Saint Benedict Medal
St Benedict Patron Saint of Protection
The Saint Benedict medal spread throughout the world more than 300 years ago. This was due particularly to the Benedictine monks. The medal became famous for its extraordinary effectiveness in the fight against the devil and its manifestations. It is worn in defense against evils of all kinds. It is carried against diseases, especially contagious ones, against bites of snakes and other poisonous animals. It is used for the protection of pets, vehicles, etc.
The Saint Benedict medal has been repeatedly approved and praised by the Popes. It unites the exorcizing force of the Holy Cross of the Redeemer, sign of our salvation to a reminder of the merits achieved by the excellent sanctity of the great Patriarch Saint Benedict. The Saint Benedict medal is undoubtedly a very suitable symbol for the Catholic faithful.
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St Benedict Medal Meaning
THE IMAGE OF THE CROSS REPRESENTED ON THE MEDAL
It is enough for the Christian to briefly consider the sovereign virtue of the Cross of Jesus Christ, to understand the dignity of a medal on which it is represented.
The representation of the Cross awakens in us all the feelings of gratitude towards God, for the benefit of our salvation.
The Cross causes terror to the evil spirits, who always recoil before it, and as soon as they see it they hasten to release their prey from it and flee from it.
Thus, our medal, which represents in the first place the image of the Cross, is in perfect harmony with Christian piety, and for this reason alone it is worthy of the greatest respect.
THE IMAGE OF SAINT BENEDICT REPRESENTED ON THE MEDAL
The honor of appearing on the same medal together with the image of the Holy Cross was granted to Saint Benedict in order to indicate the effectiveness that this sacred sign had in his hands.
Saint Gregory the Great, who wrote the life of the Holy Patriarch, represents him dissolving and dissipating his own temptations with the sign of the Cross. The saint then, breaking a poisoned drink with the same mark of the cross, made a chalice of the cup that contained it. He made clear the perverse design of those who had dared to attempt on his life.
When the evil spirit, to terrorize the monks, makes them see the Monastery of Montecasino in flames, Saint Benedict dispels that diabolical prodigy by making the same sign of the Passion of the Savior on the fantastic flames.
When his disciples are inwardly agitated by the tempter’s suggestions, he indicates to them to trace the image of the Cross on the heart as a remedy.
For all these reasons, it is legitimate to conclude that it was very convenient to combine in a single medal the image of the Holy Patriarch and that of the Cross of the Savior.
This becomes even clearer considering that the two great disciples of the Servant of God, Saint Placido and Saint Maurus, when performing their frequent miracles, had the custom of invoking together with the help of the Holy Cross, the name of St Benedict, their holy Founder, and thus they consecrated, from the beginning, the pious custom expressed later by the medal.
THE CHARACTERS READ ON THE MEDAL
In addition to the images of the Cross and Saint Benedict, the medal also bears a number of letters, each of which represents a Latin word.
The various words put together have a meaning that expresses the intention of the medal:
To express the relationships that exist between the holy Patriarch Benito and the Holy Cross… and at the same time, make available to the faithful an effective means of using the virtue of the Holy Cross against evil spirits.
These mysterious letters are arranged on the face of the medal in which the Holy Cross is represented.
Let us examine, first of all, the four placed between the arms of said Cross:
They mean: Cruz Sancti Patris Benedicto; in English, Cross of the Holy Father Benito.
These words explain the purpose of the medal.
The vertical line of the Cross reads:
What it means: Sacred cross sit mihi lux; In English, The Sacred Cross be my light.
On the horizontal line of the same Cross, it reads:
N. D. S. M. D.
What it means: Non draco sit mihi dux; in English, the dragon is not my guide.
By bringing these two lines together, a pentameter verse is formed, through which the Christian expresses his trust in the Holy Cross, and his resistance to the yoke that the devil would want to impose on him.
Around the medal there is a more extensive inscription, which first presents the most holy name of Jesus, expressed by the well-known monogram: IHS (In the best known model of the Saint Benedict Medal the IHS monogram was replaced by the Benedictine motto PAX; in English, Peace). Next come, from right to left, the following letters:
V. R. S. N. S. M. V. S. M. Q. L. I. V. B.
These initials represent the following two verses:
Vade retro satana; nuncuam suade mihi vana
Sunt mala quae libas; ipse poison bibas.
In English: Step back, Satan; never advise me of your vanities, the drink you offer is evil: drink your poisons yourself.
Such words are supposed to have been spoken by Saint Benedict.
Those of the first verse, on the occasion of the temptation that he felt and over which he triumphed by making the sign of the Cross.
Those of the second verse, at the moment in which his enemies presented him with a deadly drink, a fact that he revealed by blessing the chalice that contained it with the sign of life.
The Christian can use these words as many times as he or she is assaulted by temptations and insults from the invisible enemy of our salvation. The same Jesus Christ Our Lord sanctified the words Vade retro, Satana –Step back, Satan– and their value is certain, once the Gospel itself assures us of it.
The vanities that the devil advises us are the disobediences to the law of God, the pomp and false maxims of the world. The drink that the angel of darkness presents us is sin, which kills the soul.
Instead of accepting it, let us return this dismal present to him, since he himself chose it as his inheritance.
It is enough for someone to pronounce such words with faith, to feel immediately with strength to face all the onslaught of hell.
Even if we did not know the facts that show to what extent Satan fears that medal, the simple consideration of what it represents and expresses, would be enough for us to consider it one of the most powerful weapons that the goodness of God placed at our disposal against diabolical malice.
How to Use the St Benedict Medal
USE OF THE MEDAL OF SAINT BENEDICT
We are not unaware that in this century many people consider the devil to be rather an imaginary and not a real being; and thus it may seem strange that a medal is struck and blessed, used as protection against the attacks of the evil spirit.
However, the sacred Scriptures offer us innumerable passages that give an idea of the power and activity of demons, as well as the dangers of soul and body to which we are continually exposed as a result of their traps.
To annihilate their power, it is not enough to ignore the demons and smile when you hear about their operations.
This does not mean that the air will cease to continue, always full of legions of spirits of malice, as Saint Paul teaches. And, if God did not protect us, although almost always without our feeling it, through the ministry of the Holy Angels, it would be impossible for us to avoid the innumerable snares of these enemies of every creature of God.
Now, the power of the Holy Cross against Satan and his legions is such that we can consider it an invincible shield that makes us invulnerable to his arrows.
We then conclude how advantageous it is to use the Saint Benedict medal with faith on those occasions when we most fear the lies of the enemy. His protection, let us not doubt it, will be effective against all kinds of temptations.
Numerous and undeniable facts indicated his powerful help in thousands of circumstances in which, or by spontaneous action of Satan, or by effect of some spell, the faithful were on the verge of succumbing to an imminent danger. We can also use it in favor of others, as a means of preservation or liberation, in anticipation of the dangers they must face.
We are often threatened by unforeseen accidents, on land or at sea; if full of faith we carry the medal with us, we will be protected. There are no circumstances of human life, no matter how material, in which the virtue of the Holy Cross and the power of Saint Benedict have no longer manifested through them.
Thus, evil spirits, in their hatred against man, attack the animals used in their service, against the food that should sustain life; His evil intervention is often the cause of the illnesses we suffer from.
Now, experience proves that the religious use of the medal, accompanied by prayer, often brings about the cessation of satanic traps, and a remarkable relief in diseases, and sometimes even a complete cure.
St Benedict Medal Blessing
Blessing of the Saint Benedict Medal
Regarding the formula approved for the blessing of the medal, it is de rigueur; and it is not enough to make the simple sign of the Cross, normally used to apply indulgences to medals, crosses and rosaries.
The lack of a blessing that is not always easy to obtain should not, however, prevent the faithful from placing their trust in such a respectable object. Undoubtedly, this object is more worthy of consideration when it is enriched with the blessings whose source is the Church, and when the treasury of indulgences is opened in favor of the one who wears the medal. But it should not be forgotten that before being the object of such high distinction by the Holy See, numerous graces had been obtained through it.
The virtue of the medal is inherent in the sign of the cross with which it is marked and in the effigy of Saint Benedict that attracts us its protection.
The holy Name of Jesus, the words used by the Savior to reject Satan, the memory of the victories achieved by Saint Benedict over this evil spirit, are all powerful against its spells and it is to be expected that it will regress, if we use them in faith.
We therefore judge our duty to recommend to the faithful that they make all the necessary efforts to obtain the blessing of the medals; But if it is impossible for them to turn to the priests who bless them, we also urge them to put their trust in the Holy Cross and in Saint Benedict, and pray as follows:
St Benedict Medal Prayer
PRAYER TO ASK FOR SAINT BENEDICT’S PROTECTION
Most Holy Confessor of the Lord; Father and head of monks, intercede for our holiness, for our health of soul, body and mind.
He banishes from our life, from our home, the snares of the evil spirit. Deliver us from dire heresies, evil tongues and sorcery.
Ask the Lord to remedy our spiritual and bodily needs. Ask him also for the progress of the holy Catholic Church; and that my soul does not die in mortal sin, so that trusting in Your powerful intercession, I may one day in heaven sing the eternal praises. Amen.
Jesus, Mary and Joseph I love you, save lives, nations and souls.
Pray three Our Fathers, Hail Marys and Glories.
BRIEF NOVENA TO ASK FOR A GRACE
Pray the following prayer for nine consecutive days:
OH Saint Benedict, my kind protector and of all those who go to you in his troubles. Intercede for me to God to alleviate my sufferings and difficulties that now overwhelm me
(ask here for the grace you want to obtain)
I ask you with all confidence.
Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory