“The presentation of Jesus in the temple shows him to be the firstborn Son who belongs to the Lord. With Simeon and Anna, all Israel awaits its encounter with the Savior … Jesus is recognized as the long-expected Messiah, the ‘light to the nations’ and the ‘glory of Israel,’ but also ‘a sign that is spoken against.’ The sword of sorrow predicted for Mary announces Christ’s perfect and unique oblation on the cross that will impart the salvation God had ‘prepared in the presence of all peoples’” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 529).
It’s not too late to take a tip on Christmas gift-giving from two Doctors of the Church: St. Alphonsus Liguori and St. Teresa of Avila. Help a soul in purgatory reach heaven on December 25. And — marking the eight days of the Octave of Christmas — keep giving, keep helping, through January 1.
“Beginning the Church’s liturgical year, Advent (from, ‘ad-venire’ in Latin or ‘to come to’) is the season encompassing the four Sundays (and weekdays) leading up to the celebration of Christmas” (The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website).
While the country commemorates those who served on Veterans Day, the Church invites us during the month of all souls to pray for and honor our war dead.
After listening to Johnnette Benkovic Williams speak about the power of testimonies on Women of Grace Live, one listener shared this personal testimony with us. Her childhood “treasure hunt” of collecting little pieces of smooth glass and keeping them in a jar foreshadowed something much deeper- where she would find her true treasure in the Catholic faith. She also wanted to thank Johnnette for being a spiritual mentor to her through her 30+ years of listening to the Women of Grace radio program.
The comprehensive Omnibus entitled St. Francis of Assisi: Writings and Early Biographies, published in 1973, is introduced with a statement which rings true still today, close to fifty years later: “There is something paradoxical about the fact that the Little Poor Man of Assisi, who sought only obscurity, should have become so widely known and universally loved as he is today.”
Is a Mass offered for one who is still living more powerful than a Mass celebrated for that person after he or she has died? I often wondered about that, so I wrote to Father Edward McNamara, a noted Professor of Liturgy, at the Regina Apostolorum University in Rome. This is how he responded to my inquiry.
It’s fairly common knowledge that Saint Anthony of Padua (1195 – 1231 A.D.) has a reputation as finder of lost articles. Car keys, eyeglasses, and any number of items we consider indispensable, seeming to have disappeared, are catalysts for prayer to the gentle Franciscan and popular saint whose feast we celebrate on June 13th.
From time to time, the Church decides on a new entry into the Roman Calendar to be celebrated by the faithful. This was the case in recent times with the Memorial of Mary, Mother of the Church, celebrated this year on June 6th.
“During those days Mary set out and traveled to the hill country in haste to a town of Judah, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth” (Lk 1:39).