Saturday, November 04, 2006

The Madonna and Child Postal Stamp Project

Hawaii was blessed with having the late Father Gerard J. Leicht for 56 years as a priest in the Honolulu Diocese. He belonged to the order of the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary. Sadly, Fr. Leicht passed away a few years ago on January 24th, 2002 and he is still missed very much.

One ministry that Fr. Leicht founded was the Madonna and Child Postal Stamp Project. It was his idea to have Catholics everywhere buying and using as many of the Madonna and Child Christmas stamps from the
The United States Post Office, as possible and to use them throughout the year. These stamps are usually only available during the Christmas season

This was Father Leicht's way of evangelizing and reminding everyone that "Jesus is the Reason for the Season".

So, the next time you plan on purchasing your stamps, start buying the Christmas Madonna and Child stamps as long as they are available, and use them on everything that you mail that requires a stamp.

My family started doing this a few years ago and it is now a tradition for us to only use the Christmas stamps throughout the year. The one shown above is this year's stamp.

Note: The following is a little background on the Christmas stamp. The artist as you will read, is Peruvian.

The 2006 Christmas stamp features an oil-on-canvas with gold details entitled Madonna and Child with Bird. Dating to around 1765, the painting is attributed to Ignacio Chacón—an artist active from about 1745 to 1775 in Cuzco, Peru. It is now part of the Engracia and Frank Barrows Freyer Collection of Peruvian colonial art at the Denver Art Museum.

The theme of each "traditional" U.S. Christmas stamp issued since 1978 has been the Madonna and Child, and these holiday stamps have attracted a devoted following over the years. Ignacio Chacón's Madonna and Child with Bird underscores the appreciation of this timeless genre. Imbued with the sacred symbols of two cultures, the painting is a striking reminder of the diversity inherent in the spread of Christianity to the New World.

In designing the stamp, art director Michael
Osborne slightly cropped the painting's floral "frame" and surrounded the entire
composition with a gold border that echoes Chacón's use of gold-leaf

Friday, November 03, 2006

San Martin de Porres - Quote

"Compassion is preferable to cleanliness.
Reflect that with a little soap I can easily clean my bed covers,
but even with a torrent of tears I would never wash from my soul the stain that my harshness toward the unfortunate would create."

So said St. Martin after being punished for picking up a destitute elderly beggar and placing him in his bed at the Monastery. St. Martin went humbly to his superior and asked for forgiveness. He said that he didn't know that obedience took precedence over charity.

St. Martin De Porres (1579-1639)

Angels and The Holy Eucharist

H/T to Sue C.

St. Basil and St. John Chrysostom testify to having seen at the time of Mass, or when the Blessed Sacrament was exposed, many hosts of Angels in human form, clothed with white garments and standing round the altar as soldiers stand before their king. But what was their attitude and deportment? Their heads were bowed, their faces covered, their hands crossed, and the whole body so profoundly inclined as to express the deepest sense of their own unworthiness to appear before the Divine Majesty. Oh, would we but think of this! The Angels, those pure spirits, shrink before the Infinite Holiness of God, and we allow vain, worldly and even sinful thoughts to insinuate themselves into our minds in His Presence!

The Angels tremble before His Greatness, and we fear not to talk and laugh in His Presence! The Angels, those princes of Heaven, are all humility and modesty, and we, the dust of the earth and miserable sinners, all impertinence and pride! The Angels veil their faces before His splendor, and we do not even so much as cast down our eyes, but rudely stare and gaze around! The Angels bow down to the earth, and we will not bend our knee! The Angels, full of awe, fold their hands upon their breasts, and we allow ourselves every freedom of attitude and movement!! Oh, what a subject of confusion! What humiliating reflections! What an impressive lesson!

The Blessed Eucharist: Our Greatest Treasure
Fr. Michael Muller, C.S.S.R

Feast Day - San Martin de Porres

Picture of our family statue given to us by our son's late Godmother and our good friend.

As you may or may not know, being of Peruvian descent, I am partial to the Peruvian saints. Both St. Martin and Sta. Rosa were Dominicans and very much in love with God. I am currently reading a book translated from the French. It is entitled the Life of St. Martin de Porres: Patron Saint of Interracial Justice by Stanislas Fumet. The following excerpt is from the book:

..."He had an infinite respect for priests, who touched God with their blessed hands, and it was this veneration which caused him every morning to throw himself on his knees in front of the first priest he met and kiss his hands. Or, again, prostrating himself along the way that the religious came, he felt no repugnance in gently asking them to trample him underfoot like a worm, for he was nothing but an abject and despicable being..."

This is just one little example of how humble this simple man born illegitimately to a Black Panamanian woman and a Spaniard officer, felt about himself. When I read and learn more about his humility, his love of neighbor, his love of God, it makes me so ashamed of myself for the little comforts that I like, the complaints I make when things do go my way or go well. But I'm glad because he inspires me to strive for sainthood.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Solemnity of All Souls Day

Aladar Korosfoi-Kriesch
Hungarian National Gallery, Budapest
Picture Courtesy of
Women for Faith and Family

I believe one can earn plenary indulgence by praying for the poor souls in purgatory on this day. If I am not mistaken, a visit to a cemetery and/or Church (attending Mass) and praying for the intentions of the Souls in Purgatory and our Holy Father's intentions...Our Father...Hail Mary...Glory Be...Apostle's Creed, will gain one the plenary indulgence.

Mahalo to my friend Mary Ann for sharing the following:

Prayer to Holy Souls in Purgatory

Oh holy souls in purgatory, you are the certain heirs of heaven. You are most dear to Jesus as the trophies of His Precious Blood and to Mary, Mother of Mercy. Obtain for me through your intercession the grace to lead a holy life, to die a happy death, and to attain to the blessedness of eternity in heaven.

Dear suffering souls, who long to be delivered in order to praise and glorify God in heaven, by your unfailing pity help me in the needs which distress me at this time, particularly {mention your petition} so that I may obtain relief and assistance from God.

In gratitude for your intercession I offer to God in your behalf the satisfactory merits of my prayer and work, my joys and sufferings of this day.

And to Sue for the following:

A Prayer for the Suffering Souls

O Adorable Trinity, cast upon us Thy merciful glance. Look at these souls whom Thou hast created, and who suffer far from Thee an unutterable grief. Look at Thy poor contrite servants, humbly supplicating Thee in their behalf. For the sake of the glorious Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus Christ, and our Mother also, deign to shorten the sufferings of these desolate souls; and to us all who labor in the miseries of the life, grant the grace of eternal salvation.

I am only a sinner, but in obedience to Thy command, dear Jesus, I dare to intercede with Thee for my captive brethren. Deign by Thy Holy Sacrifice to appease the justice of Thy Father and open Heaven to those poor souls who languish far from Thee. Amen.

V. Grant unto them, O Lord, eternal rest;
R. And let perpetual light shine upon them
V. May they rest in peace.
R. Amen.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

A Prayer for Priests

Whenever a particular priest is in need of our prayers, I will be posting a Prayer for Priests.
O Jesus, Eternal Priest, keep all Your priests within the shelter of Your Sacred Heart where none may harm them.

Keep unstained their anointed hands which daily touch Your Sacred Body.

Keep unsullied their lips purpled with Your Precious Blood.

Keep pure and unearthly their hearts sealed with the sublime marks of Your glorious priesthood.

Let Your holy love surround them and shield them from the world's contagion.

Bless their labors and abundant fruit, and may the souls to whom they ministered here below be their joy and consolation, and in Heaven their beautiful and everlasting crown. Amen.

O Mary, Queen of the clergy, pray for us; obtain for us a number of holy priests. Amen.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Quote - Love of Neighbor

Picture courtesy of Ave Maria

Mahalo to Sue C. for sharing this quote.

Love for your neighbor consists of three things:
to desire the greater good of everyone;
to do what good we can when we can;
to bear, excuse, and hide other's faults.

St. John Vianney

Monday, October 30, 2006

Halloween - The Time to Celebrate the Saints - Light, Not the Devil and Darkness

Many good Catholic families now gather on All Saints Day or its eve with children dressed in costumes of their favorite saints. I’ve seen this done for years now with good Catholic families and find it most enjoyable as do the children who are then educated into the lives, the Christian virtues of the Saints who become their heroes.

Rather than go on “tricks or treats” journeys through the neighborhood, good Catholic families with growing children gather at one another’s homes with their small children, even teenagers, and come dressed in costumes known to describe some saint. The older children give clues from the lives of the Saint they are impersonating or imitating. At first historical facts from their Saint’s life are related as others attempt to state or guess who the Saint is. The facts become clearer and clearer as more and more is related from the life of a Saint. - More evidence is given - until someone, or sometimes many, suddenly shout the name of the Saint. For the very little children dressed as saints some adult will reador state the clues to help identify the particular Saint the child has chosen. The children, often weeks in advance, sometimesmonths before - are found reading about Saints. They are studying the lives of Saints trying to decide which Saints they should come in costoms to the Halloween gathering for others to discover. Older children can usually give their own clues. The clues attempt to educate in the Christian virtues and invite the intercessory prayers of the Saints.

After all the Saints have been identified, the young people have a party with the treats which the adults provide.

The children are then well prepared to observe ALL SAINTS DAY with the proper spirit.

It is all part of the gradual re-emerging Catholic culture among young families today. Did you know it is again becoming fashionable to have larger families??? Almost all the Catholic families I know through the Fatima Family Apostolate International believe in having children, large families. That is true of the Catholic families which have moved to Alabama to be near the Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament and Monastery of Our Lady of the Angels - where I offer the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass each day. Interesting that it was the Child Jesus who asked Mother Angelica to build a Temple in His honor. It is a privilege for me to know so many good and large families through the Fatima Family Apostolate and the Shrine here which honors the Child Jesus.

The Fatima Family Apostolate - on this website - has available four volumes of SAINTS AND HEROES SPEAK. Pope John Paul II said we must return to instilling in children and youth knowledge of and devotion to the Saints. That is why I wrote the four volumes for young people.

Father Robert J. Fox

Sunday, October 29, 2006

The Mass

"It would be easier for the world to exist without the sun than without the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass."
...Saint Padre Pio
Yesterday I woke up early to attend Mass in honor of Our Blessed Mother as well as the Saints Simon and Jude. However, there was no priest present. Our deacon led the Communion Service. It was a nice service but that is all it was...a service. No Mass! Thank God we could receive Holy Communion.

Throughout the entire time, all I kept imagining was a world without the sacrifice of the Mass. It was scary. Then I came to my senses and knew God would never permit that to happen. But it is up to us as my friend Linda reminded me today, to pray everyday for our priests.

On the other hand, the other day, I missed morning Mass. I called up my friend Fr. D. and asked him if I could go over for confession. As usual, Father said "Sure, come on over". After Confession, I asked Father, who is a very elderly and infirmed priest, if he had celebrated the Mass yet. He said no. But he celebrated it for three of us who were present there. God is so good.

God bless our priests.

From the Diocese of Phoenix - The Chalice Apostolate

My friend Becca is so blessed to live in Bishop Olmsted's Diocese. She recently shared the following with me. They are doing this apostolate in her parish:


This is an opportunity to promote and pray for vocations to the priesthood, permanent diaconate, and religious life. It is also an occasion to remember, support and pray for those currently serving as priests, deacons and religious
(sisters, brothers).


You will be presented a small chalice at the end of a Sunday or weekday Mass (or privately, if you wish). Keep it in your home for two (2) weeks. Make sure it is visible and in a place of honor (fireplace-mantel, dining room table, etc.)

Pray daily for vocations; every time you see it pray for your parish clergy and religious. Suggested prayers and further instructions will be supplied. When you have guests at your home, explain its purpose and witness. After two weeks
return it to the Sacristy (Saturday evening/Sunday morning) or the office (weekdays).

If you are interested, call the office and leave your NAME, ADDRESS, PHONE NUMBER, and a convenient time to reach you. Our coordinator will contact you and give you more details. We prefer that you be a registered year-round parishioner or winter parishioner. While the chalice is not “valuable” in the monetary sense, it is a sacred vessel and we need to keep it secure and respected.