Saturday, June 12, 2021

The Most Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Year of Saint Joseph

Year of the Family "Amoris Laetitia The Joy of Love"

Saints: Saint Onuphrius (d. 400); Blessed Alphonsus Mazurek and Companions (20th century); Blessed Hilary Januszewski (1907-1945)

Readings of the Day

RB: Ch 9 The Number of Psalms at the Night Office

Mass: Is 61:9-11; Resp Ps (1 Sm 2) or 2 Cor 5:14-21; Resp Ps 103; Lk 2:41-51

My heart exults in the Lord, my Savior.

IMMACULATE MARY, 
PRAY FOR US.

United in faith and prayer, let's join Mary today, dear Mary, Mother of Jesus, "she who heard the word of God and lived by it-she who listened, then pondered in her heart." Cardinal Basil Hume adds this: "It is a feminine trait to listen, to receive, to watch. Perhaps that is why more women pray than men. Perhaps that is why among contemplatives there are more women than men-it is the 'feminine' which listens and waits. It is a feminine trait, also, to see, to observe. The wine has run out. Mary notices, and being a woman she has a practical mind" (Searching for God, p. 160). 

When we pray, the voice of the heart must be heard more than the proceedings from the mouth.
(Saint Bonaventure, 1221-1274)

Mary's heart is like a pearl of incomparable splendor, formed and smoothed by patient acceptance of God's will through the mysteries of Jesus meditated in prayer.
(Pope Francis, Twitter, June 12, 2021)

MARY, MOTHER OF MERCY,
SAINT ONUPHRIUS,
BLESSED ALPHONSUS MAZAREK AND COMPANIONS,
BLESSED HILARY JANUSZEWSKI,
SAINT JOSEPH, MOST CHASTE,
PRAY FOR US.

Today's photo: This is from 2016, when I had the privilege of making the Blessed Virgin Mary for our creche. Mary, Mother of Divine Grace, pray for us.

© Gertrude Feick 2021

Friday, June 11, 2021

Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

Year of Saint Joseph

Year of the Family "Amoris Laetitia The Joy of Love"

In other years: Saint Barnabas the Apostle

Readings of the Day

RB: Ch 8 The Divine Office at Night

Mass: Hosea 11:1, 3-4, 8c-9; Resp Ps (Is 12); Eph 3:8-12, 14-19; Jn 19:31-37

May Christ dwell in your hearts through faith.

HEART OF JESUS, PIERCED WITH A LANCE,
HAVE MERCY ON US.

Happy Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Why not pray with the Litany to the Sacred Heart today. What is your favorite invocation? May it be on your lips and in your heart throughout this most glorious day. Heart of Jesus, aflame with love for us, have mercy on us.

Perhaps take some time too with words from Karl Rahner (1904-1984), beautifully read at Vigils this morning. They are from his little book of meditations, Encounters with Silence, first published in 1965. 

Jesus has really told me that He loves me, and His word has come from the depths of His human heart. And His heart is Your heart, O God of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Thus, if this human heart of Your Son is unspeakably richer and greater than my heart, it is so only in that love and that goodness which can never be anything else but love and goodness. It can never conceal within itself the awe-fullness of Your Infinity, which is always all else as well.
Grant, O Infinite God, that I may ever cling fast to Jesus Christ, my Lord. Let His heart reveal to me how You are disposed toward me. I shall look upon His heart when I desire to know who You are. The eye of my mind is blinded whenever it looks only at Your Infinity, in which You are totally present in each and every aspect at once. Then I am surrounded by the darkness of Your unboundedness, which is harsher than all my earthly nights. But instead I shall gaze upon His human heart, O God of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and then I shall be sure that You love me.
But I still have one more request. Make my heart like that of Your son. Make it as great and rich in love as His, so that my brothers-or at least one of them, sometime in my life-can enter through this door and there learn that You love him. God of Our Lord Jesus Christ, let me find you in His heart.

And some final words from my patron, Saint Gertrude the Great of Helfta (1256-1301/2), oh she who was so close to the heart of Jesus. It is said that Jesus told one of Gertrude's sisters at Helfta, I live in the heart of Gertrude. Jesus lives in your heart too. Share the love Jesus has for you with others today. 

May my soul bless you, Lord God, my creator! ... you have granted me the priceless gift of your familiar friendship, giving me in various ways, to my indescribable delight, the noblest treasure of the divinity, your divine heart, now bestowing it freely, now as a sign of our mutual familiarity, exchanging it with mine. How often you have revealed to me your secret counsels and your pleasures, melting my soul with your loving caresses. 
(Gertrude of Helfta, The Herald of Divine Love, Book II, Ch 23) 

SAINT BARNABAS THE APOSTLE,
SAINT GERTRUDE THE GREAT OF HELFTA,
SAINT MARGARET MARY ALACOQUE,
SAINT CLAUDE LA COLOMBIERE,
SAINT JOSEPH, DILIGENT PROTECTOR OF CHRIST,
PRAY FOR US.

Today's photo: Saint Gertrude the Great of Helfta, through the hand of Brother Claude, OSB. She hangs outside the Chapel at Queen of Angels Monastery, home to the Benedictine Sisters of Mt. Angel, Oregon. 

© Gertrude Feick 2021

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Thursday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

Year of Saint Joseph

Year of the Family "Amoris Laetitia The Joy of Love"

Readings of the Day

RB: Ch 7:62-70

Mass: 2 Cor 3:15-4:1, 3-6; Resp Ps 85; Mt 5:20-26

The glory of the Lord will dwell in our land.

JESUS, OUR WAY AND OUR LIFE,
HAVE MERCY ON US.

Jesus is pretty clear in today's Gospel. Our Lord said to His disciples, He says to us: Whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgement ... (Mt 5:22). Does someone have something against you? Then reconcile. Make haste and settle with your opponent (Mt 5:23-25). Or, as our holy father Saint Benedict tells us: "Pray for your enemies out of love for Christ. If you have a dispute with someone, make peace with him before the sun goes down" (RB 4:72-73), especially important if you want to have a good night's sleep. A couple other heavy hitter saints have this to say:

No one heals himself by wounding another.
(Saint Ambrose, 340-397)

Pardon one another so that later on you will not remember the injury. The recollection of an injury is in itself wrong. It adds to our anger, nurtures our sin and hates what is good. It is a rusty arrow and poison for the soul. It puts all virtue to flight.
(Saint Francis de Paola, 1416-1507)

SAINT JOSEPH, MOST FAITHFUL,
PRAY FOR US. 

Today's photo: Let light shine out of darkness.

© Gertrude Feick 2021

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Wednesday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

Year of Saint Joseph

Year of the Family "Amoris Laetitia The Joy of Love"

Saints: Saint Ephraem, Deacon, Doctor (306-373); Saint Columba (521?-597); Saint Jose de Anchieta (1534-1597)

Readings of the Day

RB: Ch 7:60-61

Mass: 2 Cor 3:4-11; Resp Ps 99; Mt 5:17-19

Holy is the Lord, our God.

JESUS, ETERNAL WISDOM,
HAVE MERCY ON US.

In today's Gospel, Jesus tells us that whoever obeys and teaches His commandments will be called greatest in the Kingdom of heaven (Mt 5:19). Everyday Jesus tells us to love one another as He loves us. By this, says Our Lord, all will know that we are His disciples, if we have love for one another (Jn 13:34-35). And it doesn't necessarily take a lot of words to obey the Lord's commandments, teach them to others, and to love one another. So we turn to Saint Benedict, now on the eleventh step of humility: "The eleventh step of humility is that a monk speaks gently and without laughter, seriously and with becoming modesty, briefly and reasonably, but without raising his voice, as it is written: 'A wise man is known by his few words'" (RB 7:60-61).

Lord, shed your light upon our darkened souls the brilliant light of your wisdom so that we may be enlightened and serve you with renewed purity.
(From a sermon by Saint Ephrem, deacon, in Office of Readings, June 9)

SAINT EPHRAEM,
SAINT COLUMBA,
SAINT JOSE DE ANCHIETA,
SAINT JOSEPH,
PRAY FOR US.

Today's photo: 'Til next time ...

© Gertrude Feick 2021

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Tuesday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

Year of Saint Joseph

Year of the Family "Amoris Laetitia The Joy of Love"

Saints: Saint James Berthieu (1838-1896); Saint William of York (-1154)

Readings of the Day

RB: Ch 7:59

Mass: 2 Cor 1:18-22; Resp Ps 119; Mt 5:13-16

Steady my footsteps according to your promise.

JESUS, BRIGHTNESS OF ETERNAL LIGHT,
HAVE MERCY ON US.

In whatever you are about today, let "your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father" (Mt 5:16). And as Saint Benedict reminds us, we do all things so that God may be glorified (RB 57:9/1 Pt 4:11).

Remember that Christian life is one of action; not of speech and daydreams.
I intend that every moment of time past, present and future be employed by me and all creatures in the best way.
In heaven we shall rest.
(Saint Vincent Pallotti, 1795-1850)

Hell is full of the talented, but Heaven of the energetic.
(Saint Jane Frances de Chantal, 1572-1641)

SAINT JAMES BERTHIEU,
SAINT WILLIAM OF YORK,
SAINT JOSEPH,
PRAY FOR US.

Today's photo: Whoa. Things are a little shaky at first.

© Gertrude Feick 2021

Monday, June 7, 2021

Monday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

Year of Saint Joseph

Year of the Family "Amoris Laetitia The Joy of Love"

Saints: Saint Colman of Dromore (late 5th, early 6th centuries); Saint Robert of Newminster (c.100-1159); Blessed Anne of Saint Bartholomew (1549-1626)

Readings of the Day

RB: Ch 7:56-58

Mass: 2 Cor 1:1-7; Resp Ps 34; Mt 5:1-12

Look to him that you may be radiant with joy.

JESUS, MEEK AND HUMBLE OF HEART,
HAVE MERCY ON US.

There is plenty of wisdom in the ninth step of humility: "The ninth step of humility is that a monk controls his tongue and remains silent, not speaking unless asked a question, for Scripture warns, In a flood of words you will not avoid sinning (Prov 10:19), and A talkative man goes about aimlessly on earth (Ps 139 [140]:12) (RB 7:56-58). Rejoice and be glad for your reward will be great in heaven (Mt 5:12).

Christianity shows its greatness when it is hated by the world.
(From a letter to the Romans by Saint Ignatius of Antioch, bishop and martyr, in Office of Readings, Monday, Tenth Week in Ordinary Time)

SAINT COLMAN OF DROMORE,
SAINT ROBERT OF NEWMINSTER,
BLESSED ANNE OF SAINT BARTHOLOMEW,
SAINT JOSEPH,
PRAY FOR US.

Today's photo: The first of three looks at the newest addition to the neighborhood. Welcome to Redwoods little one.

© Gertrude Feick 2021

Sunday, June 6, 2021

The Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi)

Year of Saint Joseph

Year of the Family "Amoris Laetitia The Joy of Love"

In other years: Saint Norbert (1080-1134); Saint Marcellin Champagnat (1789-1840); Saint Jarlath (-540/550)

Readings of the Day

RB: Ch 7:55

Mass: Ex 24:3-8; Resp Ps 116; Heb 9:11-15; Sequence Laud, O Zion; Mk 14:12-16, 22-26

Laud, O Zion, your salvation.

HEART OF JESUS, TABERNACLE OF THE MOST HIGH,
HAVE MERCY ON US.

There are so many things to consider about today's solemnity that, sadly, I don't know what to write! Memories go to at least two years, one when I had the privilege of being in Orvieto, Italy, on this great feast. Orvieto with it's magnificent cathedral and great Eucharistic procession with participants dressed in period costume. And there was one year in Rome, when I remember preparation for the Eucharistic procession through the neighborhood with the local parish. I see still one of the sisters where I lived sweeping the sidewalk and carefully clearing the area surrounding the convent for the procession. I also remember the name of a textbook I had in early theological studies entitled Between Memory and Hope by Maxwell E. Johnson. I thought of it especially last night when I listened to the reading proclaimed at Vigils. It was an excerpt from a reflection or homily given in 2014 by Bishop Robert F. Morneau, quoted in the publication Give Us This Day (June 2014). Perhaps I also got some comfort in knowing that I am not alone in putting into words the meaning of this great feast.

Thousands of books have been written on the theology of the Eucharist. Theologians have struggled for centuries to put into words the overwhelming mystery of God's self-giving in the sacrament of Jesus' body and blood. That struggle continues ...
One of the great doctors of the Church, St. Thomas Aquinas, maintained that the Eucharist has three major components: memory of the past, a present grace, and hope of eternal life. We experience all of these; we remember what Jesus did at the Last Supper in giving his body and blood and then dying on the cross; we celebrate at the altar God's love and life (grace) that nourish us to go forth in compassion and service; and we look forward to the day when, with the communion of saints, we will participate in the heavenly banquet.
On this feast of the Body and Blood of Christ we cry out our "Amen!" So be it! In affirming our faith in the Eucharist we are also committing ourselves to serving the poor, showing compassion to the suffering, forgiving those who have injured us, and expressing our gratitude for all God's gifts.

After all, as we know from the Lumen Gentium Light of the Nations, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, the Eucharist is the source and summit of the whole Christian life (LG 11). Amen.

Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, 
but only say the word and my soul shall be healed. 

SAINT NORBERT,
SAINT MARCELLIN CHAMPAGNAT,
SAINT JARLATH,
SAINT JOSEPH, 
PRAY FOR US.

Today's photo: Yesterday, early evening. Laud with hymns of exaltation, Christ, your king and true shepherd.

© Gertrude Feick 2021