What's the real deal about Votive Candles?

Started by Elizabeth, November 16, 2022, 04:26:07 PM

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Elizabeth

Been meaning to inquire for ages.  I suspect I'm doing it wrong and do not know the correct prayers.
:pray3:

Kaesekopf

I just light a candle and pray to the saint I'm lighting a candle in front of. 

It's not magic, just devotional. 
Wie dein Sonntag, so dein Sterbetag.

I am not altogether on anybody's side, because nobody is altogether on my side.  ~Treebeard, LOTR

Jesus son of David, have mercy on me.

Elizabeth

That may have been a bit insensitive, KK. :baby4:
You know I am not looking for magic.

Kaesekopf

Quote from: Elizabeth on November 16, 2022, 08:32:55 PM
That may have been a bit insensitive, KK. :baby4:
You know I am not looking for magic.
Oh, no.  I'm sorry to have sounded ... Callous.

Just that votive candles don't really have a set formula.  I didn't think you were looking for magic - just that we shouldn't overthink certain things!  :)
Wie dein Sonntag, so dein Sterbetag.

I am not altogether on anybody's side, because nobody is altogether on my side.  ~Treebeard, LOTR

Jesus son of David, have mercy on me.

Acolyte

"From the moment we awake in the morning, let us pray continually in the words of holy David: Turn away my eyes, that they may not behold vanity"
St Alphonsus

"I will set my face against you, and you shall fall down before your enemies, and shall be made subject to them that hate you, you shall flee when no man pursueth you"
Leviticus 26:17

Stubborn

It is a very Catholic thing to light the candle, say some prayers and make requests, the candle you light is a reminder to the saint (or Whomever) and keeps reminding them of your devotion, prayers and intentions as it burns. Also, your prayer / request is repeated over and over until the candle burns out. 

Who can say if these things are in fact true, but I believe them. 
 
Even after a long life of sin, if the Christian receives the Sacrament of the dying with the appropriate dispositions, he will go straight to heaven without having to go to purgatory. - Fr. M. Philipon; This sacrament prepares man for glory immediately, since it is given to those who are departing from this life. - St. Thomas Aquinas; It washes away the sins that remain to be atoned, and the vestiges of sin; it comforts and strengthens the soul of the sick person, arousing in him a great trust and confidence in the divine mercy. Thus strengthened, he bears the hardships and struggles of his illness more easily and resists the temptation of the devil and the heel of the deceiver more readily; and if it be advantageous to the welfare of his soul, he sometimes regains his bodily health. - Council of Trent

drummerboy

I believe it also has Jewish roots.  The light which continues to burn symbolized your continuing prayers

Julio

Quote from: Stubborn on November 17, 2022, 04:28:50 AM
It is a very Catholic thing to light the candle, say some prayers and make requests, the candle you light is a reminder to the saint (or Whomever) and keeps reminding them of your devotion, prayers and intentions as it burns. Also, your prayer / request is repeated over and over until the candle burns out. 

Who can say if these things are in fact true, but I believe them. 

I echo this and God bless.

aseeker

My parish uses electronic "candles". It's just not the same. There's a lot of symbolism and meaning in an actual candle and fire.

Acolyte

Quote from: aseeker on November 19, 2022, 05:52:14 PM
My parish uses electronic "candles". It's just not the same. There's a lot of symbolism and meaning in an actual candle and fire.
A small parish where the budget is tight and the donation box isn't covering the cost, it's understandable.
"From the moment we awake in the morning, let us pray continually in the words of holy David: Turn away my eyes, that they may not behold vanity"
St Alphonsus

"I will set my face against you, and you shall fall down before your enemies, and shall be made subject to them that hate you, you shall flee when no man pursueth you"
Leviticus 26:17

Instaurare omnia

Quote from: Acolyte on November 19, 2022, 07:10:58 PM
Quote from: aseeker on November 19, 2022, 05:52:14 PM
My parish uses electronic "candles". It's just not the same. There's a lot of symbolism and meaning in an actual candle and fire.
A small parish where the budget is tight and the donation box isn't covering the cost, it's understandable.
Possibly fire insurance too in some church buildings, depending on candle adjacencies and such.
Nisi Dominus custodierit civitatem, frustra vigilat qui custodit eam (Psalm 126:2).
Benedicite, montes et colles, Domino: benedicite universa germinantia in terra, Domino (Daniel 3:75-76).
Put not your trust in princes: In the children of men, in whom there is no salvation (Psalm 145:2-3).

aseeker


A small parish where the budget is tight and the donation box isn't covering the cost, it's understandable.
[/quote]
Possibly fire insurance too in some church buildings, depending on candle adjacencies and such.
[/quote]

Umm yes, all of those modern liability concerns. Takes all the fun out of it lol.

Elizabeth

Ah, real candles are a litmus test for me.  When Old St. Marys in DC went to electric candles, I knew it would be taken over.  Same with the Franciscan Monastery.  For me, there is just no excuse.  Candle safety is really no big problem, or if it is it can be easily remedied. 

Lynne

Quote from: Elizabeth on November 20, 2022, 07:52:03 AM
Candle safety is really no big problem, or if it is it can be easily remedied.

Exactly. If they're going to be consistent, i.e. lit candles are dangerous, than they shouldn't have a lit sanctuary candle either.

I have, unfortunately, seen electric versions of those too.

And of course, no church ever burnt down because of an electrical fire...  ::)
In conclusion, I can leave you with no better advice than that given after every sermon by Msgr Vincent Giammarino, who was pastor of St Michael's Church in Atlantic City in the 1950s:

    "My dear good people: Do what you have to do, When you're supposed to do it, The best way you can do it,   For the Love of God. Amen"