Saturday, April 28, 2007

Feast Day - St. Louis Marie Grignon of Montfort

Louis Marie Grignon of Montfort

Major Works by St. Louis de Montfort:

The Love of Eternal Wisdom
True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin

Other Works

The Secret of Mary
A Letter to the Friends of the Cross
The Admirable Secret of the Rosary
Methods of Reciting the Rosary
Excerpts from The Love of Eternal Wisdom

CLICK HERE to read more about this saint.

Saintly Quote - Doing God's Will

St. Gabriel
Thanks Sue!
I will attempt day by day to break my will into pieces. I want to do God's Holy Will, not my own!
Saint Gabriel of the Sorrowful Mother (1838-1862)

Friday, April 27, 2007

A Guide For Daily Living

Mother of Sorrows

My friend Sue shared a wonderful excerpt from a very informative Catholic website called The Seven Dolors of Mary. The following Rule of St. Benedict is from that site's page on A Quick Guide for Making a Good Confession.

...Do not kill.

Do not commit adultery.

Do not steal.

Do not covet.

Do not bear false witness.

To honor all men.

Do not do to another what one would not have done to oneself.

Deny oneself, in order to follow Christ.

To chastise the body.

Not to seek soft living.

To love fasting.

To relieve the poor.

To clothe the naked.

To visit the sick.

To bury the dead.

To help the afflicted.

To console the sorrowing.

To avoid worldly conduct.

To prefer nothing to the love of Christ.

Not to yield to anger.

Not to nurse a grudge.

Not to hold guile in one's heart.

Not to make a feigned, (false show of), peace.

Not to forsake charity.

Not to swear, lest perchance one forswear oneself. (to swear falsely).

To utter truth from heart and mouth.

Not to render evil for evil.

To do no wrong to anyone, and to bear patiently wrongs done to oneself.

To love one's enemies.

Not to render cursing for cursing, but rather blessing.

To bear persecution for justice sake.

Not to be proud.

Not be a wine bibber (habitual drinker).

Not be a glutton.

Not be somnolent, (inclined to sleep).

Not be slothful.

Not be a grumbler or complainer.

Not be a detractor, (slanderer or false witness).

To put ones hope in God.

To attribute to God, and not to self, whatever good one sees in oneself.

But to recognize always that the evil is one's own doing, and to impute it to oneself.

To fear the day of Judgment. To dread Hell.

To keep constant guard over the actions of one's life.

To desire eternal life with all spiritual longing.

To keep death daily before one's eyes.

To know for certain that God sees one everywhere.

When evil thoughts come into one's heart, to dash them at once on the rock of Christ and to manifest them to one's spiritual advisor, (confessor).

To keep one's mouth from evil and depraved talk.

Not to love much speaking.

Not to speak vain words or such as move to laughter.

To listen gladly to holy reading.

To apply oneself frequently to prayer.

Daily in one's prayer, with tears and sighs, to confess one's past sins to God.

To amend those sins for the future.

Not to fulfill the desires of the flesh.

To hate one's own will.

To obey in all things the commands of the abbot, even though he himself, (which God forbid), should act otherwise, remembering the Lord's precept: What they say, do ye, but what they do, do ye not. Not to wish to be called holy before one is holy, but first to be holy, that one may more truly be called so.

To fulfill God's commandments daily in one's deeds.

To love chastity.

To hate no man.

Not to be jealous.

Not to give way to envy.

Not to love contention, (conflict).

To shun vainglory, (boastfulness).

To reverence the old.

To love the young.

To pray for one's enemies in the love of Christ.

To make peace with one's adversary before sundown.

And never to despair of God's Mercy...

Father Robert Fox's 52nd Anniversary as a Priest and His Reflections on the Priesthood

Picture courtesy of THIS SITE

Father Fox of Fatima Family Apostolate recently celebrated his 52nd anniversary. As you may know, he is the priest who would take the young people on pilgrimages to Fatima. He is a prolific writer and also runs that wonderful magazine Immaculate Heart Messenger

I hope you take a moment to visit his blog and leave a note of congratulations or best wishes in his comment section. It is priests like Father Fox, so devoted to our blessed Mother and to the Church, that has inspired the younger generations of Catholics to be more orthodox and faithful to the Church and the Magisterium.

May God bless you abundantly Father Fox!

CLICK HERE for Father Fox's blog post.

The Real Presence - Today's Gospel John 6:52

Eucharist Picture courtesy of Aida Yared and used with permission.

The following is from New Advent John:6:48-59
6:48. I am the bread of life.
Ego sum panis vitae

6:49. Your fathers did eat manna in the desert: and are dead.
Patres vestri manducaverunt in deserto manna et mortui sunt

6:50. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven: that if any man eat of it, he may not die.
Hic est panis de caelo descendens ut si quis ex ipso manducaverit non moriatur

6:51. I am the living bread which came down from heaven.
Ego sum panis vivus qui de caelo descendi

6:52. If any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, for the life of the world.
Si quis manducaverit ex hoc pane vivet in aeternum et panis quem ego dabo caro mea est pro mundi vita

6:53. The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying: How can this man give us his flesh to eat?
Litigabant ergo Iudaei ad invicem dicentes quomodo potest hic nobis carnem suam dare ad manducandum

6:54. Then Jesus said to them: Amen, amen, I say unto you: except you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you shall not have life in you.
Dixit ergo eis Iesus amen amen dico vobis nisi manducaveritis carnem Filii hominis et biberitis eius sanguinem non habetis vitam in vobis

6:55. He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood hath everlasting life: and I will raise him up in the last day.
Qui manducat meam carnem et bibit meum sanguinem habet vitam aeternam et ego resuscitabo eum in novissimo die

6:56. For my flesh is meat indeed: and my blood is drink indeed.
Caro enim mea vere est cibus et sanguis meus vere est potus

6:57. He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood abideth in me: and I in him.
Qui manducat meam carnem et bibit meum sanguinem in me manet et ego in illo

6:58. As the living Father hath sent me and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, the same also shall live by me.
Sicut misit me vivens Pater et ego vivo propter Patrem et qui manducat me et ipse vivet propter me

6:59. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Not as your fathers did eat manna and are dead. He that eateth this bread shall live for ever.
Hic est panis qui de caelo descendit non sicut manducaverunt patres vestri manna et mortui sunt qui manducat hunc panem vivet in aeternum

Thursday, April 26, 2007


Mahalo to my dear friend Laura who shared this via email.
A man and his dog were walking along a road. The man was enjoying the scenery, when it suddenly occurred to him that he was dead. He remembered dying, and that the dog walking beside him had been dead for years.

He wondered where the road was leading them. After a while, they came to a high, white stone wall along one side of the road It looked like fine marble. At the top of a long hill, it was broken by a tall arch that glowed in the sunlight.

When he was standing before it he saw a magnificent gate in the arch that looked like mother-of-pearl, and the street that led to the gate looked like pure gold. He and the dog walked toward the gate, and as he got closer, he saw a man at a desk to one side.

When he was close enough, he called out, "Excuse me, where are we?"

"This is Heaven, sir," the man answered. "Wow! Would you happen to have some water?" the man asked.

"Of course, sir. Come right in, and I'll have some ice water brought right up."

The man gestured, and the gate began to open. "Can my friend," gesturing toward his dog, "come in, too?" the traveler asked.

"I'm sorry, sir, but we don't accept pets." The man thought a moment and then turned back toward the road and continued the way he had been going with his dog. After another long walk, and at the top of another long hill, he came to a dirt road leading through a farm gate that looked as if it had never been closed. There was no fence. As he approached the gate, he saw a man inside, leaning against a tree and reading a book.

"Excuse me!" he called to the man.

"Do you have any water?"
"Yeah, sure, there's a pump over there, come on in."
"How about my friend here?" the traveler gestured to the dog.

"There should be a bowl by the pump."

They went through the gate, and sure enough, there was an old-fashioned hand pump with a bowl beside it. The traveler filled the water bowl and took a long drink himself, then he gave some to the dog. When they were full, he and the dog walked back toward the man who was standing by the tree.

"What do you call this place?" the traveler asked.

"This is Heaven," he answered. "Well, that's confusing," the traveler said. "The man down the road said that was Heaven, too." "Oh, you mean the place with the gold street and pearly gates?

Nope. That's hell."
"Doesn't it make you mad for them to use your name like that?"

"No, we're just happy that they screen out the folks who would leave their best friends behind."

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Beautiful Traditional Catholic Music

Immaculate Conception
Picture courtesy of Aida Yared and used with permission.

My friend Shana was kind enough to share the link to this beautiful site with me.
Robert Parsons was an English composer of liturgical music in the late Renaissance (Tudor era, he died in 1570). Here are some of his compositions to download or to print for a choir presented by Columbia University's Vox Ensamble. Live concert, so occasional coughs or paper rustling is heard - but boy - is this gorgeous!!

If I were you, I'd go for the finest piece in the collection and listen to the absolutely heavenly Ave Maria (listed under 'Sound Recordings')

Under the title, you can also select "English Works" by the same author,
and go to that page with more music for you do download and enjoy. Love
the Te Deum and the Magnificat!

In the Sacred & Immaculate Hearts - shana
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.


Saintly Quotes - Our Crosses

St. Max Kolbe and Mary
Thanks Sue!
"Crosses teach us, give us further merit, crush us, but at the same time they exalt us spiritually and teach us not to trust our own skills and strength, but only the Immaculata. This is why God in His mercy sends these crosses."
~ St. Maximillian Kolbe

Update and Prayer Request for the Dominican Sisters of Union City, NJ

PrayersMelanie was kind enough to post the last update in the comments section. Today she emailed me another update. Please continue to pray for these nuns!
Today I followed up my contact with another phone call to Sr. Carol Marie OP, their sub-prioress. And it seems appropriate to report to you what I learned.

There are five women left. Sr. Carol keeps things going as the sub-prioress. Her prioress, Sr. Mary Jordan, remains in a nursing home. Sr. Carol assures me that Sr. Jordan receives an inperson visit at least once a week from Sr. Carol, and she phones her prioress every day. In this way, Sr. Jordan continues to direct and decide for the community of nuns, although she is outside the monastery itself.

I got things a little mixed up I think about the sisters who needed medical
attention. Here is the latest version. Sr. Mary Gemma OP can actually get up and walk now. For a period of time, Sr. Carol had to carry meals to Sr. Gemma's cell because she could not get up and walk to the refectory. Professional caregivers have been visiting the monastery to nurse Sr. Gemma and do some kind of physiotheraphy with her. The attention has paid off. Sr. Gemma has a walker, and with the walker she can go from her cell to the refectory and back, joining Sr. Carol and Sr. Maria Aquinas OP for meals.

Soon the caregivers will be discharged from their monastery visits, and Sr. Carol tells me that Sr. Gemma -- frail physically, but very spirited and lively on the psychological/mental level -- gives thanks to God Almighty that those therapists aren't coming in her room anymore because now she can actually have some peace and quiet for a change.

That leaves the fifth nun, Sr. Mary Charlotte OP. More serious than I
realized. She has a cancer diagnosis and will shortly begin chemotherapy.
That course of treatment will go a month, God willing. Sr. Charlotte
has been admitted to a Union City nursing home in order to undergo
treatment for her cancer. Sr. Carol remarked to me, that until her illness and hospitalization, Sr. Charlotte had been extremely active and the
community depended very much on her efforts; without her, it is particularly hard to keep everything going.

The closing of the Union City monastery is not formal and official at
the moment. There is still all the formal communicating to do. Sr.
Jordan, the prioress, is leaning toward leaving as it is so hard to keep the big old monastery going with no new vocations. However, it is some time, Sr. Carol says, since the last visitation by the Eastern US Dominican Provincial prior who is the vicar who reports back to the Promoter and the Master of the Order in Europe. So Father is expected at the monastery again in the near future, and he will be the go-between for the nuns and the European curia.

It is all proceeding very slowly.

Well that is all my news. You know, I have never met the nuns. Reading
about them in MONIALIBUS (online at to find it click onto
English-language and then Nuns) touched me so deeply that I wanted to

But when I ask the sub-prioress about coming to the monastery to meet
them in person, she insists, Wait a month until maybe we have got Sr.
Charlotte back from's too hard for us without her. One of these days I will meet them somehow. Thanks for listening, Melanie T.,
Quincy, Massachusetts

Monday, April 23, 2007

Feast of St. George

St. George Picture courtesy of Aida Yared and used with permission.

Happy Feast Day to my brother in law George and my little nephew Georgie!

Heroic Catholic soldier and defender of your Faith, you dared to criticize a tyrannical Emperor and were subjected to horrible torture. You could have occupied a high military position but you preferred to die for your Lord. Obtain for us the great grace of heroic Christian courage that should mark soldiers of Christ. Amen.
Above prayer from THIS SITE

Honoring Our Fallen Heroes

Half StaffPicture courtesy of NASA

The Honolulu Advertiser reports the following from the AP:

An Army sergeant complained in a rare opinion article that the U.S. flag flew at half-staff last week at the largest U.S. base in Afghanistan for those killed at Virginia Tech but the same honor is not given to fallen U.S. troops here and in Iraq.

This blogger thinks it is an excellent idea so we are posting a flag at half staff in honor of all our brave military who have died, defending our freedom. May they rest in peace.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

The Three Degrees in Accomplishment of God's Will

Divine Mercy
The following is from Notebook 1, page 195, paragraph 444 of St. Faustina's Diary:

According to Sister Faustina's confessor Fr. Sopocko, there are three degrees in the accomplishment of God's will.
1st Degree: the soul carries out all rules and statutes pertaining to external observance

2nd Degree: the soul accepts interior inspirations and carries them out faithfully

3rd Degree: the soul, abandoned to the will of God, allows Him to dispose of it freely and God does with it as He pleases, and it is a docile tool in His hands.

The Preciousness of Silence

Picture courtesy of Aida Yared and used with permission.

Thanks Sue!

"Lord, set a guard over my mouth;
keep watch at the door of my lips." Ps 141:3

"But Jesus was silent." Mt 26:63

The Silence is Meekness.
When you do not defend yourself against offenses;
When you do not claim your rights;
When you let God defend you;
The Silence is Meekness.

The Silence is Mercy.
When you do not reveal the faults of your brothers to others;
When you readily forgive without inquiring into the past;
When you do not judge, but pray in your heart;
The Silence is Mercy.

The Silence is Patience.
When you accept suffering not with grumbling but joyfully;
When you do not look for human consolations;
When you do not become too anxious, but wait in patience for the seed to germinate;
The Silence is Patience.

The Silence is Humility.
When there is no competition;
When you consider the other person to be better than yourself;
When you let your brothers emerge, grow and mature;
When you joyfully abandon all to the Lord;
When your actions may be misinterpreted;
When you leave to others the glory of the enterprise;
The Silence is Humility.

The Silence is Faith.
When you keep quiet because you know that the Lord will act;
When you renounce the voice of the world to remain in the presence of the Lord;
When you do not labour yourself to be understood;
because it is enough for you to know that the Lord understands you;
The Silence is Faith.

The Silence is Adoration.
When you embrace the cross without asking "Why?";
The Silence is Adoration.

"But Jesus was silent."

From the Missionaries of Charity Prayer Book

More Catholic Blinkies

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Movie Review - The Queen

The Queen

The other day I went to the movies with a friend and we watched The Queen. Although another friend of my family had mentioned in passing that he really enjoyed the movie, I had no expectations at all other than it dealt with Queen Elizabeth II.

The movie actually is about the time period when Tony Blair is elected prime minister and Princess Diana dies tragically and unexpectedly. It delves into the relationship that is formed by the newly elect PM and the queen, by the way they handle the princess' death.

Before watching the movie, you could say that I liked Princess Di. After all, we watched her transformed from a awkward young bride to a cultured and sophisticated royal. More importantly, she seemed kind. I found Queen Elizabeth II non-interesting as a person. I did like Tony Blair. I found him to have a commanding way about him as well as charming.

Well, as the movie unfolded before my eyes, I was struck by the true character of Queen Elizabeth. She was no longer an uninteresting and dowdy old queen but a sensitive woman who had to make tough decisions. And for that, she was criticized by the Brits who constantly compared her to their beloved and modern princess.

The movie portrayed the queen as a real person. She had a hands on approach to daily life. For instance, she drove her own Range Rover; she took long walks with her dogs. She was portrayed as a humble woman when she asked permission to use the phone in her own kitchen. She showed her sensitive side when she reads the notes left by some mourners that must her hurt her deeply by their insensitive words attacking her personally.

In retrospect, she seemed to have been judged inaccurately by the people at the time of Princess Di's death. If she didn't overreact in trying to make a "big deal" of the funeral and memorial, it was because it was her way...the traditional English monarchy life she had always known.

At the end of the movie, I felt a new wave of respect and admiration hit me for this queen. Maybe it was the way they were portrayed but as my admiration grew for Queen Elizabeth, my respect for Prince Philip and Cherie Blair waned a bit. He being portrayed as too critical of Princess Di and somewhat mean spirited and Mrs. Blair as trying hard not to follow protocol as well as being too critical of the monarchy.

If you haven't already seen it, I hope you take the time to watch it. It is mostly dialogue, with actual footage of the princess taken around the time of her death. A group of young local kids walked out midway through the movie. It may have been too slow moving for them.

I understand the actress who played the queen, Helen Mirren, won the Oscar for Best Actress. I wouldn't have expected anything else. Her performance was magnificent! Last time I saw her in a movie was in Mosquito Coast where she played the long-suffering wife of Harrison Ford.

The video is being released this week and if you click the title above you can go to the official website to watch the trailer.

Eucharistic Quote - St. Pius X, The Pope of the Eucharist

St. Pius XPicture courtesy of Joyce Images

In a little booklet I am currently reading, The Most Blessed Sacrament by Fr. Stephano Manelli and published by the Children of the Father Foundation, I have found a treasure trove of Eucharist quotes which i will be sharing with you.
"The devotion to the Eucharist, is the most noble, because it has God as its object; it is the most profitable for salvation, because It gives us the Author of Grace; it is the sweetest, because the Lord is Sweetness Itself."