Tuesday, September 15, 2015

On the Feast of St. Pio of Pietrelcina

The feast of St. Pio of Pietrelcina, who was canonized in 2002, is celebrated on September 23. Ordained an Italian Capuchin priest in 1910, St. Pio was widely known for his virtues, his devotion to the Eucharist, prayer, sacrifice, and his desire to help souls. St. Pio received the visible stigmata on both of his hands in 1918 while humbly praying before the crucifix. He also was able to read the hearts of the penitents who flocked to him for the sacrament of confession; St. Pio spent ten to twelve hours in the confessional daily! Despite his popularity, he would state, "I only want to be a poor friar who prays." St. Pio spent hours during the day and night in prayer.

He once said, “Pray, hope, and don’t worry! Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer. Prayer is the best weapon we have; it is the key to God’s heart. You must speak to Jesus not only with your lips but with your heart. In fact, on certain occasions, you should speak to Him only with your heart.”

The following prayer, penned by St. Alphonsus Liguori, was recited daily by St. Pio.

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Prayer for A Visit to the Most Blessed Sacrament

O my Lord Jesus Christ, who for the love You bear mankind, remain night and day in this Sacrament, all full of tenderness and love, expecting and receiving all those who come to visit You: I believe that You are present in the Sacrament of the altar; I adore You from the depths of my own nothingness and thank You for all the favors You have bestowed upon me; and especially for having given me Yourself in this Sacrament, and Your holy Mother Mary as my Advocate; and for having called me to visit You in this church. I pay homage this day to Your most loving Heart and this I intend to do for three intentions: first, in thanksgiving for this great gift; secondly, in reparation for all the insults You have received from Your enemies in this Sacrament; thirdly, by this visit I intend to adore You in all places upon the earth, where You are least adored and most neglected in Your Sacrament.

My Jesus, I love You with my whole heart. I repent of having in the past so many times displeased Your infinite goodness. I intend, with the help of Your grace never more to offend You in the future; and at the present, wretched as I am, I consecrate myself wholly to You. I give You, and utterly renounce, my entire will, all my affections, all my desires, and all that I possess. From this day forth, do with me and with all that is mine whatever is pleasing in Your sight. I ask and desire only Your holy love, final perseverance and the perfect fulfillment of Your will.

I commend to You the souls in purgatory, especially those who were most devoted to this Blessed Sacrament and to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

I commend to You in like manner all poor sinners. Finally, my dear Savior, I unite all my affections with those of Your most loving Heart, and thus united I offer them to Your eternal Father, and I pray to Him in Your name graciously to accept and answer them for love of You.
---by St. Alphonsus Liguori

God bless!

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