Novena To Our Lady Of Perpetual Help. Day 8
ACT OF CONTRITION
My Lord Jesus Christ, true God and true man, my father and redeemer, behold at Thy feet a poor sinner who has so grievously afflicted Thy loving Heart. O lovable Jesus, how could i have offended thee and filled with bitterness that Heart that love me so and that has spared no effort to attain my love? How great has been my in gratitude! But, O my saviour, be consoled, be consoled, I say to thee; now i find myself repentant, such grief i feel for the afflictions i have caused thee, that i would like to die of poor sorrow and contrition. O my Jesus! who could have make me weep for sin as Thou hast wept for them in Thy mortal life! My soul is oppressed for having offended Thee. Eternal father, in satisfaction for my offences I offer Thee the affliction and sorrow the Heart of Thy Divine Son has felt for them. And Thou, O Loving Jesus! give me such a horror for sin that from now on it may make me avoid even the most trifling of faults. Depart from my heart, earthly affections; I do not want to love anything now but my most bountiful Redeemer. O my Jesus, help me, strengthen me, and pardon me.
My Mother of perpetual help, intercede for me and obtain for me the pardon of my sins.
(To be said everyday)
O Most Blessed Virgin Mary! Who to inspire us with boundless confidence has been pleased to take the sweet name of Mother of Perpetual help, I implore Thee to come to my aid always and everywhere, in my temptations, after my falls, in my difficulties, in all the miseries of life, and above all, at the hour of my death. Give me, O loving Mother, the desire, nay more, the habit always to have recourse to Thee, for i feel assured that if i am faithful in invoking Thee, Thou will be faithful in coming to my assistance. Obtain for me, then, this grace of graces, the grace to pray to Thee without ceasing, and with childlike trust, that, by means of my constant plea, I may ensure Thy Perpetual Help and final perseverance. Bless me, O tender and solicitous Mother, pray for me now and at the hour of my death. Amen
EIGHTH DAY MEDITATION
Our Lady of Perpetual Help assists Her devotees at the hour of
Consider that, although man needs the benign help of Mary at all times, and in all circumstances, never, however, as much as in the anxieties of death, which are the greatest that can be experienced in this world.
Terrible, indeed, very terrible, are the afflictions of the dying. Everything conspires to make those last moments terrible: the memory of sins committed, the fear of the incomprehensible judgements of an offended God, the uncertainty of eternal salvation, everything, everything. Especially then, Hell arms itself and puts into action all its forces to possess the soul that is going to pass into eternity, because it knows that only a little time remains before it is to be judged and that, if it does not succeed in ruining it, it will be saved forever. That is why the wicked spirit, accustomed to tempting it in life, is not content solely with tempting it at the hour of death, but even calls his companions to help him. They say that, at the moment of St. Andrew Avellino’s death, ten thousand devils gathered in his cell to tempt him.
But if, at that time, we have on our side the most powerful help of Mary, who will be able to overcome us? And, how will that gracious Mother deny us Her aid if we persevere in asking for it? She Herself revealed to St. Gertrude that She grants aid to Her devotees, at the point of death, for as many times as they have implored Her in life.
O, my friend! How fortunate you will be, if, at the critical moment of death, you find yourself bound by the chains of love to Our Lady of Perpetual Help. These are the chains of salvation and of eternal glory. No; that tender Mother does not know how to abandon Her true devotees at that supreme moment. She is the Mother of Perpetual Help; and just as She has helped them in the time of their exile, so also She exhibits Her sweetness at the hour of death and obtain for them a sweet and happy death.
And above all, showing Herself worthy of the beautiful name She bears, She sends the prince St. Michael with all the angels to the aids of Her faithful dying children, so they go then to defend them from the snares of the devils and receive the souls of all those who have continually commended themselves to Her.
She is not content with sending angels to the aid of Her devotees; She Herself will come in person to assist them in their last moments.
Since that great day when She had the good fortune and at the same time the sorrow of assisting Her son Jesus, Who is the first of the predestined, She obtained the grace of assisting all of them also at the terrible moment of death. That is why the Holy Church makes us pray for Her to help us especially in the hour of our death: “Pray for us, sinners, now and at the hour of our death.”
And this is found to be in conformity with what the Blessed Virgin said to St. Bridget, speaking of Her devotees: “Then, My daughter, as their Mistress and Mother, when they die, I will go out to meet them so they may have consolation and comfort.” The loving Queen then covers these souls with Her mantle and presents them to the judge, Her Son, and thus surely attains salvation for them.
Christian, although you may have been a sinner, you will not cease experiencing this consolation, provided that, from now on, you manage to live well and to serve this gracious and most amiable Lady. In your anguish and in the temptations with which the devil will assault you at death to make you despair, Our Mother of Perpetual Help will give you fortitude and will come Herself to defend you. And, with such a Mother and Protector, what will you you fear, O sinner?
Meditate and ask for what you wish to obtain from Our Lady of Perpetual Help.
AT THE END OF EACH PARAGRAPH SAY
Thou art Perpetual Help benign;
Come, therefore, I implore Thee:
Come hasten to assist me.
O Mother sweet and kind!
Hear, O Virgin pure,
Our fervent prayers of love
That fly to Thee above
On Thine exalted Throne.
Stained by guilt and sin
I bow my head and cry;
And at Thy feet I sigh
for clemency and love.
Free the careless soul
From it tepid ways,
And set the soul ablaze
with fervour in devotion
Wretched in this vale
Of pain and tribulation,
For heavenly consolation
I humbly beg of Thee.
If my virtue wanes
When tempests howl and roar,
My energies restore
Beloved Morning Star.
To Thy faithful child
And toward virtue guide
His weak unsteady step.
Free my fickle heart
from all its lassitude,
And grant it fortitude
To lead a sinless life.
In the final clash
With death in all its fright,
How great my soul’s delight
If then i can exclaim:
In purgatory’s fire,
Dear Mother, please be sweet;
Great Lady, I entreat,
Alleviate my pains.
Grant me, Mother dear,
As fond farewell to Thee,
To sing eternally
With love and praise to Thee:
Come hasten to assist me
O Mother sweet and kind!
O Mother of Perpetual Help! Pray for us now and at the hour of our death. Amen
Commend yourself three times a day to Our Lady of Perpetual Help to attain a happy death.
O Mother of Perpetual Help! What will become of me when I am at the point of delivering my soul to God? From now on, when I consider my sins, when I think of that terrible moment that must decide my salvation or my eternal perdition, I begin to tremble and become perplexed. O my Mother of Perpetual Help! Do not abandon me in that tremendous hour. What will become of me if Thou dost abandon me in that supreme moment! O, Holy Virgin, my Hope, come to my aid in the tremendous anguish in which I will then be held prisoner. fortify me when the devil wants to fling me into despair by the memory of the sins I have committed. Obtain for me the grace to invoke Thee then more often than ever, so that I may die uttering Thy most sweet name, together with that of Thy adorable Son, and that I may die loving God and loving Thee, to go afterwards to love Thee eternally in Paradise. Amen.
A woman from the pontifical States went one day to Rome to venerate the miraculous image of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. A priest, to whom she addressed herself, ask her what was the motive that had decided her to undertake such a long trip. She answered him: “My husband told me several times that in this church a very miraculous image of the Virgin, called Our Lady of Perpetual Help, was venerated. He often commended himself to Her and received many graces through her intercession. A little while ago he died. When he approached death, he said to me that he saw Our lady at his bedside. He received such consolation from this apparition that he seemed not to feel the pains of death, and he died so gently and piously that I have no doubt about his salvation; and my greatest happiness would be to die as he did.”
May the virgin of Perpetual Help be loved, praised, invoked and eternally blessed! May she be my hope, my love, my Mother, My refuge and my life. Amen.