FULL SNOW MOON
Psalm 15, Verse 1-5
1 LORD, who may abide in your tent? Who may dwell on your holy mountain? 2 Whoever walks without blame, doing what is right, speaking truth from the heart; 3 Who does not slander with his tongue, does no harm to a friend, never defames a neighbor; 4 Who disdains the wicked, but honors those who FEAR the LORD; Who keeps an oath despite the cost, 5 lends no money at interest,  accepts no bribe against the innocent.
Napoleon Hill noted in his manuscript on a book he never published entitled “Outwitting the devil” stated drifting was one of the tools the devil uses to keep us off tack and not sailing towards God’s Mountain.
A Protection against drifting lies within easy reach of every human being who has a normal body and a sound mind. The self-defense can be applied through these simple methods:
1. Do your own thinking on all occasions. The fact that human beings are given complete control over nothing save the power to think their own thoughts is laden with significance.
2. Decide definitely what you want from life; then create a plan for attaining it and be willing to sacrifice everything rather than accept permanent defeat.
3. Analyze temporary defeat, no matter of what nature or cause, and extract from it the seed of an equivalent advantage.
4. Be willing to render useful service equivalent to the value of all material things you demand of life, and render the service first.
5. Recognize that your brain is a receiving set that can be attuned to receive communications from the universal storehouse of Infinite Intelligence, to help you transmute your desires into their physical equivalent.
6. Recognize that your greatest asset is time, the only thing except the power of thought which you own outright, and the one thing which can be shaped into whatever material things you want. Budget your time so none of it is wasted.
7. Recognize the truth that fear generally is a filler with which the Devil occupies the unused portion of your mind. It is only a state of mind which you can control by filling the space it occupies with faith in your ability to make life provide you with whatever you demand of it.
8. When you pray, do not beg! Demand what you want and insist upon getting exactly that, with no substitutes.
9. Recognize that life is a cruel taskmaster and that either you master it or it masters you. There is no half-way or compromising point. Never accept from life anything you do not want. lf that which you do not want is temporarily forced upon you, you can refuse, in your own mind, to accept it and it will make way for the thing you do want.
10. Lastly, remember that your dominating thoughts attract, through a definite law of nature, by the shortest and most convenient route, their physical counterpart. Be careful what your thoughts dwell upon.
A simple formula combining all the ten points:
Be definite in everything you do and never leave unfinished thoughts in the mind. Form the habit of reaching definite decisions on all subjects.
Can the habit of drifting be broken, or does it become permanent once it has been fanned?
The habit can be broken if the victim has enough willpower, providing it is done in time. There is a point beyond which the habit can never be broken. Beyond that point the victim is mine. He resembles a fly that has been caught in a spider’s web. He may struggle, but he cannot get out. Each move he makes entangles him more securely. The web in which I entangle my victims permanently is a law of nature not yet isolated by, or understood by, men of science.
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Full Snow Moon
According to the almanac today we are having a Full Snow Moon. Plan to have a day to take your children or your grandchildren out to play in the snow and talk a little with them about your love and faith in God and make snow angels.
Our Lady of the Snows
Improbable as it is for snow to fall during August, history tells of a snowfall that seemed more impossible, namely in Rome, Italy. August 5, 352, snow fell during the night in Rome.
There lived in the Eternal City a nobleman, John and his childless wife, who had been blessed with much of this world’s goods. They chose the Mother of God as the heir to their fortune, and at the suggestion of Pope Liberius, prayed that she might make known to them how to do this by a particular sign. In answer, the Virgin Mother during the night of August 5, appeared to John and his wife and also to the Holy Father, Pope Liberius, directing them to build a church in her honor on the crown of the Esquiline Hill. And what would be the sign that John and his wife had requested?
“Snow will cover the crest of the hill.”
Snow rarely falls in Rome, but the flakes fell silently during that night, blanketing the peak of the historic hill. In the morning the news quickly spread, and crowds gathered to throng up the hill and behold the white splendor. The snow had fallen in a particular pattern, showing the outline of the future church. When it became known that the snow was a sign from Mary, the people spontaneously added another to her long list of titles, Our Lady of the Snows.
Antarctica: Faith in the Land of Eternal Snows
It’s hard to imagine that 60 million years ago, Antarctica was teeming with dinosaurs languishing in the sweltering, subtropical heat typical of the “White Continent” at the time. Now, it’s home only to seals, penguins, walruses and humans who insist they don’t mind the frigid temperatures. The first official nod to Christianity in Antarctica came from Capt. Aeneas Mackintosh, who erected a large memorial cross on Wind Vane Hill on Cape Evans in honor of three members of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s 1914-1917 Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition party who died in 1916.
Priests Down South
Father William Menster (1913-2007), a priest in the Archdiocese of Dubuque, Iowa, and U.S. Navy chaplain, wrote in his 1949 book Strong Men South about his Antarctic expedition in 1946 and 1947, “The highlight of my life was the celebration of Mass at and blessing the Antarctic continent.” This first Mass on the continent was celebrated in a temporary tent on an altar oriented eastward — or what passes for eastward when you’re at the bottom of the planet. The first Jesuit stationed in Antarctica was seismologist Jesuit Father Henry Birkenhauer, in 1957-58, earning him the nickname “The Polar Priest.” Jesuit Father Daniel Linehan was a scientist and explorer who made two expeditions to Antarctica in 1954-55 and 1955-56. The Linehan Glacier is named after him. Vatican astronomer Jesuit Brother Guy Consolmagno visited Antarctica in 1996 and discovered a number of meteorites. (The climate aside, it’s easy hunting for such rocks, as they stand in clear contrast to the continent’s snowy fields.) Jesuit geophysicists Edward Bradley and J. Joseph Lynch also did extensive research in Antarctica.
There are currently nearly 90 science stations in Antarctica, half of which are only used in summer months, when the days are long. Most research stations have a small multipurpose room that serves as an ad hoc chapel. However, several bases and settlements have their own dedicated chapels, including:
1. Notre-Dame des Vents (Port-aux-Français, Kerguelen Island)
Interestingly, Capt. James Cook discovered this uninhabited island on Christmas Day 1776, an auspiciously appropriate day for what would subsequently become the southernmost French-Catholic church in the world. French for Our Lady of the Winds, the chapel is located in Port-aux-Français, the capital settlement of the Kerguelen Islands, territory of the French Southern and Antarctic lands in the south Indian Ocean. The concrete chapel was built in the 1950s, and its proportions are based on the “Golden Ratio” — the ratio of the building’s dimensions is the same as the ratio of the sum of the larger of the chapel’s two quantities. This is a fancy mathematical way of saying the chapel is exquisitely beautiful and exceptionally pleasing mathematically, aesthetically and emotionally. This chapel serves as the parish church for the Falkland Islands, South Georgia and the British Antarctic Territory. A statue of Our Lady of the Winds stands vigil between the chapel and the Golfe du Morbihan, welcoming congregants while assuring them of her love and prayers.
2. The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart (Punta Arenas)
The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart (El Sagrado Corazón) in Punta Arenas, on the southern tip of South America, serves the Chilean Antarctic Territory. Punta Arenas is the southernmost diocese in the entire Catholic world. Its parish, Nuestra Señora del Carmen, in Puerto Williams on Navarino Island is the southernmost Catholic parish on the planet. Though not “technically” in Antarctica, it’s practically there; and the Vatican has given it its specific mission of serving the faithful who temporarily call Antarctica home.
3. The Ice Cave Catholic Chapel at Belgrano II Base (Coat’s Island)
Argentina’s Belgrano II Base at Coat’s Island is the southernmost house of worship — of any religion — and is entirely made of ice blocks. Built in 1955, it’s used year-round by the scientists, soldiers and staff of the Argentine military base and research station on the island. A wedding was conducted in the chapel on January 29, 2007, for two researchers, a Chilean and a Russian.
3. Notre Dame de l’Ocean (Amsterdam Island)
Our Lady of the Ocean Chapel serves the scientists of French-administered Amsterdam Island. This squarish, cozy chapel is immediately adjacent to the researcher’s quarters and hosts Mass every Sunday. The chapel offers a magnificent view of the Antarctic Ocean.
4. Chapel of the Snows (Ross Island)
The Chapel of the Snows is located at McMurdo Science Station on Ross Island and was constructed in 1956. The chapel was rebuilt after a fire in 1978 and was re-consecrated in 1989. It later opened its doors to Protestants, Mormons, Bahais and Buddhists so that they might conduct their own services. The chapel serves 200 researchers and support personnel, but it can host up to 1,000 visitors. It contains a stained-glass window depicting Antarctica.
5. Notre Dame des Oiseaux Chapel, Possession Island
This tiny French-administered island in the Crozet Archipelago has a chapel dedicated to Our Lady of the Birds. The chapel is located near Alfred Faure Base and was built in 1984.
6. Trinity Church (Bellingshausen, King George Island)
This Russian Orthodox chapel warmly, pun intended, welcomes Catholics to celebrate Mass there. The quaint structure is made of pressurized Siberian pine treated to withstand the subzero temperature of the southernmost continent. It can hold 30 worshippers at any given moment. Two Russian monks’ man this remote chapel, committing to a year’s service. Defying the destructive power of the polar winds, the wooden structure with Russian carvings stands 15 meters (49 feet) tall, and Mass is generally celebrated in either Spanish or English.
7. San Francisco de Assisi Chapel (Hope Bay)
A chapel dedicated to St. Francis of Assisi is appropriately located at Esperanza (Spanish for “hope”) Station in Antarctica’s Hope Bay. This is one of Argentina’s 13 research bases in Antarctica. Catholic babies are routinely baptized here.
8. Chilean Chapel of Santa Maria Reina de la Paz (Villa Las Estrellas, South Shetland Islands)
This humble and utilitarian church is made out of repurposed shipping containers stacked side by side and can fit up to 36 congregants. The local population, aside from the penguins, can be up to 120 people, making it the largest civilian settlement in Antarctica. Located on the Chilean military base of King George’s Island, Villa las Estrellas (Spanish: “The Village of Stars”), it’s not uncommon for personnel to bring their families, with children, to live on the base for up to two years at a time, necessitating religious services and catechetical instruction.
9. Chapel of the Santisima Virgen de Lujan at Marambio Base
The Chapel of the Most Holy Virgin serves Argentina’s permanent, year-round base. On Jan. 3, 2013, during the 44th Overwintering Campaign, Father Marcelo Lopez and the team of researchers consecrated the entire base to the Virgin Mary.
10. St. Ivan Rilski Chapel, Livingston Island
This Orthodox church was built on Bulgaria’s St. Kliment Ohridski expeditionary base in 1988.
11. Stella Maris Chapel, Cape Horn Island
Next to the lighthouse on Cape Horn Island lies a tiny wooden chapel dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. It serves the sacramental needs of the researchers and staff at this station, which lies between South America’s Tierra de Fuego and the Antarctic continent. The first Catholic, let alone human being, to visit the area was Ferdinand Magellan on his round-the-world-trip across the straits that still bear his name. Oddly, the 90 researchers and support staff of the Italian Mario Zucchelli Station at Terra Nova Bay don’t have a permanent chapel, despite lay Italian Catholics offering to build one for free. In fact, a German shipping company offered to transport the prefab chapel to Terra Nova Bay gratis. Despite this, the Italian government is dragging its feet, to the detriment of the devout scientists and staff on the base. The Worldwide Antarctic Program (WAP) is spearheading the construction of a Catholic chapel at the base. So far, the plan is on ice.
Every Wednesday is Dedicated to St. Joseph
The Italian culture has always had a close association with St. Joseph perhaps you could make Wednesdays centered around Jesus’s Papa. Plan an Italian dinner of pizza or spaghetti after attending Mass as most parishes have a Wednesday evening Mass. You could even do carry out to help restaurants. If you are adventurous, you could do the Universal Man Plan: St. Joseph style. Make the evening a family night perhaps it could be a game night. Whatever you do make the day special.
Catechism of the Catholic Church
God, infinitely perfect and blessed in himself, in a design of pure
goodness has freely created man to make him a participant in his blessed
life. For this reason, at all times and in all places, he becomes close to
man: he calls him and helps him to seek him, to know him and to love him with
all his might. He summons all men, who have been scattered by sin, to the
unity of his family, the Church. To achieve this, when the fullness of
time arrived, he sent his Son as Redeemer and Savior. In him and through
him, he calls men to be, in the Holy Spirit, his children of adoption, and
therefore the heirs of his blessed life.
· Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus
· Total Consecration to St. Joseph Day 2
* [15:5] Lends no money at interest: lending money in the Old Testament was often seen as assistance to the poor in their distress, not as an investment; making money off the poor by charging interest was thus forbidden