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St. Cecilia
Martyr and Patron of Music



An exquisitely-detailed sterling medal, cast from an antique, illustrates St. Cecilia playing the organ.  The beads are rare 10mm Swarovski cubes, in an elegantly sumptuous color called Crystal Tabac --- a smoky quartz gleaming with inner fire, glowing with bronze luster!  The chaplet is completed with a sterling crucifix.


Your rosary will be packaged in an elegant hinged jewelry box, 
with pamphlet describing the provenance and prayers

See our catalog for available rosaries and chaplets.
Below are examples of previous designs.
Write us to inquire about a custom design!


On The Crucifix pray the Apostles Creed followed by:
St. Cecilia, glorious Virgin and Martyr of Jesus Christ, I admire the courage with which you professed your faith in the face of severe persecution, and the generous love with which you offered your life in witness to your belief in the Blessed Trinity. I thank God with you for the wonderful graces He had bestowed upon you to make your life holy and pleasing to Him even in the midst of the wealth that was yours. I thank Him for the privilege offered to you of receiving the glorious crown of martyrdom.

Saint Cecilia, I also admire the purity of love that bound you to the Savior, which was greater in your eyes than any human affection, so that you declared yourself before the enemies of the Church, "I am the bride of my Lord Jesus Christ." Pray for me that in imitation of you I may keep my body pure and my soul holy, and that I may love Jesus with all my heart.

In these times so full of pleasure seeking and so lacking in faith, teach us to profess our faith courageously and to be willing to sacrifice ourselves in practicing it, so that our good example may lead others closer to Christ and the Church He as founded.

On the Bead sets:
In thanksgiving to God for the graces he bestowed on St Cecilia pray:
1 Our Father, 1 Hail Mary, and 1 Glory be on.
At the end of each bead set say:
St. Cecilia, Virgin and Martyr of Jesus Christ, pray for us.

On the medal of Saint Cecilia say:
St. Cecilia, I confide in your intercession because you generously offered your life as a sacrifice for the love of Jesus, to whom you were devoted with your whole heart and soul. Jesus will not refuse your prayers. Beg Jesus to grant me this favor:
(Mention your request.)
For the sake of Jesus Christ, Who filled your heart with pure and heroic love, Who crowned you with the glorious crown of martyrdom, Who permitted your body to remain incorrupt through these many centuries, and Who willed that your memory be praised by the Church at every Holy Day Mass, I earnestly ask you to intercede for me. I resign myself entirely to the Holy Will of God. Help me to imitate your faith and love of God, that I may be ready to make any sacrifice for my Catholic faith. Through your prayers may I someday reach heaven and praise with you the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the loving Spouse of your soul and mine. Amen.


Additional prayers, optional


Prayer to Saint Cecilia
O glorious saint, who chose to die
Instead of denying your King,
We pray you please to help us
As His fair praise we sing!

We lift our hearts in joyous song
To honor Him this way,
And while we sing, remembering,
To sing is to doubly pray.

At once in our hearts and in our tongues
We offer double prayer
Sent heavenward on winged notes
To praise God dwelling there.

While in our hearts and tongues we try
With song to praise God twice,
We ask dear saint, to help us be
United close to Christ!


Prayer Invoking the Intercession of St. Cecilia

O Eternal God, Who gave us, in the person of St. Cecilia, a powerful protectress, grant that after having faithfully passed our days, like herself, in innocence and holiness, we may one day attain the land of beatitude, where in concert with her, we may praise You and bless You forevermore in eternity. Amen.

Prayer to St. Cecilia

O gentle Cecilia, sweet voice and melody of the Heart of Jesus. We come to you to beg your assistance. Pray for us Cecilia, teach us to sing to glories of God and also for the Glory of God. Give us the voice to sing the "Ave" as you did at the hour of your martyrdom. Pray for us o martyr with a singing heart. Amen.

Litany of Saint Cecilia

Lord, have mercy on us.
   Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us. Christ hear us.
   Christ, graciously hear us.

God the Father of heaven,
   Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
   Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit,
   Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God,
   Have mercy on us.

Holy Mary, Mother of God,
   Pray for us. (repeat after each line)
Saint Cecilia,
Saint Cecilia, wise virgin,
Saint Cecilia, whose heart burned with the fire of divine love,
Saint Cecilia, apostle by your zeal and charity,
Saint Cecilia, who converted your spouse and procured for him the crown of martyrdom,
Saint Cecilia, who by your pleadings moved the hearts of pagans, and brought them into the true Church,
Saint Cecilia, who did unceasingly see your guardian angel by your side,
Saint Cecilia, who mingled your voice with the celestial harmonies of the virgins,
Saint Cecilia, who by your melodious accents celebrated the praises of Jesus,
Saint Cecilia, illustrious martyr of Jesus Christ,
Saint Cecilia, who during three days suffered most excruciating torments,
Saint Cecilia, consolation of the afflicted,
Saint Cecilia, protectress of all who invoke you,
Saint Cecilia, patroness of holy canticles,
Saint Cecilia, special patroness and advocate of all singers, musicians, authors, and students,

We salute you, O Virgin, who gave your blood for the defense and faith of Jesus Christ.

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world,
   Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world,
   Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world,
   Have mercy on us.

God glorified Saint Cecilia,
   And he crowned her virtues.

Let us pray. O Eternal God, who gave us, in the person of Saint Cecilia, a powerful protectress, grant that after having faithfully passed our days, like herself, in innocence and holiness, we may one day attain the land of beatitude, where in concert with her, we may praise you and bless you forevermore in eternity. Amen.

Hymn in Honor of St. Cecilia

This hymn was approved by the Apostolic See in 1852.

Now haste ye to your crowns, cries Cecilia to her brethren; and soon the virgin herself is led before the judge.

She despises his angry threats and laughs at his false gods' wherefore the innocent maiden is declared deserving of death.

She remains long enclosed in the bath, while the furnace rages beneath; but stronger is the divine fire that burns in the virgin's heart.

Thrice does the barbarous lictor strike the innocent victim: he cannot accomplish his crime, for Christ has granted a delay to the martyr.

As her last hour draws nigh, she devotes her ancestral mansion to God, then free she wings her flight to the nuptials of the Lamb.

Hail! body of the martyr, long hidden in the sombre crypt; shining with a new glory, thou art restored to thy mother Rome.

The Virgin of virgins watches over thee, lest thou fade as a flower in the darkness, while thou liest empurpled with the blood of thy martyrdom, and clad in thy golden robe.

Sleep in thy silent marble tomb, while they spirit enthroned in heaven hymns its glad joy, and graciously receives our prayers.

May the happy choirs of virgins praise thee, O Jesus, their Spouse; to the Father and the Paraclete be equal and eternal glory. Amen


The story of St. Cecilia, like that of many of the saints venerated in the fourth and fifth centuries, is by itself a romance, a story. According to church history, Cecilia was a maiden of noble birth. At an early age, she dedicated her life to God with a vow of chastity. She, however, was betrothed and married to a young noble named Valerian. On her wedding day, she prayed to the Lord and asked Him to protect her virginity. History records, "The day on which the wedding was to be held arrived and while musical instruments were playing she was singing in her heart to God alone saying: Make my heart and my body pure that I may not be confounded" (McKinnon 46).

Many historians believe that this text lead to the eventual naming of Cecilia as the patroness of music. In the original Latin, the term for musical instruments is "cantantibus organis," and in later texts it was translated that she was playing an organ instead of listening to music as she prayed (McKinnon 46). St. Cecilia's prayers were answered, and Valerian was willing to take her as his wife without forcing her to break her vow. Not only did he accept her vow of chastity, he and his brother Tiburtius were both converted to Christianity and were baptized by Pope Urban I (Catholic On-line Encyclopedia).

At this time, Christianity was still illegal in Rome. Both Valerian and his brother Tiburtius were soon discovered as professed Christians and were martyred. Cecilia was discovered soon after and met a similar fate. It required two attempts, however, before the death of Cecilia was successful. She was first locked in a bath in her own home to be suffocated by the steam. When she emerged from the bath unharmed, she was then beheaded. The stroke of the axe failed to sever her head from her body, however, and she lived for three days. During this time, she saw to the disbursment of her assets to help the poor, and she donated her home to the ecclesiastical authorities to be used as a church. In the fifth century, this church was considered to be the one at Trastevere which bears her name. Cecilia is believed to be buried at the Catacomb of Callistus.

St. Cecilia is present in both art and literature from the late fifth century on. Pilgrim's flocked to see her relics, and she became the subject of several mosaics, frescoes, and miniatures (McKinnon 46). She was in no sense, however, associated with music during her earliest depictions in art or literature. In fact, the seventh century English scholar Aldhelm hightens the differences between the secular music and the virtuous Cecilia. He describes it as "the deadly music of the Sirens impelling the innocent [St. Cecilia] to the peril of their lives" (McKinnon 46). In the Middle Ages during the apex of the pilgrimage, Chaucer (1343-1400) also makes direct reference to the virgin saint. He devotes the Second Nun's Priest Tale to her, but in this literary work as well she is not associated with music. In fact, Chaucer presents an almost word-for-word translation of the Acts of St. Cecilia in the tale:

And while the organs maden melodie
To God alone in hart thus sang she:
'O Lord, my soule and eek my body gye
Unwemmed, lest confounded be.' (McKinnon 46)

It is not until late in the fifteenth century that Cecilia quite suddenly began to be associated with music. She was declared the patron saint of church music by several musicians' guilds and began being regularly portrayed playing the organ.

Along with St. Catherine, St. Cecilia is considered one of the muses of poetic art. This fact helps to explain why she so often appears in art. Another reason St. Cecilia appears widely in art is because artists like to work with the "rapt expression" associated with St. Cecilia's facial expressions (Jameson 345). St. Cecilia, however, is confined mainly to Western art. The oldest known art work of St. Cecilia is a rude drawing on the wall of a catacomb at San Lorenzo, which dates from 817 AD (Jameson 349). Another well-known piece of art with Cecilia as the subject is the sculpture "St. Cecilia Lying Dead." It was commissioned by Cardinal Sfondrati to commemorate the attitude in which she was found (Jameson 347). Sir Charles Bell describes the statue:

The body lies on its side, the limbs a little drawn up; the hands are delicate and fine,--they are not locked, but crossed at the wrist: the arms are stretched out. The drapery is beautifully modelled, and modestly covers the limbs. The head is enveloped in linen, but the general form is seen... (Jameson 347).

In the late fifteenth century, St. Cecilia begins to be associated with music. Artists begin to portray her with an organ or singing. Artists also like to paint her with cherubem at this point. Before her association with music, St. Cecilia was portrayed with a palm in one hand and the gospel often in the other. She was also often depicted wearing either the martyr's crown or a crown of roses (Jameson 351). The most celebrated modern representation of the virgin saint is the painting by Raphael (see right). It was commissioned as the alter piece for her chapel in the church of San Giovanni-in-Monte near Bologne (Jameson 350-51). In the picture

"she stands in the centre, in a rich robe of golden tint, and her hair confined by a band of jewels. In her hand is a small organ,--but seems about to drop it as she looks up, listening with ecstatic expression to a group of angels, who are singing above. Scattered and broken at her feet lie the instruments of secular music... To the right of St. Cecilia stands St. Paul... to the left, in front, the Magdalene,... and behind her St. Augustine" (Jameson 351).

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