Loretto (Mary’s House) human rights day
Isaiah, Chapter 40, verse 9:
9 Go up onto a high mountain, Zion, herald of good news! Cry out at the top of your voice, Jerusalem, herald of good news! Cry out, do not fear! Say to the cities of Judah: Here is your God!
Christ delights in us if we delight in Him we should also delight in others.
One of my favorite representations of the Lords delight with us is a statue of Joseph and the baby Jesus. Jesus and Joseph are playing. Joseph is slightly bent with the baby Jesus giggling crawling over the back of Joseph and peeking over his shoulder looking at his face in peek a boo fashion and delight is all over both of their faces. How can we fear when we have a God who loves us so!
In times of tribulation when we feel courage being drained from our souls let us remember the courage of blessed Saint Joseph reflecting on his courage, strength and of course gentleness with our Lord Jesus. In times of trouble let us call on the aid of St. Joseph reflecting on this portion of the litany of Saint Joseph.
”St. Joseph, Renowned offspring of David, Light of Patriarchs, Spouse of the Mother of God, Chaste guardian of the Virgin, Foster father of the Son of God, Diligent protector of Christ, Head of the Holy Family, Joseph most just, Joseph most chaste, Joseph most prudent, Joseph most strong, Joseph most obedient, Joseph most faithful, Mirror of patience, Lover of poverty, Model of artisans, Glory of home life, Guardian of virgins, Pillar of families, Solace of the wretched, Hope of the sick, Patron of the dying, Terror of demons, Protector of Holy Church. Pray for Us!”
The Best Remedy in the Hour of Sorrow
In need, sorrow, and dejection the best means to relieve our distressed hearts is humble and confiding prayer, in which we can pour out our hearts before God, and give ourselves up to His love and mercy, as did Anna, the sorrowful mother of Samuel the prophet, Josaphat in painful uncertainty, Susanna falsely accused and condemned to death, and innumerable other servants of God. These all prayed to God and were delivered from their afflictions, receiving help and consolation. St. James therefore admonishes us, “Is any one of you sad? let him pray” (James v. 13); and St. Paul, encourages us not to be solicitous about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, to let our requests be known to God. Are you, then, sad and discouraged? Lift up your soul to God, and say with David, “Give joy to the soul of Thy servant, for to Thee, O Lord, I have lifted up my soul” (Ps. Ixxxv. 4).
What does it mean to rejoice in the Lord? It means to be glad in remembering the grace by which God called us to the true faith, and gave us the hope of eternal salvation, and to rejoice even in all our tribulations and adversities for the Lord’s sake, as St. Paul did (n. Cor. vii. 4). It also admonishes us to give a good example by modesty and an edifying life, and to fix our desires on God, Who will never fail us if we make our wants known to Him by prayer and supplication, and give Him thanks for benefits received.
In what does the peace of God consist? It consists in a good conscience, such as St. Paul enjoyed. It is this peace, this tranquility of the soul, which sustained the holy martyrs in their agonies, and consoled others under persecution for Christ s sake (St. Matt. v. 11, 12).
Ways to live out the gift of fortitude in your life, bestowed upon you by the Holy Spirit at your Confirmation.
1. Speak out against evil wherever you find it.
2. Take the job in which you can do the most good for the spiritual welfare of others.
3. Be cheerful at your work; practice the apostolate of smiling; it will cost an effort at times.
4. Have a loving solicitude for all with whom you come in contact, especially for those who are friendless.
5. Fight down your own evil passions daily with renewed energy.
6. Be ready to defend your Faith in word, deed, and association.
7. Bring happiness where there is strife.
8. Live your Faith; join organizations that promote Catholic Action.
9. Advise others what to do in a spiritual difficulty; make sure the advice is correct.
10. Stay informed on Catholic news; it will help when explaining the Faith to those outside of the Church.
11. Forsake the job rather than Christian principles.
Our Lady of Loretto
The shrine of Our Lady of Loreto is located on the Adriatic coast of Italy, three hours from Rome. It is the third-largest shrine to Mary in Europe, next to Lourdes and Fatima. The ministry of the shrine is the hospitality shown to pilgrims especially through the sacrament of penance.
· The title "Our Lady of Loreto" is associated with the Holy House of Loreto in Italy, the house of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, miraculously transported by the angels from Palestine to Europe.
· The house of the Holy Family in Nazareth has always been the object of Christian veneration. Shortly after 313, St. Helena, mother of Emperor Constantine, built a basilica over this holy abode. The Saracens invaded the Holy Land in 1090, plundering and destroying Christian shrines, including Constantine’s basilica. Under the ruble, the Holy House was found intact.
· During the twelfth century, another basilica was built to protect the holy dwelling. In 1219 or 1220 St. Francis of Assisi visited the Holy House in Nazareth. So did King St. Louis IX of France, when he was leading a crusade to liberate the Holy Land.
· In 1263, when the Muslims overpowered the crusaders, the basilica was again destroyed but, once more, the Holy House was found intact.
· When the crusaders were completely driven out of the Holy Land in 1291, the Holy House disappeared.
· On May 10, 1291, a parish priest, Fr. Alexander Georgevich in the town of Tersatto, Dalmatia, (present-day Croatia) noticed the sudden appearance of a small building resting on a plot of land. Puzzled, he prayed about it, and in a dream saw the Blessed Virgin Mary, who explained that the structure was the house of the Holy Family, brought there by the power of God.
· In 1294, with the Moslem invasion of Albania, the house disappeared again. According to the testimony of shepherds, it was seen on December 10 of that year born aloft by angels over the Adriatic Sea. This time the Holy House came to rest in a wooded area four miles from Recanati, Italy. As the news spread fast, thousands flocked there, and many miracles took place at the site.
· Due to contrary circumstances, twice again the house was moved, finally coming to rest in the town of Loreto, Italy, its present location.
· As miracles continued to occur in connection with pilgrimages to the house, deputations were sent to Nazareth to determine its origins in 1292, in 1296, and in 1524. All three declared that the measurements of the house corresponded to the visible foundations of the house of Nazareth.
· In 1871 at the suggestion of Cardinal Bartolini, Professor Ratti of the University of Rome was given mortar and stones from the house at Loreto, and similar materials from houses in Nazareth. Ignorant of which was which, Prof. Ratti ascertained that the composition of the material from the house of Loreto while not original to Italy was identical to that of the material from Nazareth.
· Other striking facts about the house in Loreto are that it has no foundations. The walls rest on a plot that was part field and part road, a sure indication that it was not built there but placed there. The style of the house of Loreto is not Italian but Eastern. And the original door was on the long side of the house, indicating that it was a dwelling and not a church.
· Today a great basilica houses the dwelling of the holiest of families. From 1330, practically all the Popes have considered Loreto the greatest shrine of Christendom. Bulls in favor of the shrine were issued by Pope Sixtus IV in 1491 and by Julius II in 1507. While the miracle of the translation of the house is not a matter of faith, Innocent XII, in the seventeenth century, appointed a special Mass for the Feast of the Translation of the Holy House. Numerous saints have visited the house-relic.
· As pilgrims enter the small precinct, they read on the threshold, “Hic Verbum caro factum est” – “Here the Word became flesh”. Above the altar inside the holy house is an ancient statue of Our Lady holding the Infant Jesus, known as Our Lady of Loreto.
Things to Do:
- Read this article at Catholic News Agency.
- Read Science Confirms: Angels Took the House of Our Lady of Nazareth to Loreto
- Read about the Basilica of the Holy House
Human Rights Day
Human Rights Day commemorates the day on which the United Nations issued the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), a document drafted by representatives from all regions of the world, which outlined fundamental human rights to be universally protected. The Declaration contains 30 articles that touch on rights to freedom, justice, peace, dignity, education and health care, amongst other rights. On December 10, 1948, the United Nations proclaimed the UDHR in an effort to help define equal rights that all humans on the planet deserve and can help the world achieve lasting freedom, justice and peace. Human Rights Day was officially declared by the United Nations in 1950. It is celebrated on December 10th each year and is marked by speeches and activities designed to bring attention to the issues surrounding the most pressing Human Rights issues worldwide.
Human Rights Day Facts & Quotes
· The United Nations Declaration of Human Rights was one of their first declarations and came about after the atrocities perpetrated upon humans during World War II were brought to light.
· Over the past decade, armed conflict has killed 2 million children, disabled another 4-5 million, left 12 million homeless and orphaned another million.
· Whenever I hear anyone arguing for slavery, I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally. - Abraham Lincoln
· America did not invent human rights. In a very real sense... human rights invented America. - Jimmy Carter
· I have cherished the ideal a democratic and free society... it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die. - Nelson Mandela, President of South Africa, who was imprisoned from 1964-1990.
Human Rights Day Top Events and Things to Do
· Educate yourself on current human rights fights such as genocide by terrorist groups, slavery and trafficking and child labor around the world.
· Get involved with a local human rights organization.
· Watch a documentary about human rights issues and violations. Some recommendations: Invisible Children (2006), Girl Rising (2013) and Nefarious (2011).
· The U.S. is not the only country to recognize the importance of religious liberty. The UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights--a foundational document for international law, created by representatives from all over the world--recognizes this basic human right in Article 18: “Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance”. Clearly, the framers of this document relied on human reason and saw the need for governments to recognize this civil right.
· Attend Mass: During the Octave of the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
 Goffine’s Divine Instructions, 1896.
Our Christian Home by Rev. Joseph A. Fischer, Seraphic Press, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 1954