Our Lady of the Wayside

Our Lady of the Wayside
Protect Expectant Mothers and Their Babies


Wednesday 11 August 2010

St Philomena and Her Cord, A Powerful Sacramental

A supporter very kindly knitted some beautiful woollen sweaters for babies. One cheerfully coloured jumper has a clever design feature. In this case, the Cord of St. Philomena has been stitched around the neckline, and gives the effect of a little ruffled collar. The Cord of St. Philomena has the most marvellous promises, including protection against accidents and evils of every kind. The Holy Curé of Ars blessed and distributed a great many of the Cords. The Cord has been approved by the Sacred Congregation of Rites. A very fortunate little babe will wear this jumper!

Now that St. Philomena’s feast day (or you may know her as the Wonder Worker) is being celebrated today (in the Old Rite), we invoke her intercession especially in the cause of helping women under pressure to be sexually active, or women who are victims of violence. St. Philomena was subjected to foul torture – scourged like Our Lord until like Him, she was unrecognisable. She was then thrown into the Tiber with an anchor tied around her neck and eventually murdered by decapitation. Why? St. Philomena was merely thirteen years old, and her ‘offence’ was that she refused the sexual advances of the Roman Emperor. We pray to St. Philomena for young for young girls who want to stay pure but whose peers goad them into ‘sleeping around’. We pray for the adults who throw ‘a blind eye’ to the sexual abuse of girls as young as ten or eleven. We pray that these guardians of young girls will realise that they need to take responsibility in protecting vulnerable children and young teenagers. These adults may be the GP who puts a young girl on the Pill so that her boyfriend (or as is can happen– the mother’s boyfriend) may take advantage of the girl. We pray for teachers who urge young girls to become sexually active, and give no advice or help if a girl is pressurised into exploitative sexual relationships. We also pray for the young girls who are treated as if they have committed a crime by not sleeping around.

Indulgences Attached to St Philomena's Cord
By wearing it (usually around the waist) we may merit a Plenary Indulgence on the following days when the cord is worn for the first time; on May 25th, anniversary of opening of Saint Philomena's tomb – in the catacombs of Saint Priscilla. Or today, August 11th, her proper feast day. A plenary indulgence may also be sought on December 15, which is the anniversary of the approbation of the cord by the Holy See. And if one is wearing the Cord at the moment of death. The usual conditions for obtaining a Plenary Indulgence must be met.
Mary O'Regan

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