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Wednesday, October 23, 2019

FEAST OF ST. JOHN OF CAPISTRANO Job, Chapter 21, Verse 28 And to mortals he said: See: the fear of the Lord is wisdom; and avo...

Sunday, October 4, 2020

Monday, October 5, 2020

DAY 52 - OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE, PRAY FOR US

POWER OF PRAYER
The heroes of our faith are the warrior saints who have gone before us. God worked mightily and miraculously through them. Therefore, we must study their ways. In humility, obedience, and trust (H.O.T.), we ask: How did they remain so well connected, in such strong friendship with God, so that his river of supernatural grace could flow so freely through them? What do these "SEALS for Christ" teach us about the ideal spiritual disciplines, the ultimate daily regimen of prayer?

Prayer is our outstanding supernatural resource for fighting the wiles of the enemy. St. Alphonsus said, "Prayer is, beyond doubt, the most powerful weapon the Lord gives us to conquer evil ... but we must really put ourselves into the prayer, it is not enough just to say the words, it must come from the heart. And also prayer needs to be continuous, we must pray no matter what kind of situation we find ourselves in: the warfare we are engaged in is ongoing, so our prayer must be on-going also."

We are being asked to allow God's grace to surge through us to a waiting world, but nemo dat quod non habet (no one gives what he does not have). Fr. John McCloskey in his Seven Daily Habits of Holy Apostolic People correctly points out that the following seven exceptional habits of prayer are the way of storing up spiritual energy to be used to bring Christ to others. St. Bernadette said: "Do not just be a channel for grace, but a reservoir, an overflowing reservoir. No sooner has a channel received grace than it pours it out. A reservoir waits to be filled up and then offers grace to those who come to draw from its superabundance."

Fr. John McCloskey's Seven Daily Habits of Holy Apostolic People include:
  1. The Morning Offering
  2. Mental Prayer (at least 15 minutes)
  3. Spiritual Reading (at least 15 minutes)
  4. Holy Mass and Communion
  5. The Angelus (at 6 AM, noon, 6 PM)
  6. The Holy Rosary
  7. Brief Examination of Conscience (at night)
PRAY A ROSARY
Choose either:
  1. Rosary of the Day: Joyful Mysteries
  2. Traditional 54 Day Rotation: Joyful Mysteries
PRAYERS FOR TRADITIONAL 54 DAY NOVENA

THE JOYFUL MYSTERIES OF THE HOLY ROSARY

Prayer before the recitation: Sign of the cross. Hail Mary.

In petition (first 27 days): Hail, Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, my Mother Mary, hail! At thy feet I humbly kneel to offer thee a Crown of Roses, snow white buds to remind thee of thy joys, each bud recalling to thee a holy mystery, each 10 bound together with my petition for a particular grace. O Holy Queen, dispenser of God's graces, and Mother of all who invoke thee, thou canst not look upon my gift and fail to see its binding. As thou receivest my gift, so wilt thou receive my petition; from thy bounty thou wilt give me the favor I so earnestly and trustingly seek. I despair of nothing that I ask of thee. Show thyself my Mother!

In thanksgiving (last 27 days): Hail, Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, my Mother Mary, hail! At thy feet I gratefully kneel to offer thee a Crown of Roses snow white buds to remind thee of thy joys each bud recalling to thee a holy mystery; each ten bound together with my petition for a particular grace. O Holy Queen, Dispenser of God's graces. and Mother of all who invoke thee! thou canst not look upon my gift and fail to see its binding. As thou receivest my gift, so wilt thou receive my thanksgiving; from thy bounty thou hast given me the favor I so earnestly and trustingly sought. I despaired not of what I asked of thee, and thou hast truly shown thyself my Mother.

Say: The Apostles' Creed, Our Father, 3 Hail Marys, Glory Be.

The Annunciation - Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.

Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of humility and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.

The Visitation - Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.

Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of charity and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.

The Nativity - Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.

Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of detachment from the world and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.

The Presentation - Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.

Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of purity and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.

Finding the Child Jesus in the Temple - Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be.

Concluding Prayer: I bind these snow-white buds with a petition for the virtue of obedience to the will of God and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.

Say: The Hail Holy Queen.

Spiritual Communion: My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.

In petition (first 27 days): Sweet Mother Mary, I offer thee this spiritual communion to bind my bouquets in a wreath to place upon thy brow. O my Mother! Look with favor upon my gift, and in thy love obtain for me (specify request, see below). Hail Mary ...

In thanksgiving (last 27 days): Sweet Mother Mary, I offer thee this Spiritual Communion to bind my bouquets in a wreath to place upon thy brow in thanksgiving for (specify request, see below) which thou in thy love hast obtained for me. Hail, Mary, etc.

PETITION: For the protection and provision for the USA and the world. Mary, Queen of Peace, pray for us!
 
All of the daily Novena Prayers and Reflections are also posted at usgraceforce.com

Spanish language Novena prayers and reflections are available at https://rosarycoasttocoast.com/nfon-espanol/.

Those who would like to pray with others via The Telephone Rosary, call 1-951-799-9866 daily at 6 pm Eastern.

 
All are invited to participate virtually in each of the 15 days events.  Use the Zoom link at the top of the schedule on the Triumph Tour 2020 website: triumphtour2020.com .  For those who feel called to come and participate in person, those details are available.

 Introduction to Hebrews[1]

As early as the second century, this treatise, which is of great rhetorical power and force in its admonition to faithful pilgrimage under Christ’s leadership, bore the title “To the Hebrews.” It was assumed to be directed to Jewish Christians. Usually Hebrews was attached in Greek manuscripts to the collection of letters by Paul. The main theme is the priesthood and sacrifice of Jesus as a means of restoring their lost fervor and strengthening them in their faith. Another important theme of the letter is that of the pilgrimage of the people of God to the heavenly Jerusalem. This theme is intimately connected with that of Jesus’ ministry in the heavenly sanctuary. This work is a “message of encouragement”. Hebrews is probably therefore a written homily, to which the author gave an epistolary ending.

The author begins with a reminder of the preexistence, incarnation, and exaltation of Jesus that proclaimed him the climax of God’s word to humanity. He dwells upon the dignity of the person of Christ, superior to the angels. Christ is God’s final word of salvation communicated not merely by word but through his suffering in the humanity common to him and to all others. This enactment of salvation went beyond the pattern known to Moses, faithful prophet of God’s word though he was, for Jesus as high priest expiated sin and was faithful to God with the faithfulness of God’s own Son. Just as the infidelity of the people thwarted Moses’ efforts to save them, so the infidelity of any Christian may thwart God’s plan in Christ. Christians are to reflect that it is their humanity that Jesus took upon himself, with all its defects save sinfulness, and that he bore the burden of it until death out of obedience to God. God declared this work of his Son to be the cause of salvation for all. Although Christians recognize this fundamental teaching, they may grow weary of it and of its implications, and therefore require other reflections to stimulate their faith.

Therefore, the author presents to the readers for their reflection the everlasting priesthood of Christ, a priesthood that fulfills the promise of the Old Testament. It also provides the meaning God ultimately intended in the sacrifices of the Old Testament: these pointed to the unique sacrifice of Christ, which alone obtains forgiveness of sins. The trial of faith experienced by the readers should resolve itself through their consideration of Christ’s ministry in the heavenly sanctuary and his perpetual intercession there on their behalf. They should also be strengthened by the assurance of his foreordained parousia, and by the fruits of faith that they have already enjoyed. It is in the nature of faith to recognize the reality of what is not yet seen and is the object of hope, and the saints of the Old Testament give striking example of that faith. The perseverance to which the author exhorts the readers is shown forth in the earthly life of Jesus. Despite the afflictions of his ministry and the supreme trial of his suffering and death, he remained confident of the triumph that God would bring him. The difficulties of human life have meaning when they are accepted as God’s discipline, and if Christians persevere in fidelity to the word in which they have believed, they are assured of possessing forever the unshakable kingdom of God.

The letter concludes with specific moral commandments, in the course of which the author recalls again his central theme of the sacrifice of Jesus and the courage needed to associate oneself with it in faith.

 

OCTOBER 5 Monday

FEAST OF ST. FAUSTINA

 

Hebrews, Chapter 10, Verse 26-27

26 If we sin deliberately after receiving knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains sacrifice for sins 27 but a FEARFUL prospect of judgment and a flaming fire that is going to consume the adversaries.

 

Do you have habitual sins that plague you? Have you lost hope after having full knowledge of the truth? Do not abandon hope in the promises of Christ. There will be a second coming. Turn around for here is a very solemn warning about deliberate sin. If you turn your back on the sacrifice of Christ, there is no other sacrifice for sin to appeal to. Do not reject salvation that comes from the Son of God. Only His blood can save us from the inescapable judgment of God.[2] Therefore go to confession attend Mass weekly and increase in faith, hope, and love. 

 

Getting Saved?[3]


 

How do you “get saved” as a Catholic? This is something I’ve had on the burner for a long time and have started writing more than once before. Now my dearest reader asks the question and I’m motivated to come up with a concise response. “Getting saved,” in the parlance of Evangelical Protestants, refers to the experience of salvation by faith, being regenerated and justified by God’s grace, receiving the Holy Spirit, and becoming a Christian. It’s not a term that Catholics generally talk about: In the Catholic understanding, as I’ve discussed before, salvation is not a singular, one-time event, but a journey and a process, an ongoing series of events and encounters with God’s grace, especially through the Sacraments. The reader will know from my blog how one already a Christian becomes a Catholic; but how does one who has no relationship with God at all, the unchurched sinner, become a Christian in the Catholic Church? Does one pray a “sinner’s prayer”?

 

I was taken aback by the question; I’d never really thought about it. The “sinner’s prayer,” in the Evangelical tradition, is a simple acknowledgement to God that one is a sinner in need of His grace and salvation, repenting of those sins and asking Him to come into one’s life and heart. In the traditions my reader and I grew up in, “praying the sinner’s prayer” is shorthand for salvation, after which one is “saved”; and while many even in those traditions would admit that God continues to work in our lives through sanctification, that is generally understood to be “it,” all there is to “getting saved.” (Interestingly, even in the Southern Baptist Convention there has been a recent turn away from this attitude.)

 

Generally speaking, no, Catholics do not believe that praying a “sinner’s prayer,” by itself, will “get one saved.” So, if, in the Catholic understanding, salvation is a journey, how does one take her first steps? Sacramentally speaking, Baptism is the entrance into the Christian life of grace and into the Church, one’s initial justification and when one can rightly say to be “getting saved.”

 

But generally, one must go through months of classes as a catechumen in RCIA before one can even be baptized — which seems to the Evangelical mind to be the very antithesis of evangelism and outreach, making it positively difficult, apparently, for sinners to come into the kingdom. (The critic would raise, and he would be right, that the earliest Christians in Acts 2 didn’t have to endure through months of a catechumenate before they could receive Baptism. But St. Justin Martyr attests that by the mid–second century, some period of preparation and instruction in Christian doctrine was required. There are exceptions: Any priest can expedite the process of initiation if there is a good reason to, e.g. the catechumen demonstrates a thorough understanding of what she’s getting herself into; and in fact anyone, even a layperson, can baptize in cases of dire need, e.g. the sinner is in danger of death.

 

Since the earliest times, the Church has understood that for the catechumen awaiting Baptism who dies in that desire, God works that saving grace anyway.) What is the sinner supposed to do, then, who longs to know God and partake of His grace, but is told she has to wait and first be instructed? The Evangelical mode, at least, serves that immediate moment and desire — though there is then the danger of considering salvation “over and done.” And certainly, there is that desire, and it can start with a moment, and in that moment and even before, God’s grace is working in the sinner’s life, calling her to repentance and faith. I think one reason Evangelical Protestants so easily misunderstand the Catholic view of salvation, calling it salvation by works in contrast to salvation by faith, is because faith is immediate and cannot be put off. Saying that salvation begins with Baptism seems to dismiss the role of faith and place emphasis on what seems to be a work. But just as the Catholic understanding of salvation is that of a journey, the preparation for that journey is itself a journey, the journey to the baptismal font: and in those initial steps God’s grace is already working, cultivating the sinner’s faith. Marriage begins with a wedding: a pledge of faith, commitment, covenant, and espousal; but generally, one does not choose to be married unless one already has faith in one’s betrothed: one’s relationship with the Bridegroom has already been building for some time. Catholics take a long and patient view of salvation; and we should: we’ve been ushering sinners down that road for 2,000 years!

 

I would say, now that I’ve thought about it, that something like a “sinner’s prayer” is a good first step, even for embarking on the Catholic road: not that the formulaic words themselves are efficacious or “get one saved,” but that the confession that one is a sinner and wants to make Jesus Christ Lord of one’s life is an appropriate response to what is surely the grace of God already working in one’s life and bringing one to repentance and faith. Pray a “sinner’s prayer”; better yet, make that confession out loud to God and to others. Begin reading the Bible and the Catechism and attending Mass. Talk to a priest and enroll in RCIA. Through all this, God is working in your life, building you in faith, drawing you nearer to Him; and when it does come time for you to receive the graces of Baptism and the Sacraments, you will be saved by faith.

 

Feast of St. Faustina[4]


 

Saint Faustina was born in the 20th century and canonized in the year 2000. Jesus chose her to deliver to the modern world a message as old as eternity. It is the message of his love for all people, especially sinners. Jesus said to Faustina, "Today I am sending you with my mercy to the people of the whole world." It is his desire to heal the aching world, to draw all people into his merciful heart of love. On February 22, 1931, Jesus appeared to Faustina as the King of Divine Mercy. He asked her to have a picture painted of him as she saw him — clothed in white, with red and white rays of light streaming from his heart. The rays represent the blood and water that flowed from the side of Jesus on the cross. Under the image are the words, "Jesus, I trust in you." Many people did not believe Faustina at first. The sisters in her own convent thought that Jesus could not possibly have selected her for this great favor. After all, she was an uneducated peasant girl. Her superiors often refused to give her permission to carry out Jesus' requests. Church theologians, too, doubted her word. Jesus told Faustina that he loved her obedience and that his will would be done in the end. Faustina was canonized by the first Polish pope, John Paul II, on April 30, 2000. The first Sunday after Easter was declared Divine Mercy Sunday.

Things to Do[5]

·         Read a short biography of Sr. Mary Faustina Kowalska from the Vatican.

·         Read the Holy Father's April 30, 2000 Homily at the solemn Mass celebrated for the canonization of Sr. Mary Faustina Kowalska.

·         From the Directory on Popular Piety and Liturgy: Devotion to the Divine Mercy

·         In connection with the octave of Easter, recent years have witnessed the development and diffusion of a special devotion to the Divine Mercy based on the writings of Sr. Faustina Kowalska who was canonized 30 April 2000. It concentrates on the mercy poured forth in Christ's death and resurrection, fount of the Holy Spirit who forgives sins and restores joy at having been redeemed. Since the liturgy of the Second Sunday of Easter or Divine Mercy Sunday — as it is now called — is the natural locus in which to express man's acceptance of the Redeemer's mercy, the faithful should be taught to understand this devotion in the light of the liturgical celebrations of these Easter days. Indeed, "the paschal Christ is the definitive incarnation of mercy, his living sign which is both historico-salvific and eschatological. At the same time, the Easter liturgy places the words of the psalm on our lips: "I shall sing forever of the Lord's mercy" (Ps 89[88]: 2).

·         Read more from our Catholic Culture library about the Divine Mercy devotion, in particular, a short description of The Divine Mercy devotion

·         St. Faustina came from Poland. John Paul II was also Polish and had a great devotion to the Divine Mercy. He made it a feast day on the second Sunday after Easter. Find out more about Poland and its customs. It's a very Catholic country, with deep devotion to Our Lady. A wonderful book that gives a wonderful understanding of the culture is the Pope's biography A Witness to Hope by George Wiegel.

·         Try your hand at a Polish dish or two. Perhaps practice making some of the favorite foods for the Polish Wigilia (Christmas Eve Dinner) Pierogi (or Pirohi) is one of the most popular Polish foods but do some research to find other recipes.

Divine Mercy Hikes[6]

 

·         Hiking is a popular activity, but it is also an excellent way to mediate and talk with God. This was the original method of prayer used by Abraham. Sedona, Arizona is the backdrop for this series of prayer hikes; however, the meditations could be used with any hike.

 

Truly you have formed my inmost being;
you knit me in my mother's womb.
I give you thanks that I am fearfully, wonderfully made;
wonderful are your works.

 

Feast Day Livestream Plans

 

On Oct. 5, the Feast of St. Faustina, the Marian Fathers at the National Shrine of The Divine Mercy will livestream a program of prayer and reflection beginning at 3 p.m. (EST). The Shrine itself remains closed to the public. A related public ZOOM event will begin at 2:30 p.m. with commentary by Dave and Joan Maroney of Mother of Mercy Messengers (MOMM), an apostolate of the Marian Fathers.

·         Read more about online events

·         What's new about this year’s feast?

 

35 Promises of God[7] cont.

·         “And this is the boldness we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”-1 John 5:14

Daily Devotions

·         Eat waffles and Pray for the assistance of the Angels

·         Monday: Litany of Humility

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood

·         Universal Man Plan

·         Rosary



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