Saturday, January 6, 2018

Epiphany - (Traditionally on the 6th)

Rise up in splendor, Jerusalem! Your Light has come, the glory of the Lord shines upon you. ~Isaiah 60:1
They were men willing to sacrifice of themselves in
order to find a newborn King.  This is a sign of their wisdom:
their willingness to sacrifice.
Many Christians around the world annually celebrate Epiphany on January 6. It is a public holiday in many countries and marks when the three wise men, or kings, visited infant Jesus. Three Wise men following the star. The three wise men's (or kings) visit to the baby Jesus is remembered on the feast of the Epiphany. (AND WISE MEN *STILL* SEEK HIM!)

The Epiphany is 12 days after Christmas in the Gregorian calendar, it marks not only the end of the Christmas holidays but also the start of the Carnival season, which climaxes with Mardi Gras. In some European countries, such as the Czech Republic and Slovakia, children dress as the three kings and visit houses. In their roles as the kings, or wise men, they sing about the Jesus’ birth and pay homage to the “King of kings”. They are rewarded with praise and cookies. Dia de los Reyes Magos is the Latin American celebration of Epiphany.

In many Latin American countries, it is the three wise men and not Santa Claus who bring gifts for children. Children write letters to the wise men telling them how good they were and what gifts they want. In France Le Jour des Rois (the Day of Kings), sometimes called the FĂȘte des Rois, is celebrated with parties for children and adults. The galette des rois, or “cake of kings”, highlights these celebrations. This cake is round and flat, cut into the pantry, covered with a white napkin and carried into a dining room. Children in Spain fill their shoes with straw or grain for the three kings’ horses to eat and place them on balconies or by the front door on Epiphany Eve. The next day they find cookies, sweets or gifts in their place. The “three kings” make an entry in many cities in Spain on Epiphany Eve, accompanied by military bands and drummers in medieval dress. What's Open or Closed? Epiphany is a public holiday in countries such as Austria, Colombia, Croatia, Cyprus, Poland, Ethiopia (but on different date that varies annually), parts of Germany, Greece, Italy, Slovakia, Spain, and Uruguay. It is not a public holiday in Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States (except the US Virgin Islands where it is a public holiday).


The  Epiphany is commonly known as Three Kings’ Day or the Feast of the Epiphany. It means “manifestation” or “showing forth”. It is also called Theophany (“manifestation of God”), especially by Eastern Christians. Epiphany refers not only to the day itself but to the church season that follows it – a season that has a varied length because it ends when Lent begins, and this depends on the date of Easter. It commemorates the first two occasions on which Jesus’ divinity, according to Christian belief, was manifested: when the three kings (also known as wise men or Magi) visited infant Jesus in Bethlehem, and when John the Baptist baptized him in the River Jordan. The Roman Catholic and Protestant churches emphasize the visit of the Magi when they celebrate the Epiphany. The Eastern Orthodox churches focus on Jesus’ baptism. Epiphany is one of the oldest Christian feasts. It was celebrated since the end of the second century, before the Christmas holiday was established. Like other Christian seasons, the church appropriated Epiphany from an old pagan festival. As early as 1996 BC, the Egyptians celebrated the winter solstice (which then occurred on January 6) with a tribute to Aeon, the Virgin. It is important to note that the holiday was established prior to the Gregorian calendar’s introduction. Symbols Various paintings, artworks and sketches show the three wise men and Jesus.

Some paintings artworks show the three wise men on the way to Bethlehem or adoring baby Jesus. The kings are important because their visit illustrates that Jesus was the king of all kings who came for the Jews and the Gentiles.

 The star that guides the wise men to Christ also symbolizes Epiphany, as well as the three gifts they gave to Jesus: Gold (fit for a king). Frankincense (used to worship at a temple). Myrrh (used for embalming, as well as a salve for irritations such as diaper rash). Many Orthodox churches consider Jesus’ baptism to be the first step towards the crucifixion. The liturgical color for the Epiphany season is white.
Epiphany (also known as Twelfth Night, Theophany, or Three Kings Day) marks the occasion of a time-honored Christian tradition of “chalking the doors.” The formula for the ritual — adapted for 2018 — is simple: take chalk of any color and write the following above the entrance of your home: 20 + C + M + B + 18.
The letters have two meanings. First, they represent the initials of the Magi — Caspar, Malchior, and Balthazar — who came to visit Jesus in His first home. They also abbreviate the Latin phrase, Christus mansionem benedicat: “May Christ bless the house.” The “+” signs represent the cross, and the “20” at the beginning and the “18” at the end mark the year. Taken together, this inscription is performed as a request for Christ to bless those homes so marked and that He stay with those who dwell therein throughout the entire year.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Jan 1st Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God / Happy New Year

 On January 1, the Church commemorates the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God - the greatest title of Mary. This feast in the oldest Marian feast of the church of Rome and it celebrates Mary's vocation to be the mother of Jesus Christ. Through Mary, Jesus Christ entered this world, taking on human flesh and a human soul. Jesus is true God and true man. In His person are united both a divine nature and a human nature. Mary is in every history with Jesus and by her intercession we obtain all necessary graces to our life. Besides, being the Mother of God, Mary assumed the mother of all humanity working and helping all those who seek her. So when we look at the image of the Virgin Mary we felt an encouragement in our heart which fortifies our spirituality and comfort our soul. It is the fragrance of the immense and grandiose love.
"So they hurried away and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the manger. When they saw the child they repeated what they had been told about him, and everyone who heard it was astonished at what the shepherds said to them. As for Mary, she treasured all these things and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds went back glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, just as they had been told. When the eighth day came and the child was to be circumcised, they gave him the name Jesus, the name the angel had given him before his conception."  ~Luke 2,16-21
Meanwhile, January 1 also marks the jubilation of the New Year and every faithful exchanges new years greetings as an expression of hope for a peaceful new year. Along with this, the date has been designated as “World Day of Peace”. As a deep aspiration for peace, this particular day is reserved for intense prayer for peace, education towards peace and those values inextricably linked with it, such as liberty, fraternal solidarity, the dignity of the human person, respect for nature, the right to work, the sacredness of human life, and the denunciation of injustices which trouble the conscience of man and threaten peace. 
Just like the Great Jubilee that Saint Pope John Paul II observed, we have another opportunity not only to celebrate a new year, but an Extraordinary Jubilee Year. John Paul taught that “the Jubilee, ‘a year of the Lord’s favor,’ characterizes all the activity of Jesus; it is not merely the recurrence of an anniversary in time.” Anniversaries are not mere numbers, but a way of making present what we celebrate. This New Year’s Day let us celebrate God’s transformation of history by His coming into the world and then let this celebration continue to mark our observance of ALL JUBILEES in our history ... not only making them PRESENT to us today, but LIVING THEM ALL YEAR THROUGH!! 

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Feast of the Holy Family - 1st Sunday after Christmas

The Feast of the Holy Family is usually celebrated on the Sunday following Christmas, Dec. 31 this year. If there is no Sunday between Christmas and New Year’s Day, it is celebrated Dec. 30. The Holy Family, made up of the Christ Child, the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph, serves as a model for all families.

This feast honors their lives together, beginning in Bethlehem and then moving to Nazareth, Egypt and back to Nazareth. The feast recognizes the humility of Jesus, Mary’s virtue and Joseph’s steadfastness, along with the obedience of all three to God’s plan for them in salvation history.

“Here we can learn to realize who Christ really is. And here we can sense and take account of the conditions and circumstances that surrounded and affected His life on earth …,” reflected Blessed Paul VI while visiting the Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth in 1964, adding that from the Holy Family we learn about silence, family life and discipline. “How I would like to return to my childhood and attend the simple yet profound school that is Nazareth! How wonderful to be close to Mary, learning again the lesson of the true meaning of life, learning again God’s truths.”

The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph is the model for all Christian families. Beginning in the
17th century, devotion to the Holy Family spread throughout the Church. In 1893, Pope Leo XIII approved the feast of the Holy Family; composing part of the Divine Office observing it. Since ancient times, the Coptic Church has celebrated this memorial in light of the flight into Egypt. Succeeding Pontiffs have affirmed the feast as an efficacious means of reminding Christians of the sanctity of the family and it's essential role in disseminating and preserving the Faith.

The example of the Holy Family at Nazareth is a template for the restoration of family life and a safeguard against diabolical, present-day efforts to redefine or end the institutions of marriage and the "Domestic Church" as ordained by God. For Mary and Joseph, having God Incarnate in their midst was an unrivaled joy.

Looking at the Holy Family, we see the love, the protection, and the diligent care that they gave to the Redeemer. We can not fail to feel uneasiness, perhaps a shameful thought, for the times in which we have not rendered the appropriate care and attention to the Blessed Eucharist. We can only ask for forgiveness and do penance for all the sacrilegious acts and lack of respect that are committed against the Blessed Eucharist. We can only ask the Lord, through the intersession of the Holy Family of Nazareth, for a greater love for their Son Incarnate, who has decided to remain here on earth with us every day until the end of time.


Prayer to the Holy Family
Almighty God and Father, Who was pleased to give us the shining example of the Holy Family, graciously grant that we may imitate them in practicing the virtues of family life and in the bonds of charity, and so, in the joy of Your house, delight one day in eternal rewards. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, Who lives and reigns with You and with the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Feast of the Holy Innocents

Holy Innocents' Day is observed on December 28. The Massacre of the Innocents is the biblical narrative of infanticide by Herod the Great, the Roman appointed King of the Jews. The number of infants killed is not stated, however the Holy Innocents have been claimed as the first Christian martyrs. The commemoration of the massacre of these "Holy Innocents" - considered by some Christians as the first martyrs for Christ - first appears as a feast of the western church in the Leonine Sacramentary, dating from about 485.

Today, the date of Holy Innocents' Day, also called The Innocents' Day or Childermas or Children's Mass, varies. The 27th of December is the date for West Syrians and East Syrians. 28th December is the date in the Church of England, the Lutheran Church and the Roman Catholic Church (in which, except on Sunday, violet vestments were worn before 1961, instead of red, the normal liturgical colour for celebrating martyrs). The Eastern Orthodox Church celebrates the feast on 29 December.

Rachel still weeps for all children killed by the evil actions of those participating in governance. There is an ongoing struggle between life and death. Christians are engaged in that conflict every single day. We cannot ever withdraw from the obligations it entails. One of those obligations is the defense of the Right to Life of children in the womb. Those who use Pope Francis in some contrived effort to persuade Catholics to back down from such an unequivocally Pro-Life position are selectively reading this Pope. Francis is simply reminding us that our defense of the child in the womb must also include a defense of all human persons and all of the poor and vulnerable. No-one, to use the words of Francis - can be discarded.

The killing of the Holy Innocents continues in this age through legal abortion and every politician or political leader who
supports it is a Herod.
On December 28th Roman Catholic Christians commemorate the martyrdom of the Holy Innocents, the male Hebrew children slaughtered by an evil ruler named Herod:

"When Herod realized that he had been deceived by the magi, he became furious. He ordered the massacre of all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had ascertained from the magi. Then was fulfilled what had been said through Jeremiah the prophet: A voice was heard in Ramah, sobbing and loud lamentation; Rachel weeping for her children, and she would not be consoled, since they were no more'. (Matt. 2)

Medical science confirms what the Natural Law, our conscience, the Word of God and the unbroken Christian tradition have long confirmed, the child in the womb is one of us. We all know it. We routinely operate on her when she needs our help and place her back in her first home of the womb until birth. We prosecute a criminal who, in committing a crime against his mother, kills him as well.

The abortion lie has been visibly revealed through 3 and 4d ultrasound technology. The beauty of that child now adorns our walls and fills our wallets. Every procured abortion is the intentional killing of such a holy innocent. This act is as immoral as the intentional killing of child outside of the womb. That is because we are always human persons in development. The me at 61 years old is the same me who was alive at 27 years old, only developing in the continuum of the span of days we call our human life.

No politician or public official who supports legal abortion is a real friend of the poor. That is true regardless of their party affiliation and no matter what rhetoric or political sophistry they engage in. As Mother Teresa reminded us, the baby in the womb is the poorest of the poor. The Obama Administration continues the evil of Herod by funding this killing of Holy Innocents.

The killing of the Holy Innocents continues in this age through legal abortion and every politician or political leader who supports it is a Herod.Planned Parenthood receives millions in government grants and contracts. A majority of the members of the Congress of the United States are now complicit in evil by failing to remove funds from the recent budget compromise bill. That money will now go to Planned Parenthood to continue the evil of funding abortions. This is utterly reprehensible.

This nefarious organization has dressed itself up as a Health Care Provider. They include the taking of the life of innocent children under what is euphemistically called reproductive services. There is nothing reproductive about abortion. It is not a service to the child who is being killed, the mother, the father or society. Nor is it health care. It is killing children, plain and simple. Funding it is always morally repugnant. Every member of Congress who supported the current budget bill and failed to act to remove the funding for Planned Parenthood should be ashamed of themselves.

On September 22, 2013, Pope Francis addressed an international gathering of Catholic Gynecologists and told them "Every child that isn't born, but is unjustly condemned to be aborted, has the face of Jesus Christ, has the face of the Lord." Every child killed by legal abortion in this age is a Holy Innocent. Every politician who supports this killing, implicitly or explicitly, carries on the evil of Herod.

Quodvultdeus was a deacon and Church father in the 5th century. He wrote concerning the evil ruler named Herod whose murder of the Hebrew children we recall today in the Roman catholic Liturgical calendar:

"A tiny child is born, who is a great King. Wise men are led to him from afar. They come to adore One who lies in a manger and yet reigns in heaven and on earth. When they tell of One who is born a King, Herod is disturbed. To save his kingdom he resolves to kill Him, though if he would have faith in the Child, he himself would reign in peace in this life and forever in the life to come.

"Why are you afraid, Herod, when you hear of the birth of a king? He does not come to drive you out, but to conquer the devil. But because you do not understand this you are disturbed and in a rage, and to destroy one child whom you seek, you show your cruelty in the death of so many children.

"You are not restrained by the love of weeping mothers or fathers mourning the deaths of their sons, nor by the cries and sobs of the children. You destroy those who are tiny in body because fear is destroying your heart. You imagine that if you accomplish your desire you can prolong your own life, though you are seeking to kill Life himself.

"Yet your throne is threatened by the source of grace, so small, yet so great, who is lying in the manger. He is using you, all unaware of it, to work out his own purposes freeing souls from captivity to the devil. He has taken up the sons of the enemy into the ranks of God's adopted children.

"The children die for Christ, though they do not know it. The parents mourn for the death of martyrs. The child makes of those as yet unable to speak fit witnesses to himself. See the kind of kingdom that is his, coming as he did in order to be this kind of king. See how the deliverer is already working deliverance, the savior already working salvation.

"But you, Herod, do not know this and are disturbed and furious. While you vent your fury against the child, you are already paying him homage, and do not know it. How great a gift of grace is here! To what merits of their own do the children owe this kind of victory? They cannot speak, yet they bear witness to Christ. They cannot use their limbs to engage in battle, yet already they bear off the palm of victory."

For my fellow Catholic Christians, let me state it emphatically, the teaching of our Church is absolutely clear. Every professing Catholic is duty bound to embrace it - and act on it in the exercise of their citizenship. This teaching is summarized in the Catechism of the Catholic Church. It cannot- and it will not - ever change:

"Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception. From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person - among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life. "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you. (Jer 1:5; cf. Job 10:8-12; Ps 22:10-11) "My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth. (Ps 139:15).

"Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law: "You shall not kill the embryo by abortion and shall not cause the newborn to perish." (Didache 2,2:SCh 248,148; cf. Ep. Barnabae 19,5:PG 2 777; Ad Diognetum 5,6:PG 2,1173; Tertullian, Apol. 9:PL 1,319-320.) God, the Lord of life, has entrusted to men the noble mission of safeguarding life, and men must carry it out in a manner worthy of themselves. Life must be protected with the utmost care from the moment of conception: abortion and infanticide are abominable crimes. (GS 51 § 3)"

"Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life. "A person who procures a completed abortion incurs excommunication latae sententiae - by the very commission of the offense," and subject to the conditions provided by Canon Law. The Church does not thereby intend to restrict the scope of mercy. Rather, she makes clear the gravity of the crime committed, the irreparable harm done to the innocent who is put to death, as well as to the parents and the whole of society.


"The inalienable right to life of every innocent human individual is a constitutive element of a civil society and its legislation: "The inalienable rights of the person must be recognized and respected by civil society and the political authority. These human rights depend neither on single individuals nor on parents; nor do they represent a concession made by society and the state; they belong to human nature and are inherent in the person by virtue of the creative act from which the person took his origin. Among such fundamental rights one should mention in this regard every human being's right to life and physical integrity from the moment of conception until death.

"The moment a positive law deprives a category of human beings of the protection which civil legislation ought to accord them, the state is denying the equality of all before the law. When the state does not place its power at the service of the rights of each citizen, and in particular of the more vulnerable, the very foundations of a state based on law are undermined. . . . As a consequence of the respect and protection which must be ensured for the unborn child from the moment of conception, the law must provide appropriate penal sanctions for every deliberate violation of the child's rights." (CCC #2271 - 2273)

Elected leaders and political candidates who oppose the Natural Law Right to Life of the child in the womb - and directly or indirectly promote abortion as a legally protected choice - are the King Herod's of this hour. We cannot - and we must not - support any candidate for public office who will not recognize the inalienable Right to Life of every single human person, including the child in the womb. We must be unequivocal in our defense of every innocent human life from conception to natural death.

Those who use Pope Francis in some contrived effort to persuade Catholics to back down from such an unequivocally Pro-Life position are selectively reading this Pope. Francis is simply reminding us that our defense of the child in the womb must also include a defense of all human persons and all of the poor and vulnerable. No-one, to use the words of Francis, "can be discarded". I end with some more words from the speech he gave to the Catholic gynecologists in 2013:


"A widespread mentality of profits, the "culture of waste," that today enslaves the hearts and minds of so many, comes at a terribly high cost: it requires the elimination of human beings, especially if they are in a weaker physical or societal condition. Our response to this mentality is a "yes" to life, one that is decisive and without hesitation. "The first right of a human person is his own life. He has other goods and some of these are quite precious; but this is the foundational good, the condition for all others" (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Declaration on Procured Abortion, Nov. 18, 1974, no. 11).

"Material things have a price and can be sold, but human persons have a dignity; they are worth more than material things and have no price. So many times, we encounter situations where we see that life is of little account. For this reason the attention to human life in its totality has become in recent times a true and appropriate priority for the Magisterium of the Church, particularly to the most defenseless; that is, to the disabled, to the sick, to the unborn child, to the infant, to the elderly, the most defenseless forms of life.

"In the fragile human being, each of us is invited to recognize the face of the Lord, who in his human flesh has experienced the indifference and the loneliness to which we often condemn the most impoverished, both in the countries of the developing world and in affluent societies. Every child that is not born, but condemned unjustly to being aborted, has the face of Jesus Christ, has the face of the Lord, who even before birth, and then as soon as he is born, experiences the rejection of the world.

"And every elderly person, and-I have spoken about the child; let us turn to the elderly, another point! And every elderly person, even if he is infirm or at the end of his days, carries within himself the face of Christ. They cannot be discarded, as the "culture of waste" proposes to us! They cannot be discarded!"

Rachel Still Weeps: The Killing of the Holy Innocents by Planned Parenthood and Politicians Must End. Pray, live and vote Pro-Life.
Herod sought to safeguard his position and lifestyle by the murder of all male children up to two years old. I can't even wrap my mind around the terror that had to ring out that fateful night with infants and children being ripped from their parents arms and slaughtered violently right in front of them and likely their older siblings! How all of heaven and the angels must have anguished over it. 

Today however, we have many Herods, male and female Herods that seek to maintain their sinful lifestyles uncluttered as they continue on their journey to find "happiness" through sin and debauchery. Think that's strong? Isn't that just what they're doing? Jumping in and out of different beds hoping that one  will be  "just right" and make them happy forever? Is this not what modern times calls "dating"?  

The sexual union was created for procreation. When it's used as RECREATION not REcreation, but RECreation; not only is something lost in the *translation*, but the dignity of the person -IN MORE WAYS THAN ONE- is lost FOREVER. So, if the error of their ways catches them and a woman should find herself WITH CHILD ... not "PREGNANT" but WITH CHILD; it's legal to just KILL THE BABY before it's born. And they can do this right up to the time it's ready TO BE BORN. The heart is beating, the little limbs are moving, it's taking nourishment and stretching. Then one day, IN WHAT SHOULD BE THE SAFEST PLACE IN THE UNIVERSE, a mother's womb, suction tears it apart literally limb from limb or a drill cracks its skull as brains are sucked out. DO THEY THINK THERE IS ANY LESS PAIN FOR THESE LITTLE ONES THAN THE NIGHT OF THE HOLY INNOCENTS with swords piercing them? And we call this *MEDICAL PROCEDURE*abortion; as if pregnancy is a DISEASE that needs to be cured. 

They wonder where the cure for cancer is ... they wonder why we don't have people that will keep our nation strong and our economy stable ... WELL WE LIKELY ABORTED THEM ALL! These are those that will never know a mother's love and tender embrace. Those that CHOSE this path for their CHILDREN will never see the love in their eyes lifted up to them or hear their giggles or see their accomplishments because at the time it didn't fit in with their lives and was INCONVENENT. 

WHAT A HORROR!!!!

May Almighty God have mercy on all who have taken a hand in this horrific atrocity from encouraging words to assisting and performing this murderous act. May all these who had a hand in it be given the GIFT of PERFECT CONTRITION so that they're made aware of just how horrific this vile intrinsic evil is and how conditioned we've become to accept it. It IS the reason why so much has gone wronin the world from the family unit to the economic breakdown. Pray daily for the dignity of the human person to once again be VALUED as it should, as it was meant to ... in ALL STAGES from CONCEPTION TO NATURAL DEATH. 


Matthew 2: 16-18
16Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, was in a furious rage, and he sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under, according to the time which he had ascertained from the wise men.
17Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah:
18"A voice was heard in Ramah, wailing and loud lamentation, Rachel weeping for her children; she refused to be consoled, because they were no more."

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas!


Let us bow down before Him - the CHRIST,
The One Who gave Himself as Ransom for our souls!
The only One that WOULD, the only One that COULD.
Oh come let us adore Him, but not just today, and not just halfheartedly ... but every day and with all our hearts!

Christmas itself bespeaks peace and love. It's a time when we stop, even if just for a brief moment and recognize each other as brothers and sisters of the same family. All one in the Body, for that is what we truly are if we call ourselves Christians. We, for the most part, set aside petty differences and some, by the grace of God, hurts and resentments that have festered for years and even decades. This is the magic of Christmas. The Grace, Love and Peace that He gives freely if we but look in His direction and receive it.
Let everyones prayer be to have this not just today, but always and forever

Please let our prayer for this next year be for those that have lost their way, strayed from the path and not only forgotten the precious Gift of Christmas, but the reason and the Path to Easter Sunday that leads to Eternal Happiness. Pray for those in mortal sin that are in so much darkness, they can't even SEE the light, let alone what surrounds them in this valley of tears. 

Let our daily prayer be:
"Eternal God, thank You for sending Your only begotten Son to the world to offer us a way back to You. That He suffered and died for our sins is too hard for our human intellect to fully understand and we cringe to know our own sins put Him there. But we beg You Father to accept our continuous prayer; united to the Perfect & Holy Passion of Jesus, we offer You our joys, sorrows, breaths, heartbeats and tears to strengthen the faithful, renew the lukewarm, restore the fallen away and convert the proud. Merciful Father, Whose tender Love has no bounds, grant, in Your Goodness and Mercy that we always embrace Your Perfect Will in all things with a joyful heart. Please cover us with the Precious Blood of Jesus in which we trust and rely. Send the Holy Spirit to renew our souls and our land that it may bring You honor and glory and we may, once again, be a nation under God! Bring us daily closer to the Sacred & Immaculate Hearts and increase our Faith that we may always strengthen each other, in Jesus' Name. Amen."

Let this new year renew in our souls the fervent hope that all be saved and none be lost. Let us remember always to pray and do penance for those in our families and all we hold dear that have fallen away to renew and SHARE their Faith with all who cross their path, as we should. Pray especially for those whose hearts are good but necks are stiff; those who do good for others but for whatever reason have turned away from formal practice and are too proud to search for the Truth; for those who feel they have been hurt (real or perceived) by God and have hardened their hearts towards Him ... and for those that satan has convinced that they're 'good enough' to get into heaven as they are, putting worldly things first rather than eternal things. 

Above all else: PRAY, PRAY, PRAY!!!

Ephesians 6:12: "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood; but against principalities, powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."


"The date is December twenty-fifth, but to the humble man, it is Christmas; the manger is a throne; the straw is royal plumage; the stable is a castle; and the Babe is God. He found Power because He was weakness, and the Infinite, Immense and Eternal God, because He was little ~ for it is only by being little that we ever discover anything big. He lies upon straw on earth and yet sustains the universe and reigns in Heaven; He is born in time, and yet He existed before all time; Maker of the stars under the stars; Ruler of the earth an Outcast of earth; filling the world, lying in a manger. And yet the proud man sees only a Babe. The humble, simple souls, who are little enough to see the bigness of God in the littleness of a Babe, are therefore the only ones who will ever understand the reason of His visitation. He came to the poor earth of ours to carry on an exchange; to say to us, as only the Good God could say: You give Me your humanity, and I will give you My Divinity; you give Me your time, and I will give you My eternity, you give Me your weary body, and I will give you Redemption; you give Me your broken heart, and I will give you Love; you give Me your nothingness, and I will give you My All. Thus the birthday of the God-Man is the children's day, in which age, like a crab, turns backwards, in which the wrinkles are smoothed by the touch of a recreating hand, in which the proud become children, and the big become little, and all find God."  ~~(The Eternal Galilean)

Monday, December 18, 2017

Feast of the Expectation of the Blessed Virgin Mary ~ December 18

Come, Let us Adore the Lord, with ... Our Lady of Expectation ......

“As for Mary, she treasured all these things and pondered them in her heart.” (Luke 2:19).

From the very beginning of Christianity, the believers in Christ cherished a special love for Mary, His Mother. Instinctively they sensed that she must be the purest of virgins and the most honored of all women, to whom they could confide all their trials. Reading the Holy Gospels and then following the teaching of the early Fathers of Church, they learned more of her unique role in the life of Jesus and of her power of intercession. Beneath the Basilica of St. Peter in Rome, we see the inscriptions and graffiti that depict Mary as the one who intercedes for the departed Christians to her Son, the Judge. In the Roman Catacombs, we find the wall drawings that represent Mary as the throne of wisdom “Sedes Sapientiae” holding the baby Jesus, the Incarnated Wisdom on her knees whom she presents to the poor shepherds of Bethlehem and to the Wise Men from the Orient.

As the Christian message began to reach different parts of the world, across the Mediterranean Sea, the knowledge of Mary increased considerably in the minds of the believers and the love for her grew ever deeper in their hearts. To express their sentiments of veneration, a litany of invocations was collected and new titles multiplied in number and affection. The popular devotion began to spring up in various regions and countries that enriched greatly the Marian piety. Many lovely hymns and prayers, mostly in Latin, were composed, just to mention the Angelic salutation “Ave Maria...” (Hail Mary), “Salve Regina” (Hail, Holy Queen) and the most ancient of them “Sub Tuum Praesidlum” (Under your protection) and they are still much loved to this day. Hundreds of new titles were given to Our Blessed Lady by her devotees and many of them were approved by the Church and included in the sacred liturgy. Some of them are celebrated in a particular region, country or continent.

As we celebrate Christmas again, the mystery of the Incarnation, we are to

contemplate the greatest gift of God for His people, the gift of His Son, born of the Virgin Mary, promised from the dawn of time, the woman’s “offspring, Who shall crush the serpent’s head” (Gn 3:15) one day; proclaimed by the prophets: “The Virgin is with the child and shall bear a Son, and she will call Him Emmanuel” (Is 7:14) and fulfilled in time “The Word of God became flesh, and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth” (J 1:14) and this “while they were there the time came for her to have a child, and she gave birth to a son, her firstborn. She wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger because there was no room for them at the inn.” (Lk 2:67).

One of the most inspiring days preceding Christmas is the feast of “Our Lady of Expectation,” unknown to many today, but still kept alive in many countries like Spain, Portugal, Italy and Poland as well as in a few religious orders. In older editions of missals, this feast is still listed as a votive Mass. The feast is celebrated on the 18th of December, a week before Christmas Day. Our Blessed Lady, well advanced in pregnancy, is portrayed in the highest dignity of her Divine Motherhood. Dressed in royal apparel as daughter of David the King, she awaits with joy the arrival of her divine Son, the Prince of Peace. Her whole posture suggests how she remains wholly consumed in contemplation of her Son under her heart. Her immaculate womb has become a living portable sanctuary of divinity. There are special prayers and novenas to “Our Lady of Expectation” available for women who cannot conceive or bear a child. 


The votive Mass of “Our Lady of Expectation” is theologically enlightening and spiritually enriching for the time of Advent and Christmas. With the entrance antiphon, the Church prays with the prophet for the coming of the Just One from heaven that the earth may be ready to welcome the Savior: “Send victory like a dew, you heavens, and let the clouds rain down the just. Let the earth open for salvation to spring up” (Is 45:8). In the opening prayer, the Church offers the prayer to God through Mary’s intercession: “O God who wished that your Word would take the flesh from the womb of the Virgin as announced by the Angel and whom we confess to be the true Mother of God, may we be helped by her intercession.”

In the Liturgy of the Word, in the first reading, we hear about the “sign” God will give to the chosen people of Israel and to all people about his plan for the Incarnation of his Son. This “sign” is the Holy Virgin Mary herself, who will give birth to the Son, who will be named the “Emmanuel” (God is with us). This “sign” will appear again at the end of time: “Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman adorned with the sun, standing on the moon, and twelve stars on her head for a crown. She was pregnant, and in labor, crying aloud in the pangs of childbirth” (Rv 12:12). Through the miracle of the Incarnation, God’s only begotten Son became a son of our humanity as St. John noted: “Something which has existed since the beginning, that we have heard, and we have seen with our own eyes; that we have watched and touched with our hands: the Word who is life—this is our subject. That life was made visible: we saw it and we are giving our testimony, telling you of the eternal life which was with the Father and has been made visible to us.” (1 J 13).

In the responsorial psalm, King David makes the way for the solemn entry of God, the Great King, into the sanctuary of the Temple: “Gates, raise your arches, rise, you ancient doors, let the king of glory in! Who is this king of glory? He is Yahweh Sabbaoth, King of glory” (Ps 24:910). Now, this new sanctuary the heavenly King of glory will enter into is the purest womb of the Virgin Mary, a bridal chamber of adoration.

The Gospel message on this feast relates the story of the Annunciation.

God asks a woman, his creature for a favor to be Mother of his Son, and at the same time, he respects her freedom. She is free to say “yes” or “no.” There is a moment of waiting in heaven and on earth: God waits for her answer, the heavenly messenger waits for her answer, the first parents Adam and Eve wait for her answer, all confined in hell wait for her answer. With grateful heart, we thank Mary, the Wise and Prudent Virgin, for saying “yes” to God on our behalf. Her simple words: “Let what you have said be done to me” (Lk 1:38) brought down to us the Savior and has changed the world forever. She obeyed the Angel not the Devil and thus she pleased God: “Blessed are you because of your belief that the promise made to you by the Lord would be fulfilled” (Lk 1:45).

At the offertory, the Church blesses “Our Lad of Expectation” with the Angel’s greeting “Rejoice, so highly favored. The Lord is with you” (Lk 1:29); “Of all women you are the most blessed, and blessed is the fruit of your womb” (Lk 1:42). Mary is doubly blessed: in her virginity and motherhood and thus stands as an ideal and inspiration for every woman single or married. Her virginal womb is blessed with the Divine Life. She is the Mother of every child ever conceived under the mother’s heart. What an example she offers to all expectant mothers to welcome, to nurture life and to bring it to the full maturity of Christ’s humanity. At the same time, we must pray for the end of abortion, the greatest evil in our days and to promote the civilization of love and family life. The Holy Virgin Mary, “Our Lady of Expectation”, is a great educator of the Christian family. Christmas is a family celebration. We all want to be home for Christmas. She teaches us how to love and enjoy our own humanity and the humanity of her Son, we celebrate on Christmas Day. Maranatha! Come, Lord Jesus!

by Fr. Marian Zalecki, OSPPE
The National Shrine of Our Lady of Czestochowa

Prayer to Our Lady of Expectation

The Feast of the Expectation of the Blessed Virgin Mary is celebrated on December 18th. A shrine dedicated to Our Lady of Expectation resides on St. Thomas Mount (the place where St. Thomas the Apostle was martyred) in Chennai, India.

Heavenly Mother, dwelling on the blood-drenched Mount of St. Thomas! Mother expecting; and Mother bearing Christ in your holy womb! Shower thy blessings on us who venerate thee. Protect us from the treacherous Satan. Shelter us in the tabernacle of thy womb.
O Holy womb that bore our Lord Jesus Christ! Mold us as expected by your beloved Son. Let our families inculcate good virtues. Let thy peace fill our families. Let faithfulness be strengthened among couples. Let the voice of vocation be heard and answered. Let wisdom, understanding and knowledge be implanted in our children.
Bless us with employment and industrial development. Bless us with good rain, agricultural growth and decent shelter. Bless us with the gift of children. Bless pregnant mothers with safe delivery. Bless our journeys with safety and bless us with a burden-less life.
Bless all those who have lost their spouse. Bless the orphans and the destitute, physically challenged and the socially afflicted; the poor and helpless.
Let the priests and the religious lead a holy life. Let there be peace in the world. Let love for mankind, solidarity among religions and justice be established. Make us depend on Jesus Christ in our day to day life as you expect and may we say ‘Yes’ to God’s Holy Will. Lord! Like the holy seeping blood which gushed out from the cross carved by St. Thomas, Bless and make this Holy Mount the Faith Home of the World. Amen.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Father Bozada: Make Your Heart A Living Stable For The Infant Christ

Gaudete Sunday reminds us that we are to “rejoice” because the Lord’s coming is at hand. In a very short while, we will behold Our Savior in the manger. Jesus comes to save us from our sins. As a child wrapped in swaddling clothes, Jesus reaches out to all of us. Who could reject a little infant, warm and inviting? This warm welcome from Our Savior is extended to all mankind. This Christmas, take time to come before the Christ Child. Even better yet, pray the novena to the Infant in the Manger as a preparation for Christmas. In this beautiful novena, ask Jesus to reign in your home and heart. What better way to begin the New Year, than to have the Child Jesus living in the stable of your heart. Like the Holy Shepherds, be pure and simple. Your Christmas can then be one to remember for years to come.

Entrusting you to the care of Our Lady,
Fr. Mark
May we always welcome the Child Jesus into the manger of our heart and soul. Come Lord Jesus, Come!