Prayers and Hymns of St. Bernard

Most Holy Name of Jesus
O Sacred Head
Marian Prayers

Prayer to the Most Holy Name of Jesus

Jesus, the very thought of Thee
With sweetness fills the breast!
Yet sweeter far Thy face to see
And in Thy presence rest.

No voice can sing, no heart can frame,
Nor can the memory find,
A sweeter sound than Jesus' name,
The Savior of mankind.

O hope of every contrite heart!
0 joy of all the meek!
To those who fall, how kind Thou art!
How good to those who seek!

But what to those who find? Ah! this
Nor tongue nor pen can show
The love of Jesus, what it is,
None but His loved ones know.

Jesus! our only hope be Thou,
As Thou our prize shalt be;
In Thee be all our glory now,
And through eternity.


O Sacred Head

O sacred head surrounded
By crown of piercing thorn!
O bleeding head, so wounded,
Reviled and put to scorn!
Death's pallid hue comes o'er thee,
The glow of life decays,
Yet angel hosts adore thee,
And tremble as they gaze.

I see thy strength and vigor,
All fading in the strife,
And death with cruel rigor,
Bereaving thee of life;
O agony and dying!
O love to sinners free!
Jesus, all grace supplying,
O turn thy face on me.

In this, thy bitter passion,
Good Shepherd, think of me
With thy most sweet compassion,
Unworthy though I be:
Beneath thy cross abiding
For ever would I rest,
In thy dear love confiding,
And with thy presence blest.

Be near when I am dying;
O show thy cross to me:
And to my succour flying,
Come, Lord, and set me free.
These eyes, new faith receiving,
From thee shall never move;
For he who dies believing,
Dies safely in thy love.


Marian Prayers of St. Bernard

The Memorare of St. Bernard

Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary,
that never was it known
that any one who fled to thy protection,
implored thy help,
and sought thy intercession,
was left unaided.

Inspired with this confidence,
I fly unto thee,
O Virgin of virgins, my Mother,
to thee I come,
before thee I stand sinful and sorrowful.

O Mother of the Word Incarnate!
despise not my petitions,
but, in thy mercy, hear and answer me.  Amen.

Prayer #2

By you we have access to your Son,
O blessed finder of grace,
Mother of Life,
Mother of Salvation,
that by you He may receive us,
Who by you was given to us.

Prayer #3

Mary, our Mother,
the whole world reveres you
as the holiest shrine of the living God,
for in you the salvation of the world dawned.
The Son of God was pleased to take human form from you.
You have broken down the wall of hatred,
the barrier between heaven and earth
which was set us by the disobedience of Adam and Eve.
In you heaven met earth
when divinity and humanity were joined in one person,
the God-Man.
Mother of God,
we sing your praises,
but we must praise you even more.
Our speech is too feeble to honour you as we ought,
for no tongue is eloquent enough
to express your excellence.
Mary, most powerful,
most holy, and worthy of all love.
Your name brings new life,
and the thought of you inspires love
in the hearts of those devoted to you.

Prayer #4

Of your Love, O Mary
O blessed Virgin,
did anyone ever invoke you in need
and yet fail to receive help?
Only such a person could remain silent
about your mercy.
As for us,
who are your poor servants,
we congratulate ourselves for you
on account of all your other virtues,
but we rejoice in your mercy
in a special way for ourselves.
We praise your virginity,
and we admire your humility;
but your mercy has an even sweeter taste for us sinners.
We have a preferential love for your mercy,
we remember it more often,
and we invoke it more frequently.
Who then could measure,
O blessed Lady,
the length and breadth,
height and depth of your mercy?
Its length extends indeed until the last day,
so that you may come to the aid
of all who invoke it.
Its breadth spans the whole world,
so that the whole earth is full of your mercy.
Its height is such that it brought about
the restoration of the heavenly city.
Its depth achieved the redemption of those
who sat in darkness and the shadow of death.
Thanks to you,
heaven has been populated,
hell has been emptied,
the ruins of the heavenly Jerusalem have been rebuilt,
and the unfortunate people living in hope
have been given back the life they had lost!
Thus it is that your charity,
so powerful and at the same time so gentle,
pours forth in abundance,
manifesting itself tenderly
and lending assistance effectively.


Prayer #5

Our Mediatrix and Advocate
O blessed Lady,
you found grace,
brought forth the Life,
and became the Mother of Salvation.
May you obtain the grace for us to go to the Son.
By your mediation,
may we be received by the One
who through you gave Himself to us.
May your integrity compensate with Him
for the fault of our corruption;
and may your humility,
which is pleasing to God,
implore pardon for our vanity.
May your great charity cover the multitude of our sins;
and may your glorious fecundity
confer on us a fecundity of merits.
Dear Lady,
our Mediatrix and Advocate,
reconcile us to your Son,
recommend us to Him,
and present us to your Son.
By the grace your found,
by the privilege you merited,
by the mercy you brought forth,
obtain for us the following favour,
O blessed Lady.

Prayer #6

Run, hasten, O Lady,
and in your mercy help your sinful servant,
who calls upon you,
and deliver him from the hands of the enemy.
Who will not sigh to you?
We sigh with love and grief,
for we are oppressed on every side.
How can we do otherwise than sigh to you,
O solace of the miserable,
refuge of outcasts,
ransom of captives?
We are certain that when you see our miseries,
your compassion will hasten to relieve us.
O our sovereign Lady and our Advocate,
commend us to your Son.
Grant, O blessed one,
by the grace which you have merited,
that he who through you
was graciously pleased to become a partaker
of our infirmity and misery,
may also through your intercession,
make us partakers of his happiness and glory.

Prayer #7

To you we cry,
O Queen of Mercy!
Return, that we may behold you dispensing favours,
bestowing remedies,
giving strength.
Ah, tender Mother!
Tell your all-powerful Son
that we have no more wine.
We are thirsty after the wine of His love,
of that marvelous wine
that fills souls with a holy inebriation,
inflames them,
and gives them the strength to despise
the things of this world
and to seek with ardor heavenly goods.


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