Lamentations 3:21–23

Mercies are faithful 

                                        

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Son of God movie~Now in theaters!

13 Now when Jesus came into the dis­trict of Cae­sarea Philippi, He asked his dis­ci­ples, “Who do peo­ple say that the Son of Man is?” 14 And they said, “Some say John the Bap­tist, but oth­ers Eli­jah, and still oth­ers Jere­miah or one of the prophets.” 15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Mes­siah,[c] the Son of the liv­ing God.” 17 And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven.~ Matthew 16:13–17

 

The movie “Son of God” came out in the­aters yes­ter­day Feb­ru­ary 28th. We encour­age you to see the movie and tell your friends and fam­ily to join you! Spread the word about this film so that as many peo­ple as pos­si­ble can watch it.

We watched the film today. It was beau­ti­ful, pow­er­ful, inspir­ing, superbly done, and sim­ply breath-taking! This film about Jesus’ life and teach­ings will rekin­dle and build up your faith.

Below is a link to the movie trailer:  Son of God trailer

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Jeremiah 29:11–12

 

11 For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your wel­fare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope. 12 Then when you call upon me and come and pray to me, I will hear you.
                                                                        Jere­miah 29:11–12

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Joshua 1:9

9 I hereby com­mand you: Be strong and coura­geous; do not be fright­ened or dis­mayed, for the Lord your God is with you wher­ever you go.”        

GOD is always with us no mat­ter what we are going through in life.   Tri­als and temp­ta­tions will always come, but GOD has promised to see us through. In the face of adver­sity, put all your trust in GOD, remain calm, JESUS  will NEVER FAIL you.

 

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Psalms 37:23

 steps_good_man1

23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way.  Psalms 37:23

Every year we come up with a New Year’s res­o­lu­tion. At the end of the year, how many of us ever lived up to these res­o­lu­tions. I don’t know about you, but as the year goes by, I totally for­get all about it, only to make the same res­o­lu­tion again the next year. 

As chil­dren of the Almighty GOD, our num­ber one res­o­lu­tion for each New Year should be to get to know GOD more and more by read­ing his word (the Bible), liv­ing the gospel (obey­ing GOD’s word and putting to prac­tice what we read, for exam­ple, lov­ing our neigh­bor as our­selves), and read­ing the Scrip­tures and pray­ing often.

In addi­tion to pray­ing the rosary, we need to read the Bible daily, even a few verses each day.“Igno­rance of the Scrip­tures is igno­rance of Christ” (Cat­e­chism, 133). Read­ing the Holy Bible brings us closer to GOD because we get to know HIM more and to know what pleases him. It guides our path and keeps us in the right course. If we do not read the Scrip­tures, how do we share our faith with others?

This New Year, let Christ be at the cen­ter of our lives. Let Christ be a part of every­thing we do. Seek his face in every deci­sion you make. In time, you will come to real­ize that our LORD is a liv­ing GOD.

Praise GOD always because it pleases HIM. JESUS CHRIST is Lord and GOD at all times, not only when things are going well, but also in bad times. The Bible says we should thank GOD always.

I believe GOD will make this year a won­der­ful one for his chil­dren. So, be cheer­ful and TRUST and have FAITH in the Lord. Approach the New Year with strength and bold­ness, not with fear. When you count your bless­ings, fear and doubts dis­ap­pear. Fear is not a gift from GOD, so always rebuke it in Jesus Name.

Through­out the year, remem­ber always that GOD directs the steps of the right­eous. He knows and sees every­thing, he will not let you cry a need­less tear or aban­don you.

Love, Peace and Joy!

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The Feast of the Epiphany ~ Jan. 5, 2014

 250px-WiseMenAdorationMurillo

Today is the Feast of the Epiphany of Our Lord. The word “epiphany” means man­i­fes­ta­tion. The Epiphany cel­e­brates the man­i­fes­ta­tion of the Sav­ior, Jesus Christ, to the gen­tiles (non-Jewish peo­ple) in the per­sons of the magi—the three wise men Mel­chior, Balthasar, and Gaspar.

After Jesus was born in Beth­le­hem in Judea, dur­ing the time of King Herod, Magi  from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, ‘Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw His star when it rose and have come to wor­ship Him.’ When King Herod heard this he was dis­turbed, and all Jerusalem with him. … After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they were over­joyed. 11 On com­ing to the house, they saw the Child with His mother Mary, and they bowed down and wor­shiped Him. Then they opened their trea­sures and pre­sented Him with gifts of gold, frank­in­cense and myrrh.” (Matthew 2 :1–3,9–11)

God began His work of the redemp­tion of mankind with the Jew­ish peo­ple as seen in the Old Tes­ta­ment. For exam­ple, He gave the Jew­ish peo­ple the Ten Com­mand­ments through the prophet Moses. He also spoke of the Savior’s com­ing through the Old Tes­ta­ment prophets until finally Jesus came into the world. The man­i­fes­ta­tion of Jesus to the three kings sym­bol­izes that Jesus’ com­ing into the world has made rec­on­cil­i­a­tion with God now open to the gen­tiles as well.

All the nations you have made will come and wor­ship before You, Lord;  they will bring glory to Your name. 10 For You are great and do mar­velous deeds; You alone are God.” Psalms 86:9–10

All the ends of the earth will remem­ber and turn to the Lord, and all the fam­i­lies of the nations will bow down before Him … .” Psalms 22:27

The gifts of the three kings: gold, frank­in­cense, and myrrh also have spe­cial sig­nif­i­cance. The gift of gold sig­ni­fies that Jesus is a King. In the Book of Rev­e­la­tion, Jesus is referred to as “the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.” The gift of frank­in­cense sig­ni­fies that Jesus is the High Priest and also God. In the Jew­ish tra­di­tion through­out the Old Tes­ta­ment, the high priest would offer incense to God in wor­ship. For the same rea­son, the priest incenses the altar dur­ing the Holy Mass to honor the pres­ence of God. The last gift, myrrh, seems at first, a strange gift for a new­born baby because myrrh was used as part of Jew­ish embalm­ing and bur­ial cus­toms. This last gift sig­ni­fies that Jesus has come into the world to die as the ulti­mate sac­ri­fice for the sins of mankind in order to rec­on­cile mankind with God.

How does the Epiphany apply to us today?

First of all, we can be thank­ful for our knowl­edge of the One True God, the lov­ing Cre­ator of all mankind who loves us so much that He sent His Son to rec­on­cile us with Him­self. Fur­ther­more, because of this knowl­edge, we must make time and effort to wor­ship God each day by attend­ing the Holy Mass and receiv­ing Holy Com­mu­nion every Sun­day and as much as we can dur­ing the week, mak­ing time to adore Christ like the magi through Ado­ra­tion of the Most Blessed Sacra­ment, as well as daily prayers such as the Most Holy Rosary.

 Sec­ondly, we must resolve to man­i­fest Christ to others—to bring Christ to whomever we encounter by our words and actions.  The light and love of Christ must shine through us, so that all those with whom we come into con­tact may be drawn to Jesus for the sal­va­tion of their eter­nal souls.

 “A new com­mand I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this every­one will know that you are My dis­ci­ples, if you love one another.” John 13:34–35

You are the light of the world. A city on a hill can­not be hid­den. Nei­ther do peo­ple light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to every­one in the house. In the same way, let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14–16

 In Chap­ter 4 of the Gospel of John is the beau­ti­ful account of the Samar­i­tan woman who met Jesus and was so moved by the expe­ri­ence that she told every­one in her town.

Then, leav­ing her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the peo­ple, ‘Come, see a man who told me every­thing I ever did. Could this be the Christ?’ They came out of the town and made their way toward Him. … Many of the Samar­i­tans from that town believed in Him because of the woman’s tes­ti­mony … and because of His words many more became believ­ers.” (John 4: 28, 29, 39–41)

 The vision of Saint John in the Book of Rev­e­la­tion gives us a hope­ful and tri­umphant image of a redeemed mankind.

After this I looked, and there before me was a great mul­ti­tude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, peo­ple and lan­guage, stand­ing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wear­ing white robes and were hold­ing palm branches in their hands.” Rev­e­la­tion 7:9

Like the three kings, may we earnestly seek Christ and His King­dom! Like the Blessed Vir­gin Mary, may we man­i­fest Him to others!

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Happy 2014!

"Behold I make all things new." ~ Revelation 21:5

“Behold I make all things new.” ~ Rev­e­la­tion 21:5

A Blessed, Happy, and Holy New Year to all of you! Let this year be for you an oppor­tu­nity for renewal in Christ!

There­fore, if any­one is in Christ, he is a new cre­ation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” 2 Corinthi­ans 5:17

 How can we be open to the renew­ing power of God? 

Firstly, we must resolve to leave behind sin and amend our lives. Then God will give us the strength and grace to detach from sin and thus improve our lives, grow in holi­ness and char­ity, and be closer to HIM. Though none of us is per­fect, we must resolve and strive not to sin because sin offends God and sep­a­rates us from HIM. In addi­tion, we must resolve not to sin because of our love for God who is our lov­ing and faith­ful Cre­ator, Father, and Friend.

Fur­ther­more, when­ever we real­ize that we have fallen into sin, let us quickly go to Con­fes­sion to obtain par­don for our sins, be rec­on­ciled with God who loves us so much, and obtain graces to detach from sin. It is Jesus Him­self wait­ing for us in the Con­fes­sional, who works through the priest to par­don our sins.

God has given us many means through which HIS abun­dant graces can flow into our souls, renew our souls, and make them holy such as:

  • Fre­quent (every Sun­day or even daily) participation at the Holy Mass and receiv­ing Holy Communion
  • Fre­quent (monthly or even weekly) use of the won­der­ful Sacra­ment of Rec­on­cil­i­a­tion (Confession)
  • Daily prayer (i.e. daily Rosary)
  • Holy read­ing (i.e. the Holy Bible and other Chris­t­ian books)

This year, let us also renew or begin a resolve to serve God in every­thing we do. Every­thing in our life must be ori­ented to the ser­vice of God! We must real­ize that what­ever gifts we have, wher­ever God has placed us, and what­ever influ­ence we have among our fam­ily, friends, and com­mu­nity are the means God has cho­sen to save other souls through us. God has called each of us to be a spe­cial light wher­ever He has placed us. We are lights in the world because we carry within us Jesus, the Light of the World, the Ever­last­ing Light.

Fur­ther­more, we can trust that God is guid­ing our lives so that our souls and those around us may grow ever closer to HIM.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to pros­per you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”   

~ Jere­miah 29:11

16 Thus says the Lord,
    who makes a way in the sea,
    a path in the mighty waters …
18 ‘Remem­ber not the for­mer things,
    nor con­sider the things of old.
19 Behold, I am doing a new thing;
    now it springs forth, do you not per­ceive it?
I will make a way in the wilder­ness
    and rivers in the desert.’ “~ Isa­iah 43:15–16,18–20

Rec­om­mended books for the New Year:

  • Jesus, Our Eucharis­tic Love” by Father Ste­fano Manelli
  • The Imi­ta­tion of Christ” by Thomas à Kempis
  • I Believe in Love: A Per­sonal Retreat Based on the Teach­ing of St. Thérèse of Lisieux” by Father Jean C. J. d’Elbée
  • Story of A Soul: The Auto­bi­og­ra­phy of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux by John Clarke, O.C. D.
  • The BOY who met JESUS: Segatashya of Kibeho by Immac­ulée Ilibagiza
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Christmas Day: The Feast of the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ

The Birth of Jesus Christ

The Birth of Jesus Christ

For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given … And His name will be called
Won­der­ful, Coun­selor, Mighty God,
Ever­last­ing Father, Prince of Peace.” ~Isa­iah 6:9

 10 Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tid­ings of great joy which will be to all peo­ple. 11 For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Sav­ior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swad­dling cloths, lying in a manger.” ~Luke 2:10–12

It is impor­tant at this time to reflect upon God’s great love for us which made Him come down to earth to rec­on­cile mankind with Him­self and show us the way to ever­last­ing life.

16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begot­ten Son, that who­ever believes in Him should not per­ish but have ever­last­ing life.” ~John 3:16

May the cel­e­bra­tion of Christ’s birth today be for you a source of hope, peace, and joy!

Merry Christ­mas! Feliz Navi­dad! Feliz Natal! Joyeux Noel!

                        

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An Advent Prayer

 

Sweet Infant Jesus,

I bring to you this day, and all the days of Advent, my heart, my love, my very life, together with those lit­tle acts of self denial and sac­ri­fice, made in your honor, and of which you alone know.  Let me, I beg of you, heap these gifts around your crib that they may on Christ­mas morn­ing prove my love for you, and may love and ado­ra­tion serve to warm your poor sta­ble and make bright, and happy your birth­day, sweet Jesus!

 

*In these final days before Christ­mas, let us con­tinue to pre­pare our hearts and souls to receive Jesus anew by puri­fy­ing our­selves through fre­quently attend­ing Mass (even daily Mass) and receiv­ing Holy Com­mu­nion, fre­quent use of the Sacra­ments (i.e.  Confession) and prayer.

 

 

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Advent 2013: A Season of Hope!

Advent

Tomor­row will begin the third of the four weeks of the sea­son of Advent, in which we pre­pare our­selves in a spe­cial way for the com­ing of Jesus.  The word Advent means ‘coming.’

Firstly, we pre­pare our­selves to cel­e­brate Christ­mas, the his­tor­i­cal birth of Jesus Christ, His first com­ing into the world. The angel Gabriel told the poor shep­herds who were nearby when Jesus was born, “For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Sav­ior, who is Christ the Lord. “(Luke 2:11) The Mass read­ings dur­ing Advent remind us how the peo­ple of the Old Tes­ta­ment waited in hope­ful expec­ta­tion for the com­ing of the Messiah.

Sec­ondly, in addi­tion to cel­e­brat­ing the his­tor­i­cal event of Jesus’ birth, the most impor­tant event in all human his­tory, we pre­pare our­selves spir­i­tu­ally to receive Him and His grace in a spe­cial way at Christ­mas. This way, our hearts and souls can become spir­i­tual mangers ready to receive the Child Jesus.

Thirdly, we call to mind, with a joy­ful hope, the fact that Jesus will come again-His Sec­ond and Final com­ing. The Mass read­ings dur­ing Advent also remind us of Jesus’ sec­ond com­ing and the need to be pre­pared at all times to receive Him with joy at His Sec­ond Com­ing, when He comes in the clouds of heaven with great power and glory to sep­a­rate the wicked from the good.

Behold I am com­ing soon! My reward is with me and I will give to every­one accord­ing to what he has done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Begin­ning and the End.”(Revelation 22:12–13)

Let the sea resound, and every­thing in it,
    the world, and all who live in it.
8Let the rivers clap their hands,
    let the moun­tains sing together for joy;
let them sing before the Lord,
    for he comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in right­eous­ness
    and the peo­ples with equity.” (Psalm 98:7–9)

How can we pre­pare our­selves dur­ing Advent?

We can pre­pare our­selves this Advent by amend­ing our lives. Let us resolve to make Christ the cen­ter of our lives through prayer (i.e. the Holy Rosary), fre­quent par­tic­i­pa­tion at Holy Mass and Holy Com­mu­nion, and fre­quent use of the Sacra­ments (i.e. Con­fes­sion) in order to purify our­selves so that we may be ready to receive Him at Christ­mas and always.

Have A Blessed and Joy­ous Advent!

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December 12th ~ Feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Our Lady of Guadalupe

The Actual Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe at the Basil­ica in Mex­ico City

On Decem­ber 9th, 10th, and 12th of 1531, the Blessed Vir­gin Mary appeared in Mex­ico as the preg­nant Mother of God to Saint Juan Diego. Saint Juan Diego was an indige­nous man who recently con­verted to Catholi­cism. (The Span­ish had con­quered Mex­ico only a few decades ear­lier. Later mis­sion­ar­ies came to bring Chris­tian­ity to the indige­nous peo­ple of Mexico.)

Our Lady left a Mirac­u­lous Image of her appear­ance on Saint Juan Diego’s cac­tus fiber cloth (tilma), which still exists today and is on dis­play at the Basil­ica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mex­ico City. Our Lady came to offer faith, hope and con­so­la­tion to the indige­nous peo­ple of Mex­ico and to bring peace to the land. Her appear­ance also brought an end to the human sac­ri­fices that were part of the Aztecs’ offer­ings to their false gods. She led them instead to Jesus, her Son, the One True God.

Early in the morn­ing of Decem­ber 9th, 1531, Our Lady appeared to Saint Juan Diego for the first time. Saint Juan Diego was walk­ing to attend the Holy Mass in the morn­ing as usual. (It is said that Saint Juan Diego walked 15 miles every day to attend the Holy Mass!) Our Lady said:

My dear son, whom I love ten­derly, know that I am the Vir­gin Mary, Mother of the True God; the Giver and main­tainer of life; Cre­ator of all things; Lord of Heaven and Earth, Who is in all places. I wish a tem­ple be erected here, where I can man­i­fest the com­pas­sion I have for the natives and for all who solicit my help.”

 She asked him to go to Bishop Juan Zumar­raga and request to have a church built on the bar­ren hill of Tepeyac which is now part of Mex­ico City. Juan Diego went to the Bishop as Our Lady had asked. The Bishop asked Juan Diego to ask Our Lady to give him a sign.

San Juan Diego

On Decem­ber 12th, Our Lady appeared to Saint Juan Diego and told him to pick the Castil­lian roses (found nat­u­rally in Spain) that mirac­u­lously appeared on Tepeyac hill, though Tepeyac hill is a bar­ren area with cac­tus plants and despite the fact that it was win­ter. Saint Juan Diego put the roses in his tilma which Our Lady care­fully arranged in his tilma. She told him to bring them to the Bishop as the sign for him to believe her request. Our Lady told him only to open the tilma full of roses in the pres­ence of the Bishop.

  Saint Juan Diego and Bishop Zumarraga

Zumarraga

Saint Juan Diego went to see the Bishop and then he opened the tilma and the roses fell to the floor. To everyone’s amaze­ment, the Image of Our Lady had appeared on the tilma  by the direct power of God! The Bishop built the church as Our Lady requested and within the next nine years, nine mil­lion native Mex­i­can peo­ple were con­verted and bap­tized to the one true faith and estab­lished an era of peace!

Many sci­en­tists (includ­ing sci­en­tists from NASA) have stud­ied the image and have shown that the mirac­u­lous image is not a paint­ing! There is no pig­ment and there no brush­strokes on the tilma. Also, since the tilma is made of a sim­ple cac­tus fiber cloth, it should have rot­ted after 20 years, but it has been mirac­u­lously pre­served over the past 471 years! The image was also left unscathed by a bomb blast in 1921 when a bomb was placed directly in front of it by anti-Catholic Mex­i­can peo­ple. Fur­ther­more, dig­i­tal enhance­ment of the eyes of Our Lady in the Image shows the reflec­tion of the faces of Bishop Zumar­raga and Saint Juan Diego. Five eye doc­tors who exam­ined Our Lady’s eye said that they looked into a human eye. Dr. Jose Aste Ton­s­mann car­ried out the most famous research stud­ies of Our Lady of Guadalupe’s eyes in the image. Even the con­stel­la­tions on her man­tle have been iden­ti­fied to match the con­stel­la­tions in the sky of Decem­ber 12th 1531!

 All of this con­firms what the faith­ful have always believed—that this truly Mirac­u­lous Image was pro­duced directly by the hand of God!

Our Lady of Guadalupe is also the same woman described in the Book of Rev­e­la­tion. “There was a great sign in the heav­ens, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and upon her head a crown of twelve stars.”(Revelation 12:1–2)

The image is full of sym­bol­ism which com­mu­ni­cated to the native peo­ple of Mex­ico to embrace the Catholic faith, the gospel of Jesus Christ—to turn to the One True God. The mir­a­cles attrib­uted to Our Lady of Guadalupe con­tinue to this day. Her image still con­tin­ues to com­mu­ni­cate to us the need to seek her inter­ces­sion that she might bring us to Her Son Jesus.

Dur­ing one of the appari­tions, when Saint Juan Diego was con­cerned about his dying uncle (who Mary later healed), she said,

… Do not be afraid of any ill­ness or acci­dent or pain. Am I not here who am your Mother? Are you not under my shadow and pro­tec­tion? Do you need any­thing else? ”

 These words still bring com­fort today and help us remem­ber that Mary is always at our side.

Fur­ther­more, how fit­ting that Mary should appear preg­nant with her Son dur­ing the sea­son of Advent of 1531, hop­ing to bring peo­ple to her Son in time for Christ­mas! May Our Lady of Guadalupe bless us dur­ing Advent, Christ­mas, and always!

For more infor­ma­tion about Our Lady of Guadalupe:

Our Lady of Guadalupe (Catholic Online)

Our Lady of Guadalupe (Feast: Decem­ber 12)

Our Lady of Guadalupe (Wikipedia)

Videos

 Appari­tion of Our Lady of Guadalupe(part1)

Appari­tion of Our Lady of Guadalupe(part 2)

Movie

Guadalupe” made in 2006 by Dos Cora­zones Films

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Psalm 54

Psalm 54

1 Save me, O God, by your name,
and vin­di­cate me by your might.
2 Hear my prayer, O God;
give ear to the words of my mouth.

3 For the inso­lent have risen against me,
the ruth­less seek my life;
they do not set God before them. Selah

4 But surely, God is my helper;
the Lord is the upholder of[a] my life.
5 He will repay my ene­mies for their evil.
In your faith­ful­ness, put an end to them.

6 With a freewill offer­ing I will sac­ri­fice to you;
I will give thanks to your name, O Lord, for it is good.
7 For he has deliv­ered me from every trou­ble,
and my eye has looked in tri­umph on my enemies.

We serve an awe­some GOD who cares and loves us dearly, and does not turn his back on his chil­dren in their hour of need.  A GOD that answers prayers. Noth­ing is impos­si­ble with GOD.

I just wanted to share this amaz­ing story of sur­vival and the love of GOD with you. Some of you may have already come across it (gone viral on YouTube), any­way, I just wanted to share. GOD bless, have a won­der­ful and blessed day!

Man Sur­vives Three Days at Bot­tom of Atlantic Ocean After Tug­boat Top­ples: Amaz­ing Res­cue Video

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Isaiah 41:10

10  “do not fear, for I am with you, do not be afraid, for
I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will  uphold you with my vic­to­ri­ous right hand.“
Isa­iah 41:10

No mat­ter what sit­u­a­tion we find our­selves in,  strug­gles, tri­als and Satan’s attacks, we should find strength, com­fort, and  most of all depend on GOD’s promise: “Do not fear, for I am with you.”

Please pray the rosary daily as Our Blessed Mother has requested
(watch 2 videos below):


Prayer: I claim the pro­tec­tion of the blood of the LAMB.

Love, Peace and Joy!

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All Soul’s Day ~November 2

Today is All Soul’s Day, the com­mem­o­ra­tion of all the faith­ful departed, all those who have died in God’s friend­ship. This was insti­tuted in the Bene­dic­tine Monastery of Cluny by Abbot Odilo in the year 998 and then spread to the whole Church.

Those who have died in God’s friend­ship are either now in Heaven or in Purgatory.

Those who have died in the grace of God and have no need of fur­ther purifi­ca­tion are gath­ered around Jesus and Mary, the angels and the saints. They thus form the Church of heaven where they see God ‘face to face’(1 Corinthi­ans 13:12). They live in a com­mu­nion of love with the Most Blessed Trin­ity and they inter­cede for us.” (Cat­e­chism of the Catholic Church)

Pur­ga­tory is the state of those who die in God’s friend­ship, assured of their eter­nal sal­va­tion, but who still have need of purifi­ca­tion to enter into the hap­pi­ness of heaven.” (Cat­e­chism of the Catholic Church) These souls are referred to as the Holy Souls in Purgatory.

We, “the faith­ful who are still pil­grims on earth are able to help the souls in pur­ga­tory by offer­ing prayers in suf­frage for them, espe­cially the Eucharis­tic sac­ri­fice. … by alms­giv­ing, indul­gences, and works of penance.” (Cat­e­chism of the Catholic Church)

*The Eucharis­tic Sac­ri­fice is another name for the Holy Mass (also The Holy Sac­ri­fice of the Mass). We can have Masses offered for them or offer the Masses we attend for them.

*Prayers: We can offer any prayers for their release from Pur­ga­tory, espe­cially the Holy Rosary and St. Gertude’s prayer. Jesus promised St. Gertrude the Great to release 1000 souls in Pur­ga­tory each time this prayer is said:

Eter­nal Father, I offer You the most pre­cious blood of Thy Divine Son, Jesus, in union with the Masses said through­out the world today, for all the Holy Souls in Pur­ga­tory, for sin­ners every­where, for sin­ners in the uni­ver­sal church, for those in my own home and in my fam­ily. Amen.

*Works of Penance: An exam­ple is mak­ing The Way of the Cross (Sta­tions of the Cross) specif­i­cally for the souls for the Holy Souls in Pur­ga­tory. We can even offer our suf­fer­ings for their relief.

*Indul­gences: “Indul­gences are the remis­sion before God of the tem­po­ral pun­ish­ment due to sins whose guilt has already been for­given. The faith­ful Chris­t­ian who is duly dis­posed gains the indul­gences under pre­scribed con­di­tions for either him­self or for the departed.”(Cat­e­chism of the Catholic Church)

**Con­di­tions for gain­ing indul­gences: One can obtain either a ple­nary (full) or par­tial indul­gence by going to Con­fes­sion, recit­ing prayers for the Pope (such as 1 Our Father, 1 Hail Mary and 1 Glory Be), and com­plet­ing a par­tic­u­lar work to which an indul­gence is attached (i.e. Ado­ra­tion before the Most Blessed Sacra­ment for at least 30 min­utes, mak­ing the Way of the Cross, and espe­cially between Nov. 1 — Nov. 8 vis­it­ing a ceme­tery to pray for the Holy Souls in Pur­ga­tory, etc.). An indul­gence is Ple­nary if one has no attach­ment to sin, but oth­er­wise it is Partial.

A verse from the  Old Testament:

It is there­fore a holy and whole­some thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from their sins” (2 Mac­cabees 12:46).

Why Pur­ga­tory?

In God’s infi­nite wis­dom and mercy, He made a place for souls to be puri­fied if they die in His friend­ship, but are not yet pure enough to enter Heaven. We must remem­ber that God is holy.  Only what is holy can enter into God’s Pres­ence. When St. John recounts his vision of the heav­enly city, the new Jerusalem, he said, “But noth­ing unclean shall enter it.” (Rev­e­la­tion 21:27) Also in the New tes­ta­ment,  Jesus Him­self said, “Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.”(Matthew 5:8)

More Resources on Purgatory:

  • Pur­ga­tory Explained: By the lives and leg­ends of the Saints”~Fr. F.X. Schouppe, S.J.

 

 

 

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Solemnity of All Saints (November 1)

 

all-saints-day-011Today, Novem­ber 1st, is the Solem­nity of All Saints, the day that the Church hon­ors all the  saints of the church–those who have been for­mally can­on­ized as well as those known to God alone. (Today is a Holy Day of Obligation.)

The Saints are the men, women, and even chil­dren who have glo­ri­fied God dur­ing their lives on earth and now enjoy His Pres­ence in Heaven.  Dur­ing their earthly lives, some Saints were reli­gious (priests, broth­ers, nuns/sisters) and some were laypeo­ple (sin­gle or married). There are Saints from every race, nation­al­ity, and language.

An excerpt from the first read­ing for the Mass of the Solem­nity of All Saints:

After this I had a vision of a great mul­ti­tude,
which no one could count,
from every nation, race, peo­ple, and tongue.
They stood before the throne and before the Lamb,
wear­ing white robes and hold­ing palm branches in their hands.
They cried out in a loud voice:

Sal­va­tion comes from our God, who is seated on the throne,
and from the Lamb.”

All the angels stood around the throne
and around the elders and the four liv­ing crea­tures.
They pros­trated them­selves before the throne,
wor­shiped God, and exclaimed:

Amen. Bless­ing and glory, wis­dom and thanks­giv­ing,
honor, power, and might
be to our God for­ever and ever. Amen.”

Then one of the elders spoke up and said to me,
“Who are these wear­ing white robes, and where did they come from?”I said to him, “My lord, you are the one who knows.”
He said to me,“These are the ones who have sur­vived the time of great dis­tress; they have washed their robes
and made them white in the Blood of the Lamb.”  ~Rev­e­la­tion 7:9–14

May all the Saints inter­cede for us today so that we too may become holy and one day enjoy God’s Pres­ence in Heaven forever.

 

 

 

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