Sunday, August 26, 2012

Let Mary Hold Your Hand

“In dangers, in doubts, in difficulties, think of Mary, call upon Mary. 
Let not her name depart from your lips, never suffer it to leave your heart. 
And that you may more surely obtain the assistance of her prayer, neglect not to walk in her footsteps. With her for guide, you shall never go astray; while invoking her, you shall never lose heart; so long as she is in your mind, you are safe from deception; while she holds your hand, you cannot fall; under her protection you have nothing to fear; if she walks before you, you shall not grow weary; if she shows you favor, you shall reach the goal.” 
                                                                              - St Bernard

I came across this quote last week and was quite moved.  I especially loved the thought of Mary holding our hand as we go through the trials and tribulations of this earthly life.

Prayers that our Blessed Mother shows all of us favor, so we can reach our goal of being with Her in Paradise.

God Bless.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Would You Do This for Your Spouse?

Many of you probably know this story from Bishop Fulton Sheen.

I just came across it this weekend, and figured I'd share it here for those of you that don't know it.  It's an incredible example of what it means to offer your Earthly life and comforts for someone you love.  (When I read what Elizabeth wrote in her journal, I sat there in shock at the pureness and selflessness displayed in her request to our Lord.)

"Just at the turn of the century, there was a woman married in Paris, just a good, ordinary Catholic girl, to an atheist doctor, Dr. Felix Leseur. He attempted to break down the faith of his wife and she reacted and began studying her faith. 

In 1905, she was taken ill and tossed on a bed of constant pain until August 1914. When she was dying, she said to her husband, “Felix, when I am dead, you will become a Catholic and a Dominican priest.”

Elizabeth, you know my sentiments. I’ve sworn hatred of God, I shall live in the hatred and I shall die in it.”

She repeated her words and passed away. 

She died in her husband’s arms at the early age of 47.

Rummaging through her papers, Felix found her will. She wrote:
“In 1905, I asked almighty God to send me sufficient sufferings to purchase your soul. On the day that I die, the price will have been paid. Greater love than this no woman has than she who lay down her life for her husband.”

Dr. Leseur, the atheist, dismissed her will as the fancies of a pious woman. He decided to write a book against Lourdes. He went down to Lourdes to write against Our Lady.

However, as he looked up into the face of the statue of Mary, he received the great gift of faith. So total, so complete was it, that he never had to go through the process of juxtaposition and say, “how will I answer this or that difficulty?”

He saw it all. At once.

The then reigning pontiff was Benedict XV. Then came World War I. Hearing of the conversion of Dr. Leseur, Pope Benedict XV sent for him. Dr. Leseur went in the company of Fr. Jon Vinnea, orator of Notre Dame. Dr. Leseur recounted his conversion and said that he wanted to become a Dominican priest. Holy Father said, “I forbid you. You must remain in the world and repair the harm which you have done.”

The Holy Father then talked to Fr. Vinnea and then again to Dr. Leseur and said:
“I revoke my decision. Whatever Fr. Vinnea tells you to do, you may do.”

In the year 1924, during Lent, I, Fulton J. Sheen, made my retreat in the Dominican monastery in Belgium. Four times each day, and 45 minutes in length, I made my retreat under the spiritual guidance of Father Felix Leseur of the Order of Preachers, Catholic Dominican priest, who told me this story."   

                                                        - Bishop Fulton J. Sheen

God Bless you.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Bread and Diets

Today's first reading about Elijah eating Heaven-sent bread, and Gospel reading about Jesus as the Bread of Life, both made me think of one thing ...

... it's a shame today's world is on such a low-carb diet.

God Bless.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

The Only Miracle in All Four Gospels

Do you know what the only miracle (aside from the Resurrection) to appear in all four Gospels is?

Give up?

It's the multiplication of the loaves and fish!

That fact alone underscores the significance of this beautiful event.  And while I often wonder how it actually happened, and what the Apostles' reactions were as they were experiencing it, the message I always take away from it is very clear.

The small boy had but 5 loaves of bread, and 2 small fish.  Hardly enough to feed a group of 15, let alone 5,000.

But he gave his small gift to Jesus.  

And through Christ it became significantly greater.

It's a wonderful reminder to us all that our gifts and offerings are that much greater when we go through our Savior.

God Bless.