The month of February is dedicated to the Holy Family. This piece is taken from Catholic Life Impr. 1908
"And He went down to Nazareth, and was subject to them."
- St. Luke 11.51
God the Son became man not only to redeem us, but also to be our model; and as the family circle is the source whence future generations are supplied, He, in union with His Blessed Mother and St. Joseph, made the house at Nazareth the model for future homes.
The foundation of society is authority, properly used and obeyed; and this principle received its consecration in the perfect obedience of the Man-God, Who for love of us was obedient to two of His own creatures. Our Lady, too, despite her superiority to St. Joseph, obeyed his least wish. On such a foundation it can be easily understood how a perfect superstructure of domestic virtues and happiness was erected.
Heavenly peace reigned; harmonious order prevailed; pious conversation intervened between the labours of the workshop and the times allotted to prayer; a godlike love pervaded all; and kindness, supported by mutual forbearance and self-denial, completed the cup of domestic happiness. "Fathers of families have in Joseph a most perfect model of watchfulness and paternal care; mothers have in the Virgin Mother of God the most beautiful and admirable example of love, modesty, humility, and perfect faith; whilst children have in Jesus, who was subject to them, the Divine example of obedience which they should admire, worship, and imitate" (Leo XIII.).
All, then, during this month, ought to compare their lives with those at Nazareth, and see what can be done to make our homes more like that of the Holy Family - what we ought to correct in our manners, temper, or words; what we can do to make the family reunions more happy, and thus remove the desire of seeking happiness elsewhere.
A practical help will be to join the Association of the Holy Family, so richly indulgenced, and so necessary in these times, when clubs and other social gatherings are threatening to take the place of, or to destroy, domestic happiness.
"Deeds no grander, ways no stranger,
Simple duties as they came,
Made their lives so like all others
That they almost seemed the same.
But below that even surface
Love was welling to the brim,
Turning every thought to Jesus,
Bearing every pain for Him."
Example- Sir Thomas More's Family
More's family was a large one. It consisted of his old father, his wife, his daughter Margaret and her husband, William Roper, his daughters Elizabeth and Cecily, his only son John, and his step-daughter Alice Middleton and her husband; also Giles Heron, his ward, who afterwards married Elizabeth More, Margaret Giggs, an orphan relative, whom he brought up as one of his own children, and her husband John Clement.
His great-grandson says: "It might well be said of him what the Queen of Sheba said of Solomon: "Blessed art thou; and blessed be thy Lord God; and blessed are all they that attend and wait on thee" (3 Kings x. 8,9). For no doubt there was the spirit of God in that family, where every one was busied about something or other...as it were in some religious house, all chaste, all courteous, all devout." Erasmus says: "His wife, who excels in good sense and experience rather than learning, governs the little company with wonderful tact, assigning to each a task, and requiring its performance, allowing no one to be idle or to be occupied in trifles."
Special Happenings & New Downloads for February
ST. BLAISÉ AND BLESSING THROATS
The feast of St. Blaise, February 3, is the day to receive the Blessing of Throats. St. Blaise was a physician who was made Bishop to Sebaste in Armenia. Bishop or not, he withdrew to a cave and soon had a reputation for
curing both men and beasts. It is told that if the animals found him at prayer they would wait patiently for him to finish. Under the emperor Lisinius, Agricola, governor of Cappadocia, came to Sebaste to persecute the Christians. Sending his hunters out in quest of wild beasts for the arena, they were startled to find at the mouth of the cave on Mount Argues, wolves, tigers, bears and lions waiting for Blaise to finish his
prayers. They promptly arrested him and tried without success to make him apostatize. While he was in prison the poor and the sick and the lame continued to come to him. The most familiar of the events surrounding him appear to have happened at this time. He returned to a poor woman the pig which a wolf had stolen, and he cured the little child with the fish bone caught in his throat from this miracle grew his great reputation as a healer of throats. According to the Acts of his martyrdom (considered somewhat legendary), after horrible torments he was
thrown into a lake upon which he proceeded to walk, inviting his tormentors to join him. They took up the challenge and were drowned to the last man! Told by an angel to return to dry land and receive martyrdom, he did, and was promptly beheaded on the shore, and of course went straight to Heaven. Special candles are blessed to be used in the Blessing of Throats. In this blessing of candles we find mention of his power of healing throats, granted him at his request as he was dying, it is said . . . . . . . In virtue of which, among other gifts, thou didst bestow on him the prerogative - of healing all ailments of the throat. Thus we beg thy Majesty that, overlooking our guilt, and considering only his merits and intercession, thou wouldst deign to bless and sanctify and bestow thy grace on these candles. Let all Christians of good faith whose necks are touched with them be healed of every malady of the throat, and being restored in health and cheer, let them return thanks in thy Holy Church, and give praise to thy wondrous name which is blessed forever. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in unity of the Holy Spirit, God, eternally. Amen.
When we go to church to have our throats blessed, this is what the priest says as he touches our throats with the crossed candles:
“Through the intercession of Saint Blaise, Bishop and Martyr, may God deliver you from sickness of the throat, and from every other evil; in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” St. Blaise is one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers or Auxiliary Saints, the others being St. George, St. Erasmus, St. Pantaleon, St. Vitus, St. Christopher, St. Denis, St. Cyriac, St. Achatius, St. Eustache, St. Giles, St. Margaret, St. Barbara, and St. Catherine. So we greet him on his feast day and give thanks to God for his blessing. And I don‟t suppose he‟d be cross if we said that really and truly this Blessing of Throats might well be termed the liturgical antibiotic. (taken from: “The Year and Our Children,” Imprimatur 1956)
This weeks 5 Meatless Recipes!
Lives of the Saints, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. 1894
February 3.—ST. BLASE, Bishop and Martyr.
ST. BLASE devoted the earlier years of his life to the study of philosophy, and afterwards became a physician. In the practice of his profession he saw so much of the miseries of life and the hollowness of worldly pleasures, that he resolved to spend the rest of his days in the service of God, and from being a healer of bodily ailments to be- come a physician of souls. The Bishop of Sebaste, in Armenia, having died, our Saint, much to the gratification of the inhabitants of that city, was appointed to succeed him. St. Blase at once began to instruct his people as much by his example as by his words, and the great virtues and sanctity of this servant of God were attested by many miracles. From all parts the people came flocking to him for the cure of bodily and spiritual ills. Agricolaus, Governor of Cappadocia and the Lesser Armenia, having begun a persecution by order of the Emperor Licinius, our Saint was seized and hurried off to prison. While on his way there, a distracted mother, whose only child was dying of a throat disease, threw herself at the feet of St. Blase and implored his intercession. Touched at her grief, the Saint offered up his prayers, and the child was cured; and since that time his aid has often been effectually solicited in cases of a similar disease. Refusing to worship the false gods of the heathens, St. Blase was first scourged; his body was then torn with hooks, and finally he was beheaded in the year 316.
Reflection.—There is no sacrifice which, by the aid of grace, human nature is not capable of accomplishing. When St. Paul complained to God of the violence of the temptation, God answered, "My grace is sufficient for thee, for power is made perfect in infirmity."
St. Blaise Coloring Page
St. Blaise File Folder Games, free to download. 2's for adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing!
Read about the Blessing of Throats in the St. Catherine Academy Newsletter
Our wonderful friends, the Willsons, have put out another great newsletter as part of their homeschool project.
This month you will find:
* Coloring pages for the Holy Family, St. Blaise & Our Lady of Lourdes
* The Purification
*St. Blaise and the Blessing of Throats
*Lost in the Temple
*A story called Two Good Friends
* The Blessing of Persons
May you enjoy and have a wonderful February!! God bless!