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The Catholic Defender: Novena To The Holy Spirit through Pentecost


The Mass is the source of the Purpose, the Passion, and the Power:


God the Father is the Purpose, God the Son is the Passion, God the Holy Spirit is the Power. The God of Heaven comes to us in His Eucharistic Presence. Jesus is truly Present Body, Blood, Soul, Divinity.


Holy Spirit! Lord of Light! From Your clear celestial height, Your pure beaming radiance give!


The Holy Spirit


Only one thing is important -- eternal salvation. Only one thing, therefore, is to be feared--sin! Sin is the result of ignorance, weakness, and indifference. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Light, of Strength, and of Love. With His sevenfold gifts He enlightens the mind, strengthens the will, and inflames the heart with love of God. To ensure our salvation we ought to invoke the Divine Spirit daily, for 'The Spirit helpeth our infirmity. We know not what we should pray for as we ought. But the Spirit Himself asketh for us.'


Prayer


Almighty and eternal God, Who hast vouchsafed to regenerate us by water and the Holy Spirit, and hast given us forgiveness of all sins, vouchsafe to send forth from heaven upon us your sevenfold Spirit, the Spirit of Wisdom and Understanding, the Spirit of Counsel and Fortitude, the Spirit of Knowledge and Piety, and fill us with the Spirit of Holy Fear. Amen.


Our Father and Hail Mary once Glory be to the Father SEVEN TIMES


ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY SPIRIT


On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses,


I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God.


I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love.


You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am.


I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations.


I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness.


Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace,


O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, 'Speak Lord for Your servant heareth.' Amen.


PRAYER FOR THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT


O Lord Jesus Christ, Who, before ascending into heaven, did promise to send the Holy Spirit to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the


Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal,


the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth,


the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven,


the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation,


the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints,


the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the


Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.


St. Philip Neri Novena

Saint Philip Neri, also known as the Apostle of Rome, was an Italian priest in the 16th century. He is especially noted for founding a society of secular priests called the Congregation of the Oratory.

Saint Philip Neri is also especially known for showing the humorous side of holiness, as well as for being extremely humble — as humility was one of the most important virtues he tried to teach others.

When asked how to pray, Saint Philip Neri would respond, “Be humble and obedient, and the Holy Spirit will teach you.”

His feast day is on May 26th, but you can pray through his intercession any time! If Philip heard of anyone having committed a crime, he would say, “Thank God that I have not done worse.”


At confession he would shed abundance of tears, and say, “I have never done a good action.”


When a penitent showed that she could not bear the rudeness shown towards him by certain persons who were under great obligations to him, he answered her, “If I were humble, God would not send this to me.”


When one of his spiritual children said to him, “Father, I wish to have something of yours for devotion, for I know you are a Saint,” he turned to her with a face full of anger, and broke out into these words: “Begone with you! I am a devil, and not a saint.”

To another who said to him, “Father, a temptation has come to me to think that you are not what the world takes you for,” he made answer: “Be sure of this, that I am a man like my neighbours, and nothing more.”


If he heard of any who had a good opinion of him, he used to say, “O poor me! how many poor girls will be greater in Paradise than I shall be!”


He avoided all marks of honour. He could not bear to receive any signs of respect. When people wished to touch his clothes, and knelt as he passed by, he used to say, “Get up! get out of my way!” He did not like people to kiss his hand; though he sometimes let them do so, lest he should hurt their feelings.


He was an enemy to all rivalry and contention. He always took in good part everything that was said to him. He had a particular dislike of affectation, whether in speaking, or in dressing, or in anything else.


He could not bear two-faced persons; as for liars, he could not endure them, and was continually reminding his spiritual children to avoid them as they would a pestilence.


He always asked advice, even on affairs of minor importance. His constant counsel to his penitents was, that they should not trust in themselves, but always take the advice of others, and get as many prayers as they could.

He took great pleasure in being lightly esteemed, nay, even despised.


He had a most pleasant manner of transacting business with others, great sweetness in conversation, and was full of compassion and consideration.


He had always a dislike to speak of himself. The phrases “I said,” “I did,” were rarely in his mouth. He exhorted others never to make a display of themselves, especially in those things which tended to their credit, whether in earnest or in joke.


As St. John the Evangelist, when old, was continually saying, “Little children, love one another,” so Philip was ever repeating his favourite lesson, “Be humble; think little of yourselves.”


He said that if we did a good work, and another took the credit of it to himself, we ought to rejoice and thank God.


He said no one ought to say, “Oh! I shall not fall, I shall not commit sin,” for it was a clear sign that he would fall. He was greatly displeased with those who made excuses for themselves, and called such persons. “My Lady Eve,” because Eve defended herself instead of being humble.


Prayer


Philip, my glorious patron, who didst count as dross the praise, and even the good esteem of men, obtain for me also, from my Lord and Saviour, this fair virtue by thy prayers. How haughty are my thoughts, how contemptuous are my words, how ambitious are my works. Gain for me that low esteem of self with which thou wast gifted; obtain for me a knowledge of my own nothingness, that I may rejoice when I am despised, and ever seek to be great only in the eyes of my God and Judge.


Eucharistic Miracle of Silla Spain 1907

During Holy Mass on March 25, 1907, the Feast of the Annunciation, Father Fernando Gómez, pastor of the Church of Our Lady of the Angels in Silla, was going up to the tabernacle to take out the Hosts in order to distribute Holy Communion to the faithful.


To his great dismay, he found the door of the tabernacle already opened and saw that the precious silver ciborium containing the Sacred Hosts was missing.


The Sacred Hosts were recovered two days later in a small garden outside the city, concealed under a rock.


The pastor therefore brought them back to the church in a solemn procession.


In 1934, having established that the Hosts remained “in the same state in which they were recovered under the rock and maintained their original condition unaltered,” the Archbishop of Valencia initiated the process to declare their preservation miraculous and sealed the reliquary containing them with wax, while drawing up a detailed account of the Miracle.


Unfortunately, two years later, the Archbishop’s palace was burned down by communist anarchists, and the precious document was lost.


Finally, in 1982, the Archbishop of Valencia in office that year, Monsignor Miguel Roca, initiated a new canonical process, resulting in the official authorization of the devotion surrounding the Sacred Hosts.


Friday of the Fourth Week of Easter

Reading 1 Acts 13:26-33 When Paul came to Antioch in Pisidia, he said in the synagogue: "My brothers, children of the family of Abraham, and those others among you who are God-fearing, to us this word of salvation has been sent. The inhabitants of Jerusalem and their leaders failed to recognize him, and by condemning him they fulfilled the oracles of the prophets that are read sabbath after sabbath. For even though they found no grounds for a death sentence, they asked Pilate to have him put to death, and when they had accomplished all that was written about him, they took him down from the tree and placed him in a tomb. But God raised him from the dead, and for many days he appeared to those who had come up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem. These are now his witnesses before the people. We ourselves are proclaiming this good news to you that what God promised our fathers he has brought to fulfillment for us, their children, by raising up Jesus, as it is written in the second psalm, You are my Son; this day I have begotten you."

Responsorial Psalm Ps 2:6-7, 8-9, 10-11ab R.(7bc) You are my Son; this day I have begotten you. or: R. Alleluia. "I myself have set up my king on Zion, my holy mountain." I will proclaim the decree of the LORD: The LORD said to me, "You are my Son; this day I have begotten you." R. You are my Son; this day I have begotten you. or: R. Alleluia. "Ask of me and I will give you the nations for an inheritance and the ends of the earth for your possession. You shall rule them with an iron rod; you shall shatter them like an earthen dish." R. You are my Son; this day I have begotten you. or: R. Alleluia. And now, O kings, give heed; take warning, you rulers of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice before him; with trembling rejoice. R. You are my Son; this day I have begotten you. or: R. Alleluia.

Alleluia Jn 14:6 R. Alleluia, alleluia. I am the way and the truth and the life, says the Lord; no one comes to the Father except through me. R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Jn 14:1-6 Jesus said to his disciples: "Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith in God; have faith also in me. In my Father's house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and take you to myself, so that where I am you also may be. Where I am going you know the way." Thomas said to him, "Master, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?" Jesus said to him, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."


Saint of the Day: Saints Marian and James

Born in North Africa, Marian was a lector or reader; James was a deacon. For their devotion to the faith they suffered during the persecution of Valerian.


In 257, during the reign of the Roman Emperor Valerian (253 – 260), all Christian gatherings were banned, the visiting of burial grounds denied and clergy exiled.


St’s Marian & James were eventually arrested and imprisoned for continuing to practice their Christian faith. While in prison, awaiting execution, they had a vision from the Bishops Agapius and Secundinus. They were martyred at either Cirta or Lambesa.


A year later, the persecution of Christians was made even more merciless by immediately executing all clergy and imprisoning others with chains while expecting them to perform hard labour. Among the many executed were the Bishops Agapius and Secundinus whom St’s Marian & James had once met.


Prior to their persecution Marian and James were visited by two bishops who encouraged them in the faith not long before they themselves were martyred. A short time later, Marian and James were arrested and interrogated.

The two readily confessed their faith and, for that, were tortured. While in prison they are said to have experienced visions, including one of the two bishops who had visited them earlier.


On the last day of their lives, Marian and James joined other Christians facing martyrdom. They were blindfolded and then put to death. Their bodies were thrown into the water. The year was 259.



The old saying that the more things change the more they stay the same may apply to today’s celebration. Two faithful people facing the hardships of life during persecution in the third century may have a lot in common with those facing persecution for their faith today.


The place of the martyrs' execution was in a river valley with high banks on each side. A number of others unnamed suffered with Marian and James. The martyrs were arranged in rows and blindfolded, then beheaded. Their bodies were thrown in the river Rummel.

Marian prophesied that epidemics, famine, earthquakes, and poisonous flies would soon afflict the neighbourhood. His mother Mary was present and embraced his lacerated body, but through their suffering, said the writer, they were ‘at last restored to the patriarchs in glory and delivered from the distress of this world’. Feast: 6 May.


Pray for us that we will hold fast to our faith through our words and actions.


and their bodies are said to be kept in the cathedral there The names of these martyrs are consecrated in the Roman Martyrology.

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