- The Rosary Foundation (Catholic Website of the Week)
- The Spiritual Power of Our Lady's Church Approved Apparations (Diocesan News and BEYOND)
- Helpful Hints Submitted by Wives--Husbands Please Read (Helpful Hints for Life)
Catholic Good News
Receiving the Gospel, Serving God and Neighbor
PRAYER, Fasting, and Almsgiving
“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer,
believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”
The three tools to truly change this Lent are prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. And, if there is one thing we can never do enough of, it is pray.
Prayer needs not be only time in church, on our knees, or at specific times. Prayer needs to become a way of life. We must strive to be constantly united to Jesus Christ in our way of living, that we “pray always.” How wonderful it would be if praying became as natural as breathing.
I was at a profession of a dear friend of mine some years ago, when she united herself formally to a Carmelite convent. She pointed out to me that some of the nuns that ‘never break prayer.’ Even if they talk to you or do some task they keep themselves fully united to their Lord in constant prayer, with heart and mind raised to Him. I soon experienced what she was pointing out to me as I spoke with one of the Carmelites.
While the average Catholic is not called to this specifically, you and I are called to strive to pray constantly by uniting whatever we think, say, or do to Jesus Christ, the REAL person who loves us more than others do and more than we love ourselves. That is the challenge and joy of the Good News!
Peace and prayers in Jesus through Mary, loved by Saint Joseph,
P.S. This past Sunday was the Second Sunday of Lent. >> Readings
- the elevation of the mind and heart to God (in praise of his glory; a petition made to God for some desired good, or in thanksgiving for a good received, or in intercession for others before God)
2) I need to know you call my name in your prayers
3) Hold me when I cry
4) Show and tell me that you love me often, and leave no doubt about it in my mind.
5) Show me your approval when I make a decision that is good.
6) Talk to me about what's important to you and to me.
7) Listen to me and don't treat me like I am stupid and don't know anything.
8) I need intimacy, and not just sexually. Anyone can have relations, but it takes a REAL man to be intimate.
9) Make me feel wanted and trusted in the things I can do for you.
10) Don't try to make me like your mother.
11) Remember that I am your "Help Mate". I am not someone to be stomped on and just used for your "whims".
12) Understand that I like to have our family near and want all relationships to be what God intended.
13) Comfort and hold me.
14) Be a one woman man.
15) Take the spiritual lead in giving me (and our children) direction and guidance.
16) Ask me for my help - it is good to be regarded as a helper and useful.
17) Make appropriate adjustments to your lifestyle and preferences as a married / family man.
18) Treat me with love and respect in the company of others.
19) Show appreciation and affirmation.
20) Tell me you love me often, even if you think I should already know this.
21) Show affection for no "reason" at all.
22) Make me feel as though I am still desirable.
23) Be devoted to caring, giving protection, and affirming your love.
24) Encourage me to realize my goals, and don't put me down for trying something new. Try to understand how I feel and listen to me when I try to tell you something that is important to us or that is hurting us.
“Prayer is both a gift of grace and a determined response on our part. It always presupposes effort. The great figures of prayer of the Old Covenant before Christ, as well as the Mother of God, the saints, and he himself, all teach us this: prayer is a battle. Against whom? Against ourselves and against the wiles of the tempter who does all he can to turn man away from prayer, away from union with God. We pray as we live, because we live as we pray. If we do not want to act habitually according to the Spirit of Christ, neither can we pray habitually in his name. The "spiritual battle" of the Christian's new life is inseparable from the battle of prayer.”
Catechism of the Catholic Church #2725
The Rosary Foundation - Pray the Rosary for World Peace
Welcome to eRosary, the official homepage of The Rosary Foundation. We are a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting rosary prayer and the benefits gained by ...
The Rosary Foundation is a charitable organization that is dedicated to promoting the benefits gained through recitation of the rosary. Its mission is to enlighten the world about the special graces available to all those who pray the rosary.
The Rosary Foundation organizes and manages several Rosary Awareness campaigns in an effort to promote the use of the rosary. Its members promote the rosary through search engine marketing and online media advertising; they promote prayer offline via word-of-mouth; they also promote prayer for several nonprofit charity organizations.
Diocesan News AND BEYOND
Some choose to pray the rosary daily. Others pray the Stations of the Cross. Some might even sing the Stabat Mater along the way.
Mary is an excellent companion during the Lenten season, especially her messages and apparitions.
Prayer, penance, and almsgiving are the three pillars of the Lenten season. In Our Lady’s approved apparitions, she directs us to these pillars and encourages us to live them.
In the village of Beauraing in Belgium, Our Lady appeared to five children. She told the children to “pray, pray very much, pray always.”
In other apparitions, Our Lady told the seers for what or who they should pray.
In Fatima, she requested they pray the rosary for peace in the world. In Champion, Wisconsin, she requested they offer their holy communion for the conversion of sinners.
Not only did Our Lady tell us who or what to pray for, she requested different methods of prayer. Mary encourages us to become more prayerful, as well as intercessors for others.
At Fatima, she told the three children to offer their small sacrifices out of love for God and the Immaculate in reparation for sin and the conversion of sinners.
We fast and make acts of self-denial throughout Lent. Be sure to offer these sacrifices to God as a prayer. As you do so, Mary will accompany you on your Lenten journey, for she encouraged us to do penances.
The visionaries in Our Lady’s apparitions came from poor families. St. Bernadette’s family was incredibly poor. In Lourdes, the sick and those poor in health come and pray for healing.
In 1933 when Mary appeared to Mariette Beco in Banneux, Belgium, she told the child she was the “Virgin of the Poor.”
During this season of almsgiving, we journey with a woman who identifies with the poor, and allow those who are poor financially, physically, spiritually, or emotionally, to turn to her motherly intercession.
Throughout your Lenten journey, consider doing so in prayer with the Blessed Virgin. And if you’d like, listen to Mary’s words from her approved apparitions and allow them to guide your life, not only during Lent, but for the rest of your life.
“Sunday mornings I would peer out of the balcony of my house, and when the people were going by on their way to Mass, I would spit on them. I told them that the Church was a sect that wanted their money,” explained the priest, who ministers in the Diocese of Almeria, Spain.
Fr. Juan José's parents were not believers, and he had received no religious formation, but he said they did not raise him to be intolerant. In fact, he says he does not know where he got all those ideas, because the perception he had of the Church and God was that of a “multinational corporation with branches in every neighborhood to extract money, like a sect.”
“I was absolutely anticlerical, I was the first student in my school and the town of Carboneras, Almeria Province, to never be taught Religion because when I was 8 or 9, I chose the alternative course which was Ethics. In the following years, I went on convincing my friends to quit Religion classes and to take Ethics with me. In the end, my whole class ended up being taught Ethics and none of them Religion.”
But what he never imagined is that the end of his journey would be to help his friends to come back to the Church. Fr. Juan José remembers quite well that the first day he went into a Catholic church, “I went to make fun of those who had invited me.”
“It was in January 1995, some friends from class invited me to a Catholic Charismatic Renewal prayer group at the parish. Obviously I told them I wasn't planning on going because I didn't want them to brainwash me. For a whole month they persisted. I finally gave in – it was a Thursday in February 1995 when I went into a Catholic church for the first time.”
A golden box
A lot of his friends were there, and he was surprised because “they were all looking at a golden box at the back of the church. I didn't know what it was, but I thought it was where the parish priest kept the money.”
That golden box was the Tabernacle.
Fr. Juan José says that he came to make fun of them because “I thought they were crazy. Inside, I was laughing at them a lot, but I was polite and concealed it. But I decided to come back the following Thursday to laugh at them some more.”
And so one Thursday after another, Fr. Juan José was letting go of his prejudices against the Church and religion.
“The pastor seemed to me to be a very wise man who was helping the people,” he told CNA. And little by little, the love of God was penetrating his heart: “I was 15 years old and I started to sing at Mass, which meant I would attend Mass on Saturdays. I liked being in front of the tabernacle and little by little, I realized that God existed and loved me. I felt the love of God. The Charismatic Renewal group, which I had come to make fun of, helped me a lot.”
“My eyes were being opened and I saw that God was not a legend or story for the weak, but that he existed and that he was supporting and guiding me. I experienced that he loved me so much that he wanted me for himself and was calling me,” he recalled.
“I am yours for whatever you need”
Fr. Juan José had been baptized and made his First Communion because of his grandparents' wishes, but he did not have a relationship with God after that. “I made my Confirmation as I was right in the midst of the process of conversion, and it was a genuine gift. That day I told the Lord, 'I am yours for whatever you need.' My mother came but my father did not. It was a unique moment in my life to receive the Holy Spirit and to put my trust in the Lord.”
For months, the young Juan José was resisting the call to the priesthood. “I told the Lord that I didn't want any hassles and to quit talking to me. Until I had to make a decision and it was to follow him, becoming a priest.”
One Saturday afternoon when he was 17, Fr. Juan José told his father he wanted to go to the seminary. His father beat him and said that “he would be a priest over his dead body.”
“They did not understand that I would want to be a priest. In fact, my father offered to pay for me to go to college in the United States but (he told me) he would never pay for the seminary.”
In such a difficult moment, Fr. Juan José recalled that all he could think of was the prayer of Saint Teresa of Avila: “Let nothing disturb you, nothing frighten you. All you need is God” and when his father stopped rebuking him, the young man gave him a hug and said to him, “I knew you were going to react like that, but I also knew that one day you'd understand.”
In fact, his father went so far as to threaten to report the pastor to the police if kept helping his son discern his vocation. “My father was trying everything, but the Lord is stronger,” he said.
To obey his father, Fr. Juan José could not start the seminary, and so he began to study teaching at the University of Almeria. For years he was patient, and continued to be faithful to his vocation to the priesthood. Until one day in May 1999, as he recalled, his mother told him that she had spoken to his father and that finally he would let him enter the seminary. “I began to cry and cry. I remember when I told the pastor about it he said “welcome” and gave me a great big hug.”
In September 2000, he finally entered the seminary.
In 2006, Fr.Juan José was ordained in the Almeria cathedral and his father even attended the ceremony. “In no way did he want me to become a priest, but he saw that I was happy and even though he was totally anticlerical, he decided that the happiness of his son came before his ideology and if I was happy, even though he didn't understand it, he would have to accept it. “
In fact, he recalled that two years ago, “before dying, my father received the Anointing of the Sick. And it was I who administered it to him.”
“When somebody tells me he doesn't believe in God, I always tell him that neither did I believe in Him, but I was mistaken, because I have discovered the genuine happiness that Jesus has given to me. If you're not completely happy, ask the Lord to help you, because only He will give you the happiness that your heart needs.”
“Initially when they offered me this (job) I thought I would find myself confronted with grouchy, perhaps mean people,” said volunteer barber Danielle Mancuso.
“Instead, I discovered a truly tremendous humanity.”
“You see these poor people out in the middle of the street, discarded. Then, you speak to them, and they're human,” he said, recounting his first day.
Officially inaugurated on Feb. 16, the facilities provide the opportunity for homeless individuals to have their hair cut each Monday – a day when barber shops in Italy are traditionally closed – by volunteer barbers. Meanwhile, the shower services will be offered daily, with the exception of Wednesday due to the large crowds which attend the weekly general audience.
“I cut my hair, took a shower, beard, everything. It's wonderful!” 51-year-old Gregorio from Poland, who's been living in Rome for 13 years, told EWTN News.
Construction began in November on new showers and bathrooms under the colonnades of St. Peter’s Square.
Many barbers have volunteered with enthusiasm, including two barbers from the national Italian organization that transports the sick to Lourdes, France and other international shrines (UNITALSI). Other volunteers are finishing their final year in barber school.
“It's been a great lesson for me,” said Andrea Valeriano, an UNITALSI volunteer. “Everyone has waited (their turn) calmly. And I've seen a lot solidarity among them.”
Papal almoner Archbishop Konrad Krajewski spearheaded the reconstruction of St. Peter's square bathrooms to include the shower and barbershop facilities, which have witnessed a substantial response since their opening.
The Polish bishop is charged with the dual responsibility of carrying out acts of charity for the poor and raising the money to fund them. When the archbishop was appointed, Pope Francis urged him not to stay at his desk but rather to be an active worker for the benefit of the poor.
Vatican Insider reported that Archbishop Krajewski received his inspiration for the showers after taking a homeless man to dinner in order to celebrate his birthday. The man, who turned 50, told the archbishop that finding food in the city is easy, but staying clean was not.
“Prayer to Jesus is answered by him already during his ministry, through signs that anticipate the power of his death and Resurrection: Jesus hears the prayer of faith, expressed in words (the leper, Jairus, the Canaanite woman, the good thief) or in silence (the bearers of the paralytic, the woman with a hemorrhage who touches his clothes, the tears and ointment of the sinful woman). The urgent request of the blind men, "Have mercy on us, Son of David" or "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!" has-been renewed in the traditional prayer to Jesus known as the Jesus Prayer: "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner!" Healing infirmities or forgiving sins, Jesus always responds to a prayer offered in faith: "Your faith has made you well; go in peace."
St. Augustine wonderfully summarizes the three dimensions of Jesus' prayer: "He prays for us as our priest, prays in us as our Head, and is prayed to by us as our God. Therefore let us acknowledge our voice in him and his in us."
Catechism of the Catholic Church #2616
-I saw an ad for burial plots, and thought to myself this is the last thing I need.
-Just burned 2,000 calories. That's the last time I leave brownies in the oven while I nap.
-I'm great at multitasking. I can waste time, be unproductive, and procrastinate all at once.
For My Next Impression…
I’m now in high school, so when I ran into my third-grade teacher, I doubted she would remember me.
“Hi, Miss Jones,” I said.
“Hi, Eddie,” she replied.
“So you do remember me?” I asked.
“Sure. You don’t always leave a good impression, but it is a lasting one.”
They Still Fit
I don’t want to brag or make anybody jealous or anything, but I can still fit into the earrings I wore in high school.
A man is driving down to New York to see a show, and he's stopped in Connecticut for speeding. The state trooper smells alcohol on his breath, sees an empty wine bottle on the floor, and asks, "Sir, have you been drinking?"
The man replies, "Just water."
The trooper asks, "Then, why do I smell wine?"
The man looks down at the bottle and exclaims, "Good Lord, Jesus has done it again, just like at the Wedding Feast of Cana!"
After a church service on Sunday morning, a young boy suddenly announced to his mother,
"Mom, I've decided to become a minister when I grow up."
"That's okay with us, but what made you decide that?"
"Well," said the little boy, "I have to go to church on Sunday anyway,
And I figure it will be more fun to stand up and yell, than to sit and listen."
The Sunday School Teacher asks,
"Now, Johnny, tell me frankly do you say prayers before eating?"
"No ma'am," little Johnny replies, I don't have to.
My mom is a good cook."
O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer You my prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of Your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, in reparation for my sins, for the intentions of all my relatives and friends, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father. Amen.
“In the battle of prayer, we must face in ourselves and around us erroneous notions of prayer. Some people view prayer as a simple psychological activity, others as an effort of concentration to reach a mental void. Still others reduce prayer to ritual words and postures. Many Christians unconsciously regard prayer as an occupation that is incompatible with all the other things they have to do: they "don't have the time." Those who seek God by prayer are quickly discouraged because they do not know that prayer comes also from the Holy Spirit and not from themselves alone.” -Catechism of the Catholic Church #2726
SUNDAY MASS READINGS AND QUESTIONS
for Self-Reflection, Couples or Family Discussion
Second Sunday in Lent - March 8th, 2020
The First Reading - Genesis 12:1-4a
The LORD said to Abram: “Go forth from the land of your kinsfolk and from your father’s house to a land that I will show you. “I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you. All the communities of the earth shall find blessing in you.” Abram went as the LORD directed him.
In this way Abram is called to begin a journey of faith, which lead him from Chaldea (modern Iraq) to the Canaan (modern Israel). Journeying by faith will become a motif throughout salvation history. Generations later, Abram’s descendants the Israelites will journey by faith into the wilderness in the hopes of arriving at the same Promised Land to which Abram himself journeyed, in an event we call the Exodus. Generations later still, the people of Judah will be forced to journey to Babylon, where they will struggle to keep faith for seventy years, before being allowed to journey back to that same Promised Land. As Lent is still young, we continue to hear God’s call on our own lives to begin a spiritual journey with him over these forty days, to a destination we don’t know, but God will show us.
Adults - Do you feel like you are fully entering into Lent? What can help you truly make this a time of transformation?
Teens -What can most help you build your relationship with the Lord this Lent?
Kids - How are you working to grow closer to Jesus this Lent?
Responsorial- Psalm 33: 4-5, 18-19, 20, 22
R. Lord, let your mercy be on us, as we place our trust in you.
Upright is the word of the LORD,
and all his works are trustworthy.
He loves justice and right;
of the kindness of the LORD the earth is full.
R. Lord, let your mercy be on us, as we place our trust in you.
See, the eyes of the LORD are upon those who fear him,
upon those who hope for his kindness,
To deliver them from death
and preserve them in spite of famine.
R. Lord, let your mercy be on us, as we place our trust in you.
Our soul waits for the LORD,
who is our help and our shield.
May your kindness, O LORD, be upon us
who have put our hope in you.
R. Lord, let your mercy be on us, as we place our trust in you.
These verses are meant to encourage us on our journey of faith, both the journey that is Lent, and the larger faith journey of our lives: “Lord, let your mercy be upon us, as we place our trust in you.” As you might guess, the Hebrew word translated as “mercy” here (from Ps 33:22) is actually hesed, one of the most common and theologically rich terms in the Psalter. Hesed, often translated “mercy” or “steadfast love,” actually has a more technical meaning: covenant fidelity, the kind of unwavering love and faithfulness that covenant partners were to show toward one another. So in this Psalm, we call on God to continue his covenant faithfulness to us, since, through Jesus the Son of Abraham (Matt 1:1), we are heirs of the covenantal promises given to Abraham so long ago. Our focus on the mercy and love of God continues.
What does the phrase “the fidelity of God” mean to you?
The Second Reading- 2 Timothy 1:8b-10
Beloved: Bear your share of hardship for the gospel with the strength that comes from God. He saved us and called us to a holy life, not according to our works but according to his own design and the grace bestowed on us in Christ Jesus before time began, but now made manifest through the appearance of our savior Christ Jesus, who destroyed death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.
Reflection - St. Paul begins this passage by calling us to “bear our share of hardship.” Lent should be a time of hardship, to a certain extent. The Church leaves each one of the faithful a great deal of discretion in terms of what mortifications to take on during Lent. It is up to each one of us to challenge ourselves. However, it should be a real challenge. Giving up a few small treats that we hardly notice is really not sufficient. We should set ourselves some goals that stretch us out of our comfort zone. We should wake up in the morning and know it’s Lent. -What can you undertake this Lent to challenge yourself a bit more?
The Holy Gospel according to Matthew 17:1-9
Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, conversing with him. Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, “Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”
While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud cast a shadow over them, then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” When the disciples heard this, they fell prostrate and were very much afraid. But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Rise, and do not be afraid.” And when the disciples raised their eyes, they saw no one else but Jesus alone. As they were coming down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, “Do not tell the vision to anyone until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead.”
As the Fathers long recognized, the Transfiguration is a foretaste or glimpse of the glory of Christ in his resurrected state. The sight of his glory is given to Peter, James, and John to encourage them to persevere through the difficult times that lay in front of them before they witness Christ’s resurrection. For us now hearing this Gospel proclaimed at Mass, it is meant to encourage us to persevere not only in Lenten mortification and asceticism until we sacramentally experience Christ’s triumph at Easter, but more broadly in embracing the sufferings of the Christian life until our lowly bodies become like his glorious body (Phil 3:21).
Adults - How would you have responded if you were in the position of the Apostles, seeing Christ transfigured before you?
Teens - Look up the meaning behind the appearance of Moses and Elijah. Why were they there?
Kids - How do you think the Apostles felt in this story? Why did Jesus transfigure before them?
LIVING THE WORD OF GOD THIS WEEK! - Christ has asked us to follow him, carrying our daily cross, and the end of our journey is not Calvary but resurrection, the entrance to a life of glory with our risen Savior. The Christian who grasps his cross closely and willingly, knowing its value for his real life, will find it becomes lighter and often not a burden but a pleasure. The man who tries to shuffle off his cross, and who curses and rebels against him who sent it, will find it doubles its weight and loses all the value it was intended to have for his true welfare. Let the thought of the Transfiguration encourage each one of us today, to do the little God demands of us, so that when we pass out of this life we may be assured of seeing Christ in his glory, ready to welcome us into his everlasting, glorious kingdom.
— Excerpted from The Sunday Readings Cycle A, Fr. Kevin O' Sullivan, O.F.M.