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A Litany For Our Times

Saint Lawrence of Brindisi

 

 

Saint Lawrence was born in Brindisi in 1559.  God was doubtless chuckling when at the baptismal font he was given the name Julius Caesar by his parents. In 1575 he joined the Capuchins.  Due to his sharp mind and wonderful memory he excelled in his philosophical studies.  It was said of him that he knew  not only all the languages of Europe but most of those of the Near East.  He could quote from the entire Bible purely by memory.  He became a celebrated preacher, noted for making converts of non-Christians and the most obdurate of sinners.  He opened houses of his Order in France and Germany.  In 1602 he was made Vicar General of the Capuchins.  Made chaplain of the Imperial armies in 1601, in the attacks on Albe-Royal in Hungary where 18,000 Christians confronted 80,000 Turks, he placed himself ever in the forefront of the army in the midst of the fighting, armed only with a crucifix:  “Forward!” he cried, showing them the crucifix, “Victory is ours.” The army and its general ascribed the victory to God and to Father Lawrence.  Sent to evangelize Germany he converted many Protestants with his great learning, kindliness and the miracles that ever attended him throughout his life.  He was beatified in 1783, coincidentally the year of victory for the Americans in their Revolution.  In 1959 Pope John proclaimed him the thirtieth Doctor of the Church.

 

Here is a litany for Saint Lawrence written in 1919.  It speaks strongly to our time.

 

Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us! Lord, have mercy on us! Christ hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.

God the Father of heaven, Have mercy on us! God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us! God the Holy Ghost, Have mercy on us! Holy Trinity, one God, Have mercy on us!

Holy Mary, Pray for us. Holy Mother of God, Pray for us. Holy Virgins of virgins, Pray for us. Saint Lawrence of Brindisi, Pray for us. Faithful son of holy Father Francis, Pray for us. Teacher of humility, Pray for us. Mirror of purity, Pray for us. Champion of monastic poverty, Pray for us. Model of absolute obedience, Pray for us. Victim of unbloody martyrdom, Pray for us. Marvel of fortitude, Pray for us. Paragon of temperance, Pray for us. Master of self-denial, Pray for us. Model of patience, Pray for us. Despiser of the world, Pray for us. Ardent devotee of the host Holy Sacrament, Pray for us. Love-glowing angel at the Altar, Pray for us. Silent adorer of the hidden Saviour, Pray for us. Holy Priest, Pray for us. Childlike client of Our Lady, Pray for us. Temple of virtues, Pray for us. Stalwart defense against all temptations, Pray for us. Golden vessel of heavenly comfort, Pray for us. Celestial messenger, Pray for us. Zealous preacher of the truth, Pray for us. Scourge of heresy, Pray for us. Tireless worker for the salvation of souls, Pray for us. Zealot for conversion of the Jews, Pray for us. Warrior for the Faith, Pray for us. Prudent counselor, Pray for us. Consolation of princes, Pray for us. Joy of kings, Pray for us. Rescuer of many lands and kingdoms, Pray for us. Father of the poor and suffering, Pray for us. Great wonder worker, Pray for us. Servant of God, worthy of all honor, Pray for us. Ornament of the Seraphic Order, Pray for us. Blessed Father, raised to a throne of glory, Pray for us. That we may make thy treasure of poverty our own, Pray for us. That we may persevere in holy obedience to the commandments of God and Holy Church, Pray for us. That, rich in poverty, adorned with chastity, and in holy obedience we may die and enjoy eternal bliss, Pray for us. Wonder worker and holy Father, Lawrence, Pray for us.

Christ Jesus, Who didst choose Thy servant Lawrence for the Apostolic life, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Who didst adorn Thy priest Lawrence with seraphic love toward Thee and Thy Virgin Mother, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Who didst liberally endow Saint Lawrence with the gift of tears, with the gift of tongues, with ecstasies, with fortitude and wisdom, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Who didst give Thy priest Lawrence the grace of wonderful recollection and devotion during the celebration of Mass, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Who didst enrich Thy servant Lawrence with the pearl of most high poverty, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Who didst honor Thy servant Lawrence with the precious adornment of angelic chastity, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Who didst make Thy servant Lawrence mighty in word and work, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Who didst distinguish Thy servant Lawrence through numerous cures and miracles, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Who didst glorify Thy servant Lawrence by giving him the palm of victory over the enemies of Holy Church, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Who didst ordain Thy servant Lawrence to be an angel of peace to all Christendom, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Christ Jesus, Son of God, Graciously hear us, O Lord.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world: Spare us, O Lord! Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world: Graciously hear us, O Lord! Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world: Have mercy on us, O Lord!

Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us. Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us. Lord, have mercy on us.

V. Pray for us, O Saint Lawrence: R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray. O God, Who didst grant to Thy Confessor, Lawrence, the spirit of counsel and fortitude that he might accomplish most arduous tasks for Thy Name and the good of souls: grant us that in the same spirit we may know our obligations, and through his intercession fulfill them. Through Christ Our Lord. R. Amen.

 

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Donald R. McClarey

Cradle Catholic. Active in the pro-life movement since 1973. Father of three and happily married for 35 years. Small town lawyer and amateur historian. Former president of the board of directors of the local crisis pregnancy center for a decade.

3 Comments

  1. What a Saint!

    I appreciate the artist rendition of battle and our fearless Father with crucifix in hand restoring courage in the hearts of men. All the while the hand to hand combat ensues. “Victory is Ours!”
    Amen!

    The litany is beautiful. “Silent adorer of the hidden Savior.” 🙂 Thanks.

    Your son has a tremendous namesake.

  2. This litany is great in its petitions for now during Lent with thought about Saint Lawrence, his inspiration. It must have been with a kind of joy that you posted this, having remembered Larry’s last Ash Wednesday yesterday. What the company of Heaven can be for him!
    .
    ‘That we may persevere in holy obedience to the commandments of God and Holy Church, Pray for us.’
    .
    Need to get a printer soon.

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