"We should reflect that the resurrection of Christ is an assured pledge of our own, and that our body, if we have laboured to sanctify it here below, will one day participate in the qualities of the glorified body of Jesus Christ." -Grou.
A blessed and most holy Easter to you all! We pray that your Easter Sunday was as beautiful as ours was warm and bright. God graced us with the most beautiful sunshine on the day dedicated to His Son! Typically in Oregon it rains EVERY year, but not this year, God is good!
We also pray that your Holy Week devotions are starting to show their fruits and that Easter JOY is upon you all. Last year on our blog we hosted a series of Easter posts, we would like to encourage you to read those again this year over at our 50 Days of Easter
. A Resurrection Coloring
page may also be printed for our littlest readers, and Easter Holy Cards
here to be printed and laminated. We pray your Easter week is a blessed one!
From Catholic Life
- Imprimatur 1908
This is the Christian Pasch, or Passover. The Jewish Passover commemorated their passage out of Egypt, and their deliverance from its slavery, of Egypt, and their deliverance from its slavery, and so was a type. Jesus Christ at His Resurrection passed from death to life, and by this passage triumphed over the powers of hell, rescued us from their tyranny and from eternal death, and opened a passage for us to eternal life. At that time "Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Salome brought sweet spices, that coming, they might anoint Jesus. And very early in the morning, the first day of the week, they came to the sepulcher, and sun being now risen. And they said one to another: Who shall roll us back the stone from the door of the sepulcher? And looking, they saw the stone rolled back. For it was very great. And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side clothed with a white robe; and they were astonished. Who saith to them: Be not affrighted; you seek Jesus of Nazareth, Who was crucified: He is risen, He is not here, behold the place where they laid Him. But go, tell His disciples and Peter, that He goeth before you into Galilee: there you shall see Him, as He told you.'*
To celebrate this festival with due dispositions, we ought with joy and gratitude to adore Jesus Christ in His immortal state, and to rise with Him, by entering as He did upon a new life, so as never more to die by relapsing into sin, and to persevere in the practice of virtue and good works. We may know if we have entered on this new life- if we are at peace with God; if we love whatever leads to Him, such as prayer, reading good books, hearing the word of God, and assisting devoutly at Mass and other devotions. As we hope, too, that the Last Day our bodies will rise and partake of the privileges of our Lord's glorious body, so we should respect our bodies, resist evil passions, and not use the members of our body for sinful purposes, but for the practice of good works. "We, Lord, with faithful heart and cheerful voice, On this Thy glorious rising day rejoice: O Thou! Whose conq'ring power o'er came the grave, By thy victorious grace us, sinners, save."
* Mark xvi. 1-7
Lamoriciére's name stands prominently in the military history of France in the nineteenth century. His early intercourse with certain students of the Polytechnic School, and his almost constant engagement in warfare, dimmed for a time the lustre of the lofty Catholic principles instilled into him by a pious father. It is true he never lost his faith, but the smoke of the battle-field sometimes concealed it from his view. A period of forced rest, in which he could count no longer on outward victories, turned his thoughts to interior conquest, and thus he left an example of spiritual bravery which, while it excites our admiration, stimulates us to imitation. One day an old colleague and friend visited him and found him bent over maps, in which he was noting with anxiety the movements of the armies to the Crimea. To keep down the curled corners of the map he had employed the books which were the usual companions of his leisure hours - a Catechism, his Prayer Book, the "Imitation," and some other pious book. The visitor could not conceal his surprise at the sight of the four silent witnesses of the General's occupation.
"Well, yes," said Lamoriceiére, "that is my occupation. I do not wish to remain like you between day and night. I like to know where I go and by what I hold; and I make no secret of it."
At an age when few seek to modify their long formed character and habits, he laboured diligently to soften and tone the asperities of his impetuous nature. Every day he became more patient, more indulgent to adversaries, and calmer under the many little annoyances with which this life is strewn. For instance, he was told that one of his best horses had broken its knees: some years before, the same matter had been made the signal for a storm, and coachman trembled to think of what was coming; but to his astonishment the General was not even impatient. In his camp-life he had learned a somewhat free and dictatorial mode of speaking, and was much addicted to swearing; but these faults entirely disappeared.
When his son died he felt it very much, and what added to his grief was the fact that he could not be present. "My God!" he exclaimed, "You send us bitter trials in this world; I beseech You to be merciful to us in the next."
Although not unexpected, Lamoriciére's death was rather sudden. He died on his knees with the crucifix pressed to his breast, and received absolution while still conscious. It would be well for the world to have many more such lives to record.
Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation!
August is dedicated by Holy Mother Church to the Immaculate Heart of Mary (also know as the Most Pure Heart of Mary).
The files for August for the Liturgical Year Bulletin Board may be found at the end of this post or on the Liturgical Year Bulletin Board Page
.Some special feasts coming up in August:August 6th - The Transfiguration of Our Lord Jesus Christ AugustAugust 14th- Vigil of the AssumptionAugust 15th- The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin MaryAugust 22nd- The Immaculate Heart of Mary
Our Lady of Mt. Carmel - July 16
The Liturgical Year- Time After Pentecost Vol. IV
By: Dom Gueranger
Towering over the waves on the shore of the Holy Land, Mount Carmel, together with the short range of the same name, forms a connecting link to two other chains, abounding with glorious memories, namely: the mountains of Galilee on the north, and those of Judea on the south.
'In the day of My love, I brought thee out of Egypt into the land of Carmel,' (Cf. Jerem. ii 2,7) said the Lord to the daughter of Sion, taking the name of Carmel to represent all the blessings of the Promised Land; and when the crimes of the chosen people were about to bring Judea to ruin, the prophet cried out: 'I looked, and behold Carmel was a wilderness: and all its cities were destroyed at the presence of the Lord, and at the presence of the wrath of His indignation. (Ibid. iv 26). But from the midst of the Gentile world a new Sion arose, more loved than the first; eight centuries beforehand Isaias recognized her by the glory of Libanus, and the beauty of Carmel and Saron which were given her. In the sacred Canticle, also, the attendants of the Bride sing to the Spouse concerning His well-beloved, that her head is like Carmel, and her hair like the precious threads of royal purple carefully wove and dyed (Cant. vii 5).
There was, in fact, around Cape Carmel, an abundant fisher of the little shell-fish which furnished the regal colour. Not far from there, smoothing away the slopes of the hoble mountian, flowed the torrent of Cison, that dragged the carcasses (Judg. v 21) of the Chanaanites, when Debbora won her famous victory. Here lies the plain where the Madianites were overthrown, and Sisara felt the power of her that was called the Mother of Israel (Ibid. 7). Here Gedeom, too, marched against Madian in the name of the Woman terrible as an army set in array (Cant. vi. 3,9), whose sign he had received in the dew-covered fleece. Indeed, this glorious plain of Esdrelon, which streches away from the foot of Carmel, seems to be surrounded with prophetic indications of her who was destined from the beginning to crush the serpent's head: not far from Esdrelon, a few defiles lead to Bethulia, the city of Judith, type of Mary, who was the true joy of Isreael and the honour of her people (Judith xv. 10); while nestling among the northern hills lies Nazareth, the white city, the flower of Galilee (Hieron, Epist. xivi. Paulae et Eustochii ad Marcellam).
When Eternal Wisdom was playing in the world, forming the hills and establishing the mountians, she desitined Carmel to be the special inheritance of Eve's victorious daughter. And when the last thousand years of expectation were opening, and the desire of all nations was developing into the spirit of prophecy, the father of prophets ascended the priviledged mount, thence to scan the horizon. The triumphs of David and the glories of Solomon were at an end: the sceptre of Juda, broken by the schism of the ten tribes, threatened to fall from his hand; the worship of Baal prevailed in Israel. A long-continued drought, figure of the aridity of men's souls, had parched up every spring, and men and beasts were dying beside the empty cisterns, when Elias the Thesbite gathered the people, representing the whole human race, on Mount Carmel, and slew the lying prophets of Baal. Then, as the Scripture relates, prostrating with his face to the earth, he said to his servant: Go up, look towards the sea. And he went up and looked and said: There is nothing. And again he said to him: Return seven times. And at the seventh time: Behold, a little cloud arose out of the sea like a man's foot (3 Reg. xviii).
Blessed cloud! unlike the bitter waves from which it sprang, it was all sweetness. Docile to the least breath of heavenm it rose light and humble, above the immense havey ocean; and screening the sun, it tempered the heart that was scorching the earth and restored to the stricken world life and grace and fruitfulness. The promised Messiaas, the Son of Man, set His impress upon it, showing to the wicked serpent the form of the heel that aws to crush Him. The prophet, personifying the human race, felt his youth renewed; and while the welcome rain was already refersing the valleys, he ran before the chariot of the king of Israel. Thus did he traverse the great plain of Esdrelon, even to the mysteriously-named town of Jezrahel, where, according to Osee, the children of Juda and Israel were again to have but one head in the great day of Jezrahel (i.e., of the seed of God), when the Lord would seal His eternal nuptials with a new people (Osee i. II, and ii. 14-24). Later on, from Sunam, near Jezrahel, the mother whose son was dead crossed the same plain of Esdrelon, in the opposite direction, and ascended Mount Carmel, to obtain from Eliseus the resurrection of her child, who was a type of us all (4 Reg. iv. 8-37). Elias had already departed in the chariot of fire, to await the end of the world, when he is to give testimony, together with Henoch, to the son of her that was signified by the clourd (Apoc. xi 3,7); and the disciple, clothed with the mantle and the spirit of his father, had taken possesion, in the name of the sons of the prophets, of theaugust mountian honoured by the manifestation of the Queen of prophets. Henceforward Carmel was sacred in the eyes of all who looked beyond this world. Gentiles as well as Jews, philosophers and princes, came here on pilgrimage to adore the true God; while the chosen souls of the Church of the expectation, many of whom were already wandering in deserts and in mountians (Heb. xi 38), loved to take up their abode in its thousand grottos; for the ancient traditions seemed to linger more lovingly in its silent forests, and the perfume of its flowers fortokened the Virgin Mother. The cultus of the Queen of Heaven was already established; and to the family of her devout clients, the ascetics of Carmel, might be applied the words spoken later by God to the pious descendants of Reehab: There shall not be wanting a man of this race, standing before Me for ever (Jerem. xxxv. 19).
St. Simon Stock
At length figures gave place to the reality; the heavens dropped down their dew, and the Just One came forth from the cloud. When His work was done and He returned to His Father, leaving His blessed Mother in the world, and sending His Holy Spirit to the Church, not the least triumph of that Spirit of love was the making known of Mary to the new-born Christians of Pentecost. "What a happiness," we then remarked, "for those neophytes who were privileged avow the rest in being brought to the Queen of heaven, the Virgin Mother of Him who was the hope of Israel! They saw this second Eve, they conversed wither, they felt for her that filial affection wherewith she inspired all the disciples of Jesus. The liturgy will speak to us at another season of these flavoured ones (Paschal Time, Voll III. p 314). The promise is fulfilled to-day. In the lessons of the feast of the Church tells us how the disciples of Elias and Elisus became Christians at the first preaching of the apostles, and being permitted to hear the sweet words of the Blessed Virgin and enjoy an unspeakable intimacy with her, they felt their veneration for her immensely increased. Returning to the loved mountain, where their less fortunate fathers had lived but in hope, they built on the very spot where Elias had seen the little cloud rise up out of the sea, an oratory to the purest of virgins; hence they obtained the name of Brothers of Blessed Mary of Mount Carmel (Lessons of 2nd Nocturn).
In the twelfth century, in consequence of the establishment of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem, many pilgrims from Europe came to swell the ranks of the solitaries on the holy mountain; it therefore became expedient to give their hitherto eremitical life a form more in accordance with the habits of Western nations. The legate Aimeric Malafaida, partriach of Antioch, gathered them into a community under the authority of St. Berthold, who was thus the first to receive the tile of Prior-General. At the commencement of the next century, Blessed Albert, patriarch of Jerusalem and also apostolic legate, completed the work of Aimeric by giving a fixed Rule to the Order, which was now, through the influence of princes and knights returned from the Holy Land, beginning to spread into Cyprus, Sicily, and the countries beyond the sea. Soon, indeed, the Christians of the East being abandoned by God to the just punishments of their sins, the vindictiveness of the conquering Saracens reached such a height in this age of trial for Palestine, that the full assembly, held on Mount Carmel under Alan and Breton, resolved upon a complete migration, leaving only a few friars eager for martyrdom to guard the cradle of the Order. The very year in which this took place (1245) Simon Stock was elected General in the first Chapter of the West, held at Aylesford in England.
Simon owed his election to the successful struggle he had maintained for the recognition of the Order which certian prelates, alleging the recent decrees of the Council of Lateran, rejected as having been newly introduced into Europe. Our Lady had then taken the cause of the friars into her own hands, and had obtained from Honorius III the decree of confirmation, which originated to-day's feast. This was neither the first nor the last favour bestowed by the sweet Virgin upon the family that had lived so long under the shadow, as it were, of her mysterious cloud, and shrouded like her in humility, with no other bond, no other pretension than the imitation of her hidden works and the contemplation of her glory. She herself had wished them to go forth from the midst of a faithless people; just, as before the close of that same thirteenth century, she would command her angels to carry into a Catholic land her blessed house of Nazareth. Whether or not the men of those days, or the short- sighted historians of our own time, ever thought of it, the one translation called for the other, just as each completes and explains the other,and each was to be, for our own Europe, the signal for wonderful favours from heaven.
In the night between the 15th and the 16th of July in the year 1251, the gracious Queen of Carmel confirmed to her sons by a mysterious sign the right of citizenship she has obtained for them in their newly adopted countries; as mistress the mother of the entire religious state she conferred upon them with her queenly hands the scapular, hitherto the distinctive garb of the greatest and most ancient religious family of the West. On giving St. Simon Stock this badge, ennobled by contact with her sacred finger, the Mother of God said to him:
"Whosoever shall die in this habit shall not suffer eternal flames."
But not against hell fire alone was the all-powerful intercession of the Blessed Mother to be when every holy soul was imploring heaven to put a period to that long and disastrous widowhood of the Church which followed the death of Clement V, the Queen of Saints appeared to James d'Euse, whom the world was soon to hail as John XXII; she foretold to him his approaching elevation to the Sovereign Pontificate, and at the same time recommended him to publish the privilege she had obtained from her Divine Son for her children of Carmel - viz. a speedy deliverance from purgatory.
"I, their Mother, will graciously go down to them on the Saturday after their death, all whom I find in purgatory I will deliver and will bring to the mountain of life eternal."
Pope John XXII
These are the words of our Lady herself, quoted by John XXII in the Bull which he published for the purpose of making known the privilege, and which was called the Sabbatine Bull on account of the day chosen by the glorious benefactress for the exercise of her mercy.
We are aware of the attempts made to nullify the authenticity of these heavenly concessions; but our extremely limited time will not allow us to follow up these worthless struggles in all their endless details. The attack of the chief assailant, the too famous Launoy, was condemned by the Apostolic See; and after, as well as before, these contradictions, the Roman Pontiffs confirmed, as much as need be, by their supreme authority, and the substance and even the letter of the precious promises. The reader may find in special works the enumeration of the many indulgences with which the Popes have, time after time, enriched the Carmelite family, as if earth would vie with heaven in favoruing it. The munificence of Mary, the pious gratitude of her sons for the hospitality given them by the West, and lastly, the authority of St. Peter's successors, soon made these spiritual riches accessible to all Christians, by the institution of the Confraternity of the holy Scapular, the members whereof participate in the merits and privileges of the whole Carmelite Order. Who shall tell the graces, often miraculous, obtained through this humble garb? Who could count the faithful now enrolled in the holy militia? When Benedict XIII, in the eighteenth century, extended the feast of July 16 to the whole Church, he did but give an official sanction the universality already gained by the cults of the Queen of Carmel.
The holy liturgy gives the following account of the history and object of the feast:
When on the holy day of Pentecost the apostles, through heavenly inspiration, spoke divers tongues and worked many miracles by the invocation of the most holy name of Jesus, it is said that many men who were walking in the footsteps of the holy prophets Elias and Eliseus, and had been prepared for the coming of Christ by the preaching of John the Baptist, saw and acknowledged the truth, and at once embraced the faith of the Gospel. These new Christians were so happy as to be able to enjoy familiar intercourse with the Blessed Virgin, and venerated her with so special an affection, that they, before all others, built a chapel to the purest of Virgins on that very spot of Mount Carmel where Elias of old had seen the cloud, a remarkable type of the Virgin, ascending.
Many times each day they came together to the new oratory, and with pious ceremonies, prayers, and praises honoured the most Blessed Virgin as the special protectress of their Order. For this reason, people from all parts began to call them the Brethren of the Blessed Mary of Mount Carmel; and the Sovereign Pontiffs not only confirmed this title, but also granted special indulgences to whoever called either the whole Order or individual Brothers by that name. But the most noble Virgin not only gave them her name and protection, she also bestowed upon blessed Simon the Englishman the holy scapular as a token, wishing the holy Order to be distinguished by that heavenly garment and to be protected by it from the evils that were assailing it. Moreover, as formerly the Order was unknown in Europe, and on this account many were importuning Honorius III for its abolition, the loving Virgin Mary appeared by night to Honorius and clearly bade them receive both the Order and its members with kindness.
The blessed Virgin has enriched the Order so dear to her with so many privileges, not only in this world, but also in the next (for everywhere she is most powerful and merciful). For it is piously believed that those of her children who, having been enrolled in the Confraternity of the Scapular, have fulfilled the small abstinence and said the few prayers prescribed, and have observed chastity as far as their state of life demands, will be consoled by our Lady while they are being purified in the fire of purgatory, and will through her intercession be taken thence as soon as possible to the heavenly country. The Order thus laden with so many graces, has ordained that this solemn commemoration of the Blessed Virgin should be yearly observed for ever, to her greater glory.
Queen of Carmel, hear the voice of the Church as she sings to thee on this day. When the world was languishing in ceaseless expectation, thou were already its hope. Unable as yet to understand thy greatness, it nevertheless, during the reign of types, loved to clothe gratitude for benefits foreseen, it surrounded these with all the notions of beauty, strength, and grace suggested by the loveliest landscapes, the flowery plains, the wooded heights, the fertile valleys, especially of Carmel, whose very name signifies 'the plantation of the Lord. On its summit our fathers, knowing that Wisdom had set her throne in the cloud, hastened by their burning desires the coming of the saving sign: at length there was given to their prayers what the Scripture calls perfect knowledge, and the knowledge of the great paths of the holy clouds (Job xxxvii 16). And when He who maketh His chariot and His dwelling in the obscurity of a cloud had here in shown Himself, in a nearer approach, to the practiced eye of the father of prophets, when did a chosen band of holy persons gather in the solitudes of the blessed mountain, as heretofore Israel in the desert, to watch the least movements of the mysterious cloud, to receive from it their guidance in the paths of life, and their light in the long night of expectation.
O Mary, who from that hour didst preside over the watches of God's army, without ever failing for a single day: now that the Lord has truly come down through thee, it is no longer the land of Judea alone, but the whole earth that thou coverest as a cloud, shedding down blessings and abundance. Thine ancient clients, the sons of the prophets, experienced this truth when, the land of promise becoming unfaithful, they were forced to transplant into other climes their customs and traditions; they found that even into our far West the loud of Carmel had poured its fertilizing dew, and that nowhere would its protection be wanting to them. This feast, O Mother of our God, is the authentic attestation of their gratitude, increased by the fresh benefits wherewith thy bounty accompanied the new exodus of the remnant of Israel. And we, the sons of ancient Europe, we too have the right to echo the expression of their loving joy; for since their tents have been pitched around the hills where the new Sion built upon Peter, the cloud has shed all around showers of blessing more precious than ever, driving back into the abyss the flames of hell and extinguishing the fire of purgatory.
Whilst, then, we join with them in thanksgiving to thee, deign thyself, O mother of divine grace, to pay our debt of gratitude to them. Protect them ever. Guard them in these unhappy times, when the hypocrisy of modern persecutors has more fatal results than the race of the Saracens. Preserve the life in the deep roots of the old stock, and rejoice it by the accession of the new branches, bearing, like the old ones, flowers and fruits that shall be pleasing to thee, O Mary. Keep in the hearts of the sons of that spirit of retirement and contemplation which animated their fathers under the shadow of the cloud; may their sisters, too wheresoever the Holy Spirit has established them, be ever faithful to the traditions of the glorious past, so that their holy lives may avert the tempest and draw down blessings from the mysterious cloud. May the perfume of penance that breathes from the holy mountain purify the now corrupted atmosphere around; and may Carmel ever present to the Souse the type of the the beauties He loves to behold in His Bride!
Around the Year with the Von Trapp Family
By: Maria Von Trapp from 1955
With every passing year I realize more deeply how joyful our religion is. The more one penetrates into what it means to be Catholic, the fuller life becomes.
There is one great art that we are taught from our childhood and for which we cannot be grateful enough, and that is how to celebrate feasts. The little ones grow up hearing again and again: "Today is the feast of St. Joseph" "Next week is the feast of the Annunciation.. the feast of St. John... the feast of the Holy Family... the feast of the Assumption." And these are not words only. Soon the children discover that these days have a truly festive character. Later, when they grow up and learn to use their own missals, they find that Holy Mother Church prepares a feast for us almost every day of the year. Naturally, these feast days are not equally important. Two of them, the anniversaries of Our Lord's Resurrection and of the Descent of the Holy Ghost, are of such magnitude and solemnity that the Church assigns a whole week to them. She wants to teach her children to take time for celebrating. What a necessary lesson for us of the fast-living twentieth century, when time has become money and the most important even in people's lives - their wedding - has been reduced from the ten-day celebration of old to a ten minute formality at the Justice of the Peace!
For Easter and Pentecost the Church permits no other feasts to interfere. This is called "a privileged octave of the first order." There are other great feast days, such as Epiphany and Corpus Christi, Christmas, the Ascension, the fast of the Sacred Heart, and the feasts of the Blessed Mother, which also have an octave, and at last a commemoration of that feast is made each day.
If the first place is given to the feasts of Our Lord, the second is given to those of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Then come the holy angels, and they are followed by the saints who had a share in the plan of the Incarnation, as St. Joseph, St. John the Baptist, Peter and Paul and the other Apostles, whose feasts are always celebrated with special solemnity.
Then we are told to celebrate as a feast of dedication of churches, the anniversaries of the martyrdom of the saints, the commemoration of holy popes, bishops, teachers of the Church, confessors, virgins and all holy women. According to their importance these feasts will be more or less solemnly celebrated; but even a simple feast day is a feast day.
Once in a while there is a day in the calendar when we do not celebrate a feast. This is called a "ferial day." During most seasons these are few and far between, and it is all the more striking, therefore, to come to the six weeks of Lent and find that the Church has prepared a special mass for every ferial day and wishes her children to refrain from celebrating feasts during these weeks of penance. That makes the great Alleluia, which introduces the feast of the Resurrection, all the more jubilant.
Living through this cycle of festive evens every year, one cannot help but learn that one should not just live one's life, or spend one's life, or go through one's life, but celebrate one's life. Whether the days are filled with bliss or mourning, we have learned to live almost each one as a special feast day. As the Introit of many a Mass bids us: "Guadeamus omnes in Domino, diem festum celebrantes." ("Let us all rejoice in the Lord, celebrating this festival day.")
If the time from the First Sunday in Advent until Pentecost seems like one long uninterrupted celebration of the greatest mysteries of our faith, the time from Pentecost to the end of the Church Year appears much more sober.
The second half of the Church year is referred to in Austria as "The Green Meadow," because of the green color of the vestments on the Sundays after Pentecost, whereas, until then, they had been violet, red, or white. If the festive character of the first part of the year is comparable to the mountain chains of the Alps or Andes, the single feasts in the months after Pentecost are like isolated peaks towering above the green meadow.
Feasts of the Green Meadow
Two more weeks until the 2011-2012 Holy Simplicity Planner
starts! Get your copy now in time to get the most use out of your home*school*Liturgical Year planner! Plan next years lessons, yearly goals, daily task sheet and more!
"Come and drink at the table of my bliss, in order to fortify yourself and enable you to act courageously, for the road is long and difficult, and you will often be obliged to pause and take a breath and rest in My Sacred Heart."
-The Sacred Heart; Anecdotes and Examples
Welcome to Feria Friday, where every Friday we share a saints story and 5 meatless recipes in honour of Christ's Passion and death on the Cross. In regards to Church use 'feria' means without and is used to mean a day in the Church calendar that is without a feast of a saint. Typically in our posts we use 'feria' in reference to recipes without meat.
Today is a different occasion though and there is a great feast on this Friday, the Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus! So for such a great day our post will be a little bit different. Instead of sharing a Saint story, below is an article on the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus and below are some activities and resources for celebrating such a wonderful feast. May the Sacred Heart of Jesus send you an abundance of blessings!
Around the Year with the Von Trapp Family
By: Maria Von Trapp 1955
THE FEAST OF THE SACRED HEART
Eight days after Copus Christi follows the feast of the Sacred Heart. After Jesus had died for us on the Cross, He wanted to do even more - to give His last drop of blood. And so the Roman soldier pierced His heart with a lance. One would think this would have convienced all later generations of their Redeemer's love. But the "Prince of this world" saw to it that Christians in the course of time became forgetful of this love. To remind us, JEsus in 1675 appeared to a humble little nun in France, St. Margaret Mary, all aglow and radiant, the Risen Christ of Easter Sunday. On His breast she saw His heart all afrie. Our Lord pointed to it, saying, "Behold, this heart which has loved men so much," and He told her to spread the news: everyone who would venerate this symbol of the Divine Heart He wouls reward with divine generosity.
I will give them all the graces necessary in their state of life.
I will establish peace in their houses.
I will comfort them in all their afflictions.
I will be their secure refuge during life, and above all in death.
I will bestow a large blessing upon all their undertakings.
Sinners shall find in My Heart the source and the infinite ocean of mercy.
Tepid souls shall grow fervent.
Fervent souls shall quickly mount to high perfection.
I will bless every place where a picture of My Heart so be set up and honored.
I will give to priests the gift of touching the most hardened hearts.
Those who shall promote this devotion shall have their names written in My Heart, never to be blotted out.
I promise them in the excessive mercy of My Heart that My all-powerful love will grant to all those who communicate on the first Friday in nine consecutive months the grace of final penitence; they shall not die in My disgrace nor without receiving the Sacraments; My Divine Heart shall be their safe refuge in this last moment.
As our home is called "Cor Unum" and our motto for daily life that we want to be one heart and soul, we chose the feast of the Sacred Heart as our family feast. On that day, after a Solemn High Mass and the feast-day breakfast, we have our yearly family conference. We report on all the doings of the past year, we talk about the plans of the coming year. This is the day for every one of us to say whether he or she wants to stay in the family choir known as the Trapp Family Singers for another season; whoever wants to get married or whoever wants to do something on his own - this is the day to say so. This custom comes from the old country. Many families have their family day on the feast of the Holy Family in January, some on the feast of St. Joseph, who was a family man.
Links & Resources
Saint Linus~Pope and Martyr (†67)
Source: Les Petits Bollandistes:Vies des Saints, by Msgr. Paul Guérin (Bloud
et Barral: Paris, 1882), Vol. 11.
Saint Linuswas converted in Rome in the days when Saint Peter was preaching
the Gospelthere. This nobleman, originally from the city of Volterra in Tuscany,
left hisfather and renounced his heritage, to practice with greater perfection
thedoctrine of Our Lord Jesus Christ. He soon gave admirable proofs of his
zeal,learning and prudence, and the first Vicar of Christ employed him in
preachingand the administration of the Sacraments.
He crossedinto Gaul, and became the bishop of the city of Besançon. The
number of thefaithful increased daily by the conversion of many idolaters. The
Saint one dayattempted to turn some of those away from the celebration of a
festival inhonor of their gods, telling them that these idols were but statues
withoutbreath or sentiment, and represented only human beings whose vices were
publicknowledge. He exhorted them to turn to the unique God, Creator of the
heavensand the earth, to whom alone man owes the homage of sacrifice. A
prodigyfollowed his words; a column of their temple crumbled and caused the fall
of anidol, which broke into a thousand pieces. The worshipers, unmoved by
this,drove the Saint out of the city of Besançon, as the city’s tradition
He returnedto Rome and was there when the prince of the Apostles was
martyred. He wrote anaccount of the double martyrdom of Saints Peter and Paul,
and was himselfjudged worthy to replace the first Vicar of Christ. The register
of his reignrecords the creation of fifteen bishops and eighteen priests. The
Romanbreviary says that the faith and sanctity of this blessed Pope were so
greatthat he drove the demons from many possessed persons. He had governed
theChurch for scarcely a year before he, too, shed his blood for his Saviour.
Hisbody was buried in the Vatican near that of Saint Peter. It was only in the
17th century thathis tomb reappeared, marked Linus, when Pope Urban VIII had
thework on the Confession of Saint Peter completed inthe Basilica bearing his
In the midst of planning our Assumption Day activites I created a feast
day/liturgical season planner and thought I would share incase anyone else would
like to use it. Just download the file below. May you have a blessed Feast
of the Assumption of Our Lady into Heaven!!
|File Size: ||250 kb|
|File Type: || pdf|
Taken from "Practical Aids for Catholic Teachers" by Sister Mary Aurelia, O.S.F., M.A. (Sisters of St. Francis, Millvale, Pa.) and Rev. Felix M. Kirsch, O.M.Cap., Litt.D. (Capuchin College, Catholic Uniersity, Washington, D.C.) written in 1928 with imprimaturs
St. Valentine's Day - February 14
To the Teacher: The feast of St. Valentine will give the Catholic teacher a splendid opportunity to encourage children to send messages and greetings of Catholic import and meaning to their friends instead of such that are not only foolish but often pagan in character and which take the form of valentines, as they are called. What purpose does it serve to let the children cut out hearts, darts, cupids, and the like, to send to their friends? How much better to suggest to the children to make religious pictures and booklets to send to their friends! A message of cheerfulness and encouragement to the sick, to those in affliction, in imitation of the thoughtfulness of St. Valentine is much better. The sending of valentines has assumed great proportions. Catholic teachers can start a crusade against this custom by introducing a counter movement which will serve to perpetuate the real motive that actuated St. Valentine. It will not do merely to frown on the custom or to voice disapproval; to combat it effectively something better must be substituted. This plan has been tried in some schools with great success. It appealed, not only to the children, but to the adult members of the family as well. If the children cannot make booklets, introduce the custom of sending holy pictures. It will be a good investment, even if the teacher must supply the pictures. Children do not usually make much use of holy pictures unless they are taught to mount them on construction paper or paste them in booklets. This is an interesting occupation for them and at the same time much good can be accomplished if they study the picture and write a sentence or two under each.
The courage of St. Valentine
The story of St. Valentine is very interesting and it shows that even when the saints were suffering every kind of pain and torture, they had the courage to go on and do all they could to help others. St. Valentine was a priest who did much good among the people. At the time he lived, wicked men were trying to kill every one that believed in Christ. They were especially anxious to kill those that were teaching the people to know Christ. St. Valentine was not afraid, but he went about doing his work, helping his people. When he was put into prison he did not forget his friends. He spent his time praying for them and in writing little letters to them. He tied these messages around the necks of pigeons and sent them to his friends. You can imagine how glad they were to get a letter from the good Father Valentine as they called him. These letters cheered the people and helped to make them strong in their faith. Now you know why people send valentines. However, instead of sending such silly messages as some people are sending today, we shall send kind letters to the sick, the poor, the helpless, to cheer them in their sufferings. That is what St. Valentine did.
I have a little plan for you. I know you will wish to be like St. Valentine and make others happy. Now you say, "How can we do that?" I shall tell you. It is very easy. Suppose you make a booklet containing some beautiful pictures of the Infant Jesus or the Blessed Virgin or some other saint. I know you can make somebody happy by sending them such a booklet. What do you think of my plan? Do you wish to do this? To whom can we send the booklets? That can be easily settled. There are many children in hospitals or in orphan asylums. Don't you think they would like your little books? Would it make them feel better? Would St. Valentine want you to do that? Make uproar minds today which pictures you wish to use for your booklet. You can paste the pictures into it during your spare time. Tomorrow we shall get them ready to send away. While you are making booklets, think of St. Valentine and the messages he sent to his friends. Ask him to help you make others happy, especially those that are sick or in trouble.
1. I will make the best booklet I know how to make
2. I will not spend any money on silly valentines, but I will make pictures or booklets to send to my friends.
Hearts good and true
Have wishes few
In narrow circles bounded,
And hope that lives
On what God gives
Is Christian hope well founded.
Small things are best:
Grief and unrest
To rank and wealth are given;
But little things
On little wings
Bear little souls to Heaven.
January is near it's end and one of the most known feast days of February is coming up, that of Saint Valentine.
St.Valentine (Valentino) was a Roman priest who performed marriages in spite of Claudius II's law against such (Claudius believed that marriage was distracting to his soldiers, so outlawed it to them for a time). Fr. Valentine was martyred in A.D. 270 on the Flammian way, and at the site of his martyrdom, Julius I built a popular basilica.
Other than this, little is known. Because two other St. Valentines share this Feast day ("Valentine" was an extremely common name for Christians as it has the same root as the word "valor"), often their stories are confused, but it is the Roman priest-martyr whom we honor during the liturgy.
The relics of St. Valentine -- at least a great majority of them -- are, interestingly enough, in the Whitefriar Church associated with the Calced Carmelites in Dublin, Ireland. They were excavated from the Cemetery of St. Hippolytus, on the Triburtine Way in Rome in 1835 and were then given to Fr. Spratt, an Irish Carmelite, by Pope Gregory XVI in 1836. The relics, "together with a small vessel tinged with his blood," were deposited "in a wooden case covered with painted paper, well closed, tied with a red silk ribbon and sealed with our seals and we have so delivered and consigned to him, and we have granted unto him power in the Lord, to the end that he may retain to himself, give to others, transmit beyond the city (Rome) and in any church, oratory or chapel, to expose and place the said blessed holy body for the public veneration of the faithful without, however, an Office and Mass, conformably to the decree of the Sacred Congregation of Rites, promulgated on the 11th day of August 1691," as the letter accompanying the relics reads. On this Feast Day, his relics are carried in procession, and a special Mass is offered for young people and lovers.
Here are some online readings and craft resources, please share if you have more! Saint Valentine Coloring PageFrom Fisheaters.com"
To send a very Catholic valentine to someone you love, how about using a paraphrase of today's Collect as the basis for the text? Grant, I beseech Thee, O almighty God, that (Name of loved one), who celebrates the heavenly birthday of blessed Valentine, Thy Martyr, may by his intercession be delivered from all the evils that threaten (him/her). Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. ...with all the personal, mushy stuff at the bottom! For a romantic card for a spouse, some of the poetry found in Solomon's Canticle of Canticles
-- a Book which uses marital love as a metaphor for God's love for His Church -- cannot be surpassed for inspiration. "There is also a great Valentine Card making idea in "Celebrating the Liturgical Year" from Catholic Heritage Curricula.Let us spend this Feast Day teaching our little ones that we should love God as Saint Valentine loved Him, devoting all of our actions to God, doing everything we do for Him and for our eternal end.