Prayers and Chaplet for St. Charbel
Saint Charbel was born on May 8, 1828 from a modest Maronite family in Bekaa Kafra, a village in North Lebanon. He entered the order of Lebanese monks in 1851 and was ordained a priest in 1859. Later he withdrew to the hermitage of Saints Peter and Paul to spend 23 years in prayer, fasting, manual labor, and penance, until on Christmas Eve of the year 1898 he piously gave back his soul to God. Aged 70 years. After his death, many graces and bodily cures have been obtained through his intercession. He was canonized by His Holiness Paul VI in 1977. (see more in the post found below)
The chaplet is made up of five sets of beads, three red, one white and one blue. Five black beads, divide the sets. A medal of the saint connects the beads, with a single white bead following the medal and preceding the five sets.
The red beads are for the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, the virtues by which religious share in the Passion of Christ.
The white beads represent the Holy Eucharist, and the blue beads love and devotion to Our Blessed Mother.
ORDER OF RECITATION
On the first white bead after the medal say the “Father of Truth” prayer. On each black bead recite an “Our Father”.
On the first three red beads say the “Hail Mary” in honor of Saint Charbel’s fidelity to the vow of poverty.
On the second set of red beads say the “Hail Mary” in honor of Saint Charbel’s fidelity to the vow of chastity.
On the third set of red beads say the “Hail Mary” in honor of Saint Charbel’s fidelity to the vow of obedience.
On the three white beads say the “Hail Mary” in honor of Saint Charbel’s love for the Eucharist.
On the three blue beads say the “Hail Mary” in honor of Saint Charbel’s devotion to Our Blessed Mother. Conclude with the prayer to obtain graces on the medal.
Father of Truth Prayer
Father of Truth, behold Your Son, a sacrifice pleasing to You. Accept this offering of Him who died for me; behold His blood shed on Golgotha for my salvation. It pleads for me. For His sake, accept my offering. Many are my sins, but greater is Your mercy. When placed on a scale, Your mercy prevails over the weight of the mountains known only to You. Consider the sin and consider the atonement; the atonement is greater and exceeds the sin. Your beloved Son sustained the nails and the lance because of my sins so in His sufferings You are satisfied and I live.
Prayer to Obtain Graces
Lord, infinitely holy and glorified in Your saints, You have inspired Charbel, the saint monk, to lead the perfect life of a hermit. We thank You for granting him the blessing and the strength to detach himself from the world so that the heroism of the monastic virtues of poverty, chastity, and obedience might triumph in his hermitage. We beseech You to grant us the grace of loving and serving You, following his example. Almighty God, who have manifested the power of Saint Charbel’s intercession through his countless miracles and favors, grant us this grace (here mention your intention) which we request from You through his intercession. Amen.
Lord, infinitely Holy and Glorified in Your Saints,
You have inspired Charbel, the saint monk,
to lead the perfect life of a hermit.
We thank You for granting him the blessing
and the strength to detach himself from the world
so that the heroism of the monastic virtues of poverty,
obedience, and chastity,
could triumph in his hermitage.
We beseech You to grant us the grace of loving and serving You,
following his example.
Almighty God, Who has manifested
the power of St. Charbel’s intercession
through his countless miracles and favours,
(State your intention(s) here…)
through his intercession.
O God of Silence, in stillness Your adorable and mysterious Trinity lives, loves and acts. In the silence of time, Your great Mysteries have been accomplished. Blessed is the one who quiets everything within himself and listens to the impelling voice which leads to You. Charbel heard this voice and closed himself in solitude. He separated himself from a self-seeking world and spoke with You. You taught him to deny himself and to die, like the grain of wheat. You asked him to bind himself to You in a life of poverty, chastity and obedience. Freed from himself, he discovered You, 0 Lord, embraced the way of the Cross and filled his spirit with the memory of Your Son’s passion and death. The holy Mysteries became his life, the Eucharist his real food and the Mother of God his consolation. Day and night he sought You in the Scriptures and in the lives of the saints. Through unending prayer his whole life became a living hymn of praise to You and ended in a sacrifice of love that continues to proclaim Your glory. We beseech You, through his intercession, to inspire us to a life of prayer and sacrifice. Help us to live lives of quiet dedication to the service of Your Church, forever.
For the text of the Chaplet and other prayers visit the Discerning Hearts St. Charbel Page
Memorial: 24 December
Son of a mule driver. Raised by an uncle who opposed the boy’s youthful piety. The boy’s favorite book was Thomas a Kempis’ The Imitation of Christ. At age 23 he snuck away to join the Baladite monastery of Saint Maron at Annaya where he took the name Charbel in memory of a 2nd century martyr. Professed his solemn vows in 1853. Ordained in 1859, becoming a heiromonk. He lived as a model monk, but dreamed of living like the ancient desert fathers. Hermit from 1875 until his death 23 years later, living on the bare minimums of everything. Gained a reputation for holiness and was much sought for counsel and blessing. He had a great personal devotion to the Blessed Sacrament, and was known to levitate during his prayers. Briefly paralyzed for unknown reasons just before his death on Christmas eve, 1898.
“…a hermit of the Lebanese mountain is inscribed in the number of the blessed, a new eminent member of monastic sanctity is enriching, by his example and his intercession, the entire Christian people. May he make us understand, in a world largely fascinated by wealth and comfort, the paramount value of poverty, penance and asceticism, to liberate the soul in its ascent to God…” Pope Paul VI, October 9, 1977
The Chaplet of St. Charbel – for text click here
Countless…countless…miracles are attributed to this rmarkable saint of the Middle East…St. Charbel. I didn’t know of him until a wonderful member of the Fransican Friars of the Renewal, Br. Martin Ervin introduced us to this extraordinary man.
“In the 19th century Father Charbel Makhlouf-along with a few other saintly men-had tried to live again the austere life of the desert fathers of the early church. He belonged to the Christian body known as Maronites, a group which traces its name back to Saint Maro, a friend of Saint John Chrysostom. This group of Christians, most of whom still live in Lebanon, have been united to the Western Church since the 12th century, thus bringing into Western Christendom traditions of great value that might readily have been forgotten. These traditions are ones of enormous self- discipline, and few have exemplified them better than Charbel Makhlouf.
After 23 years of this ascetic life, Charbel had a paralyzing stroke just before the consecration while celebrating the Eucharist in his chapel, and died eight days later on Christmas Eve. After his death many favors and miracles were claimed through his intercession in heaven. Today his tomb is visited by large numbers of people, not only Lebanese Maronites and not only Christians” – Mansour Mouasher
In 1950, Father George Webby, a Maronite priest from Scranton, visited Lebanon, took a photo of monks outside the wall of the monastery in which St. Charbel had lived and upon development of the picture saw that St. Charbel miraculously appeared with the monks, according to information provided by St. Anthony’s Church.
Art work for holy pictures of this saint is now taken from this photo. Can you see him? (Hint: smack dab in the middle) click on the picture and then zoom in….
St. Charbel is listed among The Incorruptibles, saints whose bodies were found intact years after burial. His body kept pouring oil and blood until the year before his canonization in 1977.
Here is a neat video entitled “The Saint Charble Song” …it’s special…