Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Bishop Nicholas Dimarzio Lifts Obligation to attend Mass on All Saints Day, November 1, 2012


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION: Stefanie Gutierrez 917-587-2784
Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio has lifted the obligation to attend mass on all saints day, November 1, 2012.
This was said in a statement regarding the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy and All Saints Day:
“Hurricane Sandy has left her trail of death and destruction across our City and region. We all pray first and foremost for our fellow New Yorkers and their families who perished. While things may always be replaced, we are all mindful of how important our homes are in our lives and so our thoughts and prayers turn to those whose property was destroyed or damaged.
“It goes without saying that the obligation to attend Mass today and tomorrow for All Saints Day has been lifted.
“In addition, I am asking all our parishes to take up a second collection to assist those who are in distress as a result of this natural disaster. Most of our families throughout Brooklyn and Queens are middle-class or working poor. All are so incredibly generous to those suffering in other parts of our country and world. Now we need to come together to assist our neighbors.”

From These Stone Walls: Of Saints and Souls and Earthly Woes: “Viva Cristo Rey!” by Fr. Gordon MacRae

Many people I know have lost a loved one – a family member or friend who is painfully missed. A “Pastoral Note” in the official Order of Prayer for the Liturgy of the Hours dedicates the entire month of November, and especially All Souls Day, to pray for our departed brothers and sisters. In “And Death’s Dark Shadow Put to Flight,” an Advent post a few years ago, I wrote of the sting of death, and the story of how one particular friend’s tragic death stung very deeply.

But there is far more to the death of loved ones than its sting. Last year at this time I wrote a post that helped some readers explore a dimension of death they had not considered. It focused not only on the sense of loss that accompanies the deaths of those we love, but also on the link we still share with them. It gave meaning to that “Holy Longing” that extends beyond death – for them and for us – and suggested a way to live in a continuity of relationship with those who have died. The All Souls Day Commemoration in the Roman Missal also describes this relationship:

“The Church, after celebrating the Feast of All Saints, prays for all who in the purifying suffering of purgatory await the day when they will join in their company. The celebration of the Mass, which re-enacts the sacrifice of Calvary, has always been the principal means by which the Church fulfills the great commandment of charity toward the dead. Even after death, links with our fellow travelers are not broken.”

That waiting, and our sometimes excruciatingly painful experience of loss, is “The Holy Longing.” The people we have loved and lost are not really lost. They are still our family, our friends, and our fellow travelers, and we shouldn’t travel with them in silence. The month of November is a time to restore this “link with our fellow travelers.” If you know others who have suffered the deaths of family and friends, please share with them a link to “The Holy Longing: An All Souls Day Spark for Broken Hearts.”


I’ve written many times about the saints who inspire us on this arduous path behind These Stone Walls. The posts that come most immediately to mind are “The Paradox of Suffering: An Invitation from Saint Maximilian Kolbe,” and more recently, “ ‘I Am a Mystery to Myself ‘: The Last Days of Padre Pio.” Saint Maximilian Kolbe and Saint Padre Pio inspire me not because I have so much in common with them, but because I have so little. I am not at all like them, but I came to know them because I was drawn to the ways they faced and coped with adversity in their lives on Earth.

Patron saints really are advocates in Heaven, but the story is bigger than that. To have patron saints means something deeper than just hoping to share in the graces for which they suffered. It means to be in a relationship with them as fellow travelers. They can advocate not only for us, but for the souls of those we entrust to their intercession. In the Presence of God, they are more like a lens for us, and not dispensers of grace in their own right. The Protestant critique that Catholics “pray to saints” has it all wrong.

To be in a relationship with patron saints means much more than just waiting for their help in times of need. I have learned a few humbling things this year about the dynamics of a relationship with Saints Maximilian Kolbe and Padre Pio. I have tried to consciously cope with painful things the way they did, and over time they opened my eyes about what it means to have their advocacy. It’s an advocacy I would not need if I were even remotely like them. It’s an advocacy I need very much, and can no longer live without.

I don’t think we choose the saints who will be our patrons and advocates in Heaven. I think they choose us. In ways both subtle and profound, they interject their presence in our lives. I came into this prison over 18 years ago knowing little to nothing of Saints Maximilian Kolbe and Padre Pio. But in multiple posts on These Stone Walls I’ve written of how they made their presence here known. And in that process, I’ve learned a lot about why they’re now in my life. It is not because they look upon me and see their own paths. It’s because they look upon me and see how much and how easily I stray from their paths.

One day earlier this month, I discovered something about the intervention of these saints that is at the same time humbling and deeply consoling. It’s consoling because it affirms for me that these modern saints have made themselves a part of what I must bear each day. It’s humbling because that fact requires shedding all my notions that their intercession means a rescue from the crosses I’d just as soon not carry.

For the last year or so in prison, I’ve had to live with something that’s very painful – physically very painful – and sometimes so intensely so that I can focus on little else. In prison, there are not many ways to escape from pain. I can purchase some over-the-counter ibuprophen in the prison commissary, but that’s sort of like fighting a raging forest fire with bottled water. It’s not very effective.

Over several days last month, my relentless pain flared up and got the better of me, and I became depressed. There aren’t many ways to escape depression in prison either. The combination of nagging pain and depression began to interfere with everything I was doing, and others started to notice. The daily barrage of foul language and constantly loud prison noise that I’ve heard non-stop for over 18 years suddenly had the effect of a rough rasp being dragged across the surface of my brain. If you’ve ever suffered from acute migraines, you know exactly what I mean.

So one night, I asked Saint Padre Pio to intercede that I might be delivered from this awful nagging pain. I fell off to sleep actually feeling a little hopeful, but it was not to be. The next morning I awoke to discover my cross of pain even heavier than the night before.

Then suddenly, as has been known to happen of late, light finally dawned once again upon Marblehead. I suddenly became aware that I had just asked Padre Pio – a soul who in life bore the penetrating pain of the wounds of Christ without relief for fifty years – to nudge the Lord to free me from my pain. What was I thinking?! That awareness was a more painful moment than the pain of any migraine I’ve ever had to bear.

So for now, at least, I’ll have to live with this pain, but I’m no longer depressed about it. Situational depression, I have learned, comes when you expect an outcome other than the one you have. I no longer expect Padre Pio to rescue me from my pain, so I’m no longer depressed. I now see that my relationship with him isn’t going to be based upon being pain free. It’s going to be what it was initially, and what I had allowed to lapse. It’s the example of how he coped with suffering by turning himself over to grace, and by making an offering of what he suffered.

A rescue would sure be nice, but his example is, in the long run, a lot more effective. I know myself. If I awake tomorrow and this pain is gone forever, I will thank Saint Padre Pio. Then just as soon as my next cross comes my way – as I once described in “A Shower of Roses” – I will begin to doubt that Saint Padre Pio had anything to do with my release.

His example, on the other hand, is something I can learn from, and emulate. The truth is that few, if any, of the saints we revere were themselves rescued from what they suffered and endured in this life. We do not seek their intercession because they were rescued. We seek their intercession because they bore all for Christ. They bore their own suffering as though it were a shield of honor.


This was one of Pornchai’s “upside down” questions one night last week. I call them “upside down” questions because as I lay in my bunk reading late at night, his head pops down from the upper bunk so he is upside down as he asks the question. “When people pray to saints,” Pornchai asked last week, “do they really expect a miracle?” I asked for an example, and he said, “Should you or I ask Saint Maximilian Kolbe for a happy ending when he didn’t have one himself?”

I wonder if Pornchai knows how incredibly irritating it is when he stumbles spontaneously upon a spiritual truth that I just spent months working out in my own soul. Pornchai’s insight is true, but it’s an inconvenient truth – inconvenient by Earthly hopes, anyway. The truth about Auschwitz was that all hope for rescue was the first hope to die among any of its occupants. As Maximilian Kolbe lay in that Auschwitz bunker chained to, but outliving, his fellow prisoners being slowly starved to death, did he expect to be rescued?

All available evidence says otherwise. Father Maximilian Kolbe led his fellow sufferers into and through a death that robbed their Nazi persecutors of the power and meaning they intended of that obscene gesture. How ironic would it be for me to now place my hope for rescue from an unjust and uncomfortable imprisonment at the feet of Saint Maximilian Kolbe? Just having such an expectation is more humiliating than prison itself. Devotion to Saint Maximilian Kolbe helps us face prison bravely. It doesn’t deliver us from prison walls, but rather from their power to stifle our souls.
I know exactly what brought about Pornchai’s question. Each weekend when there are no programs and few activities in prison, DVD films are broadcast on a closed circuit in-house television channel. Thanks to a TSW reader, a DVD of the soul-stirring film, “For Greater Glory” was donated to the prison. That evening we were able to watch “For Greater Glory.” It was an hour or two after viewing this film that Pornchai asked his “upside-down” question.

For Greater Glory” is one of the most stunning and compelling films of this decade. You must not miss it. It’s the historically accurate story of the Cristero War in Mexico in 1926. Academy Award nominee Andy Garcia portrays General Enrique Gorostieta Delarde in a riveting performance as the leader of Mexico’s citizen rebellion against the efforts of a socialist regime to diminish and then eradicate religious liberty and public expressions of Christianity, especially Catholic faith.

If you haven’t seen “For Greater Glory,” I urge you to do so. I especially urge you to see it before drawing any conclusions about the importance of the issue of religious liberty now facing Americans and all of Western Culture in an upcoming Presidential election.

“For Greater Glory” is an entirely true account, and portrays well the slippery slope from a government that tramples upon religious freedom to the actual persecution and public executions of priests and devout Catholics. If you think it couldn’t happen here, think again. It couldn’t happen in Mexico either, but it did!

The real star of this film – and I warn you, it will break your heart – is the heroic soul of young Jose Luis Sanchez del Rio, a teen whose commitment to Christ and his faith results in horrible torment and torture. If this film were solely the creation of Hollywood, there would have been a happy ending. Jose would have been rescued to live happily ever after. It isn’t Hollywood, however; it’s real. Jose’s final tortured scream of “Viva Cristo Rey!” is something I will remember forever.

I cried, finally, at the end as I read in the film’s postscript that Jose Luis Sanchez del Rio was beatified as a martyr by Pope Benedict XVI in 2005. Jose’s final “Viva Cristo Rey!” echoes across the century, across all of North America, across the globe, to empower a quest for freedom that can be found only where young Jose found it.

“Viva Cristo Rey!”

[Video] Pope Benedict's General Prayer Intention for November

apostleshipofprayer has uploaded Ministers of the Gospel.

Ministers of the Gospel
Fr. Kubicki reflects on Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for November 2012.

Photos by Globovisin, Luigi de Guzman, John M (jsmjr), Jerome Stevenson, Youth Ministry Office (St. Louis), Roger Smith, Lawrence OP, Quinn Dombrowski, Cormac70, Jim Forest, GeekCatholic

EWTN-Wings Newsletter


All Saints Day Marathon Includes New Patron for Married Couples
Also This Week, The Dogma of Purgatory Explained
By Michelle Laque Johnson

We are so blessed as Catholics to know that we have friends in heaven, including our loved ones, to whom we can converse and pray! This is especially comforting to those of us who have lost someone dear to us. Many other Christians do not believe this – and that makes the grief they feel after losing a loved one even more terrible. That's also why we, as Catholics, should shout our belief in the Communion of Saints from the rooftops – and why we should take great joy in celebrating our friends in heaven on Nov. 1, All Saints Day, and our friends in purgatory on Nov. 2, All Souls Day.

EWTN's All Saints Day Marathon offers viewers a fabulous way to do just that. Below is our lineup, which includes a brand new saint-to-be for married couples: Blessed Elizabeth Canori Mora. Bob and Penny Lord do a wonderful job of sharing her life with you. Don't miss "Super Saints" at 1:30 p.m. ET, Thursday, Nov. 1.

Here's the rest of our inspiring lineup: (Unless otherwise noted, all programs air on Thursday, Nov. 1.)

SAINT GIANNA BERETTA MOLLA: A MODERN DAY HERO OF DIVINE LOVE: Covers her parents' background, her childhood in Italy in the 1930's, and later her role as a physician, wife and mother. Airs 1:30 a.m. ET.

SAINT MARIANA OF JESUS: Priests and religious offer their insights on the life of this Ecuadorean mystic, who was blessed with many spiritual gifts and graces. Airs 2 a.m. ET.

THE CROWN OF THE AVENTINE: Father Allan White, OP gives an in-depth tour of the Basilica of Santa Sabina, the Dominican Mother House in Rome, and speaks of its connection with the order's founder, St. Dominic, as well as its place in the spiritual lives of saints past and present. Airs 3 a.m. ET.

ST. BERNADETTE OF LOURDES: A cast of more than 160 Catholic children tell the story of this poor, humble, 14-year-old girl from a village in the south of France, whose visions in 1858 of a "Beautiful Lady" would forever change the lives of countless people. Airs 3:30 a.m. ET.

NARCISA DE JESUS: Explores the life and spirituality of this laywoman, who lived a life of intense prayer, austerity, and mortification. Airs 6:30 a.m. ET.

ALL SAINTS MASS FROM EWTN: The Franciscan Missionaries of the Eternal Word celebrate the Mass of All Saints, from Our Lady of the Angels Chapel in Irondale, Ala. Airs live at 8 a.m. ET, with an encore at 6:30 p.m. ET.

LA NOTTE DEL PROFETA: (The Night of the Prophet): The life story of Padre Pio de Pietrelcina, the priest who received the stigmata early in his priesthood and bore the wounds for 50 years. A reporter travels to San Giovani Rotondo and interviews those who were closest to him. Airs 10 a.m. ET.

SOLEMN MASS OF ALL SAINTS: From the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. Airs 12 p.m. ET (noon), with an encore at midnight ET.

ST. EDMUND CAMPION: Learn of the life, mission and death of this English Jesuit and martyr. Follow the journey of a man with a mission to minister to the persecuted Catholics of Elizabethan England. Airs 2 p.m. ET.

ALL SAINTS CELEBRATION WITH FR. FOX & FRIENDS: Father Robert Fox celebrates the Feast of All Saints Day, by discussing the lives of various saints with children dressed up as their favorite saint. Airs 5 p.m. ET.

AN UNCOMMON KINDNESS: THE FATHER DAMIEN STORY: The life and mission of the famous "leper priest." on the island of Molokai, Hawaii. This saint, known as a "martyr of charity,” would later die of this same disease. Airs 5:30 p.m. ET.

OUR LADY OF FATIMA: A history of Our Lady's appearances to three poor shepherd children in Fatima, and the messages of prayer and penance for the salvation of souls which the six apparitions stressed. Filmed on location in Portugal. Airs 11 p.m. ET.

GIVING GOD THE LOVE WE SHOULD: Why the Church believes Total Consecration to Jesus Through Mary is one of the most important ways to fulfill your life’s purpose, which is to become a saint! Airs 3 a.m. ET, Friday, Nov. 2.

ALL SOULS MASS FROM EWTN: The Franciscan Missionaries of the Eternal Word celebrate The Mass of All Souls from Our Lady of the Angels Chapel in Irondale, Ala. Airs live at 8 a.m. ET, Friday, Nov. 2, with encores at noon ET, 6:30 p.m. ET, and midnight ET.

PURGATORY: THE DOGMA EXPLORED (Mary and Purgatory): Our Lady's role is to help encourage Christ's work as an associate of Christ. As our Mother, she is a constant link between the Communion of Saints, the Triumphant in Heaven, the Church Militant on earth and the Suffering Church in Purgatory. Airs 1:30 p.m. ET, Friday, Nov. 2.

BAKHITA: Born into poverty, sold into slavery, abused, isolated, treated as property. This was the life of Josephine Bakhita. But hers is also a story of hope, which shows how the power of love and God's grace prevail. Witness the life of a slave who would become a Catholic, a nun and a saint of the Church. Part 1 airs 8 p.m. ET, Saturday, Nov. 3 and 2 p.m. ET, Wednesday, Nov. 7. Part 2 airs 8 p.m. ET, Saturday, Nov. 10 and 2 p.m. ET, Wednesday, Nov. 14.

God bless Family!

[Video] Pope Benedict's November Mission Intention

apostleshipofprayer has uploaded Pilgrim Church.

Pilgrim Church
Fr. Kubicki reflects on Pope Benedict's mission intention for November 2012.

Photos by Pamenutius, Buster8079, Jim Forest, Vishkal Kapoor, Kilgub, Catholic Church (England and Wales), Fergal of Claddagh, Liz West

The Sistine Chapel Last Judgment Contain an Encoded Image of the Face of the Man of the Shroud

The Sistine Chapel Last Judgment and Ceiling Frescoes Contain an Encoded Image of the Face of the Man of the Shroud -- 500 Years Later

RALEIGH, N.C., Oct. 31, 2012 /Christian Newswire/ -- Investigative researcher, Philip E. Dayvault, of Raleigh, NC, discovered in 2003 that the Last Judgment fresco and a portion of the Ceiling fresco by Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel contain the encoded, and "hidden in plain view," image of the face of the Man of the Shroud of Turin, the traditional burial cloth of Jesus Christ. This forensic conclusion is based on distinctive pattern recognition, the detection of identifying individual characteristics and a progressive overlay comparison of both images. It is also concluded, based on abundant forensic circumstantial, documentary and physical evidence, and coupled with logic and reason, that Michelangelo unknowingly painted the encoded image within the Sistine Chapel, and which contains individual characteristics consistent with those from the Shroud face. Michelangelo never saw the encoded only became observable with the advent of photography in the early 1800's; and then specifically with the first photograph of the Shroud taken in 1898 by Seconda Pia! However, exactly how the encoded image was made remains unknown. This new data is being released to commemorate the 500th-year anniversary of Michelangelo's completion of the ineffable Ceiling in the Sistine Chapel on October 31, 1512, and also the presentation of the Ceiling to the people of Rome, and ultimately to the world, on November 1, 1512, All Saints Day. 

Importantly, the two frescoes were painted at different times in history. The Ceiling, (not shown in this photo), extending down to the top of the "eye brows," was painted from 1508 to 1512; and the Last Judgment on the Altar Wall, depicting "the face" from the eyes-down, was painted from 1535 to 1541. During the interim years, there were three different popes, each of whom could have commissioned anyone to paint the Altar Wall. Michelangelo was in such pain and agony from painting the Ceiling that he didn't "know" if he would be alive the next day, much less, 23 years in the future. 

Dayvault, a former Special Agent and Physical Science Technician with the FBI, utilized the preferred and scientifically accepted forensic principles and methodologies for facial review and identification. This research involved painstaking comparisons and iterations of the two images. Slight scaling of the Shroud Face was required to accommodate for the parallax, focal distance and lens variations present in each available Sistine Chapel photograph. This incredible image, shown below via a Progressive Overlay Comparison, has been critically reviewed by several Shroud colleagues and a forensic expert who concur with Dayvault's conclusions. Some of the numerous individual features include the "Epsilon-like," or "reversed-3," bloodstain image around Jonah (not depicted in this photo), the off-centered bifurcated beard, the eye orbits, the circular cheek wound, unique chin markings, etc. 

For further information, please visit, or click the link below to view the ENCODED article,


Mary TV Daily Reflection 10/31/2012


 (c)Sue Kathman 2008  



October 31, 2012


Dear Family of Mary!


"Dear children! Today I call you to pray for my intentions. Renew fasting and prayer because Satan is cunning and attracts many hearts to sin and perdition. I call you, little children, to holiness and to live in grace. Adore my Son so that He may fill you with His peace and love for which you yearn. Thank you for having responded to my call." (October 25, 2012)


Renew fasting! Today is a fast day, according to Our Lady's desires in Medjugorje! She asks us to fast on Wednesday's and Friday's. So today, let's renew fasting! Let's honestly approach Our Lord, and in His presence, ask to receive the grace to fast, the grace to enter into the spirit of fasting, the call of love!


Fr. Slavko wrote a beautiful prayer for fast days, found in his book Be Similar to My Heart:


Father in Heaven, today I decide to fast. In doing so, I do not despise Your creatures. I do not renounce them; I only want to rediscover their value. I decide for fasting because Your prophets used to fast, because Jesus Christ fasted and so did His apostles and disciples. I especially decide for fasting because Your servant Mary, fasted too.


Father, I present this day of fasting to You. Through fasting I want to listen to and live Your word more. I want, during this day, to learn to be turned more toward You, in spite of the things that surround me.


I present this fast for PEACE IN THE WORLD. I pray to You for all those who are in conflict because they have become blind through what they possess. Father, open our eyes, through fasting, to what You give us, to what we have! I am also sorry for the blindness that has taken hold of my senses so that I do not give thanks for the goods I have.


Through this fast cleanse me of all bad habits and calm my passions, and let the virtues increase in me! Let the depth of my soul open to Your grace through this fast so that it may totally affect and cleanse me!


Mother Mary, pray for me! Let every evil and Satan's temptations keep away from me today through your intercession and through the power of Your protection! Teach me, Mary, to fast and to pray that day after day I may become increasingly similar to You and Your Son, Jesus Christ, in the Holy Spirit! Amen. (Fr. Slavko Barbaric, O.F.M. Be Similar to My Heart. p. 33-34)


May our fasts be filled with grace today!


In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!

Cathy Nolan

©Mary TV 2012



  The path to Podbrdo

 (c)Sue Kathman 2008

The path to Podbrdo 


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

[Video] Fr. Jerzy Popiełuszko: A martyr who fought against communism

romereports has uploaded Documentary on Fr. Jerzy Popiełuszko: A martyr who fought against communism.

Documentary on Fr. Jerzy Popiełuszko: A martyr who fought against communism During the 1970's when the communist regime was in full swing in Poland, a priest decided to speak out for freedom, democracy and human rights. He became a sort of spiritual director for many workers and eventually became one of the leaders of a workers union called 'Solidarity.' He was so outspoken that his homilies were even transmitted on a radio station that opposed the communist regime. His name was Jerzy Popieluszko.

‘The only thing that matters is to be a saint’ By Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M., Cap

By Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M., Cap. *

A friend of mine quipped recently that the real religion of Americans has nothing to do with churches or synagogues. Our “real” religion is politics and the juggling for power it involves. He was being humorous. But as I write these words in late October, and we head into the final days of another, uniquely important, presidential election, his words don’t seem quite so funny.

In the heat of ugly political conflicts, we can easily lose sight of our real vocation as Christians: holiness. We’re called to be in the world but not of the world. Powers and nations – including our own – sooner or later pass away. God’s word does not pass away. Neither does the witness of the holy men and women we call saints, and whose memory we celebrate on All Saints Day and throughout the month of November.

Politics is important. But in the end, all of the passion, all of the egos and even all of the issues in this election will fade. In the end, as the great French Catholic writer Leon Bloy once said, the only thing that matters is to be a saint.

I remembered Bloy’s words in a vivid way on October 21 as I took part in the canonization of Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha. Kateri – known around the world as the “Lily of the Mohawks” and now our nation’s first Native American saint – was born in 1656 and orphaned soon after by smallpox. She was raised by relatives who hated Christianity because of the arrogance and brutality of French colonists and the diseases they brought with them. But something in the beauty of the Gospel touched Kateri’s heart.

At the age of 18, she began instruction in the Catholic faith in secret. Her relatives eventually relented and allowed her to be baptized. But she suffered rough treatment and intense ridicule from her own people, and constant health problems. Throughout her short life she tended to the elderly and sick, taught the faith to children, and was known for her love of Mary and the Eucharist. She died at 24, in 1680. Her last words were “Jesus, Mary, I love you.”

Kateri Tekakwitha’s canonization has been longed for by the American Indian community for many, many decades. As a member of the Potawatomi tribe myself, I grew up praying to her and asking for her intercession – and waiting for the Universal Church to someday celebrate the purity of her witness. Her life embodied a simple love for Jesus and his cross; a profound affection for her Native American community; and a heroic fidelity, humility and innocence.

One of the greatest issues for Native Americans and other ethnic communities in the Church today is inculturation, the process by which the Gospel becomes an integral part of a people’s soul and way of life. Blessed Pope John Paul II once said that whenever a new culture meets the Gospel in an authentic way, three things happen: The culture itself is purified; the gifts of the culture are brought into the life of the Church; and, as a result, both the culture and the Church are made stronger and more beautiful.

Kateri and saints like her are perfect examples of true inculturation. By their lives of holiness, their cultures are purified and enriched, and through their holiness, the Church is made stronger and more glorious in her diversity.

Today, the Native American Catholic community and the whole Church thank God for the gift of Saint Kateri. Holiness is always God’s work before it’s our work. But in Saint Kateri we now have an example of the Church becoming ever more Catholic, ever more holy; and the naturally good qualities of Native American culture are enlivened by the gift of the Gospel.

One final point is worth noting from my days in Rome. Kateri was canonized with six other new saints, among them Saint Marianne Cope, a Franciscan sister of the Diocese of Syracuse, New York. Saint Marianne died in service to the lepers of Hawaii. She belonged to a religious community that grew out of the Franciscan sisters founded by Saint John Neumann. So Philadelphia had a role – indirect and invisible, but real – in the development of yet another holy woman who became a saint.

It’s not surprising. Philadelphia is the diocese of American saints. But we can’t ever be content with sainthood as part of our past. God made each of us to be saints. That means you and me. The hunger for holiness needs to animate every moment of our lives – today, right now, and into the future.

The only thing that matters is to be a saint. Kateri understood that. More than 330 years later, what a joy and a glory it is to celebrate her memory. May she pray for all of us, and lead us on the same path of love she followed home to God.

Most Rev. Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M., Cap. is the Archbishop of Philadelphia.


Ten Quotes About Hope to Lift Your Spirits

Ten Quotes About Hope to Lift Your Spirits

Scanning the various media outlets, it seems as though the bad news outnumbers the good! So, I decided that we all could use a proverbial shot in the arm to lift our spirits and  get us thinking, feeling, and acting positively again. I’ve chosen ten quotes about hope (real, Christian hope, not political jargon hope) that I think will fit the bill. Are there any quotes about hope that you particularly like? Add them! Please also share this post with others in your life who need a lift. Enjoy!

“There is some good in this world, and it’s worth fighting for.” ? J.R.R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

“Listen to the mustn’ts, child. Listen to the don’ts. Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me… Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” ? Shel Silverstein

“Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do.” –Pope John XXIII

“It isn’t as bad as you sometimes think it is. It all works out. Don’t worry. I say that to myself every morning. It all works out in the end. Put your trust in God, and move forward with faith and confidence in the future. The Lord will not forsake us. He will not forsake us. If we will put our trust in Him, if we will pray to Him, if we will live worthy of His blessings, He will hear our prayers.” ? Gordon B. Hinckley

”Wait upon the Lord; be faithful to His commandments; He will elevate your hope, and put you in possession of His Kingdom. Wait upon Him patiently; wait upon Him by avoiding all sin. He will come, doubt it not; and in the approaching day of His visitation, which will be that of your death and His judgment, He will Himself crown your holy hope. Place all your hope in the Heart of Jesus; it is a safe asylum; for he who trusts in God is sheltered and protected by His mercy. To this firm hope, join the practice of virtue, and even in this life you will begin to taste the ineffable joys of Paradise.” –Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, Father and Doctor of the Church

“I don’t think of all the misery, but of the beauty that still remains.” ? Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl

“Fairy tales do not tell children the dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children the dragons can be killed.” ? G.K. Chesterton

“All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope.” – Winston Churchill

“But what we call our despair is often only the painful eagerness of unfed hope.” –George Eliot

”The more a person loves God, the more reason he has to hope in Him. This hope produces in the Saints an unutterable peace, which they preserve even in adversity, because as they love God, and know how beautiful He is to those who love Him, they place all their confidence and find all their repose in Him alone.” –Saint Alphonsus Liguori, Doctor of the Church

Mary TV Daily Reflection 10/30/212 (My Storm Update)



     A Priest offers communion in Medjugorje       

 (c)Mary TV 2012

The Bread of Life 



October 30, 2012


Dear Family of Mary!


"Dear children! Today I call you to pray for my intentions. Renew fasting and prayer because Satan is cunning and attracts many hearts to sin and perdition. I call you, little children, to holiness and to live in grace. Adore my Son so that He may fill you with His peace and love for which you yearn. Thank you for having responded to my call." (October 25, 2012)


Many of you have written in response to yesterday's reflection, expressing how difficult fasting has been for them, and how much they want to respond to Our Lady's call to fast. I will share some more of Fr. Slavko's teaching on fasting from the book, Be Similar to My Heart:



How to Fast

The same question about fasting is always asked - How does one fast?


During these retreats, one type of fasting presents to us Our Lady as teacher. It is one of learning from her...about what fasting really is and what it does for the body, soul and spirit. Our Lady tells us in many of Her messages that we should "Pray with the heart." This is what we will learn to do with fasting, to "fast with the heart," as well as with our bodies. Fasting can become for us a certain attitude, a 'special frame of mind' that we will use in all aspects of our life.


Each day consists of breakfast, lunch and dinner, as a normal day. However, how we eat the bread and drink the water or tea is most important.


Instead of 'eating the bread and drinking the water', we will learn to experience how to 'drink the bread and eat the water.' This is done in total silence, taking each slice of bread in our hands, looking at the color, the weight and feeling the texture of it. It should be eaten very slowly, chewed at least 20 times before swallowing. The bread should be eaten by itself and the water drunk by itself.


Only after we have eaten our fill of bread, we then should drink the water or tea. Again, looking at the water or tea like we do the bread, ---looking at its color, consistency and weight, swallowing the water slowly, considering it as if it were our last drink. A whole hour should be taken to eat and drink.


This means that while eating the bread and drinking the liquid, we should try to contemplate on how each morsel of bread, each swallow, gives us nourishment and life, as it is with the Eucharist. We should try to make a clear and distinct connection between this bread of fasting, and the most precious gift of JESUS IN THE EUCHARIST, who continues to wait and want to nourish us with Himself. The Eucharist is the bread of life for our souls.


It does not matter how much bread we eat. We may eat until our bodies are satisfied. This is not the point. The point is to teach our bodies that fasting is not to deny our bodies nourishment, nor even to feel hunger, but to re-educate our hearts, our minds and our souls to experience the 'inner freedom' from pride, from selfishness - from all the temptations that hinder us from feeling the 'hunger' for God and His love.


When we have this 'inner freedom', we are then able to open ourselves and our hearts to the joy, peace and love that Our Lady continually speaks about in Her messages and wishes for us to experience each day.


When we return home and decide to fast by ourselves, we should try this technique on our own. We should try to take the time to eat slowly and drink slowly. During that one or two days of fasting, we should decide to set aside some extra time for prayer --- it can be an extra rosary, reading the Bible, attending Mass or 30 minutes or an hour of adoration. On those days of fasting, prayer should be a part of our fasting experience.


It is most important that we begin to fast when we return home from Medjugorje. We all know that it is much more difficult to fast on our own than with a group of others; however, it is at our efforts that Our Lady looks, not at our successes. (Father Slavko Barbaric, O.F.M. Be Similar to My Heart. p. 28-30)


I like the last line the best. "It is at our efforts that Our Lady looks, not at our successes." The struggle to fast is much more valuable than we know! I also like Fr. Slavko's advice about eating slowly and deliberately, contemplating the whole process. It seems like fasting on bread and water can become a way of praying, a way of giving thanks to God for bread, for water, for life.


Our Lady has asked us to fast on Wednesdays and Fridays. May our experience of fasting grow into the peace, love and joy of life!


In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!

Cathy Nolan

©Mary TV 2012


PS. For all of you who live on the East Coast of the USA and are experiencing this huge storm, we are praying for you and for all those who live in the path of the storm. May the protective and powerful hands of the Lord cover you all!



Receiving Jesus

 Contemplate the Eucharist! 

(c)MaryMatasso 2012 

Storm update here in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania:
We had a lot of rain, some wind and a short power outage but now it is really not too bad out there! It's still raining but the winds have died down. I went to the 9am Mass as usual this morning. There were about 15 other souls there too. My daughter Elizabeth and her family had to stay in a motel last night. A tree fell across the power line going to their house knocking out power and the repair crew recommended that they do not stay there because of the live wires. Otherwise, all is well, thank God!!!
Deacon John

Monday, October 29, 2012

Mary TV: October 29, 2012 Reflection




    Fr. Slavko's remembrance on Krizevac     

 (c)Josip Zubac, 2012

In Memory of Fr. Slavko 



October 29, 2012


Dear Family of Mary!


"Dear children! Today I call you to pray for my intentions. Renew fasting and prayer because Satan is cunning and attracts many hearts to sin and perdition. I call you, little children, to holiness and to live in grace. Adore my Son so that He may fill you with His peace and love for which you yearn. Thank you for having responded to my call." (October 25, 2012)


Our Lady brought up that scary word, "Fasting", again. She has asked for fasting from the very beginning of her apparitions in Medjugorje. Fasting is really important to Our Lady. She doesn't waiver on that point. She really wants all of us, her children, to fast. And very often she mentions Satan in the same message in which she asks for fasting. This is no coincidence. Fasting helps us to defend ourselves from the enemy.


Fr. Slavko Barbaric, O.F.M., directed many "fasting" retreats in Medjugorje. These retreats were 6 days long, and consisted of silence, prayer, spiritual direction, and fasting on bread and water or tea. A book has been compiled, containing his conferences, and the witness of some of the participants of his retreats. I wish to quote this witness about fasting:


What does it feel like to live on bread and water?

The thought of a week with only bread and water or even bread and tea would scare most people and some definitely would refuse such a proposition. I remember how on my evening strolls from the sanctuary to the 'Home of Peace' (Domus Paces) I would meet people whom I knew. They would always ask me the same question. "How do you put up with the hunger during your retreat?" - "But what hunger?", I would answer in all sincerity. When you have bread there is no hunger. This would awaken within me the bad memories of my war and post-war childhood, when my family endured a few months without even a crust of bread. In those years, I really did experience the bitterness of hunger. How then could I even think that in the 'Home of Peace', with all those baskets full of bread, I could feel hunger? Absolutely not. On the contrary. That entire week I did not experience it like a fast in the strict sense of the word. Beforehand, I would have said that this would be a beneficial cleansing of the interior, when the soul, with a certain ease, draws near to God, where the heart arduously adheres to prayer. Even if not all the people, like me, hungered for bread in their childhood, everyone lived the week on just bread and water. Not once during the week did I hear anybody complain of hunger or weakness. Nobody showed even a slightest longing for some other food, other than what was on the table - bread and water or bread and tea. Maybe someone every so often would sigh for a cup of coffee, but it would finish with a short sigh and a reparational smile. From that we can surmise, that all of us participating on the retreat were simple mortal beings. Therefore, maybe those who would refrain from this type of retreat, out of fear of 'fasting' need not have any such fear. It was all tolerated without any particular effort. The experience taught us that in all of this, there is something really charming; something that reveals in us a more beautiful aspect of our human nature. (Fr. Slavko Barbaric. Be Similar to My Heart. p. 27)


I think it is important to take the fear out of fasting. So many of us have tried to fast and failed. And now when we think of it we get nervous. Fasting is not easy. But it is also not fatal! We can fast! Most of us are healthy enough to fast on bread and water. Some are not. But we can all fast in some way. Fasting builds in us a defensive barrier against the temptations of the devil. And one of his most successful temptations is FEAR! He knows just how to fill us with fear. And so fear of fasting is a good bet for him. If he can keep us from fasting, we will always be vulnerable to his suggestions, because we will feel weak. Fasting makes us strong in our hearts, strong and able to say NO to ourselves!


If Our Lady is bringing up fasting again, it is because it is important. Let's not let fear stop us from saying "yes" to her call. Let's renew fasting!

A little cross on Apparition Hill


In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!

Cathy Nolan

©Mary TV 2012




PS. Fruit of Medjugorje airs again tonight at 8:00 pm Eastern Time. Tonight we have Fr. Paul Nomellini, the Purgatory Priest! Just in time for All Saints and All Souls Days!! Don't miss it!




Sunday, October 28, 2012

CMMB: Your Weekly Reflection in Prayer

Weekly prayer reflection for Fall
“On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to call out, ‘Jesus Son of David, have pity on me!’ Jesus said in reply, ‘Be on your way! Your faith has healed you.’”
Mark 10:47 & 52
October 28, 2012 
St. Jude 
Dear John
St. Jude has become known as the patron of special or hopeless cases. This popular apostle and saint is turned to when the odds are against us, when we seem to be in a hopeless situation, when everything else seems to fail. 
Of course it is God who comes to our aid. In the Gospel, Jesus reaches out and restores sight to the blind Bartimaeus who probably felt that his situation was hopeless. Devotion to St. Jude reminds us of the power of prayer and petition. And it reminds us of how many people are in difficult situations, suffering from illness, or caught in harmful relationships or addictions. Our faith and devotion to St. Jude reminds us that God is with us. We do not give up. We turn to God in trust and faith, and believe that God hears our pleas even if He may answer them in ways we do not expect.
At CMMB it is our honor to pray for you and your intentions. As we celebrate All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day, and as we move toward Advent and Christmas, we will be keeping our deceased family and friends in our thoughts and prayers. If you would like to add your own intentions to our prayer list, please email them to and we will join our prayers with yours.

O God, we thank You for the glorious company of the apostles, and especially for St. Jude. We pray that as he was faithful and zealous in his mission, so may we, with ardent devotion make known the love and mercy of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, Who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.  

Rev. Peter Schineller, S.J., CMMB Board of Directors
All Souls Day donate button final


Saturday, October 27, 2012

The Most Blessed Sacrament: The Greatest Possible Gift in the Person of Jesus Christ


“Today during Holy Mass I saw the crucified Jesus. Jesus was nailed to the cross and was in great agony. His suffering pierced my soul and body in a manner which was invisible, but nevertheless most painful.

Oh, what awesome mysteries take place during Mass! A great mystery is accomplished in the Holy Mass. With what great devotion should we listen to and take part in this death of Jesus. One day we will know what God is doing for us in each Mass, and what sort of gift He is preparing in it for us. Oh Jesus, my Jesus, with what great pain is my soul pierced when I see this fountain of life gushing forth with such sweetness and power for each soul, while at the same time I see souls withering away and drying up through their own fault”.

Our Lord said to her with great sadness: “Oh how painful it is to Me that souls so seldom unite themselves to Me in Holy Communion. I wait for souls, and they are indifferent toward Me. I love them tenderly and sincerely and they distrust Me…they treat Me as a dead object…”

St. Faustina Kowalska


Living with God's will is the Journey and the Goal... Transformation into Christ
In describing St. Gertrude the Great’s friendship with Jesus, Fr. Prevot states:
“The condition of friendship is to share by the deepest sympathy, every pleasure and affliction of the one we love and have but one heart with him. Jesus has fulfilled this condition (perfectly). He has taken our human heart and made Himself one Heart with us…Oh, may it be the same with me dear Lord! May my sentiments be guided entirely by yours, and may there be between your will and mine, not only union, but unity. Oh Jesus, may your Heart be my heart, your sorrow, my sorrow, your joy, my joy! May I leave myself entirely to go into Jesus: He is my Center…He is my all! Oh Jesus, You in me and I in You! May we be united forever, now and in eternity!”


St. Gertrude teaches us how our actions are sanctified by union with the Heart of Jesus. She recommends we place all our works in His Heart as a sacred refuge that they may be transformed and sanctified by His Divine intentions. This reality requires daily practice, but will be one of the most important acts of our daily life. We can and will transform all for God’s glory and the salvation of souls as God’s power and mercy are infinite. He wants us, begs us, to participate in His Divine love.

Fr. Andrew Prevot

Please do forward these spiritual gems to your Catholic friends.

You can receive complimentary materials to make your Consecration to God through Mary’s Immaculate Heart ( important spiritual protection at this time in salvation history) at where you can also learn about Our Lady of Las Lajas.

You can learn more about our Lady of Fatima at

God Bless you and your work,

Deacon Bob Tony

Deacon Bob Ellis Anthony Mullen
Executive Director
World Apostolate of Fatima, USA 222 S. Manoa Road
A Pontifical Association of the Faithful Havertown, PA 19083
visit us at: visit us at:

The Myrrh-Streaming Icons of Hawaii



"From thy Holy Icon, O Lady Theotokos, blessed myrrh has flowed abundantly. Thou hast thereby consoled those, in exile, faithful unto thee, and hast enlighten the unbelievers by thy Son's light. Therefore O Lady, with tears we bow down to thee. Be merciful to us in the hour of judgment. Lest having received thy mercy we be punished as those who have been contemptuous of it. But grant us through thy prayers to bring forth spiritual fruit, and save our souls" - Troparion to the Iveron Icon, Tone 7.
"By now all our parishioners living in Honolulu have heard about the blessing that has been bestowed on us sinners, unworthy though we may be, by the grace of the Almighty and the love and concern for us by the All Holy Theotokos. I have asked our Reader Nectarios, in whose home the two icons began streaming myrrh, to describe in his own words what has happened."
Read The Letter from the Reader Nectarios... here:
Hat-tip to

Priesthood Sunday

Check out this website I found at

From BarbInNebraska Did you see my class' Priesthood Sunday Wordle that they made?


Beautiful! I pray that we deacons also live up to these thoughts!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Prayers and Devotions for the Holy Souls in Purgatory

Tribulation Times


October 26, 2012  


(2Ma 12:43-46) And making a gathering, he sent twelve thousand drachms of silver to Jerusalem for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection. (For if he had not hoped that they that were slain should rise again, it would have seemed superfluous and vain to pray for the dead,) And because he considered that they who had fallen asleep with godliness, had great grace laid up for them. It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins. 

'Prayers, Promises, and Devotions for the Holy Souls in Purgatory'

 BHLA: 12 Steps to Avoid Purgatory excerpts from "How to Avoid Purgatory", By Fr. Paul O'Sullivan

*1.* In every prayer you say, every Mass you hear, every Communion you receive, every good work you perform have the express intention of imploring God to grant you a holy and happy death and no Purgatory. Surely God will hear a prayer said with such confidence and perseverance.

*(Note: Read about the tremendous value of the Mass, here: (

*2.* Always wish to do God's will. It is in every sense the best for you.  When you do or seek anything that is not God's will, you are sure to suffer. Say, therefore, fervently each time you recite the Our Father: Thy will be done.

*3.* Accept all the sufferings, sorrows, pains and disappointments of life, be they great or small, ill health, loss of goods, the death of your dear ones, heat or cold, rain or sunshine as coming from God. Bear them calmly and patiently for love of Him and in penance for your sins. Of course, one may use all his efforts to ward off trouble and pain, but when one cannot avoid it let him bear it patiently. Impatience and revolt make sufferings vastly greater and more difficult to bear.

*4.* The greatest act in Christ's life was His Passion. As He had a Passion so each one of us has a Passion. Our Passion consists in the sufferings and labors of every day. Therefore, let us do our work, accept its disappointments and hardships and bear our pains in union with the Passion of Christ. We gain more merit by a little pain than by years of pleasure.

*5.* Forgive all injuries and offences for in proportion, as we forgive others, God forgives us. Go to confession. This sacrament does more than "just" rid us of our sins; it gives us a tremendous increase in sanctifying grace. It wins for us a higher place in Heaven, with increased union with God. Each time we go to confession, we are preserved from many dangers and misfortunes which might otherwise have befallen us. A devout confession helps us to hear the inspirations of the Holy Spirit, and to hear and follow the advice of our guardian angels.

*6.* Avoid mortal sins, deliberate venial sins and break off bad habits.  Then it will be relatively easy to satisfy God's justice for sins of frailty. Above all avoid sins against charity and chastity in thought, word and deed for these sins are the reason why many souls are detained in Purgatory for a long time.

*7. *If afraid of doing too much work, do many little things, acts of kindness and charity, give the alms you can, don't grumble or complain when things are not as you please, don't complain of others, never refuse to do a favor for others when possible. These and such acts are a splendid penance.

*8.* Do all in your power for the Holy Souls in Purgatory. Pray for them constantly, get others to do so, join the Friends of the Poor Souls and ask all those you know to do likewise. The Holy Souls will repay you most generously.

*9.* There is no more powerful way of obtaining from God a most holy and happy death than by weekly confession, daily Mass and daily communion.
Masses may be arranged after or before someone's death to expedite their time in Purgatory.

*10.* A daily visit to the Blessed Sacrament – if only for three or four minutes – is an easy way of obtaining the same grace. Kneel in the presence of Jesus with eyes fixed on the Tabernacle or Monstrance, sure that He is looking at you, then repeat little prayers like these: My Jesus, Mercy. My Jesus, have pity on me a sinner. My Jesus, I love you. My Jesus, give me a happy death.

*11.* Wear the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. "Whosoever dies clothed in this scapular shall not suffer eternal fire." This is the Blessed Virgin Mary's Promise, made July 16, 1251 to St. Simon Stock. The Sabbatine Privilege is Mary's promise to release from Purgatory soon after death, all those who: 1) wear the brown scapular 2) observe chastity according to their state in life and 3) say the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary every day. To be eligible for this scapular promise, one must be enrolled.

*12.* Use holy water to remit venial sin. Because of the blessing attached to it, Holy Mother Church strongly encourages its use upon her children, especially when danger threatens, such as fire, storms, sickness and other calamities. Every Catholic home should have a supply of holy water.  Sprinkle some holy water on the ground, then make the Sign of the Cross and pray: "By this holy water and by Thy Precious Blood, wash away all my sins and the sins of the Poor Souls in Purgatory, O Lord".

CATHOLIC DOORSPrayer for the Holy Souls 

Immortal God, holy Lord, Father and Protector of all You have created, we raise our hearts to You today for those who have passed out of this mortal life.

In Your loving mercy, Father, be pleased to receive them in Your heavenly company, and forgive the failings and faults they may have done from human frailty.

Your only Son, Christ, our Savior, suffered so cruelly that He might deliver them from the second death. By His merits may they share in the glory of His victory over sin and death.

For all the faithful who have died we pray, but in particular for those dear to us, parents, relatives, and friends. Nor do we forget all who did good to us while on earth, who helped us by their prayers, sacrifices, and example. We pray also for any who may have done us harm, and stand in special need of Your forgiveness.

May the merits and prayers of our Virgin Mother, Mary, and those of all Your angels and saints, speak for us and assist them now. We ask this in Christ's name. Amen.

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of God

9. You ask me for some short prayer by which to testify your love for God.  I know of and consider nothing more efficacious than this same love, for when one loves, everything speaks of love, even our most absorbing occupations can be a proof of our love.  Love then- as St. Augustine says- and do what you will.

Prayer request?  Send an email to:

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