NINE-MONTH NOVENA TO OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE

NINE-MONTH NOVENA TO OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE
Start March 12 to December 12

Saturday, November 19, 2022

 


WORLD TOILET DAY 

1 Corinthians, Chapter 16, Verse 11

Therefore no one should disdain him. Rather, send him on his way in PEACE that he may come to me, for I am expecting him with the brothers. 

Paul is talking about Timothy who was a youth. He may have offended the Corinthians in a multitude of ways or people may have disliked him because they disliked Paul but were afraid to openly oppose an apostle. Power struggles are often common even among Christians. I know it came as a great shock to me when I was working at a catholic all-girls school that the nuns in charge had a loathing for the administration at the opposing all boys Jesuit school. We must remember Paul’s advice on charity.

 

If I speak in human and angelic tongues but do not have love, I am a resounding gong or a clashing cymbal and if I have the gift of prophecy and comprehend all mysteries and all knowledge; if I have all faith so as to move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give away everything I own, and if I hand my body over so that I may boast but do not have love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, [love] is not pompous, it is not inflated, it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Cor. 13:1-8)

 

We should not be surprised that good people often are prone to such vices knowing the devil never rests and ever seeks to ruin the church of Christ. Therefore, in times of unrest and wishing to return to peace let us call upon Saint Michael for assistance in opposing evil.

World Toilet Day[1]

World Toilet Day aims to raise awareness of sanitation and hygiene issues around the world. Poor sanitation and hygiene refer to lack of access to clean drinking water, toilets and showers. Poor sanitation drastically increases the risk of disease and malnutrition, especially for women and children. Today, 2.6 billion people, about one-third of the population on the planet, do not have access to proper sanitation, a problem that kills nearly 1 million young children every year. World Toilet Day was designated by the United Nations in July 2013. It is celebrated annually on November 19 as people all over the world take action and support the basic human right of access to clean water and sanitation.

World Toilet Day Facts & Quotes

·        1 in 8 people in the world practices open defecation, meaning that the person must relieve him/herself without cover or shelter from other people.

·        The average person spends one hour and 42 minutes a week on the toilet, or nearly 92 days over his/her lifetime.

·        Diarrhea is the second leading cause of deaths in children under age 5 in developing countries. Diarrhea is primarily due to poor hygiene and sanitation

·        The 2030 Agenda calls on us to renew our efforts in providing access to adequate sanitation worldwide. We must continue to educate and protect communities at risk, and to change cultural perceptions and long-standing practices that hinder the quest for dignity. – Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations.

World Toilet Day Top Events and Things to Do

·        Watch a movie about toilets and the importance of sanitation. Some suggestions are: Guts For Change (2015), A New Culture of Water (2004) and A Thirsty World (2012).

·        Spread awareness by using the hashtag #WorldToiletDay, #WeCantWait and #ToiletAccessIsARight.

·        Tour a local sanitation plant. Sanitation plants throughout the US exist to recycle and clean water while properly disposing of human excrement and other waste.

·        Donate to the World Toilet Organization. All proceeds are used by the organization to help break the taboo around the toilet and sanitation crisis. They help lobby governments, public and private sector stakeholders to prioritize sanitation on the agenda.

·        Read a book about toilets and the importance of sanitation. Some suggestions are: Sanitation & Water Supply in Low-Income Countries, Sitting Pretty An Uninhibited History of the Toilet and The Big Necessity.

·        Check out Earthship technology.

To Squat or Not That is the Question

Enter the Squatty Potty[2]

One time, I took a dump in my backyard because the toilet had been broken for two weeks (blame our absentee slumlord). My best friend never let me live it down, but you know what? I didn't care, because on that crisp fall day in 2007, when the gas station whose toilets I had been relying on was unexpectedly closed, I learned something. Specifically, I learned that pooping outside is… kind of pleasant. But it wasn't until the advent of the Squatty Potty that I really started to analyze why that was. Basically, if you use a Western toilet on the reg, you're fighting against your body's anatomy. But now, there's a way to poop optimally that doesn't involve squatting behind the shrubs and hoping a neighbor won't walk by (though I do recommend everyone try that at least once). Here it is.

You don't know squat. The Squatty Potty is a small footstool designed to fit a toilet's curves. The idea is to elevate your feet and knees, so your body is closer to a squatting angle -- a natural pooping position -- than the upright position imposed on it by a porcelain throne. This isn't just hippie BS, either. There's actual science as to why a squat is the way to go when moving your bowels. "Defecating is actually really complicated and involves a lot of nerves and muscles relaxing and moving," says Dr. Michelle Cohen, a gastroenterologist at Mount Sinai. "When you sit, the puborectalis muscle is pulled in around the colon to create an angle, so the stool can't drop out."

Think of a kinked hose and you might be able to picture what's happening in your colon as the puborectalis muscle stays tight around it. In some cases, particularly in people with constipation or dyssynergic defecation (when your muscles fail to relax, making pooping more difficult), sitting with your thighs perpendicular to the ground can make it much harder to poop. Enter the Squatty Potty

The Squatty Potty was born in 2010 because of this exact scenario. "They say necessity is the mother of invention," says Bobby Edwards, CEO and co-creator of the defecation device. "My mother was constipated. It was definitely out of need." Edwards says his mother's physical therapist explained that constipation is, in many cases, "an anatomical thing," and that if she elevated her feet while eliminating, it would change the angle of the colon and make the whole process work smoothly, the way nature intended. She propped her feet up on a stool and loved the results, but the process wasn't ideal. "She couldn't quite get comfortable with a regular stool, and it was in the way in the bathroom," Edwards says. "I was taking design classes, and she asked if I could design a stool for the toilet, with the height and width to simulate a natural squat."

Boy, could he. Edwards made five prototypes before hitting on the perfect model. Delighted, his mother gave proto-Squatty Potties to constipated friends for Christmas gifts. "She thought everybody needed to be squatting," Edwards says. Word of mouth spread, and in 2012, Edwards launched the website. A media blitz ensued, and the rest is history.

Putting the potty to the test. I was pretty intrigued by the "squatting is better" maxim, so much so that I tried literally squatting on my toilet. Surprisingly (or not?), a militant vegan has uploaded a YouTube video about how to do exactly that. It was a little weird, and there was some serious splash back when shit hit the water, but I could tell stuff was rearranging itself in my colon -- that's the medical terminology, right? It felt good and correct, and I understood why my cats wear such serene, noble expressions when they poop.

Not only is that method impractical, but it’s also probably dangerous for older folks, people with physical challenges or injuries, and, well, everyone, honestly. I needed to try the real deal. The Squatty Potty was delivered to my office in a freaking huge (but mercifully unmarked) brown cardboard box. I sneaked it out to my car, hoping to dodge co-workers and the inevitable, "Ooh, what's that?" The box contained the white plastic stool, a Burger King-like crown with the hashtag #pooplikeroyalty, and a button that read "I Pooped Today!" (Though Squatty Potty entreats its Twitter followers to "share your Poop Like Royalty pics! #pooplikeroyalty," only one brave soul had risen to the challenge as of press time.)

Like a Drop of Water as It Falls into the Ocean[3]

The month of November opens with two Feast Days lived intensely by the Liturgy and by popular piety: All Saints and All Souls. These two feasts give depth to the month traditionally dedicated to praying for those who have crossed the threshold of hope. When we pray for the faithful departed, or better, for those living in the Next World, we are reminded of the ultimate realities of human existence. Authentic Christians are ever more keenly aware of this dimension as they pray for the souls in Purgatory, who are unable to help themselves and rely on our prayers.

O good Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of Hell and take all souls into Heaven, especially those most in need of your mercy.” With this brief and intense invocation, Our Lady in Fatima asked people to pray to Jesus for the holy souls in Purgatory. Each of us is called to holiness and if we were to take seriously the wonderful vocation to live here in earth in communion with the Lord Jesus, then death would be simply “departing” for Heaven.

Thinking of human freedom there comes to mind what Jesus said: “many are called but few are chosen” (Mt 22, 14). God calls everyone to holiness, but few heed the invitation to a banquet of intimate communion with Jesus, the banquet of eternal life which starts here on earth. We are too distracted by many things, like the guests in Gospel who make excuses with the host saying: “I have bought a piece of land and must go and see it. Please accept my apologies." Another said, "I have bought five yoke of oxen and am on my way to try them out. Please accept my apologies." Yet another said, "I have just got married and so am unable to come." (Lc 14, 18-20).

We may feel we are entitled to live life without entrusting it day after day to the one who created and redeemed us, without spending it entirely for the Kingdom of God, because there are so many other important things on which apparently it can be spent: success, profit, so-called “well-being”, a career, power… in general anything which favors affirmation of self, among the wide range of opportunities presented by the world today.

And so life is full of concerns which suffocate loving attention for our Lord and God, and interest for him disappears. The believer is tempted to put off prayer until 'after' his radical conversion: when I have more time I will pray, when I have less concerns I will give more thought to others, when I feel like it I will go more often to church…

The life which the saints lived was not about waiting until tomorrow simply because tomorrow does not belong to us. Ours is only the present moment and it is today that we must convert our hearts, refusing compromise with sin, which is the real enemy of happiness, earthly and heavenly. Grave sin stops supernatural life and, consequently, holiness, that is growth in Jesus Christ.

On life's horizon, the believer and every person, has to look at death. Certainly, we celebrate earthly birth, surrounding it with much attention, but not to be forgotten either, is the “birth” prelude to the great birth to Heaven! For the believer in Christ, life on earth runs towards eternal Life in God. The saints knew this and their funerals were celebrations, because their death was lived as their “birth” to Heaven.

Life on earth is like a drop of water as it falls down into the ocean waiting to embrace it. It falls in a very short time. What a wonderful, consoling truth for the believer, awareness, certainty that comes from faith, of the promises of the Risen Lord, life does not fall into nothingness, it is joined forever with the infinite love of God, plunged into the boundless sea of His Divine mercy! As the Holy Father Benedict XVI, said with these luminous words: “Today we confirm our hope in eternal life founded on the death and resurrection of Christ. ‘I am risen and will be with you forever, says the Lord, and my hand will support you. Whenever you fall, you will fall into my hands and I will be there even at the door of death. Where no one can accompany you and where you can take nothing with you. There I will be waiting to change the darkness into light” (Benedict XVI, Angelus, 2 November 2008).

— by Mgr Luciano Alimandi, Agenzia Fides

Catechism of the Catholic Church

PART THREE: LIFE IN CHRIST

SECTION ONE-MAN'S VOCATION LIFE IN THE SPIRIT

CHAPTER TWO-THE HUMAN COMMUNION

Article 2-PARTICIPATION IN SOCIAL LIFE

Article 3-SOCIAL JUSTICE

I. Respect For the Human Person

1929 Social justice can be obtained only in respecting the transcendent dignity of man. the person represents the ultimate end of society, which is ordered to him:

What is at stake is the dignity of the human person, whose defense and promotion have been entrusted to us by the Creator, and to whom the men and women at every moment of history are strictly and responsibly in debt.

1930 Respect for the human person entails respect for the rights that flow from his dignity as a creature. These rights are prior to society and must be recognized by it. They are the basis of the moral legitimacy of every authority: by flouting them, or refusing to recognize them in its positive legislation, a society undermines its own moral legitimacy. If it does not respect them, authority can rely only on force or violence to obtain obedience from its subjects. It is the Church's role to remind men of good will of these rights and to distinguish them from unwarranted or false claims.

1931 Respect for the human person proceeds by way of respect for the principle that "everyone should look upon his neighbor (without any exception) as 'another self,' above all bearing in mind his life and the means necessary for living it with dignity." No legislation could by itself do away with the fears, prejudices, and attitudes of pride and selfishness which obstruct the establishment of truly fraternal societies. Such behavior will cease only through the charity that finds in every man a "neighbor," a brother.

1932 The duty of making oneself a neighbor to others and actively serving them becomes even more urgent when it involves the disadvantaged, in whatever area this may be. "As you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me."

1933 This same duty extends to those who think or act differently from us. the teaching of Christ goes so far as to require the forgiveness of offenses. He extends the commandment of love, which is that of the New Law, to all enemies. Liberation in the spirit of the Gospel is incompatible with hatred of one's enemy as a person, but not with hatred of the evil that he does as an enemy.

Daily Devotions/Practice

·       Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Today's Fast: Conversion of Sinners

·       Saturday Litany of the Hours Invoking the Aid of Mother Mary

·       Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·       Drops of Christ’s Blood

·       Universal Man Plan

·       Rosary.



[3]https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2021-11-19

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