Sunday, December 16, 2012

O Antiphons prayers starts on the first day of Christmas Octave, 17th of December

Click for link HERE
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Saturday, December 08, 2012

Novena to the Immaculate Conception starts today - click to pray




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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

While some people were speaking about how the temple was adorned with costly stones and votive offerings, he said, All that you see here--the days will come when there will not be left a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down. Then they asked him, "Teacher, when will this happen? And what sign will there be when all these things are about to happen?" He answered, "See that you not be deceived, for many will come in my name, saying, 'I am he,' and 'The time has come.' Do not follow them! When you hear of wars and insurrections, do not be terrified; for such things must happen first, but it will not immediately be the end." Then he said to them, "Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be powerful earthquakes, famines, and plagues from place to place; and awesome sights and mighty signs will come from the sky. (St Luke, 21:5-11)


In place of Solomon's temple, Christ has built a temple of living stones, (1Pt 2;5) the communion of saints. At its center, he stands as the eternal high priest; on its altar he is himself the perpetual sacrifice. And, in turn, the whole of creation is drawn into the "liturgy": the fruits of the earth as the mysterious offerings, the flowers and the lighted candlesticks, the carpets and the curtain, the ordained priest, and the anointing and blessing of God's house. Not even the cherubim are missing. Fashioned by the hand of the artist, the visible forms stand watch beside the Holy of Holies. And, as living copies of them, the monks resembling angels surround the sacrificial altar and make sure that the praise of God does not cease, as in heaven so on earth... Their morning hymns of praise call all of creation together to unit once more in praising the Lord: mountains and hills, streams and rivers, seas and lands and all that inhabit them, clouds and winds, rain and snow, all peoples of the earth, every class and race of people, and finally also the inhabitants of heaven, the angels and the saints (cf. Dan 3,57-90)... We are to unite ourselves through our liturgy to the eternal praise of God. “We”, here, refers not just to the consecrated religious who are called to give solemn praise to God, but to all Christian people. (St Benedicta of the Cross, Edith Stein, OCD) 

The picture represents interior of the Parish Church in Oberammegau, Bavaria. Oberammegau is the only place holding Papal license to stage the Christ Passion Play every ten years since 17th century. The Mass on the picture was celebrated by Scottish Cardinal, Keith O'Brien (May, 2010)
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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Feast of Christ the King - click to read encyclical of Pope Pius XI 'Quas Primas' on the reign of Christ


The Feast of Christ the King was established by Pope Pius XI to celebrate the Jubilee Year and 16th centenary of the Council of Nicea. In his encyclical letter issued on this noble occasion on Decemebr 11, 1925, the Pope brings to our attention traditional and biblical sources confirming the sovereignty of Our Lord Jesus Christ. He also explains the need for special liturgical celebration of the universal Church each year on the last Sunday of the liturgical year before the first Sunday of Advent.

“If to Christ our Lord is given all power in heaven and on earth; if all men, purchased by his precious blood, are by a new right subjected to his dominion; if this power embraces all men, it must be clear that not one of our faculties is exempt from his empire. He must reign in our minds, which should assent with perfect submission and firm belief to revealed truths and to the doctrines of Christ. He must reign in our wills, which should obey the laws and precepts of God. He must reign in our hearts, which should spurn natural desires and love God above all things, and cleave to him alone. He must reign in our bodies and in our members, which should serve as instruments for the interior sanctification of our souls, or to use the words of the Apostle Paul, as instruments of justice unto God.[35] If all these truths are presented to the faithful for their consideration, they will prove a powerful incentive to perfection.” Pope Pius XI – Quas Primas


Let us adore Our Lord with Carmelite Saints:

Long live Christ the King!
(Blessed Teresa of the Child Jesus of Guadalajara Carmel, martyred in 1936)

"You, my God, are an eternal King, and Yours is no borrowed kingdom...When the Credo says: 'of Your Kingdom there shall be no end' this phrase nearly always makes me feel particularly happy. Yes, I praise You, Lord, and bless You, for Your Kingdom will endure forever" (St Teresa of Jesus, Way of Perfection, ch 22)

"I Shall Stay with You...."
Your throne is at the Lord's right hand,
Within the realm of His eternal glory,
God's word from when the world began.

You reign upon the highest throne of all,
Even in transfigured form,
Since You fulfilled Your task on earth.

So I believe, because Your word has taught me,
And, thus believing, know that this delights me,
And blessed hope blooms out of it.
For where you are, there also Your dear ones.
And Heaven is my glorious fatherland,
With You I share the Father's throne.
The Eternal One, creator of all being,
Who, holy thrice, encompasses
Retains a quiet realm all to Himself,

The inmost chamber of the human soul
Is favourite dwelling to the Trinity,
His heavenly throne right here on earth.
To free this heaven'ly realm from the hostile hand,
God's Son descended as the Son of Man
He gave His blood as ransom.

Within the heart of Jesus pierced with lances,
The realms of Heaven and earth become united.
And here we find the spring of life itself.

This is the heart of Trinity divine,
The center also of all human hearts.
Source of our life from God.

It draws us close with its mysterious might,
It keeps us safe within the Father's lap
And floods us with the Holy Spirit.

This heart beats in a tiny tabernacle
Where it remains in hidden mystery,
Within that orbit, silent, white.

That is Your royal throne, O Lord, on earth,
Which You have built for us, plainly to see,
It pleases You when we draw near....

Each morn You come to me at early Mass,
Your flesh and blood become my food and drink;
And wonders are accomplished...

How wondrous are the marvels of Your love,
We are amazed, we stammer and grow dumb,
For word and spirit fails us.
(St Benedicta of the Cross "Selected Works") 


Prayer (St Raphael Kalinowski (1835-1907)
Jesus, hope of suffering humanity, our refuge and our strength, whose light pierces the black cloud that hang over our stormy sea, enlighten our eyes so that we can direct ourselves toward You Who are our harbour. Guide our bark with the rudder of the nails of Your cross, lest we drown in the storm. With the arms of this cross rescue us from the turbulent waters and draw us to Yourself, our only repose, Morning Star, Sun of Justice, for with our eyes obscured by tears, we can catch a glimpse of You there, on the shores of our heavenly homeland. redeemed by You, we pray: Salvos nos fac propter nomen tuum - "Save us for the sake of Your holy name." And all this through Mary.
("Saint Raphael Kalinowski: An Introduction to His Life and Spirituality")
 
Picture represents 18th century Cuzco, Peru, art school - "Triumph of Christ the King over four continents" original in the Brooklyn Museum NY.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Temple


 
For a long time Carmel had been planning widespread honours for you, and in its happy caves it trains sons who in white cloaks will witness to perpetual chastity for you and will bind your name with the name of this Mount in everlasting covenant. You are purer than gold. You are whiter than snow. Your are brighter than the star of Venus. Your virginity was not vitiated by child-bearing, nor can your brightness be darkened by any stain. You certainly were not bound to this legitimate custom, and in all justice you could have renounced these gifts. Time will come when a future age will remember us and on this solemn day will offer you honour on the altars, and will carry candles in long procession of a well celebrated liturgy. Then your priest, processing in golden vestments, will chant your hymns and will sent forth a sweet smelling cloud throughout the Church and the breeze will spread the pleasant scent far and wide, and because our path cross at his point, posterity will call this day Hypante, in the Greek language, and it will be lit up with numberless torches. (Bl Baptiste Spagnoli of Mantua O.Carm)
 

Religious parents never fail by devout prayer to consecrate their children to God, His divine service and love, both before and after their birth. Some among the Jews, not content with this general consecration of their children, offered them to God in their infancy, by the hands of the priests in the Temple, to be brought up in quarters attached to the Temple, attending the priests and Levites in their sacred ministry. There were special divisions in these lodgings for the women and children dedicated to the divine service (3 Kings 6:5-9). We have examples of this special consecration of children in the person of Samuel, for example. Today the Church celebrates the feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Temple of Jerusalem. It is very probable that the holy prophet Simeon and the prophetess Anna, who witnessed the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple, as we read in the second chapter of the Gospel of Saint Luke (verses 25) had known His Mother as a little girl in the Temple and observed her truly unique sanctity. It is an ancient and very trustworthy tradition that the Blessed Virgin was thus solemnly offered in the Temple to God at the age of three by Her parents, Saint Anne and Saint Joachim. The Gospel tells us nothing of the childhood of Mary; Her title Mother of God, eclipses all the rest. Where, better than in the Temple, could Mary be prepared for Her mission? Twelve years of recollection and prayer, contemplation and sufferings, were the preparation of the chosen one of God. The tender soul of Mary was adorned with the most precious graces and became an object of astonishment and praise for the holy Angels, as well as of the highest complacency for the adorable Trinity. The Father looked upon her as His beloved Daughter, the Son as One set apart and prepared to become His Mother, and the Holy Ghost as His undefiled Spouse. Here is how Mary’s day in the Temple was apportioned, according to Saint Jerome. From dawn until nine in the morning, she prayed; from 9:00 until 3:00 she applied herself to manual work; then she turned again to prayer. She was always the first to undertake night watches, the one most applied to study, the most fervent in the chanting of Psalms, the most zealous in works of charity, the purest among the virgins, her companions, the most perfect in the practice of every virtue. On this day she appears as the standard-bearer for Christian virginity: after her will come countless legions of virgins consecrated to the Lord, both in the shadow of the altars or engaged in the charitable occupations of the Church in the world. Mary will be their eternal Model, their dedicated Patroness, their sure guide on the paths of perfection.

Main text after 'Little Pictorial Lives of the Saints' a compilation based on Butler’s Lives of the Saints.





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Friday, November 02, 2012

All Souls Day

"Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom....Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise" (Lk 23: 42-43) 

I feel it, we must go to heaven by the same route, the one of suffering united with love. When I reach the harbour, I will teach you....how to navigate on the stormy sea of the world, with the abandon and love of a child who knows that his Father cherishes him and would not leave him alone in a time of danger (St Therese, Letters)
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Monday, September 24, 2012

Novena Rose Prayer to St Therese - starts today! click for link


Novena Rose Prayer

O Little Therese of the Child Jesus, please pick for me a rose from the heavenly gardens and send it to me as a message of love.

O Little Flower of Jesus, ask God today to grant the favors I now place with confidence in your hands...(mention petitions)

St. Therese, help me to always believe as you did, in God's great love for me, so that I might imitate your "Little Way" each day. Amen.

credit to Carmelite Sisters of the Divine Heart of Jesus, Manchester, St Louis



Be fervent therefore in thy spiritual progress, for thou shortly receive the reward of thy labours; and then grief and fear shall no more come near thee....If thou continuest faithful and fervent in working, God will doubtless be faithful and liberal in rewarding. (Immitation, Book1))

She had unusual courage. From the time she entered Carmel at the age of fifteen she kept the Rule, apart from fasting, in all its rigour....But the Saint's maxim was not to give way or complain until she had reached the limit of her strength. Many a time she went to Matins feeling giddy, or with severe headache. "I am still able to walk," she would say, "so I ought to be at my duties." Her energy gave her the strength to perform these heroic acts quite simply. (Story of the soul)

Thou imparted on them much consolation, to support them in their many troubles; and Thou liftest them up from the depth of their own dejection, to the hope of Thy protection; and Thou dost re-create and enlighten them interiorly with a new grace. Thou art pleased to deal with Thy elect, to the end that they may truly acknowledged and plainly experience how great is their infirmity when left to themselves, and how much they receive from Thy bounty and grace. (Imitation B4)

I received the veil on September 24th, a day all veiled in tears. My father was too ill to come and bless his queen; at the last moment Mgr Hugonin was prevented from performing the ceremony, and several circumstances combined to make it a sad and depressing day. Yet there was peace in my cup of sorrow. Our Lord willed that i should not be able to keep my tears....and they were misunderstood. I had been through much greater trials before, dry-eyed, with the help of grace, but this time I was left to my own resources, and proved how weak they were. (Story of the Soul)

Grant that I may rest in Thee above all things desired, and that my heart may be at peace in Thee.Thou art the true peace of the heart, Thou art its only resr; outside of Thee all things are hard and uneasy (Imitation B3)

Oh! would that all this world doth hold
Might, as the ebbing tide,
Depart from me! I need it not,
For Thou art at my side.
If Thou shouldst leave me, Lord, and hide
Thy face from me awhile,
My song of love shall not be stilled,
Nor lips forbear to smile.  (Poems)

Son, thou must diligently make it thy aim that in every place, and in every action or outward employment, thou must be inwardly free and master of thyself; and that all things be under thee, and not thou under them. That thou mayest be lord and ruler of thy actions, not a slave or bondsman, but rather a freeman and a true Hebrew, transferred to the lot and to the liberty of the children of God. Who stand above the things of the children of God. Who stand above the things present and contemplate those that are eternal: who look upon passing things with the left eye, and with the right those of heaven. (Imitation B3)

We read that in the old days the Jews rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem holding a sword in one hand as they worked with the other (2 Esdras 4:17). That is a figure of what we should do: work hard with one hand and with other ward off dissipation of mind, which would hinder our union with God (Conseils et Souvenirs).

Let me be possessed by love, going above myself through excess of fervour and ecstasy. Let me sing the canticle of love and follow Thee, my Beloved, on high; let my soul lose herself in Thy praises, rejoicing exceedingly in Thy love (Imitation B3)

Made ready by this martyrdom to come before Thee, may it at length cause my death and suffer my soul to pass into the eternal embrace of Thy merciful love. I wish to renew this offering, O my Beloved, an infinite number of times at every heart-beat, until the shadows flee away and I may tell Thee of my love face to face for all eternity (Act of Oblation)

I do not regret having offered myself up as a victim of Love (Novissima Verba)


My God...I love Thee! (Her last words)


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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The Holy Name of Mary


…the angel Gabriel was sent from God into a city of Galilee, called Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David: and the virgin's name was Mary. And the angel being come in, said unto her: Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. Who having heard, was troubled at his saying and thought with herself what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said to her: Fear not, Mary, for thou hast found grace with God. (Luke 1:26) 

 Fain would I sing, O Mother blest! the reasons why I love thee; 
 Why e’en to name thy name, with joy, O Mary! fills my heart; 
And why the glorious thoughts of thee, in greatness far above me, inspire no fear within my soul, so dear and sweet thou art. 
Yet, if I were to see thee now, in majesty stupendous, 
Surpassing all the crowned saints in highest heaven above, 
Scarce could I dream I am thy child, (O truth sublime tremendous!), 
 For I should think myself to be unworthy of thy love. 
 The mother, who desires to be her child’s best earthly treasure, 
Must ever share its grief with it, must understand its pain.
From 'Why I love thee of Mary' (Last poem of St Terese)

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

O Mary, kind Mother! be for us the way that leads to your Son... (Latin Liturgy)


My spirit rejoices in God my Saviour, for he has looked with favour on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed" (Luke 1:47-48) 
The Blessed Virgin was also watching over her little flower. Not wanting her to be tarnished by contact with earthly things, she moved her to her mountain before she bloomed...While wanting for this happy moment, the little Therese grew in love for the Heavenly Mother (St Therese, The Story of a Soul) 

Picture represents Rubens' masterpiece 'Assumption'
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Thursday, August 09, 2012

Feast of St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross


O Prince of Peace, to all who receive You, You bring light and peace. Help me to live in daily contact with You, listening to the words You have spoken and obeying them. O Divine Child, I place my hands in Yours, I shall follow You. Oh, let Your divine life flow into me. (St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, Carmelite  Meditation)
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Monday, August 06, 2012


He was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became dazzling white (Mt 17:2) 

Your Face is my only wealth, I ask for nothing more. By continously hiding myself in it, I will look like you, Jesus. Leave in me the Divine imprint of your Features, filled with kindness. And soon, I will become a saint, and to you, I will draw hearts (St Therese, Poems)
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Friday, June 15, 2012

Feast of the Most Sacred Heart


  O Jesus, how little known is the mercuful love of Your Heart!
(St Therese)
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Sunday, June 03, 2012

Feast of the Most Holy Trinity




O Incomprehensible God, Your greatness is eternal, and your goodness ineffable. I see the three divine Persons flowing one into another in an indescribable, inscrutable way, and I rejoice in this sight. The Father flows into the Son, the Son into the Father, and the Father and the Son flow into the Holy Spirit. Eternal God, You are unspeakably good, You who, out of goodness, communicate to a creature, aware of its nothingness, some knowledge of Your eternal Being; but although this communication is wonderful, it might be called in all truth, a mere nothing, in comparison with what You really are. (St Mary Magdalen dei Pazzi) 

text from 'Divine Intimacy' mediatations  

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Friday, June 01, 2012

Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary


Blessed be God. 
Blessed be His holy name. 
Blessed be Jesus Christ, true God and true man. 
Blessed be the name of Jesus. 
Blessed be His most Sacred Heart. 
Blessed be His most Precious Blood. 
Blessed be Jesus in the most holy sacrament of the altar. 
Blessed be the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete. 
Blessed be the great Mother of God, Mary most holy. 
Blessed be her holy and Immaculate Conception. 
Blessed be her glorious Assumption. 
Blessed be the name of Mary, virgin and Mother. 
Blessed be Saint Joseph, her most chaste spouse. 
Blessed be God in His angels and in His saints. 
Amen. (Divine Praises)
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Sunday, May 27, 2012

Pentecost


'O consuming Fire, Spirit of Love! Come down into me and reproduce in me, as it were, an incarnation of the Word; that I may be to Him an added humanity, wherein He may renew all His mystery!' (St Elizabeth of the Trinity)
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Thursday, May 17, 2012

THE ASCENSION OF OUR LORD

PRESENCE OF GOD - O Jesus, who ascended into heaven, grant that I, too, may live there in spirit.

MEDITATION1. The central idea in the liturgy today is the raising of our hearts toward heaven, so that we may begin to dwell in spirit where Jesus has gone before us. "Christ's Ascension" says St Leo, "is our own ascension; our body has the hope of one day being where its glorious Head has preceded it" (RB). In fact, Our Lord had already said in His discourse after the Last Supper, "I go to prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to Myself; that where I am, you also may be" (Jn 14:2,3). The Ascension is, then, a feast of joyful hope, a sweet foretaste of heaven. By going before us, Jesus our Head has given us the right to follow Him there some day, and we can even say with St Leo, "In the person of Christ, we have penetrated the heights of heaven" (RB). As in Christ Crucified we die to sin, as in the risen Christ we rise to the life of grace, so too, we are raised up to heaven in the Ascension of Christ. This vital participation in Christ's mysteries is the essential consequences of our incorporation in Him. He is our Head; we, as His members, are totally dependent upon Him and intimately bound to His destiny. "God, who is rich in mercy," says St Paul, "for His exceeding charity wherewith He loved us...hath quickened us together in Christ..., and hath raised us up...and hath made us sit together in the heavenly places through Christ Jesus" (Eph 2:4-6). Our right to heaven has been given us, our place is ready; it is for us to live in such a way that we may occupy it some day. Meanwhile, we must actualize the beautiful prayer which the liturgy puts on our lips: "Grant, O almighty God, that we, too, may dwell in spirit in the heavenly mansions" (Collect)."Where thy treasure is, there is thy heart also" (Mt 6:21), Jesus said one day. If Jesus is really our treasure, our heart cannot be anywhere but near Him in heaven. This is the great hope of the Christian soul, so beautifully expressed in the hymn of Vespers: "O Jesus, be the hope of our hearts, our joy in sorrow, the sweet fruit of our life" (RB).

2. Besides the hope and the joyful expectancy of heaven so characteristic of the Ascension feast there is a note of melancholy. Before the final departure of Jesus, the Apostles must have been very much disturbed: each felt the distress of one who sees his dearest friend and companion going away forever, and finds himself alone to face all the difficulties of life. The Lord realized their state of mind and consloed them once more, promising the coming of the Holy Spirit, the Comforter: "He commanded them," we read in the Epistle (Acts 1:1-11), "that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but should wait for the promise of the Father....you shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost, not many days hence." but even this time the Apostles did not understand! How much they neede to be enlightened and transformed by the Holy Spirit, in order to accomplish the great mission which was to be entrusted to them! Jesus continued: which was to be entrusted to them! Jesus continued : "You shall receive the power of the Holy Ghost coming upon you and you shall be witnesses unto Me...even to the uttermost part of the earth". For the moment, however, they were there, around the Master, weak, timid, frightened, like little children watching their mother leave for a distant, unknown land. In fact, "while they looked on, He was raised up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight." Two angels came to distract them from their great amazement and to make them realize what had happened. Then, placing their trust in the word of Jesus, which would henceforth be their only support, they returned to Jerusalem where, in the Cenacle, they awaited in prayer the fulfillment of the promise. It was the first novena in preparation for Pentecost: "All these were persevering with one mind in prayer with...Mary, the Mother of Jesus" (ibid 1:14).
Silence, recollection, prayer, peace with our brethren, and union with Mary: these are the characteristics of the novena we too should make in preaparation for the coming of the Holy Spirit.

COLLOQUY
..."Ah! my works are poor, my God, even if I could perform many! Then why should I remain in this life, so full of misery? Only to do Your will. Could I do anything better than that? Hope, therefore, my soul, hope. Watch carefully, for you know not the day nor the hour. Everything passes quickly, even though your desire makes you struggle, the greater the proofs of love you will be giving to your God, and afterwards the more you will enjoy your Beloved in happiness and felicity without end" (T.J. Exc., 15). 


Text after 'Divine Intimacy' - Ven Gabriel of St Mary Magdalen, OCD
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Sunday, May 13, 2012

May 13 - First Apparition in Fatima, 1917


I Am from Heaven -
"...In the Cova da Iria....we saw what seemed to be a flash of lightning. (...) There before us on a small oak tree, we beheld a Lady all dressed in white. She was more brilliant than a crystal glass filled with sparkling water, when the rays of the burning sun shine through it. ... 'Do not be afraid. I will do you no harm. (...) I am from heaven. (...) I am here to ask you to come here for six months in succession, on the 13th day, at this same hour. Later on, I will tell you who I am and what I want. Afterwards, I will return here yet a seventh time.' (...) 'Will I go to heaven too?' 'Yes, you will.' 'And Jacinta?' 'She will go also.' 'And Francisco?' 'He will go there too, but he must say many Rosaries.' 'Are you willing to offer yourselves to God and bear all the sufferings He wills to send you, as an act of reparation for the sins by which He is offended, and as an act of supplication for the conversion of sinners?' (...)'Then you are going to have much to suffer, but the grace of God will be your comfort.' We fell on our knees, repeating in our hearts: 'O Most Holy Trinity, I adore You! My God, my God, I love You in the most Blessed Sacrament!' ... Our Lady spoke again: 'Pray the Rosary every day, in order to obtain peace for the world, and the end of the war.'" (Sister Lucia's description of the first apparition of Our Lady on May 13, 1917) 

Biographical note: 
Young Lucia (first on the right, picture above) entered the Institute of the Sisters of St. Dorothy as a postulant in the convent in Tuy,  Spain in 1924.  She made her first vows in 1928, and her perpetual vows in 1934, receiving the name Sister Maria das Dores (Mary of the Sorrows).  She returned to Portugal from Spain in 1946.  On her return she visited Fatima and in March 1948 after receiving special papal permission to be relieved of her perpetual vows, she entered the Carmelite convent of St. Teresa in Coimbra where she resided until her death. She made her profession as a Discalced Carmelite on May 31, 1949, taking the name Sister Maria LĂșcia of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart.

credit: main text after 'A Moment with Mary' 

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012


 "And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life." (Jn 3:15)


My Lord, God,
You have led me by a long, dark path,
Rocky and hard.
Often my strength threatened to fail me.
I almost lost all hope of seeing the light.
But when my heart grew numb with deepest grief,
A clear star rose for me.
Steadfast it guided me- I followed,
At first reluctant, but more confidently later.

At last I stood at Church's gate.
It opened. I sought admission.
From your priest's mouth Your blessing greets me.
Within me stars are strung like pearls.
Red blossom stars show me the path to You.
They wait for you at Holy Night.
But your goodness
Allows them to illuminate my path to You.
They lead me on.
The secret which I had to keep in hiding
Deep in my heart,
Now I can shout it out:
I believe, I profess!
The priest accompanies me to the altar:
I bend my face,
Holy water flows over my head.

Lord, is it possible that someone who is past
Midlife can be reborn (Jn 3:4)?
You said so, and for me it was fulfilled,
A long life's burden of guilt and suffering
Fell away from me.
Erect I receive the white cloak,
Which they place round my shoulders,
Radiant image of purity!
In my hand I hold a candle.
Its flame makes known
That deep within me glows your holy life.

My heart has become your manger,
Awaiting you,
But not for long!
Maria, your mother and also mine
Has given me her name.
At midnight she will place her newborn child
Into my heart.

Ah, no one's heart can fathom,
What you've in store for those who love you (1Cor 2:9).
Now you are mine, and I won't let you go.
Wherever my life's road may lead,
You are with me.
Nothing can ever part me from your love (Rm 8:39).
St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, 'Holy Night' Poem)

Text after DGO, picture represents 'Nicodemus seeks Jesus by night' by Alexander Bida




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Sunday, April 15, 2012

Low Sunday and Divine Mercy - invitation to spiritual childhood

Today, the newly baptized at the close of Easter week laid aside the white garment which they had received at the baptismal font. To them St Peter (1P2:2) addressed his affectionate recommendation: "As newborn babes, desire the pure spiritual milk". These words are also applied to us, cradle Catholics. Although we were baptised as infants, we can say that every Easter regenerates us in Christ by means of our spiritual resurrection in Him. Therefore, we also must be like "newborn babes", in whom there is no malice, deceit, pride and presumption, but only candour and simplicity, confidence and love. This is wonderful invitation to the spiritual childhood which Jesus told us is indispensable condition for attaining salvation: "Unless you be converted and became as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven" (Mt 18:3). Each wave of grace purifies and cleanses our soul from sin and its roots, giving us rebirth to a new life in Christ, a pure, innocent life, which craves only "the pure spiritual milk" of the doctrine of Christ, His love and His grace. In this spirit we can see connection between Traditional Low Sunday and Divine Mercy Sunday. It is a matter of conversion of heart.



"O Lord, grant me true purity and simplicity: in my looks, words, heart, intentions, works, and in all my interior and exterior acts. I should like to know, O Lord, what there is in me that impedes these virtues. I shall tell you, O my soul, since I cannot make anyone else understand. Do you know that the obstacle is the smallest glance that is not directed to God, and all the words that are not spoken in praise of Him or for the benefit of your neighbour. Do you know how you drive these virtues out of my heart? You banish them every time you fail to have the pure intentions of honouring God or helping your neighbour; you also expel them when you try to cover up and excuse your faults, forgetting that God sees everything, including your heart. O Lord, give me real purity and true simlicity, for You cannot find Your rest in a soul which is without them" (St Mary Magdalen de Pazzi).

Main text adopted from "Divine Intimacy" by Fr Gabriel of St Mary Magdalen, OCD 
The picture represents engraving of St Mary Magdalen de Pazzi.
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Saturday, March 10, 2012

The War of Vendee - a new Catholic movie by Navis Pictures, click for website

Perfect picture for Lent, great project, the movie is available now on dvd, all cast is by young Catholics. The movie features the epic story of resistance to insane terros and persecutions of Catholicism by French revolutionaries. The resistance, inspired by the preaching of St Louis de Monfort,  eventually won the end of Church persecution in France. This movie was made to honour the memory of those who decided to resist terror and fight for their religious freedom. If you would like to support this project and the future projects to come, you may buy this dvd.


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Monday, February 06, 2012


Now if, when Jesus went about in the world, the mere touch of his robes cured the sick, why doubt, if we have faith, that miracles will be worked while he is within us and that he will give what we ask of him since, in eucharistic communion, he is in our house? His Majesty is not accustomed to paying poorly for his lodging if the hospitality is good. If it pains you not to see him with your bodily eyes, con­sider that seeing him so is not fitting for us...

But our Lord reveals himself to those who he sees will benefit by his presence. Even though they fail to see him with their bodily eyes, he has many methods of showing himself to the soul, through great interior feelings and through other different ways. Be with him will­ingly; don't lose so good an occasion for conversing with him as is the hour after having received Communion. (St Teresa, The Way of Perfection)

Picture 'The Vision of St Teresa' by Alonso Cano, adopted from Idlle Speculation blog
Quotation after DGO


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Saturday, February 04, 2012

St Andrew Corsini, OCarm


"This Andrew was born at Florence, of the noble family of Corsini. His birth was a special answer to prayer, and his parents vowed him to the Blessed Virgin. God foreshewed even before his birth what he was to be. While his mother was great with child she dreamt that she brought forth a wolf, which ran to the Carmelite Church and was changed into a lamb as soon as it reached the porch. The boy was brought up in godliness and learning becoming his rank, but turned to bad courses ; whereupon his mother often rebuked him. Nevertheless, when he knew how his parents had vowed him to the Maiden Mother of God, the love of God touched his heart, and the vision of his mother moving him, he betook himself to the Institute of the Carmelites. In that place the devil exercised him with many and divers temptations, but could not break him off from his determination to profess as a friar. He was soon after sent to Paris, where he finished his studies at the University, and took his degree ; after which he returned to his own country, and was set over the houses of his order in Tuscany". From Breviary Lesson"

May this short biography of St Andrew Corsini  offers  hope and encouragement to pious mothers praying for their children.



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