Monday, November 2, 2009

All Souls Day +Prayer = Healing the Family Tree

Invigorated tonight by a magnificent morsel on the unfathomable mercy and generosity of Our Good and Gracious Lord, I headed over to bloggger to fill you all in... only to find that I had to pause for a moment to recall my username and password. Yes, it has been a long time.

Some of you may be familiar with the 'healing the family tree' ministries of certain Catholic priests - Father John Hampsch most notably comes to mind.
Well tonight I came across a priest's story which provides a beautiful visual of the miracles of healing the family tree.


Our Lord cleanses our families with His Most Precious blood, in answer to prayer on All Souls Day.


He never stops giving.

He never stops loving.

He never stops sacrificing Himself for the salvation of His Children.
Please say a prayer for the Holy Souls in Purgatory. Today and every day. Offer your rosary for them, have Masses said for them, or offer your Communion for all of those poor souls who cannot pray for themselves. Your spiritual generosity will not go unrewarded!


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Pray, Hope and Don't Worry


Pray, hope and don't worry....

St. Padre Pio


Happy Feast Day of St. Padre Pio!

Bilocation ...the gift of reading souls...fights with the devil..bearing the wounds of Christ...


Padre Pio's holy life was marked with extraordinary gifts of the Holy Spirit, an intense love of Jesus, the Eucharist and His Passion, and deep devotion to Our Lady. It is reported that St. Pio prayed up to 36 rosaries a day!
And I am so proud of myself when I do one. *sigh* That is why we venerate this remarkable saint - we all have much to learn from his holy example.

So for all of those in need of a miracle, today is your day. Ask wonderful Padre Pio, trust in the mercy and goodness of God and don't worry.

Prayer for the Intercession of St. Pio of Pietrelcina


Dear God, You generously blessed Your servant, St. Pio of Pietrelcina, with the gifts of the Spirit. You marked his body with the five wounds of Christ Crucified, as a powerful witness to the saving Passion and Death of Your Son. Endowed with the gift of discernment, St. Pio labored endlessly in the confessional for the salvation of souls. With reverence and intense devotion in the celebration of Mass, he invited countless men and women to a greater union with Jesus Christ in the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist.Through the intercession of St. Pio of Pietrelcina, I confidently beseech You to grant me the grace of (here state your petition). Amen.


Glory be to the Father... (three times).



Efficacious Novena To The Sacred Heart Of Jesus (This novena prayer was recited every day by Padre Pio for all those who asked his prayers)


O my Jesus, You have said, ‘Truly I say to you, ask and it will be given you, seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you.’ Behold, I knock, I seek and ask for the grace of...Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory be to the Father... Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in you.II. O my Jesus, You have said, ‘Truly I say to you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, He will give it to you.’ Behold, in Your name, I ask the Father for the grace of...Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory be to the Father... Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in you.III. O my Jesus, You have said, ‘Truly I say to you, heaven and earth will pass away but my words will not pass away.’ Encouraged by Your infallible words, I now ask for the grace of...Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory be to the Father... Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in you.O Sacred Heart of Jesus, for whom it is impossible not to have compassion on the afflicted, have pity on us poor sinners and grant us the grace which we ask of You, through the Sorrowful and Immaculate heart of Mary, Your tender mother and ours.


Hail, Holy Queen... St. Joseph, foster father of Jesus, pray for us


Amen.



More devotions to Padre Pio can be found here.

Friday, September 11, 2009

How to Pray The Rosary of the Seven Sorrows

An ancient prayer is making its way back into the mainstream, and serious prayer warriors everywhere are adding it prominently to their arsenals.

I had heard this prayer was powerful, it was not until I started praying it myself that I realized just how special it is. It is called the Rosary of the Seven Sorrows, the Seven Dolors of Mary Chaplet, or the Servite Rosary.


Lots of promises attached to this one. I'll list them following an explanation of the prayer. These rosaries are not as widely available as the standard five decade version, but there is a place online to purchase a seven sorrows rosary here. This site is an outstanding resource - it has a booklet explaining the rosary in detail, a CD to accompany your prayers and a book explaining the approved 20th century apparition where Our Lady specifically requested this prayer. Awesome!


There are seven mysteries, followed by seven small beads ( called weeks in stead of decades)


The prayer goes like this:


1) Act of Contrition

2) Announce the First Sorrow. Our Father... then pray Seven Hail Marys while meditating on the Sorrow

3) Announce each respective Sorrow, pray the Our Father, then pray Seven Hail Marys while meditating on the Sorrow.

4) Finish with three Hail Marys for the Tears of the Blessed Virgin Mary,

5) Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be for the intentions of the Holy Father

6) Final prayer is: ' Virgin Most Sorrowful, Pray for Us' three times.


The Seven Sorrows of Our Lady, with thanks to TheGrotto.org


The First Sorrow


The Holy Prophecy of Simeon: The Blessed Virgin, filled with joy, presented her only son in the temple. How her heart must have broken to hear the prophetic words of Simeon as he foretold the suffering of the Savior and His mother.


The Second Sorrow


The Flight of the Holy Family into Egypt: On a moments notice, St. Joseph and the Blessed Virgin must take the Infant Jesus on a perilous journey to evade Herod's men who hunted Him. They endured cold, hunger and many hardships as they made their way to a foreign land.


The Third Sorrow


Mary seeks Jesus lost in Jerusalem: The Virgin Mary understands firsthand the profound sorrow of losing a child. For three agonizing days St. Joseph and the Blessed Mother searched for twelve-year-old Jesus, before finding Him among the scholars in the temple.


The Fourth Sorrow


Mary meets Jesus on the way to Calvary: Jesus, battered and condemned to crucifixion, meets His mother, on the road to Calvary. He is beaten and indescribably defiled; her sorrow is absolute as Jesus drags the cross on which He will be crucified.


The Fifth Sorrow


Mary stands at the foot of the cross: Mary stands near her dying Son, unable to minister to him as he cries "I thirst". She hears him promise heaven to a thief and forgive his enemies. His last words, "Behold your mother," a gift for all of mankind, as His Beloved Mother becomes Mother of All Peoples.


The Sixth Sorrow


Mary holds the body of Jesus: The Pieta. The passion and death are complete, but for Our Lady, grief continues. She holds His body in her arms. Meditate on her tears.


The Seventh Sorrow


Mary places the body of Jesus in the tomb: The sun goes down on the most tragic day in history. As she awaits in faith the resurrection of her Son, Mary alone in sorrow, lays the body of her Son in the tomb.


The Promises with thanks to MotherofAllPeoples.org and piercedhearts.org


According to the visions of St. Bridget of Sweden (1303-1373) our Blessed Mother promises to grant seven graces to those who honor her and draw near to her and her Son every day by meditating on her dolors (sorrows) and entering into her grief.


  • "I will grant peace to their families."

  • "They will be enlightened about the divine Mysteries."

  • "I will console them in their pains and will accompany them in their work."

  • "I will give them as much as they ask for as long as it does not oppose the adorable will of my divine Son or the sanctification of their souls."

  • "I will defend them in their spiritual battles with the infernal enemy and I will protect them at every instant of their lives."

  • "I will visibly help them at the moment of their death-- they will see the face of their mother."

  • "I have obtained this grace from my divine Son, that those who propagate this devotion to my tears and dolors will be taken directly from this earthly life to eternal happiness, since all their sins will be forgiven and my Son will be their eternal consolation and joy."


St. Alphonsus Liguori testifies to complementary revelations given by Our Lord to St. Elizabeth of Hungary (1207-1231) where He further promises four special graces to those dedicated to the sufferings of the co-redeeming Mother:



  • 1. That those who before death invoke the Blessed Mother in the name of her sorrows, should obtain true repentance of all their sins.

  • 2. That He would protect in their tribulations all who remember this devotion, and that He would protect them especially at the hour of death.

  • 3. That He would impress upon their minds the remembrance of His Passion, and that they should have their reward for it in Heaven.

  • 4. That He would commit such devout clients to the hands of Mary, so that she might obtain for these souls all the graces she wanted to lavish upon them.


It is hard to describe the peace I feel when I pray this rosary.
Please, Lord, let your peace remain with us always. And on this the anniversary of 9/11, I offer a heartfelt plea for my country. We need you and Your Mother today more than ever. Please help us end abortion, stop socialism, and turn our eyes always toward You.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Happy Birthday to the Blessed Virgin Mary


A Very Happy Birthday to Our Lady!


Thank you for your YES to God.


And I thank Him for the gift of you.


Love, HappytoBeCatholic


PS apologies for my absence to everyone. I have much to post, but life has been really hectic lately. Tomorrow!!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Novena of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Today we begin a novena honoring the Nativity of Our Lady, celebrated on September 8th. More thoughts on that tomorrow. Novena follows. Enjoy!


Novena for the Nativity of Our Lady


The prayer of each day is preceded by the following:
V. O God, come to my assistance

R. O Lord, make haste to help me

V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit

R. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.


First Day: Heavenly Child, lovable Mary, the Eternal Father delights in your birth, for He beholds in your coming into this world one of His creatures who is so perfect that she will become the worthy Mother of His divine Son. May your birth give joy to my soul also, by obtaining for me from the heavenly Father, the pardon of my sins, and an abiding sorrow for them.
Hail Mary...


Second Day: O Chosen One among the daughters of Adam, admirable Mary, the Son of God delights in your birth, for He beholds the one chosen to be His Mother, and oh! such a beloved Mother. May your birth give joy to my soul also, by obtaining from your divine Son the grace to be born again spiritually to a holy life, perfectly conformed to yours, so that I may merit to obtain eternal glory.
Hail Mary...


Third Day: O Chosen One among the daughters of Adam, lovable Mary, the Eternal Word takes delight in your birth, for He sees the source of His Immaculate Blood. May your birth give joy to my soul also, by obtaining for me from the Word made Flesh, the grace to find in this Divine Blood the eternal happiness of my soul.
Hail Mary...


Fourth Day: O Chosen One among the daughters of Adam, admirable Mary, the Redeemer, promised to mankind from the beginning of the world, takes delight in your birth, for He sees the one who is destined to become the co-redemptrix of souls by uniting her tears to the Blood shed on the Cross to save mankind.
Hail Mary...


Fifth Day: Resplendent Lily of Paradise, lovable Mary, the Holy Spirit takes delight in your birth for He sees in you the soul never stained by sin, which would forever be His worthy Temple. May your birth give joy to my soul also, by obtaining for me from the Holy Spirit His divine love and final perseverance.
Hail Mary...


Sixth Day: Most Beautiful Branch of the tree of David, most admirable Mary, whose birth was such a consolation to St. Joachim and St. Anne who were delighted to be the parents of so holy a child, may your birth be the consolation of my soul, by obtaining for me from God, victory over the world and detachment from all the things of this earth.
Hail Mary...


Seventh Day: Resplendent Morning Star, lovable Mary, your birth was the cause of great joy to the angels, for they beheld in you the Mother of the Redeemer of the world, who by His Death would repair the loss sustained by the fall of rebellions angels in paradise. May your birth give joy to my soul also, by obtaining for me from God, victory over the infernal enemy, deliverance from all his snares, and the grace to be associated in glory with the angels in heaven.
Hail Mary...


Eighth Day: Brilliant Aurora of Heaven, lovable Mary, your birth brought great consolation to the souls of the saints detained in limbo, for it announced the approach of the Sun of Justice, Jesus Christ, who would enlighten their darkness and then conduct them to paradise. May your birth give joy to my soul also, and obtain for me from God, patience in all adversities, a perfect and constant conformity to His most holy will.
Hail Mary...


Ninth Day: Mediatrix between God and mankind, admirable Mary, by your birth you perfected the joy of all the children of Adam, who, through you, have received the Author of Grace, for He has made you the treasurer of all the graces which are imparted to us. May your birth be a special cause of joy to my soul by obtaining for me from God, eternal salvation and all the graces necessary to obtain it.
Hail Mary...


The prayer of each day is ended by the following:


Antiphon: Your Nativity, O Virgin Mother of God, was the herald of joy to the whole world; since from you arose the Sun of Justice, Christ our God, who, destroying the curse, bestowed the blessing, and confounding death, rewarded us with life everlasting.
V. Let us celebrate with joy the birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary.R. That she may intercede for us with Our Lord Jesus Christ.


Let us pray


Grant to us your servants, we beseech you, O Lord, the gift of Your heavenly grace, that as our salvation was begun in the child-bearing of the Blessed Virgin, so from this solemn festival of her Nativity may we obtain an increase of peace. Through Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.



Nihil Obstat: Iacobus P. King, I.C.D. Censor Deputatus. Imprimatur: Bryan Iosephus McEntegart, D.D., LL.D. Episcopus Bruklyniensis.

Friday, August 28, 2009

A Tale of Three Mothers

I am an adoptive parent. I recently stopped at a local parish to request Masses for the biological mothers of my children. I am concerned for them always, but have reason to believe that my son’s mother is very much in need of prayer at the moment.

I entered the parish office to request the Masses.


“Do you need them yet this year?” the woman behind the desk inquired.

“No, no.” I said, not wanting to be pushy. “The Masses can be said whenever it works for you.”

“Oh, great.” she said, grabbing her Mass schedule and flipping through pages. “Let me see when the next available Mass is... how does Oct. 24th* work?” she asked.

“Great,” I said, and began filling out a paper with the spelling of my son’s biological mother’s name. As I handed her the paper, I peered down over the counter at the scheduling book. I noticed that she had actually scheduled the Mass for the following date, October 25th.

“The 25th?!” I blurted out without thinking. The lady behind the desk looked up, startled.

“What? Oh my goodness,” she laughed. “I don’t know why I did that. I had my pencil on the 24th and it just moved down there to the 25th."

She looked up at me again and saw that tears we were welling in my eyes. “ Do you want me to change it? I can move it to the 24th.”

“No,” I said, smiling. “That day is perfect." I paused for a moment, then decided to explain. "This Mass intention is for my son's biological mother. The 25th is his birthday.”

She gasped, then rubbed her arm and showed me her goosebumps. I smiled, thanked her and headed toward the tabernacle to say thank you to Our Lord.

Before I entered, I waved to the statue of Our Lady, still blinking back tears.

"Thank you, Mother" I whispered, and I meant it with all my heart.

She is so good.


* date changed to protect the identity of those involved

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Thoughts on the Assumption of Our Lady

Meditating on the Assumption pushes my brain to its limit – I know the joy in Heaven must have been indescribable but I simply cannot fathom what it was like for Our Lady to first behold the beatific vision. To meet the Father for the first time. To see her Divine Son again, in all of His heavenly majesty. To fully understand her role in the salvation of its world. To see St. Joseph ; that the two of them might wonder in all of their humility and obedience the greatness of God that He bestowed upon them such extraordinary dignity. To have choirs of angels welcoming Our Lady into Paradise. *sigh* Oh, to have been a mouse in the corner. What a glorious day it must have been!

But it was when I learned the Franciscan Crown Rosary, a prayer celebrating the joys of Our Lady, that I found something else to ponder about the Assumption.

According to one Franciscan Order, the Blessed Virgin Mary was seventy-two years old when she was assumed into Heaven. Estimating that she was fourteen when she gave birth to Jesus, she would have been forty-seven when He died. That leaves twenty-five years for her on Earth without her beloved Son. Despite her joy in His victory, the Resurrection and Ascension into Heaven, it must have been incredibly painful for her to be separated from Him.

Certainly she had the company of some of the Apostles, and friends. I am sure she knew that she would see her Divine Son again one day, but we humans often need a tangible presence for comfort.

I would assume that Our Lady may have been given special consolation at times, visits from her Son or the holy angels. But maybe not. Maybe her solitary presence on Earth was part of a bigger plan.

Because she was given twenty-five years to further contemplate the mysteries of God, Our Lady must have prayed often for the salvation of her Son’s beloved children. She knew what was in store for the faithful, and she knew the desolation that befell those who rejected God.
And one tear from the spotless, sinless Virgin means more in Heaven than we can possibly imagine. How often did Our Lady plead lovingly through tears with the Father for mankind, many of whom she saw living sinful lives, oblivious or indifferent to her Son who sacrificed all while she, the Mother of God, remained, sinless, on Earth?

Perhaps those twenty-five years she spent on Earth were yet another facet of her martyrdom. She undoubtedly offered her own agony to the Father as she watched her Son suffer on the Cross. Did she offer the sorrow of being separated from her Son to the Father for the sake of mankind? I suspect so.

And such an offering from the humble Virgin would have made her Assumption into Heaven all the more glorious.

Thank you so much to Our Lord and Our Lady for this beautiful Feast Day. Please check out this prayer in honor of this extraordinary day.


PS A worldwide five-decade rosary will be prayed tomorrow in honor of the Assumption. US Times – 11 a.m. Eastern, 10 a.m. Central, 9 Mountain and 8 a.m. Pacific. More details here.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Price of Beauty

Pop singer Jessica Simpson is set to return to reality TV this fall in a series entitled The Price of Beauty. According to a network press release Ms. Simpson will travel the world to “"to meet women, study local fashions, dietary fads and beauty regimes…” tracking the global quest for beauty, and showcasing the extreme measures some women will go to make themselves feel youthful and pretty.

I thought extreme measures would be along the lines of stars like Demi Moore going to a clinic in Austria where leeches are applied to her skin( following a turpentine bath, naturally), to detoxify the blood.

Unfortunately Moore’s leeches are on the sane end of the spectrum. Turns out women around the world are headed to far off lands for a downright evil beauty treatment which alleges to turn back the clock. As a forty-something woman myself, I’m all for anti-aging breakthroughs; however, you won’t catch me near this one with a fifty foot pole.

Why not? The ‘beauty breakthrough’ consists of facial injections comprised of stem cells harvested from aborted babies. Sadly, there is a market for this:

“…Women like Susan Barrington, a 52-year-old housewife from England, are heading to places such as Barbados, the Dominican Republic, Moscow and Rotterdam to obtain the treatments.

She has been given the final go-ahead form (sic) a local clinic to travel abroad for the treatment that promises to make her look 10 years younger and doesn't mind that lives have been sacrificed to enhance her beauty.

To produce the treatments, clinics are using tissue from babies killed in abortions from 6 to 12 weeks into pregnancy and stem cells obtained from destroying human embryos to inject into a client's face. The fetal cells then begin a supposed rejuvenation process that makes the skin look younger…”

A sickening twist makes the story even more unsettling:

“To obtain the cells, women in underdeveloped nations are paid up to $200 dollars to carry a baby up to the optimum eight to 12 week period when the fetuses are “harvested” for their stem cells which are then sold to exclusive cosmetic clinics….”

Use of the new product is unregulated with the target market being wealthy British and American tourists. In Moscow alone more than fifty clinics are offering the injections.
Hopefully if Jessica Simpson stumbles across this abomination she will not showcase it in anything other than the unflattering light of Truth. In this case, the price of beauty is the life of a child. If that isn’t too high, I don’t know what is.

Thank you, St. Dominic

Years ago, Our Lady gave the world the greatest weapon against evil through the saint whose feast we celebrate today. Speaking from experience, I promise you this: If you pick it up, and use it as instructed, evildoers in this world and the next don't stand a chance.



Thursday, August 6, 2009

My Favorite Miracle

One of my favorite bloggers, Michael over at Reach Paradise, recently mused about the miracle of the loaves and fishes, then posed this question: If you could have witnessed one of Our Lord's miracles, what would it have been?

This sent me over the edge because that just happens to be a happy pastime of mine - sometimes when I pray the rosary I get lost thinking about what it must have been like to be there for the Annunciation, or the Nativity or the Resurrection or to have even walked past Jesus when he was out and about.

Today we celebrate the Feast of the Transfiguration, where Jesus revealed himself in all of his splendor to Peter, James and John. Now Michael, that would have been something to see!

The best thing is that this is a miracle that seems within reach. Maybe it won't be on Mount Tabor - but I pray one day I too will see my Lord in all of His splendor.

He suffered and died so that He might welcome my sinful self into His Kingdom. On the cross, He made His Mother my Mother. He loves me and He forgives me. And Michael, that is my favorite miracle of all!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Jeff Kuhner: Voice of Truth

No, it is not your imagination. There really is an anti-Catholic bias in much of the media.

Thankfully there is a rising star among their ranks who is bold, brilliant and unabashedly Catholic.

Jeffrey Kuhner is an eloquent and impassioned columnist for the Washington Times. His most recent column, which will undoubtedly bring a smile to the faces of HappytoBeCatholics, can be found here.

A former professor from Canada's prestigious McGill University, Kuhner reportedly stood out among the impressive faculty for possessing one of those impossibly big brains crammed full of knowledge on a multitude of subjects. This gift, coupled with quick wit and lightning recall, resulted in his classes being crammed with eager and attentive students who knew they were in for something special.

Good news for the American public... Kuhner is a frequent guest host on many syndicated talk radio shows. I happened upon him yesterday as I was station hopping, and he was guest hosting the Michael Savage Show. The discussion was on current events, not faith, but it was really wonderful to know the man behind the microphone sees the world through Catholic eyes.


More from Jeff Kuhner can be found in the archives of the Washington Times, or at the Edmund Burke Institute for American Renewal.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The Importance of Perseverance

Today is a wonderful day! We celebrate the feast of St. John Vianney, truly a remarkable servant of God if ever there was one.

Perhaps the best lesson from the example of St John Vianney's life was that of the importance of perseverance in the face of adversity. St. John Vianney faced many obstacles, including limited education and opposition at various stages in his life from envious and troublemaking people. However, it was in his well- chronicled fights with the devil that this spiritual gem was revealed - he told confidants he noticed that the nights where the Enemy was most vicious in his attacks were always followed by a major conversion the next day. He knew a big fish was coming in, so to speak. Invariably someone who had been away from the sacraments for many years or someone who had been firmly entrenched in a life of serious sin would show up in his confessional, ready to return to Christ.
Life is like that for all of us. The enemy hates all souls, but especially devout Christians. When you are reconciled with God, living according to His Will and everything seems to be going wrong, don't give up! Don't despair! It very likely means that your efforts are pleasing to God, and we know who always wins in the end. Your very own 'big fish' may be right around the corner.

Please take the opportunity today to pray for a special priest, vocations, the Holy Father and the Church. The wonderful, wonderful Curé, patron saint of parish priests, is waiting to intercede on this special day.

AUGUST 4: DESIRE FOR HEAVEN

O Holy Priest of Ars, your precious remains are contained in a magnificent reliquary, the donation from the priests of France. But this earthly glory is only a very pale image of the unspeakable glory which you are enjoying with God. During the time you were on earth, you used to repeat in your dejected hours, 'one will rest in the other life." It is done, you are in eternal peace, and eternal happiness. I desire to follow you one day. Until then, I hear you saying to me: "You should work and fight as long as you are in the world." Teach me then to work for the salvation of my soul, to spread the good news and good example and to do good towards those around me in order that I will receive the happiness of the Elect with you. Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for ... (mention silently your special intentions).


Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be.


O St John Vianney, Patron of Priests, pray for us and for all priests!



Monday, August 3, 2009

St. John Vianney: An Angelic Soul in a Mortal Body

Today we reflect on the Cure's edifying presence to those around him., When we grow closer to God people sense it and draw nearer, as we all hunger on some level for Truth. The saints who submit themselves entirely to Christ are often described as physically unremarkable, even frail, yet radiate an ethereal beauty that acts as a magnet. We are all called to evangelize by word, deed and example, which is really what today's prayer is all about.

Holy Curé , please help us to follow your extraordinary example!

AUGUST 3: EXQUISITE PURITY

O Holy Priest of Ars, a witness of your life made this magnificent praise of you:'We would have taken him for an angel in a mortal body." You so edified others: the modesty and the exquisite purity radiated from your body. With such charm and with such enthusiasm you preached to others about these beautiful virtues which you said resembled the perfume of a vineyard in bloom.Please I beg you to join your entreaties to those of Mary Immaculate and Saint Philomena in order that I guard always, as God asks me, the purity of my heart. You, who have directed so many souls towards the heights of virtue, defend me in temptations and obtain for me the strength to conquer them. Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for ... (mention silently your special intentions).

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

St John Vianney: Spiritual Warrior

Of the many wondrous thing about St. John Vianney's life, his battle with the Infernal Enemy merits special attention as the work of a true servant of God.

The Devil harassed St. John Vianney frequently. The saint permitted himself only a few hours of sleep a night, as mortification and to accommodate the many pilgrims who came to Ars to go to confession with the Curé. The Devil tormented St. John Vianney during the night, disturbing even those few precious moments of sleep. Visitors to the parish would hears the screeches and loud banging that the Enemy used to wake the poor Curé, and this harassment followed him even when he was away from Ars on occasion. The Devil even set St. John Vianney's bed on fire one night! St. John Vianney defeated the Devil with weapons that we all should strive to possess: humility, love of Jesus and complete obedience to God. These are weapons the Devil does not understand, and victory over the most intelligent of angels through the humblest of humans gives spectacular testament to the unfathomable glory of God Almighty.

Humble Curé, please, please pray for the United States before the throne of God. Intercede so the Enemy may no longer use the pride of men to destroy laws which uphold our God-given liberties. Turn our hearts and minds to Jesus, in gratitude and praise forever. Amen.


AUGUST 2: DISPELLER OF SATAN

O Holy Priest of Ars, the infamous attacks of the devil which you had to suffer and the trials which disheartened you by fatigue would not make you give up the sublime task of converting souls. The devil came to you for many years to disturb your short rest but you won because of mortification and prayers. Powerful protector, you know the temptor's desire to harm my baptized and believing soul. He would have me sin, by rejecting the Holy Sacraments and the life of virtue. But good Saint of Ars dispel from me the traces of the enemy.Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for ... (mention silently your special intentions).

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

The Feast of St. Alphonsus Liguori

One of the many things I love about being Catholic are the special feast dates throughout the year, which direct our attention to specific moments in Christ's life or showcase the lives of those who served him in extraordinary fashion.

All week I've been writing about one such person, St. John Vianney, in preparation for his feast on August 4th. In addition to today's post about St. John Vianney's devotion to the Real Presence, I want to take a moment to honor the brilliant moral theologian and Doctor of the Church, St. Alphonsus Liguori.


I quote from his writings on uniformity with God's will.


" The essence of perfection is to embrace the will of God in all things, prosperous or adverse. In prosperity, even sinners find it easy to unite themselves to the divine will; but it takes saints to unite themselves to Gos' will when things go wrong and are painful to self-love. Our conduct in such instances is the measure of our love of God. St. John of Avila used to say 'one Blessed be God in times of adversity is worth more than a thousand acts of gratitude in times of prosperity'..."

Click here to learn more about the inspiring St. Alphonsus Liguori, one of only thirty-three people to be bestowed with the title of Doctor of the Church. He saw many highs and lows in life, and did not let physical pain, disability or injustice deter him from his mission of serving others in service to the Lord.

St. John Vianney and the Real Presence


Could there be a better petition than the one offered today?


I often ask myself...if I really and truly believe that Jesus is present - body, blood, soul and divinity - in the tabernacle, then why would I want to be anywhere else? Yet I don't get to adoration often enough. Today, hopefully the Curé's intercession will help me in that department.


AUGUST 1: REAL PRESENCE

O Holy Priest of Ars, whose only comfort in this world was the real presence of Jesus in the tabernacle, was it not your great joy to distribute the Eucharist to the pilgrims who visited you? You refused Communion to the souls who refused to reform but to souls of goodwill you opened wide the doors of the Eucharistic Feast.You, who each day at Holy Mass received Holy Communion with great loves, give me some of your fervor. With freedom from mortal sin, obtain for me a sincere desire to profit from receiving Holy Communion. Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for... (mention silently your special intentions).
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Horror of Sin : The Curé of Ars

I posted the novena prayer for today yesterday. Somehow got the days mixed up, but I learned something in the process. Yesterday I pondered whether it was a blessing or a burden to be gifted with the charism of reading souls, for knowledge of the sins of others could be deeply unsettling without the right perspective.

Well, had I not bucked the novena's order I would have had the answer to that very question. Though he was horrified by sin, St. John Vianney was 'so sympathetic ' to our fallen natures and 'so ready to welcome the sinner'.
To see the situation with such loving clarity, to possess the ability to both admonish and love the sinner, can be nothing but the extraordinary grace of our all good, all powerful and unfathomably loving God.


JULY 30: HORROR OF SIN


Saint John Mary Baptist Vianney, you were so adamant against sin, yet so sympathetic and so ready to welcome the sinner. I come to you today as if you were still alive, as if I were kneeling at your feet and you could hear me. Bend towards me, listen to the repentant confidence for the weaknesses and miserable deeds of mine. Priest of the Lord, inexhaustible Confessor, obtain for me the horror for sin. You wanted us First to avoid the occasion of sin. I want to take your advice and make the resolution to break bad habits and to avoid the dangerous occasions of sin. Help me today to examine my conscience.Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for... (mention silently your special intentions).


Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Curé of Ars Novena : Confession

St. John Vianney possessed many spiritual gifts, though none as widely reported on as his ability to read the consciences of those who came to him for the sacrament of reconciliation. I can't decide if that makes the role of confessor easier or more difficult, for it could very easily be overwhelming to know so much about the sins of so many. However, because this knowledge was viewed through the eyes of Love, the humble Curé undoubtedly bore any burden cheerfully, thanking God for the grace of helping save souls in peril.

JULY 31: CONFESSOR OF SOULS


O Holy Priest of Ars, you knew how important was a good confession for the Christian life. It was to procure the happy fruits of millions of souls that you agreed to be in an uncomfortable confessional, which was like a prison, up to 15 to 16 hours on certain days. I will try to develop the habit of frequent confession, to prepare properly each time and to have always regret for my sins, so that the grace of final perseverance but also the sanctification of my soul will be assured. Ask this grace for me.Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for ... (mention silently your special intentions).


Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

St. John Vianney Novena, Day Three

Today we petition the humble Curé to intercede for us, asking God to hear our own petitions but not before requesting the all important grace of true love of neighbor.

What a different place the world would be if everyone asked for - and accepted - this beautiful grace.

JULY 29: TRUE LOVE OF NEIGHBOR


Saint John Marie Baptist Vianney because of your love of God you showed great charity towards your neighbor. You could not preach on the Love of God without burning tears of love. During your last years, it seemed as though you could not talk about any thing else or live for anything else. Thus you sacrificed yourself to your neighbor by consoling, absolving and sanctifying them to the limits of your strength. Your charity inspires me to greater love of God, a love which is shown more by acts then by words. Help me to love my neighbor generously as Christ loves them.Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for ... (mention silently your special intentions).


Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Curé of Ars: The Importance of Fasting

Today is Day 2 of a powerful novena asking the intercession of St. John Vianney, whose feast is celebrated August 4th.

If you are seeking a miracle, see no way out of a situation, or are on the verge of giving in to the temptation of despair - please do not lose hope! If your health permits, you may wish to consider offering a fast along with the prayers of this novena.

Here is what the holy, humble Curé himself said about the efficacy of fasting:

Regarding mortification, he once said, “My friend, the devil is not greatly afraid of the discipline and other instruments of penance. That which beats him is the curtailment of one’s food, drink and sleep. There is nothing the devil fears more, consequently, nothing is more pleasing to God. Oh! How often have I experienced it! Whilst I was alone – and I was alone during eight or nine years, and therefore quite free to yield to my attraction – it happened at times that I refrained from food for entire days. On those occasions I obtained, both for myself and for others, whatsoever I asked of Almighty God.”

JULY 28

A Petition for: COMPLETE TRUST IN GOD

Saint John Marie Baptist Vianney, what confidence the people had in your prayers! You could not leave your old rectory or your humble church without being surrounded by imploring souls, who appealed to you as they would have appealed to Jesus Himself during His earthly life. And you, O good Saint, gave them hope by your words, which were full of love for God. You, who had always counted entirely on the heart of God, obtain for me a deep filial trust in His Providence. As the hope of divine goods fills my heart, give me courage and help me to always obey the Commandments of God. Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for ... (mention silently your special intentions).

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be.
with appreciation to ewtn.com

Monday, July 27, 2009

Novena to St. John Vianney, the Curé of Ars

Today the faithful begin a novena to St. John Vianney, or the Curé of Ars as he is also known.

This extraordinarily holy saint was gifted with the charism of reading souls, and it was not unusual for him to spend 13-16 hours each day in the confessional. It is reported that he gave so much of himself serving the Lord that he only slept 2 hours a night. Many cures were attributed to his intercession, and he was frequently attacked by the devil. In one such attack, it was revealed to him that if there were three men as holy as he on Earth, Satan's kingdom would be broken.

St. John Vianney is the patron saint of priests and it is wonderful to be able to ask for his powerful intercession during this, the Year of the Priest . Please consider adding a special priest to your intentions for this novena.

Novena to St. John Vianney, the Curé of Ars


JULY 27: ARDENT FAITH

Saint John Marie Baptist Vianney you were born of a deeply religious mother; from her you received the Holy Faith; you learned to love God and to pray. At a young age, you were seen kneeling in the front of the statue of Mary. Your soul was supernaturally carried towards the things on High. Despite the high cost, you answered your vocation!

Against many obstacles and contradictions, you had to fight and suffer to become the perfect priest which you were. But your deep spirit of faith supported you in all these battles. 0 Great Saint you know the desire of my soul; I would like to serve God better; from Him I have received so many good things. For this, obtain for me more courage and especially the depth of faith.

Many of my thoughts, words, and actions are useless for my sanctification and for my salvation, because this supernatural spirit does not stir up my life. Help me to be better in the future.

Holy Priest of Ars, I have confidence in your intercession. Pray for me during this novena especially for ... (mention silently your special intentions).

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be

Saturday, July 25, 2009

St. Joseph's Humble Heart

FOR YOUR DISCERNMENT: this story contains private revelation

A few weeks ago I was at an event held in a Catholic church, waiting for an unrelated business meeting with one of the speakers. I was standing at the back of the room taking everything in when a gentleman approached me.

“I met Padre Pio,” he said by way of introduction.

“You did?” I asked.

“Yes. I was eight years old, visiting Italy with my family. I went into his confessional.” He nodded encouragingly and said. “Padre Pio only said one word to me.”

“What was that? “ I inquired.

“He came out of the confessional, took my hands and said 'Bella', then walked away. Another priest came over and explained that Padre Pio didn’t hear confessions in English.”

“Wow,” I said, smiling. “I don’t know that I’ve ever met anyone who personally met Padre Pio. What a wonderful blessing for you.”

He then reached into his pocket and pulled out a holy card protected by plastic. Suspended between the card and the plastic was a small amount of hair.

He said “This is from Padre Pio’s beard.”

At this point I really didn’t know what to make of everything. His story seemed perfectly plausible, even delightful, until this point. Maybe because the hair suspended in the plastic case closely resembled the man’s own beard, I became suspicious.

I said “Wow, that’s great” and then excused myself to go get a drink while I waited for my meeting.

I returned to the room a little while later and the man again approached. He said “Jesus appeared to me in a dream.”

I said a half-hearted “Wow.” followed by another “That’s great.” and began plotting my exit.

He said “Do you want to know what Jesus said?

“Sure,” I sighed.

“He appeared as the Sacred Heart, and told me ‘You know to honor my Sacred Heart, and the Immaculate Heart of my mother’. Then He asked me ‘ But what about the heart of Saint Joseph?' ”

At this point the rest of the room faded away and I was aware only of the very loud beating of my heart. I have no idea why, but everything in my being was telling me to pay attention to this man from whom only moments earlier I had been trying to escape. Keep in mind that I was there on non-Catholic business, waiting for a meeting with another man who just happened to be speaking at this church, and this stranger had approached me without solicitation.

Two bits of information before I proceed. First, I have a very big devotion to St. Joseph, and I devour everything that I can get my hands on about his life. I love how he loved Our Lady and I love how he loved Our Lord. Secondly, I am incredibly wary of private revelation, so I submit what the man said next for your discernment.

The man continued “Jesus showed me an image and said ‘Behold the Humble Heart of St. Joseph’”.

Again, private revelation is a very sticky wicket, and even many saints were fooled by their own imaginations and the Enemy. That being said, it does make sense to my lay Catholic-self (with not an ounce of ecclesiastical authority) that St. Joseph’s holy, loving and obedient heart could absolutely be called The Humble Heart. It also would not surprise me that Our Lord would wish the world to honor The Humble Heart of his beloved foster father.

The man explained that he asked someone to draw a picture of the image Jesus had shown him. He promised to mail it to me, but I have yet to receive it. If he does send it to me, I will post it here.

The man continued. “A few years later Padre Pio appeared to me in a dream and said Jesus revealed to you the Humble Heart of St. Joseph. Why haven’t you done anything with this information? "

The man was visibly frustrated. “I don’t know what I can do. I’ve told people, but don’t know what else I can do.”

So, here his story for your discernment.

Good night and God Bless.


PS Anyone wishing to make a pilgrimage or submit prayers to the National Shrine of St. Joseph (located in Green Bay, WI) can find information here.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Socialism and the Church

In light of the looming threat of socialized medicine in the United States, I am resposting this item from the archives. I highly recommend ordering this particular DVD from EWTN...it was one of the most informative and eye opening interviews I've ever seen.

(PS While you're waiting for your DVD to arrive, here's a hint on the Church's position...socialism has been the cornerstone of every evil regime in history.)

Socialism and the Church

Lots of talk about socialism these days. Wonder where the Church stands on it?
Father John Corapi to the rescue. He's researched the church's position on socialism, distilled it and explains it in an easy-to-understand manner the White House hopes you'll never have a chance to hear.

http://www.ewtnreligiouscatalogue.com/2009/cid=520/shop.axd/Category.

Monday, July 20, 2009

The Rosary Stops Ted Bundy


Spirit Daily today links to InGod'sCompany2 blog with an amazing post - this story is a must read. The power of the rosary never ceases to amaze me. Please pray it today and every day.


The Killer and the Rosary


"... To understand that Our Lady needs us, it helps to begin with the awareness that we also need her and that her help never fails those who pray to her with a sincere heart. This American Monsignor is a good witness of that.

On May 14, 2009, Mgr. William Kerr, a leading human rights figure, died. Mgr. Kerr often spoke of his very first hospital assignment, where he ministered to a young burn victim dying from his injuries. Later, he recalled, he would be called upon to perform even more ghastly duties.

In 1978, the police called Msgr. Kerr in the middle of the night to accompany them to a sorority house in Tallahassee. When he arrived he was told that all but one of the girls in the house were dead or near death, killed by the infamous serial killer, Ted Bundy. After administering last rites to one of the college girls who was dying, the police on the scene asked Fr. Kerr to speak with a girl who had survived the massacre unscathed. They had a very specific question: Why did Bundy stop right inside the door to her room, drop his weapon, and leave without touching her?

The young woman refused to speak to anyone except a priest. When Fr. Kerr approached the near-catatonic girl, she told him that her mother had made her promise, before going off to college for the first time, that she would pray the Rosary every night before bed for protection. Even if she fell asleep praying the Rosary, which she had that night. When Bundy came into her room to murder her as he had the other girls, the beads were still clutched in her hands.

Ironically, Bundy later sought out Msgr. Kerr as a spiritual counselor while he waited on death row. Over the course of their sessions, Bundy explained to Mgr. Kerr that when he entered the girl’s room, he just wasn’t able to continue with his spree, he dropped his weapon, and he fled.

Such is the power of our Mother’s protective mantle. Such also is the wisdom of a mom, who managed to give her daughter the most efficient, powerful weapon - the rosary, which later saved her life. "


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Prayer to Our Lady of Perpetual Succor


I came across this prayer today and thought it was really special. Our Lady of Perpetual Succor is also known as Our Lady of Perpetual Help.
Enjoy!


Prayer Found Under Christ's Sepulchre, 1503 AD


O God Almighty, who suffered death upon the cross, particularly for my sins, be with me.
Holy Cross of Jesus - have pity on me.

Holy Cross of Jesus - be my protector.

Holy Cross of Jesus - take away all bitter pains.

Holy Cross of Jesus - take away all evil.

Holy Cross of Jesus - let me walk in the way of salvation.
Preserve me from any temporal accidents, take away any danger of sudden death. I always adore the Holy Cross of Jesus Christ: Jesus of Nazareth crucified, have pity on me; make the spirit of evil leave me for all times. O Mother of Perpetual Succour. I come before Thy Sacred picture and with a child-like conscience invoke thine aid. Show Thyself a Mother to me now. Have pity of me. O, dearest Mother of Perpetual Succour, for the love Thou bearest to Jesus and in honor of His Sacred Wounds, help me in this my necessity.
( mention your intention here)
O Loving Mother, I leave is all to thee in the Name of the Father. I leave all to Thee in the Name of the Son. I leave all to Thee in the Name of the Holy Spirit.
Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, pray for us.Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, pray for us.Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, pray for us.


Amen.

Monday, July 6, 2009

School of Thought

Could someone please explain to me why this is a good idea?

*Sigh*

Michael Jackson Fans Commiting Suicide

Please add this intention to your prayers. I am stunned and saddened by this news:


Yahoo News UK is reporting that at least a dozen Michael Jackson fans have committed suicide in the wake of the pop star's death.

According to Gary Taylor, president and owner of MJJcommunity.com, 12 distraught fans of the 'King of Pop' have taken their own lives, apparently unable to cope with the loss of their hero.

Taylor said the singer's death had left his fans on the forum "in a surreal place"...They can't accept it, they feel in some sort of different reality"

Taylor continued "It is a serious situation that these people are going through but Michael Jackson would never want this. He would want them to live."

The article also states that the Reverend Jesse Jackson, a friend of the singer, recorded a YouTube video asking Jackson fans not to "self destruct" over the loss of the singer.


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Wasting the Precious Gift of Time

I meant to post several items today - really good, interesting things about St. Joseph. "Oh good, HappytoBeCatholic." you might say. "I love St. Joseph, and can't wait to read this entry. But could you help me...I'm having a little trouble finding any current posts about him."
Of course it is not you, it is me. Tonight HappytoBeCatholic is guilty of of squandering one of God's most precious gifts - the gift of time.
Of course I did have work and family matters to attend to throughout much of the day. But for the last hour I have been reading Internet gossip sites. I mean, really - is there a bigger waste of time?
I will have to stand before the Lord some day and account for each of those lost minutes. I will have to say that I chose to use God's precious gift of time reading about people who I do not know, knowing full well that their business is none of my business, even though they are celebrities of one manner or another. And the information was often mean-spirited or unverified, and very possibly untrue.

Gossip is a sin. Of course I know that, and I still did it anyway.

Ugh.

So...a special prayer found in TAN Books The Seven Capital Sins, applies.


My Resolution for Today


I resolve this day:

To do all in my power to resist evil and to do good.

To fulfill all the responsibilities of my state in life faithfully.

To observe kindness and honesty in all contacts with my fellowmen.

To preserve complete purity of soul.

If I should be tempted to evil, I will repeat in my heart the words, “Do what is right; Be right; Be cheerful!”

That I may be able to keep this resolution, I ask the help of God, my Creator.


I am still mad at myself but I felt a little better when I saw this description of the The Seven Capital Sins on Tan's website:


Everyone, unfortunately, will see himself described in the pages of this little book, since all our sins are traceable to these seven roots: Pride, Covetousness (Avarice), Lust, Anger, Gluttony, Envy and Sloth. The Seven Capital Sins explains the true nature, degrees, acts and family relationships (or connecting links) among these seven vices, and it gives the remedies and safeguards against them.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Thirty Pieces of Silver

Lately I've had a hard time finding the right words to express how strongly I feel our country is on the express train to someplace bleak and sad. I can't shake the feeling that the voting public sold the soul of the United States of America.

And today we have the news that the political party which has embraced socialism and the culture of death now has a filibuster-proof majority.

Jesus did not suffer so horribly and die on the cross so that millions of babies could be slaughtered each year. He did not die so that we could ration health care and let our infirm and elderly die in the name of progress. He did not die so that we might turn our back on the teachings of the Church because they are 'out of touch' or not particularly convenient.

Judas sold Him out for thirty pieces of silver. The United States of America sold Him out for the promise of 'hope' and 'change'.

Interesting how the price of Faustian bargains is always freedom.

Americans are about to lose so many of our precious freedoms, and we'll be crippled economically to boot.

Someone, somewhere is laughing.

It is not Our Lord.

Our Lady of Sorrows, pray for us.

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Sacred Heart and the Year of the Priest

Today is a VERY BIG DAY in the Catholic Church
First, we celebrate the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
Secondly, today marks the beginning of the Year of the Priest for the Catholic Church!

On the Sacred Heart...
Our beloved Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, has wonderful insight into the Sacred Heart of Jesus. For three brilliant reflections, plus a wonderful history of devotion to the Sacred Heart please visit this site


On the Year of the Priest...


Please consider 'adopting' a priest this year. There are formal 'adoption' programs organized by local dioceses; where others are selecting a priest and 'adopting' them privately.


What does 'adoption' entail?


  • Including them in your daily prayers

  • Offering small penances for the priest throughout the year

  • Offering a Holy Hour for the priest

  • Offering Mass for the priest


You may also wish to consider contacting your local diocese or an Order, such as the Marians of the Immaculate Conception, Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, Norbertines, Jesuits, etc. and asking for the name of a priest for whom you might be able to offer prayers.


Masses and other celebrations are taking place around the world. It is great to be part of such a positive, spectacular effort to renew the soldiers on the front lines of the fight for Truth.


More thoughts on the Year of the Priest here


God Bless!


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Prayers for The Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Tomorrow, June 19th, the Church celebrates the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Please consider attending Mass with the intent of making reparation for the offenses against His Most Sacred Heart; making a Holy Hour to adore His Sacred Heart and finally, consecrating yourself and your loved ones to His Sacred Heart.

It is also a splendid day to approach Our Lord’s magnificent, merciful, ever loving Sacred Heart with great trust. Tell Him your troubles, your fears, your hopes and dreams. He waits so patiently for us, is ignored and endures so many insults from men. Please beg God to expand your heart, that you might love Him more.

A Prayer to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

O LORD JESUS CHRIST,
To your most Sacred Heart,
I confide this intention
(mention your request)

Only look upon me, and then do
What your Sacred Heart inspires.

Let your Sacred Heart decide
I count on it, I trust in it
I throw myself on Your mercy,
Lord Jesus! You will not fail me.

Sacred Heart of Jesus, I trust in You.
Sacred Heart of Jesus,
I believe in Your love for me.
Sacred Heart of Jesus, Your Kingdom come.
O Sacred Heart of Jesus,
I have asked you for many favors,
But I earnestly implore this one. Take it. Place it in Your open, broken Heart;
And, when the Eternal Father looks upon It,
Covered with Your Precious Blood,
He will not refuse it.

It will be no longer my prayer,
But Yours, O Jesus.
O Sacred Heart of Jesus,
I place all my trust in You.

Let me not be disappointed.
Amen.

With appreciation to mycatholictradition.com

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Consecration of Families to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

The feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus is just two days away – here is an extraordinary prayer for families who wish to grow closer to Our Lord.

Consecration of Families to the Sacred Heart


O most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thou didst reveal to the blessed Margaret Mary Thy desire to rule over Christian families; behold, in order to please Thee, we stand before Thee this day, to proclaim Thy full sovereignty over our family. We desire henceforth to live Thy life, we desire that the virtues, to which Thou hast promised peace on earth, may flower in the bosom of our family; we desire to keep far from us the spirit of the world, which Thou hast condemned. Thou art King of our hearts by our love of Thee alone, with which our hearts are on fire and whose flame we shall nourish by frequent reception of the Holy Eucharist.
Be pleased, O Sacred Heart, to preside over our gathering together, to bless our spiritual and temporal affairs, to ward off all annoyance from us, to bless our joys and comfort our sorrows. If any of us has ever been so unhappy as to fall into the misery of displeasing Thee, grant that he may remember, O Heart of Jesus, that Thou art full of goodness and mercy toward the repentant sinner. And when the hour of separation strikes and death enters our family circle, whether we go or whether we stay, we shall all bow meekly before Thine eternal decrees. This shall be our consolation, to remember that the day will come, when our entire family, once more united in heaven, shall be able to sing of Thy glory and Thy goodness forever. May the immaculate Heart of Mary and the glorious Patriarch Saint Joseph vouchsafe to offer Thee this our act of consecration, and to keep the memory thereof alive in us all the days of our lives.

Glory to the Heart of Jesus, our King and our Father!
Amen.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Bill O'Reilly vs. Joan Walsh

Fox News commentator Bill O’Reilly has been at the center of controversy following the murder of notorious late-term abortionist Dr. George Tiller. O’Reilly has reported numerous times on Tiller’s grisly Kansas abortion mill, where a reported 60,000 babies have been aborted – some as late as the day before they were due. Pro-abortion activists have asserted that by calling attention to Tiller’s practices, O’Reilly may have encouraged violence against Tiller.
Joan Walsh, editor of Salon.com, defended the pro-partial birth abortion position on a recent edition of The O'Reilly Factor. The exchange quickly becomes contentious, but what caught my attention was a moment about midway through Part 2 of the interview.

Joan Walsh indignantly justifies her position by adamantly calling herself a “pro- choice Catholic who believes in abortion, reduction and working with young girls...” She then goes on to call Tiller a ‘hero’.

Here’s a newsflash for you, Joan: YOU CANNOT BE PRO-CHOICE AND BE CATHOLIC.

Don’t believe me?

Please call the Vatican for clarification.

Or are you, like Nancy Pelosi, going to try and claim that you know the Catholic faith better than the Pope does?

Preparing for the Feast of The Sacred Heart of Jesus

Here's a brief but beautiful prayer to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Friday, June 19th

PRAYER TO THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS

O most holy heart of Jesus, fountain of every blessing, I adore you, I love you, and with lively sorrow for my sins I offer you this poor heart of mine. Make me humble, patient, pure and wholly obedient to your will. Grant, Good Jesus, that I may live in You and for You. Protect me in the midst of danger. Comfort me in my afflictions. Give me health of body, assistance in my temporal needs, your blessing on all that I do, and the grace of a holy death.

Amen.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A Week of Prayers to the Scared Heart

In honor of the approaching feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus ( Friday, June 19th), I will post a different prayer to the Scared Herat of Our Lord, along with other hopefully helpful information, every day this week.

God Bless!


Traditional Irish Prayer of Reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus


Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on me.

O God, forgive me for all the sins of my life;

The sins of my youth and the sins of my age,

The sins of my body and the sins of my soul,

The sins I have confessed and the sins I have forgotten,

The sins against others in thought, word, and deed,

My sins of omission.

O, my God, I am sorry for all my sins, because you are so good;

And I will not sin again with the help of God.God be merciful to me, a sinner.

Divine Heart of Jesus, convert sinners, save the dying, Deliver the holy souls in purgatory.


Amen.

The Traveling Catholic : Mass on the Road

Weekend travel can present a dilemma for Catholics, who often scramble to find Mass on the road. Worry no more! One Sunday morning my husband had to take an early flight across the country. Saturday evening we were invited to attend an event hosted by a good friend who we hadn’t seen in some time. The event was scheduled from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. Given my husband’s scheduled flight the following day, we debated whether or not we should arrive early, stay a short while and then head to Mass or go to Mass first and catch the last hour or so of the gathering.

Then I found http://www.parishesonline.com/ , and in a few clicks located an evening Mass within walking distance of my husband’s hotel. It was win- win. We enjoyed great quality time with our friends, and my husband loved the Mass, held in a beautiful cathedral that he might never have had the occasion to visit.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A License to Dream...

Here's a great story about a man, a dream, license plates, and a great use for ten million dollars.

Enjoy!

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Unforgivable Sin

During the 2008 primary election cycle, an employee of one of the Democrat presidential candidates wrote something horribly offensive about the Holy Spirit on her blog. (Adding insult to injury she also insulted Our Lady) There was much discussion among political pundits as to whether or not this woman had committed the 'Unforgivable Sin'.

As I recall, the woman soon resigned or was terminated and commentators were still going round and round as to whether or not her soul was in peril.


A simple consultation with this handy page from the Diocese of Lincoln would have reassured those concerned that our good, loving and infinitely merciful God would likely open his arms wide if she approached Him with sincere contrition.


What is the sin against the Holy Spirit (Mark 3:29) which can never be forgiven, but is an eternal sin?


No sin is unpardonable, speaking objectively, since God wills all men to be saved (1 Tim. 2:4). However, God cannot and will not pardon anyone unless there is repentance and an acceptance of His mercy. It is precisely the lack of repentance and the refusal of God's mercy which cannot ever be forgiven. Usually the "sins of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit" are listed as six in number:

1. Presumption of saving oneself without Christ or His Church or else without personal effort and cooperation with grace

2. despair of God's mercy

3. deliberately resisting the truths of the Catholic Faith

4. envy of another's spiritual good

5. final impenitence.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Gender Test Kit

I saw this article on the 'Gender Test Kit' and a comment Fr. John Corapi once made about cloning came to mind.

"Not everything we are able to do, is something that we should do."

The developers and manufacturers of the Gender Test Kit must have all sorts of reasons why it was a good idea for expectant parents to be able to determine the sex of their baby in the convenience of their own homes as early as two months into the pregnancy.
I assume the logic went something like this...
Decorating the nursery and planning baby showers would be so much easier.

It's still a surprise...they're just surprised seven months earlier.

Of course this is capitalizing on the impatience of a generation accustomed to instant gratification. Microwave cooking, music downloads, and movies-on-demand are often 'too slow' for folks today.

How can people reasonably be expected to wait nine months to find out the sex of their children?

So...did the thought that a family, say saddled with two girls and desperately longing for a boy, might purchase this kit to determine whether or not to have their child or abort it, enter into the discussion?

I suspect so. Maybe they said

What they do with our kit is their choice. We're just providing a service.

or , they might have been indignant at the thought...
Honestly! China aside, if parents care enough to buy this kit, they are not going to murder their own child over something as silly as the sex of the baby.

Oh yes they would.
Our Lady of Guadalupe, pray for us.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

First Saturday

Today, June 6, is the first Saturday of the month. A great day to start the First Saturday devotion. God bless you!

June, dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

June is the month dedicated by the Church to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. This extraordinary devotion is said to draw souls close to the heart of Our Lord, and the promises for those devoted to His Sacred heart are extraordinary.

Padre Pio recited the following ‘ Efficacious Novena to the Sacred Heart of Jesus’ every day for those who requested his prayers.


I. O my Jesus, you have said: "Truly I say to you, ask and you will receive, seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you." Behold I knock, I seek and ask for the grace of...... (here name your request)


Our Father....Hail Mary....Glory Be to the Father....Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in you.


II. O my Jesus, you have said: "Truly I say to you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, he will give it to you." Behold, in your name, I ask the Father for the grace of.......(here name your request) Our Father...Hail Mary....Glory Be To the Father....Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in you.


III. O my Jesus, you have said: "Truly I say to you, heaven and earth will pass away but my words will not pass away." Encouraged by your infallible words I now ask for the grace of.....(here name your request)


Our Father....Hail Mary....Glory Be to the Father...Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in you.


O Sacred Heart of Jesus, for whom it is impossible not to have compassion on the afflicted, have pity on us miserable sinners and grant us the grace which we ask of you, through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, your tender Mother and ours.


Say the Hail, Holy Queen and add: St. Joseph, foster father of Jesus, pray for us.

-- St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
with appreciattion to ewtn.com

Thursday, June 4, 2009

First Friday Devotion

Just a reminder that Friday June 5th is the first Friday of the month of June - a great day to start the First Friday Devotion if you're not already participating!

This devotion consists in attending Holy Mass and receiving Holy Communion in reparation for those who do not receive Our Lord, who do not love Him and who wound Him by their sinful lives.


"I promise you, in the excessive mercy of My Heart, that My all-powerful love will grant to all those who communicate on the First Friday of nine consecutive months, the grace of final penitence; they shall not die in my disgrace, nor without receiving their Sacraments, My Divine Heart shall be their safe refuge in this last moment."

-----Our Lord to St. Margaret Mary
THE GREAT PROMISE
This promise is contained in a letter written in May, 1688, by St. Margaret Mary to Mother Saumaise:


"On a Friday during Holy Communion, He said these words to His unworthy slave, if I mistake not:


I promise you in the excessive mercy of My Heart that Its all-powerful love will grant to all those who receive Holy Communion on nine first Fridays of the month consecutively, the grace of final repentance; they will not die under My displeasure or without receiving their Sacraments, My Divine Heart making Itself their assured refuge at the last moment."

With regard to this promise it may be remarked:


1) that Our Lord required Communion to be received on a particular day chosen by Him


2) that the nine Fridays must be consecutive


3) that they must be made in honor of His Sacred Heart, which means that those who make the nine Fridays must practice the devotion and must have a great love for Our Lord


4) that Our Lord does not say that those who make the nine Fridays will be dispensed from any of their obligations or from exercising the vigilance necessary to lead a good life and overcome temptation, rather He implicitly promises abundant graces to those who make the Nine Fridays to help them to carry out these obligations and persevere to the end


5) that perseverance in receiving Holy Communion for nine consecutive First Fridays helps the faithful to acquire the habit of frequent Communion, which Our Lord eagerly desires


6) finally, that the practice of the Nine Fridays is very pleasing to Our Lord since He promises such a great reward, and that all Catholics should endeavor to make the Nine Fridays.


PROTECTION PROMISED BY OUR LORD AT THE MOMENT OF DEATH.
"The Divine Heart of Jesus again gave me to understand and assured me," writes St. Margaret Mary, "that the pleasure which He takes in being known, loved and honored by His creatures is so great that He promised me that none of those who practice this amiable devotion and are devoted to His adorable Heart will ever perish."


with appreciation to catholictradition.org

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Nothing is Impossible with God!


I came across a great novena for the stickiest of situations, thought I would share:

NOVENA for IMPOSSIBLE REQUESTS

(This Novena honours the nine months during which Our Lady carried Our Blessed Lord in her womb)

"Hail, Holy Queen,
Mother of Mercy,
our life, our sweetness and our hope!
To thee do we cry,
poor banished children of Eve;
to thee do we send up our sighs,
mourning and weeping in this valley of tears.
Turn then, most gracious advocate,
thine eyes of mercy towards us;
and after this our exile,
show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb Jesus.
O clement, O loving,
O sweet Virgin Mary. Amen."

V - Pray for us, most holy mother of God.
R - That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

"Virgin of the Incarnation,
a thousand times we greet thee,
a thousand times we praise thee
for thy joy when God was incarnated in thee.
Because thou art so powerful
a Virgin and Mother of God,
grant what we ask of thee for the love of God."

Here state your first intention.

Repeat all of above and then state your second intention.

Repeat all of above and then state your third intention.

CONCLUSION:
After the above prayers and intentions, say the Memorare.

Remember, O most Gracious Virgin Mary,
that never was it known
that anyone who fled to thy protection,
implored thy help
or sought thy intercession was left unaided.
Inspired by this confidence,
I fly unto thee,
O Virgin of Virgins,
my mother.
To thee do I cry,
before thee I stand,
sinful and sorrowful.
Mother of the Word Incarnate,
despise not my petitions,
but in thy mercy hear and answer me.
Amen.

Hail Mary...

Blessed and praised be
the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar,
in Heaven, on earth and everywhere.

AMEN.

And when all seems lost, don't forget we have a nuclear weapon in our prayer arsenals...