Sunday, August 31, 2014

Christ's love compels...

For Christ's love compels us ...  II Cor 5:14a 
And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.  God is love. 
Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.  In this way, love is made 
complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, 
because in this world we are like Him. 
There is no fear in love... I John 16 -18a
"The worship paid to the Divine Eucharist
strongly impels the soul to cultivate a 'social' love,
by which the common good is given preference
over the good of the individual."
Pope Paul VI
Mysterium Fidei

Saturday, August 30, 2014

"Come to my help."

Save me, O God, for the waters have come up to my neck.
... I am worn out calling for help; my throat is parched.
My eyes fail, looking for my God.  - Psalm 69: 1, 3 

"Go and find Him when your patience and strength run out
and you feel alone and helpless.  Jesus is waiting for you in the chapel. 
Say to Him, 'Jesus, you know exactly what is going on.
You are all I have, and you know all things. Come to my help.' 
And then go, and don’t worry about how 
you are going to manage. That you have told God about it is enough.  
He has a good memory."

St Jeanne Jugan
Sr Mary of the Cross
France ~ 1792 - 1879
Foundress - Little Sisters of the Poor
FEAST DAY - Aug 30
“God will help us; the work is His.” ~ St Jeanne Jugan

St Jeanne Jugan, pray for us!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Preach it!

(Jesus said) "I am the Bread of Life." - John 6:48

"The present and future tribulations
of the church and of nations
is greater than any other period.

The devotion that God gives us
for the succor of the Church and of nations
is devotion to the Blessed Sacrament.
Preach it always; preach it everywhere."

Pope Leo XIII (+1903)

Bishop Paul Etienne, Holy Thursday Mass, 2013 ~ Cheyenne, Wyoming ~ USA


Thursday, August 28, 2014


“You have made us for Yourself, and our hearts are restless
until they find their rest in You.” Augustine of Hippo, Confessions
"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
Bishop, Doctor of the Church
Powerful intellect, stirring orator, prolific writer
North Africa ~ 354-430
FEAST DAY - August 28

“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. " - Bishop Fulton J. Sheen in St Augustine of Hippo

St Augustine, pray for us!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

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!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

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
Artist: Emile Friant

"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

Monday, August 25, 2014

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
Father of eleven children
FEAST DAY - August 25

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!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

His witness...before the world

Be kind and compassionate to one another... Be imitators of God...
and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave Himself up
for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.  - Eph 4:32a, 5:1a, 2

"He strengthens you constantly
by His Presence in the Eucharist,
so that you can be His witness before the world. 
Are you ready to say ‘yes’ to Him?"

Pope Francis
14 August 2014
Seoul, Korea

Saturday, August 23, 2014

To pass entirely into God...

 Come and share your master's happiness! - Matthew 25: 21/23


“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).

Excerpts 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

“When we serve the poor and the sick we serve Jesus.
We must not fail to help our neighbors,
because in them we serve Jesus.” - St Rose of Lima

 St Rose of Lima, pray for us!

Friday, August 22, 2014

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) 
Feast of Queenship of Mary ~ August 22*
*Octave of feast of 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
Carlo Crivelli

"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

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

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Most noble, profitable, sweetest

 “Among all these I sought a resting place; 
in whose inheritance should I abide?" - Sirach 24:7

Fribourg Cathedral ~ Switzerland (Photo credit- Lawrence, OP) 

"The devotion to the Eucharist
is the most noble
because it has God as its object;
it is the most profitable for salvation,
because It gives us the Author of Grace;
it is the sweetest,
because the Lord is Sweetness Itself."

St Pius X
"Pope of the Eucharist"
Italy~ 1835-1914
257th Pope - 1903 to 1914
Papal motto: "To renew all things in Christ"
Extended age of First Communion to age seven. Advocated frequent Communion, continual Catechesis for all, daily Scripture reading by all. 
Reformed the liturgy, promoted clear and simple homilies,
brought Gregorian chant back, condemned the Modernist heresy.
FEAST DAY - August 21


Describing Pius X, an historian wrote that he was
“a man of God who knew the unhappiness of the world
and the hardships of life, and in the
greatness of his heart wanted to comfort everyone.”

 St Pius X, pray for us!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

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

Some of St. Bernard's writings can be downloaded here.

St Bernard of Clairvaux, pray for us!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Be the Heart of my heart...

O Heart all lovable and all loving of my Savior, be the Heart of my heart, the soul of my soul, the spirit of my spirit, the life of my life and the sole principle of all my thoughts, words and actions, of all the faculties of my soul, and of all my senses, both interior and exterior. Amen. ~ Prayer by St. John Eudes to the Sacred Heart of Jesus


"Your most loving Heart, O Jesus,
dwells in this Sacrament
burning with love for us
It is there continually performing
thousands of good deeds towards us."
St. John Eudes
France ~ 1601-1680
Priest, gifted preacher and confessor
Encouraged devotions to twin Hearts of Jesus and Mary
 Central theme of his writings: Jesus as the source of holiness,
Mary as the model of the Christian life.
Dedicated to counsel and defend morally endangered women,
he founded an association of priests (Eudists) and religious -
Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Charity
(later known as Good Shepherd Sisters)
FEAST DAY - August 19
“Our wish, our object, our chief preoccupation must be to form Jesus in ourselves, to make His spirit, His devotion, His affections, His desires and His disposition live and reign there. All our religious exercises should be directed to this end. It is the work which God has given us to do unceasingly.”

St. John Eudes, The Life and Reign of Jesus in Christian Souls

St John Eudes, pray for us!

Monday, August 18, 2014

O res mirabilis! ~ Oh, thing miraculous!

Jesus said to them: "...For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world."  – John 6:33

ROME, August 15, 2014 (Rome Reports) - The Pope celebrated the first Mass of his five day trip to South Korea. As thousands were receiving the Eucharist, 'Panis Angelicus' was sung by a solo artist.
To view the video click here(4 mins) - Lyrics below

Bread of the Angels
Originally written in Latin
by St. Thomas Aquinas as part of larger hymn,
Sacris solemniis (for the feast of Corpus Christi)

Panis angelicus
fit panis hominum;
Dat panis cœlicus
figuris terminum:
O res mirabilis!
Manducat Dominum
Pauper, servus et humilis.

Te trina Deitas
unaque poscimus:
Sic nos tu visita,
sicut te colimus;
Per tuas semitas
duc nos quo tendimus,
Ad lucem quam inhabitas.
Bread of the Angels
Is made bread for mankind;
Gifted bread of Heaven
Of all imaginings the end;
Oh, thing miraculous!
This body of God will nourish
the poor, the servile, and the humble.

Thee Triune God,
We beseech;
Do us Thou visit,
Just as Thee we worship.
By Thy ways,
lead us where we are heading,
to the light Thou dwellest in.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Having a "Eucharistic soul"

 ... I sing in the shadow of your wings. 
My soul clings to you... - Psalm 63:7b,8a

Saint Josemaría Escriva often talked about the need for Christian life to be essentially Eucharistic. He summed it up in a classic phrase: having a “Eucharistic soul”.  He never failed to tell people:

“As often as you can, escape to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, to keep Him company, even for just a few seconds.

And tell Him with all your soul that you love Him, that you want to love Him more, and that you love Him for all the people on earth, including those who say they don't love Him.”

St Josemaría often prayed and sang the hymn Adoro te devote, “O Godhead hid”.
He advised his spiritual children, in order to increase their faith in the Eucharist, to say it and meditate on it every Thursday, asking our Lord to increase the piety of all Christians.

Anyone willing to take up this Saint's challenge?!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

"never-ceasing silent appeal of the Tabernacle"

In him and through faith in him we may approach God
with freedom and confidence. – Ephesians 3:12

St Joseph Catholic Church ~ Bonne Terre, MO ~ USA (Photo credit:  Mark Abeln)

J.R.R. Tolkien's personal piety was simple:
Confession before Mass, Mass everyday and Rosary before bed. The sole ultimate focus of his devotion was the Blessed Sacrament.

Here is the conclusion of a very moving letter he wrote to his son Michael in 1941:

''Out of the darkness of my life, so much frustrated, I put before you the one great thing to love on earth: the Blessed Sacrament... There you will find romance, glory, honour, fidelity, and the true way of all your loves upon earth... (The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, no. 43)

In another moving letter, written 22 years later to the same son, Tolkien writes:

''But I fell in love with the Blessed Sacrament from the beginning - and by the mercy of God never have fallen out again: but alas! I indeed did not live up to it...Out of wickedness and sloth I almost ceased to practice my religion - especially at Leeds, and at 22 Northmoor Road. Not for me the Hound of Heaven, but the never-ceasing silent appeal of the Tabernacle, and the sense of starving hunger. I regret those days bitterly (and suffer for them with such patience as I can be given); most of all because I failed as a father.

Now I pray for you all, unceasingly, that the Healer (the Hælend as the Saviour was usually called in Old English) shall heal my defects, and that none of you shall ever cease to cry Benedictus qui venit in nomine Domini.'' (Ibid. no. 250).

JRR Tolkien

Friday, August 15, 2014

Let us follow her... who follows Him...

In 1950, Pope Pius XII defined Mary's Assumption into heaven as a dogma of Roman Catholicism: "the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heaven." The proclamation of this dogma was made in the encyclical: Munificentissimus Deus. After entering heaven, Mary has remained active in the life of the Church.
Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Solemnity ~ August 15

"Today, she who "belongs to Christ" by a unique, abiding, and unrepeatable privilege, the most holy Theotokos and ever-virgin Mary, follows where He has gone, "through the greater and more perfect tent not made by human hands, that is, not of this creation . . . into the Holy Place" (Heb 9:11). Today the sacred and living ark of the living God, who conceived her Creator Himself,  takes up her abode in the temple of God." ~ St John Damascene

 Assumpta est Maria in caelum, gaudent angeli, laudantes benedicunt Dominum!
Mary has been taken up into heaven;
the angels rejoice and, praising, bless the Lord!


"Above all, let us listen to Mary Most Holy, in whom the mystery of the Eucharist appears, more than in anyone else, as a mystery of light. Gazing upon Mary, we come to know the transforming power present in the Eucharist. In her we see the world renewed in love.

Contemplating her, assumed body and soul into heaven, we see opening up before us those 'new heavens' and that 'new earth' which will appear at the second coming of Christ. Here below, the Eucharist represents their pledge, and in a certain way, their anticipation: 'Veni, Domine Iesu!'’” (Rev 22:20).
St John Paul IIEcclesia de Eucharistia, 62

"And now death came; not indeed clothed in mourning and grief, as it does to others, but adorned with light and gladness. But what do we say? Why speak of death? Let us rather say that divine love came, and cut the thread of that noble life. And as a light, before going out, gives a last and brighter flash than ever, so did this beautiful creature, on hearing her Son's invitation to follow him, wrapped in the flames of love, and in the midst of her loving sighs, give a last sigh of still more ardent love, and breathing forth her soul, expired. Thus was that great soul, that beautiful dove of the Lord, loosened from the bands of this life; thus did she enter into the glory of the blessed, where she is now seated, and will be seated, Queen of Paradise, for all eternity." - St Alphonsus de Liguori

"The Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the oldest Marian Feast, returns every year in the heart of summer. It is an opportunity to rise with Mary to the heights of the spirit where one breathes the pure air of supernatural life and contemplates the most authentic beauty, the beauty of holiness. The atmosphere of today’s celebration is steeped in paschal joy. “Today”, the antiphon of the Magnificat says, “the Virgin Mary was taken up to Heaven. Rejoice, for she reigns with Christ for ever. Alleluia”. This proclamation speaks to us of an event that is utterly unique and extraordinary, yet destined to fill the heart of every human being with hope and happiness.
Mary is indeed the first fruit of the new humanity, the creature in whom the mystery of Christ – his Incarnation, death, Resurrection and Ascension into Heaven – has already fully taken effect, redeeming her from death and conveying her, body and soul, to the Kingdom of immortal life.
For this reason, as the Second Vatican Council recalls, the Virgin Mary is a sign of certain hope and comfort to us (cf. Lumen Gentium, n. 68).  Today's feast impels us to lift our gaze to Heaven; not to a heaven consisting of abstract ideas or even an imaginary heaven created by art, but the Heaven of true reality which is God Himself.  God is Heaven.  He is our destination, the destination and the eternal dwelling place from which we come and for which we are striving." 
- Pope Benedict XVI - August 15, 2008 (Homily)

The Virgin of Nazareth who surrendered her heart, her soul, and her flesh to the Word and the overshadowing of the Holy Ghost;
the Virgin of Bethlehem, joyful in her poverty;
the Virgin of Egypt, trusting in her exile;
the Virgin of Jerusalem, anguished and amazed by her child;
the Virgin of Cana, strong in her intercession;
the Virgin of Calvary, faithful in her compassion;
the Virgin of Holy Saturday, silent and indomitable in her hope;
the Virgin of the Cenacle, persevering in prayer;
the Virgin of the Mount of Olives, ardent in her desire,
has, at last, come to rest at the feet of her Son.  (Dom Mark Kirby, OSB)

Click here: Apostolic Constitution defining the Dogma of the Assumption - Munificentissimus Deus