FOURTH WEEK OF LENT

cropped-st-patrick1.jpgThis Week’s Message
The Lorica of Saint Patrick

A PRAYER OF PROTECTION DURING LENT

Saint Patrick lived during the second half of the fifth century. He was a missionary and a monk who later became first bishop and primate of Ireland. Saint Patrick is venerated in the Anglican Communion, the Eastern Orthodox Church, and the Roman Catholic Church as the founder of Christianity in Ireland and as patron of Ireland. He is also venerated as the patron of Puerto Rico, Spain, and the Archdioceses of Boston, Newark, and New York; and as a protector against both snakebites and sins. The Feast of Saint Patrick is celebrated on March 17th, which tradition holds is the day of his death.

The Lorica of Saint Patrick is a prayer of protection that is prayed as a safeguard against evil. The word “lorica” in Latin means armor or breastplate. In this context, the Lorica (or Breastplate) of Saint Patrick is a spiritual shield against darkness in the form of a prayer that reads like a poem or litany. Some scholars disagree about whether it was actually written by Saint Patrick, but it was discovered in 1903 as part of a collection of ancient hymns that includes an account of how the saint used the prayer as protection against adversaries who sought to prevent the conversion of the Irish people.

Over the years, the Lorica of Saint Patrick has been revised and shortened for popular usage. The longer and original version of the Lorica of Saint Patrick appears below; the shorter version is printed in this week’s newsletter. As the Feast of Saint Patrick approaches and as our Lenten journey continues, let us pray together for God’s guid- ance, God’s protection, and God’s strength. Let us pray together for the grace to keep our thoughts, words, and deeds focused on Christ. And let us pray for each other: that the Lord will unite all peoples in prayer, fellowship, and service; and help us to live the Gospel, share God’s love, and rebuild the Church.

I bind to myself today
the strong virtue of the invocation of the Trinity:
I believe in the Trinity, in the Unity,
the Creator of the Universe.
I bind to myself today
the virtue of the Incarnation of Christ with His Baptism,
the virtue of his crucifixion with his burial,
the virtue of his Resurrection with his Ascension,
the virtue of his coming on the Day of Judgment.
I bind to myself today
the virtue of the love of seraphim,
in the obedience of angels,
in the hope of resurrection unto reward,
in prayers of patriarchs,
in predictions of prophets,
in preaching of apostles,
in faith of confessors,
in purity of holy virgins,
in deeds of religious men.
I bind myself today
the power of heaven,
the light of the sun,
the brightness of the moon,
the splendor of fire,
the flashing of lighting,
the swiftness of wind,
the depth of sea,
the stability of earth,
the compactness of rocks.
I bind myself today
God’s power to guide me,
God’s might to uphold me,
God’s wisdom to teach me,
God’s eye to watch over me,
God’s ear to to hear me,
God’s word to give me speech,
God’s hand to to guide me,
God’s way to lie before me,
God’s shield to shelter me,
God’s host to secure me,
against the snares of demons,
against the seductions of vices,
against the lusts of nature,
against anyone who plots injury to me,
whether far or near,
whether few or many.
I invoke today all these virtues
against every hostile power,
which may assail my body and soul,
against incantations of false prophets,
against the black laws of heathens,
against the false laws of heresy,
against the deceits of idolatry,
against the spells of the wicked,
against everything that binds the soul of man.
Christ, protect me this day
against every poison, against burning,
against drowning, against deadly wounds,
so that I may receive your abundant reward.
Christ with me, Christ before me,
Christ behind me, Christ above me,
Christ at my right, Christ at my left,
Christ in the fort, Christ in the chariot,
Christ in the highest deck,
Christ in the heart of everyone who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in the eye that sees me,
Christ in the ear that hears me.
I bind myself today
the strong virtue of an invocation to the Trinity,
I believe in the Trinity, in the Unity,
the Creator of the Universe.

Learn More: Saint Patrick 
CCGR Weekly Newsletter (3-11-18)
Bringing Home the Word (3-11-18)

__________

The Light Is On For You!
Confessions & Eucharistic Adoration
Wednesday, March 14th

During the Holy Season of Lent, all Catholics are invited to experience Christ’s love and mercy through the Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation (Confession). On Wednesday, March 14th, all are invited to join us for “The Light Is On For You!” from 6:00pm until 8:00pm in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. This special evening of prayer will include Evening Prayer and Night Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours; Eucharistic Adoration and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament; and confessions for those who feel called to participate.

For some among us, this may be a time for confession and sacramental reconciliation. For some, it may be a time for silent prayer and reflection. And for some, it may be a time to begin or renew a life of faith. Our “Guide for Making a Good Confession” is available below and at the entrances of all of our churches. For more information, please contact Father Jim at frjim@ccgronline.com. Wherever you are on your faith journey, the light is on for you! Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!

Learn More: Guide for Making a Good Confession 

__________

Stations of the Cross
A Traditional Lenten Devotion
Friday, March 16th

The Stations of the Cross are one of the most enduring and moving devotions of the Roman Catholic Church. By uniting our prayers with those of the suffering Christ through both word and imagery, we make a spiritual pilgrimage with our Lord as he experiences the Passion of the Cross. On Friday, March 16th, all are invited to join the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport in praying the Stations of the Cross at 7:00pm in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. For more information about Lent in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, please contact Father Jim at frjim@ccgronline.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!

Learn More: A Franciscan Stations of the Cross

__________

Lent Mission & Retreat
Called to Fullness of Life
Begins March 21st

All are invited to join us for the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport’s Lent Mission & Retreat: “Called to Fullness of Life” from Wednesday, March 21st through Friday, March 23rd in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. Each evening will begin with Mass at 7:00pm. We will be blessed to welcome back Sister Elizabeth Wagner as our special guest and spiritual director, who will lead us in prayer and reflection each evening after Mass.

As part of our “Year for Vocations,” Sister Elizabeth will talk with us about finding meaning in daily life through God’s abiding presence; discovering our true selves through God’s grace; and growing into wholeness and purity of heart through God’s love. In this way, our Lent Mission & Retreat is based on the promise that God calls each of us (heart, body, and soul) to live the Christian life. But because of our fallen natures, we spend our lives working our way back to God through an often painful process of discipleship and reintegration. According to Sister Elizabeth, the ancient monastics would counsel us that our ultimate goal is purity of heart or what we might call wholeness or the true self. Ultimately, our Lent Mission & Retreat is about our individual faith journey and the “great walk back” from unlikeness to the fullness of life with God.

Sister Elizabeth Wagner lives a contemplative life at Transfiguration Hermitage in Windsor, Maine, which she founded as a semi-eremitical community devoted to prayer and solitude according to the Rule of Saint Benedict. She is a hermit, award-winning writer, spiritual director, and retreat leader. Sister Elizabeth is also formation director, gardener, and groundskeeper of the hermitage. Our Lent Mission & Retreat is free but donations will be gratefully accepted during Mass to support our adult faith formation program. For more information, please contact Cliff Garvey at cgarvey@ccgronline.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!

Learn More: Transfiguration Hermitage

__________

About Us

Established in 2014, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport is a collaborative of two historic parishes: Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. Working together as a Roman Catholic community united in prayer, fellowship, and service, we are committed to living the Gospel of Christ, sharing God’s love and mercy with all people, and rebuilding the Church in Gloucester & Rockport. All are invited! All are welcome! Always!

Follow us on Twitter: @CCGRonline