Monday, December 29, 2008

2008's Seven Hottest Rosaries

Your Most Popular Rosaries - According To Google

According to Google the Rosary is a hot item. How hot? Well, Google Adwords Analytic Tool estimates over 1.5 million monthly web searches include the term Rosary. You can expect to see a 20% increase during October, the month of the Rosary.

This trend shocks many as the 1960's witnessed a strong push to be a more "modern Church" and saw this antiquated devotion as "past its prime." With over 40 years to judge the fruits of the new "modern Church," many are seeing that there could be a direct correlation with with the fall of devotion to the Rosary and the fall of fidelity to the Catholic Church.

People are wanting a change, and according to Google it looks like the change is nothing new but something old. Saints like St. Louis de Montfort and St. Robert Bellarmine referred to the Rosary as "the weapon." And people are longing for a weapon to fight evil. It looks like the Rosary is that weapon.

Here's 2008's Hottest Rosaries.

Note: This list will not include the most searched for Rosary terms like "how to pray the Rosary," just which Rosaries are the most popular.

  • "Rosaries" - This is easily the largest search, mainly because it is a catch-all phrase. Here people are looking for any particular rosary, something that will touch the heart. Over 60,000 monthly searches.
  • "Silver Rosary" - Barely beating out gold Rosary, people are wanting a high end heirloom or they want the beautiful look of silver. There were approximately 28,000 searches with the term silver and rosary.
  • "Gold Rosary" - Nothing is more precious than gold in the earthly realm and when adding gold to the rosary it makes for a beautiful connection between Heaven and earth. 26,000 searches.
  • "Wooden/Wood Rosary" - A well-made wooden rosary has a very good feel to it and is perfect for children or cost-conscious prayer warriors. With the exception of plastic Rosaries, the wooden Rosary is used most as an evangelization tool, given as a free gift to encourage devotion to the Rosary. 5,300 searches.

  • "Crystal Rosary" - This could be the most popular Rosary. Everyone seems to have one of these, be it real or fake. 2,000 searches.
  • "Celtic/Irish Rosary" - Everybody wants to be Irish, or at least have a green rosary (especially on St. Patrick's Day.) 1,600 searches.
  • "Pearl Rosary" - Pearl Rosaries are beautiful. An excellent choice to hand down through the generations. 960 searches.

While contemplating your New Year Resolutions, how about making one that will improve your spiritual life while building up the Body of Christ. Pray the Rosary daily.

Please share this with your friends and family. Permission is granted to copy this article or link to it with full credit and links attached.

God bless you and Happy New Year.
John Quinn

How Do You Stay In God's Divine Will?

My Dear People,

How Do You Overcome Difficulty?

I do not know of any family who is not faced with a particular challenge or difficulty these days. It is a sign of the times. Like the Holy Family, fervent and regular prayer is the ONLY answer. Had not Our Lady and Saint Joseph been obedient to the angel's command to leave for Egypt in the middle of the night, tragedy would have overtaken them.

Remaining in the Divine Will of God the Father is extremely important. How does this happen? Daily, we must surrender our personal way to God's way for us. A simple Morning Offering is a great way to begin your day. Start by acknowledging God as your Father in Heaven. Praise and bless Him for all that you will encounter that day. Ask the Father to lead and guide all of your tasks, decisions, and actions. Cover yourself in the Mantle of the Blessed Mother, and open your heart to Hers. This a a sure way to stay close to God, and His plan for you. Make a New Year's resolution to stay in the Divine Will. You will be glad that you did. Many blessings upon you and your family in the New Year.

Like the Holy Family, may our hearts always be focused upon Our Lord Jesus Christ every moment of our day.

Entrusting you to the care of Our Lady,
Fr. Mark

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Rejoice This Christmas Season

My Dear People,

Be Not Afraid

Angels are very much a part of the Christmas account in the Gospel. The lowly shepherds were greeted by the Holy Angels while tending their sheep. They were told not to be afraid, but to REJOICE. This angelic message is sorely needed today, especially with all of the challenges that lie ahead next year. Like Joseph and Mary, we must be prayerful and obedient, always ready to follow the Lord's Call. It kept the Holy Family from great danger and harm. Pray to have the hearts of Joseph and Mary. May God's holy protection come upon you and all of your families.

Like the Blessed Mother, may we be willing through our good stewardship, to carry Christ into the world.

Entrusting you to the care of Our Lady,
Fr. Mark

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Free Book - St. Nicholas, A Christmas Story

Merry Christmas!

As a thank you to all of you faithful readers, I have found a Christmas Story about good ole St. Nick.

The book is called St. Nicholas: His Legend and His Role in the Christmas

Just click here, it's free!

May God bless you this Christmas season.

  • Feel free to email the free gift to friends and family. They will appreciate it.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

A St. Thomas Did You Know?

Feast of St. Thomas the Apostle

Did you know St. Thomas has a connection to the Nativity of our Lord?

He baptized the three Magi. I never knew.

How about you?

Did you know St. Thomas has small hands? Seriously, I saw them. Click here to find out out why.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Former Seminarian Tragically Dies

A family friend lost their oldest son in a tragic accident. A former seminarian, John Paul was 20 years old and the oldest of 13 kids. The Forget family is one of the most beautiful families I have ever met.

Your prayers are appreciated.

The post comes from St. Louis Catholic and is written by a reader updating wrong information reported by the St. Louis Post.

My son has known John Paul since their high school years and reconnected with him this past fall when John Paul transferred to the same college. He knows everyone that was involved in the accident and the entire Benedictine college community is devastated by what has happened;

Here is how it happened!

which is ......... As they were driving over the MO bridge, the car they were in hit a patch of black ice and spun around so that they were facing oncoming traffic. In the process, the car hit the guardrail which took out the headlights. It was their decision to get out of the car at that point since oncoming traffic was not going to be able to see the car without its lights working.

Because there are no shoulders to pull a car over on a Missouri Bridge, there also isn't a safe place to WALK to safety. They chose to go over to the other side of the guardrail and walk the narrow path between the guardrail and the edge of the bridge.Unfortunately, John Paul lost his footing as he finished going over the guardrail and FELL - not jumped - into the river below. Those with him witnessed his fall, saw him hit the water, and heard his cry for help afterward. It is the last they saw and heard from their friend who was headed home for the Christmas Holiday.

The story is heart-breaking in and of itself. It is even more disgraceful that the story cannot be reported correctly. Our prayers continue to be with John Paul, the Forget family, the friends that were with him, and all those affected by this tragedy. His soul bears an extraordinary light whether it is in this world or waiting for us in the next.

Please email this prayer request to your friends.


The Prophet Elijah

Elias (Hebrew 'Eliahu, "Yahveh is God"; also called Elijah).

The loftiest and most wonderful prophet of the Old Testament. What we know of his public life is sketched in a few popular narratives enshrined, for the most part, in the First (Third) Book of Kings. These narratives, which bear the stamp of an almost contemporary age, very likely took shape in Northern Israel, and are full of the most graphic and interesting details. Every part of the prophet's life therein narrated bears out the description of the writer of Ecclesiasticus: He was "as a fire, and his word burnt like a torch" (48:1). The times called for such a prophet. Under the baneful influence of his Tyrian wife Jezabel, Achab, though perhaps not intending to forsake altogether Yahveh's worship, had nevertheless erected in Samaria a temple to the Tyrian Baal (1 Kings 16:32) and introduced a multitude of foreign priests (xviii 19); doubtless he had occasionally offered sacrifices to the pagan deity, and, most of all, hallowed a bloody persecution of the prophets of Yahveh.

Of Elias's origin nothing is known, except that he was a Thesbite; whether from Thisbe of Nephtali (Tobit 1:2) or from Thesbon of Galaad, as our texts have it, is not absolutely certain, although most scholars, on the authority of the Septuagint and of Josephus, prefer the latter opinion. Some Jewish legends, echoed in a few Christian writings, assert moreover that Elias was of priestly descent; but there is no other warrant for the statement than the fact that he offered sacrifices. His whole manner of life resembles somewhat that of the Nazarites and is a loud protest against his corrupt age. His skin garment and leather girdle (2 Kings, 1, 8), his swift foot (1 Kings 18:46), his habit of dwelling in the clefts of the torrents (xvii,3) or in the caves of the mountains (xix, 9), of sleeping under a scanty shelter (xix, 5), betray the true son of the desert. He appears abruptly on the scene of history to announce to Achab that Yahveh had determined to avenge the apostasy of Israel and her king by bringing a long drought on the land. His message delivered, the prophet vanished as suddenly as he had appeared, and, guided by the spirit of Yahveh, betook himself by the brook Carith, to the east of the Jordan, and the ravens (some critics would translate, however improbable the rendering, "Arabs" or "merchants") "brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening, and he drank of the torrent" (xvii, 6).

After the brook had dried up, Elias, under Divine direction, crossed over to Sarepta, within the Tyrian dominion. There he was hospitably received by a poor widow whom the famine had reduced to her last meal (12); her charity he rewarded by increasing her store of meal and oil all the while the drought and famine prevailed, and later on by restoring her child to life (14-24). For three years there fell no rain or dew in Israel, and the land was utterly barren. Meanwhile Achab had made fruitless efforts and scoured the country in search of Elias. At length the latter resolved to confront the king once more, and, suddenly appearing before Abdias, bade him summon his master (xviii, 7, sq.). When they met, Achab bitterly upbraided the prophet as the cause of the misfortune of Israel. But the prophet flung back the charge: "I have not troubled Israel, but thou and thy father's house, who have forsaken the commandments of the Lord, and have followed Baalim" (xviii, 18). Taking advantage of the discountenanced spirits of the silenced king, Elias bids him to summon the prophets of Baal to Mount Carmel, for a decisive contest between their god and Yahveh. The ordeal took place before a great concourse of people (see MOUNT CARMEL) whom Elias, in the most forcible terms, presses to choose: "How long do you halt between two sides? If Yahveh be God, follow him; but if Baal, then follow him" (xviii, 21). He then commanded the heathen prophets to invoke their deity; he himself would "call on the name of his Lord"; and the God who would answer by fire, "let him be God" (24). An altar had been erected by the Baal-worshippers and the victim laid upon it; but their cries, their wild dances and mad self-mutilations all the day long availed nothing: "There was no voice heard, nor did any one answer, nor regard them as they prayed" (29). Elias, having repaired the ruined altar of Yahveh which stood there, prepared thereon his sacrifice; then, when it was time to offer the evening oblation, as he was praying earnestly, "the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the holocaust, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench" (38). The issue was fought and won. The people, maddened by the success, fell at Elias's command on the pagan prophets and slew them at the brook Cison. That same evening the drought ceased with a heavy downpour of rain, in the midst of which the strange prophet ran before Achab to the entrance of Jezrael.

Elias's triumph was short. The anger of Jezabel, who had sworn to take his life (xix, 2), compelled him to flee without delay, and take his refuge beyond the desert of Juda, in the sanctuary of Mount Horeb. There, in the wilds of the sacred mountain, broken spirited, he poured out his complaint before the Lord, who strengthened him by a revelation and restored his faith. Three commands are laid upon him: to anoint Hazael to be King of Syria, Jehu to be King of Israel, and Eliseus to be his own successor. At once Elias sets out to accomplish this new burden. On his way to Damascus he meets Eliseus at the plough, and throwing his mantle over him, makes him his faithful disciple and inseparable companion, to whom the completion of his task will be entrusted. The treacherous murder of Naboth was the occasion for a new reappearance of Elias at Jezrael, as a champion of the people's rights and of social order, and to announce to Achab his impending doom. Achab's house shall fall. In the place where the dogs licked the blood of Naboth will the dogs lick the king's blood; they shall eat Jezabel in Jezrael; their whole posterity shall perish and their bodies be given to the fowls of the air (xxi, 20-26). Conscience-stricken, Achab quailed before the man of God, and in view of his penance the threatened ruin of his house was delayed. The next time we hear of Elias, it is in connexion with Ochozias, Achab's son and successor. Having received severe injuries in a fall, this prince sent messengers to the shrine of Beelzebub, god of Accaron, to inquire whether he should recover. They were intercepted by the prophet, who sent them back to their master with the intimation that his injuries would prove fatal. Several bands of men sent by the king to capture Elias were stricken by fire from heaven; finally the man of God appeared in person before Ochozias to confirm his threatening message. Another episode recorded by the chronicler (2 Chronicles 21:12) relates how Joram, King of Juda, who had indulged in Baal-worship, received from Elias a letter warning him that all his house would be smitten by a plague, and that he himself was doomed to an early death.

According to 2 Kings 3, Elias's career ended before the death of Josaphat. This statement is difficult -- but not impossible -- to harmonize with the preceeding narrative. However this may be, Elias vanished still more mysteriously than he had appeared. Like Enoch, he was "translated", so that he should not taste death. As he was conversing with his spiritual son Eliseus on the hills of Moab, "a fiery chariot, and fiery horses parted them both asunder, and Elias went up by a whirlwind into heaven" (2 Kings 2:11), and all the efforts to find him made by the sceptic sons of the prophets disbelieving Eliseus's recital, availed nothing. The memory of Elias has ever remained living in the minds both of Jews and Christians. According to Malachias, God preserved the prophet alive to entrust him, at the end of time, with a glorious mission (iv, 5-6): at the New Testament period, this mission was believed to precede immediately the Messianic Advent (Matthew 17:10, 12; Mark 9:11); according to some Christian commentators, it would consist in converting the Jews (St. Jer., in Mal., iv, 5-6); the rabbis, finally, affirm that its object will be to give the explanations and answers hitherto kept back by them. I Mach., ii, 58, extols Elias's zeal for the Law, and Ben Sira entwines in a beautiful page the narration of his actions and the description of his future mission (Sirach 48:1-12). Elias is still in the N.T. the personification of the servant of God (Matthew 16:14; Luke 1:17; 9:8; John 1:21). No wonder, therefore, that with Moses he appeared at Jesus' side on the day of the Transfiguration.

Nor do we find only in the sacred literature and the commentaries thereof evidences of the conspicuous place Elias won for himself in the minds of after-ages. To this day the name of Jebel Mar Elyas, usually given by modern Arabs to Mount Carmel, perpetuates the memory of the man of God. Various places on the mountain: Elias's grotto; El-Khadr, the supposed school of the prophets; El-Muhraka, the traditional spot of Elias's sacrifice; Tell el-Kassis, or Mound of the priests -- where he is said to have slain the priests of Baal -- are still in great veneration both among the Christians of all denominations and among the Moslems. Every year the Druses assemble at El-Muhraka to hold a festival and offer a sacrifice in honour of Elias. All Moslems have the prophet in great reverence; no Druse, in particular, would dare break an oath made in the name of Elias. Not only among them, but to some extent also among the Jews and Christians, many legendary tales are associated with the prophet's memory. The Carmelite monks long cherished the belief that their order could be traced back in unbroken succession to Elias whom they hailed as their founder. Vigorously opposed by the Bollandists, especially by Papenbroeck, their claim was no less vigorously upheld by the Carmelites of Flanders, until Pope Innocent XII, in 1698, deemed it advisable to silence both contending parties. Elias is honoured by both the Greek and Latin Churches on 20 July.

The old stichometrical lists and ancient ecclesiastical writings (Const. Apost., VI, 16; Origen, Comm. in Matthew 27:9; Euthalius; Epiphan., Haer., 43) mention an apocryphal "Apocalypse of Elias", citations from which are said to be found in 1 Corinthians 2:9, and Ephesians 5:14. Lost to view since the early Christian centuries, this work was partly recovered in a Coptic translation found (1893) by Maspéro in a monastery of Upper Egypt. Other scraps, likewise in Coptic, have since been also discovered. What we possess now of this Apocalypse -- and it seems that we have by far the greater part of it -- was published in 1899 by G. Steindorff; the passages cited in 1 Corinthians 2:9, and Ephesians 5:14, do not appear there; the Apocalypse on the other hand, has a striking analogy with the Jewish "Sepher Elia".

taken from the Catholic Encyclopedia

Thursday, December 18, 2008

msnbc In God We Trust poll

Take One Second and Take the Poll!

Here's your chance to let the media know where the people stand on our
faith in God, as a nation. NBC is taking a poll on "In God We Trust" to
stay on our American currency. Please send this to every Christian you
know so they can vote on this important subject. Please do it right
away, before NBC takes this off the web page.

Poll is still open so you can vote:

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Nativity Art Portraits

The Nativity Of Our Lord In Art

The Navity In Art

St. Robert Bellarmine Quote: The Role Of Mary

  • Tell me what is your favorite Nativity portrait?
  • Don't be afraid to share this with others.

Guadete Sunday

My Dear People,

Guadete Sunday - The Day of Rejoicing

Guadete Sunday is a day of great rejoicing. The Lord is near. God is with us. St. Paul tells us that we should REJOICE always. Pray without ceasing. We are encouraged to give thanks in many ways. As this calendar year ends, we do have much to be grateful for to Almighty God. We still have the freedom to worship in public and share our Catholic faith with others. The Lord has blessed us with food, shelter, and clothing. Our regular income has remained consistent with last year's totals. We are maintaining our annual budget and meeting our expenses.

Our outreach to the poor in our area, through our various ministries, continues to grow. We just completed a beautiful Advent Mission with Mark Mallett preparing us for the Birth of Jesus, Mary, Our Mother in Heaven, continues to intercede for us before Her Son. St. Michael the Archangel is always protecting our parishes and our families. What greater gifts could Our Lord give to us? Please take time during the course of this week, to rejoice and give God thanks for all of His Providential care and Divine Mercy. Rejoice in the Lord always.

May always we strive to be grateful for the many blessings that God has shared with us over the course of this past year.. Rejoice in the Lord always...again, I say REJOICE.

Entrusting you to the care of Our Lady,
Fr. Mark

Friday, December 12, 2008

Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Zec 2:17
Silence, all mankind, in the presence of the LORD! For he stirs forth from his holy dwelling.

Rv 11:19a; 12:1-6a, 10ab
God’s temple in heaven was opened,
and the ark of his covenant could be seen in the temple.

A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun,
with the moon under her feet,
and on her head a crown of twelve stars.
She was with child and wailed aloud in pain as she labored to give birth.
Then another sign appeared in the sky;
it was a huge red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns,
and on its heads were seven diadems.
Its tail swept away a third of the stars in the sky
and hurled them down to the earth.
Then the dragon stood before the woman about to give birth,
to devour her child when she gave birth.
She gave birth to a son, a male child,
destined to rule all the nations with an iron rod.
Her child was caught up to God and his throne.
The woman herself fled into the desert
where she had a place prepared by God.

Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say:
“Now have salvation and power come,
and the Kingdom of our God
and the authority of his Anointed.”

More about Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Monday, December 8, 2008

Be Like John

My Dear People,

Be Like John, Be Like Jesus

"A voice crying out in the wilderness.. prepare ye the way of the Lord!" Mark's Gospel today reminds us that John the Baptist spent most of his adult life, clearing a path for the Messiah to enter his heart. He lived an austere life freed from distraction. His meals were meager. His home was barren. He owned little. As John was baptizing in the Jordan River, Jesus comes to him. As the Holy Spirit filled John in his mother's womb, at the presence of Jesus in Mary's womb; again the Holy Spirit consumes John. The Baptist states, "I am not even worthy to touch the sandals on your feet." Jesus's sandals were the most undesirable part of His attire. Like boots in the barn, sandals picked up everything undesirable in the street.

John recognizes the Divine in Our Lord. Jesus asks to be baptized by John. Jesus asks this of his cousin in obedience to His Father's will. Our Lord was teaching us how to access the grace of eternity through our Baptism. If you were baptized, you have your parents to thank for that gift. Baptism opens all the avenues of grace that leads us to eternal life. Be like John, emptied of yourself. Be like Jesus, obedient to the Father. They both point in the direction that leads us to everlasting LIFE.

As good stewards, may we strive to embrace the simplicity of St. John the Baptist, more than the materialism of our age.

Entrusting you to the care of Our Lady,
Fr. Mark

Brown Scapular Miracle!

A Brown Scapular Miracle

Discover How This Brown Scapular
Story Stopped a Fire Dead In It's Tracks

Some missionaries from Perigueux
were preaching a mission in 1656, at Saint
Aulay, a town in Saintonge. A fire broke
out in a house about ten o'clock 'at night,
and raged with such violence, that a great
number of the inhabitants collected on the
spot to give all the help they could under the

Among the crowd was aworthy clergyman,
who (recollecting that atPerigueux, about
twenty years before, a great fire had been
miraculously extinguished by a Scapular,
which event had been inquired into, and attested
by the magistrateof the town), desired a
young man, remarkable for his faith and
piety to take off his Scapular to throw it
into the midst of the flames. The priest
added, "that the fire will be soon extinguished
through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin."

The young man hastened to obey and threw
his Scapular into the part of the fire where
it was raging most violently. At the same
moment the flames seemed to ascend like a
whirlwind, and the fire ceased burning. The Scapular
was found intact on the following day, in
the midst of the burnt remains of the house.

The miracle was so apparent, that some Calvinists
who were present, said among them
selves, "that young man is a sorcerer," while
the Catholics, on the other hand, praised
God, and admired the virtue of the Scapular.

Want another Brown Scapular Miracle? Learn how an immoral soldier was given a miraculous chance to repent and die in God's Mercy.

Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

Immaculate Conception

The doctrine

In the Constitution Ineffabilis Deus of 8 December, 1854, Pius IX pronounced and defined that the Blessed Virgin Mary "in the first instance of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace granted by God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the human race, was preserved exempt from all stain of original sin."
"The Blessed Virgin Mary..."

The subject of this immunity from original sin is the person of Mary at the moment of the creation of her soul and its infusion into her body.

" the first instance of her conception..."

The term conception does not mean the active or generative conception by her parents. Her body was formed in the womb of the mother, and the father had the usual share in its formation. The question does not concern the immaculateness of the generative activity of her parents. Neither does it concern the passive conception absolutely and simply (conceptio seminis carnis, inchoata), which, according to the order of nature, precedes the infusion of the rational soul. The person is truly conceived when the soul is created and infused into the body. Mary was preserved exempt from all stain of original sin at the first moment of her animation, and sanctifying grace was given to her before sin could have taken effect in her soul.

"...was preserved exempt from all stain of original sin..."

The formal active essence of original sin was not removed from her soul, as it is removed from others by baptism; it was excluded, it never was in her soul. Simultaneously with the exclusion of sin. The state of original sanctity, innocence, and justice, as opposed to original sin, was conferred upon her, by which gift every stain and fault, all depraved emotions, passions, and debilities, essentially pertaining to original sin, were excluded. But she was not made exempt from the temporal penalties of Adam -- from sorrow, bodily infirmities, and death.
" a singular privilege and grace granted by God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the human race."

The immunity from original sin was given to Mary by a singular exemption from a universal law through the same merits of Christ, by which other men are cleansed from sin by baptism. Mary needed the redeeming Saviour to obtain this exemption, and to be delivered from the universal necessity and debt (debitum) of being subject to original sin. The person of Mary, in consequence of her origin from Adam, should have been subject to sin, but, being the new Eve who was to be the mother of the new Adam, she was, by the eternal counsel of God and by the merits of Christ, withdrawn from the general law of original sin. Her redemption was the very masterpiece of Christ's redeeming wisdom. He is a greater redeemer who pays the debt that it may not be incurred than he who pays after it has fallen on the debtor.

Such is the meaning of the term "Immaculate Conception."

Taken from the Catholic Encyclopedia

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The Hour of Grace

Tomorrow is December 8th, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, a Holy
Day of Obligation.

It is also the day on which in 1947, Our Blessed Mother gave to us the
Hour of Grace.

Our Lady said as follows: "It is my wish that every year, on 8th
at noon, the HOUR OF GRACE FOR THE WORLD be celebrated. Many divine and bodily graces will be received through this devotion. Our Lord, my Divine Son Jesus, will send His overflowing mercy if good people will pray continuously for their sinful brother….. it is my wish that the HOUR OF GRACE FOR THE WORLD be made known and spread throughout the world. If anyone is unable to visit his church, yet will pray at noon at home, he will also receive graces through me…..will find a secure heavenly ladder and receive protection and grace through my motherlyheart. "

Below is the formula for the Hour of Grace. Our Lady promised
She will hear any prayer we make at this time.


1. Day and time of the Hour of Grace: December 8th, Feast of the
Immaculate Conception,
to be started at 12:00 noon and continuing until
1:00 p.m. for one full hour of prayer.

2. During this hour, the person making the "Hour of Grace" either at
home or at Church must
put away all distractions (do not answer the
telephones, or answer any doors, or do anything but totally concentrate
on your union with God during this special Hour of Grace).

3. Begin the Hour of Grace by praying three (3) times the 51st Psalm
with outstretched arms (Psalm 51 is included below).

4. The rest of the Hour of Grace may be spent in silent communication
with God meditating upon the Passion of Jesus, praying the Holy Rosary,
praising God in your own way, or by using favorite prayers, singing
hymns, meditating upon other Psalms, etc.

Please copy and distribute this message. Remember to pray for your
country during this hour.*
The Blessed Virgin has requested that her
important message be sent throughout the entire world. Please help her
mission: that all souls be drawn to GOD, and that JESUS will be loved in
every heart. This is the perpetual song of her heart. Let it also be

Ps.51 Verses 1 to 19

    [1] Have mercy on me, O God,
    according to thy steadfast love;
    according to thy abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.
    [2] Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
    and cleanse me from my sin!
    [3] For I know my transgressions,
    and my sin is ever before me.
    [4] Against thee, thee only, have I sinned,
    and done that which is evil in thy sight,
    so that thou art justified in thy sentence
    and blameless in thy judgment.
    [5] Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,
    and in sin did my mother conceive me.
    [6] Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward being;
    therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.
    [7] Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
    wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
    [8] Fill me with joy and gladness;
    let the bones which thou hast broken rejoice.
    [9] Hide thy face from my sins,
    and blot out all my iniquities.
    [10] Create in me a clean heart, O God,
    and put a new and right spirit within me.
    [11] Cast me not away from thy presence,
    and take not thy holy Spirit from me.
    [12] Restore to me the joy of thy salvation,
    and uphold me with a willing spirit.
    [13] Then I will teach transgressors thy ways,
    and sinners will return to thee.
    [14] Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God,
    thou God of my salvation,
    and my tongue will sing aloud of thy deliverance.
    [15] O Lord, open thou my lips,
    and my mouth shall show forth thy praise.
    [16] For thou hast no delight in sacrifice;
    were I to give a burnt offering, thou wouldst not be pleased.
    [17] The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit;
    a broken and contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
    [18] Do good to Zion in thy good pleasure;
    rebuild the walls of Jerusalem,
    [19] then wilt thou delight in right sacrifices,
    in burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings;
    then bulls will be offered on thy altar.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

God Bless Courageous Bishops

Texas bishop condemns sterilization,
rips FOCA, urges Catholics
to rally against culture of death

Tyler, Texas, Dec. 5, 2008 ( - Bishop Alvaro Corrada of Tyler, Texas, has issued a powerful public statement condemning surgical sterilization and warning against legislation that could deprive health-care workers of their right to refuse involvement in such immoral procedures.

Bishop Corrada indicated that his concern not only about sterilizations, but about the broader question of whether Catholic individuals and Catholic institutions will stand up against pressure to engage in immoral medical procedures. He expressed particular concern about the federal Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) championed by President-elect Obama, noting that the legislation could require doctors to cooperate in procedures that they find objectionable, including abortion and euthanasia as well as sterilization.

The bishop opened his statement by saying that he wants to promote a strong Christian witness in the Texas diocese. He says that he is "particularly concerned that our witness remain strong in the field of health care."

However the bishop cites two "serious threats" to the clarity of the Catholic witness in the health-care field. The first is the involvement of Church-related hospitals in sterilizations. The second is FOCA which "denies freedom of conscience to health-care workers and institutions to refrain from participating in medical procedures contrary to human dignity."

How is the good Bishop doing on vocations?

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

A Light To the Lost

November 30, 2008

My Dear People,

Be Christ's Light This Advent

The Advent Wreath is a holy reminder of how we are to become the light of Christ. All four candles represents a Sunday in Advent. As we journey toward the birth of Christ, we are to allow Christ to increase in us. At the Manger, we present ourselves to Him. Christ's Light then becomes one of us.

At no other time in the history of the United States, have we so desperately needed Christ's LIGHT. SO many people have lost their way. Jesus is the only WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIGHT. Mark's Gospel tells us this Sunday to be sober and alert. We are to be on the watch. When we have a hunger for the Lord, we long to see His face. Christ then comes to bring us His Light. Hunger for Christ this Advent season. Share Christ's light with one another.

May we prepare for Christ's coming as faithful servants doing the work God has intended us to do.

Entrusting you to the care of Our Lady,
Fr. Mark

Monday, December 1, 2008

A Profile In Courage

A Profile In Courage - Homily by Rev. Noah Waldman

Our Lord asks us to follow him not only in word and promise, but in deed and action, even when that action requires heroic courage. In this regard I would like to speak about a hero of mine: Michael Cardinal von Faulhaber, the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Munich from 1917 to his death in 1952. (As an interesting side note, the last man Faulhaber was to ordain to the priesthood was one Joseph Ratzinger, our present Holy Father.)

As you might imagine, the years between 1933 and 1945, marked by the reign of Hitler, were especially difficult for Faulhaber. However, rather than choose to remain quiet out of fear of the Nazis, Faulhaber instead chose courage. At every opportunity, he spoke out against the crimes of the Nazis, on occasion risking his own life to do so.

His Advent sermons of 1933, delivered in the vast Munich Cathedral, the Frauenkirche, drew thousands of Munich citizens—standing room only—who came to listen to the Cardinal fearlessly challenge National Socialism, to assert the rights and freedoms of the Catholic Church, and to call for the protection of the Jewish People.

By the 1940s when Hitler’s final solution became clear to all, Faulhaber ordered yellow armbands with the Star of David to be placed on the statues of Christ and Mary throughout his archdiocese, in specific response to the Nazi treatment of Jews. Faulhaber’s courage made the Nazis cower. No one in the Gestapo dare take these yellow arm bands down. So, Munich, the birthplace of the Nazi movement, became the center of Nazi resistance. And although Dachau was located just ten miles outside Munich’s city limits, within Munich Hitler and his policies were weakened severely by the courage of a single man.

It remains one of the perplexing questions of history, how it could be that a great people such as the Germans could have been fooled by a man with such a diabolical political agenda. Especially Germany, the country of the Frederick the Great the philosopher-king, which was arguably the most enlightened and free nation in Europe. Because of reparations which Germany had to repay as a result of the Treaty of Versailles, Germany’s economy was in freefall. (If you think the current crisis in the Unites States is a problem, what we are enduing is nothing by comparison.). The German currency of the time, the Reichsmark which was introduced in 1924, was worth less than the paper it was printed on. Hyperinflation was so pronounced that it was cheaper to burn money than firewood.

So when Hitler came to power he fulfilled much of his agenda. He did revive the German economy, almost miraculously. Hitler also reestablished the order to a society falling into disarray, and he grave Germans a new sense of pride. So, in a sense, Hitler “saved” Germany—or so it seemed to many in 1934.

But Hitler’s plan to "save" Germany was founded upon of principles of utmost evil: The killing of the innocent; genocide of neighboring peoples and the plundering of nations; eugenic activity on handicapped, the infirm and the aged, all in the name of progress toward a "master race"—a utopian ideal to create a society which would last not for 1000 but for 10,000 years.

Hitler wanted the Church to remain quiet in the face of all this, and to ultimately replace the Church with what amounted to a new religion based on German identity. Hitler’s desire for the Church was a cry many of us hear today: The Church should not interfere with policies of the state.

We see through the lens of history, that there are times when the Church must speak out against the state to defend the rights of those who have no voice. When the matter at hand is the killing of the innocent, or the manipulation of human life for the purpose of a national agenda to create a master race of people who will never succumb to sickness and be as beautiful as the models and stars on the television and internet, or the objectification of women—the Church must speak out.

History has not looked with any kindness on members of the Catholic clergy or hierarchy which, during Nazi domination, did little or nothing to help the plight of the Jewish people. History has condemned them, and rightly so.

We as members of the Church are the hands of Jesus, our mouths are the instruments of his voice. Jesus, who always spoke out against injustice and oppression, asks and requires us to be agents of change in the world, to bring about policies in our own nation and in the world that will defend human life, most especially for the innocent and weak who have no one to speak for them.

As a Jew who became Catholic in my early 20s, one of the most painful issues I have had to deal with in my own soul and with speaking with my own family is how to answer the question: Why didn’t the Church do more to stop Hitler and to help the Jews? Frankly, we know the Church did a great deal, probably more than any other institution in the world to help the Jewish people.

But questions remain. How could so many German Christians at the time have supported Hitler? How could they have viewed their economic prosperity, the strengthening of their public institutions and army, and the pride of their own nation as being of greater value than the killing of the innocent? Is there any way to defend that? Is economic prosperity more important that life? Is the right to a particular quality of life more important than the right to life itself? Who will define that quality? Is mass murder allowable if the state is feeding the hungry?

Looking back at the Third Reich, I think all of us in this church today, and probably everyone in the United States of America would agree that there is no excuse for what happened in Germany.

But then I ask you: When we go to the polls on November 4, why will so many Catholics not support the overturn of Roe vs. Wade? Yes, there are many issues facing our country, many of them serious. War is serious, and so is the matter of immigration, economic reform, taxation, the need for health care, and so on. But we must keep in mind that since 1973 when the Supreme Court decided that a human being in the womb was not protected because of property and privacy rights implied in the 14th amendment, we have as a nation aborted nearly 50 million people.

Let us also not forget the 30-40 million women whose lives have been scarred because they were told that this procedure would be good for them and help them, and who day after day have to convince themselves somehow that they are forgiven.

Before I conclude this long homily—and I thank you for your attention today—I want to say to anyone here affected by abortion that Jesus has the power to make all things new: It is Jesus’ job to forgive sinners. God understands the pain of loss and human frailty, which is why his forgiveness and mercy towards those who have suffered through abortion is so abundant. The Father forgives as soon as you ask. But emotional healing takes many, many years, and it hurts terribly. Thank God that today, the pro-life movement has greatest love and sympathy for women and those who have gone through abortion. Project Rachel here in St. Louis is a place of tremendous comfort and peace. Thank God also that the pro-life movement and the Catholic Church has in place real programs to help women who choose not to have an abortion, so that they can survive financially and medically through such difficult times. We must never forget that our goal to stop abortion, while necessary, is only the first part of our call. The second part is for us to support with love and financial assistance the women and families who will struggle to raise their children in the face of seemingly insurmountable struggles. It takes strength to choose life in our world today, and for us to be effective ministers of the love of Jesus, not only must we protect life, we must be present and willing to help nurture that new life into adulthood; we must be there especially for the poor and for single mothers.

Moreover, the Church does not condemn those who have suffered through the abortion experience. Rather, the Church stands by such people to offer them forgiveness, compassion to know their sins are forgiven, and that God loves them dearly. The Church, however, does condemn those who willfully have made abortion the law of the land, who support its spread, and who propagate this terrible lie—this "big lie"—that causes death and personal loss.

I pray that, when historians looks back at the late 20th and early 21st century and the Catholic Church, they will be able to say that it was our Church that stopped the brutal killing of the innocent; that it was our Church that was the true voice of women’s rights; that it was our Church that never abandoned young mothers and young children; that it was our Church that shone the light of Jesus’ love in the world’s darkness.

You and I have the obligation, therefore, to speak out against the lie that abortion is not killing; the lie that abortion is good for women.

We do this primarily by praying to end abortion; we do this by supporting women who have endured abortions; we do this by assisting women who courageously choose to endure difficult pregnancies; we do this by refraining from investing in companies that promote abortion and human manipulation; we do this by abstaining and opposing anything in the entertainment industry that treats women as objects whose feelings and personal worth are disregarded; and, finally, we do this according to our votes.

I will close this long homily now with two questions. First: If every Catholic in Germany had opposed Hitler, would have been a Holocaust? The answer requires some nuance. Many Christians were under compulsion to join the Nazi Party, lest they experience utter loss of livelihood, and often the abduction and murder of family remembers. However, Cardinal Faulhaber’s courage and the example of Munich demonstrates the triumph of human dignity in the face of tyranny: If every diocese in Germany had a man as brave as Cardinal Faulhaber, I do not think the Holocaust could have happened. No tyrant, however brutal, can carry out any program without the consent of the governed; the power of a leader is proportionate to people’s willingness to be led.

The second and final question, therefore, is this: If every Catholic in the United States showed the courage of Cardinal Faulhaber, and voted only pro-life, what do you think would happen?

Given at Sts. Joachim and Ann Church, St. Charles, MO