SAINT PHILOMENA’S YOUTH FOR PURITY
St. Philomena carries a message to the world which is absolutely critical to our Age. Today, every possible influence is being exerted to destroy the purity of the young and the old. For us to remain silent in this matter is criminal! According to modern psychology, sin is not sin and virtue is weakness rather than strength. God supplies to every century a saintly model that suits its particular needs. He saw clearly that the most prevalent sin in our Age is sensuality. To recall the modern world to its sense of duty to Him, He sent to it the soul of a saint who was the embodiment of the virtue opposite of this vice, PURITY! God exalted her quickly and gifted her with miracles. The fame of St. Philomena spread throughout the whole world like a bushfire. Everyone who calls on St. Philomena is helped.
We are on the battle field facing the enemies of purity and we are bound by the iron-clad law: Either FIGHT or DIE! St. Philomena resolved that nothing in this world would divert her from her true destiny which was Heaven. Let us, too, make the resolve that nothing in the world will divert us from our duty to God, Who is our sole reason for existence and Who will be our Judge and reward.
Death is coming! It is really coming near with appalling suddenness. Are we prepared and ready for death should it come today? In that hour, we will be separated from life, from the world, from property, riches and family. All is left behind save two things: the sins we have committed and the good works
Man has forgotten God! He goes from one care in life to another, occupied night and day between the fevered quest of the twin prizes: Money and Pleasure. If we leave God out of our lives and suppose that death is the only result of life, why live at all! For Christians, life is not a hopeless riddle. Thank God for our precious Catholic Faith which teaches us the fundamental purpose of our life here on earth:
God made me to know, love and serve Him in this life,
These two truths contain the whole sum of wisdom for they are more important to us than anything else in the world. Our happiness here on earth and our Eternity of happiness depend largely on how firmly we grasp these truths. We are free to fulfill God’s purpose in our creation or refuse to serve Him. The chief test for our fitness for Heaven is the test of purity.
We can measure the terrible nature of sin by the losses it entails. Deliberate sins against purity are mortal for, through them, a soul is slain, the Grace of God is forfeited, Heaven is closed and Hell is opened. The first consequence of sin is that the unhappy creature, who thus falls, no longer cares to pray and gives up daily devotions. He begins to doubt whether there really is a God or Eternity. In false shame, sins are concealed in the confessional, thus rendering his Confessions and Communions sacrilegious. Hardness of heart sets in and the understanding is darkened. We must have confidence in God, call upon Him and rely upon His help, avoid all idleness and fly from all persons, places and things which are a temptation to sin. We must avoid those substances which weaken our will to say NO to sin, dress modestly, shield our eyes from nakedness and seek goodness, truth and beauty.
The world seeks to destroy not only our purity but also our very belief in purity. Familiarity between the sexes, nudity, free love, taking partners, divorce, movies, bad companions and constant media exposure open our soul, day and night, to the filth of impurity. Our adversary is paganism. Not the old paganism which worshipped idols, but the new paganism that worships SELF! It makes man a law unto himself, which denies that man has a soul and a free will. The modern world does not believe in God or life after death.
By the Sixth Commandment, we are commanded to be pure men and women, to live good lives, wholesome, clean, noble, virtuous and consistent with our dignity as men endowed with immortal souls and stamped with God’s image and likeness. We are to live the noble life of a Christian, be followers of Christ, children of God and future inhabitants of Heaven. Our life is to be consistent with our dignity as a tabernacle of Our Lord, Jesus Christ, in Holy Communion. That Christian man should live the life of an animal is a contradiction and a catastrophe. Purity, then, in thought, word and deed is commanded of us by the Sixth Commandment.
What does the Sixth Commandment forbid?
Adultery means the sexual union of two people, at least one of whom is married to a third person. Fornication is the sexual union of two persons who are single. Neither fornicators nor adulterers shall possess the Kingdom of God.
All sins of impurity and immodesty, all external actions contrary to holy purity are forbidden: all impure words, desires and thoughts. God forbids anything that can sully the purity of our bodies, minds or souls. He forbids absolutely, unconditionally, at all times, in all places and under all circumstances, any impure act whether committed with another or alone. God’s standard for men and women is identical. Is this command difficult? It is the most difficult of all the Commandments. It is the chief test to which God puts man to determine his fitness for Heaven. Unless we make use of the means God gives us to observe this Commandment, we will not succeed.
Very many sins against the Sixth Commandment are committed neither in cold blood nor in overwhelming passion, but as a result of certain moods we fall into. If you find yourself sulking, fidgety, cranky or childish, learn to pull up quickly. Resist these moods by doing the opposite of what they suggest. This will be for you a very healthy form of conquest and self-denial.
IMMACULATE VIRGIN, reawaken in us an awareness of the malice of sin and of the pain it caused thy Son so that, by prayer and penance, we may weep for our own sins and frequently wash our soul in the most Precious Blood of Jesus through the Sacrament of Penance.
OUR FATHER, WHO ART IN HEAVEN, HALLOWED BE THY NAME!
We call God ‘Father’ because He created us. But, God has actually given to man the astonishing power to be a father too; God shares His creative power with a man and a woman to call into existence His children. As the tiny body of the child is formed by the parents, God breathes into it an immortal soul. Try to realize the dignity and nobility of fatherhood and motherhood. It is a power given by God that must not be tampered with. Sex is used for the purpose of begetting children and must be surrounded with the most profound respect and reverence. It is noble. When sex is misused, this beautiful God-given instinct is turned into an instrument of pleasure and it is the pleasure that is worshiped, the pleasure that is set up as god. For many, it is a means of recreation not the procreation of the children of God. To God, they say, “I WILL NOT SERVE!” When we profane our bodies, we profane what is sacred in God’s sight. When we profane our bodies, we actually commit as great a sacrilege as one who profanes a church or altar. The body which the Holy Spirit animates must partake of His Holiness.
Today, unbridled passion is called love. IT IS NOT LOVE! It is stark naked lust. It is wrong to tamper with truth, it is wrong to squander money, it is wrong to ruin the name of another; but can you tell me, it is not wrong to tamper with the means to create life, not wrong to cheapen love and to squander God’s creative power? Can it be right to say that sins against life and love do not matter? The sin against sex is a sin against life, a sin against God. It is a sin that God punishes even in this life. Lust is no substitute for love! Good God, what damnable liars these men and women are when they defend this sin! To be modest, one must build for himself a strong Christian character, a life dominated by principles: Frequent Prayer, Frequent Confession and Frequent Communion.
Daily spiritual reading will bring to mind the great religious truths of our Faith. Daily self-denial, habitual reflection and fervent prayer make us strong to resist temptation. Prayer is not to be delayed to the moment of temptation, when it is too late, but daily we must ask God to give us strength when the moment of temptation comes.
MODESTY – The Guardian of Chastity!
“The sins that lead most souls to Hell are sins of the flesh!
The words of the Blessed Virgin Mary to Blessed Jacinta Marto – in 1917, Fatima
Frequent Confession will help us to develop a conscience which is sensitive to sin. Frequent Communion will make the soul strong just as food taken will help make the body strong. Daily spiritual reading will increase our knowledge and love of God. The Third Person of the Most Blessed Trinity comes to take up His abode within us at the time of Baptism, and dwells habitually within us until we drive Him out by mortal sin.
“If a man will come after Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow Me!”
Our generation is given over to excesses. They have never been taught discipline nor have they learned obedience. Harried parents have given into self-indulgence and, for a peace which is false, they have allowed the defiant child to have his way at every turn. The child will not obey, he will not study and his every wish for food, snacks, movies, money and video games is gratified; if not at first, then after a series of nagging cries, he gets his way. He has never been taught to sacrifice, deny himself and develop self-control. At the root of all sin and, most especially, the sin of impurity, is the absence of self-control. To obey the Will of God and to avoid all forms of excess, self-denial is necessary and training in self-denial should begin at the earliest possible age.
We make the sacrifice of self-denial not only for the salvation of our own soul but also for those in danger, today, of dying in mortal sin. My dear friends, there is a pestilence about us to which hundreds of thousands are succumbing each day. When a pestilence is raging, it is the duty of the parent and the pastor to warn the people against it. The pestilence is the sin of impurity! It is as necessary to practice prayer and self-denial with regularity as it is to have two wings to fly. Self-denial means moderation in all things, resignation without grumbling, control of temper, tongue and all impulses, refusal to read what is impure or watch any video or movie which contains impurity of speech, action or dress, sitcoms which ridicule family life or religion and glorify unbridled license. It means that we should, every day, do something that is hard and disagreeable. Self-denial is the business of training the will to choose God over creatures, Heaven over Hell, Goodness over Evil!
FLY TO THE HEART OF MARY!
The Heart of Mary is the mirror of God and the masterpiece of His creation, the Living Tabernacle of the Blessed Trinity. The daily rhythm of the Rosary, that calm solitude of prayer, opens to us the mercy of God. The Mother of Jesus leads us along the high road of suffering and pain to union with her Divine Son, quietly refining and shaping our soul. Prayer obtains all. The Heart of Mary is there, let us knock! The grace of purity will be given to us if we persevere in asking for it. In the Heart of Mary, we will find courage and strength. In her Heart, we will be nourished and protected.
Mary is in anguish for Her children in sin. A mother weeps to see her child suffer; she is deeply distressed when the child is in grave danger. God’s own Mother will keep Her vigil through the dark night at the bedside of all Her mortally wounded children who have been separated from God’s Grace due to sin. Mary came to Lourdes and Fatima, to plead with us to pray the Rosary and do penance for sinners. We must fly from temptation and seek refuge in this Grotto Divine!
With Mary, let us advance on this Pilgrimage of faith that we may arrive at our destination pure in body and soul and be greeted with these words: “Well done, good and faithful servant! Enter into the Kingdom that has been prepared for thee.”
PARENT’S CONSECRATION OF THEIR CHILDREN TO ST. PHILOMENA
O Saint Philomena, we place our children in thy keeping. Illustrious Virgin, who so thoroughly understood the excellence of purity, keep their souls pure and holy in the sight of God. Wise young maiden, who so fully comprehended the infinite value of eternal treasures and the shallowness of temporal riches and power, instruct our children in the value of things spiritual. Assist them in building up rich treasures in the store-house of Heaven, where their wealth can neither be destroyed nor taken from them.
Courageous Martyr, who died in torment rather than offend the All-Good God, teach our children a true horror of sin and a love of true virtue. We implore thee, St. Philomena to obtain for them the courage to suffer persecution and tortures bravely rather than to deny Almighty God.
We ask these favors with complete confidence, St. Philomena, because we know that thou, who gave all to God, can obtain all from Him and we are sure that thou wouldst never refuse to hear the prayer of parents who implore thy help for the eternal salvation of their children. Amen.
|THE ROBE OF CONSOLATION
Behold Jesus before us, hanging on the Cross. See His gentle, sorrowful Face. His Heart aches because so many for whom He is dying have rejected His goodness and love. Will we reject Him too? Before we answer, let us listen to His words from the Cross, “I thirst.” He is speaking to us. He thirsts for us, do we thirst for Him? Beg from Him this grace. Jesus thirsts for our love and He wants our help. Will we help Him? Let us take a moment now to consider what He has given us. He created us in love, washed away our sins with His Blood, clothed us with His divine Life, and prepares a place for us in His Father’s House that we might dwell with Him for all Eternity. And, there is more. Jesus wants to share with us His mission. He wants our help to bring everyone back Home to His Father. This, too, is His gift to us. Will we accept it? He is counting on our help. He needs us. Many refuse the Love of Jesus and they refuse the gift of His mission. Will we refuse it? Let us believe in His Love and say ‘YES’ to His Will for our lives. Turn to Mary. She knows how to say ‘YES’ to God and She will help us. Mary, my Mother, please be with me now. Help me to have the courage and love not to be a disappointment to Jesus.
Jesus, I thirst for Thee! Form me into a saint.