Wednesday, April 8, 2020

POWERFUL MEANS


 “For myself, I know of no better way of establishing the kingdom of God, Eternal Wisdom, than to unite vocal and mental prayer by saying the holy Rosary and meditating on its fifteen mysteries.” 

 Saint Louis Grignion de Montfort 

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Monday, April 6, 2020

IN THESE DAYS OF EPIDEMIC


In these days of epidemic, let us remember that Saint Thérèse of Lisieux lived through an influenza epidemic in her convent that ended the lives of several religious. In the monastery, she was one of the youngest, and had to take care of the sick as best she could. They all lived through it with a spirit of faith. Those who died did so with peace and joy, eager to go meet the Lord. Those who survived, kept in mind the words of Saint John of the Cross: “What does it profit you to give God one thing if He asks of you another?” And they understood that God asked them to live in peace the unexpected circumstances, changing their schedules, adapting to the situation, keeping faith and hope at all times. This is how she describes it:

"The flu spread in the community, and only two other sisters and I were spared of the disease. I will never be able to express everything I saw, and what life and everything that is temporary seemed to me…

The day I turned 19, we celebrated it with a death, which was soon followed by two others.

At that time, I was alone in the sacristy, because the other religious was seriously ill. I had to prepare the burials, open the choir for mass, etc. God gave me many graces of strength in those moments. Now I wonder how I could do everything I did without feeling fear. Death reigned everywhere. The sickest were cared for by those who barely stood up. As soon as a sister breathed her last breath, she had to be left alone.

One morning, when I woke up, I had the feeling that Sister Magdalene had died. The cloister was dark and no one came out of her cell. At last, I made up my mind to enter Sister Magdalene's cell, which had the door open. And I saw her, dressed and lying on her mattress. I did not feel the slightest fear. Seeing that she did not have a candle, I went to get one, and also a wreath of roses.

The night the Mother Superior died, I was alone with the nurse. It is impossible to imagine the sad state of the community in those days. Only those who survived can get an idea.

But in the midst of that abandonment, I felt that God was watching over us. The dying passed away effortlessly into a better life, and immediately after dying, an expression of joy and peace spread over their faces, as if they were sleeping a sweet dream. And so it was in reality, for when the appearance of this world has passed, they will awaken to eternally enjoy the delights reserved for the chosen ones... "

What a different attitude with that of today's world, where many claim to "believe" in Our Lord and His promise of eternal life, but at the same time we see an insane dread at even the possibility of getting sick with coronavirus, let alone the possibility of dying.

Let us learn from the heroes of the faith, the Saints, to accept God's provident plan for our lives, certain that "all things work together for good to those who love God” (Romans 8:28).

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Saturday, April 4, 2020

PRAYER IN TIMES OF EPIDEMICS


(Extract from the Roman Ritual, Titulus IX, Caput X)

V/. Deal not with us, Lord, according to our sins.
R/. And take not vengeance on us because of our misdeeds.

V/. Remember not, O Lord, our sins of old.
R/. Hasten to us with thy compassion, for we are become exceeding poor.

V/. St. Sebastian, pray for us.
R/. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray.

Vouchsafe to hear us, O God, our only salvation! And through the intercession of the glorious and blessed Mary, Mother of God and ever Virgin, of thy blessed martyr, Sebastian and of all the saints, deliver thy people from the terrors of thy wrath, and restore their confidence by the outpouring of thy compassion. Be moved to pity, O Lord, at our earnest entreaties, and heal the illnesses of body and soul; so that experiencing thy forgiveness we may ever rejoice in thy blessing.

We beseech thee, O Lord, grant us a hearing as we devoutly raise our petitions to thee, and graciously turn away the epidemic of plague which afflicts us; so that mortal hearts may recognize that these scourges proceed from thine indignation and cease only when thou art moved to mercy. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen.

R/. Amen.

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Wednesday, April 1, 2020

GOD


What is God?

- Say, what is God, oh beautiful lights?
Order! - The stars answered me.

- Say, what is God, oh beautiful flowers?
- Beauty! - The roses answered me.

- Say, what is God, oh Blessed Mother. And, looking at the Crucifix, she said:
- Love is God. A love purer than the light of day.

Fr. Leonardo Castellani

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Sunday, March 29, 2020

DON’T BE FEARFUL O MARY by Saint Bernard


You have heard, O Virgin, the announcement of the great mystery. You have heard that you are to conceive and bring forth a Son, and that it will not be through the power of man, but by the virtue of the Holy Ghost. The angel awaits your reply, for it is time that he should return to God, Who sent him. We, too,are waiting, O Lady, for a word of mercy—we, who are groaning under the sentence of condemnation. See, the price of our salvation is offered to you; if you consent, we shall at once be delivered. By the Eternal Word of God we were all created, and behold we die. By your short answer we shall be refreshed and recalled to life.

Hasten, then, O Lady, to give your answer; hasten to speak the word so longed for by all on earth, in limbo, and in heaven. Yea, the King and Lord of all things, Who has greatly desired your beauty, desires as eagerly your word of consent, by which He has purposed to save the world. He whom you have pleased by your silence will now be more gratified by your reply. Hark! He calls to you from heaven: “O most beautiful among women, give me to hear your voice.” If you let Him hear your voice, He will enable you to see our salvation. And is not this what you have sought for, what you have prayed for night and day with sighs and tears?

Open, O Blessed Virgin, your heart to faith, your lips to compliance, your bosom to your Creator. Behold, the desired of all nations stands at the gate and knocks. Oh, suppose He were to pass by while you delay! How would you begin again with sorrow to seek Him whom your soul loveth! Arise—run—open! Arise by faith, run by devotion, open by acceptance.

St Bernard on the Annunciation and the Blessed Virgin's Consent.

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Friday, March 27, 2020

THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION


The Immaculate Conception the one Who is the Glory of her people, the one who gives her people Victory. Who is she that comes forth as the moring rising, fair as the moon, bright as the sun, terrible as an army set in battle array?

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Sunday, March 22, 2020

IN THIS PANDEMIC, AND ALWAYS, WE SHOULD MAKE MANY SPIRITUAL COMMUNIONS


A Spiritual Communion is a pious desire to receive the Holy Eucharist, when for some reason it is not possible to receive Our Lord sacramentally. It has been practiced by all the saints with great spiritual profit.

Warnings

1) Spiritual Communion may be repeated several times a day. It can be made while we are at Church or elsewhere, at any time of day or night, before or after meals.

2) All those who do not receive Communion sacramentally should at least make a Spiritual Communion, when attending Mass. The better time to make a Spiritual Communion is, obviously, when the priest is taking Communion.

3) Those who are in the state of mortal sin must make an act of contrition beforehand, if they wish to receive the fruits of Spiritual Communion. Otherwise, they would not benefit from it at all, and it would be an irreverence, although not a sacrilege, according to Fr. Antonio Royo Marín, OP, “Moral Theology for Lay People”.

-oOo-

Regarding Spiritual Communion, the Catechism of the Council of Trent, known as Roman Catechism, because it is a compendium of the Roman doctrine, states the following: “It is necessary that the pastors of souls teach that there is not only one way of receiving the admirable fruits of the Sacrament of Eucharist, but two: Sacramental Communion and Spiritual Communion.” The latter is not very well known, and it is practiced by very few people, nonetheless it is an incomparable and special fountain of graces.

Countless souls have attained a high degree of perfection through it.
Saint John Mary Vianney, used to say: "A spiritual communion acts on the soul as a breath of wind does on a fire which is about to burn out. Whenever you feel your love of God growing cold, quickly make a spiritual communion."

The Holy Council of Trent immensely praises Spiritual Communion, and urges the faithful to practice this devotion. Our Lord said to His servant, Sister Paula Maresca, founder of the Monastery of Saint Catherine of Siena, in Napoles, how much Spiritual Communion pleases Him, and the great number of graces that are granted to us through this devotion, by showing her two precious vessels, one made out of gold and the other one made out of silver; then He said to her that He kept His Sacramental Communions in the gold vessel, and the Spiritual Communions in the silver one.

Jesus would like to come every day to our hearts through Sacramental Communion, however this is still not enough for Him: He would like to unite with us continually. This desire of the Divine Savior is fulfilled through Spiritual Communion. Our Lord said to Saint Matilda: “Every time your heart desires Me, you draw Me to you. A desire or a longing is enough to make Me yours.” He also said to Saint Margaret of Alacoque: “My daughter, your desire has pierced My Heart so deeply that if I had not already instituted this Sacrament, I would do so now to become your food.” He also asked to Saint Margaret of Cortona to remind the words of Saint Augustine to a religious: “Believe and you have eaten already”; that is, make an act of Faith and desire towards the Eucharist, and you will be fed by this divine food. During the celebration of a Mass, He said to Blessed Ida of Louvain, who had not been able to receive Him sacramentally: “Call me and I shall come to you!”, the saint exclaimed: “Come, O Jesus!” and she immediately felt filled with happiness as if she had really received Communion. Lastly, after having made a Spiritual Communion, Saint Catherine of Siena heard that Jesus said to her: “In such manner and place as it may please Me I can, want and know how to satisfy the holy ardors of a soul that desires Me.”

This great desire of Jesus to unite with us is infinite and omnipotent: it has no other barrier than our liberty. Jesus has multiplied the miracles to give Himself to us in the Eucharist. Is he not capable of making another miracle? Is he not His own Lord and owner of all His graces and Divinity? If he comes down from Heaven to the Host, between the hands of the priest, would He not come down to our hearts, if we call Him with the ardor of our desire?
The first effect of Spiritual Communion is that of increasing our union with the Humanity and Divinity of the Incarnated Word. This is its main effect, its essential fruit; all the other graces that we receive through this devotion stem from it. Here is a brief summary of the several graces that are granted to us through Spiritual Communion:

Our fervor is rekindled. "A spiritual communion acts on the soul as a breath of wind does on a fire which is about to burn out. Whenever you feel your love of God growing cold, quickly make a spiritual communion”, said Saint John Mary Vianney. Amidst the many trials on our earthly pilgrimage, sadness continuously takes hold of us, and our hearts fill with darkness. Spiritual Communion dispels the gloom, like the morning’s sun; it brings back joy to the heart and peace to the soul.

Spiritual Communion also facilitates and favors interior retirement. It is the most effective means to fight against dissipation, fickleness and digressions of the mind and fantasy. It helps us to keep our sight fixed on God, to live in a sweet and constant intimacy with Him, and in a continuous union of hearts.

Spiritual Communion detaches us from everything that is purely sensitive and earthly; it helps us to despise all vanities and pleasures of the world, which last so little. “It is the bread of the heart,” said Saint Augustine, “The healing of the heart.” It also helps us to detach our hearts from everything that is unclean and faulty; and it transforms them and closely unites them to the Heart of Jesus.

It is also greatly effective for removing venial sins and attaining from God forgiveness of punishment for the sins committed. Spiritual Communion will also give an amazing glory to all the souls that practiced well this devotion, and they will enjoy special joys, sweeter and more delicious, that other souls will never know. One day, Our Lord said to Saint Gertrude that each and every time we devotedly look at the Host, our place in Heaven is raised, and the more we increase these amorous looks and desire for the Eucharist, the more joys we will enjoy in Heaven.

It pushes us towards Sacramental Communion by increasing each day our desire to receive Jesus, it prevents us from willfully ceasing to receive Him sacramentally, and it helps us preparing to better receive Sacramental Communion and to get more fruits out of it.

We can also offer up Spiritual Communions for the intentions of others, whether alive or dead. Saint Margaret of Alacoque highly recommended Spiritual Communion as a suffrage for the souls in purgatory. “You can greatly relieve those poor souls by offering up as much Spiritual Communions as you can to repair the misuse they made of Sacramental Communions.”

Spiritual Communion can be made after prayer, meditation, spiritual reading, before and after praying the Rosary, and at night, before going to sleep. It can be made as many times as one wishes to. Time is not important, but ardor and vehemence of desire, hunger and thirst of the soul, the impulse of the heart!

All saints are unanimous in praising the wonders of Spiritual Communion. Some go as far as saying that “Many times, through this means, God fills us with the same graces we receive with Sacramental Communion”, as Blessed Mary of the Cross used to said; and Saint Gertrude, together with Father Rodríguez, agree that “sometimes He grants even greater graces, because although Sacramental Communion is in itself of greater ffectiveness, the fervor of desire can make up for the difference.”

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Friday, March 20, 2020

SOME PEOPLE ARE TERRIFIED OF THE CORONAVIRUS, BUT THEY DON’T ATTEMPT TO LIVE ALWAYS IN THE STATE OF GRACE TO BE SAVED


LET US GO TO CONFESSION! LET’S MAKE IT A HABIT TO MAKE DAILY ACTS OF CONTRITION! OR DO WE PREFER TO RISK ETERNITY?

“Whoever worries much about their body but little about their soul, end up falling into the arms of the devil”.

Saint John Bosco

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Thursday, March 19, 2020

WHAT A CATHOLIC PRIEST SHOULD WARN THE FAITHFUL


“Faith teaches that the pains of Hell are eternal, and it also warns us that one single mortal sin suffices to condemn a soul forever because of the infinite malice by which it offends an infinite God. With these most positive principles in mind, how can I remain indifferent when I see the ease with which sins are committed, sins that occur as frequently as one takes a glass of water, sins and offenses that are perpetrated out of levity or diversion? How can I rest when so many are to be seen living continually in mortal sin?”

If you were to see a blind man about to fall into a pit or over a precipice, would you not warn him? Behold, I do the same, and do it I must for this is my duty… You may tell me that sinners will insult me, that I should leave them alone… Ah no, I can’t abandon them. They are my dear brothers.

I simply cannot understand how other priests who believe the same truths that I do, and as we all should, do not preach and exhort people to save themselves from falling into hell.

It is still a source of wonder to me how the laity – those men and women blessed with the Faith – do not give warning to those who need it. If a house were to catch fire in the middle of the night, and if the inhabitants of the same house and the other townsfolk were asleep and did not see the danger, would not the one who first noticed it shout and run along the streets, exclaiming: “Fire! Fire! In that house over there!” Then why should there not be a warning of eternal fire to waken those who are drifting in the sleep of sin in such a way that when they open their eyes they will find themselves burning in the eternal flames of Hell?".

Saint Anthony Mary Claret

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Saturday, March 14, 2020

LET US KEEP OUR CATHOLIC FAITH WHOLE AND UNDEFILED


 "Whoever wills to be saved, before all things it is necessary that he holds the Catholic faith. Unless a person keeps this faith whole and undefiled, without doubt he shall perish eternally." 

 Pope Eugene IV 

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Wednesday, March 11, 2020

PRAYER TO THE HOLY GHOST


 Come, Holy Ghost, fill the hearts of Your faithful, and kindle in them the fire of Your love. Send forth Your Spirit, and they shall be created, and You shall renew the face of the earth. O God, who has taught the hearts of the faithful by the light of Your Holy Spirit; grant us, in the same Spirit, to know what is right, and ever to rejoice in His consolation, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

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Monday, March 9, 2020

BISHOP SCHNEIDER: THE BAN ON COMMUNION IN THE MOUTH… CONSTITUTES AN ABUSE OF AUTHORITY. RELATED TO CORONAVIRUS


Editor’s note: The following article was first published at Rorate Caeli, and is reprinted with Bishop Schneider’s permission.

February 28, 2020 (Rorate Caeli) – Nobody can force us to receive the Body of Christ in a way that constitutes a risk of the loss of the fragments, and a decrease in reverence, as is the way of receiving Communion in the hand…

In these cases, it is better to make a Spiritual Communion, which fills the soul with special graces. In times of persecution, many Catholics were unable to receive Holy Communion in a sacramental way for long periods of time, but they made a Spiritual Communion with much spiritual benefit.

Communion in the hand is no more hygienic than Communion in the mouth. Indeed, it can be dangerous for contagion. From a hygienic point of view, the hand carries a huge amount of bacteria. Many pathogens are transmitted through the hands. Whether by shaking other people's hands or frequently touching objects, such as door handles or handrails and grab bars in public transport, germs can quickly pass from hand to hand; and with these unhygienic hands and fingers people then touch often their nose and mouth.

Also, germs can sometimes survive on the surface of the touched objects for days. According to a 2006 study, published in the journal "BMC Infectious Diseases", influenza viruses and similar viruses can persist on inanimate surfaces, such as e.g. door handles or handrails and handles in transport and public buildings for a few days.

Many people who come to church and then receive Holy Communion in their hands have first touched door handles or handrails and grab bars in public transport or other buildings. Thus, viruses are imprinted on the palm and fingers of their hands. And then during Holy Mass with these hands and fingers they are sometimes touching their nose or mouth. With these hands and fingers they touch the consecrated host, thus impressing the virus also on the host, thus transporting the viruses through the host into their mouth.

Communion in the mouth is certainly less dangerous and more hygienic compared to Communion in the hand. In fact, the palm and the fingers of the hand, without intense washing, undeniably contain an accumulation of viruses. The ban on Communion in the mouth is unfounded compared to the great health risks of Communion in the hand in the time of a pandemic. Such a ban constitutes an abuse of authority. Furthermore it seems, that some Church authorities are using the situation of an epidemic as a pretext. It seems also that some of them have a kind of cynical joy to spread more and more the process of trivialization and de-sacralization of the Most Holy and Divine Body of Christ in the Eucharistic sacrament, exposing the Body of the Lord himself to the real dangers of irreverence (loss of fragments) and sacrileges (theft of consecrated hosts). Then there is also the fact that during the Church's 2,000-year history there were no proven cases of contagion due to the reception of Holy Communion. In the Byzantine Church the priest gives Communion to the faithful even with a spoon, the same spoon for everyone. And then, the priest or deacon drinks the wine and water with which he purified the spoon, which was sometimes even touched with the tongue of a faithful during the reception of Holy Communion. Many faithful of the Eastern churches are scandalized, when they see the lack of faith of bishops and priests of the Latin Rite, as they introduce the ban on receiving Communion in the mouth, a ban made ultimately for lack of faith in the sacred and Divine character of the Body and Blood of the Eucharistic Christ.

Then there is also the fact that during the Church's 2,000-year history there were no proven cases of contagion due to the reception of Holy Communion.

In the Byzantine Church the priest gives Communion to the faithful even with a spoon, the same spoon for everyone. And then, the priest or deacon drinks the wine and water with which he purified the spoon, which was sometimes even touched with the tongue of a faithful during the reception of Holy Communion. Many faithful of the Eastern churches are scandalized, when they see the lack of faith of bishops and priests of the Latin Rite, as they introduce the ban on receiving Communion in the mouth, a ban made ultimately for lack of faith in the sacred and Divine character of the Body and Blood of the Eucharistic Christ.

The following prayer for making a Spiritual Communion is recommended:
At Thy feet, O my Jesus, I prostrate myself, and I offer Thee the repentance of my contrite heart, which is humbled in its nothingness and in Thy holy presence. I adore Thee in the Sacrament of Thy love, the ineffable Eucharist. I desire to receive Thee into the poor dwelling that my heart offers Thee. While waiting for the happiness of sacramental Communion, I wish to possess Thee in spirit. Come to me, O my Jesus, since I, for my part, am coming to Thee! The love embrace my whole being in life and in death. I believe in Thee, I hope in Thee, I love Thee. Amen

+ Athanasius Schneider, Auxiliary Bishop of the archdiocese of St. Mary in Astana

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Friday, March 6, 2020

WE MUST NOT SILENCE THE TRUTH


“But, when necessity compels, not those only who are invested with power of rule are bound to safeguard the integrity of faith, but, as St. Thomas maintains: ‘Each one is under obligation to show forth his faith, either to instruct and encourage others of the faithful, or to repel the attacks of unbelievers.’ To recoil before an enemy, or to keep silence when from all sides such clamors are raised against truth, is the part of a man either devoid of character or who entertains doubt as to the truth of what he professes to believe. In both cases such mode of behaving is base and is insulting to God, and both are incompatible with the salvation of mankind.”

Pope Leo XIII, Sapientiae christianae. January, 1890.

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Tuesday, March 3, 2020

THE DEFINITION OF DOGMS IS PERPETUAL


 “For the doctrine of faith that God has revealed has not been proposed like a philosophical system to be perfected by human ingenuity; rather, it has been committed to the spouse of Christ as a divine trust to be faithfully kept and infallibly declared. Hence also that meaning of the sacred dogmas is perpetually to be retained which Our Holy Mother Church has once declared, and there must never be a deviation from that meaning on the specious ground and title of a more profound understanding.”

 (D, 1800) (VATICAN COUNCIL I).

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Sunday, March 1, 2020

THE OBSERVANCE OF LENT


 “The observance of Lent is the very badge of the Christian warfare. By it we prove ourselves not to be enemies of the cross of Christ. By it we avert the scourges of divine justice. By it we gain strength against the princes of darkness, for it shields us with heavenly help. Should mankind grow remiss in their observance of Lent, it would be a detriment to God’s glory, a disgrace to the Catholic religion, and a danger to Christian souls. Neither can it be doubted that such negligence would become the source of misery to the world, of public calamity, and of private woe.” (Benedict XIV, Constitution Non ambigimus of 10 June 1745).

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Friday, February 28, 2020

CONFESSION


Confession is more powerful than an exorcism. One is a sacrament and the other is a blessing. One confession is worth 100 exorcisms.

The devil wants to destroy the soul, and the soul is healed by confession. If people want to decrease the work of Satan, they should increase the use of confession.

Once the confessional line gets thin, the activity of Satan increases. To decrease the work of Satan, increase the use of confession.

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Wednesday, February 26, 2020

WHEN DEATH COMES


It is most useful for our salvation to say often to ourselves: I must one day die! The Church every year on Ash Wednesday brings this remembrance to the faithful. This certainty of death is brought to our recollection many times in the year; sometimes by the burial grounds which we pass upon the road, sometimes by the graves which we behold in churches, sometimes by the dead who are carried to burial.

The most precious furniture that was carried by the anchorites to their caves was a cross and a skull; the cross to remind them of the great love of Jesus Christ for us, and the skull to remind them of the day of their own death. And so they persevered in penitential works till the end of their days; and thus dying in poverty in the desert, they died more contented than if they had died as kings in their palaces.

"The end is at hand! The end is at hand! In this life one man lives a longer, another a shorter time; but for everyone sooner or later, the end comes; and when that end comes, nothing will comfort us at death but the thought that we have loved Jesus Christ, and have endured with patience the labors of this life for love of Him.

Then, not the riches we have gained, nor the honors we have obtained, nor the pleasures we have enjoyed, will console us. All the greatness of the world cannot comfort a dying man; it rather adds to his pains; and the more he has gained of it, the more does he suffer.

It was said by Sister Margaret of St. Anne, a very holy Discalced Carmelite, and daughter of the Emperor Rudolph II: "What profit is a kingdom at the hour of death?". Oh, how many worldly persons are there to whom, at the very moment when they are busy in seeking for gain, power, and office, the message of death comes: "Set thy house in order; for thou shalt die, and not live." (Isaias 37:1). Why, O man, hast thou neglected to make thy will till the hour when thou art in sickness? O my God, what pain is suffered by him who is on the point of gaining some lawsuit, or of taking possession of some palace or property, who hears it said by the priest who has come to pray for his soul: Depart, Christian soul, from this world. Depart from this world, and render thy account to Jesus Christ. "But," he cries, "I am not now well prepared." What matters that? Thou must now depart.

O my God, give me light, give me strength to spend the rest of my life in serving and loving Thee. If now I should die, I should not die content; I should die disturbed. What, then, do I wait for? That death should seize me at a moment of the greatest peril to my soul? O Lord, if I have been foolish in the past, I will not be so for the time to come. Now I give myself wholly to Thee; receive me and help me with Thy grace.

In a word, to every one the end comes, and with the end comes that decisive moment on which depends a happy or wretched eternity. Oh, what a moment, on which Eternity depends! Oh, that all would think upon that moment, and the account they must give to their Judge of their whole life! Truly, they would not then devote themselves to amassing riches, nor labor to become great in this perishable world; they would think how to become Saints, and to be great in that life which never ends. If, then, we have Faith, let us believe that there is a Death, a Judgment, an Eternity, and labour for the rest of our life to live only for God. And, therefore, let us take care to live as pilgrims on this earth, remembering that we must speedily leave it. Let us live ever with death before our eyes; and, in all the affairs of life, let us take care to act precisely as we should act at the point of death.

All things upon earth either leave us or we leave them. Let us hear Jesus Christ, Who says: "Lay up for yourselves treasures in Heaven, where neither the rust nor moth doth consume." (Matthew 6:20). Let us despise the treasures of earth, which cannot content us, and speedily end; and let us gain those heavenly treasures which will make us happy and will never end.

Miserable I am, O Lord, in that I have so often, for the sake of the goods of this life, turned my back upon Thee Who art the Infinite Good! I see my folly in having sought for a great name, and for making my fortune in the world. I see what my true happiness is: it is henceforth to love Thee, and in everything to fulfill Thy Will. O my Jesus, take from me the desire of gain; make me love neglect and a humble life. Give me strength to deny myself in everything that displeases Thee. Make me embrace, with a calm mind, infirmities, persecutions, desolations, and all the crosses that Thou mayst send me. Oh, that I could die for the love of Thee, abandoned by all, as Thou didst die for me!

Holy Virgin, Thy prayers can enable me to find my true happiness, which is earnestly to love Thy Son. Oh, pray for me; in Thee I put my trust.

SAINT ALPHONSUS MARIA DE LIGUORI
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Monday, February 24, 2020

FOLLOW HIS LAW, AND TRUST HIM



 The Blessed Virgin said in Cana: "Do whatever He tells you." Today she tells us the same thing. Trust God and follow his commandments and teachings. 

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Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Saint Bernadette



 Let us remember Saint Bernardette Soubirous (1879), the visionary of Our Lady in Lourdes-France, whose body has been preserved incorrupt by Our Lord until His Second Coming, for devotion of the faithful.

 Bernadette Soubirous was born in Lourdes (France) in 1844, being the daughter of extremely poor parents. On the day of her baptism they named her María Bernarda (name she would use later when she became a religious) but everyone called her Bernadette. 

 She was the eldest of several brothers. His parents lived in a damp and poor basement, and her father worked as a garbage man for the hospital. The girl was always very weak in health because of the lack of food, and the unfortunately poor state of the room where she lived. In her first years, she suffered from cholera disease that left her extremely weakened. Because of the terribly cold weather in winter, in that region, Bernadette also suffered from asthma since she was ten, which when compressing the bronchial tubes produces continuous drowning and shortness of breath.

This disease tormented her all her life. At the end of her existence she also suffered from tuberculosis. In her, the words of Our Lord were fulfilled: "Every branch in me that beareth not fruit, my Father will take away: and every one that beareth fruit, he will purge it (through sufferings), that it may bring forth more fruit” (Jn. 15:2). 

 In Bernadette, the words of Saint Paul were fulfilled: “But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong." 

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Friday, February 14, 2020

IF YOU...

"If you change from inhumanity to alms-giving, you have stretched forth the hand that was withered. If you withdraw from theaters and go to church, you have cure the lame foot. If you draw back your eyes from a harlot... you have opened them when they were blind... These are the greatest miracles."

Saint John Chrysostom


Wednesday, February 12, 2020

THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST: RESURRECTION, THE NEW FILM OF MEL GIBSON 



After the wonderful film "The Passion of the Christ", Mel Gibson’s new film is about the event that changed history and is the foundation of our faith: the Resurrection!

 A film that meticulously describes the anguish felt by the disciples of Christ during the three days from the Crucifixion to the Resurrection. "The Passion of the Christ: Resurrection", is a sequel of "The Passion of the Christ", and it will be screened in cinemas only during Holy Week 2020. 

The previous film also premiered during Holy Week 2004, grossing $611,899,420. For this reason, the director decided to do the same with the new movie.

Some of the same actors that were part of the cast of The Passion of the Christ will appear in the new film, namely: Jim Caviezel (in the role of Jesus), Maia Morgenstern, Christo Jivkov and Francesco De Vito. 

For the first time in the history of cinema, the three days after the death of Christ will be portrayed. The new episode begins where the first one ended, with the burial of Christ, thus narrating moment by moment the three days after Christ's death. 

Among the other episodes narrated are the intrigues of Herod's palace and Resurrection Sunday in Jerusalem. In addition, the director has not forgotten to include important issues such as: the power, greed and ambition of some of the characters involved in the crucifixion like Pontius Pilate, Caiphas and Judas. 

Source: messainlatino
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Sunday, February 9, 2020

ENEMIES OF CIVILIZATION AND FAMILY 



"The enemies of life know that to destroy Christian civilization, they must first destroy the family at its weakest point – the child. And among the weakest, they must choose the least protected of all – the child who has never been seen; the child who is not yet known or loved in the usual meaning of the word; who has not yet seen the light of day; who cannot even cry out in distress."

 Dr. Jerome Lejeune French Genetic Scientist. He discovered, among other things, that Down syndrome is due to the presence of an extra chromosome.
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Friday, February 7, 2020

DEVOTION TO MARY WITH A DETERMINATION TO AMEND OUR LIVES IS A SIGN OF SALVATION



"If all sinners had recourse to Mary, with a determination to amend their lives, who shuld ever be lost? Only they that have not recourse to Mary are lost." 

 Saint Alphonsus Maria de Liguori 

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Monday, February 3, 2020

GO TO MARY 


"Preach to all, young and old alike, that they must remember they are children of Mary Help of Christians. Tell them she has gathered them here to take them away from the dangers of the world, so that they may love one another as brothers and give glory to God and to her by their good behaviour. Remind them that with her help that barrier of mistrust will fall which has been raised by the devil, who knows how to use it to ruin certain souls." 

 Saint John Bosco 

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Friday, January 31, 2020

FAKE FRIENDSHIP


“Do not consider as a friend the one who always praises you and does not have the courage to tell you your shortcomings.” 

 Saint John Bosco 

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Monday, January 27, 2020

BE CAREFUL NOT TO LET SLIP FROM OUR HEARTS THE WORD OF GOD 


I ask this question of you, brethren and sistren, answer me, Whether you think greater - the word of God or the body of Christ? If you will answer the truth, verily you ought to say thus, that the word of God is no less than the body of Christ. And therefore with what carefulness we take heed, when the body of Christ is ministered unto us, that no part thereof fall out of our hands on the earth, with as great carefulness let us take heed, that the word of God which is ministered unto us, when we think or speak of vain matters, perish not out of our hearts. For he that heareth the word of God negligently, shall be guilty of no less fault, than he that suffereth the body of Christ to fall upon the ground through his negligence." 

 Saint Augustine of Hipona

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Saturday, January 25, 2020

LIES DON’T BECOME TRUTH, EVEN IF THEY’VE BECOME ACCEPTABLE TO THE MAJORITY


We must never forget that lies are always such, no matter how much everyone believes in them, and truths are always such, even if nobody believes in them. Abortion will always be the murder of an innocent human being, and that is the truth, even if few accept it.

We must not do or stop doing something according to what the majority does. Everything that is good and fair must be done, even if only a minority does it, and what is bad and sinful must be rejected, regardless of how much it is accepted by the majority.

Therefore, let us be faithful to Jesus Christ, for only He is the Way, the Truth and the Life (and let us not forget that He was rejected by the majority who asked for His crucifixion).

Fr. Tomas A. Beroch
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Friday, January 17, 2020

LET US MAKE THE CRUCIFIX A BANNER OF LIFE AND ACTION


“Islam cannot be fought in the name of the Enlightment and even less so by relativism. The only thing that can oppose it, is the natural and Divine law, denied radically by both relativism and Islam.  For this reason, we are raising the Crucifix which secularism and Islamism reject and we are making of it a banner of life and action. St. Paul said ‘We preach Christ Crucified, unto the Jews indeed a stumbling-block and unto the Gentiles foolishness’ (I Cor. 1, v.23).  We would like to repeat: ‘We preach Christ Crucified, a stumbling-block to the Muslims and foolishness to the Secularists’.”

Roberto de Mattei

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Tuesday, January 14, 2020

EMBRACE OUR CROSS


To embrace my cross, embracing Yours. What a mystery of love the cross contains! Let us embrace our crosses as Christ loved His. Only for Love and in Love, can we take up our crosses…

Lord Jesus, give us a wise heart, that knows how to love the Cross in your Cross.

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Sunday, January 12, 2020

THE DOCTRINE OF THE CHURCH DOES NOT NEED TO ADAPT TO THE SPIRIT OF THE AGE


The underlying principle of these new opinions is that, in order to more easily attract those who differ from her, the Church should shape her teachings more in accord with the spirit of the age and relax some of her ancient severity and make some concessions to new opinions. Many think that these concessions should be made not only in regard to ways of living, but even in regard to doctrines which belong to the deposit of the faith. They contend that it would be opportune, in order to gain those who differ from us, to omit certain points of her teaching which are of lesser importance, and to tone down the meaning which the Church has always attached to them. (…) Such a policy would tend rather to separate Catholics from the Church than to bring in those who differ. There is nothing closer to our heart than to have those who are separated from the fold of Christ return to it, but in no other way than the way pointed out by Christ. (…) History proves clearly that the Apostolic See, to which has been entrusted the mission not only of teaching but of governing the whole Church, has continued "in one and the same doctrine, one and the same sense, and one and the same judgment." – (Const. de fide, Chapter IV). (…) In this matter the Church must be the judge, not private men who are often deceived by the appearance of right.

(Leo XIII. Letter Testem Benevolentiae al Card. James Gibbons, January, 22, 1899).

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Friday, January 10, 2020

ABOUT SHEPHERDS WHOSE FUNDAMENTAL CONCERN ARE MATERIAL THINGS


“And so too are all they seriously mistaken who, occupying themselves with the welfare of the people, and especially upholding the cause of the lower classes, seek to promote above all else the material well-being of the body and of life, but are utterly silent about their spiritual welfare and the very serious duties which their profession as Christians enjoins upon them. They are not ashamed to conceal sometimes, as though with a veil, certain fundamental maxims of the Gospel, for fear lest otherwise the people refuse to hear and follow them.”

Iucunda Sane

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Tuesday, January 7, 2020

PRAYER TO OUR LADY ASKING FOR THE CONVERSION OF A SINNER


O Mary, Immaculate Conception, perfect in all virtues, the One who overcomes temptation and sin, I entrust to you the well-being, salvation and purification of the soul of... (Name of the person). Deign to heal that soul of all its wounds, of all traces of sin and especially of what induces it to sin, so that through a true contrition, purpose of amendment and a good confession (name of the person) can obtain the grace of God, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen. (Make the sign of the Cross and give thanks to Our Lady).
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Sunday, January 5, 2020

Epiphany


For they saw a Man, and acknowledged our God.

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Friday, January 3, 2020

A GENUINE DEVOTION TO OUR LADY HELPS OVERCOME A SINFUL LIFE


St. Alphonsus tells a story that illustrates how even a small daily habit of devotion to Mary, faithfully practiced, bears wonderful and lasting fruit.

An event recorded by Fr. Paul Segneri, in the work entitled Christian Instructed, is rightly well known. A young man of immoral habits, and laden with sins, went to Confession to Fr. Nicholas Zucchi in Rome. 

The confessor received him with charity. Filled with compassion for the young man’s unfortunate state, the priest assured him that devotion to our Blessed Lady could deliver him from the accursed vice to which he was addicted. So he gave him as his penance the instruction to say a Hail Mary to the Blessed Virgin every morning and evening, when getting up and when going to bed, until his next Confession. At the same time, he was to offer her his eyes, his hands, and his whole body, begging her to preserve them as something belonging to herself. He was also to kiss the ground three times.

The young man performed the penance, but at first there was only a slight change in his habits. Fr. Zucchi, however, continued to impress on him to maintain the new devotional practice, urging him never to abandon it. At the same time, he encouraged him to trust in the assistance of Mary.

In the meantime, the penitent left Rome with other companions, and for the next few years travelled in various parts of the world. When he returned, he once again sought out his confessor. Fr. Zucchi, to his great joy and admiration, found that the young man was entirely changed, and free from his former evil habits.

“My son,” the priest asked, “how have you obtained from God so wonderful a change?” The young man replied: “Father, our Blessed Lady obtained this grace for me through that little devotion that you taught me.” 

Father Zucchi, with the permission of the penitent, mentioned the fact from the pulpit. There was a soldier present who was actually in the habit of sins of impurity; he began to say every day the three "Hail Marys," and in a short time, with the aid that the divine Mother obtained for him, he soon renounced the evil habit. Through a false zeal, he went one day to the accomplice of his sins in order to convert her; but when he was on the point of entering her house he was suddenly driven back, and found himself transported to a considerable distance. He then understood that he had been prevented from speaking to the woman by a special grace obtained for him by Mary, for which he thanked her. Had he been placed again in the occasion of sin he would probably have relapsed.

Saint Alphonsus Maria de Liguori, The Glories of Mary.
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