Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

As the vine I have brought forth a pleasant odor: and my flowers are the fruit of honor and riches.

I am the mother of fair love, and of fear, and of knowledge, and of holy hope. In me is all grace of the way and of the truth, in me is all hope of life and of virtue.

Come over to me, all you that desire me, and be filled with my fruits.

For my spirit is sweet above honey, and my inheritance above honey and the honeycomb.

My memory is unto everlasting generations.

They that eat me, shall yet hunger: and they that drink me, shall yet thirst.

He that hearkens to me, shall not be confounded: and they that work by me, shall not sin.

They that explain me shall have life everlasting. 

~Sirach 24: 23-31 (Douay-Rheims translation)

Holy Mary, Mother of God,
thank you for giving us
the blessed fruit of your womb,
your Beloved Son, Jesus!

Monday, July 15, 2013


Ah, how much God loves us! how sweetly He protects and guides us! He wishes us to be entirely His; let us not seek, then, other arms to rest in than those of Providence; let us not cast our looks elsewhere; let us repose our mind on Him alone; let us keep our will united to His, that His and ours may be only one; let us wish sweetly whatever He wishes; let us allow Him to govern us; let us not reflect so much upon ourselves; let us for ever live on the mercy of Providence; all will go well when our soul has no other retreat than in God, and the train of our affairs will succeed more prosperously when He assists us.  Can the child perish who is in the arms of an Almighty Father?  ~St. Francis de Sales

The Father Himself loves you.  ~John 16:27 

Father, how wonderful Your care for us!
Thank You for always holding us close in Your loving arms.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

"O burning mountain"

Red-Eyed Tree Frog

O burning mountain,
O chosen sun,
O perfect moon,
O fathomless well,
O unattainable height,
O unattainable light,
O clearness beyond all measure,
O wisdom without end,
O mercy without all limit,
O strength beyond resistance,
O crown of all majesty,
The humblest thing you created sings your praise.

Mechtild of Magdeburg

Saturday, July 13, 2013

"the grace to weep"

Lord, grant us the grace to weep over our indifference, over the cruelty that is in the world and in ourselves. 

~Pope Francis, 7/12/13 Tweet

Holy Mary, Mother of Sorrows, pray for us!

Friday, July 12, 2013

The Enthusiasm of Jesus

"….Furthermore, He burned to complete His Sacrifice:  'I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how I am constrained until it is accomplished!' (Lk 12:50) 

"If one can put it this way, there was in Jesus something like a sort of enthusiasm for His Sacrifice… 

"Christ thirsted to give His Father that glory which His Father would obtain from Christ's Sacrifice:  'no one jot or tittle shall be lost from the law till all things shall have been accomplished' (Mt 5:18).  He wished to accomplish all things, to the last iota – that is, to the final detail.  When, in His agony, anguish and sorrows pile up in His soul, He feels them so deeply that 'Father,' he says, 'if it is possible, let this cup pass away from me.'  However, He wishes to accomplish the will of His Father to the very end:  'Yet not as I will, but as you will' (Mt 26:39; Mk 14:36; Lk 22:42).  Finally, on Calvary, He completes His immolation and is able to say, before He yields up His last breath, that He has accomplished in its fullness the program His Father has given Him:  'It is consummated!' (Jn 19:30).  This final cry of the Divine Victim upon the cross corresponds to His 'Here I am' at His incarnation in the womb of the Virgin."

"I came to cast fire upon the earth; and would that it were already kindled!"  ~Lk 12:49
Dear Lord, kindle in my heart Your divine enthusiasm for the Father's will and glory.  Amen.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Redemption Through His Blood

In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace which He lavished upon us.  ~Ephesians 1:7-8

Eucharistic Heart of my Jesus,
Whose Blood is the life of my soul,
may it be no longer I who live
 but do Thou alone live in me. 
The Raccolta, #155, I

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

"living sacrifices to God"

"Jesus came on earth as our Master, and He wills that we should learn from Him the lesson of full and entire submission to the will of God. His life was one uninterrupted act of self-aban­donment, beginning with the 'Ecce venio' of the Incarnation, 'Lo, I come to do Thy will,' till the final commendation of His soul on the cross. Like Him, we must yield ourselves as living sacrifices to God, content as far as our will goes to accept health or illness, wealth or poverty, interior peace or the conflict with temptation.  God knows what is best, and He can and will provide the necessary means of sanctification for each of the souls that are so dear to Him, and this thought should help us to cast all our care on Him."  ~Madame Cecilia, Cor Cordium

I will freely sacrifice to You, and will give praise, O God, to Your name: because it is good.  ~Psalm 54(53):8

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

"to be the doxology"

I appeal to you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. ~Romans 12:1

We are not only to sing the doxology, but to be the doxology.  ~Francis A. Schaeffer in No Little People: Sixteen Sermons For the Twentieth Century

Monday, July 8, 2013

New wine, new wineskins...

"And no one puts new wineskins into old wineskins; if he does, the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost, and so are the skins; but new wine is for fresh skins."  ~Mark 2:22

"Being Christian ultimately means, not doing things, but allowing oneself to be renewed by the Holy Spirit -– or, to use the words of Jesus, becoming new wine....  Don’t be afraid of the newness of the Gospel! Don’t be afraid of the newness that the Holy Spirit works in us!

"...Let us ask for the grace of not being afraid of the newness of the Gospel, of not being afraid of the renewal that the Holy Spirit brings, of not being afraid to let go of the passing structures that imprison us. If we are afraid, we know that the Mother is with us. And like children who are a little afraid, let us go to her –- and she, as the ancient antiphon says, -– ‘will protect us with her cloak, with her motherly protection.’"

~Pope Francis, 7/6/13 Homily

Behold, I make all things new!
Revelation 21:5

Saturday, July 6, 2013

"Mary is the Magnificat."

"[Mary] is truly Israel, the servant, the humble handmaid who can sing the song of faith and joy, the song of the servant that will be fulfilled in Jesus, her Son....  Luke says with simplicity, 'And Mary said.'  Surely Mary lived the song of the servant and shared it with Elizabeth and Zechariah.  But it is not merely a song in one great peak experience.  It is the word and prayer displayed so lavishly by the totality of her life, thoughts, desires, and actions.  In the hours of joy and in the moments of suffering, and even under the Cross, Mary's life will sing the song of the servant.  Mary is the Magnificat.  The apostolic community finds in this great song of praise a perfect blend of the life and the role of Mary in the Church."  Fr. Bernhard Häring, C.SS.R.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Jesus is our teacher...

"Jesus is more than a friend. He is a teacher of truth and life who shows us the way that leads to happiness." ~Pope Francis, 7/5/13 Tweet

They shall not hunger, nor thirst, neither shall the heat nor the sun strike them: for he that is merciful to them, shall be their shepherd, and at the fountains of waters he shall give them drink. ~Isaiah 49:10

Teach me, dear Lord -- and make me teachable, please!  Amen.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy Fourth of July!

Ave Maria! On this glorious Fourth of July, I've been profusely thanking God for the many freedoms we Americans are so blessed to have. The list is endless, and so is my gratitude.

Today I've also been especially honoring and praying for the "heroes proved / In liberating strife" whom Katharine Lee Bates immortalized in her much-loved patriotic song "America the Beautiful": those brave men and women with "pilgrim feet, / Whose stern, impassioned stress / A thoroughfare for freedom beat / Across the wilderness!" These individuals lived boldly and freely, utterly convinced of the self-evident truths that "that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." Rightly are they described as noble persons "Who more than self their country loved, / And mercy more than life." They number among us even today, some even risking their lives to keep alive the "patriot dream / That sees beyond the years" as they work tirelessly for the true brotherhood that has its beginning and end in our Loving Creator. I salute each one of them! And I ask God to shed His grace on them until they leave this world for a better country, the heavenly homeland He has prepared for us, the city to come, "Undimmed by human tears!" (cf. Hebrews 11:16 and 13:14)
Father of all nations and ages,
we recall the day when our country
claimed its place among the family of nations;
for what has been achieved we give you thanks,
for the work that still remains we ask your help,
and as you have called us from many peoples to be one nation,
grant that, under your providence,
our country may share your blessings
with all the peoples of the earth.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
~The Roman Missal, Collect for Independence Day

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Faith, a source of joy

Finally, this faith, coming to completion and expressing itself by love, is for us a source of joy.  Our Lord said:  "Blessed are they who have not seen, and yet have believed" (John 20:29).  He said these words, not for His disciples, but for us.  And why is it, then, that Our Lord proclaims "blessed" those who believe in Him?  Faith is a source of joy, because it makes us share in the knowledge of Christ.  He is the Eternal Word who has told us the Divine secrets:  "It is the only Son," in the heart's embrace of the Father, "who has made Him known" (John 1:18).  In believing what He tells us, we have the same knowledge as He.  Faith is a source of joy because it is a source of light.  ~Bl. Columba Marmion in Christ, the Life of the Soul

My spirit rejoices in God my Savior.  ~Luke 1:47

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Walking in faith

“Remain steadfast in the journey of faith, with firm hope in the Lord. This is the secret of our journey!” 
~Pope Francis, 4/28/13

"Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful."  ~Hebrews 10:23

So I will give you thanks for your faithful love, my God.  ~Psalm 71(70):22