Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Grace upon grace

"Confession heals, confession justifies, confession grants pardon of sin.
All hope consists in confession. In confession there is a chance for mercy.
Believe it firmly. Do not doubt, do not hesitate, never despair of the mercy of God. Hope and have confidence in confession." - St Isidore of Seville
If we confess our sins, He who is upright can be depended upon to forgive sins,
and to cleanse us from every wrong.  – I John 1:9
"Of the gifts of grace which
the soul receives in the Eucharist,
one must be counted among the highest;
the Eucharist does not allow the soul
to remain long in sin
or to persist in it obstinately."
St. Ignatius of Loyola
Spain ~ 1491-1556
Priest, Founder of Society of Jesus (Jesuits)
The Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius - classic - a MUST READ! 
Jesuit motto:  Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam (A.M.D.G.)
"For the greater glory of God"
FEAST DAY - July 31
"Some of us would be surprised if they knew what God
could make of them if, in the decisive moments of their lives, 
they gave ear to the voice of grace!"  - St Ignatius of Loyola

St Ignatius, pray for us!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A chalice to warm the spirit!

You prepare a table before me... my cup overflows. - Psalm 23: 5a,d

"Divine blessings" -  Source of image: Click here: Precious Blood of Jesus

"Today Christ works the first of His signs from heaven
by turning water into wine. But water [mixed with wine]
has still to be changed into the sacrament of His blood,
so that Christ may offer spiritual drink from the chalice
of His body, to fulfill the psalmist's prophecy:
How excellent is my chalice, warming my spirit."

St Peter Chrysologus 
Italy ~ c. 380-450
Adult convert
Archbishop, Doctor of the Church
"Golden -worded"
FEAST DAY - July 30

"Anyone who wishes to frolic with the devil
cannot rejoice with Christ."   ~ St Peter Chrysologus  
St Peter Chrysologus, pray for us!

Saint Peter Chrysologus is the Doctor of Homilies. His words helped to defeat the attack on Christ's humanity. No doctor said so much in his homilies in fewer words. To hear his sermons after nearly 1500 years is a blessing, each and every time.

Peter was a stalwart witness to the faith. He had a short life but it was long and full of accomplishments. He was the archbishop of Ravenna, Italy, as a young priest and he expended his energies neutralizing the last forces of paganism of his day.

Chrysologus means "The Golden-Worded".  His prayer when he spoke (from Sermon 96):
May our God deign to give me the grace of speaking and you the desire of hearing.

To really benefit fruitfully from any conversation or homily, one's heart and mind must be open to receive the communication. Peter was filled with all the gifts and fruits of the Spirit but even his best efforts to impart his wisdom and knowledge would not benefit anyone unless his listeners were truly docile to grace through their hearts and attentive with their eyes and minds, both exteriorly and interiorly. Our souls have eyes and powerful perceptions that are drawn to God's message when we are open, sincere and desire to learn.

Homilies can be like sweet music to the ear and joy to the heart. The homily during the Catholic Mass is a vital part of the Liturgy of the Word. It follows the reading of the gospel and is the explanation and elaboration on the celebration of the Word. This part of the liturgical service, offered immediately before the celebration of the Liturgy of the Eucharist, prepares its members to fully enter into the worship of God. It also prepares us to be empowered and enlighten to fully partake of the holy meal. Each liturgical celebration of the Mass is an extension of the "Last Supper" that the Lord shared with His dear friends. He changed Himself during this meal into precious food that fortifies us and enables us to proceed on our spiritual journey. More importantly, this meal strengthens us and enables us by transforming us into Himself. That's right! Imagine being changed into another Christ? When this happens we'll be able to do and say what Christ would do or say Himself. Is that possible? Believe it! It's Catholic theology. (

Monday, July 29, 2013

Holy echo


The words of Martha, ‘I know that he will rise
again in the resurrection at the last day’ (John 11:24),
echo in our souls as we pray and grieve for our beloved dead…

In what better place could we pray for the dead
than before the Eucharist, where we can
experience Our Blessed Savior Present?” ~ S. Tassone

 St Martha
Sister to Mary and Lazarus,
Friend of Jesus
Patroness of servants, innkeepers,
homemakers and cooks
FEAST DAY - July 29


 In St Martha's footsteps...
Dorothy Day said: "If everyone were holy and handsome, it would be easy to see Christ in everyone. But it was not Christ's way for Himself.
Ask honestly what you would do when a beggar asked at your house for food. Would you give it on an old cracked plate, thinking that was good enough? Do you think that Martha and Mary thought that the old and chipped dish was good enough for their guest? It is not a duty to help Christ -- it is a privilege."
St Martha, pray for us!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

"Put on Christ!"

 Clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ ... - Romans 13:14a
"'Put on Christ':
He is waiting for you
in His flesh in the Eucharist,
the sacrament of His presence
and His sacrifice of love."
Pope Francis
Homily, prayer service, Welcoming Ceremony,
28th World Youth Day, Copacabana Beach
World Youth Day - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Divine Sacristan of Love

 To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His blood...
to Him be glory and power for ever and ever ! Amen. - Rev 1:5b, 6b 

Prayer to Our Lady of the Precious Blood

O Virgin Mary, through the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit, Thou didst give a human nature to Thy Divine Son without which He could not have suffered and redeemed. On His eighth day, Thou didst bring Him to the Temple for His first anxious bloodshedding in anticipation of His Cross.  At Cana, Thou didst send Him to His Hour of Redemption by asking Him to begin His public life by working His first Miracle; at the Cross, Thou didst stand as an active participant of His Redemption and Thou didst hear thyself called to be the mother of men, as, at Bethlehem, Thou wast called in the Visitation to be the Mother of God. When Thy Divine Son was taken down from the Cross and laid in Your Arms as a Paten, though Thou were not a priest, Thou couldst say, as no priest has said, the words of consecration: 'This is My Body; this is My Blood." Thus, the chalice which He drank and the bread which He offered were prepared by you as the Divine Sacristan of Love. Grant that, through the shedding of His Blood, we shed no more blood of our brothers in war. Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sins, but may all of the sins of the world be remitted through the blood of Him Whom Thou wert the Ciborium of the flesh during nine months and His Mother and ours through time and eternity.

Ven. Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

Missionary of Charity Sister receiving the Precious Blood

ORDAINED to the Holy Priesthood of Jesus Christ TODAY
Saturday, July 27, 2013
Oh, day of Love Divine, all loves excelling! 
An Old German saying:
It is worth wearing out a pair of shoes to walk
to receive a priest's First Blessing!
Rev Mr Terry McGowan ~ Diocese of Nashville (Tennesee)
Rev Mr Justin Raines ~ Diocese of Nashville 
Cathedral of the Incarnation ~ 10:00 AM Mass

Let us hold them in prayer and offer thanksgiving for their 'YES'!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Union with Christ, family, friends

How lovely is thy dwelling place, O Lord of hosts. - Psalm 84:1
Sister of the Perpetual Adoration Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament at prayer ~ Sacred Heart Adoration Chapel, St Joseph Cathedral ~ Sioux Falls, South Dakota ~ USA.  ~ Photo courtesy: The Catholic Foundation for Eastern South Dakota

"As medieval Christians came to seek union with Christ in abiding before the reserved Blessed Sacrament, they likewise began to discover in the presence of their God a deeper union with their family and friends, as did Saint Elzear of Sabran, a Third Order Franciscan (1286-1323), who, in a letter to his wife, Saint Delphina, wrote: 

'You desire to hear often of me.  Go often to visit our amiable Lord Jesus Christ in the holy sacrament.  Enter in spirit His Sacred Heart.  You know that to be my constant dwelling.  You will always find me there.'"
From In the Presence of Our Lord
The History, Theology, and Psychology of Eucharistic Devotion
(Chapter 10, Pg 233)
Fr Benedict J Groeschel, CFR and James Monti
Remembering ...
Sts Joachim and Anne
Parents of the Virgin Mary
Patrons of Grandparents
Feast Day - July 26
Sts Joachim and Anne, pray for us!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Ever present, as He said

 Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee
and his brother John.  They were in a boat with their father Zebedee,
preparing their nets.  Jesus called them, and immediately they left
the boat and their father and followed him. - Matthew 4:21, 22
"Christ calling the Apostles James and John" ~ Edward Armitage
"And just as He appeared before the holy Apostles in true flesh, so now He has us see Him in the Sacred Bread. Looking at Him with the eyes of their flesh, they saw only His Flesh, but regarding Him with the eyes of the spirit, they believed that He was God.

In like manner, as we see bread and wine with our bodily eyes, let us see and believe firmly that it is His Most Holy Body and Blood, True and Living.  For in this way our Lord is ever present among those who believe in Him, according to what He said: "Behold, I am with you all days even to the consummation of the world" (Mt. 28, 20).

 St. Francis of Assisi

Saint JAMES (the Greater)
Apostle and Martyr
Son of Zebedee and Salome
Brother of apostle John
Dubbed 'Son of Thunder'
Patron of Spain and laborers
+42 AD 
FEAST DAY - July 25
"Accept the help that the Virgin and the saints offer you.
Promise that you will press forward
on your way to join them."  St Francis de Sales
St James, pray for us!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The center of his life...

 "I will give you shepherds after my own heart..." - Jer 3:15
Michael Otteman -
In 1875 Fr Sharbel was granted permission to live as a hermit nearby his monastery at St. Peter and Paul hermitage. His 23 years of solitary life were lived in a spirit of total abandonment to God.
Sharbel's companions in the hermitage were the Sons of God, as encountered in the Scriptures and in the Eucharist, and the Blessed Mother. The Eucharist became the center of his life. He consumed the Bread of his Life and was consumed by it. Though this hermit did not have a place in the world, the world had a great place in his heart. Through prayer and penance he offered himself as a sacrifice so that the world would return to God. It is in this light that one sees the importance of the following Eucharistic prayer in his life:
"Father of Truth, behold Your Son a sacrifice pleasing to You, accept this offering of Him who died for me..."  On December 16, 1898 while reciting the "Father of Truth" prayer at the Holy Liturgy Sharbel suffered a stroke. He died on Christmas Eve at the age of 70. Through faith this hermit received the Word of God and through love he continued the Ministry of Incarnation.

St Sharbel Makhluf
Lebanon ~ 1828-1898
Priest and Hermit
Perfume of Lebanon
Feast Day - July 24

When Sharbel was canonized (1977), Bsp Francis Zayek, head of the U.S. Diocese of St. Maron,
wrote a pamphlet entitled “A New Star of the East.” Bishop Zayek wrote:

“St. Sharbel is called the second St. Anthony of the Desert, the Perfume of Lebanon, the first Confessor of the East to be raised to the Altars according to the actual procedure of the Catholic Church, the honor of our Aramaic Antiochian Church, and the model of spiritual values and renewal. Sharbel is like a Cedar of Lebanon standing in eternal prayer, on top of a mountain.”
St Sharbel, pray for us!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Remedy and consolation for souls

 It is written in the prophets,
'And they shall all be taught by God.' - John 6:45

"Oh Jesus! Sweetness of hearts, delight of the spirit, by the bitterness of the vinegar and gall which Thou didst taste on the Cross of Love for us, grant us the grace to receive worthily Thy Precious Body and Blood during our life and at the hour of our death, that they may serve as a remedy and consolation for our souls.  Amen.”

St Bridget (Birgitta) of Sweden
Wife, Widow, Religious, Foundress
Mystic and Visionary
Patroness: Sweden.  Co-patroness: Europe
Founded religious order, Brigittines*
*distinctive skull cap over veil
FEAST DAY – July 23

The world would have peace if only men of politics
would follow the Gospels. ~ St. Bridget of Sweden

St Bridget of Sweden, pray for us! 

28th World Youth Day
begins TODAY! 
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
July 23-28, 2013
Explanation of logo

Let us pray, pray, pray!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Perfume of prayer

May my prayer be set before you like incense; may the lifting up
of my hands be like the evening sacrifice.  - Psalm 141:2
"Yes, I am happy, perfectly happy; and do you wish to know where I find true happiness? At the feet of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. …

I would strongly urge that, even as the Magdalene anointed the Lord’s feet with tears and perfumed oil, you too would pour out the perfume of constant prayer and contemplation at the foot of the tabernacle. I should like the Eucharist to become a burning flame for your soul, so that, immersed in that flame, it might emerge burning with love and great-heartedness.

I should like to see this Eucharistic altar, on which Jesus is sacrificed, accept your offering too, so that you may become a victim of love, whose perfume rises to the throne of the Eternal God!"

Fr. Augustine Mary Of The Most Blessed Sacrament
Carmelite priest  (1821 to 1871)

Mary Magdalene washes the feet of Jesus ~ Basilica of the Annunciation -~ Nazareth, Israel
St Mary Magdalene
Disciple of Jesus
Feast Day – July 22

“The story of Mary of Magdala reminds us all of a fundamental truth. A disciple of Christ is one who, in the experience of human weakness, has had the humility to ask for His help, has been healed by Him and has set out following closely after Him, becoming a witness of the power of His merciful love that is stronger than sin and death.” – Pope Benedict XVI

St Mary Magdalene, pray for us! 

One thing I ask of the Lord, this I seek,
to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life. – Psalm 27

Sr Amelia (Hueller) ~ FINAL VOWS
as a Dominican Sister of St Cecilia - Nashville, TN
Cathedral of Incarnation ~ 9:30 AM Mass

Let us pray in thanksgiving and JOY for her "yes"!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Pupils of Adoration

 But by the grace of God I am what I am,
and his grace to me was not without effect.  - I Cor 15:10a

St Joseph Catholic Church ~ Ogden, Utah

"There is no doubt that a flood of graces
will descend upon your family and the world
if more souls would
become docile pupils of adoration." 

Bl Pope John XXIII 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Sign and cause of UNITY

He is the Head to which the whole Church is joined,
so that the Church is His Body, the completion of Him
who everywhere and in all things is complete.  - Eph 1:22-23
“The Eucharist is equally sign and cause of the unity that binds together all members of the Lord’s Mystical Body.  And this unity achieves in every Mass its perfect expression, because Christ’s far-flung members, together with Mary, are conjoined with Him as offerer and offered alike.  Each time, then, that ‘we break this bread and drink this cup,’ the saints in heaven and the souls in purgatory join hands and link hearts with us in worshipping the Eucharistic Lord.  And we have the privilege of co-worshipping with such distinguished company because we are members of that Church which is mothered by Our Lady of the Eucharist.”

Fr Richard Foley, S.J.
Mary and the Eucharist (pg. 115)

Friday, July 19, 2013

This is the way - come


Before Leaving the Presence of
the Blessed Sacrament

Food of the world,
how long before the world
comes to Your table?
Banquet of love,
highways, byways,
teem with starving souls
not yet aware
that empty chairs await them.
How can I compel them
to come in?

Make me this day
the envelope of Your invitation,
the aroma of Your feast,
the song of Your minstrel,
the banner on Your door.
Let every movement of my days announce:
Come feed on the Bread of life!

Paul Thigpen
From Jesus We Adore You (2001)

Thursday, July 18, 2013

When did we see You sick...?

... I was sick and you looked after me ... Matthew 25:36c

From the moment of entry, each patient was given personal attention. Day and night, Camillus would go from bed to bed, listening to complaints, watching over the dying, giving Communion and Extreme Unction, making sure that a person was properly cured before being allowed to leave, and seeing to it that the food served was of good quality and properly cooked.

If the administration was slow in giving him the supplies that he needed, he would go out on foot or with a little donkey and beg from door to door. "I do not think," he said, "that in the whole world there is a field of flowers whose scent could be sweeter to me than is the smell of these hospitals."
"These holy places," as he once called the hospital,  “were also the best places to convert souls to God.”~
From Early History of the Order of St. Camillus, Servants of the Sick

St Camillus de Lellis
Italy ~ 1550-1614
Encouraged to priesthood by St Phillip Neri
Founder of Order: Fathers of Good Death
Patron of hospitals, nurses and the sick
FEAST DAY - July 18

 “The poor and the sick are the heart of God. In serving them,
we serve Jesus the Christ. ...We want to assist the sick
with the same love that a mother has for her only sick child."
~ Saint Camillus de Lellis

 St Camillus, pray for us!