The Sacred Wounds of Christ
St. Bernard of Clairvaux
Doctor of the Church
Although this excerpt from St. Bernard's homilies on the Song of Songs (Sermo 61, 3-5: Opera omnia, 2, 150-1) appears in the Roman Catholic office of readings for Wednesday in the 3rd week of ordinary time, it is very fitting to be used in Lent and especially during Holy Week as we meditate on the Passion of the Lord Jesus Christ. St. Bernard, perhaps the greatest preacher of the middle ages, delivered this sermon around the year 1130 AD.
Where can the weak find a place of firm security and peace, except in the wounds of the Savior? Indeed, the more secure is my place there the more he can do to help me. The world rages, the flesh is heavy, and the devil lays his snares, but I do not fall, for my feet are planted on firm rock. I may have sinned gravely. My conscience would be distressed, but it would not be in turmoil, for I would recall the wounds of the the Lord: He was wounded for our iniquities. What sin is there so deadly that it cannot be pardoned by the death of Christ? And so if I bear in mind this strong, effective remedy, I can never again be terrified by the malignancy of sin.
Surely the man who said: My sin is too great to merit pardon, was wrong. He was speaking as though he were not a member of Christ and had no share in his merits, so that he could claim them as his own, as a member of the body can claim what belongs to the head. As for me, what can I appropriate that I lack from the heart of the Lord who abounds in mercy? They pierced his hands and feet and opened his side with a spear. Through the openings of these wounds I may drink honey from the rock and oil from the hardest stone: that is, I may taste and see that the Lord is sweet.
He was thinking thoughts of peace, and I did not know it, for who knows the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor? But the piercing nail has become a key to unlock the door, that I may see the good will of the Lord. And what can I see as I look through the hole? Both the nail and the wound cry out that God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself. The sword pierced his soul and came close to his heart, so that he might be able to feel compassion for me in my weaknesses.
Through these sacred wounds we can see the secret of his heart, the great mystery of love, the sincerity of his mercy with which he visited us from on high. Where have your love, your mercy, your compassion shone out more luminously that in your wounds, sweet, gentle Lord of mercy? More mercy than this no one has than that he lay down his life for those who are doomed to death.
My merit comes from his mercy; for I do not lack merit so long as he does not lack pity. And if the Lord's mercies are many, then I am rich in merits. For even if I am aware of many sins, what does it matter? Where sin abounded grace has overflowed. And if the Lord's mercies are from all ages for ever, I too will sing of the mercies of the Lord for ever. Will I not sing of my own righteousness? No, Lord, I shall be mindful only of your justice. Yet that too is my own; for God has made you my righteousness.
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I Believe - The Heart of Catholic Faith
First given as a Lenten retreat, this is an awesome 4 session program to revitalize your faith and prepare you for the joy of Easter. Great for individuals or families or small groups. The workbook is a treasure of discussion questions, devotions and spiritual exercises that can serve as an easy-to-follow roadmap through the Lent or Holy Week that will break you out of stale patterns and enrich both your prayer and your understanding of the central truths of the Catholic faith, empowering you to share that faith with others.
A Guide to the Passion:
100 Questions about The Passion of the Christ, by Marcellino D'Ambrosio et al., not only helps you understand Mel Gibson's The Passion of Christ better, but gives you an effective, inexpensive way to share the Good News about God's love.
The Seven Deadly Sins -
There are books written about them and movies made about them, but what are they?
From about the fifth century, Christian spiritual writers identified seven patterns of sin that, if not broken, would lead to spiritual death. In this fascinating series by Dr. Marcellino D'Ambrosio, we learn the destructive, addictive dynamics of these seven vices and how they infiltrate, and ultimately take over people's lives. Most importantly, we find out how to get free of the chains forged by these sins and the necessary qualities to cultivate to make us immune to them in the future.
Listen as Dr. Marcellino D'Ambrosio explains The Seven Deadly Sins in this dynamic 3 CD set
The Meaning of the Passion
During Holy week, as we ponder the Passion of the Christ we can view Mel Gibson's movie and the events it depicts, we can't help but ask why it had to happen this way? Why did Jesus have to pass through such horrible torture to redeem us? Could not forgiveness and salvation have been obtained in some other way? Why does the Devil figure so prominently in the movie? And why does Mary play such an important role? This talk, a perfect complement to the film and The Guide to the Passion, will help you get the most out of the movie and the most out of Holy Week. 45 minutes, followed by questions and answers.
Retail - $9.00