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The Catholic Defender: Day 6 – Novena to the Precious Blood of Jesus

Day 6 – Novena to the Precious Blood of Jesus

The month of July is dedicated to the Precious Blood. The feast of the Precious Blood of our Lord was instituted in 1849 by Pius IX, but the devotion is as old as Christianity. The early Fathers say that the Church was born from the pierced side of Christ, and that the sacraments were brought forth through His Blood.

“Almighty Father, I place the Precious Blood of Jesus before my lips before I pray, that my prayers may be purified before they ascend to Your divine altar.” – St. Mary Magdalen de Pazzi

The “Constant” Prayer of St. Catherine of Siena

“Precious Blood, ocean of divine mercy: Flow upon us! Precious Blood, most pure offering: Procure us every grace! Precious Blood, hope and refuge of sinners: Atone for us! Precious Blood, delight of holy souls: Draw us! Amen.”

Let us begin, In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

By the Voice of Thy Blood, O Jesus, I seek Thee, ask Thee and beg Thee, to help me at this time of my need.

O Jesus, I kneel at Thy bleeding feet pleading that you will hear me. Many graces and many mercies have come from Thy Blood. My hope lives in you, until the end of my time.

O Jesus, by Thy Precious Blood which you shed for our souls, by each drop that you shed for our redemption and by the tears of Thy Immaculate Mother, I beseech Thee and earnestly ask You to listen to my prayer:

(Mention your request here…)

O Jesus, who during all the days of Thy mortal life, You consoled so many sufferers, You healed so many infirmities, You raised so often a sinking courage; have pity on my soul who cries to Thee from the depths of my anguish.

O Jesus, from the wounds of Thy heart, may a wave of Thy merciful blood flow and grant to me the grace that I so ardently desire.

O Jesus, hasten the moment when You will change my tears to joy and my sighs to thanksgivings.

Holy Mary, I ask you to join with me in seeking help. But, God our Father in heaven, “May your will be done”. Amen.

Say 1: Our Father…Say 1: Hail Mary…Say 1: Glory Be…

Jesus, Crucified, Have Mercy on Me

Lord, have mercy.

Lord, have mercy.

Christ, have mercy.

Christ, have mercy on us.

Lord, have mercy.

Lord, have mercy.

Jesus, hear us.

Jesus, graciously hear us.

God, the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us.

God, the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.

God, the Holy Spirit, Have mercy on us.

Holy Trinity,

One God,

Have mercy on us.

Blood of Christ, only-begotten Son of the Eternal Father,

Save us. Blood of Christ, Incarnate Word of God,

Save us. Blood of Christ, of the New and Eternal Testament, Save us.

Blood of Christ, falling upon the earth in the Agony,

Save us. Blood of Christ, shed profusely in the Scourging,

Save us. Blood of Christ, flowing forth in the Crowning with Thorns,

Save us. Blood of Christ, Poured out on the Cross,

Save us. Blood of Christ, price of our salvation,

Save us. Blood of Christ, without which there is no forgiveness.

Save us. Blood of Christ, Eucharistic drink and refreshment of souls,

Save us. Blood of Christ, stream of mercy,

Save us. Blood of Christ, victor over demons

Save us. Blood of Christ, courage of Martyrs,

Save us. Blood of Christ, strength of Confessors,

Save us. Blood of Christ, bringing forth Virgins,

Save us. Blood of Christ, help of those in peril,

Save us. Blood of Christ, relief of the burdened,

Save us. Blood of Christ, solace in sorrow,

Save us .Blood of Christ, hope of the penitent,

Save us. Blood of Christ, consolation of the dying,

Save us. Blood of Christ, peace and tenderness of hearts,

Save us. Blood of Christ, pledge of eternal life,

Save us. Blood of Christ, freeing souls from purgatory,

Save us. Blood of Christ, most worthy of all glory and honor,

Save us. Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world,

Spare us, O Lord. Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world

Graciously hear us, O Lord.

Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us,

O Lord. You have redeemed us, O Lord, in your Blood. And made us, for our God, a kingdom.

Let us pray, - Almighty and eternal God, you have appointed your only-begotten Son the Redeemer of the world, and willed to be appeased by his Blood. Grant we beg of you, that we may worthily adore this price of our salvation, and through its power be safeguarded from the evils of the present life, so that we may rejoice in its fruits forever in heaven. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Would you be wise? Then listen to the words of Jesus in Matthew 4:17, “Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” And remember this as you go forward out of Paul’s words in Romans 12:2, “And be not conformed to this world; but be you transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may demonstrate what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

These inerrant words from Scripture are meant for all of us, but right now please pray for Cardinal Dolan of New York, that he will do the right thing standing up for the rights of Catholics in New York. It has been proposed instead of being the grand marshal of this years St. Patrick’s Day Parade that openly will offend Christians, that Cardinal Dolan to hold a Eucharistic Procession instead.

Although the following quotes by Cardinal Burke were meant about what needs to be done now for the education of our young, these words would be important for all Catholics.

Cardinal Burke: “We as Catholics have not properly combated the culture, because we have not been taught our Catholic Faith, especially in the depth needed to address these grave evils of our time. It is being addressed, but it needs much more radical attention.” “What has also contributed greatly to the situation is an exaltation of the virtue of tolerance which is falsely seen as the virtue which governs all other virtues. In other words, we should tolerate other people in their immoral actions (their sin) to the extent that we seem also to accept the moral wrong. Tolerance is a virtue, but it is certainly not the principal virtue, the principal virtue is charity.” “Charity means speaking the truth. I have encountered it [not speaking the truth] many times myself as a priest and bishop. It is something we simply need to address. There is far too much silence, people do not want to talk about it because the topic is not ‘politically correct.’ But we cannot be silent any longer.”

Before the Eucharistic Miracle. Having said all the above, I want to finish with a quote by St. Thomas Aquinas, that I hope when I die, will apply to my life. While he is talking about the Sacrament of the Eucharist, it is how I feel about the teachings of the Catholic Church I love and founded by the Lord Jesus whom I love. “If in this world there be any knowledge of this sacrament stronger than that of faith, I wish now to use it in affirming that I firmly believe and know as certain that Jesus Christ, True God and True Man, Son of God and Son of the Virgin Mary, is in this Sacrament…I receive Thee, the price of my redemption, for Whose love I have watched, studied, and laboured. Thee have I preached; Thee have I taught. Never have I said anything against Thee: if anything was not well said, that is to be attributed to my ignorance. Neither do I wish to be obstinate in my opinions, but if I have written anything erroneous concerning this sacrament or other matters, I Submit all to the judgment and correction of the Holy Roman Church, in whose obedience I now pass from this life.” St. Thomas Aquinas

The Most Precious Blood of Jesus, Weingarten, Germany 1055

This Eucharistic Miracle literally is taken from the foot of the cross. Saint Matthew the Evangelist, in describing the passion of the Lord Jesus Christ, says: “The centurion and the men with him who were keeping watch over Jesus feared greatly when they saw the earthquake and all that was happening, and they said, ‘Truly this was the Son of God!’” (Matthew 27:54).

St. Longinus was the Roman soldier who pierced the side of the Crucified Savior with a spear. He was the chief of the soldiers who were present at the Crucifixion of the Lord on Golgotha.

St. Longinus previously having been wounded in a past battle, he was blind in one eye. He was healed when he pierced the side of Jesus with his spear and some of the blood and water from Jesus fell into his eyes. Upon his healing, St. Longinus gives his profession of faith, “Truly this was the Son of God!” Recognizing the power of the Blood of Christ, gathered a portion of blood-soaked earth at the foot of the cross.

Having come to believe in the Savior, St. Longinus received Baptism from the apostles, and decided to leave military service. St Longinus secretly left Judea to preach about Jesus Christ the Son of God in his native land (Cappadocia), and two of his comrades followed him. He had always maintained the relic of the Blood of Christ taken from the foot of the cross.

St. Longinus had carried the relic of the Most Precious Blood of Christ to Mantua but in the process of time, was placed in a safe place and forgotten. Accordingly, it is reported that St Andrew, the disciple of Jesus and brother of St Peter, appeared in the dreams of two different seekers of the relic. As a result, the location of the Holy Blood in both the ninth and the eleventh centuries were located.

Few relics have been more precious in the Christian imagination than the blood of Christ. A small, elite group of religious sites in Western Europe claims possession of the relic, including the city of Mantova, a direct two-hour train ride from Milan. The Blood of Mantova, contained in a set of sacred vessels, rests in the crypt of the Basilica di Sant’Andrea. The present-day veneration of the relic includes an annual Good Friday procession through the city’s streets.

The earliest source for the Blood of Mantova appears in the Annales Regni Francorum for the year 804, which states that Pope Leo III went to Mantova at the request of Charlemagne to verify rumors of the newly-discovered relic. In 924, due to the Hungarian invasion of Italy, the relic was hidden and subsequently lost until it was rediscovered again in 1048.

The relic of the Most Precious Blood arrived even in Weingarten. According to an ancient document, in the year 1055, Emperor Henry III of the Franks was given part of the Precious Relic. Henry subsequently left the Most Precious Blood as an inheritance to Count Baldovino of Flanders, who in turn gave the Sacred Relic to his daughter, Judith.

When Guelfo IV of Bavaria sought Judith as his spouse, she gave him the Precious Relic, which he himself later gave to the Benedictines at Weingarten, directed at that time by Abbot Wilichon. The solemn ceremony took place March 4, 1094. For this reason the Benedictine Abbey received numerous indulgences from various popes, such that this church became a religious center of extraordinary importance.

Later the Precious Blood was divided into several portions and given to various rulers of the era, the most famous of whom was Charlemagne, and to different popes.

The basilica in Mantova (La Basilica di Sant’Andrea), which houses the relic in a crypt below the central nave, is dedicated to St Andrew. The church, built over a former Franciscan foundation in order to accommodate the growing pilgrim crowds, was founded in 1462 just one year after the head of St Andrew was given to Pope Pius II by the Byzantine despot Thomas Palaeologus. The apostolic relic has been enshrined in one of the four central pillars of St Peter’s Basilica in Rome.

Soon after the eleventh-century rediscovery of the Holy Blood, Pope Leo IX (1053) and Emperor Henry III (1055) came to Mantova to adore the relic, which was subsequently divided into three parts. One portion remained in Mantova, while the pope and the emperor took their shares respectively to Rome and Germany. The emperor’s portion was eventually given to the Weingarten Abbey, which still acknowledges the Italian provenance of its sacred relic.

To this day, the Holy Blood of Weingarten is solemnly carried in a grand equestrian procession on the Friday after Ascension Day, locally known as Blutfreitag. This years celebration known as “The Ride” or “Procession of the Blood” will take place in Weingarten.

Some 3,000 horses ridden by representatives of the individual parishes and by the clergy of the individual churches participated. 30,000 pilgrims are expected to participate in this years’ event, which will take place on May 18.

“Now if you invoke as Father him who judges impartially according to each one’s works, conduct yourselves with reverence during the time of your sojourning, realizing that you were ransomed from your futile conduct, handed on by your ancestors, not with perishable things like silver or gold but with the precious blood of Christ as of a spotless unblemished lamb.”

Like St. Longinus so long ago, we too stand at the foot of the cross healed by the Blood of the Lamb. Remember that each and every Eucharist, the cup of blessing that we bless is a participation in the blood of Christ (1 Corinthians 10:16).

Miracle of the Blood Canosio, Italy 1630

"They abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer, because they confess not the Eucharist to be the flesh of our Saviour Jesus Christ, which suffered for our sins, and which the Father, of His goodness, raised up again" Ignatius of Antioch,Epistle to Smyrnaeans,7,1(c.A.D. 110),in ANF,I:89

"For not as common bread and common drink do we receive these; but in like manner as Jesus Christ our Saviour,having been made flesh and blood for our salvation,so likewise have we been taught that the food which is blessed by the prayer of His word,and from which our blood and flesh by transmutation are nourished,is the flesh and blood of that Jesus who was made flesh." Justin Martyr,First Apology,66(A.D. 110-165),in ANF,I:185

"The bread over which thanks have been given is the body of their Lord, and the cup His blood..." Irenaeus, Against Heresies,IV:18,4(c.A.D. 200),in ANF,I:486

"He acknowledged the cup (which is a part of the creation) as his own blood,from which he bedews our blood; and the bread (also a part of creation) he affirmed to be his own body,from which he gives increase to our bodies." Irenaeus,Against Heresies,V:2,2(c.A.D. 200),in NE,119

This particular Eucharistic miracle features a pastor, Father Antonio Reinardi, whose deep faith in the Eucharist was responsible for saving the village of Canosio from the torrential floods of the Maira River with a blessing of the Blessed Sacrament.

There were many conversions among those who witnessed the miracle and to this day the townspeople of Canosio celebrate a feast during the Octave of Corpus Christi to commemorate the miracle.

Canosio is a small village in the region of Val Maira, in the Diocese of Saluzzo. In 1630, its townspeople had grown cold in their religious observance due to the spread of the Calvinistic heresy.

A day after the feast of Corpus Christi, the river at Maira flooded because of a torrential rainfall. The flood waters were so violent and powerful that some massive stones were dislodged from the mountain and threatened to destroy the valley and the village itself!

Father Antonio Reinardi , the pastor of the town, assembled the townspeople with the ringing of the church bells and exhorted them to pray that the Lord would stop the flood. He vowed that if the village of Canosio were spared from the flood’s destruction, the townspeople would celebrate in perpetuity an annual feast of Corpus Christi.

Father Reinardi then placed the Sacrament in the monstrance. He processed towards the raging flood with some of the faithful as they all recited the "Miserere" Psalm 51. After he blessed the raging waters, the rain stopped at once and the flood waters peaked and returned to their normal level. This incident revived the faith of the townspeople of Canosio and to this day they observe the vow that was made.


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