A blessed Friday to you all! We would like to start this weeks Feria Friday
post with announcing the winners of the Christmas Card Giveaway
as well as the winners of the two copies of the Purgatory book and the Catholic Life book! And the winners are:Theresa - Catholic Life; or Feasts Fasts and Devotions of the Eccesiastical Year
Jennifer Kray - Purgatory Book
Lynna Wagner - Purgatory Book
And the winner of the box of Christmas Cards is Brian Pate!
All winners have been notified by the email address which was provided when registering for the giveaway. Thank you all for entering and we hope that you all have a blessed weekend!
Pictorial Lives of the Saints + Imprimatur John, Cardinal McCloskey
PROTESTANTISM pretends to regard the veneration which the Church pays to the relics of the Saints as a sin, and contends that this pious practice is a remnant of paganism. The Council of Trent, on the contrary, has decided that the bodies of the martyrs and other Saints, who were living members of Jesus Christ and temples of the Holy Ghost, are to be honored by the faithful. This decision was based upon the established usage of the earliest days of the Church, and upon the teaching of the Fathers and of the Councils. The Council orders, however, that all abuse of this devotion is to be avoided carefully, and forbids any relics to be exposed which have not been approved by the bishops, and these prelates are recommended to instruct the people faithfully in the teaching of the Church on this subject. While we regret, then, the errors of the impious and of heretics, let us profit by the advantages which we gain by hearkening to the voice of the Church.
This Weeks Friday Fare …. Food for the Soul
Anecdotes and Examples By: Rev. Francis Spirago +Imprimatur 1908Q. Does the first commandment forbid the honoring of the saints?A. The first commandment does not forbid the honoring of the saints, but rather approves of it; because by honoring the saints, who are the chosen friends of God, we honor God himself.
ST. WENCELSAUS IN THE SNOW
Imitation is the sincerest flattery, and the best way to horn the saints and through them to honor God is to follow their example. On one very severe and snoy night St. Wenceslaus was on his way to make a visit to the Blessed Sacrament in the neighboring church. His servant who accompanied him complained that his feet, though well shod, were nub with cold, while the saint, who wore but sandals, seemed not to suffer at all. "Put your feet prints into mine, and fear not," said the saint/ This the servant did, and presently a genial warmth spread from his feed throughout his whole body. This is a lively image of what takes place in the soul of the Christian who tries to walk i nthe footsteps of the saints by imitating their virtue.Q. Does the first commandment forbid us to pray to the saints?A. The first commandment does not forbid us to pray to the saints.
A FATHER IS TOLD TO TEACH HIS UNRULY SON TO PRAY
Prayer is the surest means of obtaining the grace of amendment. A man once went to a priest and asked him to advise him what to do with his son to make him behave better. He said he had flogged him several times, made him go hungry, and shut him up in the cold, but nothing had any effect on him. Then the priest asked whether the man had made his son pray, and had himself prayed for and with him. He acknowledged that he had not done so, but promised to have recourse to that means. He kept his word, and this means proved effectual' the boy corrected his ways and grew up to be worthy, God-fearing man.Q. What do we mean by praying to this saints?A. By praying to the saints we mean the asking of their help and prayers.
A MIRACULOUS DELIVERANCE
The year 1618 was marked by the outbreak of the Thirty Years' War. It is also memorable on account of the sentence passed on the imperial viceroys in Prague, Martinitz and Slawata, as well as their private secretary, Fabricius, who were condemned by the Protestants to be thrown out of the window of the royal palace. This is how it came to pass. On stringent decrees against the Protestants being issued by the Emperor Nathias, a large body of those heretics, headed by Count Thurn, entered forcibly into the royal place in Prague and charged the viceroy and governor with having instigated their august master to take those drastic measures. They announced their intention of putting the supposed authors of the decrees to immediate death. The two governors begged that at least a short time might be granted them to prepare for death, and that a confessor might be sent for. This privilege was however denied them; the crowd below insisted that according to an ancient Bohemian custom in regard to traitors, they should be thrown out the window. This was accordingly done. In spite of their expostulations and entreaties they were seized, conveyed to a window overlooking the deep but then dry moat of the castle, and flung down from a great height. Martinitz continually uttered the names of JEsus and Mary, invoking their mercy and their aid. The Protestants, hearing this, cried contemptuously: "Let us see whether Mary will come to help him." Martinitz fell, and rose to his feet without having sustained the slightest injury, so that the bystanders were forced to acknowledge that Our Lady had indeed come to his aid. Slawata struck his head gainst a stone window-sill, and lay on the ground insensible, blood flowing from his mouth. Martinitz lifted him in his arms and carried him away; and although a number of shots were fired at the fugitives, all missed their aim. Friends came to the help of the wounded man, so that they were both able t effect their escape. The Catholics who witnessed this scene doubted not that these men were rescued by a miraculous intervention of Providence, but the heretics said it was the effect of magic. The statement that the men fell upon heaps of dust, or that bushes broke their fall, is fictitious. We learn from this incident that we cannot do better than call upon JEsus and Mary in the hour of peril and sore distress.
Pictorial Lives of the Saints
+ Imprimatur John, Cardinal McCloskey
ST. LUKE, a physician at Antioch, and a painter, became a convert of St. Paul, and afterwards his fellow-laborer. He is best known to us as the historian of the New Testament. Though not an eye-witness of Our Lord's life, the Evangelist diligently gathered information from the lips of the apostles, and wrote, as he tells us, all things in order. The acts of the Apostles were written by this Evangelist as a sequel to his Gospel, bringing the history of the Church down to the first imprisonment of St. Paul at Rome. The humble historian never names himself, but by his occasional use of "we" for "they" we are able to detect his presence in the scenes which he describes. We thus find that he sailed with St. Paul and Silas from Troas to Macedonia; stayed behind apparently for seven years at Philippi, and, lastly, shared the shipwreck and perils of the memorable voyage to Rome. Here his own narrative ends, but from St. Paul's Epistles we learn that St. Luke was his faithful companion to the end. He died a martyr's death some time afterwards in Achaia.Reflection
.—Christ has given all He had for thee; do thou give all thou hast for Him.Read more about St. Luke at All The Saints and Peter and Paul and see a map of his travels
This weeks Friday Fare .... Food for the Soul
Anecdotes and Examples By: Rev. Francis Spirago +Imprimatur 1908
Q. Did God abaondom man after he fell into sin?A. God did not abandon man after he fell into sin, but promised him a Redeemer, who was to satisfy for man's sin and reopen to him the gates of heaven.
THE GENEROUS PRINCE
A certain great monarch had a favorite nobleman whom he had advanced in every way. Unfortunately, in the course of time, pride so took possession of this nobleman that, not content with being second in the kingdom, he formed a conspiracy whereby he hoped to place himself upon the throne. The scheme, however, was discovered in time to defeat it, and the victim of ambition was degraded and banished. But the young crown prince, who was of a noble, compassionate disposition and loved the former favorite dearly, went to his royal father and obtained forgiveness for that unfortunate and his family. Then the noble youth set out alone and on foot, and braved the hardships of a long and trying journey so that he himself might be first to announce the good tidings to his old friend. The joy of the poor exiles may be imagined, and also their thankfulness and life-long devotion to their generous prince. Infinitely more than this has the Son of God, the second PErson of the Blessed Trinity, done for us, and infinitely stronger is His claim on our lasting gratitude and love.Q. Who is the Redeemer?A. Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is the Redeemer of mankind.A MODERN PAGAN
There is only one true type of Christianity, and that is Catholicism. Protestantism is but a halfway house on the road to paganism. Catholics along cling tenaciously to Christ by faith in Him, hope in Him, and love for Him. During an exhibitation of paintings in a Boston art museum, a well-dressed intelligent-looking young gentleman was seen to be studying one work with special interest. The picture was a head of the Saviour. Turning presently to a lady near him, the young man begged pardon and asked to be enlightened as to what the picture reprensented. "That, sir, is the Saviour, the Redeemer," she replied. "And who," he asked, "was He?" "Why, Jesus Christ, of course," she answered, with a look of astonishment. The youth noticed her wonder and blushed deeply, saying: "You will forgive me, I trust, when I assure you I have never before heard of Him." The lady, herself a Protestant, told of the incident, and said that on inquiry she found he was from the northern NEw England States, from a town whose church, for want of a minster, was closed and whose young people were growing up in absolute ignorance of Christian truth. And, in fact, so many such towns are there that even the governor of the STate lately raised his voice in solemn protest.
Manual of the Holy Catholic Church
St. Valentine - February 14.
Of St. Valentine few particulars are known. He was a holy priest of Rome, put to death about the year 270. One of the great Roman gates was built in his honor and called after him. It is now known as "del Popolo." But the name of St. Valentine has come down to us associated with the remnant of a pagan custom, that of choosing for a year some person to whom honor should be paid. The casting of lots was held on the 15th of February, and with it began the Roman festival of Lupercalia, in honor of the god Pan and the goddess Jimo. To put down so dangerous a feast-making, the Church, according to Alban Butler, instituted the custom of drawing saints to be venerated for a year on the feast of St. Valentine, the day preceding that of the pagan lot-drawing, thus substituting heavenly for earthly love.
This old, old custom of choosing some one to love, to be looked up to, sets one thinking. So widespread a custom, lasting, too, for so long a time through the pagan . "Through tlie Middle Ages, even to our own day, seems to point to some natural cause. And it does. We are social beings in the natural and supernatural order, conscious of weakness and insufficiency when standing alone. In the garden of Paradise the foundation of society was laid when Adam said, "a man shall leave father and mother and cleave to his wife," showing that at no period of his life need he stand alone. The supernatural order is based upon the two great laws, '' Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart, and thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself."
And there is such a stretching out of hands towards our fellow-creatures, such an expansion of heart at the sight of suffering or sorrow or need, that we have to be on our guard, lest it work in us merely from a natural goodness without the sacred stamp of grace. This custom then of drawing saints to be our patrons for the year is a happy thought, bearing upon the inward yearning towards others; it is an expression of the loneliness of the human heart, its want of sympathy ; it is also the bond between Heaven and earth. We are not made like the beasts with our eyes level with the ground, tending downwards. "We have a right to invade the unseen world, to choose helpers there, to count upon assistance and comfort and cheering, where there is so much consolation, help, and joy.
A certain number of patrons were chosen for us by our parents without our having a say in the matter. Otliers we ourselves chose at coniinnation, but Avithout any very distinct idea of what we were doing, perhaps. But our patron on Valentine's day can be one of mature deliberation, based upon a natural attraction and admiration, one whose example in the battle-field of life will be a help to us in our hour of trial. The more communion we can have with Heaven the better for us. The more our interests lie above, the less will the chains of earth rivet us to things below. And the chains of earth do bind. They bind in childhood and in youth; in middle manhood and old age. So the spirit that soars upward is the brave spirit, the safest, the happiest, and the strongest. There have been those who, in extreme old age, could show a long list of patrons whom they had honored for a year each with particular devotion, and when the allotted time was over added them to the long list of their predecessors, and invoked them still with the new Valentine of the New Year. What an array there
would be of choice spirits to meet such as these when they came to their Heavenly reward.
To some of us who do not love multiplicity our own namesake may be our perpetual Valentine—the patron given to us at our baptism, or chosen at our confirmation, or at any other solemn occasion.
Let these then become realities to us, living friends and helpers, substantial guardians. The Heavenly patron will never be wanting to His earthy client— of that we may be sure. Let us not be wanting to
him. St. Valentine, pray for us!
Symbols & Link's for St. Valentine's Feast Day
The almond is a symbol for Christ and is often used on this Feast Day which reminds us of the love of Christ. Below are two wonderful tidbits about this symbolism with more resources to follow.
An Excerpt of A prose by Adam of Saint Victor
The Liturgical Year - Christmas Vol. 1 By: Dom Gueranger Imprimatur 1927
Aaron's sapless branch yields leaf and flower and almond: so does the chaste Virgin her Child, the Son of God. Gedeon's fleece bears the dew from heaven; the creature bears the creature's ransome - the Creator. The leaf and flower, the almond and the dew, are mystic emblems of our Saviour's love. Jesus is the leaf that shades us; the sweet flower that regales us; the almond-nut that feeds us; the dew that waters us with heavenly grace. Why is it that the Virgin's delivery should be a stumbling-block to the Jews' Have they forgotten the dry branch of Aaron, how it bore the almonds? Let us once more contemplate the almond-nut; for, viewed in its true light, it is the mystic emblem of him that is the Light. It unites in iteself three things, and all three it gives to man: unction, light and food. Jesus is the almond-nut. The rind is the cross and passion he endured in the Flesh: the shell is his Body - his Flesh and Bones. The Divinity and the sweetness of Jesus, which are sheathed within the Flesh, are figured by the kernel. Jesus is Light to the blind and unction to the sick, and soothing to holy souls.The Marriage of the Blessed Virgin - another writing on the symbolism of Almonds/Almond BranchVisit our Almond Pinterest board for some great recipes! My favorite is the almond covered pretzel
- the prezel being a symbol for praying hands and almonds a symbol for Christ. Perfect for St. Valentine's Day especially this year as it falls during Lent!Multiplying Divine Love with St. Valentine- File Folder Game 9x tablesAdding Divine Love with St. Valentine - File Folder Game 9 addition tablesSaint Valentine Bookmarks and Holy Cards to Download and PrintSt. Valentine brings the Holy Eucharist Coloring PageSaint Valentine Word SearchSaint Valentine Maze Printable
Check out our BLOG entries for the Feast of Saint Valentine
!Visit our St. Valentine Page for MORE printable (coloring pages, cards, etc.)
(C) Sanctus Simplicitus
Our "little" project is growing! We continue to add to our Life of our Savior
and Life of the Soul pages
weekly. There are many, many coloring pages with many more to come. Next week we should have several coloring pages on Our Lord's passion and death with some on Easter to follow. We also added a coloring page for Ash Wednesday on our Lent page
. Make sure to check them all out and keep coming back to see what is new.
March and April's children's planner pages
are also up, including some exciting news to go with them! Starting in May we will be offering a printed planner for sale for both the Maiden's for Mary and Crusader's for Christ planners. That is in addition to the Holy Simplicity planner
in which we will start taking pre-orders for PRINTED VERSIONS! Those pre-orders are expected to start late April or early May. If you have suggestions for any of these planners, things you like, would like to see changed etc. Please leave us a comment at the bottom of this blog post. We are more than happy to accommodate where we can and make these planners easier to use and the most productive for students and teachers.
We pray that you are having a wonderful week and contemplating plans for the Lenten season.
For those of you with children, looking for a way to teach about the life of Our Lord , Holy Communion, First Confession and/or studies for lower elementary on the upcoming Lenten season...
we are working on a little project....
.... hop on over to Life of our Savior and ...
Life of the Soul pages, and let us know what you think.
... the most Holy Name of Jesus.
Today's post comes from the book Catholic Life, Imprimatur 1908, and is listed for the New Year day but has such a lovely description of the Holy Name of Jesus we thought it best to share it, this second day of the New Year when the Church holds the feast of the Holy Name of Jesus.
Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus
"The Holy Name of Jesus justifies the sinner, delights the just, supports those who are tempted, augments grace for the just, and beatifies all that call upon it."
- St. Thomas
The ecclesiastical name for this day is the Feast of the Circumcision. It was instituted in honour of our Lord's receiving, on the eighth day after His birth, the mark of God's covenant with Abraham. The reception of this Sacrament of the Old Law was what distinguished God's chosen people from the rest of mankind, and was a figure of Baptism, which in the New Law distinguishes Christians from pagans and others.
The Divine Child was exempt from the ceremony, which was a remedy for sin, because He was Sanctity itself; but He submitted to it, having taken upon Himself the figure of sinful man, and to teach us respect and obedience to the laws of God and the Church. He also submitted to it in order to show that He was descended from Abraham, and thus fulfilled the
promise made of old to that Patriarch that the Messiah should be born of his race.
On that occasion He received the name of Jesus, which signifies Saviour, in accordance with the command of the angel to the Blessed Virgin and St. Joseph.
On this day we ought to repeat frequently the 'Divine Praises' in reparation for the many times the Holy Name is used irreverently. We can resolve, too, that in future, whenever in the streets or other places, we hear the Holy Name insulted, we will raise our hats and say, "Blessed be the Name of Jesus," and thus send reparation at once to the throne of God. The Litany of Jesus may also be said, with the view of obtaining a great increase of respect, love for, and confidence in Him. We ought also to thank God for conferring on us, without any merit on our part, the grace of Baptism,
conferred, too, at a time when we could not thank Him.
Let us renew our Baptismal vows with great fervour, especially as it happens to be the first day of the new year, and make firm resolutions
to avoid sin and to practice virtue more steadfastly than in the past. In the case of habitual sins we must try to find out the causes and remove them. We can more easily do this if we impress deeply on our minds the unspeakable value of the grace of God.
It was to give or increase it that the Sacraments were instituted. It was to preserve it that the Commandments were ordained, and it is to deprive us of it that the devil watches us and attacks us so frequently and violently.
"Blest Name that is rest and a shelter,
And light to the heart perplexed;
In this life, my last word and dearest,
My rapturous first in the next."
Genesius was a pagan Roman comedian. He was so skilled in his art that he was the idol of the Romans, and always drew an immense multitude of spectators. Public rejoicings were going on, and the Emperor Diocletian came to the capital in great state. Amongst the entertainments prepared for him was a stage performance.
Genesius, who was aware of the hatred of the Prince against the Christians, prepared a mock ceremony to ridicule the Sacrament of Baptism. He made his appearance in the theatre on a bed, pretending to be sick, and asked
to be baptized, so that he might have a happy death.
All this being done in comedy, excited the laughter of the people. Two actors then came forward, one dressed as a priest, the other as an exorcist, and said to Genesius, with mock gravity: 'My child, wherefore didst though send for us?" Genesius, suddenly changed by a miracle of grace, answered seriously: "Because I desire to receive the grace of Jesus
Christ, and by holy regeneration to obtain remission of my sins."
The ceremonies of Baptism were then gone through. When the white robe, the mark of the newly baptized, was put on him, the soldiers took him bound before the Emperor to be interrogated. Diocletian enjoyed the whole thing very much, and, to make the play more real, pretended to be very angry, and asked Genesius: 'Are you a Christian?' Genesius replied in
an inspired tone: "Hear me, O Emperor. Formerly, when I so much as heard the name of Jesus Christ uttered, I trembled with rage. I detested those among my relatives who professed the Christian religion. I studied the rights of Christians solely to scoff at them. But the moment the water of Baptism touched my flesh, my heart was changed, and I answered sincerely to the questions put to me. I saw a troop of angels over me, who read out of a book all the sins I had committed since childhood.Then, having plunged the book into the water, they showed it to me, whiter than snow, the writing being effaced. Do you, then, O mighty Emperor, and you, O Romans, believe with me that Jesus Christ is the Lord, and that He is
worthy of our adoration, and try also to obtain His mercy." The Emperor, equally surprised and irritated, first ordered him to be beaten with rods. Then he handed him over to the perfect Plautius to compel him to sacrifice to the idols. Genesius was stretched on the rack, and had his sides burnt with torches. Many other tortures were tried in vain.
The martyr constantly repeated: "There is no other Lord like Him Who appeared to me. I adore and love Him with my whole soul; though I had a thousand lives to lose, nothing could separate me from Him. Never-no, never shall torments take Jesus from my mouth and heart. I feel the deepest sorrow for all my past errors, and for having commenced so late to
serve Him." Seeing that his eloquence was making an impression on the people, the Emperor ordered his head to be cut off.
Today's Give A Way!
3 The Wonders of the Holy Name
From the Publisher's site
"This booklet is lovingly dedicated to the Sweet Mother of Jesus. No one loves the Name of Jesus as She does. The Holy Name of Jesus is, first of all, an all-powerful prayer. Our Lord Himself solemnly promises that whatever we ask the Father in His Name we shall receive. God never fails to keep His word. When, therefore, we say Jesus let us ask God for all we need with absolute confidence of being heard. 36 page booklet, Impr 1947."
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 King of nations, and their desired One, and the
corner - stone that makest both one; come and save
man whom thou formedst out of slime.
(c) Sanctus Simplicitus 2012
The Liturgical Year - Advent Volume
By: Dom Gueranger Imprimatur 1927
O King of nations! Thou art approaching still nigher to Bethlehem, where Thou art to be born. The journey is almost over, and Thy august Mother, consoled and strengthened by the dear weight she bears, holds an unceasing converse with Thee on the way. She adores Thy divine Majesty; she gives thanks to Thy mercy; she rejoices that she has been chosen for the sublime ministry of being Mother to God. She longs for that happy moment when her eyes shall look upon Thee, and yet she fears it. For, how will she be able to render Thee those services which are due to Thy infinite greatness, she that thinks herself the last of creatures? How will she dare to raise Thee up in her arms, and press Thee to her heart, and feed Thee at her breasts? When she reflects that the hour is now near at hand, in which, tenderness, her heart sinks within her; for, what human heart could bear the intense vehemence of these two affections - the love of such a Mother for her Babe, and the love of such a creature for her God? But Thou supportest her, O Thou the Desired of nations! for Thou, too, longest for that happy birth, which is to give to the earth its Saviour, and to men that corner-stone, which will unite them all into one family. Dearest King! be Thou blessed for all these wonders of Thy power and goodness! Come speedily, we beseech Thee, come and save us, for we are dear to Thee, as creatures that have been formed by Thy divine hands. Yea, come, for Thy creation has grown degenerate; it is lost; death has taken possession of it: take Thou it again into Thy almighty hands, and give it a new creation; save it; for Thou hast not ceased to take pleasure in and love Thine own work.
THE GREAT ANTIPHON IN HONOUR OF CHRIST
O King of peace! that wast born before all ages, come by the golden gate; visit them whom thou hast redeemed, and lead them back to the place whence they fell by sin.
"Let us not speak ill of the Cross, it has been sent to us
to warn us, to detach us from the earth, to lead us to
our end. Let us leave it only to cast ourselves into God.
We have much need of suffering, let us suffer well."
~ Pere de Ravignan ~