Andrea Barbiani 1708 -1779
St Peter Damian
Oil on canvas
Biblioteca Classense, Ravenna
“As a monk, a bishop, and a saint, Peter Damian lived one of the Benedictine Rules completely: “Do not prefer anything to the love of Christ.” He died in 1072 and is considered to be a Doctor of the Church. St. Peter Damian helps us to remember that if we put Jesus first in our lives, the Lord will always guide us in living as his faithful disciples.”
“Pope Stephen X recognized Peter’s gifts and asked him to represent the Church in settling disputes and helping to stop practices that were preventing the Church from doing Christ’s work in the world. Peter was so skilled as a peacemaker and reformer that he advised seven popes and traveled to many places representing the Holy Father. He worked with priests, bishops, kings, and emperors—all to serve Jesus.” —RCL Benziger
Especially devoted to Our Blessed Mother, Saint Peter Damian wrote about the Blessed Virgin, as well as composed many prayers to her grace.
“O, let thy nature move thee, let thy power move thee; for the more thou art powerful, the greater should thy mercy be.”
O Mary, our own beloved advocate, since thou hast so compassionate a heart, that thou canst not even see the wretehed without being moved to pity; and since, at the same time, thou hast so great power with God that thou canst save all whom thou dost protect; disdain not to undertake the cause of us poor miserable creatures who place all our hope
If our prayers cannot move thee, at least let thine own benign heart do so; or, at least,
let thy power do so, since God has enriched thee with such great power, in order that the richer thou art in power to help us, the more merciful thou mayest be in the will to
Prayer of Saint Peter Damian to the Blessed Virgin Mary
O holy Virgin,
Mother of God,
help those who implore your assistance.
Turn toward us.
Have you perhaps forgotten us
because you have been elevated
to a position close to God?
No, certainly not.
You know well in what danger you left us.
You know the miserable condition of your servants.
No, it would not benefit such great mercy
as yours to forget such great misery as ours.
Turn toward us, then,
with your power,
for He who is powerful
has made you omnipotent in heaven and on earth.
For you, nothing is impossible.
You can raise even those who are in despair
to a hope of salvation.
There more powerful you are,
the greater should be your mercy.
Turn also to us in your love.
O Mary, that you are all kindness
and that you love us with a love
that no other love can surpass.
How often you appease the wrath of our Divine Judge,
when He is on the point of punishing us!
All the treasures of the mercy of God
are in your hands.
You will never cease to benefit us, I know,
for you are only seeking an opportunity
to save all sinners
and to shower your mercies upon them.
Your glory is increased when,
penitents are forgiven and reach heaven.
Turn, then, toward us,
so that we may also be able to go
and see you in heaven.
For the greatest glory that we can have,
after seeing God,
will be to see you,
to love you,
and to be under your protection.
So be pleased to grant our prayer;
for your beloved Son wishes to honour you
by refusing nothing that you ask.