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Prayer

PHOTO: The Way of The Cross – Bloomington

Saturday, April 19th, 2014

Stations_2014_s

Mother of the Redeemer Retreat Center – The Way of The Cross – Meditations by Pope Francis

Mar 29 – Homily – Fr Matthias: Fourth Sorrow of Mary

Saturday, March 29th, 2014
Click to Play

Homily #140329n ( 07min) Play – Father Matthias encourages us to seek after true humility, which is manifested by the acceptance of the crosses and loving God in the midst of trials. For our model, he presents the Blessed Virgin in Her Fourth Sorrow, when She met Jesus carrying the Cross, and reminds us that those who persevered in following Jesus to end persevered because they went there with Mary.
Ave Maria!
Mass: Saturday 3rd Week of Lent – Wkdy – Form: OF
Readings: 
1st: hos 6:1-6
Resp: psa 51:3-4, 18-19, 20-21
Gsp: luk 18:9-14

Audio (MP3)

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Mar 22 – Homily – Fr Matthias: Third Sorrow of Mary

Saturday, March 22nd, 2014
Click to Play

Homily #140322n ( 10min) Play – Father Matthias presents the Third Sorrow of Mary. He reminds us that in order to experience mercy, we must turn to God and ask for it. The reason we don’t do this is because we don’t realize how good God is, and how He is to be desired above everything else. Let us ask Our Lady to make us understand how much we ought to love God, and to give us the grace to seek Jesus amid our crosses and suffering as She did.
Ave Maria!
Mass: Saturday 2nd Week of Lent – Wkdy – Form: OF
Readings: 
1st: mic 7:14-15, 18-20
Resp: psa 103:1-2, 3-4, 9-10, 11-12
Gsp: luk 15:1-3, 11-32

Audio (MP3)

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Prayer and Apostolate

Sunday, March 9th, 2014

Ave Maria Meditations

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” (Jn 15:5)

God wants us to be his instruments for making his redemptive work present in the midst of secular tasks, in ordinary life. But how can we be good instruments of God if we do not ourselves really cherish our life of piety, if we do not really have a personal relationship with Christ in prayer?

Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not fall into a pit?  The apostolate is the fruit of love for Christ.  It is He who is the Light with which we are to give light, the Truth that we must teach, the Life that we have to communicate.  And this will only be possible if we are men and women who are united to God through prayer. It is moving to see how, in the midst of so much apostolic activity, Our Lord gets up early in the morning, a great while before day, to talk to his Father God and to entrust the new day to Him, a day that will be full of attention to particular souls.

We must imitate him. It is in prayer, in talking to Jesus, that we learn to understand to remain cheerful, to welcome and to appreciate the people God places in our path. Without prayer, the Christian would be like a plant without roots: a plant that quickly dries up and cannot bear any fruit. (more…)

Feb 23 – Homily – Fr Giles: “Love your enemies”

Sunday, February 23rd, 2014
Click to Play

Homily #140223a ( 10min) Play – This is a reflection given by Fr. Giles M. Atherton on the readings for the 7th Sunday in Ordinary Time.
Ave Maria!
Mass: 7th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Sunday – Form: OF
Readings: 
1st: lev 19:1-2, 17-18
Resp: psa 103:1-2, 3-4, 8, 10, 12-13
2nd: 1co 3:16-23
Gsp: mat 5:38-48

Audio (MP3)

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A Saint Writes about Prayer

Saturday, February 15th, 2014

Ave Maria Meditations 

As I feel a great attraction toward prayer I asked God, by Our Lady’s intercession, to give me the grace to go on increasing in love of this holy exercise until my death. It is the only means of purifying us, of uniting us to God, and of allowing God to unite himself to us and be glorified in us. We must pray to obtain the apostolic virtues; pray that we may use them to help others, and pray also that we may not lose them while serving others.

The counsel: pray without ceasing, seems sweet to me and in no way impossible. It includes the practice of the presence of God, and with his help I resolve to follow it. We always have need of God, therefore we must always pray. The more we pray, the more we please him and the more we obtain. I do not ask for consolation in prayer; that God gives where he chooses; I am not worthy of consolation and am too weak to bear it. Extraordinary graces are not good for me; to give them to me would be like building upon sand, or pouring a precious liquid into a broken vase. 

I ask God to give me a solid, simple gift of prayer which will glorify him and not make me vain. It seems to me that dryness and desolation accompanied by grace are very useful to me, for then I delight in making acts of real virtue: I strive against my bad inclinations and try to be faithful to God.

When we are distracted during prayer and find the time long because of our impatience to pass on to something else, it is good to say to yourself: My soul, are you tired of your God? Are you not satisfied with him? You possess him and do you seek for something else? Where can you be better than in his company? Where can you profit more? I have experienced that this calms the mind and unites it with God.

+St. Claude de la Colombiere (feast day is February 15th)

 

The Cold Winter in the Spiritual Journey

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

Ave Maria Meditations: 

But there is yet another winter. This is suffered by a really God-fearing man. He is mindful of God and loves him, and is careful to avoid all sin. But God seems to have forsaken him. As far as his feelings go he is dry, dark and cold, devoid of all heavenly consolation and spiritual sweetness. Our Lord himself suffered this spiritual winter being deserted by his heavenly Father and deprived of his help. Although he was united to the divine nature, yet his poor human nature received no drop of comfort from the Godhead during his unspeakably bitter passion-not an instant’s consolation in his sorest need. He was the most forsaken and helpless and agonizing of all men.

Now this is a lesson to his chosen friends. These must with all joy and entire goodwill endure this state of abandonment in union with Christ. For he is their shepherd; they are privileged to be his sheep; they must suffer patiently in their interior soul and show all patience in their outward behavior, in imitation of Jesus Christ. lf they are but overjoyed to follow him into this his winter time of desolation, abandonment by God and all creatures, then will God in actual reality be present with them, and in a manner far more to their advantage than if they experienced the brightest possible summer-time of his sensible favor.

No one can fully understand all the good that lies hidden in this stern trial of desolation of spirit, this dark and frozen spiritual winter-supposing always that one holds his mind steady and firm in patient endurance.

+Fr. John Tauler, O.P.

 

A Pro-Life Prayer to St. Gerard

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

Ave Maria Meditations

Against the Forces of Anti-Life:

O great wonder-worker of our day, St. Gerard, powerful protector of a mother and her unborn child:  beg God, we beseech thee, to crush the mounting forces of anti-life and to enlighten those who work in this deadly way, that they may see the enormity of their sin and return to the  generous observance of the divine law.  Pray, too, for mothers that they may prize the great privilege of motherhood and that they may bring up their children in the holy love and fear of God, so saving their own immortal souls and furthering the honor and glory of their Maker: through Christ Our Lord, Amen.

 

For the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart

Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

Ave Maria Meditations

“In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph.” (Our Lady of Fatima)

Offering as a Little Victim of Love for the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary:

O Immaculate Virgin Mother of God and my Mother Mary, I consecrate myself entirely to you with a filial love that knows no limits. For the greatest possible glory of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and for the salvation and sanctification of souls, I offer myself as a little victim of love for the triumph of your Most Pure and Immaculate Heart.

Deign, oh my Mother, to accept this humble offering and give me the grace to do everything through, with and in Your Heart. May you use me as You wish. Transform me completely within your Immaculate Heart so that I may disappear and you alone remain. Amen.

Ave Maria!

In fact, what we will discover is that in order for us to be instruments in bringing about the triumph and reign of Our Lady in the world, she must first and foremost triumph and reign in us. The glorious, universal triumph of Mary’s Heart starts in our hearts. The triumph must be realized one heart at a time. That said, the spiritual program of this little victimhood of love starts at home. It begins with our consecration to her maternal heart, the imitation of her virtues, the awareness and correspondence to her ongoing spiritual presence, the death to the world and to ourselves and the mystical transformation in the Most Holy Trinity in the depth of the divine sanctuary of her Immaculate Heart. In a word, we must experience and live her motherly presence first hand and then we will be able to bring that presence to others by our lives, words, prayers, and actions.  

(the prayer above) can serve as a model for offering oneself as a little victim of love for the triumph of Mary’s most pure and Immaculate Heart.

reprinted with permission from Fr. Maximilian Mary Dean, FI

A Prayer of Thanksgiving and Adoration

Thursday, November 28th, 2013

Ave Maria Meditations

I have come My Lord to be with You, to recall the great mystery of faith: Your true presence in the consecrated Bread of Life.  I come to adore You, Jesus, by acts of faith, hope, and love; to express sorrow for my sins;  to make reparation for the sins of the whole world;  to thank You for Your blessings and gifts, so many of which we take for granted  and to present to you my needs, my fears, and my desire for You to govern my life.

I pray to the Holy Spirit of light and truth to fill my heart and enkindle the fire of Your divine love.  I also ask our Blessed Mother to be with me as I visit her Divine Son.

Lord, I may not be able to find all the words to express what is really in my heart.  I may be distracted and perhaps feel a weariness. Regardless, I kneel in silence before You, knowing that You know my innermost thoughts and desires.

I come to renew my personal love for you and attempt to rededicate my life to You. Please touch my heart and soul with your peace. Amen

Praying Through a Tornado

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

Ave Maria!

Here is a video by Anthony Khoury in Washington, Ill. who very earnestly prays the Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be and Oh My Jesus with the rest of his family as he calmly films a very powerful, fast moving tornado. He makes a comment before praying, “I hope nobody’s hurt.” Given the massive amount of destruction in this town and the very low number of fatalities, perhaps his prayers were answered. He and his family seemed much more concerned for others than for themselves. Great example, Anthony and family!

TornadoAnthonyKhoury

 

Watch it here!

Novena to Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal

Tuesday, November 19th, 2013

Ave Maria Meditations

(in advance of the Feast of the Miraculous Medal on November 27th)

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful, and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit, and they shall be created. And you shall renew the face of the earth.

Let us pray: O God, who did instruct the hearts of the faithful by the light of the Holy Spirit, grant us in the same Spirit to be truly wise and ever to rejoice in His consolation, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you. (three times).

O Lord Jesus Christ, who have vouchsafed to glorify by numberless miracles the Blessed Virgin Mary, immaculate from the first moment of her conception, grant that all who devoutly implore her protection on earth, may eternally enjoy your presence in heaven, who, with the Father and the Holy Spirit, live and reign, God, forever and ever. Amen. (more…)

On the Church Suffering

Friday, November 1st, 2013

Ave Maria Meditations

From St. Faustina’s diary on the Holy Souls in Purgatory:

It was at that time that I asked the Lord for whom else should I pray for. Jesus said that on the following night He would let me know for whom I should pray.  [The next night] I saw my Guardian Angel, who ordered me to follow him. In a moment I was in a misty place full of fire in which there was a great crowd of suffering souls. They were praying fervently, but to no avail, for themselves; only we can come to their aid. The flames which were burning them did not touch me at all. My Guardian Angel did not leave me for an instant. I asked these souls what their greatest suffering was. They answered me in one voice that their greatest torment was longing for God.

I saw Our Lady visiting the souls in PURGATORY. The souls call her “The Star of the Sea.” She brings them refreshment. I wanted to talk with them some more, but my Guardian Angel beckoned me to leave. We went out of that prison of suffering. [I heard an interior voice] which said, My mercy does not want this, but justice demands it. Since that time, I am in closer communion with the suffering souls. (Diary, 20) (more…)

St. Peter of Alcantara: Meditating on the Creed

Saturday, October 19th, 2013

Ave Maria Meditations

Having seen what fruit may come of Prayer and Mediation, let us now see what are the things on which we should meditate.   To which the answer is, that inasmuch as this holy exercise is ordained to create in our hearts the love and fear of God, and to lead us to keep His Commandments, the most fitting subject for this exercise will be that which should most surely lead to the end proposed.

Although it be true that all created things, whether earthly or heavenly, may move us to this, yet, generally speaking, the Mysteries of our Faith which are contained in the Creed, are the most efficacious, and profitable.  For here are treated the subjects of the Divine blessings, the Last Judgment, the pains of Hell, and the glory of Paradise, where there are the most powerful stimulants to move our hearts to the love and fear of God;  and in it are treated also the Life and Passion of Our Savior Christ, in which consists all our good.

These two subjects especially are treated of in the Creed, and are those on which we for the most part make our Meditations.  And therefore, with much reason it is said, that the Creed is the most fitting subject for this holy exercise, although at the same time, there may be with everyone some subject which might more especially move his heart to the love and fear of God.

+St. Peter Alcantara

NCRegister | Pray the Rosary With Children

Monday, October 7th, 2013

How to Increase Little Ones’ Devotion to Our Lady

BY JOSEPH PRONECHEN, REGISTER CORRESPONDENT Sunday, Oct 06, 2013 6:08 AM Comment

During the month we dedicate to the holy Rosary, Oct. 17 marks the 96th anniversary of Our Lady’s appearances at Fatima, Portugal, to three children visionaries: Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco.

The Blessed Mother told the children to pray the Rosary daily for peace — and to tell others to pray, too. We honor Our Lady of the Rosary each Oct. 7.

On Oct. 13, 1917, the Miracle of the Sun took place, which Pope Francis will commemorate with Mass and praying the Rosary in Rome Oct. 12-13 this year. Then the Holy Father will consecrate the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in St. Peter’s Square before the original statue of Our Lady of Fatima from the shrine in Portugal.

In his short time as Holy Father, Francis has consecrated his papacy and World Youth Day 2013 to Our Lady of Fatima. He follows in the steps of Blessed John Paul II, who declared, “The message of Fatima is more important now than ever.”

Benedict XVI also affirmed the message during his visit to the shrine: “We would be mistaken to think that Fatima’s prophetic mission is complete.”

Two new initiatives follow the papal calls. One brings the story and inspiration of Fatima directly to children through a new book. The other has children answering Our Lady’s call to pray the Rosary.

 

Fatima Book

“Francis is making it clear to the world that we need to live and spread this message,” says Michael La Corte, executive director of the Fatima Family Apostolate (FFA, FatimaFamily.org). The organization has published The Miracle of the Dancing Sun: Messages From Mary, with the goal of distributing it to Catholic schools and parish religious-education programs worldwide.

via NCRegister | Pray the Rosary With Children.