To Jesus through Mary! Happy feast of St. Januarius! Today’s feast is one that continues to amaze Catholics all over the world. The miracle of St. Januarius’ blood reminds us that sometimes God uses the unexpected and the awe-inspiring to keep our eyes on Him and not the things of this world.
That is actually a good thing to remember these days. There is a lot of talk about the Second Coming and apocalyptic happenings that could be on the horizon, and maybe it is true. Only God knows. However, the prescription for times such as those is really no different than less exciting times. We are called to live our lives ALWAYS with deep prayer, passionate evangelism, sacrificial good works and closeness to the Sacraments.
Today, this is going to be our focus: keeping our eyes trained on Christ! As St. Therese of Lisieux said, “The world’s thy ship, not thy home.” So without further ado, let’s get into this!
This past March, when COVID-19 cases were starting to skyrocket, we both watched the number of fatalities reported every day and we panicked. Like many of you, we were terrified. There was so much that we didn’t know and fear reigned in our hearts. With the passing of time and a greater understanding of the virus, however, we began to really evaluate our response to the pandemic and the peace-stealing anxiety that it brought us. Perhaps you can relate? We are learning that death is not the worst thing that could happen to us. Hell is. And when it comes right down to it, we need to be prepared for death at any time. We found The Secret to Dying Well is Living Well, and it put everything into perspective for us.
The How-To Guide to Living Well
Okay, so if we are to prepare for a good death by living a good life, what should we do? If you like lists, then this is the article for you! Fr. Wade Menezes of the Fathers of Mercy outlines 10 Practical Steps to a Sanctified Life. The advice is short and to the point and is something that every single person can use to evaluate their daily life. We read it and were reminded of things we definitely need to get on board with! Check it out!
Are you going through a hard time in your life? A time of suffering? If so, perhaps you are feeling alone and really just wish that someone understood you or could at least sit with you in your pain. There is such a person. Our Blessed Mother is no stranger to the hard things in life and she is known for reaching her motherly hand out to those who suffer. Check out How the Virgin Mary Can Help You Endure Any Suffering if you need some support—she is there for you!
If you are familiar with the popular movie The Goonies from the 80s, you might remember some of the lead actors in the film. One of them was Robert Davi. As an actor and singer, he has entertained millions over the years. But what you might not know is that he was healed as a young man through the intercession of St. Padre Pio! Check out the story here and see what he’s doing to help The Pio Foundation.
If you’re in the mood to have your ears tickled and your heart lifted, check out this short but BEAUTIFUL rendition of the Salve Regina by Canto Católico. Four hundred and fifty voices singing to Our Lady are sure to put a smile on your face!
Saint Matthew’s feast is coming up on Monday. Matthew, also known as Levi, was a Jew who collected taxes from his countrymen which ultimately enriched their Roman conquerors. As you might expect, he was not a member of polite society! Astonishingly, he abandoned his post at Jesus’ invitation to follow him. He wrote his Gospel for a Jewish audience, quoting the Old Testament explicitly or implicitly some 200 times, showing that Jesus is a “new Moses.”
St. Pio of Pietrelcina’s feast day is this coming Wednesday, September 23. Many of us know about the amazing and miraculous things that God did in his life, but, as Fr. Mike Schmitz points out, his real holiness was in something else altogether. Check out this short video and some of the rare footage of Padre Pio here!
The readings for Mass this Sunday remind us that the first shall be last and the last shall be first. We found a great reflection from Catholic Exchange about this very topic! Check it out here. And to read Dr. Scott Hahn’s reflection on the readings, head over to the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology.
Here are some links to celebrate some important feast days this week.
—Saint Matthew, September 21
—Saint Pio of Pietrelcina , September 23
Marian Center Update
It’s easy to practice social distancing while attending our exhibit on Marian Apparitions! And you can shop at the Marian Center Gift Shop.
We are now on our Fall schedule. Come visit us from Tuesday-Saturday, 10 to 3. Hope to see you soon!
To Christ Through Mary,
Katie Moe and Lori Mercer
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