NINE-MONTH NOVENA TO OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE

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

Friday, September 15, 2023

 


DAY 32 - MARY, GATE OF HEAVEN, PRAY FOR US


Join us for Rosary Coast to Coast!


In the Battle of Lepanto, the Turks believed Christianity had become so weak, it was time to move in and "deal the last blow." Outnumbered, Pope St. Pius V called upon the world to pray the rosary. Miraculously, victory was won on October 7, 1571, which brought the Feast of Our Lady of Victory.


Here we are again, my brothers and sisters. The enemy appears to be attempting to "deal the last blow." There is no doubt we are living in diabolically influenced times. This, while Godless leaders and influencers in our nation have usurped the phrase, “This is a battle for the soul of America,” as their evil abominations unto God easily become a “new normal” in the lives of our loved ones?! Those who choose to stand in the “Spirit of Truth” are mocked, persecuted, abandoned and put out?! The time is now to do the "Lepanto thing!"


PLEASE join us for Rosary Coast to Coast on the Feast of Our Lady of Victory, October 7, 2023 at 3:00pm CST to pray the Glorious Mysteries as a nation. It simply means to gather with a group of 2 or more outside (if possible) as we call upon the powerful intercession of Our Lady to Heal Our Land!!


Go to RosaryCoasttoCoast.com to find more information and register your group.


Let’s … UNITE AT THE FOOT OF THE CROSS!!


 

STATE OF GRACE 


Devil’s Tactic #1 - Cut us off from our supply lines


The first major strategy from the father of lies is actually as old as the Garden of Eden itself. It is simply to convince us we do not need God (Gen. 3:5-6), nor do we need his strength and his power (Eph. 6:10).


In modern times, we have witnessed this in the effective campaign of militant secularists who have sought to de-mythologize our faith, a flat out rejection of the supernatural power of God. Once the devil has us convinced that we can challenge him under our own natural power, or simply deny that he even exists, he’s cut us off from the only real power capable of defeating him: God’s supernatural grace.


More and more common is the modern “secularized” version of religion that sees it reduced to a kind of psychotherapy for self-actualization. Some seminaries seem to focus on training therapeutic practitioners rather than theologians. In other words, instead of seeing Jesus as God with us — a real and ever-present source of supernatural love and grace — he is reduced to a historic figure we simply emulate as a model in our efforts at self-actualization.


Sadly, this secular version of religion has become so prevalent that most people’s eyes begin to glaze over at the mere mention of God’s supernatural grace as a necessary source of power in our lives. St. Peter warns us to be fortes in fide, strong in faith, because the devil prowls around like a lion, looking for someone to devour (1 Pt 5:8-9). Lions size up a herd to find the weakest and easiest target. Once we are detached from God and his supernatural grace, we are powerless to defend ourselves from the tactics of the devil.


Our ancestors and all of the saints knew all about this supernatural power and strength and that being in a state of grace was the armor of God that was to be treasured and protected at all cost. Like the scriptural images for the kingdom of God, this Divine Life in God (state of grace) is the “hidden treasure” and the “pearl of great price” (Mt 13:44-46). (excerpt from my book, Church Militant Field Manual).


 

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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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!


OUR LADY OF SORROWS-ROSH HASHANAH begins at sunset.

Psalm 31, Verse 20:

20 How great is your goodness, Lord, stored up for those who fear you. You display it for those who trust you, in the sight of the children of Adam. 

Reviewing this verse one wonders, what exactly does “stored up mean”. A little research reveals that stored up means to gather or amass something. King David is professing here that just as in the natural world there are laws that if followed lead to exponential growth so it follows that if a believer but trust in the Lord and retain a Godly fear versus the fear of man; there will be a great abundance in spiritual growth. 

This growth will be so great that it will be accompanied by physical abundance, so that all may see, as stated in the verse “in the sight of the children of Adam” that God has blessed those who love and trust him.  Fear not, for God is with you!  Trust in Him as you would a mighty fortress in harsh conditions. 

Our Lady of Sorrows

 

We must follow the example of Our Lady of Sorrows and bring our savior to others and undergo the joys with the sorrows. Today would be a good day to contemplate the seven sorrows of our Lady and to pray and honor her for she is our mother too.

This feast is dedicated to the spiritual martyrdom of Mary, Mother of God, and her compassion with the sufferings of her Divine Son, Jesus. In her suffering as co-redeemer, she reminds us of the tremendous evil of sin and shows us the way of true repentance. May the numerous tears of the Mother of God be conducive to our salvation; with which tears Thou, O God, art able to wash away the sins of the whole world.

As Mary stood at the foot of the Cross on which Jesus hung, the sword of sorrow Simeon had foretold pierced her soul. Below are the seven sorrows of Mary:

  1. The prophecy of Simeon (Luke 2:25-35)
  2. The flight into Egypt (Matthew 2:13-15)
  3. Loss of the Child Jesus for three days (Luke 2:41-50)
  4. Mary meets Jesus on his way to Calvary (Luke 23:27-31; John 19:17)
  5. Crucifixion and Death of Jesus (John 19:25-30)
  6. The body of Jesus being taken from the Cross (Psalm 130; Luke 23:50-54; John 19:31-37)
  7. The burial of Jesus (Isaiah 53:8; Luke 23:50-56; John 19:38-42; Mark 15:40-47)

Pope Pius VII[1] approved another series of prayers in honor of the Seven Sorrows for daily meditation in 1815:

 

O God, come to my assistance; O Lord, make haste to help me. Glory be to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

 

1.     I grieve for you, O Mary most sorrowful, in the affliction of your tender heart at the prophecy of the holy and aged Simeon. Dear Mother, by your heart so afflicted, obtain for me the virtue of humility and the gift of the holy fear of God. Hail Mary…

2.     I grieve for you, O Mary most sorrowful, in the anguish of your most affectionate heart during the flight into Egypt and your sojourn there. Dear Mother, by your heart so troubled, obtain for me the virtue of generosity, especially toward the poor, and the gift of piety. Hail Mary…

3.     I grieve for you, O Mary most sorrowful, in those anxieties which tried your troubled heart at the loss of your dear Jesus. Dear Mother, by your heart so full of anguish, obtain for me the virtue of chastity and the gift of knowledge. Hail Mary…

4.     I grieve for you, O Mary most sorrowful, in the consternation of your heart at meeting Jesus as He carried His Cross. Dear Mother, by your heart so troubled, obtain for me the virtue of patience and the gift of fortitude. Hail Mary…

5.     I grieve for you, O Mary most sorrowful, in the martyrdom which your generous heart endured in standing near Jesus in His agony. Dear Mother, by your afflicted heart obtain for me the virtue of temperance and the gift of counsel. Hail Mary…

6.     I grieve for you, O Mary most sorrowful, in the wounding of your compassionate heart, when the side of Jesus was struck by the lance before His Body was removed from the Cross. Dear Mother, by your heart thus transfixed, obtain for me the virtue of fraternal charity and the gift of understanding. Hail Mary…

7.     I grieve for you, O Mary most sorrowful, for the pangs that wrenched your most loving heart at the burial of Jesus. Dear Mother, by your heart sunk in the bitterness of desolation, obtain for me the virtue of diligence and the gift of wisdom. Hail Mary…

Let Us Pray: 

Let intercession be made for us, we beseech You, O Lord Jesus Christ, now and at the hour of our death, before the throne of Your mercy, by the Blessed Virgin Mary, Your Mother, whose most holy soul was pierced by a sword of sorrow in the hour of Your bitter Passion. Through You, O Jesus Christ, Savior of the world, Who with the Father and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns world without end. Amen. 

Daily meditate upon the Seven Sorrows. Please the Sacred Heart of the Redeemer by pondering the Sorrowful Heart of the Co-redemptrix. Receive the remarkably generous graces which come from uniting our hearts each day to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of the Mother.

St. Bridget of Sweden (1303-1373), Our Lady directly revealed the amazing graces granted by her Son for all those who daily and pray seven Hail Mary’s while meditating on her seven dolors and tears:

1. “I will grant peace to their families.”

2. “They will be enlightened about the Divine Mysteries.”

3. “I will console them in their pains, and I will accompany them in their work.”

4. “I will give them as much as they ask for as long as it does not oppose the adorable will of my Divine Son or the sanctification of their souls.”

5. “I will defend them in their spiritual battles with the infernal enemy and I will protect them at every instant of their lives.”

6. “I will visibly help them at the moment of their death—they will see the face of their mother.”

7. “I have obtained this grace from my divine Son, that those who propagate this devotion to my tears and dolors will be taken directly from this earthly life to eternal happiness, since all their sins will be forgiven, and my Son will be their eternal consolation and joy.”[2]

Things to Do[3]

·       Listen to the Catholic Culture podcast Ep. 72—Stabat Mater—interview with Francesco Cotticelli, exploring the setting of Stabat Mater, completed by the 26-year-old Giovanni Battista Pergolesi (1710-1736) as he was dying of tuberculosis.

·       Teach your children the Seven Sorrows of Mary. Read more about this devotion. September is traditionally dedicated to Our Lady of Sorrows.

·       Present different art pieces of Our Lady of Sorrows, or illustration of one of her sorrows, for meditation and discussion. There are so many different pieces from all different eras, countries and mediums. Search words for art titles would be Lamentation, Deposition, Pieta, Dolorosa, Sorrows, etc. Some samples:

o   The Seven Sorrows of the Virgin by Albrecht Durer

o   Michelangelo's Pieta

o   Pieta by Giovanni Bellini

o   Vincent Van Gogh's Pieta

o   Titian's Mater Dolorosa

o   Different artists on the Presentation in the Temple

o   Various artists on the Flight into Egypt

·       Discuss why Mary is called the Queen of Martyrs.

·       Make a heart-shaped cake for dessert, decorated with the swords piercing the heart.

·       Think of ways to make reparation to Mary for the sins committed against Our Lord.

·       Pray the short prayer or ejaculation, Holy Mother, imprint deeply upon my heart the wounds of the Crucified.

·       Read or sing the Stabat Mater, perhaps incorporating it with the Stations of the Cross.

·       In Italy, the title of Our Lady of Sorrows is Maria Santissima Addolorata. This devotion began in the 1200s. She is the patron of many Italian cities. In southern Italy there is La Festa della Madonna dei Sette Dolori (the festival of the Seven Sorrows of the Madonna), instituted in 1423, also called Madonna dell’Addolorata Festival. The food connected to this festival is cuccia salata, wheat berries cooked in meat broth and layered with goat or pork.

·       I will be hiking and praying using my reflections in my book Divine Mercy Hikes.

 


Our Lady most likely celebrated Rosh Hashanah



 Rosh Hashanah[4] 

Rosh Hashanah (Hebrew: ראש השנה) is the Jewish New Year.  Rosh Hashanah literally translates to the Head of the Year.  It is a two-day festival.  In the Bible, it is called Yom Ha-Zikkaron, the day of remembrance or Yom Teruah the day of the sounding of the shofar-(Leviticus 23:24-25). Jews start Rosh Hashanah festivals with lighting of the candles and synagogue prayers.  On the eve of Rosh Hashanah, Jews eat an apple dipped in honey to signify a sweet new year to come.  They also place a fish’s head at the table to commemorate 'being a head and not a tail'. 


Rosh Hashanah Facts

 

·       In synagogues it is common for 100 notes to be sounded with a Ram's horn as a call to repentance.

·       Jews typically wear new clothes on Rosh Hashanah and eat new fruits that have not yet been tasted in the season.  Customary foods include round hallah bread with raisins, pomegranates, pumpkins, carrots, and honey cake.

·       For Rosh Hashana, many Jews 'cast off their sins' to a running water stream/sea containing fish (the Tashlich custom).  This is to symbolically purge one's body of sin and cast the sins onto the fish.

·       On Rosh Hashanah, it is believed that the fate of all Jews and Gentiles is defined by God for that year.  Jews greet each other with many Happy New Year wishes.  It is customary to therefore greet people with a wish for a happy New Year and to 'be inscribed for a good year' - meaning to be allocated by God a full year of healthy life.

·       New Year prayers include many passages relating to the sovereignty and dominion of God over the entire world.  One of these prayers is recited daily and is called Aleinu leshabei'ach (it is our duty to praise God).  However, on Rosh Hashanah, during this prayer, Orthodox Jews bow down to accept the full Sovereignty of the Lord. 

Rosh Hashanah Top Events and Things to Do

 

·       Send New Year's Greeting Cards to your Jewish friends.

·       Celebrate the Jewish New Year with a Rosh Hashana Concert.  Popular concerts are held in major cities such as New York and London.

·       Attend a local Rosh Hashanah service in a synagogue near you.

 

National Cheese Toast Day[5]


Cheese Toast is a delicious dish. It’s a California-born favorite that has grown in popularity and is now beloved by many people all over the world. It is simple and easy to make (depending on who is cooking, of course), and it is usually very filling. In fact, it is easy for people to search all over the internet for recipes–and they will probably all be good.

Following are some interesting facts and ideas about this tasty day. Get ready to celebrate!

History of National Cheese Toast Day

This creative and unique day was created by Del Johnson of Los Angeles in 1958 when he opened his first Sizzler restaurant. Sizzler’s cheese toast was originally made using an egg bread and then it used a Parmesan cheese mixture on top. Then, over time, the chefs switched from a white egg-based bread to a French bread that had a margarine base. Nowadays, Sizzler has expanded its restaurants to more than 250 in the United States. Plus they also have restaurants all over the world in countries such as Australia, China, Japan, Thailand, and Puerto Rico.

In connection to this special day, Sizzler has dedicated this day as their National Cheese Toast Day, in which they usually give out free cheese toast at many of their restaurant locations! This toast recipe, despite its, is a classic that has been around for over five decades–which is quite impressive.

How to celebrate National Cheese Toast Day

Enjoying this day has everything to do with putting cheese on buttery bread, toasting it and then browning it in the oven until it’s golden and delicious. Try these ideas for celebrating the day:

Enjoy Cheese Toast at Sizzler

Perhaps it would be a good idea to go back to the beginning where it all began. Try to find a Sizzler nearby where their famous cheese toast can be ordered and enjoyed. Don’t forget to ask if they have a special discount in honor of National Cheese Toast Day! While at the restaurant, be sure to take a cheese toast selfie and share it with friends. 

Try Making Cheese Toast at Home

Probably just as easy as going to Sizzler, cheese toast is possibly the easiest thing that a person can make at home in their own kitchen. All it takes to make it at home is to spread butter or margarine on it. To get a little fancier, go ahead and put herbs in the butter also. It’s possible to get as creative with it as you want, but putting it in the oven and making the toast toasty is what matters!

Once it is made, Cheese Toast can be eaten for a snack, enjoyed as an appetizer, or used as a side dish to sop up extra pasta sauce. Try it dipped in tomato soup or eating it with a green salad to add some flavor and crunch.

Get Creative Making Cheese Toast

To really celebrate this day, try out some interesting cheese toast recipes that can be made at home. Depending on what mood strikes at the moment, it’s possible to go for almost any style. There are all different kinds of options for cheese, such as cheddar, Swiss, provolone, goat cheese, etc. In addition, a variety of bread options are available, including white, rye, wheat, French, Italian, or just any kind of bread.

The tastiest versions will be made with hearty, artisan breads. Some people like to add toppings such as roasted peppers, salami, avocado, spinach leaves, and so much more. The options are virtually endless when it comes to National Cheese Toast Day.

Consider these interesting, unique options for Cheese Toast, or come up with your own:

  • Welsh Rarebit Cheese Toast. Turn that boring cheese toast into something delicious by creating a cheesy bechamel sauce and mixing it with canned asparagus. Pour on top of the toast and serve (before it gets soggy!).
  • Bacon and Raisin Cheddar Toast. This delightful treat tastes like its invention may have been a happy accident when the creator had run out of normal bread. Place cheddar cheese slices and bacon slices on buttered Raisin Bread and bake in the oven until toasty.
  • Onion Apple Cheese Toast. This one also sounds a little strange, but it’s delicious. Simply grill some onions until soft and golden while pre-toasting slices of Rye Bread in the oven. Pile onions, apple slices and sliced Gruyere cheese, then broil until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Cheese Toast and Toasted Cheese: Know the Difference

With the purity of the day at risk, it is important to understand that this is National Cheese Toast Day and not a day for a “toasted cheese” or a “cheese toastie”. Although they do sound similar, a toasted cheese/cheese toastie is a sandwich–the same one that is also sometimes called “grilled cheese”.

Toasted cheese is different from Cheese Toast in two ways. First, a toasted cheese is two pieces of bread stacked together with cheese and other ingredients in the middle. Cheese Toast only has one piece of bread.

Second, the sandwich is made on the stovetop by grilling it in a pan–leaving the cheese gooey. Cheese Toast is made by broiling the open-face bread on a pan in the oven, which leaves the cheese golden and delicious.

Whether plain and simple or fancy and gourmet, just eating cheese toast sounds good, doesn’t it? Sometimes the simplest recipe is the best way to go.

Fitness Friday[6]


Top 10 Things You Can Do TODAY to Improve Your Health

I love a good “Top Ten” list. It’s probably because I’m an impatient reader (ok, probably an impatient human in general but I’m working on it) and have been known to skip to the last chapter of a novel to see what happens. Who has time for plot development? We’re all rushed and over-busy. We leave little to no time for ourselves to do the things we should be doing: exercising, planning and eating healthy meals, taking time to do things we enjoy – it all gets pushed to the backburner during our crazy busy days. But I embolden you to take a few minutes to read this article… I’ll keep it short and sweet. This is my “Top Ten” list of the things that I feel make the biggest difference in the lives of my patients. True wellness happens when we pay attention to what matters most. To me, these are the things that truly matter.

1.     Be a nighttime creature of habit. Getting a good night’s sleep is paramount to improved health and wellbeing. We all know that we don’t feel very good when we don’t sleep well, but more importantly, chronic sleep deprivation can contribute serious health problems such as high blood pressure, increased stress hormones, and irregular heartbeat. To get a better night’s sleep, create nighttime habits that prepare your body and mind for sleep such as drinking herbal tea, taking a warm bath, meditation, and unplugging from all electronics an hour before bed.

2.     Drink more water. Think about how your house plants look after you forget to water them and imagine your body organs the same way when you’re dehydrated. The health benefits of water are numerous and include improved kidney function, weight management, and improved bowel function. So how much should you drink? Here’s an easy calculation: body weight x 2/3 = oz of water to consume daily. Increase and adjust for exercise.

3.     Practice daily meditation. In a recent article, published in the medical journal JAMA , researchers from John Hopkins University showed that mindfulness meditation can help ease anxiety, depression and pain. The practice of mindfulness meditation is simply sitting quietly and comfortably, focusing on your breathing, and bringing your mind’s attention to the present. Even 5 minutes of meditation per day (optimal is 30 minutes twice per day) can help balance both mind and body.

4.     Move your body every day. Yes, EVERY DAY. If I had to choose the single most important thing on this list to improve all aspects of health, exercise would win hands down. The goal should be to exercise 45-60 minutes 4-5 days per week, but it all counts! Park in the furthest parking spot (better yet, just walk!), take the stairs, do some squats while brushing your teeth – it all counts. Our bodies are meant to move and the more sedentary we are, the faster our bodies will break down. Make a commitment to break a sweat once a day.

5.     Eat more… (plants that is). With all the fad diets out there, it’s no wonder people are confused. This year has everyone back in hunter gatherer mode eating wild wildebeest cooked on a spit. I say, keep it simple – whole foods, no processed, mostly plants. A plant based diet is where it’s at. I love the quote from Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma, “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants”. If you fill your plate with mostly plants and eat sensible portion sizes of food that your great great grandmother would recognize as such, you’re probably doing ok.

6.     Take a good multivitamin and an extra D. You never know which vitamin or mineral you might be missing and depletion of only one essential nutrient can set off imbalances in a wide range of metabolic pathways. Poor diet, poor soil quality, and lack of variation in food intake are some of the reasons we find deficiencies. Eating a wide array of local, in season, organic fruits and veggies, taking a good multivitamin and a little extra vitamin D are all good things to do to ensure your body is functioning at its best.

7.     Connect with nature. “Go get your mind right” is something my husband tells me when he sees me stressing out or worrying, and this is my cue to go outdoors and clear my head. Nature puts things into perspective, and I can’t help but feel less stressed when I stand next to the ocean or go for a hike. Seeing the vastness and beauty of nature has a way of making problems seem less huge and horrifying. Managing and decreasing stress are vital to good health, so get YOUR mind right and get outdoors.

8.     Connect to the people you love. Did you know that loneliness is a risk factor for early death? I almost fell out of my seat when I recently read this in the medical journal, Science. To quote the authors, “Social relationships, or the relative lack thereof, constitute a major risk factor for health – rivaling the effect of well-established health risk factors such as cigarette smoking, blood pressure, blood lipids, obesity and physical activity.” I find it so fascinating and incredibly sad that being lonely can affect our physiology so much that it can increase our risk of early death. So connect with those you love, mend broken relationships, seek social connection, join a club or church group. Better yet, notice those around you who might be facing isolation and loneliness and reach out to them. Invite a neighbor to dinner. Not only will you improve your own health, but you just might increase the lifespan of someone around you. How amazing is that?

9.     Boost your health with a daily dose of gratitude. Research studies in mental health show that grateful people tend to be healthier than their not so grateful counterparts. They tend to engage in healthier lifestyle traits such as regular exercise and eating a healthy diet. Those who practice daily gratitude also tend to have better immune function, antioxidant function, and handle stress better which has all sorts of awesome health benefits such as decreasing the risk of heart disease and cancer. So here’s your prescription: Start your day either thinking about or writing down five things that you are grateful for. Dose it daily and you’ll be healthier and happier this year and years to come.

10.  Get a checkup. According to a recent study, nearly 50% of Americans have either high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes or a combination of the three. All three are major risk factors for heart disease which is the leading cause of death in this country. What’s more, close to 10% of patients with high blood pressure and high cholesterol don’t know they have it; 3% for diabetes. Take care of your ticker – go get a physical and some blood work. Knowledge is power!

Be well.

Catechism of the Catholic Church

PART TWO: THE CELEBRATION OF THE CHRISTIAN MYSTERY

SECTION TWO-THE SEVEN SACRAMENTS OF THE CHURCH

1210 Christ instituted the sacraments of the new law. There are seven: Baptism, Confirmation (or Chrismation), the Eucharist, Penance, the Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders and Matrimony. the seven sacraments touch all the stages and all the important moments of Christian life: they give birth and increase, healing and mission to the Christian's life of faith. There is thus a certain resemblance between the stages of natural life and the stages of the spiritual life.

1211 Following this analogy, the first chapter will expound the three sacraments of Christian initiation; the second, the sacraments of healing; and the third, the sacraments at the service of communion and the mission of the faithful. This order, while not the only one possible, does allow one to see that the sacraments form an organic whole in which each particular sacrament has its own vital place. In this organic whole, the Eucharist occupies a unique place as the "Sacrament of sacraments": "all the other sacraments are ordered to it as to their end."

Daily Devotions

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

·       Religion in the Home for Preschool: September

·       Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus

·       Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·       International Grenache Day

·       Drops of Christ’s Blood

·       Universal Man Plan

·       Operation Purity

·       Rosary


[6]https://cimedicalcenter.org/top-10-things-you-can-do-today-to-improve-your-health/









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