Saint Gertrude the Great (1256-1302) was one of the first people to pray and devote energy to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. She was a German Cistercian, mystic, and theologian.
Gertrude produced numerous writings, though only some survive today. The longest survival is the The Herald of Divine Love. There also remains her collection of Spiritual Exercises. A work known as Preces Gertrudianae (Gertrudian Prayers) is a later compilation, made up partly of extracts from the writings of Gertrude and partly of prayers composed in her style. It is also very possible that Gertrude was the author of a part of the revelations of Mechthild the Book of Special Grace.
The importance of the Spiritual Exercises extends to the present day because they are grounded in themes and rites of Church liturgy for occasions of Baptism, conversion, commitment, discipleship, union with God, praise of God, and preparation for death. Gertrude’s Spiritual Exercises can still be used by anyone who seeks to deepen spirituality through prayer and meditation.
Prayer to Sacred Heart of Jesus:
Hail! O Sacred Heart of Jesus, living and quickening source of eternal life, infinite treasure of the Divinity, and burning furnace of divine love. Thou art my refuge and my sanctuary, O my amiable Savior. Consume my heart with that burning fire with which Thine is ever inflamed. Pour down on my soul those graces which flow from Thy love, and let my heart be so united with Thine, that our wills may be one, and mine in all things, be conformed to Thine. May Thy divine will be equally the standard and rule of all my desires and of all my actions. Amen.
Here an invocation to the Sacred Heart meant to repeat abundantly daily.
Love to you, my dear cosmic travellers!
Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. . . . Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love Him” (James 1:2-4,12).
What does this phrase mean?
We are priests of God by our baptism. We are not ministerial priests, who offer up the sacrifice of Christ upon the altar at Holy Mass. But, as non-ministerial priests, we do offer something to God: our bodies, our actions, our labor, and even our sufferings.
We can we “offer it up” simply by asking God, in the midst of our suffering, to join our suffering to Christ’s, and to use our suffering.
From November 1 through November 8, we can help the Holy Souls in Purgatory, —those who have died in grace, yet who failed in this life to make satisfaction for all of their sins. On each of those days that we receive Communion, we can visit a cemetery, pray for the dead, and gain a plenary indulgence, for one soul—thus releasing him or her from Purgatory.
November is the month of Souls. Memento mori, or also memento mortis, “remember death”, is the Latin medieval designation of the theory and practice of the reflection on mortality, especially as a means of considering the vanity of earthly life and the transient nature of all earthly goods and pursuits and turning your attention towards the immortality of the soul and the afterlife.
Our Father who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us,
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.
“…it’s like this. Sometimes, when you’ve a very long street ahead of you, you think how terribly long it is and feel sure you’ll never get it swept. And then you start to hurry. You work faster and faster and every time you look up there seems to be just as much left to sweep as before, and you try even harder, and you panic, and in the end you’re out of breath and have to stop–and still the street stretches away in front of you. That’s not the way to do it.
You must never think of the whole street at once, understand? You must only concentrate on the next step, the next breath, the next stroke of the broom, and the next, and the next. Nothing else.
That way you enjoy your work, which is important, because then you make a good job of it. And that’s how it ought to be.
And all at once, before you know it, you find you’ve swept the whole street clean, bit by bit. what’s more, you aren’t out of breath. That’s important, too… (28-29)”
Michael Ende, Momo
Michael Ende was one of the most popular German authors of the 20th Century, captivating millions of children around the world with his fantasy stories. His most successful book, The NeverEnding Story (1979) has been translated into more than 30 languages, made into a hit movie in 1984, and remains a much-loved, international bestseller.
On Tuesday October 21, 2014, many students around the world will commit to remain silent the entire day to show their solidarity with the children still in the womb, who are killed silently by the violent act of abortion. This “Pro-life Day of Silent Solidarity” was started by Bryan Kemper, the Youth Outreach Director for Priests for Life. The students say nothing, and if they are approached, they hand the person a brochure explaining abortion. Go to SilentDay.org for more information on how to participate this October 21.
An early morning walk began through the back entrance of a garden sanctuary. The fields were damp with the morning dew and the sun postured itself for a glorious autumn day. You can barely see anything, its a messy weedy field, un-kept at the moment. Perfect for my feelings.
Coming from behind, the white cross hidden above the purple plum leaves, I love the way the cross appears light amid the dark leaves. And the high heavens above for the cross to bloom infinitely.
I kneel beneath the cross, recite my thoughts into prayers, speaking to our creator, a way to being whole, hearing my heart, laying down my burdens, side by side.
Followed my eyes to these beauties….nature doesn’t think, it unfolds in perfect harmony to the rhythm of the universe.
Looking and being one with nature is a sure way to find your ohm and begin to understand our human nature through the fine details of mother nature.
If they could speak,
“Good morning, my love. Watch me grow. And know everything that’s broke, leave it to the breeze.”
Upon leaving, Mother Mary meets me, we talk and say the Rosary together. So me, how I go in the exit and leave through the entrance. A sign, I see across the way, surely was supposed to meet me as I entered. But really fit for me to read on the way out.