Thursday, 28 May 2020

Oremus - a collection of Latin and English Prayers

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Foreword: Fr Glen Tattersall
Editors: Andrew Rutherford, Harvey Inamac, Dickson Leong
Illustrator: Alexandra Dooley
Collection and preparation of prayers: Josh Francisco



Tuesday, 19 May 2020

Wednesday, 15 April 2020

Saint Hunna

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The 15th of April is the feast day of Saint Hunna (d. 679). She is also known as Una. She is the patron saint of laundresses, laundry workers, and washerwomen.

Saint Hunna was born in Alsace France and was a daughter of a Duke. She married a nobleman though both did not indulge themselves in luxuries. Instead, they opened their home to the poor. Saint Deodatus, the bishop, when he resigned from his See, lived with them and they grew in sanctity from his religious instruction. Hunna had a son, whom he named after Saint Deodatus. Her son joined the monastery and is also a saint. After her husband died, Saint Hunna continued spending her life serving the poor, especially the women in Strasbourg, France. She tended the sick and poor, doing their laundry and mending. She was known as the “Holy Washerwoman.” She gave away her wealth and property in order to build churches and monasteries. Many miracles were attributed to her, and she was canonised by Pope Leo X in 1520.

Tuesday, 14 April 2020

Saint Lidwina

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Lidwina's fall on the ice, Wood drawing from the 1498 edition of John Brugman's Vita of Lidwina
The 14th of April is the feast day of Saint Lidwina. She is the patron saint of chronically ill, ice skaters, town of Schiedam.

The following is from Catholic Encyclopedia:
Born at Schiedam, Holland, 18 April 1380; died 14 April, 1433. Her father, Peter by name, came of a noble family while her mother Petronella, born at Kethel, Holland, was a poor country girl. Both were poor. Very early in her life St. Lidwina was drawn towards the Mother of God and prayed a great deal before the miraculous image of Our Lady of Schiedam. During the winter of the year of 1395, Lidwina went skating with her friends, one of whom caused her to fall upon some ice with such violence that she broke a rib in her right side. This was the beginning of her martyrdom. No medical skill availed to cure her. Gangrene appeared in the wound caused by the fall and spread over her entire body. For years she lay in pain which seemed to increase constantly. Some looked on her with suspicion, as being under the influence of the evil spirit. Her pastor, Andries, brought her an unconsecrated host, but the saint distinguished it at once. But God rewarded her with a wonderful gift of prayer and also with visions. Numerous miracles took place at her bed-side. The celebrated preacher and seer, Wermbold of Roskoop, visited her after previously beholding her in spirit. The pious Arnold of Schoonhoven treated her as a friend. Hendrik Mande wrote for her consolation a pious tract in Dutch. When Joannes Busch brought this to her, he asked her what she thought of Hendrik Mande's visions, and she answered that they came from God. In a vision she was shown a rose-bush with the words, "When this shall be in bloom, your suffering will be at an end." In the spring of the year 1433, she exclaimed, "I see the rose-bush in full bloom!" From her fifteenth to her fifty-third year, she suffered every imaginable pain; she was one sore from head to foot and was greatly emaciated. On the morning of Easter-day, 1433, she was in deep contemplation and beheld, in a vision, Christ coming towards her to administer the Sacrament of Extreme Unction. She died in the odour of great sanctity. At once her grave became a place of pilgrimage, and as early as 1434 a chapel was built over it. Joannes Brugmann and Thomas à Kempis related the history of her life, and veneration of her on the part of the people increased unceasingly. In 1615 her relics were conveyed to Brussels, but in 1871 they were returned to Schiedam. On 14 March, 1890, Leo XIII put the official sanction of the Church upon that veneration which had existed for centuries.
COUDURIER, Vie de la bienheureuse Lidwine (Paris, 1862); RIBADENEIRA, La vie de s. Lidwine, vierge (Valenciennes, 1615); THOMAS À KEMPIS, Vita Lidewigis virginis in Opera Omnia, iv (Freiburg, 1905); HUYSMANS, Sainte Lydwine de Schiedam (Paris, 1901).
P. Albers.


Monday, 13 April 2020

Blessed Margaret of Castello

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A statue of Margaret of Castello at her shrine in Saint Patrick Church (Columbus, Ohio)
The 13th of April is the feast day of Blessed Margaret of Castello (1287 – 12 April 1320). She is the patron saint of Pro-life movements, disabled people and blind people.

Her parents were noble Italians who wanted her to be the child of their dreams. However, she was blind, a dwarf, lame and a hunchback. Her parents were horrified at her appearance when she was a newborn and tried to hide her hoping to keep her existence private. A servant took pity on her and had her baptised, naming her Margaret which meant “Pearl.” At the age of six years old she was almost discovered. Her father then put her in a cell inside the wall of a church, providing necessities to her through a window. The parish priest educated Maraget and she lived this way until she was 16 years old. Her parents took her on a pilgrimage to a shrine hoping to have her miraculously healed. They prayed for her to be cured of her deformities. When it became obvious that she would not be cured, they abandoned her on the streets, returning home and she never saw them again. She begged for food and the town’s poor sheltered her in their homes taking turns to do so. She became a Dominican Tertiary and served the sick, dying and the imprisoned. She had mystical experiences and was known for her joy and sanctity. She died when she was 33 years old and hundreds of miracles attributed to her intercession occurred before and after her death, her body is incorrupt.

Sunday, 12 April 2020

Saint Teresa of the Andes

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Portrait of Saint Teresa of the Andes

The 12th of April is the feast day of Saint Teresa of Jesus of Los Andes (13 July 1900 – 12 April 1920). She was born as Juana Fernández Solar. She is the patron saint against disease, against illness, ill people, young people, Santiago and Los Andes.

She was born in Chile, her family were upper class. As a child, she was very pious and was deeply spiritually being devoted to Jesus and Mary. However, she was stubborn and self-centred which she sought to overcome while preparing herself for her First Communion at the age of 10 years old. After reading the autobiography of St Therese of Lisieux, she decided to become a Carmelite nun. Five years later in 1919, when she was 19 years old she entered the Carmelite monastery of Los Andes. She wrote letters where she mentioned her spiritual life. After praying it was revealed to her that she would die at a young age and she accepted this with joy. Only a few months after entering the monastery, she contracted typhoid fever and died in April 1920 during Holy Week. She was permitted to profess her vows before her death. In 1993 Pope St John Paul canonised her, and she was the first Chilean and first Discalced Carmelite nun outside of Europe to be recognised as a saint.

Saturday, 11 April 2020

Saint Gemma Galgani

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Saint Gemma Galgani

The 11th of April is the feast day of Saint Maria Gemma Umberta Galgani (March 12, 1878 – April 11, 1903). She is the patron saint of students, pharmacists, paratroopers and parachutists, loss of parents, those suffering back injury or back pain, those suffering with headaches/migraines, those struggling with temptations to impurity and those seeking purity of heart.

She was born in Italy, the fifth child of eight children to a pharmacist. When she was young, her mother and three of her siblings died. When she was 18 years old, her father died too, and she had to take care of her younger siblings. Rejecting two marriage proposals, she tried to enter the Passionist as a religious. But she was rejected because of her bad health. She instead became a Tertiary member of the Order. She developed spinal meningitis and was miraculously healed, attributing this to the intercession of Saint Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows and Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. She experienced suffering as she united herself with the Passion of Christ and had many visions, being visited often by her guardian angel, Jesus and His Mother, Mary. She is known as a mystic and developed the stigmata at the age of 21, according to her spiritual director. She died on the Vigil of Easter, aged 25 years old.

Friday, 10 April 2020

Saint Bademus

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Saint Bademus (Little Pictorial Lives of the Saints, 1878)

The 10th of April is the feast day of Saint Bademus (d. 10 April 376). He is also known as Bademe or Vadim.

The following is from Butler’s Lives of the Saints:

BADEMUS was a rich and noble citizen of Bethlapeta in Persia, who founded a monastery near that city, which he governed with great sanctity. He conducted his religious in the paths of perfection with sweetness, prudence, and charity. To crown his virtue, God permitted him, with seven of his monks, to be apprehended by the followers of King Sapor, in the thirty-sixth year of his persecution. He lay four months in a dungeon, loaded with chains, during which lingering martyrdom he every day received a number of stripes. But he triumphed over his torments by the patience and joy with which he suffered them for Christ. At the same time, a Christian lord named Nersan, Prince of Aria, was cast into prison because he refused to adore the sun. At first he showed some resolution; but at the sight of tortures his constancy failed him, and he promised to conform. The king, to try if his change was sincere, ordered Bademus to be introduced into the prison of Nersan, which was a chamber in the royal palace, and sent word to Nersan that if he would despatch Bademus, he should be restored to his liberty and former dignities. The wretch accepted the condition; a sword was put into his hand, and he advanced to plunge it into the breast of the abbot. But being seized with a sudden terror, he stopped short, and remained some time without being able to lift up his arm to strike. He had neither courage to repent, nor heart to accomplish his crime. He strove, however, to harden himself, and continued with a trembling hand to aim at the sides of the martyr. Fear, shame, remorse, and respect for the martyr made his strokes forceless and unsteady; and so great was the number of the martyr’s wounds, that the bystanders were in admiration at his invincible patience. After four strokes, the martyr’s head was severed from the trunk. Nersan a short time after, falling into public disgrace, perished by the sword. The body of St. Bademus was reproachfully cast out of the city by the infidels, but was secretly carried away and interred by the Christians. His disciples were released from their chains four years afterward, upon the death of King Sapor. St. Bademus suffered on the 10th of April in the year 376.

Reflection.—Oh! what ravishing delights does the soul taste which is accustomed, by a familiar habit, to converse in the heaven of its own interior with the Three Persons of the adorable Trinity! Worldlings wonder how holy solitaries can pass their whole time buried in the most profound solitude and silence. But those who have had any experience of this happiness are surprised, with far greater reason, how it is possible that any souls which are created to converse eternally with God should here live in constant dissipation, seldom entertaining a devout thought of Him Whose charms and sweet conversation eternally ravish all the blessed.

Thursday, 9 April 2020

Blessed Katarzyna Celestyna Faron

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The 9th of April is the feast day of Blessed Katarzyna Celestyna Faron (1913-1944). She is also known as Catherine Celestine Faron.

She was born in Zabrzez, Poland, was an orphan at the age of 5 and was raised by pious relatives who had no children of their own. She entered the Congregation of the Sisters Servants of Mary Immaculate in 1930 and served as a kindergarten teacher and catechist. After World War II started, she led the religious house, ran an orphanage and helped the poor. In 1943 on the feast of the Epiphany, she was arrested by the Gestapo, charged with conspiracy against the Nazis and was sent to the Auschwitz concentration camp. There she was assigned to dig ditches, though she praised God in her suffering. There she developed typhoid fever and tuberculosis. Since she had completed the First Fridays devotion of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, she believed she would not die without Holy Communion, promised by Our Lord. On the feast of the Immaculate Conception, on the 8th of December 1943, a priest brought secretly the Holy Communion and she received it as viaticum. She prayed on a rosary made of bread and offered her sufferings for the conversion of a priest who had fallen away from the Church. He later returned to the Faith. On Easter morning, she died and is recognised as one of the 108 beatified Polish Catholic Martyrs martyred during World War II by the Nazi Germans.

Wednesday, 8 April 2020

Saint Julie Billiart

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Saint Julie Billiart painted in 1830, by an unknown artist

The 8th of April is the feast day of Saint Julie Billiart (12 July 1751 — 8 April 1816). She is the patron saint against poverty; bodily ills; and disease.

Born in Cuvilly, France, Saint Julie Billiart’s family were large and prosperous farmers. She memorised the catechism by heart by the age of 7 years old and would teach it to her fellow playmates. At the age of nine, she received her first communion and took a vow of chastity. In her teens, she already had the reputation of being a saint. She worked in the fields when her family was in financial strife. However, when she was twenty-two she became paralysed and was bedridden for the next 22 years. She received Holy Communion daily, made altar laces and linens, and catechised the children in the village who stood by her bedside. During the French Revolution, she helped the priests and was smuggled to safety while hidden in a hay cart. She hid in the home of a countess and soon had young and noble ladies around her bed whom she taught the interior life. From this group of ladies, she founded the Institute of the Sisters of Notre Dame, who educated girls and trained catechists. She made her vows in 1804 and was cured of her paralysis. She then made over a hundred journeys, founding 15 convents of her order.

Our Lady of Medjugorje

March 25, 2020 Message to Marija

Dear children! I am with you all these years to lead you to the way of salvation. Return to my Son; return to prayer and fasting. Little children, permit God to speak to your heart, because Satan is reigning and wants to destroy your lives and the earth on which you walk. Be courageous and decide for holiness. You will see conversion in your hearts and families; prayer will be heard; God will hear your cries and give you peace. I am with you and am blessing you all with my motherly blessing. Thank you for having responded to my call.

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