Saturday, August 24, 2013

50 Days of Prayer

The work of the Fraternity is consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of MaryOn October 13, 2013, Pope Francis will consecrate the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary at a ceremony in Rome at which the statue of Mary from Fatima will be present.

Mary, in her title as the Immaculate Heart, is the patroness of the Fraternity of St. Genesius, a spiritual association which prays for those in the theatrical and cinematic arts.  Her co-patron is, of course, St. Genesius, patron saint of actors and one of the few people in the history of show business to behave with personal integrity (a rare commodity in this industry) and with supreme devotion to Jesus Christ (even rarer) - devotion to the point of martyrdom.  (I tell the story of St. Genesius here at this link).

The feast day of St. Genesius is August 25.  There are exactly fifty days between the feast day of my patron (which he shares with St. Louis the King, patron of my home diocese) and the date of the World Wide Consecration, inclusive of both dates.

Fifty is the number of Pentecost and is symbolic of the Incarnation - of the presence of God in the world.

Thus I propose fifty days of preparation and prayer, which I will enter into and which I invite my readers to enter into.

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The Plan

I will be posting a daily prayer and mediation from Aug. 25 to Oct. 13 (God willing).  I encourage you to read the daily entries and to pray along with me, and to use them as tidbits to inspire your own private prayer and public acts.

The Goal

The aim is to get closer to Jesus, and to do so through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, his greatest disciple and our spiritual mother.

Objections
  • "I am an atheist and I think this religious stuff is hogwash".  I know I have a few atheist readers, and I was an atheist myself for many years.  Read along anyway and see if the philosophy implied in the posts, or if the meditation upon the nature of reality that we will engage in, appeals to you or provokes you.
  • "I am a Protestant and I am very suspect of anything having to do with Mary".  Then focus on Jesus, which is what Mary is all about, anyway.  Having an Immaculate Heart is having a heart devoted to Him, a heart undivided by sin.  That's our goal.  Our goal is to get to Jesus through Mary, as our goal is to get to the Father through the Son.
  • "I am a Catholic and I can't stand you or your blog."  Welcome to the club.  Pray with us anyway.

Suggestions

Add to your prayer and meditation some form of fasting or self-denial.

Comment in the comment box of any particular post if you think you have something to share that will edify others and build up the Body of Christ (Eph. 4:12).

Be prepared for attacks from the world, the flesh and the devil as you prepare for the Consecration.  This will happen, and it may be unsettling.

If you miss a day, just hop on in anyway.  I will post links at the upper right of the blog to facilitate finding the daily posts.

One More Objection

"But I know you and I know this blog!  You're a sinner!  A filthy dark-hearted sinner who has no business leading others in prayer!"

There is no answer to that objection other than, "I agree completely."

But we're all in the same boat, so let's pray anyway, and ask for the grace to repent of our sins and become more like Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  I am not proposing that I lead anybody, but that I point us toward the Holy Spirit, who will be leading all of us.  And let us take up our cross and follow Him.

Details of the Plan

I will alternate posts that reflect upon the mysteries of the Rosary (including five additional mysteries that I call the Genesian Mysteries or the Hidden Mysteries) with quotations and reflections from Scripture - 25 mysteries and 25 Scripture passages to make up the 50 days, with a daily prayer that we pray in the Fraternity.

The five additional "Hidden Mysteries" are 1. The Immaculate Conception; 2. The Hidden Life of Jesus; 3. The Pieta; 4. The Conversion of St. Paul; 5. The Second Coming of Christ.  I have been praying these for a while, and members of the Fraternity of St. Genesius pray the Hidden Life of Jesus daily.

Conclusion

Again, I hope you find this helpful.  If not, just ignore the posts and find other more effective ways to pray that work better for you.

Holy Spirit, bless our spiritual endeavor!







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