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Saturday, September 18, 2021

  DAY 35 - MARY, REFUGE OF SINNERS, PRAY FOR US CATCH EXCELLENCE The desire to enter the fight is a desire to enter into a genuine training ...

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Monday, February 15, 2021

 

Elements of the 40-Day "Let Freedom Ring"
Tactical Training for Freedom from the Devil

Ash Wednesday begins the "Let Freedom Ring" 40-Day Challenge for freedom from the devil. We have over 76,000 joining forces in this challenge, to date. Outlined below is the elements of this tactical training. Now is a good time for each of us to make any specific plans for our participation in this "Let Freedom Ring" 40-day Challenge.
The Regimen
Any army must have a regimen of training that hones their minds, bodies, and souls into warriors; otherwise, the soldiers would get mowed down by a professional enemy. This 40-day training contains elements for all three parts of our beings to keep us an integrated whole, focused on the battle. Each day will be broken into prayer, reflection, and reparation, and contains elements designed to strengthen our spiritual, physical, and mental selves. In doing this, we offer no quarter for the devil to find lodging.

Each day you will be provided with a checklist to help you stay on track.  Here is an overview of the training protocol:

Prayer for Freedom from the Devil (Before reading the day's material, pray the Prayer for Freedom from the Devil):

My Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,
At a word from You the devil and his minions flee in terror.
You are the source of all truth. You are the source of all strength.
By the power of Your Cross and Resurrection, we beseech You, O Lord
To extend Your saving arm and to send Your holy angels
To defend us as we do battle with Satan and his demonic forces.
Exorcise, we pray, that which oppresses Your Bride, the Church,
So that within ourselves, our families, our parishes, our dioceses, and our nation
We may turn fully back to You in all fidelity and trust.
Lord, we know if You will it, it will be done.
Give us the perseverance for this mission, we pray.
Amen.

Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception ... pray for us
St. Joseph ... pray for us
St. Michael the Archangel ... pray for us
(the patron of your parish) ... pray for us
(your confirmation saint) ... pray for us

Reflection: Read the daily reflection, written by one of the three authors, on a particular manifestation of the demonic and the sin it leads to. Familiarize yourself with the corresponding virtue and plan of action to cultivate.

Prayer: Prayer of reparation and exorcism will be followed by a litany
Monday: Litany of Humility
Tuesday: Litany of St. Michael the Archangel
Wednesday: Litany of St. Joseph
Thursday: Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus
Friday: Litany of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
Saturday: Litany of the Immaculate Heart of Mary
Sunday: Litany of the Blessed Sacrament

Acts of Reparation and Penance:
 
Factoring into this will be variables of age, ability, and availability.
  • To pray a Rosary for the intention of exorcism of the day's area of reflection
  • To pray a Divine Mercy Chaplet in reparation for the sin caused by the area of the day's reflection
  • To commit one act of either a spiritual or corporal works of mercy for either one who has been harmed by our sin or who has harmed us by their sin.
  • To commit to fasting or abstinence days as prescribed below.
  • To commit to a prescribed time of exercise based on one's abilities
  • To commit to going to Confession once a week (where available)
  • To refrain from all use of the conventional media throughout the 40 days and to limit one's use of social media to one hour a day for non-business or evangelical use.
Levels
The fasting, abstinence, and exercise components of this training will be divided into four levels. All levels commit to the acts of reflection and prayer discussed previously. Remember, the Rosary and Divine Mercy Chaplet can be recited while exercising!
Understanding that age, ability, and health are factors, determine the level that is the best fit for you:

White Level: Recommended for pregnant women, senior citizens, and those with serious medical conditions.

Red Level: Recommended for those who do not think they can do the blue level.

Blue level: Recommended for those called to go "All In!"

Black level: For clerics.
 
Level
Fasting/Abstinence 
Regimen
Daily Exercise Regimen 
White
No fasting.
 
Abstain 3x a week from sweets, soda, junk food, and fast food
Exercise for 30 min.
+
Spiritual reading for 30 min.
Red
Fast on Wednesdays and Fridays.
 
Abstain from sweets, soda, junk food, and fast food the 5 other days of the week
60 min.
Blue
Fast 3x a week 
(on Wednesdays, Fridays, and any another day except Sunday)
 
Abstain from sweets, soda, junk food, and fast food for all 40 days
60 min.
Black
Fast 3x per week 
(unless age or medical conditions are an issue)
 
Abstain from sweets, soda, junk food, and fast food for all 40 days
 
*See note for clerics below!
 
 
60 min. 
 
(30 min. for those over 65 or who have medical conditions)








Note for Clerics
In addition, clerics are asked to do the following:
- Commit to Holy Hour every day (prayer, reflection, and  some acts of reparation can be done during this time).
- Make more time for the confessional and daily Mass.
- Pray all hours of the Divine Office daily for 40 days.
- Commit to confession once a week.
- In a special way, offer the prayers for those placed under your pastoral care and do your acts of reparation for those harmed by the actions of any cleric, including yourself.
 
More Information
For those enlisted in the US Grace Force, you will receive, by way of email, the daily prayers and reflections for "Let Freedom Ring: A 40 Day Tactical Training for Freedom from the Devil." 

You can enlist in the United States Grace Force HERE (please recruit family and friends!)

Information on the United States Grace Force can be found HERE

We highly recommend ordering the book (recently published), authored by Fr. Bill Peckman, Fr. James Altman and Fr. Rick Heilman. This amazing book will be a great tool for easy access, highlighting and bookmarking as you traverse through this 40-day challenge with tens of thousands of other special forces prayer warriors!

You can order the book at RomanCatholicGear.com.


Shrovetide Monday

PRESIDENTS DAY SINGLES AWARENESS-SCOTTISH FEST 

Exodus, Chapter 18, Verse 18-21

18 “You will surely wear yourself out, both you and these people with you. The task is too heavy for you; you cannot do it alone. 19 Now, listen to me, and I will give you some advice, and may God be with you. Act as the people’s representative before God, and bring their disputes to God. 20 Enlighten them in regard to the statutes and instructions, showing them how they are to conduct themselves and what they are to do. 21 But you should also look among all the people for able and GOD-FEARING men, trustworthy men who hate dishonest gain, and set them over the people as commanders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties, and of tens.

 

Our Lord asks us to lead, follow or get out of the way. Our Lord tells us, “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters. Therefore, I say to you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven people, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.” (Mt. 12:30-31) If you are a leader start leading in the church with a group of ten; follow where you can and do not hinder the work of the Holy Spirit. 


Shrovetide Monday-Carnival Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago[1]

You can’t really understand Trinidad unless you come for Carnival, or mas (for masquerade), as it’s locally known. Trinidad is a melting pot of West African, East Indian, Chinese, South American, and European, which has influenced both its music and Carnival itself. The country’s West African roots gave birth to the steel pan (or steel drum, originally made from empty oil barrels), calypso music, and its more recent souped-up version, soca (“soul-calypso”), which makes this Carnival the loudest and wildest in all the Caribbean.

It’s the national obsession, with Port of Spain at its heart. Bands and masqueraders begin their preparations a year in advance. Things start to hum after Christmas, gradually building to a crescendo of rehearsals, concerts, open-air fêtes, and calypso duels. The final 2-day explosion of color, music, and unbridled excess officially kicks off at 4 A.M. on Carnival Monday with the “opening day” parade called J’Ouvert (pronounced joo-VAY). Fueled by copious amounts of beer, revelers covered in mud, grease, body paint, and chocolate form a mass of happy humanity as they follow trucks blasting soca and “chip” (dance) until sunrise.

Monday (“old mas”) continues with bands and dancers along a 6-mile parade route. The glitter and glamorous costumes of “pretty mas” are saved for Shrove Tuesday (Mardi Gras), the day before Ash Wednesday. Tens of thousands take to the streets in costume (often sequined bikinis and feather headdresses), with groups as large as 3,000 in identical costume following flatbed trucks carrying steel bands competing for the title of “Masquerade Band of the Year.” Getups are at their most extravagant for the Kings and Queens Costume Competition— some can weigh up to 200 pounds (and are attached to wheels for mobility) and incorporate fog, fireworks, and other special effects. “Pan” bands with as many as 100 musicians perform nonstop in a riotous celebration of King Carnival.

Rosenmontag[2] (English: Rose Monday) is the highlight of the German Karneval (carnival), and takes place on the Shrove Monday before Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent. Mardi Gras, though celebrated on Fat Tuesday, is a similar event. Rosenmontag is celebrated in German-speaking countries, including Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Belgium (Eupen, Kelmis), but most heavily in the carnival strongholds which include the Rhineland, especially in Cologne, Bonn, Düsseldorf,[4] Aachen and Mainz. In contrast to Germany, in Austria, the highlight of the carneval is not Rosenmontag, but Shrove Tuesday.

The name for the carnival comes from the German dialect word roose meaning "frolic" and Montag meaning Monday.

Overview

The Karneval season begins at 11 minutes past the eleventh hour on 11 November and the "street carnival" starts on the Thursday before Rosenmontag, which is known as Weiberfastnacht ("women's carnival", Fat Thursday). Karneval is prevalent in Roman Catholic areas and is a continuation of the old Roman traditions of slaves and servants being master for a day. Karneval derives from the Latin carnem levare ("taking leave of meat") marking the beginning of Lent.

Carnival is not a national holiday in Germany, but schools are closed on Rosenmontag and the following Tuesday in the strongholds and many other areas. Many schools as well as companies tend to give teachers, pupils and employees the Thursday before Rosenmontag off as well and have celebrations in school or in the working place on Weiberfastnacht, although every now and then there are efforts to cut these free holidays in some companies.

Celebrations usually include dressing up in fancy costumes, dancing, parades, heavy drinking and general public displays with floats. Every town in the Karneval areas boasts at least one parade with floats making fun of the themes of the day. Usually sweets (Kamelle) are thrown into the crowds lining the streets among cries of Helau or Alaaf, whereby the cry Kölle Alaaf is only applied in the Cologne CarnivalAlaaf stems from or Alle af, Ripuarian for "all [others] away". Sweets and tulips are thrown into the crowd.

The celebrations become quieter the next day, known as Veilchendienstag ("Violet Tuesday", Shrove Tuesday), and end with Ash Wednesday.


NOVENA TO THE HOLY FACE

DAILY PREPARATORY PRAYER

 O Most Holy and Blessed Trinity, through the intercession of Holy Mary, whose soul was pierced through by a sword of sorrow at the sight of the passion of her Divine Son, we ask your help in making a perfect Novena of reparation with Jesus, united with all His sorrows, love and total abandonment.

We now implore all the Angels and Saints to intercede for us as we pray this Holy Novena to the Most Holy Face of Jesus and for the glory of the most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.

Ninth Day

Psalm 51, 18-21.

For in sacrifice you take no delight, burnt offering from me you would refuse, my sacrifice a contrite spirit. A humbled, contrite heart you will not spurn. In your goodness, show favor to Zion; rebuild the walls of Jerusalem Then you will be pleased with lawful sacrifice, holocausts offered on your altar.

Sacred Face of our Lord and our God, what words can we do to express our gratitude? How can we speak of our joy? That you have deigned to hear us, that you have chosen to answer us in our hour of need. We say this because we know that our prayers will be granted. We know that you, in your loving kindness, listened to our pleading hearts, and will give, out of your fullness, the answer to our problems. Mary, our Mother, thank you for your intercession on our behalf. Saint Joseph, thank you for your prayers.

Through the merits of your precious blood and your Holy Face, O Jesus, grant us our petition, Pardon and Mercy.

Prayer to the Holy Trinity

Most Holy Trinity, Godhead indivisible, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, our first beginning and our last end. Since you have made us after your own image and likeness, grant that all the thoughts of our minds, all the words of our tongues, all the affections of our hearts and all our actions may be always conformed to your most Holy Will, so that after having seen you here on earth in appearances and in a dark manner by the means of faith, we may come at last to contemplate you face to face, in the perfect possession of you forever in paradise. Amen.

Pray one (1) Our Father, (3) Hail Mary’s, (1) Glory Be.
O Bleeding Face, O Face Divine, be every adoration Thine. (Three
times


Preparing for Battle[3] Know Your Weapons

The weapon of Eucharistic adoration

Outside of Mass, the other great refuge from the Devil and his wiles is prayer before the Blessed Sacrament. St. John Bosco used to tell the boys who were under his care:

·         Listen: There are two things the Devil is deathly afraid of: fervent Communions and frequent visits to the Blessed Sacrament.

·         Do you want Our Lord to grant you many graces? Visit him often.

·         Do you want Him to grant you only a few? Visit Him only seldom.

·         Do you want the Devil to attack you? Rarely visit the Blessed Sacrament.

·         Do you want the Devil to flee from you? Visit Jesus often.

·         Do you want to overcome the Devil? Take refuge at Jesus’ feet.

·         Do you want to be overcome by the Devil? Give up visiting Jesus.

·         Visiting the Blessed Sacrament is essential, my dear boys, if you want to overcome the Devil. Therefore, make frequent visits to Jesus. If you do that, the Devil will never prevail against you.

Confession and Holy Communion[4]

One of the Precepts of the Church is to receive the sacraments of Penance and Holy Communion at least once a year, during Lent or Paschaltide. Catholics once dedicated the three days prior to Lent as a special time to go to confession. Shrovetide arose from the desire to prepare for the holy asceticism of the Great Fast. Once Lent begins, however, confession should still be sought out: since Lent is a time for frequent and frank examinations of conscience, confession is a sacrament that should be liberally taken advantage of during this time. 

Guardian Angels[5]


 

Our lives always are better if we work with God rather than against him. To this end God has assigned an angel to protect churches and persons for indeed we are the true temples of God. We should be particularly attentive to our own guardian angels, since they are specifically assigned to our care. Our guardian angels want to help us cooperate with the will of God, and they want to keep us from sin. They help us to comfort others-and they want to keep us safe and from causing harm to others. They are our best friend in that they always want what’s best for us even if it does not coincide with the things, we desire the most and they will undoubtedly help us, especially when we ask them. Learn to ask for what you need. Our angel helps us to answer Gods call for holiness. As we are the sanctuary of the Holy Spirit our angel is charged with protecting our temples and keeping us pure for the presence of God. We must learn to speak to the angels.

 

No evil shall befall you, no affliction come near your tent for he commands his angels with regard to you, to guard you wherever you go. With their hands they shall support you, lest you strike your foot against a stone. You can tread upon the asp and the viper, trample the lion and the dragon. (Ps.91:10-13)

President's Day[6]

President's Day, or Washington's Birthday as it is still legally known, was originally designed as a celebration of George Washington's birthdate.  In 1880, Congress voted to make this the first national holiday which honored an individual.  In 1968, Congress enacted the Uniform Monday Bill, to give workers as many long weekends as possible. This moved as many holidays to a standard Monday each year.  Many states were already honoring Abraham Lincoln's birthday, February 12th, and this celebration was combined with George Washington's birthday, for one federal holiday.  It is observed on the third Monday in February each year.

President's Day Facts

·         According to the Julian calendar, Washington was born February 11, 1732.  The Gregorian calendar was adopted in 1752, changing Washington's Birthday to February 22.

·         Since 1888, Washington's Farewell Address has been read aloud in the U.S. Senate on February 22nd.

·         George Washington was the Commander in Chief of the Continental Army, first U.S. President, and President of the Constitutional Convention.

·         Presidents Day never falls on Washington's actual birthdate (Feb. 22).  The third Monday in February can never be any later than February 21st.

President's Day Top Events and Things to Do

·         Visit Mt. Vernon, VA, Washington's ancestral home and place of both he and his wife Martha's tomb.  Admission is free on President's Day.

·         Go shopping for a car.  Presidents day weekend typically features some of the best car deals of the year as dealers try to clear out prior-year inventory.

·         Read George Washington's Farewell Address and reflect on his contributions to United States.

·         Read Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation and reflect on his contributions to the United States.

·         Visit the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C.

Salute the Presidents

What better way to celebrate President's Day than with a trip to Mount Rushmore. This national memorial in South Dakota features the heads of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln.

Single? So Sad, too bad[7]. Singles Awareness Day


After a Christmas spent with elderly family members asking when they’re finally going to get married, or at least find a boyfriend or girlfriend to bring home, life does not get any easier for singles after Christmas, either. No sooner have the Santa Claus and snowman decorations vanished from the shops than the shelves begin to burst with cuddly teddy bears, heart-shaped balloons and boxes of cheap chocolates, all in shades of nauseating neon pinks and reds. Yes, Valentine’s Day has become one of the world’s most profitable occasions, yet another marketing scheme that has hit pay dirt more than the original creators of the idea could have ever dreamed. If you’re not in a relationship Valentine’s day is bad enough, what with all the additional pressure to be ‘romantic’, if such rampant and blatant consumerism and commercialism can be considered romantic at all. The restaurants are all overpacked with couples trying too hard to impress each other, and it seems every flower in the whole city has been bought out, just so someone can say it’s pretty once and then thrown away. Hallmark holidays are called that for a reason. For singles, on the other hand, Valentine’s day can be a simple and cruel reminder that they are alone. No pink stuffed animals for them, and no tacky heart-shaped boxes of poor-quality chocolate, either, though one does tend to wonder whether that really makes them worse off in the first place. Singles Awareness Day used to be an alternate name used for Valentine’s Day among those who found themselves unattached during the day, but it all became too depressing.  So, by single’s hive-mind consensus, it fell to the day after as a perfect antidote to all of the neon nonsense.

How to Celebrate Singles Awareness/Appreciation Day

·         It’s a humorous holiday to celebrate being single, to share with single friends, to send each other presents or even order yourself some flowers. On this day many people wear green, as it is the complementary opposite of red.

·         Another popular option is an absence of color (black), to symbolize an absence of celebration.

·         One increasingly popular activity is to travel to Brazil and witness the Brazilian Carnival. The trip, coupled with the fact that Brazil doesn’t celebrate Valentine’s Day on February 14, but in June, provides a temporary getaway from the neon pink of the Valentine’s holiday in the Western culture, by simply substituting it with another celebration. 

·         Some who celebrate Singles Awareness Day just want to remind romantic couples that they don’t need to be in a relationship to celebrate life, and that the key to being happy is being able to be happy with yourself.

·         Contrary to popular misconceptions, Singles Awareness Day is not about self-pity but rather a chance to announce to the world that you are single and happy to be so. Originally, most singles referred to February 14 as Single’s Awareness Day (acronym: SAD) until it they realized that that was just depressing. Choosing the next day allowed single people a chance to turn this into a celebration rather than a festival of self-pity. There is no reason to be miserable that you are independent and unattached; on the contrary, there are many more people in relationships than you might think who rather wish they were in your shoes, with nobody to answer to but themselves. This is the day that all of the single people can proudly stand up and show that it is okay to be single. Take that, cupid!

While cleaning out my files the other day I came across this note. I don’t know the source but thought I would share it.

 A Note From Heaven 

Dear Beloved, One, 

I see your loneliness and fears, your guilt and frustrations. I see your endless search for love and fulfillment. All this must be, in order for you to come the end of your own understanding—then you can hear My voice. Listen carefully amid the noise of the world and you will hear…I love you, I shed My blood for you to make you clean. Give yourself completely to Me. I created you to be just as you are, and you are lovely in My eyes. Do not criticize yourself or become depressed for not being perfect in your own eyes. This leads only to frustrations. I want you to trust Me one step, one second at a time. Dwell in My power and My love and be free, be yourself. Don’t allow other people to control you. I will guide you, if you let Me, but be aware of My presence in everything. I will give you patience, love, joy, and peace. Look to Me for answers for I am your shepherd and will lead you. Follow Me only!! Do not ever forget this. Listen and I will tell you My will. 

Let My love flow from you and spill over to all you touch. Be not concerned with yourself—you are My responsibility. I will change you without your ever knowing it. You are to love yourself and love others, simply because I love you. Take your eyes off yourself, look only to Me, I lead, I change, I create, but not when you are striving. You are mine…let Me have the joy of making you like Christ. 

Your only command is to look to Me and Me, only—never to yourself and never to others. Do not struggle but relax in My love. I know what is best and will do it in you. Stop trying to become and let me make you what I want. 

My will is perfect;

My love is sufficient. I will

Supply all your needs…

Only look to Me. 

I love you,

Your Heavenly Father

 Daily Devotions/Activities

·         30 Days (day 29) with St. Joseph (End on Ash Shrove Tuesday)

·         Eat waffles and Pray for the assistance of the Angels

·         Monday: Litany of Humility

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood

·         Universal Man Plan

·         Rosary




[1]Schultz, Patricia. 1,000 Places to See Before You Die

[3]Thigpen, Paul. Manual for Spiritual Warfare. TAN Books.

[5] Hahn, Scott, Signs of Life; 40 Catholic Customs and their biblical roots. Chap. 5. Guardian Angels

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