The Medal of Saint Benedict
by Fr. Bernardine Patterson OSB
Let us now turn to the immediate, practical use of the Medal. In what circumstances are we to make use of it? Following the instruction given in the Church's blessing, we may sum up all its uses by saying that the Medal is powerful: to ward off dangers from soul and body, to procure for us spiritual and temporal favors, and to use it as a means of gaining indulgences.
In what manner should we make use of the Medal? The words, which the Church prescribes in the authorized formula for the blessing of the Medal, are sufficiently clear in regard to the manner in which the Medal should be used in order that we may reasonably hope to receive its benefits. The requirements are first that we devoutly wear the Medal on our person, and second that we be zealous in the practice of good works.
The learned Abbot Guaranger's little book on the Medal of St. Benedict explains how the Medal is useful:
We should make use of the Medal on all occasions when we have reason to fear the snares of the enemy. Its protection will prove efficacious in every kind of temptation. Numerous and undeniable facts attest its wonderful efficacy on a thousand different occasions where the faithful were exposed to dangers either from the direct influence of the devil, or from the effects of certain evil practices. We may also employ it in favor of others to preserve or deliver them from dangers which we foresee are threatening them. Unforeseen accidents await us on land and sea; let us carry about us the Medal of St. Benedict with faith and we shall experience his protection. Even in the most common circumstances of life, in those things which regard our temporal well-being has the efficacy of the holy Cross and the power of St. Benedict been felt. The wicked spirits, in their hatred, often molest the domestic animals or do harm to the food which should sustain life. Experience has proved that the Medal of St. Benedict, made use of with faith and prayer, has often made the snares of the devil harmless, procured a visible improvement in cases of sickness, and sometimes even effected a complete cure.4
4Gueranger, Sur la Medaille ou Croix de S. Benoit.
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