Pray Always

"Ask, and it shall be given you: seek, and you shall find: knock, and it shall be opened to you.
For every one that asketh, receiveth: and he that seeketh, findeth: and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened." -Matthew 7:7-8

“We ought always to pray.” –Luke 18:1

“Pray always” –Romans 12:12

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Novena to Saint Lucy, Virgin and Martyr

Novena to Saint Lucy
December 4th-12th

Prayers for Each Day

O Saint Lucy, you preferred to let your eyes be torn out instead of denying the faith and defiling your soul; and God, through an extraordinary miracle, replaced them with another pair of sound and perfect eyes to reward your virtue and faith, appointing you as the protector against eye diseases. I come to you for you to protect my eyesight and to heal the illness in my eyes.

O Saint Lucy, preserve the light of my eyes so that I may see the beauties of creation, the glow of the sun, the color of the flowers and the smile of children.

Preserve also the eyes of my soul, the faith, through which I can know my God, understand His teachings, recognize His love for me and never miss the road that leads me to where you, St Lucy, can be found in the company of the angels and saints.

St Lucy, protect my eyes and preserve my faith. Amen.

Say three times the “Our Father”, “Hail Mary”, and “Glory be”.

We present ourselves before thee, O virgin Martyr, beseeching thee to obtain for us that we may recognize in His lowliness that same Jesus Whom thou now seest in His glory. Take us under thy powerful patronage. Thy name signifies light; guide us through the dark night of this life. O fair light of virginity! enlighten us; evil concupiscence has wounded our eyes: pray for us, O thou bright light of virginity! that our blindness be healed, and that rising above created things, we may be able to see that true light, which shineth in darkness, but which darkness cannot comprehend. Pray for us, that our eye may be purified, and may see, in the Child who is to be born at Bethlehem, the new Man, the second Adam, the model on Which the life of our regeneration must be formed. Pray too, O holy virgin, for the Church of Rome and for all those which adopt her form of the holy Sacrifice; for they daily pronounce at the altar of God thy sweet name; and the Lamb, Who is present, loves to hear it. Heap thy choicest blessings on the fair Isle, which was thy native land, and where grew the palm of thy Martyrdom. May thy intercession secure to her inhabitants firmness of faith, purity of morals, and temporal prosperity, and deliver them from the disorders which threaten her with destruction. (Dom Prosper Gueranger, The Liturgical Year)

Day 1

Orante sancta Lucia, apparuit ei beata Agatha, et consolabatur ancillam Christi.
While St. Lucy was praying, the blessed Agatha appeared unto her, and consoled the handmaiden of Christ.
Dilexísti iustítiam, et odísti iniquitátem: proptérea unxit te Deus, Deus tuus, óleo lætítiae præ consórtibus tuis. Eructávit cor meum verbum bonum: dico ego ópera mea Regi.
You love justice and hate wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness above your fellows.  My heart overflows with a goodly theme; as I sing my ode to the King.

Prayers for each day (see above).

Day 2

Lucia virgo, quid a me petis, quod ipsa poteris praestare continuo matri tuae?
O virgin Lucy, wherefore askest thou of me what thou canst thyself forthwith obtain for thy mother?
Diffúsa est grátia in lábiis tuis: proptérea benedíxit te Deus in ætérnum. Allelúia.
Grace is poured out upon your lips; thus God has blessed you forever. Alleluia.

Prayers for each day (see above).

Day 3

Per te, Lucia virgo, civitas Syracusana decorabitur a Domino Iesu Christo.
Through thee, O virgin Lucy, the city of Syracuse shall be made glorious by the Lord Jesus Christ.
Afferéntur Regi Vírgines post eam: próximæ eius afferéntur tibi in lætítia et exsultatióne: adducéntur in templum Regi Dómino.
Behind her the virgins of her train are brought to the King. They are borne in to You with gladness and joy; they enter the palace of the Lord, the King.

Prayers for each day (see above).

Day 4

Benedico te, Pater Domini mei Iesu Christi, quia per Filium tuum ignis exstinctus est a latere meo.
I bless thee, O Father of my Lord Jesus Christ, for through thy Son the fire was extinguished round about me.
Príncipes persecúti sunt me gratis, et a verbis tuis formidávit cor meum: lætábor ego super elóquia tua, quasi qui invénit spólia multa.
Princes persecute me without cause, but my heart stands in awe of Your word. I rejoice at Your promise, as one who has found rich spoil.

Prayers for each day (see above).

Day 5

Soror mea Lucia, virgo Deo devota, quid a me petis, quod ipsa poteris praestare continuo matri tuae?
Lucy my sister, thou virgin consecrated to God, wherefore askest thou of me what thou canst thyself forthwith obtain for thy mother?
Benedícite, spíritus, et ánimæ iustórum, Dómino: benedícite, sancti, et húmiles corde, Dómino.
O ye spirits and souls of the just, bless the Lord: O ye holy and humble of heart, bless the Lord.

Prayers for each day (see above).

Day 6

Columna es immobilis Lucia sponsa Christi: quia omnis plebs te exspectat, ut accipias coronam vitae, alleluia.
Thou art become as a pillar that cannot be shaken, Lucy, O Bride of Christ: all the people wait for thee, until thou receive the crown of life, alleluia.
Iesu, coróna Vírginum,
Quem Mater illa cóncipit
Quæ sola Virgo párturit,
Hæc vota clemens áccipe:

Qui pergis inter lília
Septus choréis Vírginum,
Sponsus decórus glória
Sponsísque reddens præmia.

Quocúmque tendis, Vírgines
Sequúntur, atque láudibus
Post te canéntes cúrsitant,
Hymnósque dulces pérsonant;
Jesu, the virgins' crown, do thou
Accept us as in prayer we bow;
Born of that Virgin, whom alone
The mother and the maid we own.

Amongst the lilies thou dost feed,
By virgin choirs accompanied -
With glory decked, the spotless brides
Whose bridal gifts thy love provides.

They, wheresoe'er thy footsteps bend,
With hymns and praises still attend:
In blessed troops they follow thee,
With dance, and song, and melody.

Prayers for each day (see above).

Day 7

Tanto pondere eam fixit Spiritus Sanctus, ut Virgo Christi immobilis permaneret.
With such power did the Holy Spirit fix her to the ground, that the virgin of Christ remained immovable.
Te deprecámur súpplices,
Nostris ut addas sénsibus
Nescíre prorsus ómnia
Corruptiónis vúlnera.

Virtus, honor, laus, glória
Deo Patri cum Fílio,
Sancto simul Paráclito,
In sæculórum sæcula. Amen.
We pray thee therefore to bestow
Upon our senses here below
Thy grace, that so we may endure
From taint of all corruption pure.

All laud to God the Father be,
All praise, eternal Son, to thee;
All glory as is ever meet,
To God, the holy Paraclete. Amen.

Prayers for each day (see above).

Day 8

Part I of Chapter XXVIII of The Victories of the Martyrs by Saint Alphonsus Maria de Ligouri

St. Lucy was descended of a noble family of Syracuse, which was then regarded as the principal city of Sicily. She lost her father in her infancy; but Eutychia, her mother, took care to educate her properly, and to instruct her well in the doctrines of our holy faith. When our saint arrived at a proper age, her mother began to think of giving her in marriage, but Lucy, who had consecrated her virginity to Jesus Christ, awaited only a favorable opportunity to reveal her resolution to her mother.

This opportunity soon presented itself. Eutychia was afflicted for many years with a flux of blood, without being able to find any effectual remedy. St. Lucy, therefore, persuaded her to repair to the tomb of St. Agatha, martyred a half century before in Catania, where the Lord was pleased to work man)- miracles, and there to implore her cure. When they arrived at Catania, they prostrated themselves in prayer before the sepulchre of St. Agatha, where Lucy, perhaps from fatigue of the journey, was overpowered with sleep.  The blessed martyr appeared to her, and as we read in the Roman Breviary, said: “Lucy! why dost thou demand through my intercession that which, by thy faith, thou canst thyself obtain for thy mother ?” She then assured Lucy that God would work the desired cure, and that, for having preserved her virginity inviolate, God would reward her in Syracuse with the same glory she herself had received in Catania.

Lucy, animated by this vision, was the more confirmed in her resolution of remaining always consecrated to Jesus Christ, and told her mother to speak to her no more of marriage, but to distribute her fortune among the poor. Eutychia answered, that at her death she would bequeath all to her, and that she might do with it as she pleased; but Lucy replied, that gratitude for her miraculous cure ought to induce her willingly to deprive herself during life of that which, at her death, she should necessarily leave behind her.

The mother consented, and when they returned to Syracuse, they commenced to sell their property, and to distribute the proceeds among the poor. Lucy’s suitor perceiving this, complained to Eutychia; but he found that his representations were totally ineffectual, and, in his rage, accused her before the governor, Paschasius, as being a Christian, contrary to the edicts of Diocletian and Maximian. The saint was accordingly arrested and brought before the governor, who endeavored to persuade her to sacrifice to the idols; but Lucy replied, that the sacrifice most agreeable to God was the relief of the poor, in which she was actually engaged and that she was prepared to sacrifice even her life…

Prayers for each day (see above).

Day 9

Part II of Chapter XXVIII of The Victories of the Martyrs by Saint Alphonsus Maria de Ligouri

Paschasius replied, that she ought to obey the emperor, as he did; but the saint answered: “Day and night I meditate upon the divine law; and if thou art anxious to please the emperor, I am anxious to please my God; therefore it is that I have consecrated to him my virginity.”   Paschasius in his rage told her that she was impurity itself. The saint replied: “No, thou art impurity, since thou dost endeavor to corrupt Christian souls, alienating them from God, to serve the devil, wrongly preferring, as thou dost, the goods of this world to those of heaven.” Paschasius: “Torments shall stop thy mouth.” Lucy:  “Words shall never be wanting to the servants of God, since the Lord hath promised that the Holy Ghost shall speak through them.” (Matt. 10:20)  Paschasius: “Then the Holy Ghost is within thee?” Lucy: “St. Paul hath said, that those who live chastely and piously are the temples of the Holy Ghost.” (Cor. 5:16-6:19)  “Since this is the case,” said the tyrant, “ I will cause thee to be brought to an infamous place, in order that the Holy Ghost may leave thee.” The saint replied: “The body receiveth no stain when the will is averse to sin; on the contrary, the violence you meditate would double my crown.”

The governor then threatened the most horrid tortures, in case she continued obstinate. The saint intrepidly exclaimed: Behold my body ready to suffer every torture! why dost thou delay?  Begin the execution of that to which the devil, thy father, prompts thee.” Paschasius, maddened with rage, ordered that she should instantly be brought to the place of infamy, in order that she might first lose the honor of virginity, and then be deprived of life.

The guards endeavored to execute this command, but found that God had rendered her so immovable, that all their exertions were insufficient to drag her from the spot. Paschasius in astonishment exclaimed: “What incantation is this?” The saint replied: “This is not an incantation, but the power of God. Why dost thou fatigue thyself? Dost thou not manifestly perceive that I am the temple of the Lord?”

Paschasius, more confused and infuriated than ever, ordered a great fire to be kindled round the saint that she might be burned; but Lucy, nothing daunted, said to the tyrant:  “ I will pray to the Lord Jesus that the fire may not injure me, in order that the faithful may witness the divine power, and that the infidels may be confused.” The friends of Paschasius, unwilling that the people should witness any further miracle, advised him to have her beheaded; but after having been tortured in many other ways, her throat was pierced with the point of a sword. (See the Breviary and the martyrology) The saint did not expire immediately; she threw herself on her knees, offered her death to God; and having foretold that peace would soon be restored to the Church, consummated her martyrdom, in the year 303 or 304.  Her name is inserted in the Canon of the Mass.

Prayers for each day (see above).

December 13th - Feast of Saint Lucy, Virgin and Martyr

Litany of Saint Lucy

Lord have mercy on us
Christ have mercy on us
Lord have mercy on us
Christ hear us
Christ graciously hear us

God the Father of heaven Have mercy on us
God the Son Redeemer of the world
God the Holy Spirit
Holy Trinity One God

Holy Mary Pray for us
Holy Virgin of Virgins
St Lucy, Virgin and Martyr
St Lucy, Lily of Purity
St Lucy, gifted with surpassing beauty and wisdom
St Lucy, an example of obedience
St Lucy, ornamental of the city of Syracuse
St Lucy, born of noble parents
St Lucy, who didst cure thy own mother
St Lucy, who didst consecrate thy virginity to God
St Lucy, who didst despise worldly honours
St Lucy, who didst refuse to sacrifice to the false gods
St Lucy, who didst adore the true god
St Lucy, heroic in sacrifice
St Lucy, who didst distribute thy wealth to the poor
St Lucy, courageous in thy answer to the pagan judge
St Lucy, strengthened by the grace of God
St Lucy, whose hands and feet were tied with cords
St Lucy, who was thrown into a fiery furnace
St Lucy, whose neck was cut asunder by the executioner
St Lucy, who didst prophesy the defeat of cruel tyrants
St Lucy, who didst offer thy life for God
St Lucy, martyred for the faith of Christ
St Lucy, who dost restore sight to the blind
St Lucy, who dost work many miracles
St Lucy, who didst win the Crown of Martyrdom

Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world
Spare us, O Lord
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world
Graciously hear us, O Lord
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world
Have mercy on us

Pray for us, St Lucy
That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ

Let us pray

O Lord God, who didst protect thy servant St. Lucy, on earth and didst bestow on her the crown of martyrdom in heaven, grant us also thy protection here below, and bestow on us the crown of glory in heaven, through Christ Our Lord. Amen

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