Saint Gregory Nazianzen

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Saint Gregory Nazianzen

Archbishop of Constantinople, Doctor of the Church

Saint Gregory was born in 312 near Caesarea of Cappadocia, of parents who are both honored as Saints, and the infant was immediately consecrated to God. After learning all that he could in his native land, he journeyed to Caesarea in Palestine to study at the famous school founded by Origen, then went to Alexandria in Egypt to rejoin his brother there. After some time he embarked for Athens, the metropolis of the sciences and the humanities. During the voyage, a storm of twenty days’ duration nearly caused the loss of the ship and all passengers; their safe arrival in Athens was attributed to Saint Gregory’s prayers, and all aboard adopted Christianity.
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Our Lady of Consolation

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Our Lady of Consolation

For centuries, going back into antiquity pious Catholics have had a devotion to Our Lady as consoler. Sometimes she was given the express title of Consolation. But the practice had never been formalized. Then, immigrants from northern Italy who were seeking better conditions for work and family life brought with them their devotion to Our Lady as the mother of consolation. The devotion to her under this title spread. In 1901 the rector of the Shrine in Turin established a religious institute to spread Marian piety through this title. He was the nephew of Saint Joseph Cafasso, the priest of the gallows and who was also from Turin. Saint Joseph Cafasso wrote a prayer in preparation for death that includes his intention of seeking consolation in Our Lady. The devotion is now worldwide, including Kenya and Ethiopia. In the United States and the United Kingdom there are many parishes/shrines dedicated to her under the title of Our Lady of Consolation. What ever prayer is used there is usually an invocation for the Church, for holiness in its members, for the light of faith, and peace therein.

This is a combination of two such prayers:

O Mary Immaculate, our Mother and Consolation, I take refuge in thy most loving heart with all the confidence of which I am capable; thou shalt be the dearest object of my love and veneration. To thee, who art the dispenser of the treasures of Heaven, I shall always have recourse in my sorrows to have peace, in my doubts to have light, in my dangers to be defended, in all my needs to obtain thy assistance. Be therefore my refuge, my strength, my consolation, O Mary the Consoler! At the hour of my death, graciously receive the last sighs of my heart and obtain for me a place in thy heavenly home, where all hearts shall praise with one accord the adorable Heart of Jesus for ever more as well as thy most lovable heart, O Mary. Our tender Mother, Comforter of the afflicted, pray for us who have recourse to thee.