Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Liturgy: above all, adoration

Praise be to the LORD... the LORD is my strength and my shield;
my heart trusts in him, and I am helped.  My heart leaps for joy,
and I will give thanks to him in song. - Psalm 28:7
"The liturgy is, above all, adoration. The Church is the work
of God, God's action; it is recognition of what God does for men.
And the adoration that the liturgy expresses, especially the Eucharist,
is the acknowledgment of God, that everything comes from Him,
that everything that belongs to us must find Him."

Cardinal Antonio Cañizares

Pope Pius V tirelessly worked to promote the true faith
and Divine Worship.  He standardized the Holy Mass
by promulgating the 1570 edition of the Roman Missal.
Pope St. Pius V
Italy  ~ 1504-1572
Dominican*, Church Reformer
"Pope of the Rosary"
*His decision to keep wearing his Dominican habit
led to the custom of the pope wearing a white cassock.
Feast Day - April 30
"All the evils in the world are due to
lukewarm Catholics." ~ St Pius V
St Pius V, pray for us!

More on St Pius V:

Probably the act for which Pius V will be longest remembered is his exemplary and unparalleled leadership at the time of the Battle of Lepanto.

In 1565, the Knights of Saint John defended Malta against a tremendous attack by the Turkish fleet and lost nearly every fighting man in the fortress. It was Pope Pius V who sent encouragement and money with which to rebuild their battered city. The pope called for a crusade among the Christian nations and appointed a leader who would be acceptable to all. He ordered the Forty Hours Devotion to be held in Rome, and he encouraged all to say the Rosary.

When the Christian fleet sailed out to meet the enemy, every man on board had received the sacraments, and all were praying the Rosary. The fleet was small, and numerically it was no match for the Turkish fleet, which so far had never met defeat. They met in the Bay of Lepanto on Sunday morning, October 7, 1565. After a day of bitter fighting, and, on the part of the Christians, miraculous help, the Turkish fleet - what was left of it - fled in disgrace, broken and defeated, its power crushed forever.

Before the victorious fleet returned to Rome, Pope Pius V had knowledge of the victory through miraculous means. He proclaimed a period of thanksgiving, placed the invocation, "Mary, Help of Christians" in the Litany of Loreto and established the feast of Our Lady of Victory (later changed to Our Lady of the Rosary) in commemoration of the victory.

ALSO worth noting ...

St Pius V inserted the Adoro Te Devote among the prayers of preparation and thanksgiving for the Mass into the Missal reformed by him in 1570.  (Prior to that, the text had remained unknown for two centuries since St Thomas Aquinas penned it.) From that date, the hymn was used in the universal Church as one of  the most loved Eucharistic prayers of the clergy and the Christian people.  Spend some time today meditating on its beauty and truth and express your gratitude for its preservation.  ***(This hymn is the inspiration of the TITLE of this blog - see verse two).
Words: St Thomas Aquinas, Translation: Gerard Manley Hopkins S.J.

Adoro te devote, latens Deitas,
Quæ sub his figuris vere latitas;
Tibi se cor meum totum subjicit,
Quia te contemplans totum deficit.

Visus, tactus, gustus in te fallitur,
Sed auditu solo tuto creditur.
Credo quidquid dixit Dei Filius;
Nil hoc verbo veritátis verius.

In cruce latebat sola Deitas,
At hic latet simul et Humanitas,
Ambo tamen credens atque confitens,
Peto quod petivit latro pœnitens.

Plagas, sicut Thomas, non intueor:
Deum tamen meum te confiteor.
Fac me tibi semper magis credere,
In te spem habere, te diligere. 

O memoriale mortis Domini!
Panis vivus, vitam præstans homini!
Præsta meæ menti de te vívere,
Et te illi semper dulce sapere.

Pie Pelicane, Jesu Domine,
Me immundum munda tuo sanguine:
Cujus una stilla salvum facere
Totum mundum quit ab omni scelere.

Jesu, quem velatum nunc aspicio,
Oro, fiat illud quod tam sitio:
Ut te revelata cernens facie,
Visu sim beátus tuæ gloriæ.

 Godhead here in hiding, whom I do adore,
Masked by these bare shadows, shape and nothing more,
See, Lord, at Thy service low lies here a heart
Lost, all lost in wonder at the God thou art.

Seeing, touching, tasting are in thee deceived:
How says trusty hearing? that shall be believed;
What God's Son has told me, take for truth I do;
Truth Himself speaks truly or there's nothing true.

On the cross Thy godhead made no sign to men,
Here Thy very manhood steals from human ken:
 Both are my confession, both are my belief,
And I pray the prayer of the dying thief.

I am not like Thomas, wounds I cannot see,
But can plainly call thee Lord and God as he;
Let me to a deeper faith daily nearer move,
Daily make me harder hope and dearer love.

O thou our reminder of Christ crucified,
Living Bread, the life of us for whom he died,
Lend this life to me then: feed and feast my mind,
There be thou the sweetness man was meant to find.

Bring the tender tale true of the Pelican;
Bathe me, Jesu Lord, in what Thy bosom ran
Blood whereof a single drop has power to win
All the world forgiveness of its world of sin.

Jesu, whom I look at shrouded here below,
I beseech thee send me what I thirst for so,
Some day to gaze on thee face to face in light
And be blest for ever with Thy glory's sight. Amen.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

He has left us Himself !

 "Love does not stay idle."
- St Catherine of Siena, Letter T82
Institution of the Eucharist ~ Barocci

O boundless charity! 
Just as you gave us yourself,
wholly God and wholly man,
so you left us all of Yourself as food
so that while we are pilgrims in this life
we might not collapse in our weariness
but be strengthened by You, heavenly food.

O mercenary people! 
And what has your God left you?
He has left you Himself,
wholly God and wholly man,
hidden under the whiteness of this bread.

O fire of love! 
Was it not enough to gift us
with creation in your image and likeness,
and to create us anew to grace in your Son's blood,
without giving us Yourself as food,
the whole of divine being,
the whole of God?

What drove You?
Nothing but Your charity,
mad with love as You are!

St Catherine of Siena
Italy  ~ 1347 -1380
Doctor of the Church
Reformer, mystic, writer
Third Order Dominican
FEAST DAY - April 29

“Be who God meant you to be and 
you will set the world on fire.”  ~ St. Catherine of Siena

St Catherine of Siena, pray for us!

Monday, April 28, 2014

This is the way - walk in it!

“When we work hard, we must eat well. What a joy, that you can receive Holy Communion often! It’s our life and support in this life.  Receive Communion often, and Jesus will change you into Himself.” - St Peter Julian Eymard

Eucharistic thoughts from three
'family members' on their FEAST DAY today...
St Louis de Montfort used to remain after Holy Mass for thanksgiving
at least a half hour, and he would not permit any need or assignment
to serve as a reason for omitting it.  He said, 
 "I would not give up this hour of thanksgiving
even for an hour of Paradise." 
St Louis de Montfort
France ~ 1673-1716
Priest, author, Marian devotee
Founder ~ Sisters of Divine Wisdom
FEAST DAY - April 28
'She (Mother Mary) is an echo of God, speaking and repeating only God.
If you say "Mary" she says 'God'." ~ St Louis de Montfort

St Louis de Montfort, pray for us!   
"Our body is a cenacle,
a monstrance:
through its crystal the world should see God."
St Gianna Beretta Molla
Wife, Mother, Doctor, Martyr
Italy (1922-1962)
FEAST DAY - April 28
“The life of Mamma was an act and a perennial action of faith and charity; it was a non-stop search for the will of God for every decision and for every work, with prayer and meditation, Holy Mass and the Eucharist,” explained St. Gianna’s husband to their children after her death.
St Gianna, pray for us!
 When called upon to justify his conversion,
one of Chanel's catechumens had said of him,
"He loves us. He does what he teaches.
He forgives his enemies. His teaching is good."
St Peter Chanel
Nee France ~ 1803-1841
Priest, Missionary, Protomartyr of Oceania
  Within two years after his death,
the whole island became Catholic and has remained so.
FEAST DAY - April 28
"No one is a martyr for a conclusion, no one is a martyr for an opinion;it is faith that makes martyrs"  ~ Bl John Cardinal Newman, Discourses to Mixed Congregations
St Peter Chanel, pray for us!

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Jesus, I trust in You!

“Let your heart ever belong to God through purity of intention,
attachment to His love, and confidence in His divine mercy. 
… You must reach the point where Jesus is sufficient to you.”
~ St. Peter Julian Eymard


"Let no one mourn that he has fallen again and again;
for forgiveness has risen from the grave." ~ St. John Chrysostom 

Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy (#10):

"Especially from the Eucharist,
grace is poured forth upon us as from a fountain."

 "O what awesome mysteries take place during Mass! ... One day we will know what God is doing for us in each Mass, and what sort of gift He is preparing in it for us.  Only His divine love could permit that such a gift be provided for us ... this fountain of life gushing forth with such sweetness and power (914) ...

"O living Host, my one and only strength, fountain of love and mercy, embrace the whole world, fortify faint souls.  Oh, blessed be the instant and the moment when Jesus left us His most merciful Heart!" (223).

St Maria Faustina Kowalska
Diary: Divine Mercy in my Soul

Be merciful to me, Lord, for I am faint;
O Lord, heal me, for my bones are in agony. ~ Psalm 6:2
"No traveling soul can worthily love its God, but when this soul does everything it possibly can, and trusts in divine mercy, why should Jesus reject it?  Didn't He command us to love God in accordance with our strength?  When you have given and consecrated everything to God, why do you fear?" ~ St Pio (1916) 

“Trust the past to the mercy of God, the present to His Love
and the future to His Providence. ” ~ St. Augustine

 "Pray with great confidence, with confidence based upon the
goodness and infinite generosity of God and upon the promises of
Jesus Christ. God is a spring of living water which flows unceasingly
into the hearts of those who pray." ~ St. Louis de Montfort

Jesus, I trust in You!

Canonization: 27 April 2014

Sts John XXIII and John Paul II, pray for us!

Saturday, April 26, 2014

From the altar of our hearts... (EASTER SATURDAY)

 ...and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. - Col 3:3

"When we go before Jesus on the altar,
we always find Him with Mary His Mother,
as the magi did at Bethlehem (Mt 2:11). 

And Jesus in the sacred Host,
from the altar of our hearts,
can repeat to each one of us what He said to
St John the Evangelist from the altar of Calvary,
Behold thy Mother (Jn 19:27). 

Fr Stefano Manelli, O.F.M.

Detail: Caravaggio Madonna of Loreto

Friday, April 25, 2014

It is up to us ... to tell! (EASTER FRIDAY)

So then, men ought to regard us as servants of Christ and as those
entrusted with the secret things of God.  Now it is required that those
who have been given a trust must prove faithful.  ...
You are fools for Christ, but you are so wise in Christ! - I Cor 4: 1,2,10
Still Life of Flowers and Grapes Encircling a Monstrance ~ Jan van Kessel (1670)

"Our people are becoming like Mary Magdela when she came to the tomb. 'They have taken the Lord from the tomb, and we don't know where they put Him' (Jn 20:2).  It is up to us... to tell our people where our Risen Savior is.

The Blessed Sacrament is Our Risen Savior with all the power of His love and mercy flowing out to those who come into His presence!  This is where we must run, like Peter and John.  This is where we must bring everyone. 

For each holy hour will advance the day when the light of His love and mercy will shine out, and then like Him, His people will be resurrected."
Excerpt from Letters to a Brother Priest
 Rev. Fr. Vincent Martin Lucia and Rev. Msgr. Josefino Ramirez 

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Lose yourself in His immensity! (EASTER THURSDAY)

You have made known to me the path of life;  you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand. - Psalm 16:11

St Bridget of Sweden Catholic Church ~ Van Nuys, California ~ USA.   Artist: Gerald Fecht 2010

"Oh, I love to reflect on the presence of God in a soul! To think that we are immersed in God, that we are in Him, that we live and move in Him, that it is He who sustains us and gives us life, and who gives us the being that we have! Without Him we would not be. What effect do such thoughts not produce is one’s soul?
I compare this presence of God to the atmosphere: at certain times the sky is covered with cirrus clouds, but if the weather is windy, these clouds are blown away and not a single one remains. Then the sky becomes splendid with brightness and beauty. You will notice the same thing when the sun appears in multiple rays.
So it is in the soul. If your interior is filled with a thousand things that worry you, that afflict you, that trouble you and paralyse your spirit, apply yourself to the presence of God. Surrender yourself to Him. Look at Him, and think only of Him. Recall His goodness and His mercies. Occupy yourself with His greatnesses and His infinite perfections. 
Lose yourself in His adorable, divine immensity, and you will come to realise that all that was troubling you has been dispelled. And you will feel your soul in a surprising calmness and peace."

Mother Mectilde de Bar 
18 April 1694

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The wealth of His love... (EASTER WEDNESDAY)

 In Christ who is the source of my strength
I have strength for everything.  - Phil 4:13

"Love makes the heart leap and dance.
Love makes it exult and be festive.
Love makes it sing and be silent as it pleases.
Love grants it rest and enables it to act.
Love possesses it and gives it everything.
Love takes it over completely and dwells in it.
And Holy Communion is the mansion of love."

St. Veronica Giuliani

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Eucharistic reign (EASTER TUESDAY)

Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink.  Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him."
John 7:37-38

Queen of Heaven Catholic Church  ~ Adoration Chapel ~ Uniontown, Ohio ~ USA

“O Jesus, present in the Sacrament of the altar, teach all the nations to serve you with willing hearts, knowing that to serve God is to reign. May your sacrament, O Jesus, be light to the mind, strength to the will, joy to the heart. May it be the support of the weak, the comfort of the suffering, the wayfaring bread of salvation for the dying and for all the pledge of future glory. Amen.”
Pope Bl John XXIII began the Second Vatican Council with the hope that a new era of Eucharistic piety would pervade the Church. His writings, especially Journal of a Soul, express his love of the Blessed Sacrament.

Through adoration, the Christian mysteriously contributes to the radical transformation of the world and to the sowing of the Gospel. Anyone who prays to the Saviour draws the whole world with him and raises it to God. Those who stand before the Lord are therefore fulfilling an eminent service. They are presenting to Christ all those who do not know him or are far from him; they keep watch in his presence on their behalf.”
Pope Bl John Paul II initiated Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration in 1981 at St. Peter’s in Rome. Throughout his papacy, our beloved Holy Father, encouraged parishes throughout the world to begin Perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.


Canonization: 27 April 2014

Monday, April 21, 2014

Allelujah is our song! (EASTER MONDAY)

The first eight days of the Easter season ("Bright Week") make up the Octave of Easter and celebrated as Solemnities of the Lord.  Singing the Easter sequence, Victimae Paschali Laudes, at Mass throughout the Octave is recommended, though not required.  At the end of Masses during the Easter Octave, the dismissal, as at Easter, is sung by the deacon or priest; to which the people respond in song, “Thanks be to God, Alleluia! Alleluia!”

 “Let us keep the holy feast of Pascha and then, adding day by day
the holy Pentecost, which we regard as feast upon feast,
we shall keep the festival of the Spirit.” ~ St. Athanasius (4th c)

Assumption Grotto Parish ~ Detroit,  Michigan ~ USA ~ Photo credit:  Jeff Williams
"We are an Easter people
and 'Allelujah' is our song."
St Augustine  

"...  we are given two liturgical seasons, one before Easter and the other after. The season before Easter signifies the troubles in which we live here and now, while the time after Easter which we are celebrating at present signifies the happiness that will be ours in the future. What we commemorate before Easter is what we experience in this life; what we celebrate after Easter points to something we do not yet possess. This is why we keep the first season with fasting and prayer; but now the fast is over and we devote the present season to praise. Such is the meaning of the Alleluia we sing. ...

Now therefore, brethren, we urge you to praise God. That is what we are all telling each other when we say Alleluia. You say to your neighbor, “Praise the Lord!” and he says the same to you. We are all urging one another to praise the Lord, and all thereby doing what each of us urges the other to do. But see that your praise comes from your whole being; in other words, see that you praise God not with your lips and voices alone, but with your minds, your lives and all your actions."

Excerpt from St. Augustine's discourse
on the Psalms (Ps. 148, 1-2: CCL 40, 2165-2166)  

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Let us be on our way!

"The Gospel of Easter is very clear:
we need to go back there, to see Jesus risen, and to become witnesses of his resurrection. This is not to go back in time; it is not a kind of nostalgia. It is returning to our first love, in order to receive the fire which Jesus has kindled in the world and to bring that fire to all people, to the very ends of the earth.

Galilee of the Gentiles” (Mt 4:15; Is 8:23)! Horizon of the Risen Lord, horizon of the Church; intense desire of encounter.... Let us be on our way!"
19 APRIL 2014
Christ is risen!
Christ is risen!
Christ is risen!

Christ is risen to go before us:
our Brother to the Father,
our Priest to the Altar.
our Saviour to the world!


Obtain for us now a new ardor born of the resurrection, 
that we may bring to all the Gospel of life which triumphs over death.
Give us a holy courage to seek new paths, that the gift of unfading beauty
may reach every man and woman.
- Evangelii Gaudium #288

Saturday, April 19, 2014

His love could not be extinguished!

Holy Saturday is sacred as the day of the Lord's rest; it has been called the "Second Sabbath" after creation. The day is and should be the most calm and quiet day of the entire Church year, a day broken by no liturgical function and is chiefly a day of solemn vigil for the Lord’s resurrection.

“By a beautiful paradox of Divine love, God makes His Cross the very means of our salvation and our life. We have slain Him; we have nailed Him there and crucified Him; but the Love in His eternal heart could not be extinguished. He willed to give us the very life we slew; to give us the very Food we destroyed; to nourish us with the very Bread we buried, and the very Blood we poured forth. He made our very crime into a happy fault; He turned a Crucifixion into a Redemption; a Consecration into a Communion; a death into Life Everlasting."
Venerable Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, This is the Mass

Friday, April 18, 2014

His love binds !

Good Friday 
The royal banners forward go,
The cross shines forth in mystic glow;
Where He in flesh, our flesh Who made,
Our sentence bore, our ransom paid.

First verse from the hymn for Evening Prayer that is assigned in the Roman Breviary from Passion (Palm) Sunday to Wednesday of Holy Week—Vexilla RegisThe Royal Banners forward Go—whose text has served the Latin Church in its Liturgy of the Hours for well over 1,000 years.

“‘And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all things to Myself.’ It was from the height of His Cross that our Lord first drew all the souls to Himself by redeeming them.  But when our Lord uttered these words, He certainly also had in mind His Eucharistic throne, to the foot of which He means to draw all souls so as to bind them there with the chains of His love.”

St. Peter Julian Eymard

Souls have all the same price,
which is that of the Precious Blood of Jesus."

~ Blessed Charles de Foucauld

Where deep for us the spear was dyed,
Life’s torrent rushing from His side,
To wash us in that precious flood,
Where mingled water flowed, and blood.
Second verse - Vexilla RegisThe Royal Banners forward Go

("The Face of Christ, the Face of Man"- MEDITATIONS by H.E. Msgr. Giancarlo Maria Bregantini, Archbishop of Campobasso-Boiano -
Stations will be led by the Holy Father on Good Friday, April 18, 2014)

O cross, our one reliance, hail!
Still may thy power with us avail
To give new virtue to the saint,
And pardon to the penitent.

To Thee, eternal Three in One,
Let homage meet by all be done:
As by the cross Thou dost restore, 
So rule and guide us evermore.  Amen.
Sixth and seventh verses - Vexilla Regis—The Royal Banners forward Go—