Day Four of the Novena to Saints Louis and Zelie Martin

prepared for Sainte-Therese Parish in Metz, France.  Used with the permission of Fr. Jean-Claude Lange and translated by Mary Davidson for "Saint Therese of Lisieux: A Gateway."  Please pray in thanksgiving for them.

Icon by Paul Orlando for the Parish of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel in Trieste, Italy. Displayed on "Blessed Louis and Zelie Martin" with permission of Fr. Antonio Sangalli, O.C.D.

Fourth Day of the Novena to Saints Louis and Zelie Martin

Theme:  "Breakup of the family"

"Let there be among you abundant generosity and tenderness, forgiving one another as God has forgiven you in Christ. Yes, try to imitate God because you are his beloved children.” (Ephesians 4:32)

Prayer to the Holy Spirit:

"O fire of the Spirit, the Paraclete, giving life to every creature,  you are holy, and your life takes many forms. You are holy, you who cover the most painful fractures with balm; you are holy, you who heal the most fetid wounds. O breath of holiness, O fire of love, O sweetness in the hearts and souls, raining down fragrant virtues. O purest fountain where we see God together and seek the lost. O breastplate of life, hope of the union of all men, beautiful respite, savior of souls. Free those who are imprisoned and deliver those who are bound; save them with divine power." (St. Hildegard)

Psalm 133

 Of David

1 How good and pleasant it is

when God’s people live together in unity!

2 It is like precious oil poured on the head,

running down on the beard,

running down on Aaron’s beard,

down on the collar of his robe.

3 It is as if the dew of Hermon

were falling on Mount Zion.

For there the Lord bestows God's blessing,

even life forevermore.

Psalm 134

A song of ascents.

1 Praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord

who minister by night in the house of the Lord.

2 Lift up your hands in the sanctuary

and praise the Lord.

3 May the Lord bless you from Zion,

who is the Maker of heaven and earth.

Reflection:

Any event in life can serve as a foundation for establishing a family in heaven. For example, those who go before us,  our dead, can prepare a way for us. Never forget the beautiful prayer for the souls of our dead, who need our prayers. We also pray for our divorced families, the ones whose marriages have ended. Remember what the Gospel tells us: "It is by your wounds, Jesus, that we are healed."  Think positively about all the wounds to love, with an attitude of welcome, not rejection. It may be that we are led to live in separation for a more rewarding life for ourselves and also for our other relationships. Were not the little sisters and brothers of Therese angels in heaven for their family here on earth? Therese herself tells us in Poem 16.5: "Lift up your eyes toward Heaven, and you will see on thrones of honor a beloved father, a beloved mother to whom you owe your great happiness.” So we can establish links between this world and Heaven. “Listen to my voice. I give thee counsel, and God be with you.  You will discern and your load will be lightened. Others will share it with you…Moses listened to the voice of his father, and he did as he had suggested.” Exodus 18: 13-27.

If we are divorced, we can, for example, remain faithful to a particular sacrament, an absent husband or wife, preserving, in the hope of mercy, a dialogue of love with our Father in Heaven. Whatever our state of separation and waiting to be restored to our union with the Father, learn to bless because we are called to bless. Let us give and receive forgiveness. Louis and Zelie Martin, in fidelity to their covenant, always received the blessing of the Father to keep the family in peace, and their children around them. Yes, cement the union with God because our identity is in our Father. "Fear not, for I have redeemed you. I have called you by name; you are mine."(Isaiah 43: 1-5) With John,  remember the words of our Lord: “Do not murmur among yourselves.” Sing the Psalm: "Behold it is good, it is sweet, to live together in unity."

For Meditation:

Louis and Zelie Martin, teach us to make paths of healing in our broken families.

Louis and Zelie Martin, teach us to say our"yes" or "no."

May we see the events of our lives in the light of truth and charity.

Daily Prayer: Our Father; Hail Mary; Our Father

"Prayer to Saints Louis and Zelie Martin

Saints Louis and Zélie Martin,
after having had the desire for religious life,
you heard the Lord's call to the vocation of marriage. 

You are the "parents without equal"
of whom your daughter Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus speaks;
the fortunate parents of Léonie,
the Servant of God, Sister Françoise-Thérèse;
of Marie, Pauline, and Céline,
transplanted to Mount Carmel;
and of the four children
taken from your affection in their youth:
Hélène, Joseph, Jean-Baptiste, and Mélanie-Thérèse.

 You gave all glory to God
through your humble and patient work,
your commitment to the poor,
and your family life,
where reigned the happiness
of loving
and being loved.

 You lived your daily life concretely
through the joys and sorrows of your existence.

 You love us as your own children,
with the heart of a father and the heart of a mother,
because you are the friends of God. 

Listen to our prayer and our request
(state the request . . . )
and intercede for us with God the Father,
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
in the grace of the Holy Spirit.

Amen.

This prayer is courtesy of the Shrine of Sts. Louis and Zelie Martin in Alencon.
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Prayer that was recited before the canonization:

God Our Father,

I thank you for Louis and Zelie Martin,

a couple united in faith, giving the witness of an exemplary Christian life

through the exercise of the duty of their state in life

and the practice of the evangelical virtues.

In the education of a large family,

through trials, mourning, and suffering,

they generously expressed their trust in You

and their submission to Your will.

Deign to grant, O Lord, the graces that I seek,

in the hope that the father and mother of St. Therese of the Child Jesus

will one day be proposed as models for today's families for the entire Church. Amen.

For tomorrow:

 

The translation of this novena is copyright Maureen O'Riordan 2013-2017.  Please do not reproduce or republish the text elsewhere.  You are most welcome to pray it from this Web site, to link to the Web site, and to share the link to this Web site.