"Come Holy Ghost fill the hearts of thy Faithful and enkindle within them the fire of Thy love!"
On Sunday we will be making our Pentecost Cupcakes which have yellow (or orange, or red) frosting on them, with mini marshmallows cut in half and dipped in red, yellow and orange colored sugars to look like tongues of fire. And then we use the Holy Ghost cupcake toppers
, tape them to a tooth pick and stick in the middle of our cupcakes. The boys have been counting down the days until they can have their cupcakes! For dinner we will be having fajitas... cooked over fire, the chicken as a reminder of the symbol of the Holy Ghost (dove), and red/yellow and orange peppers as the tongues of fire. Joining our main dish will be the 12 Fruits of the Holy Ghost Fruit Salad. Our twelve fruits include: watermelon, grapes, kiwi, pineapple, honeydew, orange, apple, pears, papaya, mango, cantaloupe and strawberries. To top it off we will make a Sweet Sunrise (non-alchocolic Sunrise)
with orange juice and grenadine.
For breakfast we will have our Sunday usual with a twist... Sour Dough Cream Cheese braid, bacon, eggs, a preview of our 12 Fruits of the Holy Ghost Fruit Salad and a tongue of fire smoothie! The smoothie is made by blending banana, mango and strawberries separately and then layering them.
And now for the writings of the wonderful Dom Gueragner from the Liturgical Year set, volume 9, Paschal Time book III. Imprimatur 1927
The great day, which consummates the work that God had undertaken for the human race, has at last shone upon the world. The days of Pentecost, as St. Luke says, are accomplished. (Acts, ii. 1) We have had seven weeks since the Pasch; and now comes the day that opens the mysterious number of fifty. This day is the Sunday, already made holy by the creation of the light, and by the Resurrection of Jesus: it is about to receive its final consecration, and bring us the fullness of God. (Eph. iii. 19. - See the Chapter on the Mystery of Easter', pages 19 and 20).
In the old and figurative Law, God foreshadowed the glory that was to belong, at a future period, to the fifieth day. Israel had passed the waters of the Red Sea, thanks to the protecting power of his Paschal Lamb! Seven weeks were spent in the desert, which was to lead to the promised land; and the very morrow of those seven weeks was the day whereon was made the alliance between God and His people. The pentecost (the fiftieth day) was honored by the promulgation of the ten commandments of the divine law; and ever following year, the Israelites celebrated the great even by a solemn festival. But their Pentecost was figurative, like their Pasch: there was to be a second Pentecost for all people, as there was to be a second Pasch, for the Redemption of the whole world. The Pasch, with all its triumphant joys, belongs to the Son of God, the Conqueror of death: Pentecost belongs to the Holy Ghost, for it is the day whereon He began His mission into this world, which, henceforward, was to be under His Law.
But how different are the two Pentecosts! The one, on the rugged rocks of Arabia, amidst thunder and lightning, promulgates a Law that is written on tablets of stone; the second is in Jerusalem, on which God's anger has not as yet been manifested, because it still contains within its walls the first fruits of that new people, over whom the Sprit of love is to reign. In this second Pentecost, the heavens are not overcast, nor is the roar of thunder heard; the hearts of men are not stricken with fear, as when God spake on Sinai; repentance and gratitude are the sentiments now uppermost. A divine fire burns within their souls, and will spread throughout the whole world. Our Lord Jesus had said: "I am come to cast fire on the earth; and what will I, but that it be kindled?" (St. Luke, xii. 49) The hour for the fulfillment of this word has come: the Spirit of love, the Holy Ghost, the eternal uncreated Flame, is about to descend from heaven, and realize the merciful design of our Redeemer.
Jerusalem is filled with pilgrims, who have flocked thither from every country of the Gentile world. They feel a strange mysterious expectation working in their souls. They are Jews, and have come from every foreign land where Israel has founded a synagogue; they have come to keep the feasts of Pasch and Pentecost. Asia, Africa, and Rome have their representatives.
amidst these Jews properly so called, are to be seen many Gentiles, who, from a desire to serve God more faithfully , have embraced the Mosaic law and observances; they are come to Jerusalem out of a desire to observe the Law, gives the city a Babel-like appearance, for each nation has its own language. They are not, however, under the influence of pride and prejudice, as are the inhabitants of Judea; neither have theym like these latter, known and rejected the Messias, nor blasphemed His works whereby He gave testimony of His divine character. It may be that they took part with the other Jews in clamoring for Jesus' death' but they were led to it by the chief priests and magistrates of the Jerusalem which they reverenced as the holy city of God, and to which nothing but religious motives have brought them.
It is the hour of Tierce, the third hour of the day, (Our nine o'clock. Acts, ii. 15.) fixed from all eternity for the accomplishment of a divine decree. It was at the hour of midnight that the Father sent into this world, that He might take flesh in Mary's womb, the Son eternally begotten of Himself: so now, at this hour of Tierce, the Father and the Son send upon the earth the holy Spirit who proceeds from Them both. He is sent to form the Church, the bride of the kingdom of Christ: He is to assist and maintain her; He is to save and sanctify to the end of time.
Suddenly is heard, coming from heaven, the sound of a violent wind; it startles the people in the city, it soon fills the cenacle with its might breath. A crowd is soon round the house that stands on Mount Sion; the hundred and twenty disciples hat are within the building feel that mysterious emotion within them, of which their Master once said: 'The Spirit breatheth where He will, and thou hearest His voice'. (St. John, iii. 8.) Like that strange invisible creature, which probes the very depth of the sea and makes the waves heave mountains high this Breath from heaven will traverse the world from end to end, breaking down every barrier that would stay its course.
The holy assembly have been days in fervent expectation; the divine Spirit gives them this warning of His coming, and they in the passiveness of ecstatic longing, away His will. As to those who are outside the cenacle, and who have responded to the appeal thus given, let us, for the moment, forget them. A silent shower falls in the house; it isa shower of fire, which, as holy Church says 'burns not but enlightens, consumes not but shines.' (Responsory for the Thursday within the Octave.) Flakes of fire, in the shape of tongues, rest on the heads of the hundred and twenty disciples; it is the Holy Ghost taking possession of all and each. The Church is now not only in Mary, but also in these hundred and twenty disciples. All belong now to the Spirit that has descended upon them; His kingdom is begun, it is manifested, its conquests will be speedy and glorious.
But let us consider the symbol chosen to designate this divine change. He who shoed Himself under that of fire. He is the Spirit of love; and love is not only gentle and tender, it is also ardent as fire. Now, therefore, that the world is under the influence of the Holy Ghost, it must needs be on fire, and the fire shall not be checked. And why this form of tongues? To show that the heavenly fire is to be spread by the word, by speech. These hundred and twenty disciples need but to speak of the Son of God, who renews our souls; of the heavenly Father, who loves and adopts us as His children: their word will receive it shall all be united in one faith; they shall be called the Catholic Church, that is, universal, existing in all places and times. Josus had said: 'God, teach all nations!' (St. Matth. xxviii. 19.) The Holy Ghost brings from heaven both the tongue that is to teach, and the fire (the love of God and of mankind), which is to give warmth and efficacy to the teaching. The tongue and the fire are now given to these first disciples, who, by the assistance of the holy Spirit, will transmit them to others. So will it be to the end of time.
Latin the Language of the Church.......
An obstacle, however, opposes the mission at the very outset. Since the confusion at Babel, there have been as many languages as countries; communication by word has been interrupted. How, then, is the word to become the instrument of the world's conquest, and to make one family out of all these nations that cannot understand each other? Fear not: the holy Spirit is all-powerful, and has provided for this difficulty. With the other gifts, wherewith He has enriched the hundred and twenty disciples, He has given them that of understanding all languages, and of making themselves understood in every language, In a transport of holy enthusiasm, they attempt to speak the languages of all nations; their tongue and their ear take in, not only without effort, but even with charm and joy, this plenitude of word and speech which is to reunite mankind together, The Spirit of love has annulled the separation of Babel' men are once more made brethren by the unity of language.
How beautiful art thou, dear Church of our God! Heretofore, the workings of the Holy Ghost have been limited; but now, He breatheth freely where He willeth; He brings thee forth to the eyes of men by this stupendous prodigy. Thou art the image of what this earth was, when all its inhabitants spoke the same language. The prodigy is not to cease with the day of Pentecost, nor with the disciples who are its first receivers. When the apostles have terminated their lives and preaching, the gift of tongues, at least in its miraculous form, will cease, because no longer needed: but thou O Church of Christ! wilt continue to speak all languages, even to the end of time, for thou art to dwell in every clime. The one same faith is to be expressed in the language of every country; and thus transformed, the miracle of Pentecost is to be kept up for ever within thee, as one of thy characteristic marks.
The great St. Augustine alluded to this, when he spoke the following admirable words: 'The whole body of Christ, the Church, now speaks in all tongues. Nay, I myself speak all tongues, for I am in the body of Christ, I am in the Church of Christ. If the body of Christ now speaks all languages, then am I in all languages. Greek is mine, Syriac is mine, Hebrew is mine, and lal are mine, for I am one with the several nations that speak them.' (Enarratio in Psalmum cxlvii., verse 14) During the ages of faith, the Church (which is the only source of all true progress), succeeded in giving one common language to all the nations that were in union with her. For centuries, the Latin language was the bond of union between civilized countries. However distant these might be from one another, was the medium of communication for political negotiations, for the spread of science, or for friendly epistolary correspondence/ No one was a stranger in any part of the west, or even beyond it, who could speak this language. The great heresy of the sixteenth century robbed us of this as of so many other blessings; it dismembered that Europe which the Church had united, not only by her faith, but by her language. But let us return to the wondrous workings of the holy Spirit within this still closed sanctuary.
First of all, we look for Mary; for her who now, sureless gifts lavished upon her in her Immaculate Conception' after the treasures of holiness infused into her by the Incarnate Word during the nine months she bore Him in her womb; after the special graces granted her for acting and suffering in union with her Son, in the work of the world's Redemption; after the favours wherewith this same Jesus loaded her when in the glory of His Resurrection: we should have thought that heaven had given all it could to a mere creature, however sublime the destiny that creature might be. But no., Here is a new mission opened for Mary. The Church is born; she is born of Mary. Mary has given birth to the bride of her Son; new duties fall upon the Mother of the Church. Jesus has ascended into heaven, leaving Mary upon the earth, that she may nurse the infant Church. Oh! how lovely and yet how dignified, is this infancy in our dear Church, cherished as she is, fed, and strengthened by Mary! But this second Eve, this true Mother of the living (Gen. iii. 20) must receive a fresh infusion of grace to fit her for this her new office: therefore it is that she has the first claim to, and the richest portion of, the gifts of the Holy Ghost. Heretofore, He overshadowed her and made her Mother of the Son of God; now He makes her the Mother of the Christian people. It is the verification of those words of the royal prophet: 'The stream (literally, the impetuosity) of the river maketh the city of God joyful: the Most High hath sanctified His own tabernacle.' (Ps. svl. 5.) The Spirit of love here fulfills the intention expressed by our Redeemer when dying on the cross. 'Woman!' said Jesus to her, 'behold thy son!' St. John was this son, and he represented all mankind. The Holy Ghost now infuses into Mary the plentitude of the grace needful for her maternal mission. From this day forward, she acts as Mother of the infant Church; and when, at length, the Church no longer needs her visible presence, this Mother quits the earth for heaven, where she is crowned Queen; but there, too, she exercises her glorious title and office of Mother of men.TO CONTINUE READING THESE WONDERFUL WRITINGS ON PENTECOST VISIT ALL THE SAINTS BOOKS FOR A COPY OF THIS TEXT
*** We are bumping this post up as the wrong links were placed for getting to the Catholic Life book, they have now been corrected and are working. We apologize for any inconvenience.
For those of you who follow our blog as well as those who purchased the Holy Simplicity Planner
last year, you are quite familiar with this little gem. Its a favorite title of ours along with Dom Gueragner's Liturgical Year
! We are so excited to announce that Catholic Life or The Feasts, Fasts, and Devotions of the Ecclesiastical Year
is now back in print! This paperback version allows for affordability and use. Its the perfect companion with the Holy Simplicity Planner
which is why it was included IN last years version. We made the decision to remove the title and have it reprinted on its own so that it would not have to be purchased in a consumable form every year. Now this title may be used and loved year after year!
As it is an exact reprint of the 1908 version it also contains many black and white pictures for the various feast days as well as a few articles that were not in last years Holy Simplicity Planner
as there was not enough space to include them all. But they are all here now in this nice compact handy book!
To preview some of the articles please visit our various Liturgical Year pages, a few of them can be found by visiting these specific pages: Catholic Life Introduction, Advent, Christmas, Lent
. If you and your family follow the Liturgical Year this is the best little book to have as a guide! It covers all the major feasts, fasts and devotions within the Catholic Church and is a wonderful guide to keeping those Catholic traditions in the home. It is the perfect companion with the Holy Simplicity Planner
as well as Dom Gueranger's Liturgical Year
. We hope that you will enjoy this title as much as we do! Visit All the Saint's Books for more details on Catholic Life.
Ps.... There are new previews of the children's planners up at All The Saint's Books
Tuesday is the Feast of the Great Martyr St. George! We thought we would share with you today the wonderful writings of Dom Gueranger
, he writes like no other! Also if you hop on over to Crusaders-for-Christ they have a wonderful children's story and also two St. George Coloring Pages free for download
! St. George ora pro nobis!The Liturgical Year - Pascal Time Book II, Vol. 8
By: Abbot Dom Guranger, O.S.B. + Imprimatur 1927
SAINT GEORGE, MARTYR APRIL 23
Clad in his bright coat of mail, mounted, on his war-steed, and spearing the dragon with his lance, George, the intrepid champion of our Risen Jesus, comes to gladden us to-day with his feast. From the East, where he is known as the great Martyr
, devotion to St. George soon spread in the Western Church, and our Christian armies have always loved and honoured him as one of their dearest patrons. His martyrdom took place in Paschal Time; and thus he stands before us as the guardian of the glorious sepulcher, just as Stephen, the Protomartyr, watches near the crib of the Infant God.
The Roman Liturgy gives no lessons on the life of St. George; but, in their stead, reads to us a passage from St. Cyprian on the sufferings of the martyrs. This derogation from the general rule dates from the fifth century. At a celebrated Council held in Rome in the year 496, Pope St. Gelasius drew up, for the guidance of the faithful, a list of books which might or might not be read without danger. Among the number of those that were to be avoided, he mentioned the 'Acts of St. George,' as having been compiled by one who, besides being an ignorant man, was also a heretic. In the East, however, there were other 'Acts' of the holy martyr, totally different from those current in Rome: but they were not known in that city. The cultus
of St. George lost nothing, in the holy city, by this absence of a true legend. From a very early period, a church was built in his honor; it was one of those that were selected as Stations, and gave a Title to a Cardinal; it exists to this day, and it is called Saint George in Velabro
(the Veil of Gold).
The Bollandists were in possession of several copies of the forbidden 'Acts'; they found them replete with absurd stories, and, of course, they rejected them. Father Papebroch has given us other and genuine 'Acts' written in Greek, and quoted by St. Andrew of Crete. They bring out the admirable character of our martyr, who held an important post in the Roman army during the reign of the Emperor Diocletian. He was one of the first victims of the great persecution and suffered death at Nicomedia. Alexandra, the Emperor's wife, was so impressed at witnessing the Saint's courage, that she professed herself a Christian, and shared the crown of martyrdom with the brave soldier of Christ.
As we have already said, devotion to St. George dates from a very early period. St. Gregory of Tours gives us several proofs of its having taken root in Gaul. St. Clotilde had a singular confidence in the holy martyr, and dedicated to him the Church of her dear Abbey of Chelles. But this devotion became more general and more fervent during the Crusades, when the Christian armies witnessed the veneration in which St. George was held by the Eastern Church, and heard the wonderful things that were told of his protection on the field of battle. The Byzantine historians have recorded several remarkable instances of the kind; and the Crusaders returned to their respective countries publishing their own experience of the victories gained through the Saint's intercession. The Republic of Genoa chose him for its patron; and Venice honoured him as its special protector, after St. Mark. But nowhere was St. George so enthusiastically loved as in England. Not only was it decreed in a Council held at Oxford, in the year 1222, that the feast of the Great Martyr should be observed as one of obligation; not only was devotion to the valiant soldier of Christ encouraged, throughout Great Britain, by the first Norman Kings; but there are documents anterior to the invasion of William the Conqueror, which prove that St. George was invoked as the special patron of England even so far back as the ninth century. Edward III did but express the sentiment of the country when he put the Order of the Garter, which he instituted in 1330, under the patronage of the warrior Saint. In Germany, King Frederic III founded the Order of St. George in the year 1468.
St. George is usually represented as killing a dragon; and where the representation is complete, there is also given the figure of a princess, whom the Saint thus saves from being devoured by the monster. This favourite subject of both sacred and profane art is purely symbolical, and is of Byzantine origin. It signifies the victory won over the devil, by the martyr's courages profession of faith; the princess represents Alexandra, who was converted by witnessing the Saint's heroic patience under his sufferings. Neither the 'Acts' of St. George nor the hymns of the Greek Liturgy allude to the martyr's having slain a dragon and rescued a princess. It was not till after the fourteenth century that this fable was known in the west; and it arose from a material interpretation of the emblems with which the Greeks honoured St. George, and which were introduced among us by the crusaders.
Although, as has been said, the Office of St. George is the Roman Breviary has been taken from the Common of Martyrs in Paschal Time, the following historical lesson has recently been approved for the Dioceses of England:George, who among the martyrs of the East has received the name of Great Martyr, suffered a glorious death for the sake of Christ in the persecution of Diocletian. When shortly afterwards peace was given to the Church under Constantine, the memoir of St. George began to be celebrated. Churches were erected to his honour in Palestine and at Constantinople, and devotion to him spread through the East and into the West. From early times Christian armies have invoked the protection of St. George, together with SS Maurice and SEbastian, when going into battle. Special devotion was shown to St. George in England for many centuries, and Pope Benedict XIV declared him the special protector of that kingdom.(Editors note: See the text of Dom Gueranger's Liturgical Year for a Hymn of St. George)
Thou, O George, art the glorious type of a Christian soldier. Whilst serving under an earthly monarch, thou didst not forget thy duty to the King of heaven. Thou didst shed thy blood for the faith of Christ; and he, in return, appointed thee protector of Christian armies. Be their defender in battle, and bless with victory them that fight in a just cause. Protect them under the shadow of thy standard; cover them with they shield; make them the terror of their enemies. Our Lord is the God of Hosts; and he frequently uses war as the instrument of his designs, both of justice and mercy. They alone win true victory who have heaven on their side; and such soldiers, when on the battle-field, seem to the world to be doing the work of man, whereas it is the work of God they are furthering. Hence are they more generous, because more religious, than other men. The sacrifices they have to make, and the dangers they have to face, teach them unselfishness. What wonder, then, that soldiers have given so many martyrs to the Church!
But there is another warfare, in which we Christians are all enlisted, and of which St, Paul speaks, when he says: Labour as a good soldier of Christ: for no man is crowned, save he that striveth lawfully. (2 Tim. ii 5)
That we have thus to strive and fight during our life, the same Apostle assures us in these words: Take unto you the armour of God, that ye may be able to resist in the evil day, and to stand in all things perfect. Stand, therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of justice, and your feet shod with the preparation of the Gospel of peace. In all things taking the shield of faith, and wherewith ye may be able to extinguish all the fiery darts of the most wicked one. And take unto you the helmet of the hope of salvation, and the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God. (Eph. vi 13,17)
We, then, are soldiers, as thou was, O holy Martyr! Before ascending into heaven, our divine leader wishes to review his troops; do thou present us to him. He has loaded us with honours, notwithstanding our past disloyalties; we must, henceforth, prove ourselves worth of our position. In the Paschal Communion which we have received, we have a pledge of victory; how can we ever be so base as to permit ourselves to be conquered! Watch over us, O sainted warrior! Let thy prayers and example encourage us to fight against the dragon of hell. He dreads the armour we wear; for it is Jesus himself that prepared it for us, and tempered it in his own precious Blood: may we, like thee, present it to him whole and entire, when he calls us to our eternal rest!
There was a time when the whole Christian world loved and honoured thy memory with enthusiastic joy: but now, alas! this devotion has grown cold, and thy feast passes unnoticed by thousands. O holy martyr! avenge this ingratitude by imitating thy divine King, who maketh his sun to rise upon both good and bad; take pity on this world, perverted as it is by false doctrines, and tormented at this very time by the most terrible scourges. Have compassion on thy dear England, which has been seduced by the dragon of hell, and by him made the instrument for effecting his plots against the Lord his Christ. Take up thy speak as of old; give the monster battle, and emancipate the isle of Saints from his slavish yoke. Heaven and earth join in the great prayer! In the name of our Risen Jesus, aid thine own and once devoted people to a glorious resurrection!
Free download for celebrating the Feast of St. George!
... another champion of Christ Our Lord though the first this week not a martyr.
Liturgical Year - Christmas Vol. 1By: Dom Gueranger Imprimatur 1927
So far, the only ones we have seen standing round the Crib of our Jesus have been Martyrs: Stephen, overwhelmed with the shower of stones; John, the Martyr in heart, who survived his fiery torture; the Holy Innocents, massacred by the sword; Thomas, murdered in his cathedral; these are the champions of Christ, who keep guard in the palace of Bethlehem. Yet all Christians are not called to be Maryrs. Besides this countelss battalion of the King's favourite soldiers, there are other troops of sainted heros which form the heavenly army; and amongst these there are the Confessors, who conquered the world without shedding their blood in the combat. Through the place of honour in the service of the King belongs to the Martyrs, yet did the Confessors flight manfully for the glory of his name and the spreading of his Kindom. The palm is not in their hands, but they are crowned with the crown of justice, and Jesus, who gave it to them, has made it be part of his own glory that they should be near his throne.
The Church would therefore grace this glorious Christmas Octave with the name of one of her children, who should represent at Bethlehem the whole class of her unmartyred Saints. She chose a Confessor - St. Sylvester: a Confessor who governed the Church of Rome; and therefore the universal Church; a Pontiff whose reign was long and peaceful; a Servant of JEsus Christ adorened with every virtue, who was sent to edify and guide the world immediately after those fearful combats that had lasted for three hundred years, in which millions of Christians had gained victory by martyrdom, under the leadership of thirty Popes- predecessors of St. Sylvester - and they, too, all Martyrs.
So that Sylvester is messenger of the Peace
which Christ came to give to the world, of which the Angels sang on Christmas Night. He is the friend of Constantine; he confirms the Council of Nicaea; he organizes the discipline of the Church for the new era on which she is now entering: the era of Peace. His predecessors in the See of Peter imagined JEsus in his sufferings; Sylvester represented Jesus in his triumph. His appearance during this Octave reminds us that the divine Child who lies wrapped in swaddling-clothes, and is the object of Herod's persecution, is, notwithstanding all these humiliations, the Prince of Peace, the Father of the world to come
. (Isa. ix. 6.)
FIND DOM GUERANGER'S STORY OF ST. SYLVESTER OVER AT ALL THE SAINTS AND PETER AND PAUL!
Lives of the Saints
, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. 1894
December 31.—ST. SYLVESTER, Pope.
SYLVESTER was born in Rome toward the close of the third century. He was a young priest when the persecution of the Christians broke out under the tyrant Diocletian. Idols were erected at the corners of the streets, in the market-places, and over the public fountains, so that it was scarcely possible for a Christian to go abroad without being put to the test of offering sacrifice, with the alternative of apostasy or death. During this fiery trial, Sylvester strengthened the confessors and martyrs, God preserving his life from many dangers. In 312 a new era set in. Constantine, having triumphed under the " standard of the Cross," declared himself the protector of the Christians, and built them splendid churches. At this juncture Sylvester was elected to the chair of Peter, and was thus the first of the Roman Pontiffs to rule the flock of Christ in security and peace. He profited by these blessings to renew the discipline of the Church, and in two great Councils confirmed her sacred truths. In the Council of Arles he condemned the schism of the Donatists; and in that of Nicæa, the first general Council of the Church, he dealt Arianism its death-blow by declaring that Jesus Christ is the true and very God. Sylvester died A. D. 335.
Today's 12 days of Christmas Give A Way!
Today we are giving away a copy of the Illustrated Explanation of the Commandments
. This is one of the first books we are giving away that I haven't actually read yet though my in-laws tell me it is the most wonderful book they have read on the commandments! They have also made comments about how there was so much more involved in this and that commandment that they never realized. This little book is on my 'to read' pile and I would love to hear from the person who win's what they think of it!
From the publisher's website
: "A Complete and Thorough Exposition of the Commandments of God and of the Church. With Numerous Examples From Holy Scripture, The Fathers, and Other Sources. With Reflection and a Practice on Each Commandment. Originally printed by Benziger Brothers in 1897. From the Introduction: "Eternal salvation does not depend on faith alone, but also in keeping the Commandments. " This book is the most complete, the most thorough and the most enjoyable that I have ever read on this important subject. Imprimatur, 1897."
GIVE A WAY starts 12/29 at 12 AM
To print just this blog post please select the title of the post before hitting the print button.
Come let us adore Him!
In honour of our Lord's Divine Birth we will be giving something away each of the 12 days of Christmas! Check back every day to see what we are giving and enter the drawing.
The first item is a copy of Dom Gueranger's first Christmas volume from the Liturgical Year set! Over 200 pages for Christmas Eve and Day with a whole host of Saints for the 12 days of Christmas! A volume packed with wonderful Catholic information!
Read more about this set over at Refuge of Sinner's Publishing
On the second day of Christmas my True Love gave to me... the holy example of St. Steven
Lives of the Saints
, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. 1894p. 387
December 26.—ST. STEPHEN, First Martyr.
THERE is good reason to believe that St. Stephen was one of the seventy-two disciples of our blessed Lord. After the Ascension he was chosen one of the seven deacons. The ministry of the seven was very fruitful; but Stephen especially, "full of grace and fortitude, did great wonders and signs among the people." Many adversaries rose up to dispute with him, but "they were not able to withstand the wisdom and the spirit that spoke." At length he was brought before the Sanhedrim, charged, like his divine Master, with blasphemy against Moses and against God. He boldly upbraided the chief priests with their hard-hearted resistance to the Holy Ghost and with the murder of the "Just One." They were stung with anger, and gnashed their teeth against him. But when, "filled with the Holy Ghost and looking up to heaven, he cried out, 'Behold, I see the heavens opened and the Son of man standing at the right hand of God,' they rushed upon him, and dragging him forth without the city, they stoned him to death"Reflection
.—If ever you are tempted to resentment, pray from your heart for him who has offended you.
O Emmanuel, our King and Lawgiver, the Expectation and Saviour of the nations! come and save us, O Lord our God!
(c) J.W. 2012
The Liturgical Year - Advent Volume
By: Dom Gueranger Imprimatur 1927
O Emmanuel! King of peace! Thou enterest today the city of Thy predilection, the city in which Thou hast placed Thy temple - Jerusalem. A few years hence the same city will give Thee Thy cross and Thy sepulcher : nay, the day will come on which Thou wilt set up Thy judgement-seat within sight of her walls. But to-day Thou enterest the city of David and Solomon unnoticed and unknown. It lies on Thy road to Bethlehem. Thy blessed Mother and Joseph her spouse would not lose the opportunity of visiting the temple, there to offer to the Lord their prayers and adoration. They enter; and then, for the first time, is accomplished the prophecy of Aggeus, that great shall be the glory of this last house more than of the first; (Agg. ii.10) for this second temple has now standing within it an ark of the Covenant more precious than was that which Moses built; and within this ark, which is Mary, is contained the God whose presence makes her the holiest of sanctuaries. The Lawgiver Himself is in this blessed ark, and not merely, as in that of old, the tablet of stone on which the Law as graven. The visit paid, our living ark descends the steps of the temple, and sets out once more for Bethlehem, where other prophecies are to be fulfilled. We adore Thee, O Emmanuel! in this Thy journey, and we reverence the fidelity wherewith Thou fulfillest all that the prophets have written of Thee; for Thou wouldst give to Thy people the certainty of Thy being the Messias, by showing them that all the marks, whereby He was to be known, are to be found in Thee. And now, the hour is near; all is ready for Thy birth; come, then save us; come, that THou mayest not only be called our Emmanuel, but our Jesus, that is, He that saves us.
THE GREAT ANTIPHON TO JERUSALEM
O Jerusalem! city of the great God: lift up thine eyes round about, and see thy Lord, for he is coming to loose thee from thy chains.
O Key of David, and sceptre of the house of Israel! who
openest, and no man shutteth: who shuttest, and no man openeth: come, and lead the captive from prision, sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death.
O JESUS, Son of David! heir to his throne and his power! Thou art now passing over, in Thy way to Bethlehem, the land that once was the kingdom of Thy ancestor, but now is tributary to the Gentiles. Scarce an inch of this ground which has not witnessed the miracles of the justice and mercy of Jehovah, Thy Father, to the people of the old Covenant, which is so soon to end. Before long, when Thou hast come from beneath the virginal cloud which now hides Thee, Thou wilt pass along this same road doing good, (Acts x. 38.) healing all manner of sickness and every infirmity, (St. Matt. iv. 23.) and yet having not where to lay Thy head. (St. Luke ix. 58) Now, at least, Thy Mother's womb affords Thee the sweetest adoration and the tenderest love. But, dear Jesus, it is Thine own blessed will that Thou leave this loved abode. Thou hast, O eternal Light, to shine in the midst of this world's darkness, this prison where the captive, whom Thou hast come to deliver, sits in the shadow of death. Open his prison-gates by Thy all-powerful key. And who is the captive, but the human race, the slave of error and vice? Who is the captive , but the heart of man, which is thrall to the very passions it blushes to obey? Oh! come and set at liberty the world Thou hast enriched by Thy grace, and the creatures whom Thou hast made to be Thine own brethren.
ANTIPHON TO THE ANGEL GABRIEL
O Gabriel! the messenger of heaven, who camest unto me through the closed doors, and didst announce the Word unto me: Thou shalt conceive and bear a Son, and he shall be called Emmanuel.
We LOVE sharing the faith, and we feel the best way to do that is by sharing reprints of wonderful old books! Please join us this next week in our December Give A Way! Please make sure to share with your friends and family! We wouldn't want anyone to miss out. God bless!
5 copies of Dom Gueranger's Advent Book
from the Liturgical Year set!
3 copies of One Church is Not as Good as Another!
Written by a favorite author of ours, this little book is now back in print thanks to Refuge of Sinners publishing. Rev. Wilfred G. Hurley C.S.P. explains in convincing language that indifferentism, which says: "One church is good as another" is blasphemy and atheism. READ MORE HERE
1 set of Advent Wreath Candles
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2 copies of Sermons for the Sundays and Feasts of the Year
Not able to make it to mass on Sunday? This little book is the perfect book for your weekly Sunday sermon. And who better to give it than the great Cure d' Ars?!!! A reading for every Sunday in the year along with major feasts. The Cure always has great advice for anyone no matter their state of life. Read the details of the book here!
12 copies of the Liturgical Year Calendar
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"Mary in Hebrew signifies lady or sovereign: and truly the authority of her Son, who is the Lord of the world, constituted her Queen, both in fact and in name, from her very birth." -St. Peter Chrys.
The Liturgical Year
By: Dom Gueranger
Time After Pentecost V
FEAST OF THE MOST HOLY NAME OF MARY
'And the Virgin's name was Mary. (St. Luke, i. 27.) Let us speak a little about this name, which signifies star of the the sea, and which so well befits the Virgin Mother. Rightly is she likened to a star: for as a star emits its ray wthout being dimmed so the Virgin brought forth her Son without receiving any injury; the ray akes nought from the brightness of the star, nor the Son from His Mother's integrity. This is the noble star risen out of Jacob, whose ray illumines the whole world, whose splendour shines in the heavens, penetrates the abyss, and, traversing the whole earth, gives warmth rather to souls than to bodies, cherishing virtues, withering vices. Mary, I say, is that bright and incomparable star, whome we need to see raised above this vast sea, shining by her merits, and giving us light by her example.
Oh! whosoever thou art that seest thyself, amid the tides of this world, tossed about by storms and tempests rather than walking on the land, turn not thine eyes away from the shining of this star if thou wouldst not be overhwlemed by the hurricane. If squalls of temptations arise, or thou fall upon the rocks of tribulation, look to the star, call upon Mary. If thou art tossed by the wavese of pride or ambition, detraction or envy, look to the star, call upon Mary. If anger or avarice or the desires of the felsh dash against the ship of thy soul, turn thine eyes towards Mary. If, troubled by the enormity of thy crimes, ashamed of thy guilty conscience, terrified by dread of the judgment thou beginnest to sink into the gulf of sadness or the abyss of despair, think of Mary. In dangers, in anguish, in doubt, thnk of Mary, call upon Mary. Let her be ever on thy lips, ever in thy heart; and the better to obtain the helpp of her prayers, innitate the example of her life. Following her, thou strayest not; incoking her, thou desparest not' thinking of her, thou wanderest not' upheld by her, thou fallest not shielded by her, thou Following her, thou strayest not' invoking her, thou despairest not' thinking of her, thou anderest not' upheld by her, thou fallest not' shielded by her, thou fearest not; guided by her, thou growest not weary; favoured by her, thou reachest the goal. And thus dost thou experience in thyself how good is that saying; And the Virgin's name was Mary.' (Lessons of the 2nd nocturn of the feast)
Thus speaks the devout St. Bernard, in the name of the Church. But his pious explaination does not exhaust the meanings of this blessed name of Mary. St. Peter Chrysologus adds in this same night Office: 'Mary in Hebrew signifies lady or sovereign; and truly the authority of her Son, who is the Lord of the world, constituted her Queen, both in fact and in name, from her very birth.' (Peter Chyrs. Sermon cxlii, de Annuntiat).
Our Lady: such is the title which befits her in every way, as that of OUR LORD beseems her Son' it is the doctrinal basis of that worship of hyperdulia which belongs to her alone. She is below her Son, whom she adores as we do' but above all God's servants, both angels and men, inasmuch as she is His Mother. At the name of Jesus ever knee is bent' at the name of Mary every head is bowed. And although the former is the only name whereby we may be saved yet, as the Son can never be separated from His Mother, heaven unites their two names in its hymns of praise, earth in its confidence, hell in its fear and hatred.
It was therefore in the order of divine Providence that devotion to the most holy name of Mary should spread simultaneously with the cultus of the adorable name of Jesus, of which St. Bernadin of Siena was the apostle in the fifteenth century. In 1513 the Church of Cuenca in Spain was the first to celebrate, with the approbation of the Holy See, a special feast in honour of the name of Mary, while the Franciscan Order had not yet succeeded in obtaining a like privilege for the adorable name of Jesus. The reason of this is that the memory of that sacred name included the in the feast of the Circumcision, seemed to the prudence of the Pontiffs to suffice. From the same motive we findthe feast of the most holy name of Mary extended to the universal Church in the year 1683, and that of the most holy name of Jesus not until 1721.
Our Lady justifies her beautiful title y partaking in the warlike exploits of the King of kings her Son. The city of Vienna having been delivered by her, contrary to all hope, from the power of the Crescent, the venerable Innocent XI. made this feast the memorial of universal gratitude to the lieratrix of the west But we shall speak more explicitly of this glorious deliverance on September 12th, the day on which it occured.
(To be continued).......
'Come, my hostess; come from exile, thou shalt be crowned."
Sts. Peter, Martha, Mary Magdalene & Leonardo
Continuing on from last weeks Keeping It Catholic Monday
post, we share the story of St. Martha which also happens to be the continuation of the story of St. Mary Magdalene.The Liturgical YearTime after Pentecost Vol. IVBy: Dom GuerangerImprimatur 1927July 29 Saint Martha, VirginMAGDALENE this time was the first to meet our Lord. Scare a week had elapsed since her glorious passage, when she repaid her sister's former kind office, and came in her turn saying: 'The Beloved is here and calleth for thee.' And Jesus preventing her, appeared Himself and said: 'Come, my hostess; come from exile, thou shalt be crowned.' (RABAN. De vita B.M. Magd. et S. Marthae, xlvill). Hostess of the Lord, then , is to be Martha's title of nobility in heaven, as it was her priviledged name on earth. Into whatever city or town you shall enter,
said the Man-God to His disciples, inquire who in it is worthy, and there abide.
(St. Matt. x. 11.) Now St. Luke relates that as they went, our Lord himself entered into a certian town, and a certian woman named Martha received Him into her house.
(St. Luke x. 38). How could we give greater praise to Magdalen's sister than by bringing together these two texts of the holy Gospel?
This certian town
, where she was found wrothy to give Jesus a lodging, this village, says St. Bernard, (BERN. Sermo 2 in Assump. Beatae Mariae Virginis.) is our lowly earth, hidden like an obscure borough in the immensity of our Lord's possessions. The Son of God had come down from heaven to seek the lost sheep; He had come into the world He had made, and the world knew Him not; Israel, His own people, had not given Him so much as a stone whereon to lay His head, and had left Him in His thirst to beg water from the Samaritan. We, the Gentiles, whom He was thus seeking amid contradictions and fatigues, out we not, like Him ,to show our gratitude to her who, bravingpresent unpopularity and future persectuion, paid our debt to Him.
Glory, then, be to this daughter of Sion, of royal descent, who, faithful to the traditions of hospitatliy handed down from the patriarchs and early fathers, was blessed more than all of them in the exercise of this noble virtue! These ancestors of our faith, pilgrims themselves and without fixed habitation, knew more or less obscurely that the Desired of Israel and the Expectation of the nations was to appear as a wayfarer and a strangers on earth; and they honoured the future Saviour in the person of every stranger that presented himself at their tent door; just as we, their sons, in the faith of the same promises now accomplished, honour Christ in the guest whom His goodness sends us. This relation beween Him that was to come and the pilgrim seeking shelter made hospitatlity and the pilgram seeking shelter made hospitality the most honoured handmaid of divine charity. More that once did God show his approval by allowing angels to be entertained in human form. If such heavenly visituations were an honour of which our earth was not worthy, how much greater was Maratha's priviledge in rendering hospitatliy to the Lord of angels! If before the coming of Christ it was a great thing to honour Him in those who prefigured Him ,and if now to shelter and serve Him in His mystical members deserves eternal reward, how much greater and more meritorious was it to receive in person that Jesus, the very thought of whom gives to virtue its greatness and its merit. Again, as the Baptist excelled all the other prophets by having pointed out as present the Messias whom they announced as future, so Martha, by having ministered to the person of the Word made Flesh, ranks above all others who have ever exercised the works of mercy.
While Magdalen, then, keeps her better part at our Lord's feet, we must not think that Martha's lot is to be despised. As in one body we have many members, but all the members have not the same office
(Rom. xii. 4.), so each of us has a different work to perform in Christ, according to the grace we have received, whether it be to prophesy or to minister. And the apostle, explaining this diversity of vocations, says: I say, by the grace that is given me, to all that are among you, not to be more wise than it behoveth to be wise, but to be wise unto sobriety, and according as God hath divied to every one the measure of faith.
(Rom. xii. 3.) How many losses in souls, how many shipwrecks even, might be prevented by discretion, the guardian of doctrine and the mother of virtues.'Whoever,' says St. Gregory with his usual discernment, 'gives himself entirely to God, must take care not to pour himself out wholly in works, but must stretch forward also to the heights of contemplation. Neverthelss, it is here very important to notice that there is a great variety of spiritual temperaments. One who could give himself peacefully to the contemplation of God would be crushed by works and fall; another, who would be kept in a good life by the ordinary occuplations of men, would be mortally wounded by the sword of a contemplation above his powers: either for want of love to prevent repose from becoming torpor, or for want of fear to guard him against the illusions of pride or of the senses. He who would be perfect must, therefore, first accustom himself on the plain to the pracetice of the cirtues, in order to ascend more securley to the heights, leaving behind every impulse of the senses which can only distract the mind from its purpose, every image whose outline cannot adapt itself to the figurelss light he desires to behold. Action first, then, contemplation last. The Gospel praises Mary, but does not blame MArtha, because the merit of the active life is great, though that of contemplation is greater.' (Moral. in Job c 25 passim.)If we would penetrate more deeply into the mystery of the two sisters, let us notice that, though the preference is given to Mary, neverthelss it is not in her house nor in that of their brother Lazarus, but in MArtha's house, that the Man-God takes up His abode with those He loves. Jesus, says St. John, loved Martha, and her sister Mary, and Lazarus. (St. John xi. 5) Lazarus, a figure of the penitents whom His all-powerful mercy daily calls from the death of sin to the divine life; Mary, giving herself up even in this life to the occupation of the next; and MArthya, who is here mentioned first as being the eldest, as first in order of time mystically, according to what St. Gregory says, and also as being the one upon whom the other two depend in that home of which she was the care.
Here we recognize a perfect type of the Church, wherein, with the devotedness of fraternal love, and under the ey of our heavenly Father, the active ministry takes the precedence, and holds the place of government over all who are drawn by grace to Jesus. We can understand the Son of God showing a preference for this blessed house; He was refreshed from the weariness of His journeys by the devoted hospitality He there received, but still more by the sight of so perfect an image of that Church for whose love He had come on earth.
Martha, then, understood by anticipation that he who holds the first place must be the servant, as the Son of Man came not to be ministered to, but to minister; and as, later on, the vicar of Jesus, the prince of prelates in the holy Church, was to call himself the servant of the servants of God. But in serving Jesus, as she served also with Him and for Him her brother and her sister, who can doubt that she had the greatest share in these promises of the Man-God: He that ministers to Me shall flollow Me, and where I am, there shall also My minster be, and My Father will honour him.
And that beautiful rule of ancient hospitatlity, which created a link like that of relationship between the host and the guest once received, could not have been passed over by our Emmanuel on this occasion, since the Evangelist says: As many as received Him, He gave them power to be made sons of God. (St. John i. 12.) And He Himself declares that whoever receives Him, receives also the Father who sent Him.
The peace promised to every house deemed worthy of receiving the apostolic messengers, that peace which cannot be without the spirit of adoption of sons, rested on Martha with surpassing fulness. The too human impetuousity she at first showed in her eager solicitude had given our Lord an opportunity of showing His divine jealousy for the perfection of a soul so devoted and so pure. The sacred nearness of the King of peace stripped her lively nature of the last remnants of restless anxiety; while her service grew even more actie and was ewell pleasing to Him ,her ardent faith in Christ, the Son of the living God, gave her the undertanding of the one thing necessary, the better part which was one day to be hers. What a master of the spiritual life Jesus here showed Himself to be; what a model of discreet firmness, of patient sweetness, of heavenly wisdom in leading souls to the higest summits!
As He had counselled His disciples to remain in the one house, the Man-God Himself, to the end of His earthly career, continually sought hospitatliy at Bethania; it was from thence He set out to redeem the world by His dolorious Passion; and when leaving this world, it was from Bethania that He ascended into heaven/ Then did this dewelling, this paradise on earth, which had given shelter to God Himself, to His Virigin Mother, to the whole college of apostles, seem too lonely to its inmates. Holy Church will tell us presently how the Spirit of Pentecost, in loving-kindness to us Gentiles, led into Gual this blessed family of our Lord's friends.
On the banks of the Thone, Martha was still the same: full of motherly compassion for every misery, spending herself in deeds of kindness. Always surrounded by the poor, says the ancient historian of the two sisters, she fed them with tender care, with food which heaven abundantly supplied to her charity, while she herself, the only one she forgot, was contented with herbs; and as in the glorious past she had served the Head of the Church in person, she now served Him in His members, and was full of loving-kindness to all. Meantime she delighted in practices of penance that would frighten us. Martyred thus a thousand times over, Martha with all the pwoers of her holy soul yearned for heaven. Her mind lost in God, she spent the whole nights absorbed in prayer. Ever prostrate, she adored Him reigning gloriously in heaven, whom she had seen without glory in her own house. Often, too, she would travel through towns and villages, announcing to the people Christ the Saviour.
Avignon and other cities of the province of Vienne were thus eveangelized by her. She delivered Tarascon from the old serpent, who in the shape of a hideous monster, not content with tyrannizing over the souls of men, devoured even their bodies. It was here that Tarascon, in the midst of the community of virgins she had founded, that she heard our Lord inviting her to receive hospitatlity from Him in heaen, in return for that which she had given Him on earth. Here she still rests, protecting her people of Provence, and receiving strangers in memory of Jesus. The peace of the blessed, which seems to breath from her noble image, fills the heart of the pilgram as he kisses her apostolic feet; journey in this land of exile, he carries away with him, like a perfume of his fatherland, the rememberance of her simple, toughing epitaph: SOLLICITA NON TUBATUR - ever zealous, she is no longer troubled.