Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Feast of the Holy Face

Jesus, Your ineffable image
Is the star which guides my steps.
Ah, You know, Your sweet Face
Is for me Heaven on earth.
My love discovers the charms
Of Your Face adorned with tears.
I smile through my own tears
When I contemplate Your sorrows.

Oh! To console You I want
To live unknown on earth!
Your beauty, which You know how to veil,
Discloses for me all its mystery.
I would like to fly away to You!

Your Face is my only homeland.
It's my Kingdom of love.
It's my cheerful meadow.
Each day, my sweet sun.
It's the Lily of the Valley
Whose mysterious perfume
Consoles my exiled soul,
Making it taste the peace of Heaven.

It's my Rest, my Sweetness
And my melodious Lyre
Your Face, O my Sweet Savior,
Is the Divine Bouquet of Myrrh
I want to keep on my heart!

Your Face is my only wealth.
I ask for nothing more.
Hiding myself in it unceasingly,
I will resemble You, Jesus
Leave in me, the Divine Impress
Of Your features filled with sweetness,
And soon I'll become holy.
I shall draw hearts to You.

So that I may gather
A beautiful golden harvest,
Deign to set me aflame with Your Fire.
With Your adorned mouth,
Give me soon the Eternal Kiss!

-- Canticle to the Holy Face by Thérèse of Lisieux

** On 17 April, 1958, His Holiness Pope Pius XII confirmed the Feast of the Holy Face on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday (also known as Shrove Tuesday and Mardi Gras). Sr Maria Pierina de Micheli (1900-1945) reported that Jesus appeared to her and asked her that a feast be established on this day in honor of his Holy Face.

In traditional Carmels, today is a day of penance and a holy hour, in addition to the two daily hours of mental prayer, is prayed in reparation for the offences committed on this day (the New Orleans carnival comes to mind) and in preparation for the penitential season of Lent.

1 comment:

Mark said...

Thanks for a lovely post. I really do appreciate the fact that your blog follows the traditional calendar as well as the modern calendar.