It is the duty of every soul to raise their mind and heart to God, to worship Him, to bless Him and to thank Him.
In this valley of tears, prayer is one of the greatest comfort we can have. God urges us insistently to pray: “Ask and it will be given to you” (St. John, XVI, 24). “Pray, that you may not enter into temptation” (St. Luke, XXII, 40). “Pray without ceasing” (I Thessalonians, V, 17).
The doctors of the holy church teach that prayer is a means without which one cannot obtain the help needed to save oneself. “He who prays, saves himself, he who does not pray, damns himself; on the contrary, it is not necessary for the devil to drag him to hell; he himself goes there with his own feet “(St. Alphonsus).
If what is asked of God in prayer is useful to the soul, it is obtained; if it is not useful, some other grace will be obtained, perhaps superior to the one requested.
For prayer to be effective, it must be done for the sake of the soul and also with great humility and great trust in the Lord; the soul that turns to God must be in a state of grace, that is, detached from sin, particularly from hatred and impurity.
Many do not ask anything else but only temporal things, while the most useful and those that God bestows more willingly are the spiritual ones.
Most often our prayer is incomplete; we usually only want to ask for graces. We must also pray for other purposes like: to adore our Divine Lord, to bless our God, to thank Him, both for us and for those who neglect to do so. In order to make our prayer more accepting of God, let us present it through the hands of Mary, She who is the most worthy before the throne of the Most High. Let us often pray to the all-powerful Queen and our prayer will not remain unanswered. We often recite the Hail Mary, before and after eating and working, before undertaking some important business or setting off on a journey. Morning, noon and evening we salute the Virgin Mary with the Angelus and not a day goes by without offering the Virgin Mary the recitation of the Rosary. Singing a devotional song is also praying and Mary likes the praises that are sung in Her honor.
Beside vocal prayer, there is mental prayer, which is also called meditation, and it consists in reflecting on the great truths that God has revealed to us. Our Lady, as the Gospel teaches, meditated in Her heart the words that Jesus said; Let us imitate Her example of prayer.
Meditation is not only a duty of a few souls who strive for perfection, but it is a duty of all those who want to stay away from sin: ” In all you do, remember the end of your life, and then you will never sin.” (Sirach VII, 36) .
One should therefore remember that one has to die and leave everything, that one will rot under the earth, that one must account to God everything, even words and thoughts, and that another life awaits us.
In homage to Our Lady, let us promise to do a little meditation every day; if we cannot have much time, let’s take at least a few minutes. Let us choose that book, which we consider most useful to our soul. Those who lack a book, learn to meditate on the Crucifix and the image of the Sorrowful Mother.
A priest, by reason of his sacred ministry, visited a family. An old woman, aged eighty, welcomed him respectfully and showed him her desire to carry out a charitable work.
I am advanced in years; I have no heirs; I’m single; I would like to help some poor young persons, who feel called to the priesthood. I’m happy and my sister too is happy to help. If want, I will call my sister.
Her ninety-one years old sister looks serene and lively and with a still perfect clarity of mind. She entertained the priest with a long and interesting conversation:
Reverend, do you confess?
Never neglect to tell the penitents to do their meditation every day! When I was young, every time I presented myself at the confessional, the priest would say to me: Did you do your meditation? And he reproached me if sometimes I happened to omit it.
A century ago, replied the priest, they insisted on meditation; but today if you can get one to go to Mass on Sundays, and not to give themselves in to immoral entertainments, and not to give scandal … it’s already asking too much for them! Before there was more meditation and consequently more rectitude and morality; Today there is little or no meditation and souls go from bad to worse!
A Little Spiritual Flower Offering to our Lady:
– Do some meditation, possibly on the Passion of Jesus and on the sorrows of our Lady.
Prayer to Mary:
– I offer you, O Holy Virgin, my past, my present and my future!
Adapted and Translated from:
MARIA REGINA E MADRE DI MISERICORDIA (Mese di Maggio) – by DON GIUSEPPE TOMASELLI