Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Happy is the soul...

"The Eucharist is at the very center of our life;
such was the teaching of Jesus. ...  The Christian faith is
faith in the Eucharistic Christ." - Jean Galot, SJ
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"Happy is the soul
that knows how to find
Jesus in the Eucharist,
and the Eucharist in all things!"
St Peter Julian Eymard

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Painting above: Grand-mere et petite fille a la campagne by Ernst Karl Georg Zimmerman (1901)

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Visit, speak, listen, entrust...

O Lord, you are good and forgiving,
full of mercy to all who call to you. - Ps 86: 5
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 “I want to encourage everyone to visit
if possible, every day—
especially amid life’s difficulties,
the Blessed Sacrament
of the infinite love of Christ
and His mercy,
preserved in our churches and often abandoned,
to speak filially with Him,
to listen to Him in silence,
and to peacefully entrust yourself to Him."
 Pope Francis
Photo: Brooks family, St Joseph's Catholic Church, Alexandria, VA 
Photo Credit: CNS photo/Nancy Phelan Wiecher  (2011)

Monday, August 29, 2016

God becomes little...

"Jesus, what made You so small?  LOVE!
- St Bernard of Clarivaux

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"Let us rediscover the beauty of the
Sacrament of the Eucharist, which expresses all of
God's humility and holiness: He makes Himself little -- 
God becomes little -- a fragment of the universe,
to reconcile all things in His love."

Pope Benedict XVI
Aug. 19, 2012 ~ Angelus

Sunday, August 28, 2016

God gives His ALL ...

 "To fall in love with God is the greatest of all romances; 
to seek Him, the greatest adventure;
to find Him, the greatest human achievement." - St Augustine 

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"God in His omnipotence could not give more,
in His wisdom knew not how to give more,
in His riches had not more to give,
than the Eucharist."

St Augustine

As a 4th Century homily reminds....
"The Lord's Day is the lord of days..."
yet today remembering...
St Augustine's
FEAST DAY - August 28
North Africa ~ 354-430
Bishop, Doctor of the Church
Powerful intellect, stirring orator, prolific writer

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“If you believe what you like in the gospel, and reject
what you don't like, it is not the gospel you believe,
but yourself. - St. Augustine of Hippo 

"In 397, or twelve years after his conversion, Augustine wrote his Confessions, the greatest spiritual autobiography ever written. It is the work of a teacher who explains, a philosopher who thinks, and a theologian who instructs. It is the  work of a poet who achieves chaste beauty in the writing, and a mystic who pours out thanks for having found himself in peace. " - Ven Fulton J. Sheen in St Augustine of Hippo

St Augustine, pray for us!

Saturday, August 27, 2016

May it be said of you and of me...

My heart is steadfast, O God ... - Psalm 108, 1a


St Augustine has left us this praise of his mother, St Monica:

"She did not let a day pass
without being present
at the Divine Sacrifice
before Your altar, O Lord."

St Monica
North Africa ~ 333-387
Mother of St Augustine
Patroness of Married women and Mothers
FEAST DAY - August 27

"Nothing is far from God." - St Monica

As recounted by Augustine... before his mother died she told him:

"There was indeed one thing for which I wished to tarry a little in this life, and that was that I might see you a Catholic before I died. My God hath answered this more than abundantly, so that I see you are now made His servant and spurning all earthly happiness. What more am I to do here?"

Prayer for St Monica's intercession
Exemplary mother of the great Augustine, you perseveringly pursued your wayward son not with wild threats but with prayerful cries to heaven. Intercede for all mothers in our day so that they may learn to draw their children to God. Teach them how to remain close to their children, even the prodigal sons and daughters who have sadly gone astray. Amen.
St Monica, pray for us!

Friday, August 26, 2016

Motherly advice... of the highest sort ...

 But you would be fed with the finest of wheat;
with honey from the rock, I would satisfy you. - Psalm 81:16

"If I can give you any advice, I beg you
to get closer to the Eucharist and to Jesus...
We must pray to Jesus to give us
that tenderness of the Eucharist."

 Bl Mother Teresa of Calcutta
Anniversary of birth
August 26, 1910
Anticipated canonization: Sept 4, 2016

Fine art above: Artist: Emile Friant

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Christ's Word: sufficient...

... so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return
to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire
and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. - Isaiah 55:11 

"In the person of St Louis IX were the qualities which form a great king, a hero of romance, and a saint!  With his death, the century of knights ended.  One day a messenger, breathless with haste, burst in upon the king with surprising and exciting news. "Your majesty," he cried, "hasten to the Church!  A great miracle is occurring there.  A priest is saying holy Mass, and after the consecration, instead of the host there is visible on the altar Jesus Himself in His human figure.  Everybody is marveling at it.  Hurry before it disappears."

To the astonishment of the messenger, the saintly monarch calmly replied:

Let them go to see the miracle who have any doubt regarding the Real Presence of our Lord in the Holy Sacrament.  As for me, even if I saw Jesus on the altar in His visible form, and touched Him with my hand, and heard His voice, I should not be more convinced than I now am, that He is present in the consecrated Host.  
The word of Christ is sufficient for me.  
I need no miracle."

Excerpt from Hidden Treasure, the Riches of the Eucharist, Louis Kaczmarek

King St Louis IX
France ~ 1214-1270
Good and generous king, model father
Wife: Margaret of Provence
Father of eleven children
FEAST DAY - August 25

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From St Louis' mother...
"Never forget that sin is the only great evil in the world. No mother
could love her son more than I love you. But I would rather see you lying
dead at my feet than know that you had offended God by one mortal sin."

King St Louis IX, pray for us!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Home sweet home! ...

The LORD is near to all who call upon him, 
to all who call upon him in truth. - Psalm 145:18 

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“It became obvious why Catholics had built such beautiful cathedrals and churches throughout the world. 
Not as gathering or meeting places for Christians. 
But as a home for Jesus Himself in the Blessed Sacrament. 
Cathedrals house Jesus. 
Christians merely come and visit Him. 
The cathedrals and churches architecturally 
prepare our souls
for the beauty of the Eucharist.”

 Allen R. Hunt
Excerpt from: Confessions of a Mega Church Pastor: 
How I Discovered the Hidden Treasure of the Catholic Church (2010)

Photo above: Cathedral of St Paul (National Shrine of St Paul)  ~ St Paul, MN  - All are welcome!


Today is the FEAST DAY of St Bartholomew
Nee: Cana
Apostle and Martyr
"Here is a true child of Israel. There is no duplicity in him."
- said of St Bartholomew by Jesus - Gospel of St John 1: 47


Among the twelve apostles great…There was Bartholomew…Known also as Nathanael…Among Christ’s chosen few…He too received The Holy Ghost…And he preached everywhere…That every soul might turn to God…And no one might despair…St Philip introduced him to…The Master and The Lord…And thus he came to understand…The goal he struggled toward…Bartholomew proclaimed the faith…Through all the barbarous East…And in the truest Christian sense…He was a holy priest…His death was double martyrdom…As legend now abide…Condemned to death, Bartholomew…Was flayed and crucified.  ~ James Metcalfe, Poem Portraits of the Saints

St Bartholomew, pray for us!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

To pass entirely into God...

...enter into the joy of your master. - Matthew 25: 21, 23

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“St Rose of Lima was so ardent in her love of God in the Blessed Sacrament that when she knelt in His presence the fire which sparkled in her eyes showed the flame which consumed her soul.  At times she appeared like an angel. 

If anyone asked her what effects the Blessed Sacrament produced in her, she stammered and said she had no words to express them, but that she seemed to pass entirely into God, and was inundated with such happiness that nothing in common life could be compared to it” (pg 34, Hidden Treasure).  ...

“St Joseph Benedict LaBre, St Paschal Baylon and St Rose of Lima are three saints that we know of who spent forty straight hours in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament commemorating the forty hours Christ was in the tomb” (pg 39, Hidden Treasure).

From Hidden Treasure, The Riches of the Eucharist ~ Louis Kaczmarek

St Rose of Lima
Peru ~ 1586-1617
Father - Spaniard ~ Mother - Indian
Third Order Dominican, Mystic
First Canonized Saint of the New World
Patroness of the Americas, Philippines
FEAST DAY - Aug 23

PHOTO above: Holy Redeemer Adoration Chapel - Madison , WI - USA

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"Apart from the cross there is no other ladder
by which we may get to heaven." ~ St Rose of Lima

Click here: Saint Rose of Lima - YouTube (2 mins)

St Rose of Lima, pray for us!

Monday, August 22, 2016

Queenship of Mary...

 "I shall sing a hymn to the mother, the Queen, whom I joyously
 approach in praise, gladly celebrating her wonders in song. . . 
Our tongue cannot worthily praise thee, O Lady; for thou who 
hast borne Christ the king art exalted above the seraphim. . . 
Hail, O Queen of the world; hail, O Mary, Queen of us all."
-  Axathistos (Byzantine hymn) 

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Feast of Queenship of Mary ~ August 22*
*Octave of Feast of the Assumption (August 15)

 Feast established - Pope Pius XII - October 11, 1954
Encyclical Letter "Ad Caeli Reginam."
He points out that Mary deserves the title because she is Mother of God, 
because she is closely associated as the New Eve with Jesus’ redemptive work, 
because of her preeminent perfection and because of her intercessory power.

“When she became Mother of the Creator,
she truly became Queen of every creature.”St. John Damascene

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The Coronation of the Virgin, Ridolfo Ghirlandaio (1483-1561)

"Every time the Son of God comes again to us in the “poverty” of the sacramental signs of bread and wine, the seeds of that new history wherein the mighty are “put down from their thrones” and “those of low degree are exalted” (cf. Lk 1:52), take root in the world. Mary sings of the “new heavens” and the “new earth” 
which find in the Eucharist their anticipation and in some sense their programme and plan. The Magnificat expresses Mary's spirituality, and there is nothing greater than this spirituality for helping us to experience the mystery of the Eucharist. The Eucharist has been given to us so that our life, like that of Mary, may become completely a Magnificat!   

Ecclesia de Eucharistia (58)

Mary, then, is a Queen; but for our common consolation, be it known
that she is a Queen so sweet, clement, and so ready to help us
that Holy Church wills that we salute her as Queen of Mercy.  
Mary is Queen of Mercy as Jesus is King of Justice.” 

St. Alphonsus de Liguori - Glories of Mary

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“It is true that Our Lady is Queen of Heaven and earth,
but at the same time she is more Mother than Queen.” - St. Therese of Lisieux

 Mary, our Mother, Queen of Heaven, 
pray for us!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Opening one's soul ... for the world...

"Begin all of your periods of adoration with an act of love,
and you will open your soul deliciously
to His divine action." - St Peter Julian Eymard

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"Through adoration
the Christian contributes mysteriously
to the radical transformation
of the world."

St John Paul II

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Saturday, August 20, 2016

No longer I, but Christ...

 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live,  
but Christ who lives in me; and the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith 
in the Son of God,who loved me and gave Himself for me - Gal. 2: 20


“If we do not experience
so frequent and violent attacks
of anger, envy and concupiscence as formerly,
let us give thanks
to Jesus Christ in the Blessed Sacrament,
who has produced these effects in us.”

St Bernard of Clairvaux
  France ~ 1090 -1153
Cistercian Abbot
Founded 40+ monasteries in lifetime
Eloquent preacher
Mellifluous ("full of honey") Doctor of the Church
FEAST DAY – August 20

"There are those who seek knowledge for the sake of knowledge - That is curiosity.
There are those who seek knowledge to be known by others -That is vanity.
There are those who seek knowledge in order to serve - That is love." - St Bernard

Click here: St. Bernard of Clairvaux - YouTube (2 mins) 
Click here: St Bernard of Clairvaux: Authentic Christian Masculinity - YouTube 
(12 mins - excellent!)
Click here: St. Bernard of Clairvaux: Medieval Psychologist - Crisis Magazine
Some of St. Bernard's writings can be downloaded here.

St Bernard of Clairvaux, pray for us!