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Catholic Culture

The Presentation of Our Lady: A Feast of Preparation

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Ave Maria Meditations

On the Feast of the Presentation of Our Lady in the Temple:

On the feast of the Presentation of Our Lady, we celebrate the fact that Our Lady’s parents brought her to the Temple at the age of three and handed her over to live there for a long period as a consecrated virgin where she might exclusively contemplate God.

There is a special beauty to this feast since it highlights the fact that Our Lady was chosen even before time began. She is called the root of Jesse (Isaiah, 11:1) from which Our Lord Jesus Christ would be born. She is introduced to the synagogue, the institution in charge of keeping this promise. Thus, the synagogue receives Our Lady as a first step. In this act, the hopes of ages would soon be fulfilled. Our Lady, a supremely holy soul, is received in the Temple and entered into the service of God. (more…)

Nov 20 – Homily – Fr Maximilian W: What Makes For Peace

Thursday, November 20th, 2014
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Homily #141120n ( 04min) Play – “If this day you only knew what makes for peace” We may ask this question ourselves in our war-torn world. The answer comes at the end of the Gospel today, we do not have peace, because “you did not recognize the time of your visitation.” Do we recognize the greatest sign of Love, the Passion and Death of Our Lord? If we do and embrace the Cross of Christ in our own lives, we will find peace.
Ave Maria!
Mass: Thursday in the 33rd Week in Ordinary Time – Wkdy – Form: OF
1st: rev 5:1-10
Resp: psa 149:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 9
Gsp: luk 19:41-44

Audio (MP3)


Nov 18 – Homily – Fr Maximilian W: Mission to the Lost

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014
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Homily #141118n ( 04min) Play – The goal of the Church is to save those who would otherwise be lost, and we can see this in Our Lord’s eating with Zacchaeus in today’s Gospel. We can also see this in today’s celebration where we remember the Apostle to the Jews and Foundation of the Church, St. Peter, and the Apostle to the Gentiles, St. Paul. The Church’s call is universal, to reach all men with the Gospel. As members of this Church, that means we too are called to spread the Gospel, and especially to those who would otherwise be lost.
Ave Maria!
Mass: Dedication of St. Peters and Pauls Basilicas – Opt Mem – Form: OF
Readings: Tuesday in the 33rd Week in Ordinary Time
1st: rev 3:1-6, 14-22
Resp: psa 15:2-3, 3-4, 5
Gsp: luk 19:1-10

Audio (MP3)


Nov 16 – Homily – Fr Matthias: What Good Have You Done?

Sunday, November 16th, 2014
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Homily #141116n ( 22min) Play – Fr. Matthias comments on today’s gospel, telling us that while we don’t all receive the same amount of grace, we all do have the obligation to use what we have. Father gives us the three conditions to merit: 1) we have to do a good work while in the state of grace, 2) we need to do the works appropriate to our state in life, and 3) it needs to be done out of a supernatural motive, that is, out of love for God. And he gives us one final exhortation: We are responsible for our actions, we were given our free will to use it, and Our Lord will ask us “What good have you done?”
Ave Maria!
Mass: 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time – Sunday – Form: OF
1st: pro 31:10-13, 19-20, 30-31
Resp: psa 128:1-2, 3, 4-5
2nd: 1th 5:1-6
Gsp: mat 25:14-30

Audio (MP3)


Passive Penances

Friday, November 14th, 2014

Ave Maria Meditations

Some means of practicing penance:

First we ought to be aware of what are called passive mortifications.  These can be–when offered with love–what happens to us unexpectedly, or what does not depend on our will: cold, heat, pain, patience at having to wait longer than we expected, not reacting in kind to a brusque answer we might receive. Along with these passive mortifications, there are many others which can make our dealings with other people more pleasant–punctuality for example, listening with real interest, speaking when there is an uncomfortable moment of silence, being affable and not allowing circumstances to dictate our moods, being courteous and polite with others, saying thank you and apologizing when we have annoyed someone. (more…)

Nov 14 – Homily – Fr Matthias: St. Nicholas and the Challenge of Truth

Friday, November 14th, 2014
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Homily #141114n ( 11min) Play – Father Matthias comments on the account of the martyrdom of today’s saints, Ss. Nicholas Tavelic and companions, who preached the Gospel to the Muslims in Jerusalem and sealed their witness with their blood. Against the swords of the Muslims, they brought the Truth of Christ and the words of Sacred Scripture. Father quote the words of Pope Benedict XVI, ““I would say that the Christian can afford to be supremely confident, yes, fundamentally certain that he can venture freely into the open sea of truth, without having to fear for his Christian identity.” We must be confrontational, and challenge others, not with violence, but with a challenge to think about what they believe, to also “venture freely into the open sea of truth” so that by speaking to their intellect and will, we may introduce them to the one who is Truth Himself.
Ave Maria!
Mass: St. Nicholas Tavelic and companions – Mem – Form: OF
Readings: Friday in the 32nd Week in Ordinary Time
1st: 2jo 1:4-9
Resp: psa 119:1, 2, 10, 11, 17, 18
Gsp: luk 17:26-37

Audio (MP3)


Typewriter Artist – YouTube

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

Ave Maria!

Amazing art, indeed, including of the Blessed Virgin Mary and other Catholic themes. Check out this heart warming video.

KING-TV (2004): An extraordinary man with a severe disability creates incredible works of art using a typewriter.

via Typewriter Artist – YouTube.

Nov 12 – Homily – Fr Matthias: An Ecumenical Saint

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014
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Homily #141112n ( 14min) Play – Father gives us the events leading up to the life of St. Josaphat, his life and work, and finally his death at the hands of belligerent schismatics. He ends by telling us that two things are necessary for lasting Christian union: lives of holiness and a willingness to even lay down one’s life for the unity of the Church.
Ave Maria!
Mass: St. Josaphat – Mem – Form: OF

Audio (MP3)


Nov 06 – Homily – Fr Maximilian W: Us Straying Sheep

Thursday, November 6th, 2014
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Homily #141106n ( 05min) Play – Father comments on today’s Gospel, telling us that there is more joy in heaven over the conversion of one sinner than ninety-nine just. And if we examine our hearts, we will see that we are the sinner, not one of the just. Let us then turn towards the Lord, and allow the Good Shepherd to carry us back to the flock.
Ave Maria!
Mass: Thursday in the 31st Week in Ordinary Time – Wkdy – Form: OF
1st: phi 3:3-8
Resp: psa 105:2-3, 4-5, 6-7
Gsp: luk 15:1-10

Audio (MP3)


St. Joseph: Patron of the Dying

Wednesday, November 5th, 2014

Ave Maria Meditations

In this month of November let us remember the souls in Purgatory in a special way every day and let us also pray for the great blessing of a happy death in a state of grace for ourselves.  St. Joseph is the Patron of a Blessed Death; let us ask him for this grace.

Petition Prayer to St. Joseph:
O glorious Saint Joseph, faithful follower of Jesus Christ, to you we raise our hearts and hands to implore your powerful intercession in obtaining from the benign heart of Jesus all the helps and graces necessary for our spiritual and temporal welfare, particularly for the grace of a happy death and the special favor we now request…
(State your request here.)
O guardian of the Word Incarnate,
we feel animated with confidence that your prayers
in our behalf will be graciously heard before the throne of God.
O glorious St. Joseph,
through the love you bear to Jesus Christ
and for the glory of His name,
hear our prayers and obtain our petitions.

Nov 04 – Homily – Fr Maximilian W: Reach Out With St. Charles

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014
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Homily #141104n ( 07min) Play – Father Maximilian comments on the readings of the day and relates them to today’s saint, St. Charles Borromeo.
Ave Maria!
Mass: St. Charles Borromeo – Mem – Form: OF
Readings: Tuesday in the 31st Week in Ordinary Time
1st: phi 2:5-11
Resp: psa 22:26-27, 28-30, 31-32
Gsp: luk 14:15-24

Audio (MP3)


Mary Is the Center of the Communion of Saints, Pope Francis Says | Daily News | NCRegister.com

Monday, November 3rd, 2014

VATICAN CITY — In his Angelus address for the Solemnity of All Saints, Pope Francis said that it is a joy to have a spiritual family living in eternity and stressed that Mary is the first of the saints who guides us to her Son.

“In the great assembly of saints, God has wanted to reserve the first place for the Mother of Jesus,” the Holy Father said before his Nov. 1 weekly recitation of the traditional Marian prayer.

Mary, he said, “is the center of the communion of saints, as the singular guardian of the bond of the universal Church with Christ.”

Whoever wants to follow Jesus on the path of the Gospel can find a secure guide in Mary, the Pope explained, saying that she is an attentive and caring mother with whom we can entrust every desire or difficulty.

via Mary Is the Center of the Communion of Saints, Pope Francis Says | Daily News | NCRegister.com.

Video – Unity with Mary under Pope Francis – Dr. Miravalle: Mcasts230

Monday, November 3rd, 2014

Click to Play Video

MaryCast Specials #230 ( 06min) Play – In the wake of the extraordinary Synod of the Family that resulted in some contentious reactions, Dr. Mark Miravalle points out that with Mary and the Pope the Church will be sure to be united in truth and will be able to proclaim it in the most attractive way possible to our modern world.

To ask questions regarding Mary, email Dr Mark Miravalle: mary@motherofallpeoples.com. For more reading go to Motherofallpeoples.com.

Ave Maria!

Audio (MP3)


November 2nd: All Souls Day

Sunday, November 2nd, 2014

Ave Maria Meditations

November is a month especially dedicated to praying for the souls in Purgatory.  Let us begin with these thoughts:

According to tradition, our Lord promised St. Gertrude the Great that 1000 souls would be released from purgatory each time it is said devoutly.

Eternal Father, I offer Thee the Most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son, Jesus, in union with the masses said throughout the world today, for all the holy souls in purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the universal church, those in my own home and within my family. Amen.

other prayers:

O Lord, who art ever merciful and bounteous with Thy gifts, look down upon the suffering souls in purgatory. Remember not their offenses and negligences, but be mindful of Thy loving mercy, which is from all eternity. Cleanse them of their sins and fulfill their ardent desires that they may be made worthy to behold Thee face to face in Thy glory. May they soon be united with Thee and hear those blessed words which will call them to their heavenly home: “Come, blessed of My Father, take possession of the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord; And let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen

For more information on the Indulgence to be gained and also an Introduction to All Souls Day: (more…)

Edward Sri | Mary, Bethlehem and the Cross – Rosary Crawl

Sunday, November 2nd, 2014

Ave Maria!

Ok, this finishes the Rosary Crawl which we started at the midpoint (or is that mid-crawl?)  when I noticed it on Catholic World Report.  This one is the Nativity at Bethlehem from Edward Sri at To Keep and to Ponder

From Edward Sri | Mary, Bethlehem and the Cross.:

I am happy to be part of a blog tour for a new movie being released by Ignatius Press, entitled Mary of Nazareth. Each person on the tour is offering a reflection on one of the mysteries of the Rosary, and I’ve been tasked with Mary at the Nativity. For a sample clip of this scene from the movie, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch v=O9VyT9sY_Dc&authuser=0. If you want your family and friends to know Mary better, this movie is worth seeing!


I am especially excited to be a part of this because I am in Israel right now leading a “Walking with Mary” Holy Land pilgrimage, in which we use the 20 mysteries of the Rosary as our itinerary and pray right in the places where these mysteries unfolded. The following is based on my reflections from our group’s visit to Bethlehem this week.



The Mary of the Bible is not fully portrayed by the Mary of your grandmother’s nativity set.

Not that the classical depiction of Our Lady kneeling before the manger with her hands folded and her eyes gazing upon the infant child is wrong. It beautifully captures the Blessed Mother’s ardent devotion to her newborn Son.

But if we read the Bible carefully, we can see there was a lot more going on in Mary’s life in those days, and some of it would be been quite troubling for her.

More at Edward Sri | Mary, Bethlehem and the Cross.