Spiritual Warfare Meditation Series 


Spiritual Warfare 

St.Bernard of Clairvaux tells us:”However great may be the temptation,if we know how to use the weapon of prayer well,we shall come off as conquerors at last,for prayer is more powerful than all the demons”.

On the other hand,St.John Vianney warns us,if we aren’t praying,we’re losing the battle:”We can see how much the devil fears those who pray,since there is not a moment of the day when he tempts us more than when we’re at prayer.He does everything he possibly can to prevent us from praying.When the devil wants to make someone lose his soul,he starts out by inspiring in him a profound distaste for prayer.However good a Christian he may be,if the devil succeeds in making him either say his prayers badly or neglects them altogether,he’s certain to have that person for himself”.

Sermon on the Guardian Angels~St.Bernard 


“He hath given his angels charge over thee.” O wonderful bounty and truly great love of charity! Who? For whom? Wherefore? What has He commanded? Let us study closely, brethren, and let us diligently commit to our memory this great mandate. Who is it that commands? Whose angels are they? Whose mandates do they fulfill? Whose will do they obey? In answer, “He hath given his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.” And they do not hesitate even to life thee up in their hands.
So the Supreme Majesty has given charge to the angels. Yes, He has given charge to His own angels. Think of it! To those sublime beings, who cling to Him so joyfully and intimately, to His very own He has given charge over you! Who are you? “What is man that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man that thou visitest him?” As if man were not rottenness, and the son of man a worm! Now why, do you think, he Has given them charge over thee? — To guard thee!

With what great reverence should you treat this word! What devotion should you proffer it; what great confidence should you place in it. Reverence because of their presence; devotion because of their benevolence; confidence because of their solicitude. Walk carefully, in all thy ways, as one with whom the angels are present as He has given them charge. In every lodging, at every corner, have reverence for thy Angel. Do not dare to do in his presence what you would not dare to do if I were there. Or do you doubt that he is present whom you do not behold? What if you should hear him? What if you should touch him? What if you should scent him? Remember that the presence of something is not proved only by the sight of things.

In this, therefore, brethren, let us affectionately love His angels as one day our future coheirs; meanwhile, however, as counselors and defenders appointed by the Father and placed over us. Why should we fear under such guardians? Those who keep us in all our ways can neither be overcome nor be deceived, much less deceive. They are faithful; they are prudent; they are powerful; why do we tremble? Let us only follow them, let us remain close to them, and in the protection of the God of heaven let us abide. As often, therefore, as a most serious temptation is perceived to weigh upon you and an excessive trial is threatening, call to your guard, your leader, your helper in your needs, in your tribulation; cry to him and say: “Lord, save us; we perish!”

God Chastises The Good When They Do Not Fight Against Evil

I came across this the other night and thought how providential that I had read it because it seems to be so fitting for the times we are living in!There are only two choices:we must fight on Gods side or we die!There is so much confusion in the church today and many times we cannot even trust our own magisterium so we must really study and know our faith.If there is any doubt the saints who have gone before us have left us counsels to guide us to what is the truth.

The following is an excerpt from the speech St. Bernard addressed to the Catholic knights assembled in Vezelay in Burgundy, France, regarding the Second Crusade convoked by Pope Eugenius III on December 1, 1145.
“You know that we are living in a time of chastisement and destruction…. The laws of the land and the laws of Religion no longer have the strength to maintain the customs and stop the triumph of the evil ones. The devil of heresy is seated on the throne of truth. God has cursed His sanctuary. 

All you who hear me, make haste to calm the wrath of Heaven! Leave off imploring His goodness with futile lamentations or mortifying yourself with disciplines, but rather take up your invincible shields. The clamor of arms, the dangers, difficulties and fatigues of war, these are the penances that God imposes on you. Go to make reparation for your faults with victories against the infidels, and let the liberation of the Holy Places be the noble reward of your repentance. 

If someone were to come and announce that the enemy had just entered your cities, stolen away your wives and children, and desecrated your churches, who would not immediately rush to take up arms? Well, all these evils and others still worse have fallen on the family of Jesus Christ, which is also yours. It was dispersed by the sword of pagans; barbarians destroyed the house of God and divided His inheritance. What else must take place for you to repair so many evils and avenge so many outrages?

Will you let the infidels contemplate in peace the destruction and looting they have done in the house of the Christian people? Think of how their triumph will be the cause of inconsolable sorrow for all centuries and an eternal shame for the generation that permitted it. 

Yes, the living God has charged me with telling you that He will chastise all those who do not defend Him against His enemies. All of you, then, to arms! Let a holy ire animate you to combat, and let these words of the Prophet resound throughout the world: Cursed be he who does not bloody his sword! 

If God calls you to defend Him, it is not because His hand has become any less powerful: … Rather, God looks down at the children of man and wants to offer them the path of mercy; His goodness is giving you the day of forgiveness. He chose you as the instrument of His revenge. He wants to be indebted to you for the destruction of His enemies and the triumph of His justice. Yes, the Omnipotent God calls you to make reparation for your sins by defending His glory and His name. 

Christians warriors, these are combats worthy of you, combats that will attract the blessings of earth and Heaven, in which death itself will be for you but another triumph. Illustrious knights, remember the examples of your ancestors who conquered Jerusalem and whose names were inscribed in the Book of Life. Put on the Cross … which will earn you the conquest of the celestial kingdom.”

(História da Cruzadas, Joseph-Francois Michaud, 

Editora das Américas, vol, 2, book 6, p. 234)

St.Bernard on gossiping 


Look at that clever calumniator! He begins by fetching a deep sigh, he affects to be humble, and puts on a modest look, and with a voice choking with sobs tries to gloss over the slander which is on the tip of his tongue. One would fancy that he expressly assumed a calm and easy demeanor; for when he speaks against his brother, it is in a tender and compassionate tone. I am really hurt, says he, to find that our brother has fallen into such a sin; you all know how much I love him, and how often I have tried to correct him. It is not today that I have noticed his failing; for I should always be on my guard to speak of others, but others have spoken of it too. It would be in vain to disguise the fact; it is only too true, and with tears in my eyes I tell it to you. This poor unfortunate brother has talent, but it must be confessed that he is very guilty, and however great may be our friendship for him, it is impossible to excuse him.

~Saint Bernard of Clairvaux from a sermon~