Psalm 13

1. The Agony in the Garden
My God, I trusted in your kindness. Let my heart rejoice in your salvation; let me sing of the Lord, “He has been good to me.” (Ps 13:6)
Jesus, having trusted his Father, turned to Him in his anguish, asking to take the cup of suffering away from Him. He relied on Father’s kindness and He was not disappointed. Father sent an angel who consoled Jesus. In your trial and hardship, God will not leave you alone. In His kindness, He will send you an angel to console you. Just open your eyes and your ears. Listen to the word of consolation and see the angel in your fellow sister, neighbor, or a person who stops by you.
Blessed Alphonse Marie teaches us, “We never struggle alone. Jesus helps us. If we love Him, all sufferings become pleasant and bearable for us.”

2. The Scourging at the Pillar
How long, O Lord? Will you utterly forget me? How long will you hide your face from me? (Ps 13:2)
It seems that God the Father forgot His Son, Jesus, hid His face from Him, and left Him to expose to cruel flogging. Every wrong, which a person must bear, even only for a short time, is excruciating. Yet, Jesus bore the flogging silently to the end. “How long?” is a frequent question. Yet, the answer is not certain. So, look at Jesus and ask Him to help you to bear your difficulties of life silently and patiently.
Blessed Alphonse Marie teaches us, “Remain tranquil and patient, and accept everything with submission.”

3. The Crowning with Thorns
How long shall I harbor sorrow in my soul, grief in my heart day after day? How long will my enemy triumph over me? (Ps 13:3)
Jesus was mocked bitterly by the soldiers. They waved a crown made of thorns and placed it on Jesus’ head. What sorrow it brought into His soul! What grief into His heart! His enemy triumphed over Him. Yes, in the eyes of the world it seems that Jesus lost. Disgraced and humiliated, Jesus bore the mockery for the salvation of the world. We also experience sorrow, grief, and bitter mockery. Bring them to Jesus, who will change them into great joy for your salvation and the salvation of others.
Blessed Alphonse Marie teaches us, “You will not be able to make progress in the interior life until the spirit has finally triumphed over the flesh.”

4. The Carrying of the Cross
Look, answer me, O Lord, my God! Give light to my eyes that I may not sleep in death. (Ps 13:4)
Jesus, weakened by inhuman treatment, fell many times on the way to Calvary under the heavy cross. His executors were afraid that He might sleep in death on the way. Yet, God wanted Jesus to finish His mission dying on the cross. So He strengthened Jesus, who was able to bring the heavy cross on Calvary. God answers to those who call to Him. He gives light to them to see the way to go further.
Blessed Alphonse Marie teaches us, “Everything is now difficult in the service of God. The battles are constant; in fact, at times violent. But take courage and think often on the hour of your death; how you will then wish to have endured everything for the love of God.”

5. The Crucifixion and Death of Jesus
Lest my enemy say, “I have overcome him”; Lest my foes rejoice at my downfall. (Ps 13:5)
Jesus, hanging on the cross, was dying. His enemies reviled Him saying, ”…save yourself by coming down from the cross.” (Mk 15:30) His foes rejoiced and mocked Him saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. Let the Messiah, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross that we may see and believe.” (Mk 15:32) Jesus’ downfall brought salvation to the world. Accept your downfalls, your difficulties and hardships and offer them to Jesus, our Redeemer, that you may be saved.
Blessed Alphonse Marie teaches us, “When at last your love for Jesus is so great that you can suffer with Him, then you will really be able to rejoice with Him.”

Meditations on Psalms

Psalm 31

1. The Agony in the Garden
Once I said in my anguish, “I am cut off from your sight”. Yet you heard the sound of my pleading when I cried out to you. (Ps 31:23)
In his anguish, Jesus cried to his Father to take the cup of suffering away from Him. Yet, He also said that He accepts the will of his Father. And God the Father heard Jesus’ prayer, though not in the way Jesus asked Him. The Father sent the angel to strengthen Jesus. This is the example how to pray in our hardships. Don’t be afraid to cry before God. God won’t be deaf to your prayer if you pray fervently. He will send you help to overcome your hardships.
Blessed Alphonse Marie encourages us, “We never struggle alone. Jesus helps us. If we love Him, all sufferings become pleasant and bearable for us.”

2. The Scourging at the Pillar
You hide them in the shelter of your presence from the plotting of men; You screen them within your abode from the strife of tongues. (Ps 31:21)
Pilate, thinking that would satisfy the shouting crowds, has Jesus scourged. Jesus, standing at the pillar, is exposed to cruel flogging. He has nowhere to hide from those who beat him. And they do it with great zeal. But the crowds – the plotting men – seeing Jesus covered with blood, shouted even louder, asking for His death. Evil, iniquity, wrong – seems to be growing every day. People conspire one against the other. Do not let yourself be scourged with it. Rather, bring it to God in prayer. Our world needs more prayers than the shouting mouths.
Blessed Alphonse Marie encourages us, “O my Jesus, preserve me today from every sin.”

3. The Crowning with Thorns
For all my foes I am an object of reproach, a laughingstock to my neighbors, and a dread to my friends; they who see me abroad flee from me. (Ps 31:12)
Jesus, the supreme King of the universe, is standing among the soldiers who mock Him bitterly. Weaving a crown out of thorns they place it on Jesus’ head. And kneeling before Him, they mock Him. They even spit upon Him and keep striking Him on the head. It is painful to bear such a mockery. Yet, people are still humiliated by others consciously or unconsciously. Ask God for grace to bear humbly any kind of reproach.
Blessed Alphonse Marie encourages us, “Inasmuch as humiliation weakens pride, it strengthens our inclination to good and fills our soul with joy.”

4. The Carrying of the Cross
Have pity on me, O Lord, for I am in distress; with sorrow my eye is consumed; my soul also, and my body. For my life is spent with sighing; My strength has failed through affliction, and my bones are consumed. (Ps 31:10-11)
Jesus, carrying the cross, grows weaker and weaker. Restless night, loss of large amounts of blood, denied by his apostles, and all the physical and spiritual sufferings He bears, consumes Him so much that He falls on the ground. Yet, obedient to his Father’s will, He gets up and continues on the road to Calvary. Sickness, fatigue, misunderstanding, sorrow, etc. consume our strength and we no longer have the will to bear it. Yet, Jesus shows us the example to accept God’s will, who will strengthen us if we turn to Him.
Blessed Alphonse Marie encourages us, “I have passed through sufferings of every kind, and I can assure you, that a soul that has resolved to recognize suffering as her portion is happy, yes, is happy indeed.”

5. The Crucifixion and Death of Jesus
Into your hands I commend my spirit; you will redeem me, O Lord, O faithful God. (Ps 31:6)
Jesus, nailed on the cross, is dying. Abandoned by his Father, mocked by the chief priests, jeered by soldiers, and reviled by one of the criminals, He still shows his great love for us and the will to redeem us, saying, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.” Aware that He accomplished the mission entrusted Him by his Father, says, “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.” How blessed is the death for those who during their life often recommended their spirit to God, aware that God is their Redeemer. But how painful is dying for those who are not reconciled to God and to others! Pray often for them and recommend them to God.
Blessed Alphonse Marie encourages us, “It is written, that a person who contributes to the salvation of a soul is thereby assured the salvation of their own soul.”

Psalm 40

1. The Agony in the Garden
I have waited, waited for the Lord, AND HE STOOPED TOWARD ME AND HEARD MY CRY. He drew me out of the pit of destruction, out of the mud of the swamp. (Ps 40:2-3a)
At night before He died, Jesus cried to His Father in the Garden of Olive. Jesus’ disciples fall asleep. They did not see, nor did they understand Jesus’ anguish. They failed in prayer. Yet, the Father heard Jesus’ prayer and sent the angel to strengthen Him. Let us cry before God. Let us ask Him to end this pandemic, comfort the afflicted and their families, and strengthen those who take care for them. Our God is not deaf to a fervent prayer. In His mercy, He will draw us out of this disaster.
Blessed Alphonse Marie encourages us, “Turn to God, without the slightest distrust, on all occasions. Ask, and you will receive.”

2. The Scourging at the Pillar
Happy the man, WHO MAKES THE LORD HIS TRUST; WHO TURNS NOT TO IDOLATRY or to those who stray after falsehood. (Ps 40:5)
Jesus trusted in His Father, even when He endured the cruel scourging at the pillar. For our good, He didn’t turn away from the evil, which He had to bear. So let us put our trust in God, who allows us to suffer in this time. Yet, He will change our trial into the happiness. May the intercession of our Blessed Virgin strengthen our hope in God and protect us from going astray.
Blessed Alphonse Marie encourages us, “I have passed through sufferings of every kind, and I can assure you, that a soul that has resolved to recognize suffering as her portion is happy, yes, is happy indeed.”

3. The Crowning with Thorns
He put a new song into my mouth, a hymn to our God. MANY SHALL LOOK ON IN AWE AND TRUST IN THE LORD. (Ps 40:4)
After the scourging and the crowning Him with thorns, Jesus was brought to Pilate. He said about Jesus, “Behold, the man!” Pilate was pagan, yet he looked on Jesus with pity. But the crowd, stirred up by the chief priests, did not see in Jesus, the loving face of God, on which should be looked on in awe. Every sin destroys the image of God in us. Let us make reparation for our sins and ask God to restore His image in us. Trust in the Lord that through our penance and prayer, He will soon end this pandemic.
Jesus said to Blessed Alphonse Marie, “My daughter, always look to me, and abandon all things to me.”

4. The Carrying of the Cross
I announced your justice in the vast assembly; I did not restrain my lips, as you, O Lord, know. Your justice I kept not hid within my heart; YOUR FAITHFULNESS AND YOUR SALVATION I HAVE SPOKEN OF. I HAVE MADE NO SECRED OF YOUR KINDNESS AND YOUR TRUTH IN THE VAST ASSEMBLY.
On His way to Calvary, carrying the cross, Jesus met the women, who mourned and lamented Him. Jesus did not keep God’s justice within His heart, but He told them about God’s faithfulness and salvation. He announced them and the large crowd following Him on His cruciate way, God’s kindness and mercy, if they would repent. Let us ask God for His mercy and kindness through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin, who faithfully accompanied Jesus on His way to Calvary.
Blessed Alphonse Marie encourages us, “Meet all persons with love and kindness.”

5. The Crucifixion and Death of Jesus
Sacrifice or oblation you wish not, but ears open to obedience you gave me. Holocaust or sin-offerings you sought not; then I said, ”Behold I come; in the written scroll it is prescribed for me. TO DO YOUR WILL, O MY GOD, IS MY DELIGHT, AND YOUR LAW IS WITHIN MY HEART!“ (Ps 40:7-9)
The last of Jesus’ words, “It is finished,” express that Jesus was obedient to God’s will till His last breath. St. John points out that Jesus also kept God’s law, “Aware that everything was now finished, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled, Jesus said, ‘I thirst.’” Jesus did not come to abolish the law but to fulfill. According to Jesus’ example, the will of God should be my will and the law of God I should fulfill. Let us ask God, through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin, to see God’s will for our lives, especially in this time of disaster.
Blessed Alphonse Marie encourages us, “Holiness consists especially in the conformity of our will to the will of God.”
We Remember
Merciful Jesus, grant them eternal rest.
3Sister M. Agnes Szakal 1991
6Sister M. Ernestine Spisak 1985
7Sister M. Carmella Ducsay 2004
8Sister M. Frances Porob 1986
15Sister Lucille Toth 2022
20Sister M. Agilbertha Laszlo 1992
23Sister M. Bertha Decsi 1970
25Sister M. Cornelia Stropkey 2003
29Sister M. Rosanne Washy 2008
31Rev. Emil Egner, Chaplain 1959

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