There is not a single person who cannot easily reach the highest degree of perfection by performing every duty, no matter how commonplace, with eager love... The duties of each moment are the shadows beneath which hides the divine operation.
Unite prayer to your normal routine
- Fast – fast on bread and water; eat only one meal a day; fast from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., etc.
- Fast from all technology one day a week.
- Deny yourself dessert on set days. Most of us eat too much sugar anyway.
- Skip salt on your food.
- Fast from TV for a few days or a week.
- Don’t eat between meals. This sounds easy but try it. You’ll find it’s quite hard since most of us snack frequently and don’t even realize it.
- Pray the Rosary daily – all four mysteries if you can
- Attend Holy Hour Prayer Vigils
- Recite the Divine Mercy Chaplet daily
- Consecrate yourself to the Immaculate Heart of Mary & Sacred Heart of Jesus
- Attend Holy Mass daily
- Perform Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy
- Talk to your Pastor and Priest requesting that they hold Eucharistic Adoration, Holy Hours, Rosary Vigils, Novenas and/or other devotions during the International Week of Prayer and Fasting. Tell them you will help with this!
- Make copies of our flyer advertising the campaign and ask your pastor’s permission to distribute the flyers in your church’s weekly bulletin. Give copies to family, friends, and members of your prayer group
- Ask your parish’s prayer groups, the Knights of Columbus and other groups to organize Prayer and Rosary Vigils.
- Contact your local Pro-Life groups and ask them to promote the nine-day period by including the flyer in their publications.
- Contact your local Catholic bookstore. Ask them to display the flyers in their stores to help spread the word to their customers.
- Contact your diocese and the religious editors of your local newspapers. Ask them to include the flyer and publicity about the Prayer Campaign in their publications.
- Sponsor a school Pro-Life Mass; invite pro-life and/or chastity speakers
- Have Catholic school students be involved in the nine-day period of prayer for our country
We are enabled to make our lives (and each moment of our lives) a prayerful sacrifice by understanding that God reveals Himself through the daily events, possibilities, restrictions, cares and sufferings of our ordinary life, and striving more and more to fully recognize and accept His merciful will in every situation.
This fundamental truth of the Catholic Faith is present in both the foundation and the soaring heights of sanctity. As God is both the source and the final purpose of our lives, so in this practical spirituality, we are assisted in making each choice an offering that draws it's strength from Him (it's source) and offers Him back a loving sacrifice (it's final purpose).
All prayer is implicitly a petition for the light to know God's will and the strength to put it into action. This hidden and beautiful practice is a living out of that prayer in each moment.
An Aspiration prayer is a secret and sudden lifting up of the soul's desires to God, upon any emergency that may occur in Providence. One may engage in this prayer by a simple thought darted up to heaven or by words uttered in the mind. It helps us to maintain fellowship with God, without any interruption of our daily tasks. It is also a means to repel sudden temptations, and to dispose our hearts to a more solemn performance of our duties.
Aspirations of Love to Jesus Christ:
Spiritual Practice: Cultivate the habit of often using the name "Jesus," in silent prayer. When you get up in the morning and retire at night, invoke His Holy Name. And during the day, learn to associate whatever you are doing with a moment's prayerful aspiration, pronouncing the word "Jesus."
If you do this, you will not only grow in your belief that Jesus is indeed God who became man, you will experience the spiritual power that is available to those who call upon Him in faith.
-Saint Alphonsus De Liguori, Doctor of the Church
My Jesus, Thou alone art sufficient for me. MY love, do not permit me to separate myself from Thee. When shall I be able to say, "My God, I cannot lose thee any more?"
"All for Thee, dear Lord."
'My Jesus, have mercy!'
'The Word was made flesh.'
'My Jesus, my Love! Let Your will be done in me.'
'Jesus, help me.'
'Sacred Heart of Jesus, I have confidence in Thee, boundless confidence for everything.'
'Jesus, Mary, Joseph, be my Salvation.'
'Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.' (Known as The Jesus Prayer)
'My God & my all!'
'Jesus, Mary, I love You. Save souls.'
'God, come to my assistance; Lord, make haste to help me.'
'May the Holy Cross be my light.' (Jubilee Medal of St. Benedict)
'Be gone, Satan! Suggest not to me thy vain things. The cup thou profferest me is evil; drink thou thy poison.' (Jubilee Medal of St. Benedict)
'Comfort me, Mother of God !'
'May each created object, O Lord, be to my eyes a glass, wherein I may behold Thy countenance, and be admonished of Thy presence'
'Mary, Mother of God, Pray for us sinners!'
'Jesus, I trust in thee'
'Make me all Thine before I die.'
'Stay with us, O Lord'
'May, O Lord, the light of Thy countenance shine upon us'
'My God, I offer you all my work'
'My God, I love you'
'My God, I wish for Thee alone, and nothing more.'
'May my only happiness be to please Thee, O Infinite Goodness.'
'I give You my will, my liberty; dispose of me as You please.'
'Thou art omnipotent; make me a Saint.'
'May I die rather than ever offend Thee again.'
'O God of love, give me love.'
'Lord, who am I, that Thou shouldst desire so much to be loved by me?'
'Thou didst give Thyself all to me; I give myself all to Thee.'
The Pilgrim Queen of the Family is a network of Catholic families united by the desire to live and share the Gospel and to promote the devotion of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The importance of praying together, especially the Holy Rosary, is paramount in our lives now. Our world and our individual lives need Our Lady's intercession, always united in praying for the Church and Pope's intentions, vocations, families and friends.
Fasting or self-denial
Sacrifice in the context of Catholic spirituality can be understood as the voluntary offering of something precious to God. The Most precious thing that we possess is our own self-will. Understanding this can have a profound effect on spiritual progress in our day to day lives.
We all make countless choices every day. Most of them are influenced by our own preferences and dispositions and they become choices of self-will. This is not necessarily bad (so long as those choices aren't immoral) but we can offer these little choices to God as a sacrifice.
What does this look like? It starts with considering the little choices we make. We can ask ourselves questions throughout the day like, "What will I drink at this meal?" or, "What will I wear today?" We can then choose that which both God and I know I do not enjoy or prefer. Again we could ask, "What will I do after work?" Perhaps I can choose that little task I have been avoiding because I find it disagreeable.
All of this done with a heart of devotion to God leads one to live a more prayerful and charitable life. During these nine days prayerfully offer the little choices of self-denial you make for the conversion of America and of our world. These little offerings to God are humble and pleasing to Him and will draw down His mercy upon our country and upon the world.
God has made us to know and to love. Because of this, we have been given a deep desire for knowledge and the communion of shared understanding. We speak that we may be known, that our ideas and thoughts might be understood. This desire is powerful and constant but this capacity can be deeply misused.
Words can destroy by cruelty and can darken by deceit. Much evil in the world has been the result of words that should have been left unspoken and God is offended by sins of the unrestrained tongue.
Because the impulse to speak is so powerful in most people, we are enabled to make a special sacrifice of self-denial in restraining our speech. This does not mean that we are always silent but rather that we offer all useless speech.
This means asking oneself throughout the day, "Am I helping this person by saying what I am about to say?" If the answer is no, remain silent. In this way, we are enabled to edify our neighbor, grow in virtue by self-denial, and please our Lord by offering him something very dear to us.