The prophets and saints were often put to the test by God. They were asked to go places and do things that seemed impossible. And indeed, they were impossible if it were not for the help of God. The Lord also allows us to be tested so that we can be strengthened and grow in our faith. Abraham is one who was tested. God asked him to leave his home and friends for a “promised land.” How easy it would have been to say “no.” Who wants to leave their place of comfort and familiarity? But Abraham trusted and God rewarded him for that trust.
Whenever trials, difficulties, and temptations come our way, they are an opportunity to grow in faith. Not that God sends evil to His people, but He allows it for the greater good. In our trials, we can either grow closer to God, or go our own way. Our Lord never promised us perfect happiness in this life, but the grace to endure. The way of the cross is the way to salvation. Our God said: “Take up your cross and follow Me.” Suffering for the Christian is transformative. It can make us more like Christ, if we accept it out of love for Him. Suffering can also be used for the good of souls. We all remember what the good Sisters said in the past: “Offer it up!” We call that redemptive suffering. Suffering is the greatest power we have. “I offer this (suffering) for the end of abortions, for troubled marriages, for the conversion of sinners.” Whatever it may be, our suffering has the ability to move the heart of Christ. As we continue on our 54 day pilgrimage, let us unite our daily sufferings with our prayers. May we help “make up what is lacking in the sufferings of Christ.” And like us give thanks, for we are collaborators with Christ for the salvation of the world.
“If God gives you an abundant harvest of trials, it is a sign of great holiness which He desires you to attain. Do you want to become a great saint? Ask God to send you many sufferings. The flame of Divine Love never rises higher than when fed with the wood of the Cross, which the infinite charity of the Savior used to finish His sacrifice. All the pleasures of the world are nothing compared with the sweetness found in the gall and vinegar offered to Jesus Christ. That is, hard and painful things endured for Jesus Christ and with Jesus Christ.” – Saint Ignatius of Loyola
“Suffering is a great grace; through suffering the soul becomes like the Savior; in suffering love becomes crystallized; the greater the suffering, the purer the love. – Diary of St. Faustina, 57
“If you really want to love Jesus, first learn to suffer, because suffering teaches you to love.”– St. Gemma Galgani
The Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary
Prayer before the recitation: Sign of the cross. Hail Mary.
In petition (first 27 days): Hail, Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, my Mother Mary, hail! At thy feet I humbly kneel to offer thee a Crown of Roses, snow white buds to remind thee of thy joys, each bud recalling to thee a holy mystery, each 10 bound together with my petition for a particular grace. O Holy Queen, dispenser of God’s graces, and Mother of all who invoke thee, thou canst not look upon my gift and fail to see its binding. As thou receivest my gift, so wilt thou receive my petition; from thy bounty thou wilt give me the favor I so earnestly and trustingly seek. I despair of nothing that I ask of thee. Show thyself my Mother!
Say: The Apostles’ Creed, Our Father, 3 Hail Marys, Glory Be.
The Annunciation – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.
Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of humility and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.
The Visitation – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.
Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of charity and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.
The Nativity – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.
Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of detachment from the world and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.
The Presentation – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.
Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of purity and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.
Finding the Child Jesus in the Temple – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.
Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of obedience to the will of God and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.
Say: The Hail Holy Queen.
In petition (first 27 days): Sweet Mother Mary, I offer thee this spiritual communion to bind my bouquets in a wreath to place upon thy brow. O my Mother! Look with favor upon my gift, and in thy love obtain for me (specify request). Hail Mary …
For the spiritual and temporal needs of Holy Ghost Parish, and the personal intentions of all praying this novena. (Add your own personal intentions.)