Monday, August 26, 2013

21st Week Ordinary Time

Mass of today: Entrance Antiphon- "Turn you ear,O Lord, and answer me; save the servant who trusts in you, my God. Have Mercy on me, O Lord, for I cry to you all day long. Responsorial Psalm- Ps149 - For the Lord loves his people, and he adorns the lowly wth victory (this line struck me, the most of today) Communion Antiphon- The earth is replete with the fruits of your work, O Lord; you bring forth bread from the earth, and wine to cheer the heart. Prayer after Communion- Complete within us O Lord,we pray, the healing work of your mercy and graciously perfect ans sustain us,so that in all things we may please you, Through Christ our Lord. Amen. HOW TIME HAS SLIPPED AWAY. I still have interest in blogging,but have not been aware that I have not done this in so many years! Time to start again, in this Year of Faith, I have much to share and to complete from my Journal of my 2010 Pilgrimage.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

How long it has been since I Blogged, wow! 9/16/2012

God continues to be present to me, in this year, and through 2011 past.There is so much that has changed in my life from 2010, after my 8-day Franciscan Hermitage Contemplative Pilgrimage in Italy. What I am sharing from the reflections of the Word Among Us magazine of Sept.2012, I am much like St. Peter. First,I have to admit, I make mistakes and hurt people, even when I have good intentions.Thank God for his mercy and patience! Second, I need to know that the Holy Spirit wants to show me and others how to live. St. Paul tells us that no matter how inscrutable the wisdom of God may be,"we have the mind of Christ." 1 Corinthinians 2:14,16 we do learn to discern spiritual things. Peter learned overtime how to discern God's voice. He learned how to sort through his intentions and be a clearer instrument of God's grace. We can too, by keep telling ourselves: "I have the mind of Christ. I believe that the Holy Spirit is my guide." With this small statement of faith, you can develop the gift of discernment. "Lord, show me your ways so that I may discern your will."

Sunday, May 1, 2011

DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY & Beatification of Blessed John Paul 2

This is the homily from our Associate Pastor of our Parish for this day of Divine Mercy Sunday and reflections from the Gospel of today.
Jesus finds the apostles in 'hiding',immobilized by the terrible realization of the death of their beloved leader.They may be thinking that they are next. The disciples feel that their world is out of control. Everything seems lost, confused,mixed up,but Jesus assures them that such is not the case as he appears and says PEACE BE WITH YOU. In fact, he is there to offer them the gift of deep and unshakable confidence. In spite of dire appearances, all is well. Though all seemed lost on the cross, there is a hope in the Resurrection, and he invites them to TRUST.
And Jesus gives them an avenue to that trust, because he entrusts the apostles with a sacred mystery. That ministry is reconciliation. Look at the Gospel. Jesus breathes on the apostles. In the Scripture. where else does God breathe? At creation,he breathes into the nostrils of man, giving life. And now, he breathes again, telling them, "receive the Holy Spirit,whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven, and whose sins you retain they are retained." HOW IMPORTANT IS THIS! ONE OF FEW REFERENCES TO GOD OR JESUS BREATHING ON PEOPLE,AND IT IS IN THE CONTEXT OF FORGIVENESS. The apostles here are given the power and authority to forgive sins. And from that forgiveness comes healing.
Today is Divine Mercy Sunday. It is on this day that we ponder the mercy, the forgiveness,the compassion of our God. On this Sunday, we remember the compassion of Our Lord for us through the writings of St. Faustina Maria Kowalska, a Polish nun, 1905-1938, and canonized on April 30,2000 by Pope John Paul 2. St. Faustina received visions of Our Lord, who proclaimed his mercy for his people. She wrote her communication with him down in a diary,and it is published worldwide for all to read.
We ponder his presence with us in a world where we feel lost, confused, or chaotic. Jesus told St. Faustina that this Feast of Mercy would be very special day when "all the divine floodgates through which graces flow are opened".
About the feastday "Divine Mercy Sunday", Jesus said "..tell the whole world about My inconceivable mercy. I desire that the Feast of Mercy be a refuge and shelter for all souls, and especially poor sinners. On that day the very depths of My tender mercy are open. I pour out a whole ocean of graces upon the souls who approach the Fount of My Mercy. On that day all the divine floodgates through which graces flow are opened. Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though its sins be as scarlet...Mankind will not have peace until it turns to the Fount of My Mercy".
Our Lord said "to this fountain of My mercy, the Blood and Water which came forth from My Heart always flows down upon you soul.." and "every time you go to confession, immerse yourself entirely in My mercy with great trust, so that I may pour the bounty of My grace upon your soul".
As we celebrate the Resurrection today, we are confident in the mercy of God. It is His mercy and grace which will see us through this life when, like the apostles, we feel that everything is mixed up and chaotic. It is His mercy that will strengthen us and give us PEACE. As we celebrate the Resurrection, I pray that through the Eucharist and the Sacrament of Reconciliation, we might know the hope and trust that Our Lord calls us to, and receive his comfort and peace in our hearts. Jesus, I trust in you.
May each of us strive to put our complete trust and our hope in the resurrection of Our Lord,so that we might be filled with hope, peace, and joy.

1905-1938 AD

Feast: October 5

"Pure love ... knows that only one thing is needed to please God: to do even the smallest things out of great love - love, and always love."
- Diary of St. Faustina, 140

“Have confidence, My child. Do not lose heart in coming for pardon, for I am always ready to forgive you.
As often as you beg for it, you glorify My mercy.” - Diary of St. Faustina, 1488

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Advent Festival of Lessons and Carols

The service tonight was spectacular, presented by the University students, Franciscan Universtiy. I have attended this service, but I think this was one quite moving, flawless singing and organ accompaniment, and timely in this First Week of Advent. I was presented by the Schola Cantorum Franciscana & the Franciscan University Chorale.
The carols sung at the Advent Service of Lessons and Carols,and througout the subsequent liturgical seasons of Christmas and Epiphany, have deep roots in the tradition of Christian worship. By the beginning of the 15th Century, carol-singing had become an intregral element of seasonal worship, particulary in Britain.
Though carols, indeed the celebration of Christmas itself, were banned in England by the Puritan regime of Oliver Cromwell during the 17th century, they were preserved and augmented in the New World, and eventually restored as a beloved tradition in Britain.
While the terms "carol" and "hymn" may overlap, the two genres are, in fact, different. Hymn texts tend to didacaticism; while the purpose of the carol - one that stems from its medieval analogue, the mystery play - is a narrative. For unlettered folk of the Middle Ages, the carol, like a stained glass panel or a fresco tableau, depicted the momentous event of Christ's Incarnation. And, in the honor of the saint who may be called the father of the Christian ode to joy, St. Francis of Assisi, the nature of most carols in both "hilarious" (joyous) adn reverential.
Centuries ago, carol-singing celebrated several seasons of the Church year. The custom has come, however, to be associated with the seasons fo Advent and Christmas.

The Festival of Lessons and Carols was developed as a non-liturgical service for Christmas by the rector of England's Truro Cathedral in the 19th century.
The service became wide spread when it transferred to King's College, Cambridge, England, where its annual performance is broadcast around the world.
The service's popularity has also led to the an adaptation for Advent, which, given that Franciscan University students are away during Christmas, is what we celebrate each year at the University. It has come to be a tradition to present this Festival before the end of the semester and final exams. God Bless the directors and students for the great effort in their performance.
(text from the program )

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Nine Days That Changed the World

Last evening at 7:00pm,I attended a new film about Pope John Paul II and his nine-day pilgrimage to Poland in 1979 that led to the fall of Communism in Europe. The screening was free and open to the public at Franciscan University of Steubenville, Steubenville, Ohio. The film was produced by Newt Gingrich and his wife, Callista. They introduced the film and explained what led them to produce this 94-minute documentary that traces the historic visit of Pope John Paul II to Poland the year after his election to the pontificate.
The ramifications of the pope's visit to his homeland were enormous, and the film convincingly shows that those few days in Poland set in motion the series of events that played a pivotal role in overthrowing Communist rule in Europe. Newt Gingrich, who converted to Catholicism in 2009 due to his wife's witness and an encounter with Pope Benedict XVI, presents the story of an extraordinary example of "freedom through faith."
Callista Gringich has stated " We really do try to echo Pope John Paul's message that no state government can come between you and God. And that our only freedom, our true freedom, can only be achieved and sustained through our faith."
The film used never-before-seen film footage of the Pope's visit. The Communist authorities were fearful of the impact of the pope's visit to Poland, snd so they did everything to minimize its effect. The Gringriches discovered that the Polish bishops, not trusting the Communist authoriies, gave video cameras to people in the crowd. telling them to record the event. The footage was made part of the Polish National Radio.
The movie was inspired in part due to the recent media negative coverage of the Church.
Newt Gringrich, well aware of how scandal can obscure great achievements, decided to highlight one of the greatest lasting contributions of Pope John Paul II.
The movie is produced by Citizens United ( a group active in promoting the Traditional American values.)
To schedule a screening, for more information, or to order the DVD, see the web site:

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Discernment of Vocations - 3rd Day of Hermitage

Saturday is set aside by the Church for Our Lady, to honor her and Hail her as Mother of us all, in the New Covenant. The Mass at Our Lady of Sorrows Monastery(Toronto, Ohio) was celebrated by a young priest who spoke in his homily of his discernment to Priesthood and answer to that call.
His homily was timely, as the Franciscan Sisters of Our Sorrowful Mother of Penance, were holding a Discernment weekend for young women visiting the Order to help decide if Our Lord is calling them to religious life.
Mary's FIAT, Father's fiat, and my own fiat, a call from Jesus to live in deeper union is always present. To turn from our sins,to seek & follow the Lord, where He may call us to live & serve, to deeper and abiding prayer and penance. We have always the model of Our Lady to say YES, and when one says 'Yes', God will give us His Love, Peace, and Joy.
Included in the intercessions of today, I pray for a young man TA, who is discerning Priesthod. experienced a new Joy in my heart to hear this priest share, knowing that God is answering the collective Prayers of the Church for Vocations to the Priesthood.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

St. Camilla Battista

I recently visited Italy while on pilgrimage, and met the Poor Clare Sisters of Camerino, Italy which is about 30 minutes from Assisi, Italy. I rejoice with them today for their foundress, St. Camilla Battista Varano was canonized by Pope Benedict XVI in St. Peter's Square.
Saint Camilla Battista - her story from writings of Bret Thoman sfo, the Pilgrimage Tour manager of St.Francis Pilgrimages of Peachtree, Georgia and a good Franciscan brother to me.
Camilla was the name given to the girl born (illegitimately) on April 9, 1458 to Giulio Cesare of Varano, the powerful duke and lord of Camerino. Just the same, she was loved by the duke's wife who raised her together with her own children. As a child, she was vivacious and playful. She grew up immersed in the high culture typical of the splendid Renaissance court: she was exposed to poets, historians, philosophers, and painters; she learned Latin and read the classics; she learned how to dance, paint, and play musical instruments. Her future was destined to an arranged marriage to strengthen the family dynasty, but when Camilla was eight years old, her life took an unexpected turn.

A Franciscan friar preached a sermon during Lent exhorting his listeners to shed a little tear on Good Friday in memory of Christ's Passion. An enthusiastic little girl, Camilla vowed to shed a tear every Friday, a devotion she maintained for many years. By doing so, the Holy Spirit entered her soul and she began to perceive something in the Cross of Jesus much more valuable than the worldly pleasures and intrigues around her. She later discovered a booklet with a meditation on the Passion of Christ. She prayed and meditated, fasted frequently, mortified her body, confessed often, and met friars for spiritual direction.

The following is information about the Poor Clares in the U.S.A. (taken from a website of the Poor Clares in Ohio, USA

The Franciscan Family
Our origins date back to the 13th century, to the Franciscan movement initiated by St. Francis and St. Clare in Assisi, Italy. This movement which, in the beginning, was simply to live faithfully the gospel of Jesus Christ in brotherhood and sisterhood, eventually became the three Franciscan Orders: the Friars Minor, the Poor Sisters (Poor Clares), and the Secular Franciscans.
Our Holy Mother St. Clare
St. Clare was a noble woman of the Italian town of Assisi at the end of the 12th and the beginning of the 13th centuries. Known from her youth as a devout girl, Clare was touched to the heart by the preaching of her contemporary St. Francis of Assisi. On the night after Palm Sunday in 1212, Clare left her family home and followed Francis in giving herself to living a poor, simple, Gospel life at the little church of San Damiano on the outskirts of Assisi. Although her family was initially furious with her decision, many young women followed Clare's example within a short time, including a number of members of her own family.

Our Community
The Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration is one of the several branches of the Order of St. Clare. It was begun in France in 1854 by Marie Claire Bouillevaux in response to her call to contemplation and adoration of the Eucharist in a spirit of praise and thanksgiving.

This community, first known as the Franciscan Nuns of the Blessed Sacrament, adopted the contemplative way of life, and were given the privilege of solemn exposition of the Eucharist.

In 1921, the first American foundation was established in Cleveland, Ohio. Several other monasteries have since been established in this country and in India.

Devotion to Christ in the Eucharist is and always has been the central element in the Franciscan family. For the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration, this devotion is expressed in a particular way through adoration of the exposed Eucharist. This is a special aspect of our effort to live out our call to offer praise and thanksgiving to God with and through Jesus on behalf of all people throughout the world.