Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Prince of Peace

Peace and Goodwill to all !

Christ is born !

                                                            Joy ! Joy ! Joy ! 
                                                 Christmas is a time of Joy , Our Saviour is born .
The saints before us surely rejoiced in the Saviour's birth as our saint Maximilian Maria Kolbe would have done , celebrating with his confreres and reaching out to the world with the written word ,inspiring goodwill , peace amongst people.
Family is paramount at Christmas time, sharing feasts, gifts and company , so it should be,  with always the new born infant Jesus,  the centre and reason for our goodwill . Reality is many find Christmas and any major holiday a time of melancholy , stress, with no family or friends to share with, many families are broken , divided, where is the Prince of Peace for them ? The answer is He is there for them . Look and you will find Him! He is gazing at the lonely ones with such love in His eyes. He isn't oblivious to our troubles and suffering ,He is right there with us holding our hand , wiping away every tear. He came as the poorest not even a crib for a bed ,as the the beautiful carol proclaims.
Peace is for the taking, He is offering it to everyone without exception .
Remember Mama , so St. Maximilian called Our Lady , she in quiet joy and anticipation awaits Her Beloved , as the preface of Advent in the liturgy of the Mass tells us , she 'longed for Him with Love beyond all telling ' .
God Bless and peace in Christ !

Tuesday, December 3, 2013



                        A new liturgical year  

O come , O come  Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel 
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Christ the King

This feast closes the liturgical year and is as a synthesis of the entire salvific mystery
His Kingdom is a kingdom of servitude, love, peace, truth, life, holiness, grace and justice. He must reign in our lives , minds, wills and actions, drawing others into the kingdom by our total submission and desire of Christ, being love for others, revealing the face of the humble King to those that are in our lives.
Christ as King being first  recognized  by a fellow condemned criminal in his request, ' Jesus remember me when You come into Your Kingdom ', was rewarded with a promise of Paradise with Him that very day. Jesus in His abundance of generosity gave this thief more then he could dream of because he saw the majesty of Christ the King in a broken, suffering , condemned and dying criminal on the cross.
Such is Christ the King that they that believe and honour Him with sincere hearts are shown love infinitum.

Christ the King

                    ' The Lord will reign forever and will give His people the gift of Peace '  ,
                                                                                                                 Ps 28:10-11

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Eternal rest grant unto them !
Let perpetual light shine upon them !
May they rest in peace , 

Friday, November 8, 2013

De Profundis,(Psalm 129)

Out of the depths I have cried to Thee O Lord ! Lord hear my voice.
Let Thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplication.
If Thou, O Lord wilt mark iniquities, Lord who shall stand it ?
But there is forgiveness with Thee, because of Thy law I wait for Thee, O Lord
My soul waiteth on His word, my soul hopeth in the Lord
From the morning watch even until night let Israel hope in the Lord
For with the Lord there is mercy and with Him is plentiful redemption
And He shall redeem Israel, from all their iniquities.

Psalm 130 (129) is a partially indulgenced prayer, one of 7 penitential psalms,
in commemorations of the dead it may be sung as part of vespers.
It's title 'De Profundis', comes from the Latin version ,
 in translation,  'Out of the depths'.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013


                   Eternal rest grant unto them, let perpetual Light shine upon them
       May their souls and the souls of the faithful departed rest in peace .Amen

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Month of the holy souls

On the 1st of November is All Saints  Day  followed by All Souls Day on the 2nd ,
The whole month of November dedicated to the Holy Souls.
The Church reminds us of those who have won the eternal crown in Heaven and those souls called Holy because they no longer are able to sin but destined for Heaven, and through the Mercy of God are  still being purified in  Purgatory.
We remember our loved ones , friends and benefactors who have died and we pray for them, the most efficacious way by offering the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass , the Holy Rosary, the Way of the Cross and personal prayer especially before the Blessed Sacrament ever present in the tabernacle of our churches.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Holy Father

Let us pray for Pope Francis that he may govern the Church wisely. May the Mother of God guide him particularly in his conversation with the world and the media. Let us remember the gates of hell will not prevail. Look at his homilies and audiences. He in his own words says stay faithful to the Catechism the teachings of the Church. Let not incidentals  ( interviews etc) shake our faith or our love for the tradition and treasures of the Church

October month of the Rosary.

During October let us renew our devotion to Our Lady's Rosary. Let us each day say at least one decade . There are many intentions to pray for and so let us take heed of the words from the Mother of God at Fatima and pray the Rosary daily. Our Holy Father has entrusted the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. May we in the MI consecrate ourselves each day in the service of Our Lady to advance the Kingdom of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in our world.
Pray for our Holy Father that he may be truly guided by the Holy Spirit.
We also pray for the new MI International council in Rome. Many thanks to Fr Paschal Mary Corby OFM Conv who represented Australia at the assembly.
October is also the month for the special prayer to St Joseph," to You O' Blessed St Joseph  .........."
May the chaste spouse of the Immaculate Virgin and Guardian of the Child Jesus watch over the Church in these troubled times.
Look for a great film ," Mary of Nazareth". Please God it will soon come to Australia.
God love you- ---br Louis Mary

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Novena to St Anthony of Padua

The novena begins on June 4  and ends on June 12. St Anthony's feast day is June 13. St Anthony, pray for us!

O wonderful St. Anthony, glorious on account of the fame of your miracles, and through the condescension of Jesus in coming in the form of a little child to rest in your arms, obtain for me of His bounty the grace which I ardently desire from the depths of my heart . (State your intention)
You who were so compassionate toward miserable sinners, regard not the unworthiness of those who pray to you, but the glory of God that it may once again be magnified by the granting of the particular request  (State your intention)  which I now ask for with persevering earnestness. Amen
Pray one Our Father,
one Hail Mary, and
Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!


O holy St. Anthony, gentlest of saints, your love for God and charity for his creatures made you worthy while on earth to possess miraculous powers. Miracles waited your word, which you were ever ready to speak for those in trouble or anxiety. Encouraged by this thought, I implore you to obtain for me the favor I seek in this novena (State your intention). The answer to my prayer may require a miracle; even so, you are the saint of miracles. O gentle and loving Saint Anthony, whose heart was ever full of human sympathy, whisper my petition into the ears of the Infant Jesus, who loved to be folded in your arms, and thee gratitude of my heart will always be yours.
One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!


O miracle-working St. Anthony, remember that it never has been heard that you left without help or relief anyone who in his need had recourse to you. Animated now with the most lively confidence, even with full conviction of not being refused, I fly for refuge to thee, O most favored friend of the Infant Jesus. O eloquent preacher of the divine mercy, despise not my supplications but, bringing them before the throne of God, strengthen them by your intercession and obtain for me the favor I seek in this novena (State your intention) .
One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!


O purest St. Anthony, who through your angelic virtue was made worthy to be caressed by the Divine Child Jesus, to hold him in your arms and press him to your heart. I entreat you to cast a benevolent glance upon me. O glorious St. Anthony, born under the protection of Mary Immaculate, on the Feast of her Assumption into Heaven, and consecrated to her and now so powerful an intercessor in Heaven, I beseech you to obtain for me the favor I ask in this novena (State your intention). O great wonder-worker, intercede for me that God may grant my request.
One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!


I salute and honor you, O powerful helper, St. Anthony. The Christian world confidently turns to you and experiences your tender compassion and powerful assistance in so many necessities and sufferings that I am encouraged in my need to seek you help in obtaining a favorable answer to my request for the favor I seek in this novena (State your intention). O holy St. Anthony, I beseech you, obtain for me the grace that I desire.
One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!


I salute you, St. Anthony, lily of purity, ornament and glory of Christianity. I salute you, great Saint, cherub of wisdom and seraph of divine love. I rejoice at the favors our Lord has so liberally bestowed upon you. In humility and confidence I entreat you to help me, for I know that God has given you charity and pity, as well as power. I ask you by the love you did feel toward the Infant Jesus as you held him in your arms to tell Him now of the favor I seek through your intercession in this novena (State your intention).
One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!


O glorious St. Anthony, chosen by God to preach his Word, you received from Him the gift of tongues and the power of working the most extraordinary miracles. O good St. Anthony, pray that I may fulfill the will of God in all things so that I may love Him, with you, for all eternity. O kind St. Anthony, I beseech you, obtain for me the grace that I desire, the favor I seek in this novena (State your intention).
One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!


O renowned champion of the faith of Christ, most holy St. Anthony, glorious for your many miracles, obtain for me from the bounty of my Lord and God the grace which I ardently seek in this novena (State your intention) . O holy St. Anthony, ever attentive to those who invoke you, grant me that aid of your powerful intercession.
One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!


O holy St. Anthony, you have shown yourself so powerful in your intercession, so tender and so compassionate towards those who honor you and invoke you in suffering and distress. I beseech you most humbly and earnestly to take me under your protection in my present necessities and to obtain for me the favor I desire (State your intention). Recommend my request to the merciful Queen of Heaven, that she may plead my cause with you before the throne of her Divine Son.
One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!


Saint Anthony, servant of Mary, glory of the Church, pray for our Holy Father, our bishops, our priests, our Religious Orders, that, through their pious zeal and apostolic labors, all may be united in faith and give greater glory to God. St. Anthony, helper of all who invoke you, pray for me and intercede for me before the throne of Almighty God that I be granted the favor I so earnestly see in this novena (State your intention).
One Our Father, one Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father, in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!
May the divine assistance remain always with us.
May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.
O God, may the votive commemoration of blessed Anthony, your confessor, be a source of joy to your Church, that she may always be fortified with spiritual assistance, and deserve to enjoy eternal rewards. Through Christ our Lord.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Were not our hearts burning within us?

Father Patrick’s homily for Wednesday, April 03, 2013 within the Octave of Easter on the Gospel reading from Luke 24: 13-35.

“Were not our hearts burning within us?” 

Drugs, alcohol, sex, money. 
These things do not make our hearts burn within us.
Although they promise otherwise, they will leave our hearts empty and unsatisfied in the end.

The words of Jesus and the breaking of the Bread are the only things that truly make our hearts burn, that fulfill and satisfy.

Nothing else satisfies, nothing else makes our hearts burn within us with a fire of love that not even death can quench or overcome, for Jesus the Lord is Risen!

Peace to you,
Father Patrick Greenough, OFM Conv
Minister Provincial of St. Bonaventure Province – USA & Australia
Natl. Director of the MI for the USA & Canada 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Pray for Our Holy Father!

"Dear Brothers and Sisters, I thank the Lord that I can celebrate this Holy Mass for the inauguration of my Petrine ministry on the solemnity of Saint Joseph, the spouse of the Virgin Mary and the patron of the universal Church. It is a significant coincidence, and it is also the name-day of my venerable predecessor: we are close to him with our prayers, full of affection and gratitude."

Let us pray for Our Holy Father and for the Church.

Prayer for the Pope by Pope Leo XIII:

O Lord, we are the millions of believers, humbly kneeling at Thy feet and begging Thee to preserve, defend and save the Sovereign Pontiff for many years. He is the Father of the great fellowship of souls and our Father as well. On this day, as on every other day, he is praying for us also, and is offering unto Thee with holy fervor the sacred Victim of love and peace.

Wherefore, O Lord, turn Thyself toward us with eyes of pity; for we are now, as it were, forgetful of ourselves, and are praying above all for him. Do Thou unite our prayers with his and receive them into the bosom of Thine infinite mercy, as a sweet savor of active and fruitful charity, whereby the children are united in the Church to their Father. All that he asks of Thee this day, we too ask it of Thee in unison with him.

Whether he weeps or rejoices, whether he hopes or offers himself as a victim of charity for his people, we desire to be united with him; nay more, we desire that the cry of our hearts should be made one with his. Of Thy great mercy grant, O Lord, that not one of us may be far from his mind and his heart in the hour that he prays and offers unto Thee the Sacrifice of Thy blessed Son. At the moment when our venerable High Priest, holding in His hands the very Body of Jesus Christ, shall say to the people over the Chalice of benediction these words: "The peace of the Lord be with you always," grant, O Lord, that Thy sweet peace may come down upon our hearts and upon all the nations with new and manifest power. Amen.

Blessed Teresa of Kolkata, Mother Teresa, pray for us!

St Francis, pray for us!

St Joseph, pray for us!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

"Believing in charity calls forth charity"


"Believing in charity calls forth charity"
“We have come to know and to believe in the love God has for us" 
 (1 Jn 4:16)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
The celebration of Lent, in the context of the Year of Faith, offers us a valuable opportunity to meditate on the relationship between faith and charity: between believing in God – the God of Jesus Christ – and love, which is the fruit of the Holy Spirit and which guides us on the path of devotion to God and others.

1. Faith as a response to the love of God
In my first Encyclical, I offered some thoughts on the close relationship between the theological virtues of faith and charity. Setting out from Saint John’s fundamental assertion: “We have come to know and to believe in the love God has for us” (1 Jn 4:16), I observed that “being Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction … Since God has first loved us (cf. 1 Jn 4:10), love is now no longer a mere ‘command’; it is the response to the gift of love with which God draws near to us” (Deus Caritas Est, 1). Faith is this personal adherence – which involves all our faculties – to the revelation of God’s gratuitous and “passionate” love for us, fully revealed in Jesus Christ. The encounter with God who is Love engages not only the heart but also the intellect: “Acknowledgement of the living God is one path towards love, and the ‘yes’ of our will to his will unites our intellect, will and sentiments in the all-embracing act of love. But this process is always open-ended; love is never ‘finished’ and complete” (ibid., 17). Hence, for all Christians, and especially for “charity workers”, there is a need for faith, for “that encounter with God in Christ which awakens their love and opens their spirits to others. As a result, love of neighbour will no longer be for them a commandment imposed, so to speak, from without, but a consequence deriving from their faith, a faith which becomes active through love” (ibid., 31a). Christians are people who have been conquered by Christ’s love and accordingly, under the influence of that love – “Caritas Christi urget nos” (2 Cor 5:14) – they are profoundly open to loving their neighbour in concrete ways (cf. ibid., 33). This attitude arises primarily from the consciousness of being loved, forgiven, and even served by the Lord, who bends down to wash the feet of the Apostles and offers himself on the Cross to draw humanity into God’s love.
“Faith tells us that God has given his Son for our sakes and gives us the victorious certainty that it is really true: God is love! … Faith, which sees the love of God revealed in the pierced heart of Jesus on the Cross, gives rise to love. Love is the light – and in the end, the only light – that can always illuminate a world grown dim and give us the courage needed to keep living and working” (ibid., 39). All this helps us to understand that the principal distinguishing mark of Christians is precisely “love grounded in and shaped by faith” (ibid., 7).

2. Charity as life in faith
The entire Christian life is a response to God’s love. The first response is precisely faith as the acceptance, filled with wonder and gratitude, of the unprecedented divine initiative that precedes us and summons us. And the “yes” of faith marks the beginning of a radiant story of friendship with the Lord, which fills and gives full meaning to our whole life. But it is not enough for God that we simply accept his gratuitous love. Not only does he love us, but he wants to draw us to himself, to transform us in such a profound way as to bring us to say with Saint Paul: “it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me” (cf. Gal 2:20).
When we make room for the love of God, then we become like him, sharing in his own charity. If we open ourselves to his love, we allow him to live in us and to bring us to love with him, in him and like him; only then does our faith become truly “active through love” (Gal 5:6); only then does he abide in us (cf. 1 Jn4:12).
Faith is knowing the truth and adhering to it (cf. 1 Tim 2:4); charity is “walking” in the truth (cf. Eph 4:15). Through faith we enter into friendship with the Lord, through charity this friendship is lived and cultivated (cf. Jn 15:14ff). Faith causes us to embrace the commandment of our Lord and Master; charity gives us the happiness of putting it into practice (cf. Jn 13:13-17). In faith we are begotten as children of God (cf. Jn 1:12ff); charity causes us to persevere concretely in our divine sonship, bearing the fruit of the Holy Spirit (cf. Gal5:22). Faith enables us to recognize the gifts that the good and generous God has entrusted to us; charity makes them fruitful (cf. Mt 25:14-30).

3. The indissoluble interrelation of faith and charity
In light of the above, it is clear that we can never separate, let alone oppose, faith and charity. These two theological virtues are intimately linked, and it is misleading to posit a contrast or “dialectic” between them. On the one hand, it would be too one-sided to place a strong emphasis on the priority and decisiveness of faith and to undervalue and almost despise concrete works of charity, reducing them to a vague humanitarianism. On the other hand, though, it is equally unhelpful to overstate the primacy of charity and the activity it generates, as if works could take the place of faith. For a healthy spiritual life, it is necessary to avoid both fideism and moral activism.
The Christian life consists in continuously scaling the mountain to meet God and then coming back down, bearing the love and strength drawn from him, so as to serve our brothers and sisters with God’s own love. In sacred Scripture, we see how the zeal of the Apostles to proclaim the Gospel and awaken people’s faith is closely related to their charitable concern to be of service to the poor (cf. Acts 6:1-4). In the Church, contemplation and action, symbolized in some way by the Gospel figures of Mary and Martha, have to coexist and complement each other (cf. Lk 10:38-42). The relationship with God must always be the priority, and any true sharing of goods, in the spirit of the Gospel, must be rooted in faith (cf. General Audience, 25 April 2012). Sometimes we tend, in fact, to reduce the term “charity” to solidarity or simply humanitarian aid. It is important, however, to remember that the greatest work of charity is evangelization, which is the “ministry of the word”. There is no action more beneficial – and therefore more charitable – towards one’s neighbour than to break the bread of the word of God, to share with him the Good News of the Gospel, to introduce him to a relationship with God: evangelization is the highest and the most integral promotion of the human person. As the Servant of God Pope Paul VI wrote in the Encyclical Populorum Progressio, the proclamation of Christ is the first and principal contributor to development (cf. n. 16). It is the primordial truth of the love of God for us, lived and proclaimed, that opens our lives to receive this love and makes possible the integral development of humanity and of every man (cf. Caritas in Veritate, 8).
Essentially, everything proceeds from Love and tends towards Love. God’s gratuitous love is made known to us through the proclamation of the Gospel. If we welcome it with faith, we receive the first and indispensable contact with the Divine, capable of making us “fall in love with Love”, and then we dwell within this Love, we grow in it and we joyfully communicate it to others.
Concerning the relationship between faith and works of charity, there is a passage in the Letter to the Ephesians which provides perhaps the best account of the link between the two: “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God; not because of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (2:8-10). It can be seen here that the entire redemptive initiative comes from God, from his grace, from his forgiveness received in faith; but this initiative, far from limiting our freedom and our responsibility, is actually what makes them authentic and directs them towards works of charity. These are not primarily the result of human effort, in which to take pride, but they are born of faith and they flow from the grace that God gives in abundance. Faith without works is like a tree without fruit: the two virtues imply one another. Lent invites us, through the traditional practices of the Christian life, to nourish our faith by careful and extended listening to the word of God and by receiving the sacraments, and at the same time to grow in charity and in love for God and neighbour, not least through the specific practices of fasting, penance and almsgiving.

4. Priority of faith, primacy of charity
Like any gift of God, faith and charity have their origin in the action of one and the same Holy Spirit (cf. 1 Cor 13), the Spirit within us that cries out “Abba, Father” (Gal 4:6), and makes us say: “Jesus is Lord!” (1 Cor 12:3) and “Maranatha!” (1 Cor 16:22; Rev 22:20).
Faith, as gift and response, causes us to know the truth of Christ as Love incarnate and crucified, as full and perfect obedience to the Father’s will and infinite divine mercy towards neighbour; faith implants in hearts and minds the firm conviction that only this Love is able to conquer evil and death. Faith invites us to look towards the future with the virtue of hope, in the confident expectation that the victory of Christ’s love will come to its fullness. For its part, charity ushers us into the love of God manifested in Christ and joins us in a personal and existential way to the total and unconditional self-giving of Jesus to the Father and to his brothers and sisters. By filling our hearts with his love, the Holy Spirit makes us sharers in Jesus’ filial devotion to God and fraternal devotion to every man (cf. Rom 5:5).
The relationship between these two virtues resembles that between the two fundamental sacraments of the Church: Baptism and Eucharist. Baptism (sacramentum fidei) precedes the Eucharist (sacramentum caritatis), but is ordered to it, the Eucharist being the fullness of the Christian journey. In a similar way, faith precedes charity, but faith is genuine only if crowned by charity. Everything begins from the humble acceptance of faith (“knowing that one is loved by God”), but has to arrive at the truth of charity (“knowing how to love God and neighbour”), which remains for ever, as the fulfilment of all the virtues (cf. 1 Cor 13:13).
Dear brothers and sisters, in this season of Lent, as we prepare to celebrate the event of the Cross and Resurrection – in which the love of God redeemed the world and shone its light upon history – I express my wish that all of you may spend this precious time rekindling your faith in Jesus Christ, so as to enter with him into the dynamic of love for the Father and for every brother and sister that we encounter in our lives. For this intention, I raise my prayer to God, and I invoke the Lord’s blessing upon each individual and upon every community!

The Presentation of Our Lord

Today, 40 days after the celebration of the birth of the Lord we gather to celebrate the Presentation of the Lord. We commemorate the ritual purification of Mary as prescribed in the Law of Moses after the birth of Jesus. We celebrate and remember the fact that 40 days after the birth of a Jewish boy, it was the custom to take him to the temple in Jerusalem to be presented to God by his thankful parents and so Mary the Mother of Jesus and Joseph the foster father of the Lord take him to the temple in accordance with the Law. In pre-Christian times, this day was known as the feast of lights and it celebrated the fact that the days were once again growing longer while the night were growing shorter. Light was triumphing over darkness.

Now in addition to the 40 days purification required by the Mosiac Law, it doesn’t take too much savvy to figure out that Christians of the 5th and 6th centuries sort of “baptized” the pagan feast of the return of light with the coming of Jesus, who is the Lord of life. (Jhn 1: 1-5) Thus, the feast of the Presentation of the Lord became the day on which candles, which were the primary source of light in those days were blessed. They reminded the early Christians that Christ was the light of the world. (Jhn 1: 9)

Before Jesus came the world lay in darkness but with the birth of the Lord, the light of salvation dawned upon the world. Christ is the light of the world and therefore today we bless candles that remind us the light of Christ. Candles also remind us that as Christians we must bring the light of Christ to the darkness of our little corner of the world and as we bring the light of Christ to all we meet, we too will be used up in the service of the Lord as the wax of the candle is used up throwing off its light.

Today is also a special day on the secular calendar. It is Groundhog Day and of course if the groundhog sees his shadow today, we’re in for a 6 more week of winter weather. This comes from an old German proverb that goes as follows - "The badger peeps out of his hole on Candelmas day, and, if he find snow, walks abroad; but if he sees the sun shining he draws back into his hole.” So if the famous American groundhog Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow, we are in for more winter weather! Now right before I came down to celebrate Mass, I looked up on the computer what the furry little monster predicted and it seems that he didn’t see his shadow so that means an early end to winter. This year, I absolutely agree with him! Sorry Brother Charles … (he loves snowy winters)!

So Groundhog Day is all about seeing shadows while Candlemas day is all about seeing light. Maybe we can put the two together and come up with a bit of a lesson. All of us have been filled with the light of Christ. At our holy baptism we were given a candle that was burning, taking its light from the Easter Candle our symbol of the light of Christ. And we are told that we are to keep that light burning brightly until the day when we go out to meet the Lord. Now, that is our task, but as we know, sometimes we compromise the light of Christ. We sin. Sin brings bits of darkness, shadows into our lives and dims the light of Christ given to us.

All of us, if the truth be told, are a mixture of light and shadows. We desire to follow Christ our light, but our sin cast shadows on that light. On this Candlemas day, as we come to Jesus the light of the world, perhaps we should ask him to give us the wisdom, the strength, the courage to always live in his light and to share his light that he has given to us with all those we meet.

May we pray:
Lord, help us keep your love, your light burning brightly in our lives. Give us the wisdom and the strength to avoid the shadows of sin in our lives. Help us carry your light to all we meet until that day when we go out to meet you, the Lamb of God who is the light of the city of God, the heavenly city of Jerusalem, the Kingdom of God.

God Bless,
Father Stephen McKinley, OFM Conv
Rector of the National Shrine of St. Maximilian Kolbe
Spiritual Advisor to the MI for the USA & Canada

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


“Our entire perfection consists in being conformed, united and consecrated to Jesus Christ. Hence the most perfect of all devotions is undoubtedly that which conforms, unites and consecrates us most perfectly to Jesus Christ.

Now, since Mary is of all creatures the one most conformed to Jesus Christ, it follows that among all devotions that which most consecrates and conforms a soul to our Lord is devotion to Mary, his Holy Mother, and that the more a soul is consecrated to her the more will it be consecrated to Jesus Christ."

Pope John Paul II's Apostolic Letter Rosarium Virginis Mariae