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Wednesday, July 10, 2024

 

11 bucket list trips in Europe that everyone should do in their lifetime

July 10

 Saint of the day:

Saint Amelia or Saint Amalberga

Dara’s Corner-It’s okay to have a Pina Colada-just keep your self-control.

·         National Pina Colada Day

Self-control[1] is the ability to regulate and alter your responses to avoid undesirable behaviors, increase desirable ones, and achieve long-term goals. Research has shown that possessing self-control can be important for health and well-being.1

Psychologists typically define self-control as:

  • The ability to control behaviors to avoid temptations and achieve goals
  • The ability to delay gratification and resist unwanted behaviors or urges
  • A limited resource that can be depleted

People use various terms for self-control, including discipline, determination, grit, willpower, and fortitude. Some researchers believe that self-control is partly determined by genetics,3 but it is also a skill you can strengthen with practice.

Self-control is one aspect of executive function, a set of abilities that helps people to plan, monitor, and achieve their goals. People with attention-deficit attention disorder (ADHD) often have characteristics linked to problems with executive function.


FEAST OF THE SEVEN HOLY BROTHERS

 

Hosea, Chapter 10, Verse 3

For now they will say, “We have no king! Since we do not FEAR the LORD, the king—what could he do for us?”

 

Christ is the strength of the weak and the humble confidence of those who trust in him. Christ says to us,

 

My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; I know them, and they follow me. (Jn. 10:27)

 

Short Explanation of the Lord’s Prayer[1] 

Why does God wish us to pray to Him? 

To remind us:

1. that all good things come from Him, and that without Him we have nothing.

2. That we may confide in Him and try to make ourselves worthy of His divine grace, by thoughts pleasing to Him, and valuing more, and using better, the graces we receive. 

Why is our prayers often not heard? 

It is because we often ask for something that would be more hurtful than profitable to us. 

When ought we to pray?

 We should pray at all times, but especially at,

1, morning, noon, and night.

2, in time of great temptation.

3, when receiving the sacraments.

4, when about to undertake anything important.

5, at the hour of death. 

Which is the best of all prayers? 

The Lord’s Prayer: but though we say it a hundred times, it will fail to produce its beneficial effects if we repeat it thoughtlessly, without thinking of its meaning or purpose. 

Why does this prayer commence with “Our Father?” 

To encourage us thereby to a child-like confidence in God. As our Father, Who loves all men, and is ever ready to help them. 

Why do we say, “Who art in heaven,” since God is everywhere? 

We say this to admonish us to lift up our hearts to heaven, our true home, where God has set up the throne of His kingdom. 

What do we ask of God in this prayer? 

In the first petition, “hallowed be Thy name,” we pray that God may be known and loved by all men, and that His name may be glorified by a Christian life.

In the second petition, “Thy kingdom come,” we pray God to enter and rule in our hearts by His grace, to spread His Church throughout the whole world, and after our death to award us eternal happiness.

In the third petition, “Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven,” we offer ourselves entirely to God, and declare ourselves ready to be subject to the dispositions of His holy will, as are the angels in heaven, and pray to Him for grace to do this.

In the fourth petition, “give us this day our daily bread,” we ask for all things which we need for the body, as food and clothing, and for the soul, as grace and the divine word.

In the fifth petition, “forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those that trespass against us,” we pray to God for forgiveness, but only as far as we forgive those that injure us. We must therefore remember that we shall not obtain forgiveness from God so long as we have in our heart’s hatred against anyone.

In the sixth petition, “and lead us not into temptation,” we acknowledge our frailty, and ask God to remove temptations from us, or, if He permit us to fall into those which the world, the flesh, and the devil prepare for us, to give us grace not to consent to them, but, by combating and overcoming them, to gain the merit and the crown of justice.

In the seventh petition, “but deliver us from evil,” we pray to God to preserve us from sin, and the occasions of sin; an evil death and hell also from all temporal evils, so far as may be for the salvation of our souls.

 

America is now at the threshold of history

 

Like Israel in Hosea’s time America has drifted into serious sin. According to John Maxwell Israel while in captivity had no real leadership (much like America) and had broken the “Law of Solid Ground.” The 6th irrefutable law of leadership—The Law of Solid Ground states that “trust is the foundation of leadership.” Israel’s leadership made false promises that had eroded the people’s confidence in their leaders and people follow only in proportion to their trust in the leader.


 

Americans are a just people and fair people and our hearts go out to the world.

 

Yet what are we to do?

 

Many years ago, while reviewing the CIA handbook I noticed that economically all of the nations that have been giving us the most trouble militarily were also on the list of those countries with the worst per capita income: people who make less than 200 dollars a year. I thought rather than do battle with these people would it not be better to bring the economic power of America to these populaces and help them to improve their lives and rid themselves of their gangs and dictators.

 

Thus, bringing up their per capita income; what would the effect be on those who we may have to embattle? I questioned would improving their lives in their own country decrease our need to do battle?

 

I decided to do an experiment. With a little research I invested in one of the stocks from one of the poorest countries: Zimbabwe. After three months I sold my stock after doubling my money. My point is perhaps we as American’s can do more by helping the downtrodden in building up their own countries.

 

Feast of the Seven Holy Brothers[2]



Although there are passed down stories about the Seven Holy Brothers and their mother, the current Roman Martyrology only mentions the brothers by name (Felix, Philip, Vitalis, Martialis, Alexander, Silanus, and Januarius) and where they were buried. Older Acts include the mother named Felicitas or Felicity as also a martyr. We are including the older version of their martyrdom here:

Saint Felicity was a noble Roman matron, distinguished above all for her virtue. This mother of seven children raised her sons in the fear of the Lord, and after the death of her husband, served God in continence, concerning herself only with good works. Her good examples and those of her children brought a number of pagans to renounce their superstitions, and also encouraged the Christians to show themselves worthy of their vocation. The pagan priests, furious at seeing their gods abandoned, denounced her. She appeared with her pious sons before the prefect of Rome, who exhorted her to sacrifice to idols, but in reply heard a generous confession of faith.

Wretched woman, he said to her, how can you be so barbarous as to expose your children to torments and death?

Have pity on these tender creatures, who are in the flower of their age and can aspire to the highest positions in the Empire! Felicity replied, My children will live eternally with Jesus Christ, if they are faithful; they will have only eternal torments to await, if they sacrifice to idols. Your apparent pity is but a cruel impiety. Then, turning to her children, she said: Look towards heaven, where Jesus Christ is waiting for you with His Saints! Be faithful in His love, and fight courageously for your souls.

The Judge, taking the children one by one, tried to overcome their constancy. He began with Januarius but received for his answer: What you advise me to do is contrary to reason; Jesus, the Savior, will preserve me, I hope, from such impiety. Felix, the second, was then brought in. When they urged him to sacrifice, he answered: There is only one God, and it is to Him that we must offer the sacrifice of our hearts. Use all artifices, every refinement of cruelty, you will not make us betray our faith! The other brothers, when questioned, answered with the same firmness. Martial, the youngest, who spoke last, said: All those who do not confess that Jesus Christ is the true God, will be cast into a fire which will never be extinguished.

When the interrogation was finished, the Saints underwent the penalty of the lash and then were taken to prison. Soon they completed their sacrifice in various ways: Januarius was beaten until he died by leather straps capped with lead; Felix and Philip were killed with bludgeons; Sylvanus was thrown headfirst from a cliff; Alexander, Vitalis and Martial were beheaded. Felicity, the mother of these new Maccabees, was the last to suffer martyrdom.

Let Freedom Ring-Day 4 “Freedom from Predation” 

(See Character is Destiny for opposing virtue: SELF CONTROL)

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

Give us the perseverance for this mission, we pray. Amen 

Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception ... pray for us

St. Joseph ... pray for us

St. Michael the Archangel ... pray for us

(the patron of your parish) ... pray for us

(your confirmation saint) ... pray for us 

"Freedom from Predation"

by Fr. Bill Peckman 

The Devil is the ultimate predator. St. Peter warns his readers, "Stay sober and alert. Your opponent the devil is prowling like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." (1 Peter 5:8) The devil is always looking for any opening in which he can pounce and destroy. He uses everything from occult practices to our concupiscence (our predilection to sin) to gain a beachhead. He will also teach us how to follow him as predators ourselves. 

We live in a society that encourages predation. From the mobster who shakes down the local merchant for protection to the sex trafficker and pornographer to the predatory interest charged in so many loans to the endless scams used to bilk people out of money to the common bullying (cyber and otherwise) to those engaged in domestic violence, our society is full of predators looking for their mark, looking for their next meal. Many hide behind the cover of darkness, anonymity, or even behind the law. 

Our Church has been rocked over the past half century by predation. The most obvious examples have stemmed from the scandals in which clerics preyed on their own flocks for sexual gratification, heinously even preying on the lambs of their flock. Others have preyed on their flock through financial malfeasance by defrauding their parishes or dioceses of funds. Many are also complicit in withholding from their flocks the means by which to stave off predation. In abandoning their flocks to the wolves, they are every bit as guilty as the wolves they allowed access to their flocks. 

Certainly, we can extend these behaviors to the most basic building block of the Church known as the domestic church or the family. In these places we can see domestic violence, molestation, and other nefarious abuses of power that have their roots in the diabolic. From all levels of the Church the demonic mimicking of the predatory behaviors of the Devil must be purged. 

All predatory behavior stems from selfishness: its needs or wants are so very important that any and all means to satisfy them must be done. For a predator, its satiation is of far greater value than your happiness, security, or life. While a predator may be infatuated by their prey, they cannot love their prey for they mean to eventually destroy their prey or discard their prey when they have taken all they want.

What force could possibly stand up against such an insatiable beast?! 

We look to Christ the Good Shepherd for our answer! Christ does not prey on His flock. No, He places Himself between His flock and that which would destroy His flock. He stands in that breech, sacrificing Himself for the salvation of the flock. Jesus tells us, "I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down his life for his sheep" (John 10:11). 

Why? 

Because He loves them. You cannot love someone and prey on them at the same time. Hence, the virtue we cultivate to conquer any and all desires to be a predator is the theological virtue of love. Love, divine love (or agape) is completely selfless. Instead of focusing on one's own desires and satiation, one instead looks to the good of others even when in doing so incurs suffering or sacrifice. Love, because it is of God, chases away the devil and his minions. It helps us to, as St. Paul says of himself, to be 'poured out like an oblation' (II Timothy 4:6) 

Prayer of Reparation 

My Lord and my God, we have allowed the temptation of the devil to move our hearts to prey on those we deem weaker or disposable. We have stilled our tongues in the face of such evil. We have been too fearful to stand out in our culture, allowing selfish desires to suffocate your love that is to dwell within us. In our fear, we have allowed the ancient foe to advance. We turn to you Lord, in our sorrow and guilt, and beg your forgiveness for our selfishness and silence. We beg for the grace of your goodness to teach us to shepherd rightly those you place in our care and the courage to stand in the breech between them and the demonic. Help us to love as you love. We know, Lord, if you will it, it will be done. Trusting in you, we offer our prayer to you who live and reign forever.
Amen. 

Prayer of Exorcism 

Lord God of Heaven and Earth, in your power and goodness, you created all things. You set a path for us to walk on and a way to an eternal relationship. By the strength of your arm and Word of your mouth; Cast from your Holy Church every fearful deceit of the Devil; Drive from us manifestations of the demonic that oppress us and beckon us to selfishness and predation. Still the lying tongue of the devil and his forces so that we may act freely and faithfully to Your will. Send your holy angels to cast out all influence that the demonic entities in charge of predation have planted in your church. Free us, our families, our parish, our diocese, and our country from all trickery and deceit perpetrated by the Devil and his hellish legions. Trusting in your goodness Lord, we know if you will it, it will be done in unity with Your Son and the Holy Spirit, One God for ever and ever. Amen.

Litany of Humility

O Jesus, meek and humble of heart,                                Hear me. 

From the desire of being esteemed,               Deliver me, O Jesus. 

From the desire of being loved,                     Deliver me, O Jesus. 

From the desire of being extolled, 

From the desire of being honored, 

From the desire of being praised, 

From the desire of being preferred to others, 

From the desire of being consulted, 

From the desire of being approved, 

From the fear of being humiliated,                 Deliver me, O Jesus.

From the fear of being despised, 

From the fear of suffering rebukes, 

From the fear of being calumniated, 

From the fear of being forgotten, 

From the fear of being ridiculed, 

From the fear of being wronged, 

From the fear of being suspected, 

That others may be loved more than I, 

Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. 

That others may be esteemed more than I, 

Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. 

That, in the opinion of the world, others may increase 

and I may decrease,

Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.

That others may be chosen, and I set aside,

Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.

That others may be praised, and I go unnoticed,

Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.

That others may be preferred to me in everything,

Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.

That others may become holier than I,

provided that I may become as holy as I should,

Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.


Catechism of the Catholic Church


Day 26

185 Whoever says "I believe" says "I pledge myself to what we believe." Communion in faith needs a common language of faith, normative for all and uniting all in the same confession of faith.

186 From the beginning, the apostolic Church expressed and handed on her faith in brief formulae normative for all. But already very early on, the Church also wanted to gather the essential elements of her faith into organic and articulated summaries, intended especially for candidates for Baptism:

This synthesis of faith was not made to accord with human opinions, but rather what was of the greatest importance was gathered from all the Scriptures, to present the one teaching of the faith in its entirety. and just as the mustard seed contains a great number of branches in a tiny grain, so too this summary of faith encompassed in a few words the whole knowledge of the true religion contained in the Old and the New Testaments.

187 Such syntheses are called "professions of faith" since they summarize the faith that Christians profess. They are called "creeds" on account of what is usually their first word in Latin: credo ("I believe"). They are also called "symbols of faith".

188 The Greek word symbolon meant half of a broken object, for example, a seal presented as a token of recognition. The broken parts were placed together to verify the bearer's identity. The symbol of faith, then, is a sign of recognition and communion between believers. Symbolon also means a gathering, collection or summary. A symbol of faith is a summary of the principal truths of the faith and therefore serves as the first and fundamental point of reference for catechesis.

189 The first "profession of faith" is made during Baptism. The symbol of faith is first and foremost the baptismal creed. Since Baptism is given "in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit", The truths of faith professed during Baptism are articulated in terms of their reference to the three persons of the Holy Trinity.

190 and so the Creed is divided into three parts: "the first part speaks of the first divine Person and the wonderful work of creation; the next speaks of the second divine Person and the mystery of his redemption of men; the final part speaks of the third divine Person, the origin and source of our sanctification." These are "the three chapters of our [baptismal] seal".

191 "These three parts are distinct although connected with one another. According to a comparison often used by the Fathers, we call them articles. Indeed, just as in our bodily members there are certain articulations which distinguish and separate them, so too in this profession of faith, the name "articles" has justly and rightly been given to the truths we must believe particularly and distinctly." In accordance with an ancient tradition, already attested to by St. Ambrose, it is also customary to reckon the articles of the Creed as twelve, thus symbolizing the fullness of the apostolic faith by the number of the apostles.

192 Through the centuries many professions or symbols of faith have been articulated in response to the needs of the different eras: the creeds of the different apostolic and ancient Churches, e.g., the Quicumque, also called the Athanasian Creed; The professions of faith of certain Councils, such as Toledo, Lateran, Lyons, Trent; or the symbols of certain popes, e.g., the Fides Damasi or the Credo of the People of God of Paul VI.

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.

·         Devotion to the 7 Joys and Sorrows of St. Joseph

·         Do the St. Joseph Universal Man Plan.

·         Total Consecration to St. Joseph Day 4

Daily Devotions

·         Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Restoring the Constitution

·         Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel-Day 4

·         Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus

·         Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood

·         Universal Man Plan

·         Rosary




[1] Goffine’s Devout Instructions, 1896

[2]https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2023-07-10




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