Wednesday, September 17, 2008

TheSolemnity of the Stigmata of St. Francis of Assisi

The Stigmata of our Holy Father Francis- from the beginning of his conversion our Father St. Francis had a very great devotion and veneration for Christ crucified and never ceased to preach this devotion till his death. While rapt in deep contemplation in the year 1224 on Mt. Alverna, Christ the Lord by a miracle imprinted the marks of his passion on the saint's body. Pope Benedict XI permitted the Franciscan Order to celebrate annually on this day the memory of this extraordinary even attested by reliable witnesses.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Franciscan Martyrs of the French Revolution

They are Fr.John Francis Burte, OFM Conv, Apollinaris Morel de Posat,OFM Cap., and Severin Girault,T.O.R. who along with many other martyrs refused to take the schismatic oath prescribed by civil law. They were unwavering in their loyalty to the Catholic faith. This upheaval of the 18th c. in France wrought havoc in all things sacred and profane and vented its fury against the Church and her servants. Some unscrupulous men came into power who concealed their hatred for the Church under the deceptive guise of philosophy. They wanted to uproot the Christian faith completely. It seemed like the early persecutions had returned. The Church became resplendent with bright new crowns of martyrdom. Fr. John Baptist Triquiere, a Conventual Friar who was renowned for his priestly zeal and Franciscan way of life openly declared himself a follower of St. Francis of Assisi and said "I keep faith with Christ till death."
Some of those martyred were beatified by Pope Pius XI and his successor Pius XII enrolled the rest among the blessed.
Lord, God, grant to us to pursue with fitting devotion the faith of blessed John Francis, Severin and their companion martyrs. They served your Church faithfully till the end and merited to receive the palm of martyrdom. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.