- The Rosary Foundation (Catholic Website of the Week)
- Pope Francis Says, Be Bold in Responding to the Lord's Call (Diocesan News and BEYOND)
- Helpful Hints Submitted by Wives--Husbands Please Read (Helpful Hints for Life)
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 First Sunday of Lent. >>> Readings
prayer (from Latin precaria, “obtain by pleading or earnestly requesting”)
- 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)
Helpful Hints Submitted by Wives
(Husbands, please take a look)
Not listed in any particular order
1) Be my best friend.
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
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.
By Hannah Brockhaus
Vatican City, Mar 9, 2019 / 05:37 am (CNA).- It takes courage and boldness to trust in God’s promises and follow the vocation he has set out for you, Pope Francis said in a message for the World Day of Prayer for Vocations, released Saturday.
“Responding to the Lord’s call involves putting ourselves on the line and facing a great challenge. It means being ready to leave behind whatever would keep us tied to our little boat and prevent us from making a definitive choice,” the pope said March 9.
“We are called to be bold and decisive in seeking God’s plan for our lives,” he continued. “Gazing out at the vast ‘ocean’ of vocation, we cannot remain content to repair our nets on the boat that gives us security, but must trust instead in the Lord’s promise.”
“Every vocation is a summons not to stand on the shore, nets in hand, but to follow Jesus on the path he has marked out for us, for our own happiness and for the good of those around us.”
Pope Francis’ message was released in advance of the 56th World Day of Prayer for Vocations, which will be celebrated on May 12. This year’s theme is “The courage to take a risk for God’s promise.”
In his message the pope reflected on the passage from the Gospel of Mark, when Jesus calls Simon, Andrew, James, and John to be his disciples.
At the time, the two pairs of brothers were going about their daily work as fishermen, Francis explained, noting that fishing is demanding work which sometimes produces results and sometimes does not.
“Much of life is like that,” he said. Each person, in trying to realize his or her deepest desires, puts out into a “‘sea’ of possibilities” and “sometimes we enjoy a good catch, while at others, we need courage to keep our boat from being tossed by the waves, or we are frustrated at seeing our nets come up empty.”
But, he emphasized, the Gospel is about an encounter with a person, Jesus Christ. “That day, by the sea of Galilee, Jesus drew near to those fishermen … and he immediately made them a promise: ‘I will make you fishers of men.’”
This is how God calls each person: through an invitation, he explained. “The Lord’s call is not an intrusion of God in our freedom … On the contrary, it is the loving initiative whereby God encounters us and invites us to be part of a great undertaking. He opens before our eyes the horizon of a greater sea and an abundant catch.”
Francis also noted the importance of a person’s vocation for not just in his or her life, but for the community and for the growth of God’s kingdom on earth.
“These vocations make us bearers of a promise of goodness, love and justice, not only for ourselves but also for our societies and cultures, which need courageous Christians and authentic witnesses of the kingdom of God,” he said.
On the coming World Day of Prayer for Vocations, he concluded, “let us join in prayer and ask the Lord to help us discover his plan of love for our lives, and to grant us the courage to walk in the path that, from the beginning, he has chosen for each of us.”
By Blanca Ruiz
“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.”
By Ann Schneible
“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
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 Connecticutfor 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
The First Sunday of Lent - March 10th, 2019
The First Reading- Deuteronomy 26: 4-10
Moses spoke to the people, saying: "The priest shall receive the basket from you and shall set it in front of the altar of the LORD, your God. Then you shall declare before the Lord, your God, 'My father was a wandering Aramean who went down to Egypt with a small household and lived there as an alien. But there he became a nation great, strong, and numerous. When the Egyptians maltreated and oppressed us, imposing hard labor upon us, we cried to the LORD, the God of our fathers, and he heard our cry and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression. He brought us out of Egypt with his strong hand and outstretched arm, with terrifying power, with signs and wonders; and bringing us into this country, he gave us this land flowing with milk and honey. Therefore, I have now brought you the first fruits of the products of the soil which you, O LORD, have given me.' And having set them before the Lord, your God, you shall bow down in his presence."
Moses reminds his people in today’s First Reading: “We cried to the LORD . . . and He heard.” But each of us is tempted, as Israel was, to forget the great deeds He works in our lives, to neglect our birthright as His beloved sons and daughters. Like the litany of remembrance Moses prescribes for Israel, we should see in the Mass a memorial of our salvation, and “bow down in His presence,” in thanksgiving for all He has given us.
Adults -What reminds you of God in your everyday life?
Teens - Did you know that Israel’s story is our story? Our faith descended from theirs and we face many temptations in our lives that they faced then. They were tempted to worship the golden calf instead of God. What are the “golden calves” in today’s world (i.e. money, fame, excessive comfort?)
Kids - What are you doing to observe Lent this year?
Responsorial- Psalm 91: 1-2, 10-11, 12-13, 14-15
R. Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
You who dwell in the shelter of the Most High,
who abide in the shadow of the Almighty,
say to the LORD, "My refuge and fortress,
my God in whom I trust."
R. Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
No evil shall befall you,
nor shall affliction come near your tent,
For to his angels he has given command about you,
that they guard you in all your ways.
R. Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
Upon their hands they shall bear you up,
lest you dash your foot against a stone.
You shall tread upon the asp and the viper;
you shall trample down the lion and the dragon.
R. Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
Because he clings to me, I will deliver him;
I will set him on high because he acknowledges my name.
He shall call upon me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in distress;
I will deliver him and glorify him.
R. Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
-What is something that is troubling you that you need to bring to the Lord?
The Second Reading- Romans 10: 8-13
Brothers and sisters: What does Scripture say? The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart —that is, the word of faith that we preach—, for, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For one believes with the heart and so is justified, and one confesses with the mouth and so is saved. For the Scripture says, No one who believes in him will be put to shame. For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all, enriching all who call upon him. For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."
Saint Paul assures us that anyone who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved. He was reminding the people of his time that salvation was made available to all, whether Jew or Gentile, through Jesus Christ. He came as Savior to the whole world. He also reminds us the importance of our own relationship with Jesus - and that we must believe in our hearts what we profess with our mouths.
How do you find encouragement when things get difficult?
The Holy Gospel according to Luke 4: 1-13
Filled with the Holy Spirit, Jesus returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the desert for forty days, to be tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and when they were over he was hungry. The devil said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread." Jesus answered him, "It is written, One does not live on bread alone." Then he took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a single instant. The devil said to him, "I shall give to you all this power and glory; for it has been handed over to me, and I may give it to whomever I wish. All this will be yours, if you worship me." Jesus said to him in reply, "It is written: You shall worship the Lord, your God, and him alone shall you serve." Then he led him to Jerusalem, made him stand on the parapet of the temple, and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written: He will command his angels concerning you, to guard you, and: With their hands they will support you, lest you dash your foot against a stone." Jesus said to him in reply, "It also says, You shall not put the Lord, your God, to the test." When the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from him for a time.
In today’s epic Gospel scene, Jesus relives in His flesh the history of Israel. We’ve already seen that, like Israel, Jesus has passed through water and been called God’s beloved Son (see Luke 3:22; Exodus 4:22). Now, as Israel was tested for forty years in the wilderness, Jesus is led into the desert to be tested for forty days and nights (see Exodus 15:25). He faces the temptations put to Israel: Hungry, a temptation to grumble against God for food (see Exodus 16:1–13). As Israel quarreled at Massah, He faces temptation to doubt God’s care (see Exodus 17:1–6). When the Devil asks for His worship, it’s a temptation to do what Israel did in creating the golden calf (see Exodus 32). Jesus fights the Devil with the Word of God, three times quoting from Moses’ lecture about the lessons Israel was supposed to learn from its wilderness wanderings (see Deuteronomy 8:3; 6:16; 6:12–15). Jesus overcame all of these temptations and used his time in the desert to show that whatever he was called to do would not be clouded with fear for his needs not being met, a hunger for authority, or a lack of trust in God’s care.
Adults -What are your Lenten observations this year? How can you be more intentional about observing them?
Teens - How is your prayer life? Do you pause to remember that you are talking to the Creator of the universe who loves you with a perfect love? Do you intentionally listen for responses to prayer in your life?
Kids - How can you add in a few minutes of silence with Jesus every day?