Your duty is to sanctify yourself. Yes, even you. Who thinks that this task is only for priests and religious? To everyone, without exception, our Lord said: Be ye perfect, as my heavenly Father is perfect. St. Josemaria

Monday, September 8, 2008

Our Lady of Chairty...

Today, September 8th is the Feast day of Our Lady of Charity...patroness of Cuba.. Below is some history on our Lady of Charity and prayer to Our Lady of Charity. I ask you that you will say a prayer for Cuba, who is in great need of prayers so that one day that beautiful country will be what God calls it to be... a beloved place for His Beloved... Our Lady!

A statue of Our Lady with a miraculous origin. It stands about 16 inches high. The head is made of baked clay covered with a polished coat of fine white powder, possibly rice paste, and until recently was covered with several layers of paint. She stands on a moon that has silver clouds at either end and three golden-winged cherubs beneath it. She cradles the Christ Child in her left arm, and holds a gold crucifix in her right. The Child raises one hand in blessing, and in the other hand he holds a golden globe. The image's original robes were white, but as usual, the figure is covered by a heavy ornate cloak with gold and silver embroidery, including the Cuban national shield. It hides the body and gives the statue a triangular shape.

Around 1608 two brothers, Rodrigo and Juan de Hoyos, and a ten-year-old slave boy named Juan Moreno, left Santiago del Prado (modern El Cobre, named after the copper mines), Cuba in search of salt to preserve meat for the copper miners. Halfway across the Bay of Nipe they put in for the night to wait out a strong storm. The next morning a small white bundle floated across the water toward them. It turned out to be the statue of Our Lady. It was attached to a board, was completely dry, and bore the inscription I am the Virgin of Charity. A shrine was built immediately, and instantly became a pilgrimage destination.

A shrine was erected in her honor and devotion to Our Lady of Charity spread throughout Cuba.

Our Lady of Charity also had a special place in the ministry of
Pope Benedict’s predecessor, Pope John Paul II of happy
memory, who preached the Gospel with courage during his
historic pastoral trip to Cuba in January 1998. In a solemn
ceremony attended by thousands of Cuban Catholics, he
crowned the statue of Our Lady of Charity, which was carried in
procession through the streets.

From our Great John Paul :

"During this celebration we will crown the image of Our Lady of Charity of El Cobre. From her shrine, not far from here, the Queen and Mother of all Cubans — regardless of race, political allegiance or ideology — guides and sustains, as in times past, the steps of her sons and daughters towards our heavenly homeland, and she encourages them to live in such a way that in society those authentic moral values may reign which constitute the rich spiritual heritage received from your forebears. With gratitude, we turn to her, as did her cousin Elizabeth, and say: "Blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfilment of what was spoken to her by the Lord" (Lk 1:45). In these words lies the secret of the true happiness of individuals and peoples: to believe and proclaim that the Lord has done marvellous things for us and that his mercy is from generation to generation on those who are faithful to him. This conviction is the force which inspires men and women to commit themselves selflessly, even at the cost of sacrifice, to the service of others. Mary's example of readiness to serve shows us the path to take. With her, the Church fulfils her own vocation and mission, proclaiming Jesus Christ and exhorting us to do what he says, building a universal brotherhood in which every person can call God "Father". "

Most Holy Mother of Charity who came to us as a messenger of peace across the sea. You are the Mother of all Cubans To you we come, Most Holy Mother of God to honor you with love as your children.
To your motherly heart we entrust our desires and hopes our work and our prayers.
We pray for our torn country that we may be able to build a nation based on peace and unity. We pray for our families that they may live in fidelity and love.
We pray for our children that they may grow strong in spirit and in body.
We pray for our young people that their faith may increase, as well as their attachment to the truth.
We pray for the sick, the homeless, the lonely, the exiled, and for all suffering souls. We pray for the Catholic Church in Cuba, for its mission, for its priests, deacons, religious and laity.
We pray for the victory of justice and love in our country.
Mother of Charity! We place ourselves under your mantle of protection! Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus! And to Him be the glory and the power now and forever. Amen.
(Add one Our Father, three Hail Marys, and one Gloria

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