sacrament of regeneration by water in the word."
~The Catechism of the Council of Trent.

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"The faithful are earnestly to be exhorted to take care that their children be brought to the church, as soon as it can be done with safety, to receive solemn Baptism. Since infant children have no other means of salvation except Baptism, we may easily understand how grievously those persons sin who permit them to remain without the grace of the Sacrament longer than necessity may require, particularly at an age so tender as to be exposed to numberless dangers of death."
~The Catechism of the Council of Trent.
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"With regard to those of adult age who enjoy the perfect use of reason ... [T]o them the Christian faith is to be proposed; and they are earnestly to be exhorted, persuaded, and invited to embrace it. ... Besides, the longer they defer Baptism, the longer are they deprived of the use and graces of the other Sacraments, by which the Christian religion is practised, since the other Sacraments are accessible through Baptism only."
~The Catechism of the Council of Trent.
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"In order that grown-up persons having the use of reason may receive this Sacrament worthily and profitably, they must believe and profess their belief in the necessary Articles of the Christian Faith -- they must have trust in the mercy and merits of Christ, and be sorry for their sins; being assisted in so doing by actual grace, which grace God grants to every one and without which no one can move a single step towards heaven."
~The Glories of the Catholic Church, Vol. I, pg. 88.
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"Baptism is a Sacrament absolutely necessary for all, without which no one can enter into the kingdom of God, for Jesus Christ has said: 'Amen, amen, I say to thee, unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.'"
~The Glories of the Catholic Church, Vol. I, pg. 87.
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"First Effect of Baptism: The remission of sin
Second Effect of Baptism: Remission of all punishment due to sin
Third Effect of Baptism: Grace of regeneration
Fourth Effect of Baptism: Infused virtues and incorporation with Christ
Fifth Effect of Baptism: Character of Christian
Sixth Effect of Baptism: Opening the gates of Heaven."
~ The Catechism of the Council of Trent 
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"It is manifest that ceremonies contribute to the more religious and holy administration of the Sacraments  and serve to place, as it were, before the eyes the exalted and inestimable gifts which they contain, and impress on the minds of the faithful a deeper sense of the boundless beneficence of God."
~The Catechism of the Council of Trent
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"As infants are made heirs to earthly property before they are capable of consenting to receive it, so also in holy Baptism infants are made heirs of heaven before they are capable of consenting to be baptized; their consent in both cases is justly presumed." 
~The Glories of the Catholic Church, Vol. I, pg. 88.
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[In Spain, these little "arms" were used to put blessed salt in the mouth of the babies being baptized]
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"Finally, a name is given [to] the person baptized. It should be taken from some person whose eminent sanctity has given him a place in the catalogue of the Saints. The similarity of names will stimulate each one to imitate the virtues and holiness of the Saint, and, moreover, to hope and pray that he who is the model for his imitation will also be his advocate and watch over the safety of his body and soul." 
~The Catechism of the Council of Trent.
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[Offering of newly-born babies to the protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary -- a very Hispanic custom, which is done much less frequently and much less solemnly these days]
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Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Pope Pius IX -- Our Favorite Supreme (Roman) Pontiff!

BL. POPE PIUS IX
REIGNED FROM 1846 UNTIL 1878
(32 years!)
 
“There have been great and illustrious pontificates in the history of the Church, pontificates that stand prominently forth by the personal holiness of the Pope and the great works he accomplished for the Church of God, or the great sufferings he underwent in her defense. These pontificates mark distinct epochs in ecclesiastical history; and with them posterity will range the remarkable reign of Pius IX.
 
The length of years during which Divine Providence has sustained him in his eminent position; the personal sanctity which breathes forth in all his actions; the zeal with which he has met the spirit of an unbelieving age, that seeks to destroy alike the organization and the faith of the Church; the defining of an article of faith called for by the piety of a world, the convoking of a general council, the heroism and serenity displayed amid the vicissitudes and misfortunes that have chequered his career; exile, spoliation, imprisonment; a great heart afflicted by the sight of the evils visited on those who adhered to him and to the cause of God; all these conspire to invest Pius IX and his pontificate with a halo peculiarly his own.”
~The Life of Pius IX
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"He hath seen the years of Peter"
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The next morning [of the conclave] he was appointed to open the ballots. As he did so he saw his own name on almost every paper that he unfolded. He could not complete the task. In a voice broken by emotion, he exclaimed: 'Brethren, spare me, take pity on my weakness, I am unworthy.'
 
The scrutiny completed at last showed that he had received the requisite number of votes. A Pope had been elected before a single ambassador, notified by his sovereign, had approached the window. The scrutators declared his name, the master of ceremonies and the secretary summoned by the junior cardinal deacon entered.
 
Cardinal Mastai knelt to adore God Who had brought him face to face with an awful responsibility for His own glory. The cardinals, a moment before his equals, withdrew, leaving him alone with God. When he arose, Cardinal Macchi, the subdean, with two others, advanced before him and asked whether he accepted the election. Deeply moved, the newly elected Pope answered that he submitted to the will of God. Then the baldachinos were taken down from above the seats of all the other cardinals, and the cardinals who had sat on either side of him withdrew. When Cardinal Macchi asked him what name he intended to take, the words "Pius IX" were uttered for the first time.
~The Life of Pius IX
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Pius IX granting the custody of the image of Our Lady of Perpetual Help to the Redemptorist Order 
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“Two cardinal deacons then [after his election] conducted him behind the high altar, where he assumed the pontifical habit, and then in front of the altar he received the homage of the cardinals, and the ring of the fisherman was placed on his hand. After this the first cardinal deacon, while the choir sang Ecce sacerdos magnus, went out on the balcony over the entrance to the palace and proclaimed the election to the people, who had already gathered there.
 
‘I announce to you a great joy,’ he said. ‘We have as Pope the most eminent and the most Reverend John Mary, Cardinal of the Roman Church, Mastai Ferretti, who has taken the name of Pius IX.’
 
Loud shouts of joy rose up from the people, the cannon of the castle of St. Angelo thundered forth, the bells of Rome rang out a peal of joy, and a general holiday ensued.”
~The Life of Pius IX
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"We declare, pronounce, and define that the doctrine which holds that the Blessed Virgin Mary, at the first instant of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace of Almighty God, in virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of mankind, was preserved immaculate from all stain of original sin, has been revealed by God, and therefore should firmly and constantly be believed by all the faithful. Wherefore, if any shall dare, which God avert, to think otherwise than as it has been defined by us, let them know and understand that they are condemned by their own judgment, that they have suffered shipwreck of the faith, and have revolted from the unity of the Church."
~The Life of Pius IX
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First Vatican Council
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Pius IX giving the Papal Blessing from the balcony, which he stopped doing after the sacrilegious theft of the Patrimony of St. Peter (a.k.a. the Papal States) when he declared himself a "prisoner" in the Vatican. 
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Chair given to Pius IX (his coat of arms can be seen at the top, a little below the papal tiara). The main depiction is of Our Lord Jesus Christ handing the keys of the kingdom to St. Peter.
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Pius IX celebrating the solemn Papal Mass.
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Pius IX in prayer -- one of the most popular depictions of this truly merciful, humble, and holy Pope.
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Pius IX entering St. Peter's Basilica in procession.
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Obsequies for Pius IX
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“To the Clergy and People of Rome:
Raphael, of the title of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme, Cardinal-Priest of the Holy Roman Church, Monaco la Valetta, Vicar-General, Judge Ordinary of Rome and its districts, and Abbot Commendatory of Subiaco.

The majesty of the omnipotent God has recalled to himself the sovereign pontiff Pius IX, of blessed memory, according to the sad news just imparted to us by the most eminent Camerlengo of the Holy Roman Church, to whom it belongs to make known to the public the death of the Roman pontiffs. At such an announcement, the Catholic people in every part of the world, devoted to the great and apostolic virtues of the immortal pontiff and his sovereign magnanimity, will weep. But, above all, are we most supremely sorrowful; we, O Romans! Since today has unhappily terminated the most extraordinary and glorious pontificate which God has ever conceded to his vicars upon earth.
 
His life as pontiff and as sovereign was a series of widespread benefits as well in the spiritual as in the temporal order, diffused over all the churches and nations, and in a most particular manner upon his Rome, where at every step monuments of the munificence of the lamented pontiff and father are met with.
 
In accordance with the sacred canons, in all the cities and important places solemn obsequies and suffrages for the soul of the departed pontiff should be made until the Holy Apostolic See be provided with a new head, and prayers should be made to the Divine Majesty for the speedy election of a successor to the deceased, whom we can never sufficiently lament."
Given from our residence, the 7th of February, 1878.
R. Card. Monaco, Vicar
Placido can. Petacci, Secretary
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So far as ceremonial was concerned, nothing could be more gorgeous than the services at St. Peter’s as conducted by Pope Pius IX. For such duties no one could be better fitted; for he was handsome, kindly, and dignified, with a beautiful, ringing voice… At the close of the service, the Pope, being borne on his throne by Roman nobles, surrounded by Cardinals and Princes, and wearing the triple crown, gave his blessing to the city and to the world. There must have been over ten thousands of us in the piazza to receive it, and no one could have performed his part more perfectly.
~Andrew Dickson White