The Precious Blood of Christ About 96 A.D., Pope Clement wrote: "Let us fix our gaze on the Blood of Christ and realize how truly precious It is, seeing that It was poured out for our salvation and brought the grace of conversion to the whole world." The Church's devotional life is rich and vast. Do you know that each month is dedicated to a specific devotion? The month of July focuses upon the Precious Blood of Our Lord, shed on Calvary for love of each one of us. The first Sunday of July was traditionally the Feast of the Precious Blood. By His Blood we are saved. Through His Blood, the sacraments of our holy Church were born. Jesus' Blood washes every soul devoted to Him. Catholic Spirituality
There are as many ways to pray as there are people who do pray, but there is something special meant by terms like "Benedictine Spirituality," "Carmelite Spirituality" or "Ignatian Spirituality." During this month of July, we celebrate feasts linked to these three devotional paths. Let us examine a bit about each of these feasts and the paths to prayer that each of them teaches.
On Pentecost: Happy Birthday
Pentecost is a Greek word meaning fifty days, and it was originally a Jewish celebration coming fifty days after Passover. Coming on the fiftieth day after Easter (hint: start counting on the Easter Vigil!), Pentecost is the day on which the Holy Spirit descended upon Mary and the apostles, as they waited and prayed expectantly in the upper room. Jesus had promised that "the Paraclete, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send in my name will instruct you in everything." He does not disappoint. His promises are true and they are fulfilled.
The Sacred Heart: What Does It Mean?
Most Catholics have some familiarity with the image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. For older Catholics, it was a requisite wall hanging, and their homes and families were consecrated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus with the "Enthronement" of that image. What is meant by this concept, this image of Jesus' Heart exposed, in flames, surrounded by thorns, surmounted by a cross, bleeding from a lance wound, and emanating rays of divine light? And what is meant by "devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus?"
Mary, Undoer of Knots
We are blessed more than we can conceive or imagine, having as our advocate in heaven, the holy mother of God, the Blessed Virgin Mary. The month of May is one of the two months (October is the other) when we give heightened attention and honor to the Virgin Mary. Mother of Jesus, and our mother, too, Mary is filled with grace, and is always ready to bring us and our needs before her Son. Like every mother, she wants only the best for her Son, so she will polish up our offerings and present us in the best of lights, making perfect the gift of our imperfect offering. Likewise, she loves us unconditionally and wants the best for us. We need only ask her loving intercession.
Pope Francis on Our Lady the Undoer of Knots
This event of the Year of Faith is devoted to Mary, the Mother of Christ and the Mother of the Church, our Mother. The statue of Our Lady which has come from Fatima helps us to feel her presence in our midst. It is a fact: Mary always brings us to Jesus. She is a woman of faith, a true believer. But we can ask: What was Mary's faith like?
The Easter Triduum
The Easter Triduum, marking the days of Jesus' passion and resurrection, is the most important time of the church year. It begins with the evening Mass of Holy Thursday, reaches its high point in the Easter Vigil, and closes on Easter Sunday evening. Prepared by the days of Lent, Christians celebrate on these holiest of days the saving work God has accomplished in Christ.
Calling all Apostles of Devine Mercy
From the diary of a young Polish nun, a special devotion began spreading throughout the world in the 1930s. The message is nothing new, but is a reminder of what the Church has always taught through scripture and tradition: that God is merciful and forgiving and that we, too, must show mercy and forgiveness. But in the Divine Mercy devotion, the message takes on a powerful new focus, calling people to a deeper understanding that God's love is unlimited and available to everyone - especially the greatest sinners.
Karol Wojtyla was born in 1920, the youngest of three children in Wadowice, Poland. Karol was a brilliant student with a natural facility for languages and a love for music and theater. Eventually he would learn at least 12 different languages, an asset he would use again and again in the world travels that marked his papacy.
In the celebration of Mass we raise our hearts, minds and voices in worship of God. As creatures composed of body and spirit, our prayer is not confined to our minds, hearts and voices, but is expressed by our bodies as well. When our bodies participate in our prayer we pray with our whole person, as the unity of body and soul God created us to be.
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
As Lent draws near, I would like to offer some helpful thoughts on our path of conversion as individuals and as a community. These insights are inspired by the words of Saint Paul: 'For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich'. The Apostle was writing to the Christians of Corinth to encourage them to be generous in helping the faithful in Jerusalem who were in need. What do these words of Saint Paul mean for us Christians today? What does this invitation to poverty, a life of evangelical poverty, mean to us today?