|Blue Moon Rising by Ann L. Krumrein|
The moon is a friend for the lonesome to talk to. ~Carl Sandburg
“We cannot know Jesus without becoming involved with him, without betting our lives on him.”The Holy Father said that we need three languages to know Jesus: that of the mind, that of the heart, and that of action.
Dear Lord, help me to choose wisely that I may truly know You -- and knowing You, fully love You with all my heart, soul, strength and mind. Amen.
Harvest Moon in Belfast, Maine by Ann L. Krumrein
"The Feast of the Stigmata of Saint Francis, whom we will soon honor again on his feast of October 4th, is not only to glorify a Saint; it commemorates and signifies something which goes beyond the life of any single man, even one of the greatest of the Church. The God-Man never ceases to live on in His Church, and the reproduction of His own mysteries in this Spouse whom He wants to be similar to Himself, is the explanation of history.
"In the thirteenth century it seemed that charity, whose divine precept many no longer heeded, concentrated in a few souls the fires which had once sufficed to inflame multitudes. Sanctity shone as brilliantly as ever, but the hour for the cooling of the brazier had struck for the peoples. The Church itself says so today in its liturgy, at the Collect: Lord Jesus Christ, when the world was growing cold, You reproduced the sacred marks of Your passion in the body of the most blessed Francis, in order that Your love might also set our hearts afire.' The Spouse of Christ had already begun to experience the long series of social defections among the nations, with their denials, treasons, derision, slaps, spittings in the very praetorium, all of which conclude in the legalized separation of society from its Author. The era of the Passion is advanced; the exaltation of the Holy Cross, which for centuries was triumphant in the eyes of the nations, acquires in the sight of heaven, as the Angels look down upon it, the aspect of an ever closer resemblance with the Spouse to the sufferings of her crucified Beloved.
"Saint Francis, loved today by all who know of him — and few there are who do not — was like precious marble placed before an expert sculptor. The Holy Spirit chose the flesh of the seraph of Assisi to express His divine thought, thus manifesting to the world the very specific direction He intends to give to souls thereafter. This stigmatization offers a first example, a complete image, of the new labor the divine Spirit is meditating — total union, on the very Cross of Christ itself, of the mystical Body with the divine Head. Francis is the one honored by this primacy of choice; but after him the sacred sign will be received by others, who also personify the Church. From this time on, the Stigmata of the Lord Jesus will be at all times visible, here and there on this earth."With what joy and gratitude must St. Francis have received the Stigmata! May he help us to lovingly receive our own share in the Passion of Jesus Christ, our Beloved Lord and Master!
Pope Francis renewed his appeal for peace in Syria and throughout the world on Wednesday, once again inviting Christians of every denomination, believers of every religious tradition and all people of good will to take part in the worldwide fast and vigil of prayer and penance for peace, which he has called for September 7th, the vigil of the Feast of the Nativity of Our Lady, whom we venerate as Queen of Peace. First announced at the Sunday Angelus at the start of the week, many local Churches have already organized their own initiatives to mark the day. The Holy Father especially urged the faithful of Rome and pilgrims to the city to participate in the prayer vigil to be held in St. Peter's Square starting at 7 PM Rome Time and continuing until midnight. The Holy Father concluded, “May a powerful cry for peace go up from every land!”
Below, please find Vatican Radio’s translation of the full text of Pope Francis’ appeal.
"This coming Saturday we will live together a special day of fasting and prayer for peace in Syria, the Middle East, and throughout the world. I renew the invitation to the whole Church to live this day intensely, and even now I express gratitude to the other Christian brethren, to the brethren of other religions and to the men and women of good will who desire to join in this initiative, in places and ways of their own. I especially urge the Roman faithful and pilgrims to participate in the prayer vigil here in St. Peter's Square at 19.00, in order to ask the Lord for the great gift of peace. May a powerful cry for peace go up from every land!"Here in Houston, 7pm Rome Time will be 12 noon our time. You can check the World Clock for further information.
Do not desire crosses except insofar as you have borne those which were offered to you. It is an error to desire martyrdom without having enough courage to bear an insult. The enemy often arouses in us ardent desires for things that are absent and may never come our way. It is to turn our minds away from present objects from which, however small they may be, we could draw great profit. In imagination we fight monsters in Africa. But in fact, due to lack of attention, we allow ourselves to be killed by little serpents on our way. ~St. Francis de Sales
Pray simply. Do not expect to find in your heart any remarkable gift of prayer. Consider yourself unworthy of it--then you will find peace. Use the empty, cold dryness of your prayer as food for your humility. Repeat constantly: "I am not worthy, Lord, I am not worthy!" But say it calmly, without agitation. This humble prayer will be acceptable to God. ~Elder Macarius of Optina
"Humble yourself the more, the greater you are, and you will find mercy in the sight of God." ~Sirach 3:18
"The one who exalts himself shall be humbled and the one who humbles himself shall be exalted." ~Luke 14:11One way to become humble is to humble ourselves. Mother Teresa wrote a "humility list" for her sisters, but we don't have to be religious women or men to profit from it. Putting her suggestions into practice, one by one, sure does help me to be humble. When I get to the end of the list, I simply and humbly go back to the beginning and start all over again. As St. Philip Neri used to pray, "Lord, today is the day I begin!" Deo gratias!