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When in 1458 Mathias Corvin was elected king of Hungary, the Hungarian magnates gathered at the royal castle of Ofen to swear in the new king. Among them was Prince Lazarus of Serbia. In honor of the guests gathered in the castle, the king organized several days of festivities and while they were enjoying themselves, a thief managed to sneak into the royal apartments, hoping to find great treasures. With the help of a master key he reached the bedroom of Prince Lazarus of Serbia. Suddenly he heard the sound of footsteps. Unable to escape, he hid under a bed, from where he witnessed a conversation between Lazarus of Serbia and his wife. The prince told him that he had not come out of respect for Mathias, but to attack his life. His wife did the impossible to divert him from this diabolical project, but without succeeding in bending her husband, who enjoined her under threats to keep silent. After the princes had fallen asleep, the thief escaped from the room, was arrested by the guards and asked to be brought before the king, because he had important secrets to tell him. His request was granted and he was brought before the king, to whom he recounted the conversation he had witnessed. As the king did not want to believe it, the bandit agreed to remain in prison until his revelations were verified. The king adopted this plan and watched the Serbian prince attentively, without the latter conceiving the slightest suspicion. One day the prince told the king that he had urgent business to return to his country and that before leaving he invited him to have lunch with him in his apartments. The king accepted. A servant brought two cups of wine, of which he presented one to the king. But Mathias invited the prince to drink first. The prince turned pale, but at the king’s command he emptied the cup with a trembling hand while his wife fainted at the sight. An hour later prince Lazarus had expired. He had died from the poison he had prepared for the king. The thief was rewarded for his service with a profitable job where he could live as an honest man. The king thanked God for his miraculous preservation.
The divine providence bursts out in these facts, and moreover one recognizes in them the truth of the proverb: “He who sets a trap for others often catches himself in it.”
Sign of the Cross
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and of the Mother of God. Amen.
O Jesus! We are going to walk with You on the road to Calvary which was so painful for You. Make us understand the greatness of Your sufferings, touch our hearts with tender compassion at the sight of Your torments, in order to increase in us the regret of our faults and the love we wish to have for You.
Deign to apply to all of us the infinite merits of Your Passion, and in memory of Your sorrows, show mercy to the souls in Purgatory, especially to those who are most abandoned.
O Divine Mary, who first taught us to make the Way of the Cross, obtain for us the grace to follow Jesus with the sentiments Your Heart was filled with as You accompanied Him on the road to Calvary. Grant that we may weep with You, and that we may love Your divine Son as You do. We ask this in the name of His adorable Heart. Amen.