"And I beheld, and heard the voice of one eagle flying through the midst of heaven,
saying with a loud voice: Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitants of the earth....
[Apocalypse (Revelation) 8:13]

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Happy Feast Day! St. Alphonsus Liguori, August 2

Happy Feast Day! St. Alphonsus Liguori, August 2

In memory of one of the greatest theologians and Saints of Christ's Catholic Church I would like all to be reminded of his poetic gifts as well. A few of his sample works followed by a closing prayer. St. Alphonsus Liguori, ora pro nobis!

Select Hymns/Poems of St. Alphonsus Liguori:

The Soul sighing for Jesus.

This heart of mine is sighing, 
And yet I know not why;
Its sighs with love are laden,
But whither do they fly?
My trembling heart, oh, tell me, 
Wherefore these burning sighs 
“I sigh for God, I languish for Jesus” it replies.
Sigh on, my heart, and cease not 
With sighs of love to swell; 
Spend all thy life in loving 
Him who loves thee so well.
Sigh on, and let thy Jesus 
Alone possess thy breast, 
And all thy hope in Mary 
With childlike spirit  rest.
Send forth thy sighs like arrows
To wound thy conqu’ror’ s heart
Then hope for gifts the choicest
His goodness can impart.
My trembling sighs, ah, hasten, 
To Jesus haste away;
Then at his feet take refuge, 
And there forever stay.
Say that a heart all burning 
With love has sent you there; 
And ask what it shall bid you, 
For he will grant its prayer.
 Hymn from the Way of Salvation
Let me but see Thy beauty nigh, 
Then,   if   Thou   wilt,  then  let  me  die. 
Ah ! let me speak, great God above ! 
Thou knowest all, save how to love;
For Thou art pitiless to me, 
A heart that loves and pleases Thee.
If, then, so great Thy love has been,
Why pierce my heart with dart so keen,
And leave me thus in bitter pain, 
Apart from Thee to pine in vain?
Ah ! cruel, cruel One ! but no, 
Beloved! yes, I call Thee so ;
Thou knowst my one, one only thought
Is but to please Thee as I ought. 
Tis love thus leads my tongue astray ; 
Senseless, I know not what I say: 
That piercing dart of charity
Makes me thus mad through love of Thee. 
Dear object of my love alone,
Thou one, one only love I own;
My God ! my All ! O Loveliness ! 
My Good, my Life, my Happiness !
My Treasure ! ah ! what can I do,
Thy sweet and noble heart to woo?
Oh, speak, and tell me how I may 
Thy love with my poor love repay. 
Twere little in love s fiercest fire
For Thee to languish of desire ;
Nor pain nor death could pay the debt; 
To be consumed were little yet. 
And now, since words can say no more, 
Accept, Beloved, I implore,
This unreserved gift from me, 
All, all I am I give to Thee.
A Prayer
 O my Glorious and well-beloved patron, Saint Alphonsus, thou who didst toil and suffer so abundantly to assure to men the fruits of the Redemption, behold the miseries of my poor soul and have pity on me. By thy powerful intercession with Jesus and Mary, obtain for me true repentance for my sins together with their pardon and remission, a deep hatred of sin and strength evermore to resist all temptations. Share with me, I pray, at least a spark of that fire of love wherewith they heart did ever burn; and grant that, following thy example, I may make the will of God the only rule of my life. Obtain for me likewise a fervent and lasting love of Jesus, and a tender and childlike devotion to Mary, together with the grace to pray without ceasing and to persevere in the service of God even to the end of my life, that so I may finally be united with thee in praising God and most holy Mary through all eternity. Amen

(A plenary indulgence on the usual conditions if this prayer is said devoutly every day for a month.)
Taken from the 1957 edition, The Raccolta Published by Benziger Brothers and Reprinted by St Athanasius Press 2003.

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