MONTH OF THE
MOST BLESSED SACRAMENT
Meditations by St. Alphonsus Liguori
Who is this that cometh up from the desert flowing with delights, leaning upon her Beloved. — Cant. viii. 5.
Who are the souls that, living on earth, consider it a desert, so that, detached from visible things, they live only for God, as if there were no other but God Whom alone they love, and wish to please? Who are they who thus seem to quit the earth, and raise themselves above it, tasting the delights which are enjoyed by those who regard only God, and rest all their hopes in Him?
Who are these happy souls, if not those who often, and from pure love, unite themselves to Jesus in the adorable Sacrament? O my God, through Thy grace I wish to be such, detached from all things and wholly Thine. Henceforward the world shall be to me a desert, where, avoiding all attachment to any creature whatsoever, I will think only of Thee, as if there were none other but Thyself and me. In Thee alone will I put all my trust, Thee alone will I love, O God, God Whom I love, my Hope, my Beloved, my All.
Act of Atonement
I come before Thee, my beloved Jesus, to endeavour to atone for my ingratitude to Thee in this Sacrament of love; for alas! the arrows which most deeply wound Thy Heart come from mine, to which Thou hast shown such boundless love and mercy. For my sake Thou wert, in Thy Infancy, surrounded by poverty, laid on straw, and didst shed tears of love; for me Thou didst pass Thy life in toil and suffering; for me Thou didst expire on the Cross, amid anguish and contempt. Thy love, my Jesus, has gone yet further, since it has inspired Thee with a means of remaining in this vale of tears, to comfort me in my afflictions, to strengthen my weakness, and console me in my exile; my God, how much has it cost Thee to give me this proof of Thy love! Thou dost annihilate Thy greatness and obey Thy own creatures, and Thou dost expose Thyself to the outrages, blasphemies, indifference, and forgetfulness of Thy children: what have I done to deserve such love? Alas! I have not loved Thee, I have not assiduously visited Thee, or fervently received Thee, or faithfully listened to Thy Voice; I have hardly thought of Thee! How often have dissipation, vanity, trifles of every kind occupied my mind, even at the foot of Thy Tabernacle! How often, when I have had the happiness of possessing Thee in my heart, have I left Thee, instead of conversing with Thee! What shall I say to excuse myself? Lord, I can only cast myself at Thy Feet, and beseech Thee to forgive a sinner who acknowledges his ingratitude: do not reject a contrite and humbled heart; Thou hast commanded me to come to Thee when overwhelmed with the weight of my misery, deign then to help me, and heal me, and enable me to love Thee. O God of love, what can I love if I love not Thee, Who art all perfection! Oh! let my soul henceforward sigh for Thee alone, let it melt at the very name of Thy Manger, Thy Cross, Thy Sacrament: to love Thee, my Jesus, is all I desire in time and in Eternity. Amen.
Prayers to the Ever-Blessed Mother of God For Everyday of the Week
Prayer to the ever-blessed Mary to obtain
Deliverance from Hell
O most Beloved Lady, I thank thee, who hast rescued me from Hell as often as I have deserved it by my sins. I unhappily incurred condemnation to that fearful prison, and perhaps the sentence due to my first sin would have been executed, if thou hadst not compassionately helped me: out of thy mere goodness, and without my even praying to thee, thou didst restrain the Justice of God, and then, conquering the hardness of my heart, thou didst win me to have confidence in thee. Into how many other sins should I not afterwards have fallen, in the dangers I have met with, if thou, most loving Mother, hadst not preserved me, by the graces thou hast obtained for me: save me, then, from Hell, for of what use will all thy past mercies and favours be, if I lose my soul? There was a time when I loved thee not; but now, next to God, I love thee above all things: I beseech thee let me never turn from God, Who has given me so many blessings by thy hands. Beloved Lady, let me never have the misfortune of hating and cursing thee in Hell: wilt thou endure to see a servant who loves thee lost? And I shall be lost if I leave thee, O Mary: but who could have the heart to leave thee? Who could forget such love as thou hast shewn me? Since, then, thou hast done so much to save me, complete thy work, help me to the end: if when I lived forgetful of thee thou didst so favour me, how much more may I hope now that I love thee, and recommend myself to thee! No: they who apply to thee are never lost, but only those who will not have recourse to thee: leave me not, most holy Mother, or I shall be lost; make me always have recourse to thee: my Hope, save me from Hell, and from sin which alone can condemn to Hell. Amen.