Friday, May 6, 2011
Thursday, May 5, 2011
He was sitting—so runs the story—with some of his  monks in the cell of Bethlehem, when a lion entered the open door. The brethren all jumped up in a fright, and tumbled as fast as they could through the window, while Jerome stayed quietly in his chair and waited. The lion looked at him doubtfully for a moment, then limped towards him, holding up a paw. This Jerome took, and examined carefully. At first he could see nothing, the soft pad was so badly swollen; but at length he detected a thorn, near one of the nails, and managed to pull it out with a pair of pinchers. He next boiled some water, in which he soaked some dried herbs, and bathed the sore place till the swelling began to go down, when he tied a linen rag round it, so that the dirt might not get in and inflame the wound afresh. As soon as he had finished, and the look of pain had disappeared from the lion's eyes, Jerome expected him to depart, but instead the huge beast stretched himself out comfortably on the floor. Jerome pointed to the door; the lion wagged his tail happily, and took no notice. This happened several times, till at last Jerome gave up the struggle and went to bed, the lion on the floor sleeping beside him. Next morning Jerome said to this visitor: "You seem to intend to live for ever in my cell"—the lion wagged his tail again—"but learn that no one here spends his time in idleness. If you stay here, you must be ready to work"—the tail wagged a second time—"and you will therefore accompany my donkey daily to the forest to defend her from robbers and savage wolves, when she brings back the firewood needful for the monastery."
THE LION REFUSES TO DEPART.
So for many months the lion and the donkey might have been seen setting off side by side every morning to the forest, and the lion lay down and watched while an old man heaped up the donkey's panniers from the stack of wood which he had gathered in readiness. The work took some time, but when the panniers could hold  no more the donkey gave itself a shake, and the lion jumped up, waiting till she began to move. The journey back to the monastery was much slower than the one to the forest, as the donkey had to be very careful not to make a false step. If she had stumbled and fallen, she would have found it very difficult, with her loaded panniers, to get on her feet again, and even the lion could not have helped her.
But one morning a terrible thing happened. The sun was very hot, and when the lion lay down as usual he fell sound asleep, and never heard two men creep up behind the old man and the donkey and tie a cloth over the mouths of both man and beast, so that they could not utter a sound. Then the robbers drove them away, wood and all, to the caravan which was waiting at a little distance.
At last the lion awoke, and gave a great yawn, and stretched himself. He lay still for a few minutes, till suddenly he noticed that the shafts of light that fell through the trees, struck the ground in a different way from usual.
"It must be later than I thought," he said; "they never look like that till the sun is going to set. Has the donkey been waiting for me all this time? Poor thing, how tired she must be! But why didn't she wake me?" and he rose to his feet and turned towards the old man's hut, but no donkey was there.
"She must have gone home," he said to himself again; "but then—where is the old man?" and bending his head, he examined the soil carefully.
"These are human footprints, I am sure they are," he exclaimed in his own language; "more than one man has been here. And here are the donkey's. She was stolen while I was asleep, and I, who was set to guard her, have been unfaithful to my trust! How shall I face the holy father who cured my wound?"
 However, there was no use waiting or trying to track the lost donkey; the thieves had got too long a start, and with bent head and heavy heart the lion followed the road home, and entered, as he had done once before, the cell of his master.
"Wherefore are you here, and where is the donkey?" asked Jerome sternly. In answer, the lion bowed himself to the earth, with his tail between his legs, awaiting his sentence.
"I had faith in you, and you have put me to shame," continued Jerome, "and as it is quite plain that you have eaten the donkey, you must take her place, and for the future the panniers will be put upon your back, and it is you who will fetch the wood from the forest."
And the lion, when he heard, wagged his tail in relief, for he had been very much afraid that his master would send him away altogether.
Now it was at the end of the summer that the donkey had been stolen, and as soon as the spring came round the caravan went past again, the camels laden with swords and silks from Damascus for the cities of Egypt. The lion was standing behind a group of trees, while another old man was piling up the panniers with wood, when the crackling of twigs caused him to turn round, and a little way off he beheld the long train of ugly, swaying creatures, with the donkey walking at their head. At the sight of his friend he gave a bound forward, which knocked over the old man, and sent the wood flying in all directions, and so frightened the camel-drivers that they ran away to hide themselves. As to the rest of the caravan he drove them before him into the monastery, keeping his eye carefully on the riders; and if anyone's hand so much as moved towards his side where his short sword was buckled, the lion had only to growl and to show his teeth for the hand quickly to move away again.
 In this manner they proceeded till the monastery was reached, and Jerome who was seated in his cell, unfolding the copy of a new book, beheld their arrival with astonishment. What were all these people doing here, and why was the lion with them? And surely that was—yes, he was certain of it—his old donkey, which he imagined was dead months ago. So he hastened out of his cell to the court-yard, where the merchants, who by this time had dismounted from their camels, fell on their knees before him.
"O holy father, if you are the lord of this lion, bid him spare our lives, and we will confess our sin," they cried. "It was we who stole the donkey, while her guardian, the lion, was sleeping; and behold, gladly will we restore her to you, if we may go our way."
"It is well, go in peace," said Jerome, and the merchants needed no second bidding.
Joyful indeed was the donkey to be at home again; and the next day she got up early and trotted off to the forest by the side of the lion, throwing up her head and sniffing the air as she went, from very delight at being freed from captivity. And the heart of Jerome rejoiced likewise that, after all, his trust in the lion had not been in vain.
That is the story of the lion of St. Jerome.
1.O my Jesus, Thou said "Verily I say unto you, ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened to you", behold I knock, I seek and I ask for the grace of ..... (Pater, Ave, Gloria)
Sacred Heart of Jesus I put all my trust in Thee.
2.O my Jesus, Thou said "Verily I say unto you, whatever you shall ask the Father in My Name, He will give it to you", behold in Thy Name I ask the Father for the grace of ..... (Pater, Ave, Gloria) Sacred Heart of Jesus I put all my trust in Thee.
3.O my Jesus, Thou said "Verily I say unto you. Heaven and earth shall pass away but My words shall not pass away" behold I encouraged by Thy infallible words, now ask for the grace of ..... (Pater, Ave, Gloria)
Sacred Heart of Jesus I put all my trust in Thee.
O Sacred Heart of Jesus, to whom one thing alone is impossible, namely not to have compassion on the afflicted, have pity on us miserable sinners and grant us the grace which we ask of Thee through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, Thy and our tender Mother.
Recite the 'Hail Holy Queen' and add, 'St. Joseph, foster Father of Jesus, pray for us'
(This novena prayer was recited by Padre Pio, everyday)
Litany of the Sacred Heart
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy;
Christ, hear us,
Christ, graciously hear us,
God, the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us
God the Holy Spirit, Have mercy on us
Holy Trinity one God, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, Son of the Eternal Father, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, formed by the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Virgin Mother, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, hypostatically united to the Word of God, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, infinite in majesty, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, holy temple of God, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, Tabernacle of the most High, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, house of God and gate of heaven, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, glowing furnace of charity, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, abode of justice and love, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, full of kindness and love, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, abyss of all virtues, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, most worthy of all praise, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, King and centre of all hearts, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, wherein are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, wherein abides all the fullness of the Godhead, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, in whom the Father was well pleased, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, of whose fullness we have all received, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, desire of the eternal hills, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, patient and abounding in mercy, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, rich unto all who call upon Thee, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, source of life and holiness, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, atonement for our iniquities, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, overwhelmed with reproaches, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, bruised for our sins, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, made obedient even unto death, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, pierced by the lance, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, source of all consolation, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, our life and resurrection, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, our peace and reconciliation, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, Victim of sins, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, salvation of all who trust in Thee, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, hope of all who die in Thee, Have mercy on us
Heart of Jesus, delight of all the Saints, Have mercy on us
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
Let Us Pray
O Almighty and Eternal God, look upon the Heart of Thy dearly beloved Son, and upon the praise and satisfaction He offers Thee in the name of sinners and for those who seek Thy mercy; be Thee appeased, and grant us pardon in the Name of the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son,
Who livest and reignest with Thee in the unity of the Holy Spirit for ever and ever. Amen.
" Come, Holy Spirit "
O Holy Spirit, Soul of my soul, I adore thee. Enlighten, guide, strengthen and console me. Tell me what I ought to do and command me to do it. I promise to be submissive in everything that thou shalt ask of me and to accept all that thou permits to happen to me, only show me what is thy will.
If you do this, your life will pass happily and serenely. Consolations will abound even in the midst of trouble, for grace will be given in proportion to the trial, as well as strength to bear it, bringing you to the gates of paradise full of merit. This submission to the Holy Spirit is the secret to sanctity.