Saturday, May 6, 2017 First Saturday

The Church throughout all Judea, Galilee, and Samaria was at peace. She was being built up and walked in the fear of the Lord, and with the consolation of the Holy Spirit she grew in numbers.


2 Samuel, Chapter 14, Verse 14-15
14 We must indeed die; we are then like water that is poured out on the ground and cannot be gathered up. Yet, though God does not bring back to life, he does devise means so as not to banish anyone from him. 15 And now, if I have presumed to speak to the king of this matter, it is because the people have given me cause to fear. And so your servant thought: ‘Let me speak to the king. Perhaps he will grant the petition of his servant.

Here David is in a quandary; his beloved son has murdered his brother and should be punished. Yet…how can David save his living son and still be just. Joab brings in a wise woman who points out God does not bring the dead to life but devises ways of returning the banished.

Justice and Mercy[1]

A specific feature of the ethics of St. Thomas is that it puts compassion and justice into the closest connection possible to each other. “Justice without mercy is cruel”, says Thomas. But, “Mercy without justice is the mother of dissolution"—and, one might add, therefore cruel as well. This close connection between justice and mercy is not sufficiently obvious in human life. The reason for this is not merely the fact that people are often merciless. Rather, it is much more due to the finite character of human existence, which makes all the virtues in the life of the soul appear to be separated from each other and their exercise separate as well. This of course also applies to the virtues of justice and charity, the juxtaposition of which may highlight this fact of separation with particular clarity, so that justice and mercy may sometimes appear to us as as downright opposing intentions. The situation is different with God. “The work of divine justice always presupposes the work of mercy and it founded in it,” says Thomas. So if God is merciful, then He is not in opposition to justice.

Both mercy and justice are met via the first Saturday devotion.

First Saturday[2]

The elements of this devotion, therefore, consist in the following four points, all of which must be offered in reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

1.      Confession: This confession can be made before the First Saturday or afterward, provided that Holy Communion be received in the state of grace. In 1926, Christ in a vision explained to Lucia (Fatima) that this confession could be made a week before or even more, and that it should be offered in reparation.
2.      Holy Communion: Before receiving Holy Communion, it is likewise necessary to offer it in reparation to Our Lady. Our Lord told Lucia in 1930, “This Communion will be accepted on the following Sunday for just reasons, if my priests allow it so.” So if work or school, sickness, or another just reason prevents the Communion on a First Saturday, with this permission it may be received the following Sunday. If Communion is transferred, any or all of the other acts of the devotion may also be performed on Sunday if the person so desires.
3.      Rosary: The Rosary is a vocal prayer said while meditating upon the mysteries of Our Lord’s life and Passion and Our Lady’s life. To comply with the request of our Blessed Mother, it must be offered in reparation and said properly while meditating.
4.       15-minute meditation: Also offered in reparation, the meditation may embrace one or more mysteries; it may include all, taken together or separately. This meditation should be the richest of any meditation, because Our Lady promised to be present when she said “...those who keep me company....”

Today is the Kentucky Derby; life is a race and we like the horses without Christ as our jockey cannot cross the finish line.

Kentucky Derby[3]

The Kentucky Derby is the most popular and oldest horse race in the world.  The race is a 1.25-mile long, Grade I stakes horse race for three-year-old thoroughbreds on a dirt track.  It is held annually at Churchill Downs racetrack in Louisville, Kentucky. The Kentucky Derby, run on the first Saturday in May of every year, is the first leg of the elusive Triple Crown races.  It is followed by the Preakness Stakes two weeks later in Baltimore, Maryland and the Belmont Stakes, 3 weeks after the Preakness in Elmont, New York. Meriweather Clark founded the Kentucky Derby, which was first held in 1875. Since then, the Derby has become a day of luxury and fashion and celebrities are often in attendance.

Kentucky Derby Facts & Quotes

·         Over 160,000 spectators come to see the Kentucky Derby every year while millions of others watch it on TV.
·         In Kentucky, the equine industry generated 3 billion dollars annually and creates 55,000 jobs.
·         As of 2015, no woman trainer or jockey has won the Kentucky Derby. Many have run horses and ridden them, but none have won.
·         Only 12 horses have ever been able to win the Triple Crown. The most recent was American Pharaoh in 2015. Prior to 2015, the Triple Crown hadn't been won since 1978.
·         I feel like the luckiest Mexican on Earth. He has been a special horse since the first time I rode him. He has a lot of talent and is an unbelievable horse. Turning for home I started riding a little harder. At the eighth pole, I just couldn’t put that other horse (Firing Line) away, but he got it done. - Victor Espinoza - 2015 Kentucky Derby winning Jockey riding American Pharaoh

Kentucky Derby Top Events and Things to Do

·         Tune in to watch the Derby live on the first weekend of May. It is usually broadcast on many sports networks around the world.
·         Attend the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, Kentucky. Be careful though, tickets are very expensive and must be purchased far in advance for the event.
·         Enjoy a good movie about horses and horse racing. Some of our picks are: The Cup (2011), The First Saturday in May (2007), Racing Stripes (2005), Seabiscuit (2003), The Derby Stallion (2005), Secretariat (2010) and Dreamer (2005).
·         Book a horseback riding class at a local stable. Try to get a feel for what it would be like to race that fast.
·         Plan a Triple Crown Party. Be sure to send out invitations for the Derby, the Preakness and the Belmont. Pick favorite horses and see who wins the home derby. During the celebration it would be a good idea to also pray for the pope who wears the triple crown of the church. The Triple Crown (the tiara) represents the pope's three functions as "supreme pastor", "supreme teacher" and "supreme priest". The gold cross on a monde (globe) surmounting the tiara symbolizes the sovereignty of Jesus.[4]

Bless the Animals and the simple[5]

One day while, Mitch, a Protestant was at the track playing the ponies and all but losing his shirt noticed a Catholic priest who stepped out onto the track and blessed the forehead of one of the horses lining up for the 4th race. Lo and behold, that horse – a very long shot – won the race. Before the next race, as the horses began lining up, Mitch watched with interest the old priest step onto the track. Sure enough, before the 5th race the horses came to the starting gate. The priest made a blessing on the forehead of one of the horses. Mitch made a beeline for a betting window and placed a small bet on the horse blessed by the priest. Again, even though it was another long shot, the horse the priest had blessed won the race. Mitch collected his winnings, and anxiously waited to see which horse the priest would bless for the 6th race. The priest again blessed a horse. Mitch bet big on it, and it won. Mitch was elated. As the races continued the priest kept blessing long shot horses, and each one ended up coming in first. Bye and bye, Mitch was pulling in some serious money. By the last race, he knew his wildest dreams were going to come true. He made a quick dash to the ATM, withdrew all his savings, and awaited the priest's blessing that would tell him which horse to bet on. True to his pattern, the priest stepped onto the track for the last race and blessed the forehead of an old nag that was the longest shot of the day. Mitch also observed the priest blessing the eyes, ears, and hooves of the old nag. Mitch knew he had a winner and bet every cent he owned on the old nag. He then watched dumbfounded as the old nag come in dead last and then dropped dead. Mitch, in a state of shock, made his way down to the track area where the priest was. Confronting the old priest he demanded, 'Father! What happened? All day long you blessed horses and they all won. Then in the last race, the horse you blessed lost by a Kentucky mile. Now, thanks to you I've lost every cent of my savings – all of it!'. The priest nodded wisely and with sympathy. 'Son,' he said, 'that's one of the problems with you Protestants; you can't tell the difference between a simple blessing and the Sacrament of Last Rites.'

Daily Devotions/Prayers

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood






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