- Saturday, 26 September 2009 06:00
How beautiful in splendor is the chaste generation! Immortal is its memory because it is acknowledged both by God and by men.
Heavenly Father, You have given us Saint Elzéar and Blessed Delphina as shining examples of virtue in holy wedded life. As we venerate their pious achievements on earth, so may we arrive at blessed fellowship with them in heaven.
Saint Elzéar and Blessed Delphina are one of the very few married couples recognized by the Church for sainted holiness; they certainly are the only husband and wife team raised to the altar who were members of the Third Order Franciscans (today we say they are Secular Franciscans). As Third Order Franciscans, Saint Elzéar and Blessed Delphina observed a life of penance and obligation to pray the Divine Office. Their married life was characterized as resolutely chaste as they both vowed perpetual virginity, proving that marriage is more than sexual expression.
Dedicated to the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy, the hagiographies indicate that each night 12 poor people dined with them. Saint Elzéar was religiously devoted and cared for the poor; known to be modest and generous; conforming himself to Christ he bore insults cheerfully. It was reported that he cured several people from leprosy. Delphina, together with her husband, cared for the poor and the sick; after Elzéar’s death she disposed of her wealth and is remembered for faithfully following Christ and thus living a moral life. One such example of living a morally upright life is her influence in converting the king of Sicily’s court to Christ.
Elzéar was canonized in 1369 by his godchild Pope Urban V (of whom he said would be the supreme pontiff) and Delphina was beatified in 1694 by Pope Innocent XII.
- Wednesday, 23 September 2009 09:45
“…the legacy he left is holiness”
God our Father, in Saint Pio of Pietrelcina You gave a light to Your faithful people. You made him a pastor of the Church to feed Your sheep with his word and to teach them by his example. Help us by his prayers to keep the faith he taught and follow the way of life he showed us.
The Vatican biography may be read here.
See more on Saint Pio here.
When thinking about Padre Pio’s influence on the spiritual life it can be noted that he advocated 3 things:
1. Pray. And don’t be overcome.
2. Conform yourself to Christ crucified.
3. Attend to the sacraments, especially the sacrament of Confession.
- Wednesday, 23 September 2009 06:00
This day a brilliant star rises, for today Saint Clare, the poor handmaid of the Lord, is glorified in heaven.
Lord, we recall the memory of Saint Clare the virgin. Through her merits, and following her example, may we be strengthened in our hope and charity as we await the glorious resurrection and the enjoyment of eternal communion with you.
Let me take the opportunity to promote the Capuchin Poor Clare vocation…something good happening here
- Friday, 18 September 2009 06:00
The love of God is honorable wisdom and they to whom she shows herself love her by the sight and the knowledge of her great works.
God, our Father, your wisdom disposed that your only-begotten Son, when lifted above the earth, should draw all things to himself. May the merits and example of Saint Joseph help us to rise above earthly desires and become perfectly conformable to your Son.
*Saint Joseph of Cupertino is a firm patron of students, particularly seminary students. So, please for me and fellow seminarians here at Saint Joseph’s Seminary (though this Joseph is the husband of Mary). He’s also the patron saint for astronauts and pilots & stewards.
- Thursday, 17 September 2009 14:33
The liturgical calendar can vary from country to country and the various religious orders may have their calendar of saints, e.g., the Benedictine, Carmelite, Dominican, Franciscan, Jesuit, etc. On the universal Roman calendar today is the optional memorial of Saint Robert Bellarmine, a Jesuit, bishop, cardinal and Doctor of the Church (see the prayer in the entry below). On the Franciscan sanctoral calendar, today is this the feast of Saint Francis’ stigmata. And so I offer these Mass prayers for prayer.
May I never boast of anything but the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ! Through it the world has been crucified to me and I to the world. (Gal. 6:14)
Almighty God, you renewed the marks of the sufferings of your Son in the body of our holy Father Francis in order to inflame our hearts with the fire of your love. Through his prayers may we be conformable to the death of your Son and thus share also in his resurrection.
Lord, may the humble and devout prayer of Saint Francis sustain us. Through this offering may we always experience within us the saving benefit of the sufferings of your Son. (Prayer over the Gifts)
Almighty God, in many ways you displayed the wondrous mystery of the cross in our holy Father Francis. May we follow the example of his devotion and find strength in constant meditation on the same cross. (Prayer after Communion)