ST GERTRUDE

In My Hour of Need

casey-horner-343980-unsplash.jpg

Guardian Angel Prayer
by St. Gertrude the Great

O most holy angel of God, appointed by God to be my guardian, I give you thanks for all the benefits which you have ever bestowed on me in body and in soul. I praise and glorify you that you condescended to assist me with such patient fidelity, and to defend me against all the assaults of my enemies. Blessed be the hour in which you were assigned me for my guardian, my defender and my patron. In acknowledgement and return for all your loving ministries to me, I offer you the infinitely precious and noble heart of Jesus, and firmly purpose to obey you henceforward, and most faithfully to serve my God. 

          For some months now, I have been saying 2 daily morning prayers. One from St Gertrude’s Guardian Angel prayer,

I offer you the infinitely precious and noble heart of Jesus.

and the other, a surrender and reparation prayer,

Heart of Jesus,

Victim of charity

make me a living sacrifice,

holy and pleasing unto Thee.

My whole day, its joys and twists, I try to offer up to God for a specific need or I leave it to Him to use my day’s worth where it is needed.

          There was an event that I had to attend today and from more than 2 weeks back I had been agonizing over it. Even when I was not actively thinking about it, it was always at the back of my mind, like a stench from a secret rot. I certainly prayed a lot, asking God to help tell me what to do – but I prayed to escape the event – and aligned God along that very line too. I hatched any number of escape plans too.

          Except that none of them felt like it was – it.

          Yesterday, I sagged and gave up to His Will. Finally conceding defeat, I sourly offered up the coming difficulty as reparation. No saintly, joyful suffering for me. I dragged myself to the day.

          The hours of the day fell among gentle plains and soft winds. I had expected only needles and knives, everything that suffering is to me, whatever its form. But it was as if someone had gently come to glide me past hurdles and traps. Even the unpleasant ridges seemed to have had their edges worn down.

          I was much relieved.

          It was hours later, after cold silver rains had drenched the seeking earth that my heart was led back to the Guardian Angel prayer lines,

…you condescended to assist me with such patient fidelity, and to defend me against all the assaults of my enemies.

          I understood then why the day I had dreaded for so long had seemed swathed in softness and gentleness. I saw why bridges had formed over breaches, why briars and brambles had been cleared from the path.

          Someone had laboured for me. My angel had come in my hour of need.

 

 

 

Lent 15 ~ Noble Heart of Jesus

Schiffer-SACREDHEART

I offer you the infinitely precious and noble Heart of Jesus.   ~   Guardian Angel Prayer, by St. Gertrude

 

          Since I read St. Gertrude’s Guardian Angel Prayer, I have become more conscious of my unseen companion. I went into the challenging hours of yesterday willing myself not to lose peace over discomforts, delays and sandpaper-moments. In every door I passed through,  my heart sought that golden presence.

          Granted, I didn’t always choose the way of Light in the hundred moments  embroidered into the busy day. But with each stumble, I righted myself and started anew, my spirit always in alertness for that fragrant peace that could still storms.

          It was in the part and weave of the hours that I began to see a word come before me over and over ~

Noble Heart of Jesus

          When my work day had ended, I found some quiet minutes to seek St. Gertrude’s prayer once more. There I found the birthplace of the day’s echoes,

In acknowledgment and return for all your loving ministries to me,

I offer you the infinitely precious and noble Heart of Jesus

          My Angel was asking an offering of me. I did not refuse.

          Every time my heart saw the Angel, I whispered, I offer you the noble Heart of Jesus.

Lent 14 ~ Angel’s Light

tumblr_nveya7rwIi1ted1sho1_1280-880x586

Blessed be the hour in which you were assigned me for my Guardian, my defender and my patron.   ~   from The Guardian Angel Prayer, by St. Gertrude

          I think my Angel of Peace has come. Since the events of yesterday, despite the crags and ruts the day held, no trouble ripples have touched my heart today. I went about my day in quiet and in unruffled peace. I believe that for every path that opened up before me in each task and decision of the day, the angel gently lit up the one that lay in the will of God.

          In uncharacteristic obedience, my spirit acquiesced each time.

          Because today, given my foot injury, I was not able to heat up the floors rushing from one task to another. I was forced to slow down, to walk with careful, measured steps. At this slow, labored pace, I had time to think and to sift through responses. I didn’t plunge headlong into tasks. When the photocopier got overheated, I didn’t rush to another bullet on my to-do list while it cooled down; I sat down and stared out at the distant hills wearing their trees like jewels.

          Despite the disruptions and machine breakdowns and the ungainly hobbling, everything that needed to be done got done and got done in peace. 

          Because I left myself and held Another’s hand. Because today I followed the Angel’s Light.

 

 

Lent 13 ~ Blessed Be The Hours

sad-boy-wallpapers

          This morning, during quiet minutes, I suddenly thought of The Angel of Peace. A seer has often mentioned that The Angel of Peace will come soon. I wondered who might that be. If it were any of the archangels – Michael, Gabriel or Raphael – I wonder why his name has never been pronounced.

          I know the dangers of attaching too much credence or belief to a visionary or seer. I remind myself of the dangers, because these are indeed dangerous times of confusion. I do not want to go the way of many who waited for the proclaimed time, but the wait was in vain.

          Yet, the words, Angel of Peace slipped in when much of the world was still asleep today, and it lay quietly on my heart. Along with it came unbidden a memory, worn soft with age, tears and old love. A memory of an angel~love that never had need of words when I needed comforting. Tender softness against my heart when I was tossed about by some wild wind of ache and tears, a softness that alone had the power to ease any storm.

          This love gave me a peace each time it came. A peace that was soft, gentle yet strong. It has now been very long since I’ve felt this peace. The old days have not returned yet.

          My thoughts returned to the Angel of Peace. Who are you? I asked. And then I went to my day, the hours soon became lost in whorls of busyness.

          I returned home as a golden orange flush gently swelled the warm evening skies. I should have been out, in the fading lisp of the aging day, quietening my heart as the day bade farewell. But too tired and in some pain from a foot injury, I stayed in and stole glances at the soft beckoning of the tangerine sunset.

          There was something in the eyes of the sky. An odd quietness, deep and alert, in the distant western abode where the sun goes to die each day. It was as if something or someone was waiting for me. But the demands of family and home shifted impatiently beside me and I could not go to the bidding of the waiting skies.

          When I didn’t go to meet that strange, secret quietness, it came towards me. I suddenly remembered that as I had awakened late that day, I hadn’t had the time to go to my daily readings and then to my prayer nook for my day’s prayer. So, I hastened to the Bible. And from there to my prayer nook.

          One saint I’ve never gone to before was waiting for me and she held out something to me now. St. Gertrude had misted by pretty often of late, and while I had never reached for her hand, today, she had a prayer  for me.

GUARDIAN ANGEL PRAYER

by St. Gertrude

O most holy Angel of God,

appointed by God to be my Guardian,

I give you thanks for all the benefits

which you have ever bestowed on me in body and soul.

I praise and glorify you that you condescended

to assist me with such patient fidelity,

and to defend me against all the assaults of my enemy.

Blessed be the hour

in which you were assigned me for my Guardian,

my defender and my patron.

In acknowledgment and return for all your loving ministries to me,

I offer you the infinitely precious and noble Heart of Jesus,

and firmly purpose to obey you henceforward,

and most faithfully to serve my God.                                      Amen.

 

         It could have come on any day, but this prayer came today when my thoughts were on The Angel of Peace. A tough day awaits me but I seem to be held safe in an invisible embrace of peace and stillness. Unhurried, I recall once more the angel~peace of old, still and quiet. I think of those have been granted the grace of seeing their guardian angels and I think about how their lives must have changed since then.

          Because no one is ever the same once they have seen those who share our lives, yet are not of this world.

          Blessed be those hours of grace when we saw.

          And knew.

         And loved.