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Social Issues

Compassion that Cures

Thursday, January 28th, 2016

Ave Maria Meditations

 In Haiti just as in England, Spain, Italy, or India there are unhappy people everywhere. Not only because they don’t have any bread to eat. No, they hunger for love, understanding, and companionship. They suffer from loneliness, the feeling of being unwanted and rejected, a poverty of the soul. These are the things that can be far worse than being hungry or not having enough material goods….
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Let’s not live distracted lives. Let us know ourselves so that we can better understand our brothers and sisters. lf we want to understand those with whom we live, we need to understand ourselves first of all. Sometimes we see how joy returns to the lives of the most destitute when they realize that many among us are concerned about them and show them our love.
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Even their health improves if they are sick, after all, was it not Christ himself who said, “Every time you did it to the least of my brethren, you did it to me?” You are not to be indifferent to the suffering of others, but it is meant to affect you deeply.
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Blessed Teresa of Calcutta

Prayer for the Unborn

Friday, January 22nd, 2016

Ave Maria Meditations

Pope Benedict’s Prayer for the Unborn: 

Lord Jesus, You who faithfully visit and fulfill with your Presence the Church and the history of men; You who in the miraculous Sacrament of your Body and Blood render us participants in divine Life and allow us a foretaste of the joy of eternal Life; We adore and bless you.  Prostrated before You, source and lover of Life, truly present and alive among us, we beg you: Reawaken in us respect for every unborn life, make us capable of seeing in the fruit of the maternal womb the miraculous work of the Creator, open our hearts to generously welcoming every child that comes into life.
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Bless all families, sanctify the union of spouses, render fruitful their love. Accompany the choices of legislative assemblies with the light of your Spirit,so that peoples and nations may recognize and respect the sacred nature of life, of every human life.

(more…)

The Slaughter of the Innocents: Then and Now

Monday, December 28th, 2015

Ave Maria Meditations

The jealously of a king brought about the murder of innocents even as the death of the One sought was evaded.  In this day, there is still many innocents killed,  often by force, but even sadder by the decision of parents as they find the unborn child inconvenient…

We remember today, O God, the slaughter of the holy innocents Of Bethlehem by King Herod. Receive, we pray, into the arms of your mercy all innocent victims; and by your great might frustrate the designs of evil tyrants and establish your rule of justice, love, and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.

Prayer to end abortion, the present day slaughter of Innocents:

O Almighty God, Creator of Heaven and earth and all things, You create today millions of human beings who are never permitted to see the light of day because of the sin of abortion. Grant to mankind the wisdom to respect human life at every stage of development.

You infuse souls into innocent babies even while still in their mothers’ wombs, their temporary homes. Grant that no one deprives your most innocent ones the privilege of your holy Baptism whereby they may be born again to Your supernatural life by grace. One soul in Your eyes, Almighty God, is of more value than the whole created universe.

Accept the precious blood of Your Son Jesus Christ, present on our altars and in our tabernacles, throughout the world in reparation for the sins of abortive murder. Even before Your Divine Son was born of Mary, dear God, when Your holy Mother greeted Elizabeth shortly after the conception of the Divine Child. Elizabeth asked, “How am I worthy that the Mother of my Lord should come to me?” Long before the birth of the Divine Child the Holy Spirit inspired Elizabeth to call Mary “Mother” and the unborn Child, her “Lord.”

Almighty God, remove the scourge of abortion from the face of the earth. Amen. (more…)

Dec 27 – Homily – Fr Matthias: Which He Himself Formed…

Monday, December 28th, 2015
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Homily #151227n ( 16min) Play – When God came into the world, he came “in a family which he himself had formed” as Pope Francis recently said. This shows how important the family–mother, father, and children–is in God’s eyes. Our Lady of Fatima warned us against the “errors of Russia”, and the fundamental error is the abolition of the family. And how can we best combat this error? By faithfully praying the Rosary as a family!
Ave Maria!
Mass: Holy Family – Feast – Form: OF
Readings: 
1st: sir 3:2-6, 12-14
Resp: psa 128:1-2, 3, 4-5
2nd: col 3:12-21
Gsp: luk 2:41-52

Audio (MP3)

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Marital Imagery

Tuesday, November 17th, 2015

Ave Maria Meditations

In the beginning, in Genesis, we are told that God made man in His image, “in the image and likeness of God”, and that He made us male and female. For most of us, it is clear to us that our spiritual souls are in the image of God but we forget that so also are our bodies. In creating man, male and female in His likeness, the image of God is also in our sexuality. For God said, “Let us make man in our image. Let us make them male and female.”

God is Trinity, and it has been revealed to us that in God, there is paternity. There is one who begets and there is, Jesus Christ, the One who is begotten. And the love of the One who begets, for the One who is begotten, is the third Person of the holy Trinity, the Holy Spirit. When the Word took flesh; when God, in the person of Jesus Christ, took on our human nature from the blessed virgin Mary, He gave to that human nature His own existence. Christ and His Person brought together the union of the human and the divine. This union in His Person we call the Hypostatic Union.

God came into our midst, not simply to proclaim who He is; not simply to communicate truth to us; but the ultimate purpose why Jesus came, was that He wanted to enter into a mystical union of life and of love with God’s people. Through all the Scriptures this mystical union is expressed in marital terminology, namely, God being called the Groom and Israel being the bride. In the new covenant, this union of life and love of Christ with the people of God, we called the Mystical Body of Christ. The marital couple makes present in a very special way the Church, namely the union of Christ with the bride.

Msgr. Philip Reilly

From Evangelium Vitae as the 40 Days for Life begins Nationwide

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015

Ave Maria Meditations

The 40 Days for Life runs from September 23rd-November 1st, 2015

1. The Gospel of life is at the heart of Jesus’ message. Lovingly received day after day by the Church, it is to be preached with dauntless fidelity as “good news” to the people of every age and culture.

At the dawn of salvation, it is the Birth of a Child which is proclaimed as joyful news: “I bring you good news of a great joy which will come to all the people; for to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord” (Lk 2:10-11). The source of this “great joy” is the Birth of the Saviour; but Christmas also reveals the full meaning of every human birth, and the joy which accompanies the Birth of the Messiah is thus seen to be the foundation and fulfilment of joy at every child born into the world (cf. Jn 16:21).

When he presents the heart of his redemptive mission, Jesus says: “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” (Jn 10:10)…

The incomparable worth of the human person …

The Church knows that this Gospel of life, which she has received from her Lord,  has a profound and persuasive echo in the heart of every person-believer and non-believer alike-because it marvelously fulfills all the heart’s expectations while infinitely surpassing them. Even in the midst of difficulties and uncertainties, every person sincerely open to truth and goodness can, by the light of reason and the hidden action of grace, come to recognize in the natural law written in the heart (cf. Rom 2:14-15) the sacred value of human life from its very beginning until its end, and can affirm the right of every human being to have this primary good respected to the highest degree. Upon the recognition of this right, every human community and the political community itself are founded.

In a special way, believers in Christ must defend and promote this right, aware as they are of the wonderful truth recalled by the Second Vatican Council: “By his incarnation the Son of God has united himself in some fashion with every human being”. This saving event reveals to humanity not only the boundless love of God who “so loved the world that he gave his only Son” (Jn 3:16), but also the incomparable value of every human person.

St. John Paul II

Fall River Pro-Life Boot-camp – Variety 275

Monday, August 24th, 2015
Balloon with "life" written on it


Variety #275 – ( 10min) >>> Play

Ave Maria!

Several interviews with the organizers of the 2015 Pro-Life Boot Camp in the Diocese of Fall River, Massachusetts. The video was filmed at the prayer vigil across the street from the Four Women Health Services (the local abortion clinic) in Attleboro, Massachusetts, on June 18th, 2015.

Audio (MP3)

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Aug 23 – Homily – Fr Joachim: Importance of the Eucharist

Sunday, August 23rd, 2015
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Homily #150823n ( 10min) Play – The subject for the past few Sundays has been John 6, which is all about the Eucharist and how essential is it in order to have the life of Christ within us. Father covers the whole chapter, and observes that many disciples left after this teaching (Father notes this verse is John 6:66), and many Christians still refuse to accept this teaching and its implications for our moral lives. Let us receive this hard teaching of Jesus with faith, saying with Peter, “Master, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.”
Ave Maria!
Mass: 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time – Sunday – Form: OF
Readings: 
1st: jos 24:1-2, 15-17, 18
Resp: psa 34:2-3, 16-17, 18-19, 20-21, 22-23
2nd: eph 5:21-32
Gsp: joh 6:60-69

Audio (MP3)

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Aug 15 – Homily – Fr Maximilian W: Mary, Scripture, and Spiritual Warfare

Saturday, August 15th, 2015
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Homily #150815n ( 10min) Play – Father asks if the dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is scriptural, is it found in the Bible? Is it explicitly in there? No, but neither is the Trinity, the Hypostatic Union, nor the inerrancy of Scripture. This are all inferred from Scripture. Father points out where we find this scriptural backing for the Assumption in Luke and Revelations. He focuses on chapter 12 of Revelations which speaks of the battle between the Blessed Virgin Mary and Satan, and tells us that this spiritual warfare is still going on today, in fact, it is particularly intense today. If we are with Mary, we will triumph over the dragon, but if we are not, we will be consumed.
Ave Maria!
Mass: Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary – Solemnity – Form: OF
Readings: 
1st: rev 11:19, 12 1-6, 10
Resp: psa 45:10, 11, 12, 16
2nd: 1co 15:20-26
Gsp: luk 1:39-56

Audio (MP3)

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Aug 14 – Homily – Fr Matthias: St. Maximilian’s Greatest Work

Friday, August 14th, 2015
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Homily #150814n ( 06min) Play – Saint Maximilian Kolbe did many great things, but all of them were means to his driving goal: to become more and more the Immaculate’s. Father quotes from a letter of St. Maximilian to prove this, and asks if we are to take this as mere empty spiritual rhetoric? No, he says, this really is the truth, “All good things come to us with Her”. We must never forget this, and become more and more Her’s every day. This is the greatest thing St. Maximilian did, let us seek to do the same.
Ave Maria!
Mass: St. Maximilian Kolbe – Solemnity – Form: OF
Readings: Friday 19th Week of Ordinary Time
1st: jos 24:1-13
Resp: psa 136:1-3, 16-18, 21-22, 24
Gsp: mat 19:3-12

Audio (MP3)

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Jul 26 – Homily – Fr Matthias: The Eucharist and Practical Comments

Sunday, July 26th, 2015
Click to Play

Homily #150726n ( 17min) Play – Today’s Gospel reading is a prefigurement of the Eucharist, Father Matthias tells us. Our Lord taught that He is really present in the Eucharist, and didn’t back down when challenged. Likewise, the Church has never backed down on her teaching of transubstantiation, that after the consecration, only the appearance and physical attributes of the bread and the wine remain. The Eucharist is like spiritual food, it sustains and heals us much like physical food sustains us physically, but much more profoundly. A dead body cannot eat normal food, likewise, someone in a state of separation from God (mortal sin) cannot benefit from receiving the Eucharist, but must first receive the Sacrament of Penance. Two practical conclusions of this consideration is that it is better to receive on the tongue and not to receive communion in the hand. The Church’s preference is for communion on the tongue, and communion on the hand is only a concession to widespread disobedience. Also, we should make a thanksgiving after Holy Communion of, preferably, at least 15 minutes, for until the host dissolves, Jesus is really and truly within us. Let us not invite Him in only to ignore His abiding presence.
Ave Maria!
Mass: 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Sunday – Form: OF
Readings: 
1st: 2ki 4:42-44
Resp: psa 145:10-11, 15-16, 17-18
2nd: eph 4:1-6
Gsp: joh 6:1-15

Audio (MP3)

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Jul 20 – Homily – Fr Joachim: Following Jesus is Risky

Monday, July 20th, 2015
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Homily #150720n ( 06min) Play – St. Apollinaris is a martyr from the early Church–he was martyred in 79AD–and Father Joachim tells us about his life and sufferings for Christ. Following Jesus involves risks, even of our lives, but, as Father reminds us, we will all die and appear before the Lord. Remembering the sufferings of the Martyrs will give us the courage and strength to make the small, daily sacrifices of the Christian life.
Ave Maria!
Mass: St. Apollinaris – Opt Mem – Form: OF
Readings: Monday 16th Week of Ordinary Time
1st: exo 14:5-18
Resp: exo 15:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
Gsp: mat 12:38-42

Audio (MP3)

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Jul 13 – Homily – Fr Joachim: A God-Fearing King

Monday, July 13th, 2015
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Homily #150713n ( 08min) Play – Father gives us a short biography of St. Henry. He comments on a dream he had where “After six” was written on the wall. Henry interpreted this as being a warning of impending death, but it was actually referring to his elevation to “King of Germany”. Having of been trained to think of everything from the perspective of eternity, he proved to be a God-fearing King who desired nothing more than to advance the kingdom of Jesus Christ on earth.
Ave Maria!
Mass: St. Henry – Opt Mem – Form: OF
Readings: Monday 15th Week of Ordinary Time
1st: exo 1:8-14, 22
Resp: psa 124:1-3, 4-6, 7-8
Gsp: mat 10:34-11:1

Audio (MP3)

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Jul 12 – Homily – Fr Joachim: Being a Prophet is Tough

Sunday, July 12th, 2015
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Homily #150712n ( 05min) Play – Father reflects on the prophetic calling of the Church, and tells us that while many want the message to change, the Truth brought by Christ will not, can not, change. Many within worldly authority, society, and even within the ranks of the Church what the Church to “update” to the times. A favorite tactic is to twist and spin the words of Pope Francis. However, let us rest secure in this, that if we stay with the Truth in the face of adversity, we stay with God, and God is with us.
Ave Maria!
Mass: 15th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Sunday – Form: OF
Readings: 
1st: amo 7:12-15
Resp: psa 85:9-10, 11-12, 13-14
2nd: eph 1:3-14
Gsp: mar 6:7-13

Audio (MP3)

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A Prayer for Freedom

Friday, July 3rd, 2015

Ave Maria Meditations

O God, our Creator, from your provident hand we have received our right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. You have called us as your people and given us the right and the duty to worship you, the only true God, and your Son, Jesus Christ.

Through the power and working of your Holy Spirit, you call us to live out our faith in the midst of the world, bringing the light and the saving truth of the Gospel to every corner of society.

We ask you to bless us in our vigilance for the gift of religious liberty. Give us the strength of mind and heart to readily defend our freedoms when they are threatened; give us courage in making our voices heard on behalf of the rights of your Church and the freedom of conscience of all people of faith.

Grant, we pray, O heavenly Father, a clear and united voice to all your sons and daughters gathered in your Church in this decisive hour in the history of our nation, so that, with every trial withstood and every danger overcome—for the sake of our children, our grandchildren, and all who come after us—this great land will always be “one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”  We ask this through Christ Our Lord. Amen.

from the USCCB Website