NINE-MONTH NOVENA TO OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE

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

Friday, August 25, 2023

 DAY 11 – MOTHER MOST ADMIRABLE, PRAY THAT WE RECEIVE THE GIFT OF COUNSEL

 

GOD’S WORD


“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” (Psalm 119:105)


“For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot.” (Romans 8:7)


“The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.” (1 Corinthians 2:14)


“Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8)


HEROES’ WORDS


“Of all human activities, man’s listening to God is the supreme act of his reasoning and will.” -Pope Paul VI


“Listen and attend with the ear of your heart.” -St. Benedict


MEDITATION


The Gift of Counsel: One of the special gifts of the Holy Spirit; it perfects the virtue of prudence. Its function is to enable a person to judge promptly and rightly, as by a sort of supernatural intuition, what should be done, especially in difficult situations. With the gift of counsel, the Holy Spirit speaks, as it were, to the heart and in an instant enlightens a person what to do. It corresponds to the promise made by Christ to his followers, “When they hand you over, do not worry about how to speak or what to say; what you are to say will be given to you when the time comes; because it is not you who will be speaking; the Spirit of your Father will be speaking in you” (Mt 10:19). Counsel refers primarily to prudent conduct in one’s own case, and only secondarily in favor of others. Enlightened by the Spirit, a person learns what to do in a specific case and what advice to give when consulted or command to make if he is in authority. (Fr. John Hardon, Modern Catholic Dictionary)


 

PRAYERS FOR TRADITIONAL 54 DAY NOVENA


THE SORROWFUL 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, blood red roses to remind thee of the passion of thy divine Son, with Whom thou didst so fully partake of its bitterness, each rose 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 blood red roses to remind thee of the passion of thy divine Son, with Whom thou didst so fully partake of its bitterness each rose 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 Agony in the Garden – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be. Fatima Prayer.


Concluding Prayer: I bind these blood red roses with a petition for the virtue of resignation to the will of God and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.


The Scourging at the Pillar – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be. Fatima Prayer.


Concluding Prayer: I bind these blood red roses with a petition for the virtue of mortification and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.


The Crowning with Thorns – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be. Fatima Prayer.


Concluding Prayer: I bind these blood red roses with a petition for the virtue of humility and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.


The Carrying of the Cross – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be. Fatima Prayer.


Concluding Prayer: I bind these blood red roses with a petition for the virtue of patience in adversity and humbly lay this bouquet at thy feet.


The Crucifixion – Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, Glory Be. Fatima Prayer.


Concluding Prayer: I bind these blood red roses with a petition for the virtue of love of our enemies 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: May our Church and our country find hope as we unite at the foot of the cross. (Please add your own petitions to this powerful novena)

 


All of the daily Novena Prayers and Reflections are found in this book: 54 Day Basic Training in Holines


All of the daily Novena Prayers and Reflections are also posted at usgraceforce.com


You can join the United State Grace Force Facebook group HERE, to receive the reflections each day.


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.


Enroll in the worldwide Confraternity of the Most Holy Rosary! Click here: https://championshrine.org/confraternity/ to enroll in the Confraternity through the National Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help in Champion WI; the only approved Marian apparition site in the US!


 

You are welcomed to join Fr. Richard Heilman as he prays the rosary "over our country" at sunrise from a lookout tower atop Blue Mounds State Park:


ST. LOUIS OF FRANCE

 

2 Chronicles, Chapter 20, Verse 17

You will not have to fight in this encounter. Take your places, stand firm, and see the salvation of the LORD; he will be with you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not FEAR or be dismayed. Tomorrow go out to meet them, and the LORD will be with you.”

 

This encounter was a battle for the hearts of men who were firm in the faith and hope of salvation. God was with Israel. Those who do not fear the battle know that He is greater, and he empowers his beloved. Let your heart ascend to Him!

 

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.

Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.

We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant,

gorgeous, talented, fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?

You are a child of God.

Your playing small does not serve the world.

There is nothing enlightened about shrinking

so that other people won't feel insecure around you.

We are all meant to shine, as children do.

We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.

It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously

give other people permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,

our presence automatically liberates others.  

Marianne Williamson. 

St. Louis of France[1]

Reigning from 1226 to 1270, Louis IX showed how a saint would act on the throne of France. He was a lovable personality, a kind husband, a father of eleven children, and at the same time a strict ascetic. To an energetic and prudent rule Louis added love and zeal for the practice of piety and the reception of the holy sacraments. He was brave in battle, polished at feasts, and addicted to fasting and mortification. His politics were grounded upon strict justice, unshatterable fidelity, and untiring effort toward peace. Nevertheless, his was not a weakly ruler but one that left its impress upon following generations. He was a great friend of religious Orders, a generous benefactor of the Church. The Breviary says of him: "He had already been king for twenty years when he fell victim to a severe illness. That afforded the occasion for making a vow to undertake a crusade for the liberation of the Holy Land. Immediately upon recovery he received the crusader's cross from the hand of the bishop of Paris, and, followed by an immense army, he crossed the sea in 1248. On the field of battle Louis routed the Saracens; yet when the plague had taken large numbers of his soldiery, he was attacked and taken captive (1250). The king was forced to make peace with the Saracens; upon the payment of a huge ransom, he and his army were again set at liberty." While on a second crusade he died of the plague, with these words from the psalm upon his lips: "I will enter Thy house; I will worship in Thy holy temple and sing praises to Thy Name!" (Ps. 5). It was his mother's supreme desire that her son should become a kind, pious and just ruler. She was wont to say to him: "Never forget that sin is the only great evil in the world. No mother could love her son more than I love you. But I would rather see you lying dead at my feet than know that you had offended God by one mortal sin." These words remained indelibly impressed upon his mind. St. Louis was a member of the Third Order of St. Francis and so is included in the family of Franciscan saints.

St. Louis’ Last Instructions to his Eldest Son

Then he [Louis] called my Lord Philip, his son, and commanded him, as if by testament, to observe all the teachings he had left him, which are hereinafter set down in French, and were, so it is said, written with the king's own saintly hand:

·       "Fair son, the first thing I would teach thee is to set thine heart to love God; for unless he love God none can be saved. Keep thyself from doing aught that is displeasing to God, that is to say, from mortal sin. Contrariwise thou shouldst suffer every manner of torment rather than commit a mortal sin.

·       "If God send thee adversity, receive it in patience and give thanks to our Savior and bethink thee that thou hast deserved it, and that He will make it turn to thine advantage. If He send thee prosperity, then thank Him humbly, so that thou becomest not worse from pride or any other cause, when thou oughtest to be better. For we should not fight against God with his own gifts.

·       "Confess thyself often and choose for thy confessor a right worthy man who knows how to teach thee what to do, and what not to do; and bear thyself in such sort that thy confessor and thy friends shall dare to reprove thee for thy misdoings. Listen to the services of Holy Church devoutly, and without chattering; and pray to God with thy heart and with thy lips, and especially at Mass when the consecration takes place. Let thy heart be tender and full of pity toward those who are poor, miserable, and afflicted, and comfort and help them to the utmost of thy power.

·       "Maintain the good customs of thy realm and abolish the bad. Be not covetous against thy people and do not burden them with taxes and imposts save when thou art in great need.

·       "If thou hast any great burden weighing upon thy heart, tell it to thy confessor or to some right worthy man who is not full of vain words. Thou shalt be able to bear it more easily.

·       "See that thou hast in thy company men, whether religious or lay, who are right worthy and loyal and not full of covetousness, and confer with them oft; and fly and eschew the company of the wicked. Hearken willingly to the Word of God and keep it in thine heart, and seek diligently after prayers and indulgences. Love all that is good and profitable and hate all that is evil, wheresoever it may be.

·       "Let none be so bold as to say before thee any word that would draw or move to sin, or so bold as to speak evil behind another's back for pleasure's sake; nor do thou suffer any word in disparagement of God and of His saints to be spoken in thy presence. Give often thanks to God for all the good things he has bestowed on thee, so that thou be accounted worthy to receive more.

·       "In order to do justice and right to thy subjects, be upright and firm, turning neither to the right hand nor to the left, but always to what is just; and do thou maintain the cause of the poor until such a time as the truth is made clear. And if anyone has an action against thee, make full inquiry until thou knowest the truth; for thus shall thy counsellors judge the more boldly according to the truth, whether for thee or against.

·       "If thou holdest aught that belongeth to another, whether by thine own act or the act of thy predecessors, and the matter be certain, make restitution without delay. If the matter be doubtful, cause inquiry to be made by wise men diligently and promptly.

·       "Give heed that thy servants and thy subjects live under thee in peace and uprightness. Especially maintain the good cities and commons of thy realm in the same estate and with the same franchises as they enjoyed under thy predecessors; and if there be aught to amend, amend and set it right, and keep them in thy favor and love. For because of the power and wealth of the great cities, thine own subjects, and especially thy peers and thy barons and foreigners also will fear to undertake aught against thee.

·       "Love and honor all persons belonging to Holy Church, and see that no one take away or diminish the gifts and alms paid to them by thy predecessors. It is related of King Philip, my grandfather, that one of his counsellors once told him that those of Holy Church did him much harm and damage in that they deprived him of his rights, and diminished his jurisdiction, and that it was a great marvel that he suffered it; and the good king replied that he believed this might well be so, but he had regard to the benefits and courtesies that God had bestowed on him, and so thought it better to abandon some of his rights than to have any contention with the people of Holy Church.

·       "To thy father and mother, thou shalt give honor and reverence, and thou shalt obey their commandments. Bestow the benefices of Holy Church on persons who are righteous and of a clean life, and do it on the advice of men of worth and uprightness.

·       "Beware of undertaking a war against any Christian prince without great deliberation; and if it has to be undertaken, see that thou do no hurt to Holy Church and to those that have done thee no injury. If wars and dissensions arise among thy subjects, see that thou appease them as soon as thou art able. "Use diligence to have good provosts and bailiffs, and inquire often of them and of those of thy household how they conduct themselves, and if there be found in them any vice of inordinate covetousness or falsehood or trickery. Labor to free thy land from all vile iniquity, and especially strike down with all thy power evil swearing and heresy. See to it that the expense of thy household be reasonable.

·       "Finally, my very dear son, cause Masses to be sung for my soul, and prayers to be said throughout thy realm; and give to me a special share and full part in all the good thou doest. Fair, dear son, I give thee all the blessings that a good father can give to his son. And may the blessed Trinity and all the saints keep and defend thee from all evils; and God give thee grace to do His will always, so that He be honored in thee, and that thou and I may both, after this mortal life is ended, be with Him together and praise Him everlastingly. Amen."

Highlights and Things to Do:[2]

Fitness Friday-Sleep[3]


 

Sleep. Something we all need more of, but never seem to get. (If only we had more timeright?) Today we’re going to cover how you can. First stop and think!

 

Sleep is important, and you should get more of it!

 

“When you lie down, you will not be afraid, when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.” (Proverbs 3:24)

 

Before we cover why sleep is important, let’s talk about what happens when you don’t get enough For example: If you manage to only get four hours of sleep, a sleep deprived body can actually act similarly to an intoxicated body.

 

Getting less sleep than average regularly? 

 

This is correlated with increased bodyfat percentage, more issues with insulin sensitivity, and even a disproportionate decrease in lean muscle mass when eating a caloric deficit. We all know missing sleep can make us grouchy, miserable, unfocused, and unproductive. I know I’m going to have a crappy day in the gym when I don’t get enough sleep the night before. I know not sleeping enough AFTER a workout day can further hinder the muscle building process.

 

So, what else happens when you don’t get enough sleep?

 

 “One study found that skipped sleep led to a shrinking brain. The heart and kidneys also take a beating as does your blood pressure. You, in fact, put yourself at continually increased risk for a whole host of lifestyle diseases, including obesity and diabetes.

 

What is the logical extension of this pattern?

 

Numerous studies link partial sleep deprivation/disruption and increased mortality risk!”

 

Conversely, let’s talk about the awesomeness that is sleep.  Here are the benefits associated with getting enough shut eye:

 

·       Sleep will enhance your memory performance and creative problem solving skills.  You know, those things that make you smart.

·       Sleep can boost your athletic performance.  And we all know appearance is a consequence of fitness.

·       Sleep triggers the release of human growth hormone (HGH), which plays a huge role in muscle and cellular regeneration.

·       Sleep cuts your risk for the common cold and other basic illnesses.  Less sick days at work = more productivity, more awesome, more leveling up.

·       Sleep makes you more resilient to daily stress..aka more willpower!

 

Moral of the story: Sleep is awesome.  Yes, some adults can function perfectly on only five hours of sleep, while others need 9-10 hours of sleep to thrive. Most people will fall in that 7-9 range for sleeping needs. So let’s get to the root of the problem for most: “I know I need to sleep more, but my day is too busy and I just can’t get to bed sooner or wake up earlier.” First and foremost, you’re not alone. According to a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly a third of all working Americans get six hours or fewer of sleep a night.

 

Does any of this sound like you? I am always freaking tired, and I need five cups of coffee to get through the day. Even on days when I get enough sleep, I wake up groggy. I get to ‘bed’ but I toss and turn and it takes me forever to fall asleep. I hit snooze half a dozen times before miserably crawling out of bed.

 

A perfect night of sleep

 

Let’s imagine a perfect night:  

 

·       You go to bed at a time that you’re happy with.  

·       You’re not stressed out because you didn’t just watch The Walking Dead.

·       You’re reading a good book in bed that’s putting you closer to sleep rather than checking your smart phone or screwing around on the internet (damn you Twitch.tv).  

·       You sleep uninterrupted through the night.

·       . You have good dreams.

·       When you wake up, either naturally or with an alarm…you immediately get out of bed, without a single snooze, and you feel damn good.  

·       You then crush your morning routine and dominate your day.

 

If you’re looking at your screen and laughing right now, you’re not alone.  I’d guess this is a pipe dream for a huge majority of our society because they’re not sure how sleep actually works, and thus have NOT made sleep a priority.

 

It’s time to start looking at sleep as one of your most important tasks.

 

How to get better sleep

 

We have a circadian rhythm (a daily biological clock) that ebbs and flows throughout the day. Our body uses outside stimuli and our own activity to produce certain hormones at certain times to make our body more prepared for the required functions at that time (alertness vs restfulness).

 

·       When the sun rose, our bodies are signaled “the day has begun! Get cracking!” We reduce the hormones that make us sleepy and produce more hormones that allow us to do the things that need to get done.

·       As the sun went down, our body starts to produce more melatonin, which produces that sleepy feeling and encourages us to rest/recover.  Our only option for light back then was a candle or campfire. If that went out, we’d have moonlight and nothing else.

·       While sleeping, our bodies knew to cut back on urine production, decrease body temperature, decrease heart rate, and muscle activity.  Our brains are still highly active during our sleeping.

 

Unfortunately, these days, our bodies aren’t tied to the rise and fall of that giant ball of gas above us. Instead, we use electricity, alarm clocks, computer screens, smart phone screens, and all other sorts of outside stimuli to adjust our natural sleeping schedule. This means that our bodies often have no effin’ clue what time it is!

 

Here’s how we can get back to our roots:

 

Trying to get to bed sooner or fall asleep sooner? Limit your exposure to the blue glow of your computer screens, TV screens, and phones later in the evening.  Our bodies look at blue light and think “Sun is up! Sky is blue! Energy! WEEE!” Conversely, lights with a red/orange hue are more reminiscent of a campfire or candle.  

 

·       If you are somebody who has to spend time on your computer at night, consider installing a program like F.lux – it syncs with the sunrise and sunset in your time zone, gradually shifting your screens hue from Blue and bright to red and dim.  I’ve been using the app for over a week now and have quickly adjusted to it.

·       Purchase old-man blue blocker glasses which limits the colors your eyes are exposed to after the sun has gone.

·       Consider purchasing red lightbulbs to install in your bedroom.

·       Consider getting black-out curtains for your bedroom windows, especially if you live in a city.

·       No TV in bed.  This might be incredibly difficult for you if you’ve been falling asleep to TV for years.  Instead of falling asleep with the blue glow of a TV at the foot of your bed, read a book – real books or read on a Kindle, no iPads! trust me, it will put you right to sleep.

·       Buy the right TYPE of Mattress for you

·       Have allergies? Try a hypoallergenic pillowcase!  Your allergies could be affecting you while you sleep and having the proper pillowcase can make a world of a difference.

 

How to get more sleep

 

So we’ve covered how to get BETTER sleep, what if you also need to get more of it? In order to start getting more sleep, sleep must become more of a priority. If you constantly stay up too late because things need to get done, evaluate how your time is spent after work. Seriously, think about it!

 

Are you doing the important tasks first?

 

Are you watching late night shows long after they’ve become enjoyable, simply because your DVR records them?

 

Are you checking your smart phone while in bed, watching Vine videos, or using your laptop to watch more shows you don’t really care about on Netflix?

 

Here are the best practical tips for giving you the greatest chance at getting into bed earlier:

 

·       Don’t drink caffeine after lunch if possible.  Caffeine can have an effect up to 6 hours after consumption.  We love caffeine for many reasons (in moderation); however, you want to make sure its not consumed too late or your body will revolt.

 

·       Turn off the electronics sooner.  I have to enforce a “laptops closed by 11PM” or a “TV off after 10PM” rule on many nights or I never get to bed. I get lost in internetland far too easily.  Putting in actual barriers really helps.  If you find yourself checking Facebook and Twitter and other sites incessantly, BLOCK YOURSELF from those sites after a certain time.

·       Stop watching crap TV shows! DVRs can be helpful, but it’s so easy to record shows without second thought…and then we end up spending WAY too much time watching TV.  

·       Shift things by 15 minutes every week. If you want to get to bed sooner, don’t just try to get to bed an hour earlier than normal. You’ll probably lie in bed for that whole hour wondering why you can’t fall asleep, stressing yourself out and making things worse. I shifted my pattern by waking up 15 minutes earlier and getting to bed 15 minutes sooner. Then I repeated that process over a series of weeks. Eventually, you can shift your bedtime by an hour or two but do it gradually!

 

How to wake up better

 

Is there any more annoying sound in the world than the “beep beep beep” of an alarm clock?  So here you are, dreaming about riding a dragon with Daenerys Targaryen, doing improv with Liam Neeson, and playing poker with Iron Man and Spock…and that damn alarm clock wakes you up.  You are now incredibly groggy and miserable.

 

Here’s what’s happening: Remember earlier how we talked about different sleep cycles?  Depending on which cycle you were woken up during, your body can struggle to move from “asleep” to “wide awake.” Wake up in the right phase and you can feel energized and ready to go. Wake up in the wrong phase and you will feel lethargic and sleepy. Because we’re often waking up at times when we’re not ready to wake up, we need to use technology to our advantage.

 

This is why snoozing is a horrible idea!

 

Instead of snoozing, set your alarm for 30 minutes later and SKIP snoozing entirely.  If this is an issue for you, put your alarm across the room so you need to physically get out of bed to turn it off! 

I’ve been using the Sleep Cycle App to wake up and it’s been really interesting. You simply put the time in which you want to wake up, put your phone on your bed, and it will wake you up slowly and quietly in at the best point in a 30-minute window. Because it also tracks your sleep incredibly accurately, it’s probably the best 99 cents I’ve ever spent on an app. Try a dawn-simulator alarm clock.  Rather than waking yourself up in the pitch black with a disgusting beeping noise, why not gradually rise as if there was a natural sunrise in your room?

 

Still feeling groggy?

 

Go for a walk first thing; a mile every morning, if you can.   Walking outside and seeing that blue sky can trigger your body to release the hormones that encourage you to feel more awake and alive.

 

What about naps?

 

Although generally not part of a day here in the states, we’re actually programmed to desire a quick nap in the early afternoon. In other countries, naps are more socially acceptable (Siesta?  Si, por favor!).  If you feel bad that you get tired in the early afternoon, it’s not because you’re lazy. It’s because you’re naturally wired for naptime.  Now, you might still be lazy, but it’s not related to your nap schedule.

 

What about second sleep?

 

Biphasic Sleep is sleeping in two distinct periods. We’re gonna go back in the day again: during winter months, night time could last 12-14 hours. With our bodies production of melatonin (the “sleepy time” hormone) kicking into high gear when that sun drops, people had nothing else to do (no TV, PS4, or iPads) and would fall asleep  early. Then they would wake up for an hour or two in the middle of the night to read, pray, or think, and then fall back asleep for another 4-5 hours before waking up for the day.

 

If you’ve ever gone to bed at a normal hour, and then woke up in the middle of the night without being able to fall back asleep for an hour or so, you know what I’m talking about. Here’s the thing: this is actually quite natural! Rather than freaking the heck out and lying in bed wondering why you can’t fall asleep…consider it something that is more common than our current sleep schedule. Don’t be afraid to turn on the light and read a book or use the time for meditation until you can fall back asleep. This one ‘mental shift’ alone can keep your stress levels down and let you get back to sleep faster and provide you with BETTER sleep.

 

 Fish on Friday 



Why Fish on Friday?[4]

 

Many major world religions have dietary rules which are meant to be followed for a period of time (e.g., Ramadan, Lent) or are prescribed lifestyles (e.g., Kosher, Halal).  The practice of eating fish on Friday – still followed by many Catholics today – was written about in the first century A.D.  According to Christian teaching, Jesus died on a Friday, and people fasted as a sacrifice in his memory.   While fasting is part of many religious traditions, it does not always mean abstention from all food and drink.  In this case, fasting meant that people stopped eating the flesh of warm-blooded animals on Fridays; cold-blooded fish could still be consumed.

 

Fish has been an important part of human diet from the time of Stone Age hunter‐gatherers, who ate the meat of warm-blooded animals, plants, and fish. Some of our earliest cookbooks are clay tablets from the 18th century B.C. (housed in Yale University’s Babylonian Collection) that include recipes for preparing fish.  Fish has always been a primary ingredient in Jewish cookery because it was plentiful, easy to prepare, and symbolized fertility and prosperity.

 

Additional symbolism has been attached to fish (the Old Testament’s claim that God created fish and marine life on the fifth day (Friday), most of the apostles were fishermen who then became “fishers of men” who gathered converts to Christianity, and the use of the fish symbol in early Christianity).  Fish were also important to the Greeks, Romans, and other pagans who used the fish symbol prior to its adoption by Christians.  This meant that early Christians could use the mark without drawing undesired attention to themselves.   

 

The 4th century Council of Nicea formalized the tradition of 40 days of Lent (from Ash Wednesday to Easter), during which only weekdays are counted as fasting days when it was forbidden to eat meat (including poultry), animal fats, milk, or eggs. The medieval Christian calendar named even more meat-free days:  Fridays, Wednesdays, Saturdays, Advent (the weeks before Christmas) and Lent (the weeks before Easter).  Some suggest that the medieval Catholic Church increased the number of fasting days/fish days to prop up the fishing economy dominant in monasteries, however Brian Fagan (UC Santa Barbara) and Michael Foley (Baylor University) both discredit this theory.

 

It has also been suggested that the timing of fasting from meat and dairy products in Spring is not coincidental. Rather, it comes at a time when stored provisions might be running low, fields are bare, ewes are not lambing, and hens are laying fewer eggs. Fasting in Spring also pre-dates the Christian era.  In addition, many fish varieties are high in B Vitamins, Niacin, and Folate, which would offer nutritional benefits after a winter of weak sunshine and a declining choice of vegetables.

 

The fish industry was well-established and vital to the medieval economy.  Descriptions, depictions (including 130 churches with relevant wall paintings, and artifacts of fishing are plentiful from the Middle Ages (5th - 15th century).  The use of fishhooks, spears, nets, traps, and even fish farming was widespread throughout Europe.  Sometime around 1000 AD, there was a shift from the consumption of locally caught freshwater fish to ocean caught fish.  While this might have been a response to overfishing of local fish, dried Scandinavian cod appears as an important traded commodity. The drying and smoking of herring and cod as a way of preserving them for eating later, in the centuries before refrigeration, made fishing a growth industry. Vikings, who were expert at preserving cod, were sailing first to Iceland and Greenland, and then onto Newfoundland to fish where Atlantic cod were plentiful.

 

Vikings were thought to have developed an early sun compass, allowing them during mid summers to measure the declination of the sun to keep them on latitude courses, thus able to steer relatively straight courses to and from these areas across the North Atlantic. In this way, the growing demand for fish spurred advances in Medieval navigation and the discovery of new lands.

 

Fish fasting continued to stimulate growth in seafood right up into modern times and played quite a role here in the development of North America’s cod and other fishing industries. Fast-forwarding to the twentieth century, when an early McDonald’s franchise owner wrestled with the challenge of selling burgers on Friday, he developed the solution in the ever-popular Filet-O-Fish sandwich. Indeed, when the Pope scaled back Fish Fridays in the 1960s to just the 40-day period of Lent, cod prices dropped dramatically as demand fell for a period of time.

Catechism of the Catholic Church

PART TWO: THE CELEBRATION OF THE CHRISTIAN MYSTERY

Why the liturgy?

1066 In the Symbol of the faith the Church confesses the mystery of the Holy Trinity and of the plan of God's "good pleasure" for all creation: the Father accomplishes the "mystery of his will" by giving his beloved Son and his Holy Spirit for the salvation of the world and for the glory of his name.

Such is the mystery of Christ, revealed and fulfilled in history according to the wisely ordered plan that St. Paul calls the "plan of the mystery" and the patristic tradition will call the "economy of the Word incarnate" or the "economy of salvation."

1067 "The wonderful works of God among the people of the Old Testament were but a prelude to the work of Christ the Lord in redeeming mankind and giving perfect glory to God. He accomplished this work principally by the Paschal mystery of his blessed Passion, Resurrection from the dead, and glorious Ascension, whereby 'dying he destroyed our death, rising he restored our life.' For it was from the side of Christ as he slept the sleep of death upon the cross that there came forth 'the wondrous sacrament of the whole Church."'

For this reason, the Church celebrates in the liturgy above all the Paschal mystery by which Christ accomplished the work of our salvation.

1068 It is this mystery of Christ that the Church proclaims and celebrates in her liturgy so that the faithful may live from it and bear witness to it in the world:

For it is in the liturgy, especially in the divine sacrifice of the Eucharist, that "the work of our redemption is accomplished," and it is through the liturgy especially that the faithful are enabled to express in their lives and manifest to others the mystery of Christ and the real nature of the true Church.

What does the word liturgy mean?

1069 The word "liturgy" originally meant a "public work" or a "service in the name of/on behalf of the people."
In Christian tradition it means the participation of the People of God in "the work of God."
Through the liturgy Christ, our redeemer and high priest, continues the work of our redemption in, with, and through his Church.

1070 In the New Testament the word "liturgy" refers not only to the celebration of divine worship but also to the proclamation of the Gospel and to active charity. In all of these situations it is a question of the service of God and neighbor.
In a liturgical celebration the Church is servant in the image of her Lord, the one "leitourgos"; she shares in Christ's priesthood (worship), which is both prophetic (proclamation) and kingly (service of charity):

The liturgy then is rightly seen as an exercise of the priestly office of Jesus Christ.
It involves the presentation of man's sanctification under the guise of signs perceptible by the senses and its accomplishment in ways appropriate to each of these signs.
In it full public worship is performed by the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ, that is, by the Head and his members.
From this it follows that every liturgical celebration, because it is an action of Christ the priest and of his Body which is the Church, is a sacred action surpassing all others.
No other action of the Church can equal its efficacy by the same title and to the same degree.

Liturgy as source of life

1071 As the work of Christ liturgy is also an action of his Church. It makes the Church present and manifests her as the visible sign of the communion in Christ between God and men. It engages the faithful in the new life of the community and involves the "conscious, active, and fruitful participation" of everyone.

1072 "The sacred liturgy does not exhaust the entire activity of the Church": it must be preceded by evangelization, faith, and conversion. It can then produce its fruits in the lives of the faithful: new life in the Spirit, involvement in the mission of the Church, and service to her unity.

Prayer and liturgy

1073 The liturgy is also a participation in Christ's own prayer addressed to the Father in the Holy Spirit. In the liturgy, all Christian prayer finds its source and goal. Through the liturgy the inner man is rooted and grounded in "the great love with which [the Father] loved us" in his beloved Son. It is the same "marvelous work of God" that is lived and internalized by all prayer, "at all times in the Spirit."

Catechesis and liturgy

1074 "The liturgy is the summit toward which the activity of the Church is directed; it is also the font from which all her power flows."
It is therefore the privileged place for catechizing the People of God.
"Catechesis is intrinsically linked with the whole of liturgical and sacramental activity, for it is in the sacraments, especially in the Eucharist, that Christ Jesus works in fullness for the transformation of men."

1075 Liturgical catechesis aims to initiate people into the mystery of Christ (It is "mystagogy." ) by proceeding from the visible to the invisible, from the sign to the thing signified, from the "sacraments" to the "mysteries."
Such catechesis is to be presented by local and regional catechisms.
This Catechism, which aims to serve the whole Church in all the diversity of her rites and cultures, will present what is fundamental and common to the whole Church in the liturgy as mystery and as celebration, and then the seven sacraments and the sacramentals.

MEDICINAL PLANTS Day 9 HOUSEHOLD PROTECTION-Revealed by Heaven to Luz De María

It is necessary for humanity to cry out to the Most Holy Trinity in order to obtain Divine Mercy and for this pandemic be appeased in the Divine Will, and together with prayer, I invite you to place blessed oil -and if you have the oil of the Good Samaritan, put a drop of this oil in the blessed oil - and with it mark the frame of the front door of your house and of the rear door, as well as to remain in a state of Grace, which is essential at this time. Blessed Virgin Mary, 03.15.2020

 

Daily Devotions

·       30 DAY TRIBUTE TO MARY 11th ROSE: Virgin Most Faithful, Looks for Lost Jesus at the Temple

o   30 Days of Women and Herbs – Frauendreissiger

§  St. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum)

·       Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: The sanctification of the Church Militant.

·       Religion in the Home for Preschool: August

·       Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus

·       Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·       Drops of Christ’s Blood

·       Universal Man Plan

·       Operation Purity

·       Rosary




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