No Sensus Catholicus, No Common Sense
by Thomas A. Droleskey
Truth is simple. God instructs to do certain things, such as to love Him with our hearts, minds, bodies, souls and strength, and not to do certain things, such as those proscribed in the Ten Commandments and contained also in the binding precepts of the Natural Law that have been entrusted exclusively to the Catholic Church for their safekeeping and infallible explication. Although it is possible to know moral truths by reason alone, it is only as a result of the Deposit of Faith, that is, Supernatural Revelation, and by the graces won for us as a result of the shedding of every single drop of Our Lord's Most Precious Blood that we can understand those truths in their proper light and then conform our lives accordingly as members of the Catholic Church. Those who lack the Catholic Faith--and those Catholics who have been robbed on the sensus Catholics because of their surrender to the assaults of popular culture and/or those of conciliarism--lose all common sense sooner rather than later, making it very difficult for them to make any sense at all of what goes on in this passing vale of tears.
Pope Leo XIII wrote about this throughout his pontificate, doing so in Tametsi Futura Prospicientibus, November 1, 1900:
The whole object of Christian doctrine and morality is that "we being dead to sin, should live to justice" (I Peter ii., 24)-that is, to virtue and holiness. In this consists the moral life, with the certain hope of a happy eternity. This justice, in order to be advantageous to salvation, is nourished by Christian faith. "The just man liveth by faith" (Galatians iii., II). "Without faith it is impossible to please God" (Hebrews xi., 6). Consequently Jesus Christ, the creator and preserver of faith, also preserves and nourishes our moral life. This He does chiefly by the ministry of His Church. To Her, in His wise and merciful counsel, He has entrusted certain agencies which engender the supernatural life, protect it, and revive it if it should fail. This generative and conservative power of the virtues that make for salvation is therefore lost, whenever morality is dissociated from divine faith. A system of morality based exclusively on human reason robs man of his highest dignity and lowers him from the supernatural to the merely natural life. Not but that man is able by the right use of reason to know and to obey certain principles of the natural law. But though he should know them all and keep them inviolate through life-and even this is impossible without the aid of the grace of our Redeemer-still it is vain for anyone without faith to promise himself eternal salvation. "If anyone abide not in Me, he shall be cast forth as a branch, and shall wither, and they shall gather him up and cast him into the fire, and he burneth" john xv., 6). "He that believeth not shall be condemned" (Mark xvi., 16). We have but too much evidence of the value and result of a morality divorced from divine faith. How is it that, in spite of all the zeal for the welfare of the masses, nations are in such straits and even distress, and that the evil is daily on the increase? We are told that society is quite able to help itself; that it can flourish without the assistance of Christianity, and attain its end by its own unaided efforts. Public administrators prefer a purely secular system of government. All traces of the religion of our forefathers are daily disappearing from political life and administration. What blindness! Once the idea of the authority of God as the Judge of right and wrong is forgotten, law must necessarily lose its primary authority and justice must perish: and these are the two most powerful and most necessary bonds of society. Similarly, once the hope and expectation of eternal happiness is taken away, temporal goods will be greedily sought after. Every man will strive to secure the largest share for himself. Hence arise envy, jealousy, hatred. The consequences are conspiracy, anarchy, nihilism. There is neither peace abroad nor security at home. Public life is stained with crime.
So great is this struggle of the passions and so serious the dangers involved, that we must either anticipate ultimate ruin or seek for an efficient remedy. It is of course both right and necessary to punish malefactors, to educate the masses, and by legislation to prevent crime in every possible way: but all this is by no means sufficient. The salvation of the nations must be looked for higher. A power greater than human must be called in to teach men's hearts, awaken in them the sense of duty, and make them better. This is the power which once before saved the world from destruction when groaning under much more terrible evils. Once remove all impediments and allow the Christian spirit to revive and grow strong in a nation, and that nation will be healed. The strife between the classes and the masses will die away; mutual rights will be respected. If Christ be listened to, both rich and poor will do their duty. The former will realise that they must observe justice and charity, the latter self-restraint and moderation, if both are to be saved. Domestic life will be firmly established ( by the salutary fear of God as the Lawgiver. In the same way the precepts of the natural law, which dictates respect for lawful authority and obedience to the laws, will exercise their influence over the people. Seditions and conspiracies will cease. Wherever Christianity rules over all without let or hindrance there the order established by Divine Providence is preserved, and both security and prosperity are the happy result. The common welfare, then, urgently demands a return to Him from whom we should never have gone astray; to Him who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life,-and this on the part not only of individuals but of society as a whole. We must restore Christ to this His own rightful possession. All elements of the national life must be made to drink in the Life which proceedeth from Him- legislation, political institutions, education, marriage and family life, capital and labour. Everyone must see that the very growth of civilisation which is so ardently desired depends greatly upon this, since it is fed and grows not so much by material wealth and prosperity, as by the spiritual qualities of morality and virtue.
By way of re-emphasis:
"We are told that society is quite able to help itself; that it can flourish without the assistance of Christianity, and attain its end by its own unaided efforts. Public administrators prefer a purely secular system of government. All traces of the religion of our forefathers are daily disappearing from political life and administration. What blindness! Once the idea of the authority of God as the Judge of right and wrong is forgotten, law must necessarily lose its primary authority and justice must perish: and these are the two most powerful and most necessary bonds of society. Similarly, once the hope and expectation of eternal happiness is taken away, temporal goods will be greedily sought after. Every man will strive to secure the largest share for himself. Hence arise envy, jealousy, hatred. The consequences are conspiracy, anarchy, nihilism. There is neither peace abroad nor security at home. Public life is stained with crime.. . . .
All elements of the national life must be made to drink in the Life which proceedeth from Him--legislation, political institutions, education, marriage and family life, capital and labour. Everyone must see that the very growth of civilisation which is so ardently desired depends greatly upon this, since it is fed and grows not so much by material wealth and prosperity, as by the spiritual qualities of morality and virtue."
Thus it is that world leaders are at a loss to explain why their "peace plans" continue to fail to produce "peace."
Thus it is that national and state and local leaders are at a loss to explain why hordes of young hoodlums commit random acts of violence against complete strangers.
Thus it is that the average citizen, desperate for some answers to the problems in the world, will invent "popes" (politicians, radio and television talk show hosts, other entertainers and secularly celebrated persons) to guide them to "understand" the world better and how to make it better.
Thus it is that the average Catholic, having been robbed of the immutable teaching that every aspect of a nation's life is meant to be subordinated to Christ the King and Mary our Immaculate Queen, falls prey to the grand schemes of conservatives and libertarians to "fix" problems that have their remote origin in Original Sin and their proximate sources in the rise of the anti-Incarnational errors of Modernity. Among those errors are the overthrow of the Social Reign of Christ the King and the acceptance of cultural pluralism and religious indifferentism as social goods, not objective evils that are offensive to God's truths and deleterious to the good of souls.
Thus it is that social reformers think that this or that structural reform in society will produce a change in behavior in this or that group of citizens, convincing themselves and large numbers of people that the government must spend vast sums of money to design and to implement colossal experiments in social engineering to create the better and safer world.
To wit, the police chief of the District of Columbia said the following when asked to comment on a spree of violence, including the slitting of the throat of a British tourist in the Georgetown part of Washington, D.C., in the nation's capital in the past two weeks:
It makes no sense to me.
A country that has never been beholden to the sensus Catholicus, except in the vestigial after-effects of Christendom that have been eroded almost entirely (yes, even in the lives of practicing Catholics) in the course of the past 230 years, can never make sense of the events of this passing world. Those blinded by the effects of Protestantism and Freemasonry and the myriad of the complex and inter-related "philosophies" and "theories" that have emerged and then mutated constantly during Modernity will be completely unable to make any sense of world events. Those so blinded by the effects of Modernity will be unable to see the true connection between events. They will be unable to recognize that the only real way to ameliorate social problems is for individuals to try to reform their lives in cooperation with the Sanctifying Graces administered by the working of the Holy Ghost in the sacraments entrusted to the Catholic Church by her Divine Bridegroom, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
Problems aplenty existed in the Middle Ages, the era of Christendom, which was never free from scandals and difficulties. Unlike our own prideful era, however, the people of Christendom understood why social problems existed--the darkened intellect and the weakened will each human being has as the vestigial after-effects of Original Sin, which prompt people to commit Actual Sins--and how those problems were to be lessened by the reform of individual souls in cooperation with Sanctifying Grace.
Pope Pius XII discussed this quite directly in his first encyclical letter, Summi Pontificatus, October 10, 1939 (which was my late father's twentieth birthday):
The present age, Venerable Brethren, by adding new errors to the doctrinal aberrations of the past, has pushed these to extremes which lead inevitably to a drift towards chaos. Before all else, it is certain that the radical and ultimate cause of the evils which We deplore in modern society is the denial and rejection of a universal norm of morality as well for individual and social life as for international relations; We mean the disregard, so common nowadays, and the forgetfulness of the natural law itself, which has its foundation in God, Almighty Creator and Father of all, supreme and absolute Lawgiver, all-wise and just Judge of human actions. When God is hated, every basis of morality is undermined; the voice of conscience is stilled or at any rate grows very faint, that voice which teaches even to the illiterate and to uncivilized tribes what is good and what is bad, what lawful, what forbidden, and makes men feel themselves responsible for their actions to a Supreme Judge.
The denial of the fundamentals of morality had its origin, in Europe, in the abandonment of that Christian teaching of which the Chair of Peter is the depository and exponent. That teaching had once given spiritual cohesion to a Europe which, educated, ennobled and civilized by the Cross, had reached such a degree of civil progress as to become the teacher of other peoples, of other continents. But, cut off from the infallible teaching authority of the Church, not a few separated brethren have gone so far as to overthrow the central dogma of Christianity, the Divinity of the Savior, and have hastened thereby the progress of spiritual decay.
The Holy Gospel narrates that when Jesus was crucified "there was darkness over the whole earth" (Matthew xxvii. 45); a terrifying symbol of what happened and what still happens spiritually wherever incredulity, blind and proud of itself, has succeeded in excluding Christ from modern life, especially from public life, and has undermined faith in God as well as faith in Christ. The consequence is that the moral values by which in other times public and private conduct was gauged have fallen into disuse; and the much vaunted civilization of society, which has made ever more rapid progress, withdrawing man, the family and the State from the beneficent and regenerating effects of the idea of God and the teaching of the Church, has caused to reappear, in regions in which for many centuries shone the splendors of Christian civilization, in a manner ever clearer, ever more distinct, ever more distressing, the signs of a corrupt and corrupting paganism: "There was darkness when they crucified Jesus" (Roman Breviary, Good Friday, Response Five).
Many perhaps, while abandoning the teaching of Christ, were not fully conscious of being led astray by a mirage of glittering phrases, which proclaimed such estrangement as an escape from the slavery in which they were before held; nor did they then foresee the bitter consequences of bartering the truth that sets free, for error which enslaves. They did not realize that, in renouncing the infinitely wise and paternal laws of God, and the unifying and elevating doctrines of Christ's love, they were resigning themselves to the whim of a poor, fickle human wisdom; they spoke of progress, when they were going back; of being raised, when they groveled; of arriving at man's estate, when they stooped to servility. They did not perceive the inability of all human effort to replace the law of Christ by anything equal to it; "they became vain in their thoughts" (Romans i. 21).
With the weakening of faith in God and in Jesus Christ, and the darkening in men's minds of the light of moral principles, there disappeared the indispensable foundation of the stability and quiet of that internal and external, private and public order, which alone can support and safeguard the prosperity of States.
It is true that even when Europe had a cohesion of brotherhood through identical ideals gathered from Christian preaching, she was not free from divisions, convulsions and wars which laid her waste; but perhaps they never felt the intense pessimism of today as to the possibility of settling them, for they had then an effective moral sense of the just and of the unjust, of the lawful and of the unlawful, which, by restraining outbreaks of passion, left the way open to an honorable settlement. In Our days, on the contrary, dissensions come not only from the surge of rebellious passion, but also from a deep spiritual crisis which has overthrown the sound principles of private and public morality.
Conciliarism does not teach this any longer, thus producing Catholics who are as clueless about the source of social problems as non-Catholics, making them all too prone to trust in the secular "popes" referred to earlier.
The sensus Catholicus teaches us that men must be in a state of Sanctifying Grace in order to know what God has revealed exclusively through His Catholic Church and then to choose to act in conformity with that Revelation. Being in a state of Sanctifying Grace is no guarantor that one will see the world clearly or choose wisely. However, it is the necessary precondition for seeing the world clearly and choosing wisely.
Pope Pius XI, writing in Divini Illius Magistri, December 31, 1929, noted this precise point:
This truth is clearly set forth by Pius X of saintly memory:
Whatever a Christian does even in the order of things of earth, he may not overlook the supernatural; indeed he must, according to the teaching of Christian wisdom, direct all things towards the supreme good as to his last end; all his actions, besides, in so far as good or evil in the order of morality, that is, in keeping or not with natural and divine law, fall under the judgment and jurisdiction of the Church.
It is worthy of note how a layman, an excellent writer and at the same time a profound and conscientious thinker, has been able to understand well and express exactly this fundamental Catholic doctrine:
The Church does not say that morality belongs purely, in the sense of exclusively, to her; but that it belongs wholly to her. She has never maintained that outside her fold and apart from her teaching, man cannot arrive at any moral truth; she has on the contrary more than once condemned this opinion because it has appeared under more forms than one. She does however say, has said, and will ever say, that because of her institution by Jesus Christ, because of the Holy Ghost sent her in His name by the Father, she alone possesses what she has had immediately from God and can never lose, the whole of moral truth, omnem veritatem, in which all individual moral truths are included, as well those which man may learn by the help of reason, as those which form part of revelation or which may be deduced from it. . . .
While treating of education, it is not out of place to show here how an ecclesiastical writer, who flourished in more recent times, during the Renaissance, the holy and learned Cardinal Silvio Antoniano, to whom the cause of Christian education is greatly indebted, has set forth most clearly this well established point of Catholic doctrine. He had been a disciple of that wonderful educator of youth, St. Philip Neri; he was teacher and Latin secretary to St. Charles Borromeo, and it was at the latter's suggestion and under his inspiration that he wrote his splendid treatise on The Christian Education of Youth. In it he argues as follows:
The more closely the temporal power of a nation aligns itself with the spiritual, and the more it fosters and promotes the latter, by so much the more it contributes to the conservation of the commonwealth. For it is the aim of the ecclesiastical authority by the use of spiritual means, to form good Christians in accordance with its own particular end and object; and in doing this it helps at the same time to form good citizens, and prepares them to meet their obligations as members of a civil society. This follows of necessity because in the City of God, the Holy Roman Catholic Church, a good citizen and an upright man are absolutely one and the same thing. How grave therefore is the error of those who separate things so closely united, and who think that they can produce good citizens by ways and methods other than those which make for the formation of good Christians. For, let human prudence say what it likes and reason as it pleases, it is impossible to produce true temporal peace and tranquillity by things repugnant or opposed to the peace and happiness of eternity.
The world in which we live believes that it is indeed entirely possible to "produce true temporal peace and tranquility" by things that are completely repugnant and totally oppose to the peace and happiness of eternity, which is the only foundation of a well-ordered soul and thus a well-ordered society.
The world in which we live goes about its business as though the state of individual souls is a matter of complete indifference to the common good of a community or a state or a nation, no less to the world-at-large.
The world in which we live convinces us that this or that legislative proposal or this or that election is earth shattering, that the future of humanity depends upon our aiding and abetting the organized caste of criminals known as career politicians (and the direct-mail interest groups that exist in a symbiotic relationship with them to pick our pockets in order to "solve" social problems and/or to prevent this or that less evil person from gaining power) rather than on the conversion of this and all nations to Catholicism. This gets people all riled up and has them running around like rats in a maze rather than spending time on their knees before the Blessed Sacrament in prayer to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. This convinces people that they must spend their time keeping "informed" by listening to the mindless blather of ignoramuses who know nothing--and care less--about First and Last Things rather than praying as many Rosaries each and every day as their state-in-life permits.
Pope Leo XIII put the matter well in A Review of His Pontificate, 1902:
So society in its foolhardy effort to escape from God has rejected the Divine order and Revelation; and it is thus withdrawn from the salutary efficacy of Christianity which is manifestly the most solid guarantee of order, the strongest bond of fraternity, and the inexhaustible source of all public and private virtue. This sacrilegious divorce has resulted in bringing about the trouble which now disturbs the world. Hence it is the pale of the Church which this lost society must re-enter, if it wishes to recover its well-being, its repose, and its salvation.
Just as Christianity cannot penetrate into the soul without making it better, so it cannot enter into public life without establishing order. With the idea of a God Who governs all, Who is infinitely wise, good, and just, the idea of duty seizes upon the consciences of men. It assuages sorrow, it calms hatred, it engenders heroes. If it has transformed pagan society--and that transformation was a veritable resurrection--for barbarism disappeared in proportion as Christianity extended its sway, so, after the terrible shocks which unbelief has given to the world in our days, it will be able to put that world again on the true road, and bring back to order the States and peoples of modern times. But the return of Christianity will not be efficacious and complete if it does not restore the world to a sincere love of the one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. In the Catholic Church Christianity is Incarnate. It identifies itself with that perfect, spiritual, and, in its own order, sovereign society, which is the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ and which has for Its visible head the Roman Pontiff, successor of the Prince of the Apostles. It is the continuation of the mission of the Savior, the daughter and the heiress of His Redemption. It has preached the Gospel, and has defended it at the price of Its blood, and strong in the Divine Assistance and of that immortality which has been promised It, It makes no terms with error but remains faithful to the commands which It has received, to carry the doctrine of Jesus Christ to the uttermost limits of the world and to the end of time, and to protect It in Its inviolable integrity. Legitimate dispenser of the Teachings of the Gospel It does not reveal Itself only as the consoler and Redeemer of souls, but It is still more the internal source of Justice and Charity, and the Propagator as well as the Guardian of True Liberty, and of that equality which alone is possible here below. In applying the doctrine of its Divine Founder, It maintains a wise equilibrium and marks the True Limits between the rights and privileges of society. The equality which it proclaims does not destroy the distinction between the different social classes It keeps them intact, as nature itself demands, in order to oppose the anarchy of reason emancipated from Faith, and abandoned to its own devices. The liberty which it gives in no wise conflicts with the rights of Truth, because those rights are superior to the demands of liberty. Not does it infringe upon the rights of Justice, because those rights are superior to the claims of mere numbers or power. Nor does it assail the rights of God because they are superior to the rights of humanity.
The world needs the Catholic Church to provide it with the sensus Catholicus in order to have any modicum of common sense. Personal insanity and governmental totalitarianism are among two of the chief consequences of a world where the Catholic Church is not seen as the one and only true mater and magister of all men in all countries for all times until Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ comes as the Judge of the Living and the Dead on the Last Day. Men will scratch their heads about things that are understood easily if they recognize the ravages of the Fall and the necessity of relying upon the Catholic Church to guide them in all truth and to provide them with the supernatural helps to live in accordance with those truths. Men will be consigned, as noted recently on this site, to endless cycles of bloodshed and violence having nothing to do with truly just causes until and unless they subordinate themselves and their nations to Christ the King and Mary or Immaculate Queen.
More than ever, ladies and gentlemen, we need to withdraw from the addiction of television and radio. Yes, this is coming from a former news addict. However, the operative word here is former. One can keep reasonably informed without having his senses bombarded by round-the-clock, highly-sensationalized and over-dramatized "on-the-scene" reporting. The saints did not need such things to keep themselves informed about events the world. Indeed, the death of Saint Bonaventure, whose feast day is today, July 14, spread so rapidly that Pope Gregory X's command that all of the priests of the world offer the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass for this great exponent of the Blessed Sacrament and Holy Poverty was fulfilled in a very short period of time. The Communion of Saints, ladies and gentlemen, can keep us more informed than anyone named O'Reilly or Hannity or Limbaugh, believe me.
Saint Bonaventure instituted a feast in 1272 in honor of his friend, King Louis IX, King of France, whom he knew to be a true exemplar of the Social Reign of Christ the King. King Louis, a ruler described by many as a man of sound common sense, was not beatified at that time. Saint Bonaventure, having known that King Louis heard two Masses a day, started the process by which this great ruler of Christendom, truly a king for all times, would be canonized and raised to the altars of the Church. We need to pray to Saint Bonaventure that we will have the likes of Saint Louis IX soon after Our Lady's Fatima Message is fulfilled and Tradition is restored in the Church and Christendom is restored in the world.
Until that occurs, though, we must continue steadfast in prayer, especially before the Blessed Sacrament and to the Mother of God through her Most Holy Rosary, beseeching God that we will be able to be so possessed of the sensus Catholicus that we reject all secular philosophies and approaches to the problems of the world as emanating from only one place: Hell, a vision of which was shown by Our Lady to Jacinta and Francisco Marto and Lucia dos Santos eighty-nine years ago yesterday, July 13. Want a place in Heaven? Think as Heaven wants us to think. Think as Catholics. Think supernaturally at all times. Speak supernaturally at all times. Proclaim the banner of Christ the King and Mary our Immaculate Queen without fear of any worldly consequences.
Our Lord really meant it when He said:
For what shall it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, and suffer the loss of his soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? For he that shall be ashamed of me, and of my words, in this adulterous and sinful generation: the Son of man also will be ashamed of him, when he shall come in the glory of his Father with the holy angels. (Mk. 8:36-38)
Vivat Christus Rex!
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Bonaventure, pray for us.
Saints Felix and Nabor, pray for us.
Pope Saint Anacletus, pray for us.
Saint Augustine, pray for us.
Saint Thomas Aquinas, pray for us.
Saint Vincent Ferrer, pray for us.
Saint Sebastian, pray for us.
Saint Tarcisius, pray for us.
Saint Lucy, pray for us.
Saint Agnes, pray for us.
Saint Agatha, pray for us.
Saint Bridget of Sweden, pray for us.
Saint Catherine of Sweden, pray for us.
Saint Philomena, pray for us.
Saint John of the Cross, pray for us.
Saint John Bosco, pray for us.
Saint John Mary Vianney, pray for us.
Saint Teresa of Avila, pray for us.
Saint Therese Lisieux, pray for us.
Saint Bernadette Soubirous, pray for us.
Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich, pray for us.
Blessed Pauline Jaricot, pray for us.
Blessed Francisco, pray for us.
Blessed Jacinta, pray for us.
Sister Lucia, pray for us.
The Longer Version of the Saint Michael the Archangel Prayer, composed by Pope Leo XIII, 1888
O glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Prince of the heavenly host, be our defense in the terrible warfare which we carry on against principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, spirits of evil. Come to the aid of man, whom God created immortal, made in His own image and likeness, and redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil. Fight this day the battle of our Lord, together with the holy angels, as already thou hast fought the leader of the proud angels, Lucifer, and his apostate host, who were powerless to resist thee, nor was there place for them any longer in heaven. That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan who seduces the whole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels. Behold this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage. Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the Name of God and of His Christ, to seize upon, slay, and cast into eternal perdition, souls destined for the crown of eternal glory. That wicked dragon pours out. as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity. These most crafty enemies have filled and inebriated with gall and bitterness the Church, the spouse of the Immaculate Lamb, and have laid impious hands on Her most sacred possessions. In the Holy Place itself, where has been set up the See of the most holy Peter and the Chair of Truth for the light of the world, they have raised the throne of their abominable impiety with the iniquitous design that when the Pastor has been struck the sheep may be scattered. Arise then, O invincible Prince, bring help against the attacks of the lost spirits to the people of God, and give them the victory. They venerate thee as their protector and patron; in thee holy Church glories as her defense against the malicious powers of hell; to thee has God entrusted the souls of men to be established in heavenly beatitude. Oh, pray to the God of peace that He may put Satan under our feet, so far conquered that he may no longer be able to hold men in captivity and harm the Church. Offer our prayers in the sight of the Most High, so that they may quickly conciliate the mercies of the Lord; and beating down the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, do thou again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations. Amen.
Verse: Behold the Cross of the Lord; be scattered ye hostile powers.
Response: The Lion of the Tribe of Juda has conquered the root of David.
Verse: Let Thy mercies be upon us, O Lord.
Response: As we have hoped in Thee.
Verse: O Lord hear my prayer.
Response: And let my cry come unto Thee.
Verse: Let us pray. O God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we call upon Thy holy Name, and as suppliants, we implore thy clemency, that by the intercession of Mary, ever Virgin, immaculate and our Mother, and of the glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Thou wouldst deign to help us against Satan and all other unclean spirits, who wander about the world for the injury of the human race and the ruin of our souls.