Saturday, October 31, 2009

Sunday, November 1, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
All Saints

It is impossible for the Church to celebrate during the year the feast of every saint. Hence a feast was instituted to commemorate all the saints, and it dates back to at least the beginning of the fifth century. When dedicating the Roman Pantheon, Pope Boniface consecrated it to our Blessed Lady and to all the saints, and appointed November 1 as the principal annual feast in that church. Two centuries later, the feast was kept on that day throughout the West.

What Strikes Me Most Today

Again it is the art! I love this picture: St. Paul followed by an endless row of Pauline Saints. I am honored to know many people living today who are right in that line following St. Paul!

What strikes you most today?
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Friday, October 30, 2009

Saturday, October 31, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Gentleness of Soul

Gratitude is a duty: towards God, towards men. Ingratitude, whether towards God or towards men, is unreasonable. Gratitude obtains other gifts for us and makes us loved by men and blessed by God. The greatest expression of gratitude is our correspondence to grace and the good use of the talents given us by divine Providence.

What Strikes Me Most Today

Gratitude is one of those things that is a win-win: it makes us loved by men and blessed by God. I like how practical today's writing is, discussing the benefits of gratitude with God as well as with men. Many things that could make us popular with other people could be a near occasion of sin or an actual sin itself. Gratitude, on the other hand, makes everybody happy! I especially am grateful for those who by word and example bring me closer to God, so it does make sense that gratitude is so important with God and with men.

What strikes you most today?
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Thursday, October 29, 2009

Friday, October 30, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Who Are the Apostles?

Among the saints, the first are the apostles, the princes, the witnesses of Jesus, the universal preachers. May they be honored, imitated and invoked in a special way. They observed the Divine Master well and reproduced Him better than others. They are universal teachers and martyrs. We cannot find better people to teach us the way to follow in our apostolate. They are intimate friends of Jesus, excellent educators and teachers. They are the crown of Jesus in heaven, and it was for them chiefly that He recited the prayer: "Father, those whom you have given me, I wish that where I am they also may be."

What Strikes Me Most Today

That last line, "I wish that where I am they also may be." How I would like to hear Jesus say those words about my family and friends and me!

What strikes you most today?
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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Thursday, October 29, 2009

From A Year With Blessed James Alberione,
Compiled by J. Maurus
Defeat the defects

Let us aim at not only doing good but doing it with intense love, and to develop this capital of grace.
With each good action done for God one grows. And tomorrow you continue to grow with the same action performed today, and the work itself becomes a source of greater merit, for there is the multiplier.
The treasures of grace can be accumulated!
"I always have the same defects; I don't progress." Grow in the love of God, forget about the defects, work for love of God and then you go forward without overcoming the defects which seem to you invincible, and everything is turned to love, and then victory follows by itself.
St. Teresa of Avila has a relevant observation. She says that she was bothered about something and was unable to manage it. But don't focus on such things, instead grow in faith; let your resolutions be regarding faith. We should take the right way to win, to overcome.

What Strikes Me Most Today

I always feel better knowing a great Saint dealt with similar issues to those I deal with daily. St. Teresa of Avila "was bothered about something and was unable to manage it. But don't focus on such things, instead grow in faith." What this means to me in a practical sense is that I have to let go of past sins. I have confessed them. Not only due I underestimate God's Mercy if I don't let them go, but dwelling on these past issues can prevent my growing in faith. I can see why Satan may want me to feel like I am not forgiven --> that would make me focus on the sin and not on God. I have to trust in the Divine Mercy of Jesus, and spend my energies growing in my relationship with Jesus Master, the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Jesus, I Trust in You!

What strikes you most today?
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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

From A Year With Blessed James Alberione,
Compiled by J. Maurus
Give the Maximum

The greatest virtue: faith.
The greatest penance: charity.

What Strikes Me Most Today

When I read this, I immediately thought of Mother Teresa. She was a great example of faith and a great example of charity. What an awesome example for the world!

What strikes you most today?
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Monday, October 26, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

From A Year With Blessed James Alberione,
Compiled by J. Maurus
Jesus the Divine Master

Master divine, I should be like you.
Master divine, every good is yours.
Master divine, I am a useless servant.
Master divine, to you alone be all honor.
Master divine, let all disrespect be mine.
Master divine, give me time for penance.
Master divine, unite me with your passion.
Master divine, that I may rightly suffer.
Master divine, that I may make adequate reparation for the sins committed because of me.

What Strikes Me Most Today

The line "Master divine, let all disrespect be mine." This line bothered me a lot, but I think what Blessed Alberione meant was that any disrespect from anyone should be aimed at me and away from Jesus. Jesus did not deserve the disrespect he received in His Passion, and he certainly does not deserve mine. I think it bothered me, also, when I think of how little I honor Jesus with my time everyday. I need to spend more time contemplating the "Master divine." I also follow my "that I may rightly suffer" line with a silent "but don't feel like you have to send suffering; I'm happy to offer up the suffering I already have," but it's the phrase "rightly suffer" that makes me want to avoid sin in the future.

What strikes you most today?
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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Monday, October 26, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Hear Him!

Jesus pleased His heavenly Father with His public life. As Teacher, He preached: "My teaching is not my own, but His who sent me." He revealed His Father to us, and also His Father's works, goodness, will and mercy. His second love was for men: He brought the message of salvation to the whole world. Amid fatigue, contradictions and accusations, He spent His life helping and blessing everyone. He formed the apostles, founded His Church, instituted the sacraments, established the new covenant between God and man and taught us the doctrine of perfection, which is totally inspired by charity. So, when for the second time the Father spoke from heaven, besides confirming that His Son, Jesus, was His beloved, He added, addressing all humanity: "Hear Him." Jesus summarizes all in these words: "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life."

What Strikes Me Most Today

"I am the Way, the Truth and the Life." That says it all!

What strikes you most today?
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Sunday, October 25, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
The Compass Points of Life

There are children who are a hundred years old, whose mental development has remained stationary at the fourteen to eighteen age level, while their body has grown and they have made progress in their studies. They are still hypocritical and fearful of what people may say of them. their manner of thinking and reasoning is childish. They never mature; although they reach adulthood, they are always unripe fruit. They are incapable of taking responsibility and are slaves of the opinions of others. They have no clear, guiding principles, but are rather like ships on the high seas without compass or rudder, at the mercy of the waves, or like airplanes without pilots. They have not found the compass points of life. Nor are experiences of any value to them. At the age of twenty-two or twenty-four, they still do not know what they will do and what they want in life. And you begin to wonder whether you are really dealing with a person who should have had the use of reason three times over and have reached adulthood.

What Strikes Me Most Today

The image of the ship being lost scares me, but how much scarier is loss of eternal life? The thought of that terrifies me! Thank God we have Jesus!

What strikes you most today?
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Saturday, October 24, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
St. Anthony Claret
Bishop

This saint, born in 1807, was no stranger to hard work. He labored as a weaver before being ordained a priest in 1835. Father Anthony became the founder of a religious order, the Missionary Institute of Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (the Claretians). This tireless man of God preached the Gospel in Spain, the Canary Isles, Cuba, etc. He was a great believer in a strong Catholic press and he followed the proceedings of the First Vatican Council with interest.
After suffering trials and exile, Archbishop Anthony Claret died in 1870 and was declared a saint in 1950.
Let us ask St. Anthony the grace to preach with our lives the love and patience which lit his life.

What Strikes Me Most Today

"He was a believer in a strong Catholic press and he followed the proceedings of the First Vatican Council with interest." This sounds like Blessed Alberione, who dedicated his life to a strong Catholic press and did not miss one day of the Second Vatican Council.

What strikes you most today?
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Friday, October 23, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Aberione
St. John of Capistrano
Priest

St. John was born at Capistrano (Abruzzi), Italy, on June 24, 1385. He was a lawyer and judge who at the age of 30 entered the Franciscan Order. Father John became a zealous, self-sacrificing crusader who won many converts to Christ. He died in 1456.
Let us arm ourselves with prayer and penance so as to acquire the self-sacrifice which inspired this great saint.

What Strikes Me Most Today

It strikes me that he was born more than 600 years ago! If he had been the greatest lawyer and judge of his day, we would never know who he was. But he lived for Christ, so generations through the centuries have honored the life of this holy man! St. John of Capistrano, pray for us!

What strikes you most today?
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Thursday, October 22, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Homage of the Mind

The first homage to be offered to the Divine Master consists in doing things with the mind. Body, heart, will and mind enter into every meritorious human action. In other words, things must be done with love, using our energies with intelligence. The mind must be brought into play first of all.

What Strikes Me Most Today

Today's writings immediately brought to mind newly canonized St. Damien! I imagine his mind first, accepting a life with the lepers - a life of pain and sacrifice, but he offered it all to God, knowing that it would involve his body, heart, will and mind. St. Damien, pray for us!

What strikes you most today?
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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
The Ideal: Christ

The most perfect and sublime ideal of divine life was beyond the capacity of human reason; it was too high even for faith. So Christ abased Himself: He became man, child, servant, worker; He wanted to know the weakness of our first years, our fatigue, poverty, obscurity, silence, hunger, thirst, sorrow, death. He submitted Himself to all our miseries except sin and the disorders that come from sin, but He endured the pain of sin: "He has borne our infirmities." O God, O my Jesus! You are the ideal of perfection!

What Strikes Me Most Today

Today's writing reminds me that the ideal of perfection is imitating Christ, living Christ, being no longer I but Christ who lives in me. This is different from everyone liking me and agreeing with me - I must remain true always to the Divine Master, not men.

What strikes you most today?
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Monday, October 19, 2009

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day
by Blessed James Alberione
Solitude

Holy solitude is a need intenely felt. In this solitude Jesus, the Divine Master, will listen to our confidences, will speak to our hearts, will embrace the prodigal son, will give us rest, will hear our prayers, will give us His graces. We think of His gentle invitation: "Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest."

What Strikes Me Most Today

I could use a little time alone with Jesus today, for every one of the reasons listed above. I think our world today lacks adequate solitude, and it's hard to hear God without it!

What strikes you most today?
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Sunday, October 18, 2009

Monday, October 19, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Sts. Isaac Jogues and John de Br├ębeuf, Priests and Martyrs,
and Companions, Martyrs
St. Isaac Jogues: With Burning Heart
(book by Sr. Christine Virginia Orfeo, fsp, and Sr. Mary Elizabeth Tebo, fsp)

Taken prisoners by the Iroquois tribe, these martyrs - six Jesuit priests and two lay brothers -were put to atrocious tortures and then death, which they joyfully suffered for the love of God.
How de we accept God's will?

What Strikes Me Most Today

The Jesuit High School I attended had a chapel named in honor of the North American Martyrs. These true heroes of the faith did not have to deal with possible embarrassment of discussing their faith, they knew they could very well be killed for the evangelizing they were called by God to carry out in the New World. They were definitely St. Pauls in America. That is impressive faith, and they are definitely high on my list of heroes!

What strikes you most today?
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Saturday, October 17, 2009

Sunday, October 18, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
St. Luke
Evangelist

St. Luke, a gentile, was born at Antioch and was converted by the Apostle Paul. A great follower and loyal companion of Paul, Luke, a medical doctor, accompanied the Apostle on many journeys. St. Luke is regarded as the historian of the New Testament. He authored the third Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles.
Let us love the Word of God and do our utmost to make it known to others.

What Strikes Me Most Today

A medical doctor whose life was changed by St. Paul making Jesus Master, Way, Truth, and Life known to him... I can relate to that!

What strikes you most today?
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Friday, October 16, 2009

Saturday, October 17, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
St. Ignatius of Antioch
Bishop and Martyr

"St. Ignatius was a disciple of the apostles and was elected by them to be the Bishop of Antioch. He was condemned to death by the Emperor Trajan. When the holy bishop heard the lions roar, he exclaimed: 'I am the wheat of Christ, ground by the teeth of beasts to become pure bread.'
Let us ask St. Ignatius to help us understand Jesus' words to His disciples: 'The man who loves his life loses it, while the man who hates his life in this world preserves it to life eternal (Lk. 12:25).'"

What Strikes Me Most Today

What faith, for a man about to be eaten alive by lions to be so optimistic and philosophical. Why? He knew Jesus, Way, Truth, and Life - period!

What strikes you most today?
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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Friday, October 16, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day
by Blessed James Alberione
St. Hedwig
Religious

St. Hedwig, model wife and mother of seven children, was known for her humility, charity, and prayerfulness. When her husband, Duke Henry of Poland, died, she entered the Cistercian Monastery of Trebnitz where her daughter was abbess. She was also the aunt of St. Elizabeth of Hungary. Hedwig died in 1243 and was canonized twenty years later by Pope Clement IV.
Let us learn from St. Hedwig that remarkable humility of which saints are made.

What Strikes Me Most Today

Talk about a holy family! Hedwig was the sister of Queen Gertrude of Hungary and sister-in-law of Gertrude's husband, the just and pious Andrew II, king of Hungary, the aunt of Saint Elizabeth of Hungary St. Elizabeth's brother, the virtuous Bela IV, king of Hungary, who became the father of Saint Cunegundes and of Saint Margaret of Hungary, a Dominican nun. Another of her nephews was Coloman, King of Galicia and prince of Russia, who led an angelic life amid the multiple affairs of the world and the troubles of war. WOW!

What strikes you most today?
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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Thursday, October 15, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day
by Blessed James Alberione
St. Teresa of Avila
Virgin and Doctor

The colorful and dynamic St. Teresa was born at Avila, Spain, in 1515. She entered the Carmelite Order in 1535. Favored with distinct commands from God, she was called to reform her Order which she did with the help of St. John of the Cross. She died at the age of 67 in 1582 and was declared a doctor of the Church in 1970.
Let us ask St. Teresa to inspire in us the desire for true holiness.

What Strikes Me Most Today

I always remember a quote of St. Teresa's that makes me laugh, coming from a Doctor of the Church. After some particularly painful trials, St. Teresa knelt in prayer and said to God, "If this is how you treat your friends, it's no wonder you have so few!"

What strikes you most today?
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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Wholeness

Everything can be found in the devotion to Jesus Master: dogma, morals, worship. The whole Christ is in this devotion. Through it, man is entirely taken and grafted onto Jesus Christ. This is complete piety. Thus the Christian grows in wisdom (study and heavenly wisdom), in age (manliness and strength) and in grace (holiness) until Jesus takes over the whole person entirely. "It is no longer I that live, it is Christ living in me." All devotions to the Person of Jesus Christ, God and Man, converge on this devotion.

What Strikes Me Most Today

"All devotions to the Person of Jesus Christ, God and Man, converge on this devotion." That is why I thought of this picture. At first I thought it was a representation of our Lord as Jesus Master. It is actually a Divine Mercy image. I think that proves Blessed Alberione's point that all devotions converge on devotion to Jesus Master.

What strikes you most today?
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Monday, October 12, 2009

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

From A Year With Blessed James Alberione,
Compiled by J. Maurus
Return to self: examen of conscience

The conscience is the most secret and intimate sanctuary of a person. In it are found one's interior dispositions, emotions, habits, intentions, aspirations, habitual thoughts and desires.
To penetrate this sanctuary is to discover the state of the soul.
Practiced faithfully, the examen of conscience deepens habitual reflection, guiding the spirit in its orientation to God, watching over the internal movements of the spirit, of the heart, and of the will.
Just as a well-planned project makes simple the construction of a house, the examen greatly simplifies one's spiritual efforts: every brick is in its place as planned by the architect.
The examen has a profound impact on our entire spiritual life. However, as in all the rest, the fruit depends on perseverance.

What Strikes Me Most Today

My oldest son attends a Jesuit High School where, every afternoon, everything stops, EVERYTHING, and everyone in the building stops and reflects and prays. My son says that he is in such a habit of doing it, and he loves it, that he thinks it will be a practice that will stay with him the remainder of his life! (At least he hopes it will, and so does Dad!)

What strikes you most today?
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Monday, October 12, 2009

From A Year With Blessed James Alberione
Compiled by J. Maurus
Offer your bodies as a living sacrifice

As there is the martyrdom for faith, there is the martyrdom for love too. Now the work of the apostolate is an exercise of love. It is to offer our body to God. As St. Paul said: 'Offer yourself as a living sacrifice to God, dedicated to His service and pleasing to Him. This is the true worship that you should offer.' (Romans 12:1)

What strikes me most today

St. Paul in Chains, by Sr. Elaine Penrice, fsp
I love this picture. St. Paul has lost his freedom, but he doesn't look like he's mad at the world or angry with God. He has given himself totally to God, so he is showing us this "martyrdom for love" that Blessed Alberione speaks of today. St. Paul allowed himself to be offered as a living sacrifice to God, dedicating himself to His service. How could he NOT look as content as he does above (despite the chains). He doesn't look thrilled (who would in these circumstances?), but he has a contented look despite his trials and sufferings (which we all face to different degrees as part of life).
P.S. Sr. Elaine drew this for her card when she took final vows!

What strikes you most today?
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Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sunday, October 11, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Truth
The Lord has put us on the path to truth. Many philosophies have sprung up or will spring up, but we must always check them against the doctrine of Jesus Christ and accep them only if they are in conformity with it. No matter how much time passes or what progress in study is made, Jesus is always the only infallible Master, whose doctrine is eminently certain and indestructible. Taking the Gospel in hand, with a commentary approved by the Church, we know with certainly what Jesus preached. Our century is the century of material progress, but, as far as concerns the doctrine of Jesus Christ, it has a long way to go.
What Strikes Me Most Today
Today is a momentous day for me in my Faith life --> I will be making my promise as a Pauline Cooperator at St. Raymond's Cathedral in St. Louis. After that, I will formally be a Pauline Cooperator, a member of one of the ten branches of the Pauline Family started by Blessed James Alberione. Please keep me in your prayers today as I pray for all who read this!

What Strikes You Most Today?
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Friday, October 9, 2009

Saturday, October 10, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
St. John Leonardi
Priest

"St. John was born in Tuscany of Italy, in 1541. Ordained a priest at the age of thirty, he founded the Clerks Regular of the Mother of God, a religious community dedicated to the teaching of Christian doctrine in those troubled Reformation times. St. Philip Neri was his friend and guide in spiritual matters. Father Leonardi helped Cardianl Vives found the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, which has since produced many zealous and saintly missionaries. St. John died at Rome in 1609 while taking care of plague victims.
Do we make any efforts to propagate the Faith?"
What Strikes Me Most Today
Dying of the plague because he took care of people with the plague is what strikes me most today. I imagine he was like Father Damien of Molokai (who will be St. Damien in less than 48 hours!) God gives us this one life --> how heroic and selfless to offer it up for others!

What strikes you most today?
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Thursday, October 8, 2009

Friday, October 9, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
St. Denis, Bishop and Martyr, and Companions, Martyrs

"St. Denis was sent from Rome around the year 250 to be the first bishop of Paris, France. Denis and his clergy organized the Church in Paris. He labored there for eight years until he was martyred during Emperor Valerian's persecution in 258.
Let us aim to do our 'bit' for Christ as well as possible, no matter the cost?"

What Strikes Me Most Today

The area where St. Denis was martyred is the area in Paris known as Montmartre (Mount of Martyrs). It is believed that after St. Denis was martyred, he held his own severed head in his hands and continued to preach the Gospel. I guess we will never be able to prove in this life if that actually happened, but it makes a great story!

What strikes you most today?
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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Thursday, October 8, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
The Rosary leads us to the cross

Let us learn from the rosary the practice of the virtues necessary for our state of life.
The first plague that infects humanity is the desire and search for pleasure. We always try to avoid pain and hardships. However, one who tries to avoid suffering will never be content because one will find another still greater. The one who has the spirit of Jesus and Mary will have sufferings similar to theirs, but will have glory in heaven proportionate to the sacrifices.
Arm yourself with the rosary, we shall not be discouraged, let us go forward.

What Strikes Me Most Today

I had to think about the line above where one who tries to avoid suffering will find even greater suffering (if I'm reading that correctly, I know sometimes things are lost in the translation). I guess it is just a fact that we will have sufferings in this life, and our relationship with our Savior and Creator gets us through them and draws us closer to Him. I don't think we have to look for suffering, but I guess the point is we should embrace Christ and head on these trials with Him. If, instead, we try to seek pleasure and avoid suffering, we miss opportunities to ask for and accept His Divine Mercy.

What strikes you most today? I'm sure others are understanding this lesson from Blessed Alberione better than I. Please click on "COMMENTS" below to share what today's writing says to you.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Our Lady of the Rosary

This feast was instituted by Pope Gregory XIII to commemorate the victory of Lepanto, when forces of Islam (Moslems) which threatened to invade Europe, had been overcome through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin invoked with the recitation of the rosary. The great naval battle of Lepanto, October 7, 1571, saved Christian Europe and Christian civilization.
Let us honor the Mother of God by faithfully meditatin and reciting the rosary daily.
What Strikes Me Most Today
How different would Europe have been if Christianity had been halted or significantly reduced in the 1500's - I can't even imagine! It makes me wonder what our world would be like today if faithful souls did not pray the rosary daily - I can't even imagine - so I really should start praying the rosary EVERY day!
What strikes you most today?
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Monday, October 5, 2009

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
St. Bruno
Priest

St. Bruno (1030-1100) was born at Cologne. After studying in Paris, he taught theology for over 25 years. The desire for solitude led him to retire with 6 companions to the quiet of the Chartreuse Alps. It was there that St. Bruno founded the Carthusian Order.
Let us find the real meaning of life as St. Bruno did, in prayer and communication with God.

What Strikes Me Most Today
St. Bruno had a desire for solitude. I believe God works through us through our desires. A life of solitude may be tough for many, but I bet God put that longing and desire for solitude in St. Bruno's heart to bring him incredible joy, so he was incredibly happy to live this life.

What strikes you most today?
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Sunday, October 4, 2009

Monday, October 5, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Acknowledgment of Christ

Jesus Christ came to men as their Master. He was acknowledged as such: "In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God... and the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us... full of grace and truth." The Church uses noble expressions to describe the Divine Master: "Splendor of peace, candor of eternal light, angel of great counsel, true light, eternal wisdom, Teacher of the apostles, Doctor of the evangelists, in whom are all the treasures of the wisdom and knowledge of God, light of confessors... " All these re-echo the thirty-odd occasions in the Gospel on which Jesus is called Master, including the clear affirmation: "You call me Master and Lord, and rightly, because that is what I am."

What Strikes Me Most Today

Actually, the term "angel of great counsel" struck me most today. I've never heard that one before, but when I first read it, I thought how inadequate it is to compare God to an angel. Then I realized almost all my images of God make Him more human, I suppose so my small brain can begin to comprehend His Eternal Everything! So "angel of great counsel" helps me realize --> True God and True Man (but so much more than human) and so much more than angel - it helps me realize how far I am from being able to fully comprehend Who God is!

What strikes you most today?
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Saturday, October 3, 2009

Sunday, October 4, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
St. Francis of Assisi
Loyalty to Those Who Ask for Prayers

"'Pray for me, I pray for you.' These should not be mere expressions! St. Francis of Assisi after he had promised to pray for a person, turned to his companion and said: 'Let's pray at once, or we may forget about it!' If we have the spirit of God, we love the apostolate of prayer because God Himself has given us this command. God has obliged each one of us to help his brothers. God wants all men to be saved."

What Strikes Me Most Today

I have certainly been guilty of this. People ask for prayers, and I assure them I will. But just saying I will pray for them is not the same as actually getting on my knees and praying for them. As a practical matter, I need to come up with a plan to be sure I really pray for those I promise to. If I can't pray right away, I will try to get in the habit of adding it to my "To Do" list on my iPhone - I always check that for all the things I'm behind on, and I'm sure St. Francis would have recommended the iPhone for this purpose if they had been in existence back then (I know Blessed Alberione would be coming up with even more iPhone applications to further spread the Gospel and bring us closer to the Divine Master!)

What strikes you most today?
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Friday, October 2, 2009

Saturday, October 3, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
The two ways

Two ways are before us: one is smooth and spacious, but leads to hell. The other, instead, is narrow, steep, strewn at times, with thorns and stones and leads to salvation.
"Go in through the narrow gate, because the gate to hell is wide and the road that leads to it is easy, and there are many who travel it. But the gate to life is narrow and the way that leads to it hard, and there are few people who find it" (Mt 7:13-14).
To choose and walk on the narrow path requires courage because many take the broad one. On the other hand, many are diffident and find discouraging the narrow path, the path of sanctity, which takes one to paradise, a lovely paradise.
There is need for prayer which gives strength, strength that comes from God.

What Strikes Me Most Today

The picture that goes with today's writing of Blessed Alberione is more the way I picture this passage from Matthew. When I looked for pictures of the "narrow gate" or "narrow path to heaven," they were beautiful, peaceful, tranquil, and very inviting. They appear to be the easy choice. My life path is more like the picture above - not perfect, but trying to get to heaven. The gift of life God gives us is an awesome gift, and it gives us the opportunity of eternity with Him. But sometimes (especially this week for me), bad things can happen along the way. I often feel sorry for myself and look at the dark, imperfect days with self-pity, but those days are gifts, too, because they force me to look toward heaven (the light at the end of this climb), take larger steps forward, and remind me to bring others to God, also. Although often difficult, we must encourage one another to keep progressing forward toward Jesus, for He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life!

What strikes you most today?
Click on "COMMENTS" below to share your thoughts.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Friday, October 2, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
Guardian Angels

This feast was instituted by Pope Paul V in 1608. As we learn in Scripture, the angels serve God in many ways. Some are God's messengers; some watch over us.
Let us love our faithful Guardian Angel and never cause him sorrow or shame by committing sin.

What Strikes Me Most Today

The reality of our Guardian Angel always present makes me think how he must react when I sin. That thought alone gives me even more incentive to avoid sin and the near occasion of sin.

What strikes you most today?
Click on "COMMENTS" below to share your thoughts.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

From Saint and Thought For Every Day,
by Blessed James Alberione
St. Theresa of the Child Jesus
Virgin

St. Theresa was born in France in 1873. At the age of 15 she entered the Carmelite Order. During the 9 years of her religious life, she lived as a humble, obedient and charitable sister. She did nothing which could be called extraordinary. Her sanctity consisted in doing well all her daily duties and practices of piety for the love of God and for the conversion of sinners. St. Theresa died in 1897 at the age of 24 and was canonized a saint in 1925. Because she offered all her mortifications and sufferings for the missionaries, St. Theresa is now the patroness of all Catholic missions.
Let us imitate this generous saint in her love of God and of souls.

What Strikes Me Most Today

I always wonder if St. Theresa knew she would be canonized one day. My guess is she never even thought about it. I believe she thought about living the Gospel and loving Christ and her neighbor with every ounce of energy she had, but I truly believe she did it simply for love of Jesus, not for any fame or devotion later. That may have been one of her secrets - not worrying about what mark she would leave on this world gave her every minute of every day to simply love the Lord. 24 years is certainly too short a life, but what an awesome job St. Theresa did of making every minute of those 24 years count!

What strikes you most today?
Click on "COMMENTS" below to share your thoughts.


"I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." John 14:6

Pauline Prayer Book for our Haitian Brothers and Sisters

Be Not Afraid

Be Not Afraid
"Fear not, I am with you. From here I want to enlighten. Atone for sin."

Daughters of St. Paul

Daughters of St. Paul
Evangelizing the World!

New faith and family friendly video sharing

New faith and family friendly video sharing
Great Pauline Video Sharing Site

Why?

Why a blog? Why St. Paul? Why do I think I have any business doing this?
We are all on a spiritual journey. We all want that journey to lead us to heaven, to eternity with God. For this journey, we need one another.
The journey so far has led me to read and learn about so many forms of authentic Catholic spirituality - Ignatian, Benedictine, Carmelite, Dominican, Franciscan, etc. My biggest problem was that I came to love each one tremendously. I began reading more and more, spending more and more time at the Daughters of St. Paul bookstore on Watson Road here in St. Louis. Who would have thought my greatest conversion story would take place in a bookstore? Mine was not quite as sudden or dramatic as St. Paul on the road to Damascus, but getting to know the Daughters of St. Paul affected me no less significantly.
The sisters are Eucharistic by nature. The first time I entered the chapel in their bookstore, the Blessed Sacrament was exposed and one of the sisters was on her knees, gazing at Christ, with an indescribably beautiful smile on her face. I had a glimpse of heaven. I knelt at one of the other kneelers and noticed on the wall behind the monstrance the words: "Fear not, I am with you. From here I want to enlighten. Atone for sin." I had that brief moment of absolute certainty that I was on the right path.
Over the last several years I have worked my way through as many books, CD's, DVD's and conversations with the Daughters of St. Paul that time has allowed. Time is at such a premium for all of us. Years ago we were told that with advances in technology we would have much more free time on our hands. We all know this has not been the case. Our lives are busier and more hectic than ever. Even if we are unable to find time to read good books, see enlightening movies or attend lectures and discussions, maybe we could all spend a little time on the internet supporting one another on our faith journeys. Many of you know more about many aspects of Catholic spirituality than I do.
Pope John Paul the Great called us all to a New Evangelization, to share the Gospel with the world. I am hoping we can all be St. Paul in this blog space by sharing Christ with one another and with others. St. Paul travelled to many foreign and often hostile regions to evangelize the world; we are fortunate to be able to use the internet to reach even farther and more quickly.
The idea of using today's means of social communication to spread the Gospel was given to Blessed James Alberione on the night between the centuries (December 31, 1900 - January 1, 1901). He was a 16 year-old seminary student adoring Christ in the Blessed Sacrament when a special light came to him from the Host. Following this, Blessed James Alberione became the founder of the Society of St. Paul priests, the Daughters of St. Paul, the Pious Disciples of the Divine Master, Sisters of Jesus the Good Shepherd, Sisters of the Queen of Apostles, and numerous institutes that are also part of the Pauline family.
So what is Pauline spirituality? In my experience, Pauline spirituality encompasses all the teachings of Sacred Scripture, Sacred Tradition, and love of all the other spiritualities and Saints of the Church. It is the members of the Pauline family who are the happiest people I know! It is loving God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit with all our hearts and souls, through the intercession of Mary, Queen of the Apostles, and St. Paul.
So why St. Paul? I can relate to St. Paul. We first meet him in the New Testament as a sinner. He has a thorn in his side that God decides is best not to take away. I sometimes wish I knew what that thorn was, but it's probably better I don't know. I like to pretend it is one of my many weaknesses or faults. If St. Paul could go from persecuting Christ and His Church to becoming the person responsible for spreading the Gospel and establishing the Church in foreign lands, the least I can do is start a blog. I have been especially inspired by my two favorite bloggers, Sr. Margaret Charles Kerry, fsp, and a Pauline Cooperator named Rae Stabosz. I believe Sr. Margaret and Rae are doing just what St. Paul and Blessed James Alberione would be doing with the internet.
In future blogs (which will be shorter than this first post!), I would like to share writings of St. Paul, Blessed James Alberione, and many others. I look forward to others sharing writings from other Catholic spiritualities and writers. An especially Pauline way of sharing is to point out to one another what aspects particularly speak to each of us.
Another Pauline trait is to pray for one another. My prayer is that we support one another on our path to holiness. Our goal is to glorify God in all that we do - so let's do it!