Frozen Fever

annaelsa

Last Friday I went to see the new Cinderella movie (BEAUTIFUL!), which was preceded by a Disney short called Frozen Fever (a sorta sequel for the movie Frozen https://amoiesu.wordpress.com/2015/01/08/frozen-story-of-my-life/) and Jesus again seemed to have a story to tell me.

let me take care of you

In this short film, it’s Anna’s birthday and Elsa is determined to make it the best birthday ever in order to make up for all the time they spent apart. She is so determined that she ignores the cold that has her in constant sneezing fits. As Elsa leads her sister down a long trail of birthday surprises, her cold grows worse and Anna tries to tell her take the day off and rest. Elsa denies the fact she’s ill and persists in unfolding her array of surprises for her sister. Delirious with fever, Elsa is finally forced to admit to her sister her poor health and feels like she has ruined everything. After tucking Elsa into bed, however, Anna tells Elsa that the best birthday present ever was being able to take care of her.

present

How often do we, overflowing with love for our Jesus, go all out trying give Him the best gifts ever. This makes us all the more disappointed when our human weakness gets in the way, and in our injured pride we don’t wish to admit our weakness to the Savior who longs to help us. After finally coming clean and feeling like a failure, Jesus wraps His arms around us and repeats Anna’s words: that the best gift ever is letting Him take care of us. Jesus sees our loving efforts, and no amount of messing up will shake His love for us.

jesus and me

Happy World Day of Prayer for Vocations!

In 1963 Pope Blessed Paul VI declared Good Shepherd Sunday (Fourth Sunday of Easter) to be World Day of Prayer for Vocations.

jesus good shepherd

Prayer For Vocations to the Priestly and Religious Life
“Lord, Jesus Christ, Savior of the world, show forth, we beseech Thee, in Thy Church the Holy Spirit with whose power the apostles were so abundantly filled. We thank Thee for the blessings bestowed upon the work of priests and religious; and we pray that Thou wilt add to the number of those who now pray, labor, and sacrifice themselves for Thy glory. O good Jesus, give us more priests and religious after Thine own Heart! Amen.”
(The Prayer Book: Imprimatur-Samuel Cardinal Stritch Archbishop of Chicago May10, 1954)

little priest

Jesus longs for your gaze….upon Him

A beautiful prayer!

I Want to See God

holyhour

PSALM 25:15

Permanently my eyes are on Yahweh,
for He will free my feet from the snare. 

 Permanently, unwaveringly, immovably, let my eyes be fixed on You alone, O Most Blessed Jesus! In Your Divinely Beautiful Gaze, I find all love, all peace, all strength, all wisdom, all joy.

Like Peter who was privileged to walk on water, I can do all things in You. It is only when I look away for a moment, that I too begin to perish.

O Eternal Beauty, let no creature, no earthly attraction draw my gaze away from Your Loveliness. But when in my foolishness, I am distracted from the incomparable Glory of Your Face, grant that I may turn again immediately to You, Who have promised to free my feet from the snares of this world.

O my Adorable Jesus, the more I look upon You in the Most Blessed Sacrament…

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MINISTRY IN THE PEWS

“At that hour of the Sacrifice, at the words of the Priest, the heavens are opened, and in that mystery of Jesus Christ, the choirs of Angels are present, and things below are joined to things on high, earthly things to heavenly, and the service is both a visible and an invisible event.”    St. Gregory the Great

holy souls
There is a very good reason Mother Church uses the term “assist at Mass” where most would use the term the term “attend Mass” or “go to Mass”. This term the Church uses is full of rich meaning, though typically misunderstood. As one wise priest put it: “In paragraph 14 of the Vatican II document on the Sacred Liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium, the Church encourages us to be fully conscious and actively participating in Mass. The document states: ‘Mother Church earnestly desires that all the faithful should be led to that fully conscious and active participation in liturgical celebrations which is demanded by the very nature of the liturgy.’ Many people interpret this exhortation to mean that ‘everyone has to be doing something at Mass’ such as taking up the collection, serving at the altar, reading the readings, singing in the choir, etc. Here is what it really means: We are to be so focused at Mass–body, mind and soul–that everything we do, we do consciously and intentionally.”* If we are open to the Lord’s graces, we will find that our participation from the pews can truly be a ministry, so long as we are willing to give our all to the One who gives His all, and then the Lord will use each of our unique and individual gifts and personalities for His Kingdom in beautiful ways for which we can never thank Him enough.

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I’d like to share how I feel Our Lord has moved me in this “ministry in the pews”. My brothers have been blessed with the incredible privilege of serving at the altar. I’m very happy for them in their ministry, but I wouldn’t trade places with them for anything in the world. For me, the opportunity to assist the priests at Mass through active participation and intercessory prayer is the greatest privilege of all…and here is why:

ihs and priest
Our parish has been blessed with very inspiring priests who truly love God above all else. When they celebrate Mass you can see how true this is. They’re also very humble, and will sometimes share struggles they experience as they strive to celebrate the Mass in an even more holy manner. They’re also bold and not afraid to speak out for God concerning the lies of the world, and sometimes receive persecution on the subject. In addition, they are very busy and sometimes stressed, as our cathedral parish is among the largest in the diocese. What they need most is our prayers!

sacred host
As a member of my parish prayer group  for girls, I’ve grown more and more in our group’s charism of intercessory prayer. It creeps into every aspect of my spiritual life and it’s very welcome to do so. As I do my best to be “fully conscious and actively participating in Mass”, watching our priests celebrate the Mass causes me to recall my gratitude for our priests’ holiness. My pity for their struggles, persecution, and any sufferings that they might be currently experiencing triggers my “intercessory instinct” as a Little Flower and I feel led to pray my participation in the Mass (the Church’s most powerful prayer) especially for them. Different moments in the Mass will inspire different prayers. The Church herself has included prayers for the celebrant in the Order of the Mass, such as: “V. The Lord be with you. R. And with your spirit.” and “V. Pray, brethren (brothers and sisters), that my sacrifice and yours may be acceptable to God, the almighty Father. R. May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands for the praise and glory of his name, for our good and the good of all his holy Church.” The Mass becomes a wonderful opportunity to both offer Christ my prayers of worship and intercede for the priests as they celebrate the Mass.

mass
Just as my brothers, as altar servers, wait on the external needs of the celebrant, I in my “ministry” get to wait on the internal needs that may exist in sort of “spiritual altar service”. (And it is the soul that counts most.) This seems to really fit with our different genders if you think about it. God made men tough in heart and body, making them able to detach from any emotional complications that would distract them from being strong defenders. Physical service of God, such as holding our heavy gold candles at just the right level, is their specialty. Women have the gift of a tender and maternal heart, making them more sensitive than the typical male to the thoughts and feelings of others and more passionate in advocating for those needs. Interior work for the kingdom, such as on-fire intercession, is their specialty. Each has a unique gift not as fully possessed as the other, so their particular talent can be employed without interruption. My brothers wouldn’t be able to get things for the celebrant as quickly if they were praying in the pew with me, and I would be unable to notice and pray for which ever graces are needed as well if I were rushing around in the sanctuary with them. Each of us has a very important role to fill.

i lay down my life for the sheep
The role that I fill greatly benefits my soul as well. Many will probably agree with me that we often learn something best when we share it with others. As I try to pay as close attention to the Mass as possible (not always easy for my ADD brain), and pray to Our Lord over the celebrant’s benefit from the Mass, I myself get to be more enriched by it. It is also a very awesome experience when I see the prayers I pray answered in a very powerful way. When you see someone having an amazing encounter with the Lord, it gets to you as well, and I can never thank the Lord enough for this amazing privilege that results in such wonderful marvels of the Lord’s goodness.

Is Jesus doing a poor job of heading your church?

A good apologetics tip!

CatholicBibleTalk

Next time you talk to a Protestant and infalliblity comes up.  When he begins to complain that no man can be infallible.  Ask him, “Isn’t Jesus the head of your church?”

And when he says, “Yes.”  Then ask him, “Then why is your church fallible?  Is Jesus doing a poor job of heading your church?”

Because, if Jesus is the head of a church, that church is infallible.  But if the church is fallible, then Jesus is not the head of that church.  Jesus is infallible, therefore He leads infallibly.  Or what does it mean to be the head of a church?

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The St. Benedict Medal

The St. Benedict Medal is a very powerful sacramental, especially when it comes to protection from devils.

stbenedictmedalfront

The inscriptions on the front read:

center — Crux s. patris Benedicti (The Cross of our holy father Benedict)

bottom — Ex SM Casino MDCCCLXXX (from holy Monte Casino, 1880)

edge — Eius in obitu nostro praesentia muniamur! (May we be strengthened by his presence in the hour of our death!)

stbenedictmedalback

The initials on the back stand for:

cross — Crux sacra sit mihi lux! Nunquam draco sit mihi dux! (May the holy cross be my light! May the dragon never be my guide!)

angles of the cross — Crux s. patris Benedicti (The Cross of our holy father Benedict)

top — Pax (peace)

edge — Vade retro Satana! Nunquam suade mihi vana! Sunt mall quae libas. Ipse venena bibas! (Begone Satan! Never tempt me with your vanities! What you offer me is evil. Drink the poison yourself!)

stbenedictmedalcrucifix

Sometimes this medal is placed inside a crucifix to combine two powerful sacramentals.

(A valid St. Benedict Medal must be made from metal, not paper, wood, tin foil, or other materials.)

For more info on the meaning and history of the medal, go to: http://www.osb.org/gen/medal.html

See also the book, THE MEDAL OR CROSS OF S. BENEDICT, ITS ORIGIN, MEANING, AND PRIVILEGES  BY DOM P. GUÉRANGER, ABBOT OF SOLESMES http://www.liturgialatina.org/benedictine/stbenmedal.htm

Happy Divine Mercy Sunday!

miserere nobis

“a plenary indulgence, granted under the usual conditions (sacramental confession, Eucharistic communion and prayer for the intentions of Supreme Pontiff) to the faithful who, on the Second Sunday of Easter or Divine Mercy Sunday, in any church or chapel, in a spirit that is completely detached from the affection for a sin, even a venial sin, take part in the prayers and devotions held in honor of Divine Mercy, or who, in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament exposed or reserved in the tabernacle, recite the Our Father and the Creed, adding a devout prayer to the merciful Lord Jesus (e.g. ‘Merciful Jesus, I trust in you!’);

A partial indulgence, granted to the faithful who, at least with a contrite heart, pray to the merciful Lord Jesus a legitimately approved invocation.” — https://www.ewtn.com/devotionals/mercy/decree.htm

Divine Mercy Chaplet in song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DYtxixBnVGg

Diary of St. Faustina pdf: https://liturgicalyear.files.wordpress.com/2012/10/divine-mercy-in-my-soul.pdf

st faustina