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Showing posts from March, 2011

Blessed Jane of Toulouse

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The saint of the day for March 31 is Blessed Jane of Toulouse.

Blessed Jane lived in the French town of Toulouse during the 13th century. A Carmelite monastery was founded in the same town in 1240 which exposed Jane to the Carmelite lifestyle and spirituality.

In 1265 when St. Simon Stock, a 13th century reformer of the Carmelites, was passing through Toulouse, Jane met him and requested to be affiliated with the Carmelites. Simon agreed and Jane became the first Third Order Carmelite.

Jane vowed herself to perpetual chastity and applied herself completely to the Carmelite Rule. In addition to many daily holy practices and penances, she reached out to the community and worked to help the sick and poor. One of Jane's primary missions was encouraging the boys of the town to help her serve the poor and help them discern whether or not they were called to be Carmelites.

Blessed Jane is considered to be a founder of the Carmelite tertiary order and is considered to be its first member…

Planned Parenthood cheats taxpayers with imaginary mammograms

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WASHINGTON, D.C., March 30--A series of new undercover phone calls reveals that contrary to the claims of Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards and other supporters of the nation's largest abortion chain, the organization does not provide mammograms for women.

In the tapes, a Live Action actor calls 30 Planned Parenthood clinics in 27 different states, inquiring about mammograms at Planned Parenthood. Every Planned Parenthood, without exception, tells her she will have to go elsewhere for a mammogram, and many clinics admit that no Planned Parenthood clinics provide this breast cancer screening procedure. "We don’t provide those services whatsoever,” admits a staffer at Planned Parenthood of Arizona. Planned Parenthood’s Comprehensive Health Center clinic in Overland Park, KS explains to the caller, “We actually don’t have a, um, mammogram machine, at our clinics.”

Opponents of defunding Planned Parenthood have argued in Congress and elsewhere that the organization…

New Film on Saint André Bessette: God's Doorkeeper

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On January 6, 1937, the death of a humble doorkeeper for a boys' college drew over a million people to Montreal for his funeral. For 40 years, Brother André Bessette of the Congregation of Holy Cross welcomed people at the door and became known as a miraculous healer. God's Doorkeeper looks at the heart and legacy of Brother André -as a man of prayer, of hospitality, and of compassion; a man who draws people in to experience a God who is love. On October 17, 2010, Brother André became the first male Canadian-born saint and the first saint for the Congregation of Holy Cross. He is living proof that "it is with the smallest brushes that the divine artist paints the most beautiful pictures."

The film features interviews from Montreal, Rome, and the United States-with people who knew him and others who continue Brother André's work today. It also includes footage of the Beatification and Canonization ceremonies in Rome and the celebrations in Canada, with footage of…

St. John Climacus: My Favorite Quotes

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It is sheer lunacy to imagine that one has deserved the gifts of God. You may be proud only of the achievements you had before the time of your birth. But anything after that, indeed the birth itself, is a gift from God. You may claim only those virtues in you that are there independently of your mind, for your mind was bestowed on you by God. And you may claim only those victories you achieved independently of the body, for the body too is not yours but a work of God.

A chaste man is someone who has driven out bodily love by means of divine love, who has used heavenly fire to quench the fires of the flesh.

A person is at the beginning of a prayer when he succeeds in removing distractions which at the beginning beset him. He is at the middle of the prayer when the mind concentrates only on what he is meditating and contemplating. He reaches the end when, with the Lord, the prayer enraptures him.

Humility has it signs: ...poverty, withdrawal from the world, the concealment of one's…

St. John Climacus

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The saint of the day for March 30 is St. John Climacus.

St. John Climacus was born around the year 525 in Palestine. As a youth, he excelled in his studies and was highly regarded by his peers for his knowledge. At the age of 16, John decided to leave the world and retired to a hermitage near the base of Mount Sinai. For the next four years, John spent his time in prayer, fasting, meditation and discernment while preparing to take solemn vows to the religious life. Through the direction of Martyrius, John curbed his vices and worked to perfect his virtues.

After professing his solemn vows, John began to spend more of his time studying scriptures and the early fathers of the Church. He became very knowledgeable in these subjects but his humility caused him to hide his talents and not presume to share them with others. Near the end of his life, he was encouraged to share his knowledge with others and wrote the "Climax" also known as "The Ladder of Paradise." This wor…

Gross: Biotech company using cell lines from aborted babies in food enhancement testing

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 We need to boycott Pepsico, Kraft Foods, Campbell Soup Solae and Nestlé products.

LifeSiteNews has the story:

Pepsico, Kraft Foods, and Nestlé are among the corporations partnered with a biotech company found using aborted fetal cell lines to test food flavor enhancers, according to a pro-life watchdog group.

The internationally recognized biotech company, Senomyx, boasts innovation and success in “flavour programs” designed to reduce MSG, sugar and salt in food and beverage products. Senomyx notes their collaborators provide them research and development funding plus royalties on sales of products using their flavor ingredients.

Pro-life watchdog group, Children of God for Life (CGL), has called upon the public to target the major corporations in a boycott, unless the company ceases to use aborted fetal cell lines in their product testing.

“Using isolated human taste receptors,” the Senomyx website claims, “we created proprietary taste receptor-based assay systems that provide a bi…

Buy Your Pro-life Bread Here

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St. Francis de Sales on the Season of Lent

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“Lent is the autumn of the spiritual life during which we gather fruit to keep us going for the rest of the year. Enrich yourselves with these treasures, which nobody can take away from you and which cannot be destroyed. I am accustomed to say that we will not spend Lent well unless we are determined to make the most of it. Let us, therefore, spend this Lent as if it were our last, and we will make it well. Listen to the sermons, because holy words are pearls; they are ships of infinite mercy – the true ocean of the East.”

~ St. Francis de Sales

St. Joseph of Arimathea

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The saint of the day for March 29 is St. Joseph of Arimathea.

We learn about Joseph of Arimathea in Sacred Scripture. Arimathea was his place of birth, which was most likely the same city also known as Ramatha, birthplace of the prophet Samuel.

All the authentic information that we have about Joseph is from Sacred Scripture in the New Testament. These are some of the facts about Joseph: He was a member of the Sandhedrin, a council of 71 members that had supreme executive, legislative, and judicial power over the Jewish faith. He apparently was a wealthy man and also a good and just man, according to Luke’s gospel (Luke 23:50). He was a disciple of Jesus, but this was concealed for fear of the Jews or members of the Sandhedrin who were against Jesus. It is unlikely that Joseph attended the meeting of the council that sentenced Jesus to death, as he did not agree with the others in their condemnation of Him.

After the crucifixion, Joseph was bolder in his support of Jesus. This is evin…

Lenten Reflection: The Season of Mercy

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Abby Johnson Exposes Planned Parenthood

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See American Papist's post Video: CatholicVote helps Abby Johnson expose Planned Parenthood for more information about this video.

St. Josemaría Escrivá on Lenten Conversion

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 Lent should suggest to us these basic questions: Am I advancing in my faithfulness to Christ, in my desire for holiness, in a generous apostolate in my daily life, in my ordinary work among my colleagues?

Each one of us, silently, should answer these questions, and he will see that he needs to change again if Christ is to live in him, if Jesus' image is to be reflected clearly in his behaviour. "If any man has a mind to come my way, let him renounce self, and take up his cross daily and follow me." Christ is saying this again, to us, whispering it in our ears: the cross each day. As St Jerome puts it: "Not only in time of persecution or when we have the chance of martyrdom, but in all circumstances, in everything we do and think, in everything we say, let us deny what we used to be and let us confess what we now are, reborn as we have been in Christ."

It's an echo of St Paul's words: "Once you were all darkness. Now, in the Lord, you are all dayligh…

St. Sixtus III, Pope

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The saint of the day for March 28 is St. Sixtus III, Pope.

St. Sixtus was born in Rome, Italy and ascended to the papacy in 432.

As the 44th Pope, he approved the results of the Council of Ephesus and actively protested against the heresies of Nestorianism and Pelagianism. He restored many Roman basilicas and corresponded with St. Augustine of Hippo.

He died August 18, 440 of natural causes.

For more information, see: SQPN,Catholic Encyclopedia, and Butler's Lives of the Saints.

Lenten Reflection: Boasting

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The Woman at the Well

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Prayer - For the Holy Spirit's Gifts of Healing

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The Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord

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The Annunciation by Philippe de Champaigne
The Solemnity of the Annunciation celebrates the coming of the Angel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary to announce to her the special mission God had chosen for her in being the mother of His only son.

The Annunciation heralds the beginning of our salvation. By Mary's obedient "Fiat" the earth has become heaven. "In Jesus, God has placed in the midst of barren, despairing mankind, a new beginning which is not a product of human history but a gift from above" (Pope Benedict XVI). All that our heart cries out for became flesh in Mary's wound. When we repeat the words of the angel by praying the Hail Mary, the word of God germinates in our soul. Christianity is this never-ending event of encounter with God made present in the maternity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

"What came about in bodily form in Mary, the fullness of the godhead shining through Christ in the Blessed Virgin, takes place in a similar way in every soul th…

Archbishop Sheen: A Personal Encounter with Christ

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"Neither theological knowledge nor social action alone is enough to keep us in love with Christ unless both are proceeded by a personal encounter with Him. Theological insights are gained not only from between two covers of a book, but from two bent knees before an altar. The Holy Hour becomes like an oxygen tank to revive the breath of the Holy Spirit in the midst of the foul and fetid atmosphere of the world."

~Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

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Kansas Senate Approves Historic Pro-Life Legislation

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Yesterday, the Kansas Senate approved two bills that will transform our state, long known as the late-term abortion capital of the country, into a model for Pro-Life legislation. The Senate approved Fetal Pain legislation and late-term abortion and parental consent legislation by votes of 24-15. The House of Representatives has already passed both bills by wide margins and will need to do so again. Governor Brownback has expressed strong support for the bills.


~ Via Kansas Catholic Conference.

For more information, read KS Senate passes protections for teens & 20-week unborn.

Redemptive Suffering: Power Against Evil

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St. Catherine of Sweden

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The saint of the day is St. Catherine of Sweden, the patron saint against abortion and miscarriages.

Catherine was born in 1331, the fourth of eight children, to Saint Bridget of Sweden and Ulf Gudmarsson.

At the age of seven, Catherine was sent to Risberg Convent to be educated. She desired to remain in the convent to pursue a religious vocation, but she was promised in marriage to the virtuous and pious German noble Eggard Lydersson von Kürnen, a lifelong invalid. At age 13, the two were united in the sacrament of matrimony. Although Catherine was very beautiful, she and Eggard took a mutual vow of perpetual chastity. They devoted themselves to a life of Christian perfection and active charity.

In 1348, Catherine's father died. With Eggard’s permission, Catherine joined her mother on various pilgrimages. During these pilgrimages, they visited the tombs of the martyrs the churches, and together practiced works of piety, caring for the poor and the sick. In 1349, Catherine travele…

Fr. Barron on God, the Tsunami, and the Problem of Evil

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Baby Joseph Maraachli Baptized, Family Pleased with Tracheotomy

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Praise God!  
Baby Joseph Maraachli, the infant who escaped Canada to come to the United States for a tracheotomy procedure his parents wanted so he could breath easier as he dies from a debilitating disease, has been baptized.

Moe Maraachli, Joseph’s father, commented on the developments: “It’s a miracle. My son now has freedom. I’m very happy. My wife and I will respect the second opinion from the hospital in St. Louis. We will accept it with all my heart because Joseph got his human right to get a chance to get a second opinion. When God wants to take his life He’ll take it and nobody can say ‘No’ to God.”

Continue reading.

St. Toribio de Mogrovejo

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The saint of the day is St. Toribio Alfonso de Mogrovejo.

Born in Spain and educated for the law, he became so brilliant a scholar that he was made professor of law at the University of Salamanca and eventually became chief judge of the Inquisition at Granada. He succeeded too well. But he was not sharp enough a lawyer to prevent a surprising sequence of events.

In 1580 the archbishopric of Lima, capital of Spain's colony in Peru, became vacant. He was the one person with the strength of character and holiness of spirit to heal those who had infected that area. He protested the assignment, but was overruled. He was ordained priest and bishop and sent to Peru, where he found colonialism at its worst. The Spanish conquerors were guilty of every sort of oppression of the native population. Abuses among the clergy were flagrant, and he devoted his energies (and suffering) to this area first.

He began the long and arduous visitation of an immense archdiocese, studying the language, st…

The Lenten Journey

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St. Lea

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The saint of the day is St. Lea .

St. Lea was a widow who lived in fourth century Rome and died around the year 384. After the death of her husband, she retired from the world to a monastery and eventually became superior of the community there. Much of the information available concerning the life of St. Lea, who has long been honored in the Roman Martyrology, comes from a letter from St. Jerome to Marcella which compares Lea's life to that of the Counsul Praetextaus. An excerpt of this letter, the twentieth epistle of St. Jerome is found below.

"Who will praise the blessed Lea as she deserves? She renounced painting her face and adorning her head with shining pearls. She exchanged her rich attire for sackcloth, and ceased to command others in order to obey all. She dwelt in a corner with a few bits of furniture; she spent her nights in prayer, and instructed her companions through her example rather than through protests and speeches. And she looked forward to her arrival …

All Illinois Planned Parenthoods Willing to Hide Child Rape

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Many pro-lifers don’t know that before Lila Rose came Mark Crutcher.

In 2002 Crutcher’s organization, Life Dynamics, conducted a comprehensive sting of every Planned Parenthood and National Abortion Federation clinic in the U.S. Continue reading at Jill Stanek.


St. Nicholas of Flue

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Today, the universal church celebrates the feast of St. Nicholas of Flue. During his lifetime, the Swiss saint had 10 children, became a hermit and later prevented a civil war.

Nicholas was born in 1417 near the Lake of Lucerne in Switzerland. He married at the age of 30 and had 10 children. In addition to his duties as a husband and a father, Nicholas donated his talents and time selflessly to the community and always strove to give an excellent moral example to all.

The saint was also able to devote much of his private life to developing a strong relationship with the Lord. He had a strict regime of fasting and he spent a great deal of time in contemplative prayer.

Around the year 1467, when he was 50 years old, Nicholas felt called to retire from the world and become a hermit. His wife and children gave their approval, and he left home to live in a hermitage a few miles away. While living as a hermit, Nicholas soon gained a wide reputation on account of his personal sanctity an…

Second Sunday in Lent: A Taste of Glory

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St. Joseph

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Today is the solemnity of St. Joseph, husband of the Virgin Mary, foster father of Jesus, and patron of the universal Church.  On May 31, we honor St. Joseph as the patron of workers.

Most of the reliable information on St. Joseph is contained in the first two chapters of the Gospels of Matthew and Luke. Here we discover that Joseph was of royal descent from David, that the family was from Bethlehem in Judea and that Joseph, who was a builder, had moved from Bethlehem to Nazareth in Galilee.

Joseph was engaged to Mary and upon learning that she was pregnant; he had plans to divorce her. Described in Matthew as a righteous man, he intended to dismiss her quietly. Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream to tell him, "Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit; she will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins" (MT 1:20-21). "When Joseph wo…

How to love like Mother Teresa

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March 18, 2011. You don't have to move to the slums of an Indian city to love like Mother Teresa, says Father Brian Kolodiejchuk, the postulator of her Cause of Canonization. In order to love like her, he says, you just need to practice great love in small ways.

Father Brian said that Mother Teresa's message could be summed up by the phrase that is enscribed on her tombstone, which is from the Gospel of John: “Love one another as I have loved you.”


Fr. Brian Kolodiejchuk
Postulator, Cause of Canonization of Mother Teresa
“Whenever Mother Teresa used to speak, she would try to bring the message to the people so that they could practice it in their own ordinary life even beginning with their own family. So, for example, she would say to do 'Ordinary things with extraordinary love,' or to do 'Small things with great love,' something everyone can do no matter what they are doing. But the important thing for Mother Teresa was the love with which we do it.”

Father …

What does it look like when we cooperate with God's plan?

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Father Barron speaks about the manifestation of our humble submission to the will of God in our lives.

St. Cyril of Jerusalem

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Today the Church honors  St. Cyril of Jerusalem (315-381), Bishop and Doctor of the Church.

Cyril, bishop of Jerusalem, was banished from his see on three occasions. With St. Athanasius and others, he belongs to the great champions of faith in the fight against Arianism. Famous as a teacher and preacher, he has left a series of catechetical instructions that constitute a priceless heirloom from Christian antiquity. Of the twenty-four extant discourses, nineteen were directed to catechumens during Lent as a preparation for baptism, while five so-called mystagogical instructions were given during Easter time to make the mysteries of Christianity better known to those already baptized.

Cyril of Jerusalem was given to the study of the Holy Scriptures from childhood, and made such progress that he became an eminent champion of the orthodox faith. He embraced the monastic institute and bound himself to perpetual chastity and austerity of life. He was ordained priest by St. Maximus, Patria…

St. Patrick, Apostle of Ireland

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Today is the feast of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland.

St. Patrick was born in Wales about 385 AD. His given name was Maewyn.

Until he was 16 he considered himself a pagan. He was kidnapped from the British mainland at that time by a group of Irish raiders who sold him into slavery. He escaped from slavery after six years and returned to his homeland. There he heard the call to return and bring Christianity to Ireland, so he went to Gaul and studied in the monastery under St. Germain, bishop of Auxerre for a period of twelve years.

He was ordained a priest, consecrated a bishop and returned to Ireland around 435 AD. Patrick was quite successful at winning converts, which led to clashes with the Celtic Druids. He was arrested several times, but escaped each time. He travelled throughout Ireland, establishing monasteries across the country. He also set up schools and churches which would aid him in his conversion of the Irish country to Christianity. In thirty-three years, he …

François-Marie Lethel explains what he said to the pope in spiritual retreat

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Pope Benedict XVI began his spiritual exercises with the cardinals of the Roman curia, in preparation for Easter. During the one week retreat he will spend his time in prayer and meditation. All the cardinals of the Roman Curia were invited to attend.

Lenten Reflection: The Capacity to Share

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St. Abraham

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Today's saint of the day is St. Abraham.

St. Abraham was born near the city of Edessa in the region of Mesopotamia of a wealthy family during the third century. After receiving an excellent education, Abraham was encouraged to get married. Following the wishes of his parents, he married but as soon as the ceremonies were over he told his bride of his wishes to remain a virgin and dedicate his life to God. His bride accepted this resolution and Abraham left her and retired to a hermitage near Edessa.

Ten years after he retreated from the world, his parents died and left a great amount of wealth to Abraham. As soon as he was aware of this, he asked a friend to distribute it to charitable causes. Through actions like this and his deep prayer life, Abraham became known throughout the region as a holy man and many came to him for guidance. His reputation even came to the ears of the bishop, and when Edessa became poisoned with sin and idolatry, Abraham was ordained and asked to go to t…

Adoration U

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First Place Winner in the Defund Planned Parenthood Contest

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This powerful video won first place in the Defund Planned Parenthood video contest sponsored by Live Action.

Join in Catholic Media Promotion Day Today

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Today is “Catholic Media Promotion Day.” Greg Willits of The Catholics Next Door and The Rosary Army came up with this creative and brilliant way of supporting and promoting Catholic Media.

First, I encourage everyone to go to the Facebook page and “like” it:

https://www.facebook.com/promotecatholicism

Then, using your blog, podcast or Facebook, list your favorite 3 blogs, 3 podcasts, 3 other media, 3 random Catholic things online, and your own projects. Once you’ve done that, post your link at the “Catholic Media Promotion Day” facebook page.

It’s also recommended that you go to iTunes and leave at least three positive written reviews for various Catholic podcasts and 3 positive written reviews for Catholic mobile applications.

Last…but certainly not least…go to Amazon and leave three positive reviews for three Catholic books you like (hint, hint…I have two Catholic books on Amazon: links are at the side bar…)

Please join with other bloggers, writers and Catholics worldwide to partici…

A Thank You From Moe Maraachli, Father of Baby Joseph

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Moe Maraachli, father of Baby Joseph, and Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests For Life, send out their thanks and gratitude to everyone who showed support for Baby Joseph though their trying times.

Details of Baby Joseph's Rescue, Touching Interview with Baby Joseph's Father and Fr. Frank Pavone

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A Fox News report on Baby Joseph, brought over from Canada to SSM Cardinal Glennon Children's Medical Center in St. Louis, MO. Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, accompanied Baby Joseph and his father, Moe Maraachli.



Touching Interview with Baby Joseph's father and Fr. Frank Pavone on Fox News:

Lenten Reflection: Extreme Love

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St. Louise de Marillac

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Today's saint is St. Louise de Marillac. Louise was born in Ferrières-en-Brie (near Meaux), Auvergne, France, on August 12, 1591. Born out of wedlock in Paris in 1581, Louise never knew who her mother was but was acknowledged and raised by her father, a member of the aristocracy. When her father married, Louise had a difficult time adjusting as was sent as a resident student to a Dominican convent where her aunt was a religious. This experience deepened her intellectual skills, as well as her desire to be a religious. When her father died and resources were limited, she lived in a boarding house where she had the opportunity to learn many basic domestic and organizational skills, as well as the secrets of herbal medicine.

When Louise was about sixteen years old, she developed a strong desire to enter the Capuchinesses. Her spiritual director discouraged her from entering the religious order, however, and her father having died, it became necessary to decide her vocation. Interpret…

St. Matilda

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Today is the feast of St. Matilda, who was the Queen of Germany and wife of Henry I. She was born in Engern, Westphalia, Germany in 895 to Count Detrich and his wife, Reinhild. Raised by her grandmother, an abbess, she entered into an arranged marriage with King Henry the Fowler of Saxony in 1913. Matilda became the mother of: Otto I, Emperor of Germany; Henry, Duke of Bavaria; St. Bruno, Archbishop of Cologne; Gerberga, who married Louis IV of France; Hedwig, the mother of Hugh Capet. As queen, Matilda was humble, holy, and very generous -- always ready to help the poor and the down-trodden.

Following her husband's death, Matilda made an unsuccessful attempt to secure the throne for her favorite son Henry, but his elder brother was elected and crowned in 936. Later, the two brothers joined in persecuting their mother, whom they accused of having impoverished the crown by her lavish almsgiving. To satisfy them, she renounced the possessions the deceased king had left her, and ret…

'Baby Joseph' Gets Second Chance at Life in U.S

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Thanks be to God for Fr. Frank Pavone and Bobby Schnidler! Our prayers have been answered.
This is an update of my previous post on Baby Joseph from FOX News:

The baby who was hours from being pulled off life support at his Canadian hospital has been rescued by the national director of Priests for Life and taken to the U.S. for treatment.

Thirteen-month-old Joseph Maraachli, who is currently kept alive by a respirator and was recently denied a transfer to a Michigan hospital to undergo a tracheotomy, arrived in the U.S. early Monday morning with Fr. Frank Pavone and other Priests for Life staff.

Read more.

Previous Posts:

Baby Joseph airlifted to St. Louis hospital


Supporters of Baby Joseph Head for London, Ontario in the Battle for Life and Parental Rights

Update: Canadian Hospital Agrees to Let Baby Joseph Die at Home

Fr. Frank Pavone seeks to save baby from death mandate

Baby Joseph airlifted to St. Louis hospital

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The Press Release from London Health Services Centre:

LONDON, Ontario, March 13, 2011 – Despite the strongest possible medical advice to the contrary from medical experts in Canada, the United States and Europe, the parents of Baby Joseph Maraachli have accepted an offer to transfer him by air to the faith-based Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri.

His parents exercised their legal right to have him discharged after LHSC exhausted all its legal options in attempting to deliver to Baby Joseph the best possible and most appropriate medical care, given the progressive, fatal neurodegenerative disease from which he suffers. An LHSC medical team transported Baby Joseph to London International Airport in the presence of his father.

The private plane carrying Baby Joseph, and any care to be provided in the U.S., will be paid for by U.S.-based interests and not by LHSC. The plane took off from London at approximately 10:20 p.m. on Sunday, March 13, 2011.

"As one o…

Reflection for the First Sunday in Lent

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Our Youth Are Disgusted With Planned Parenthood

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This says it all:




H/T: Dr. Gerard M. Nadal

Brief Blogging Break

Due to my studies, I will be taking a brief break from blogging. Have a happy and holy Ash Wednesday!

In the meantime, here's my Ash Wednesday post from last year, a quote for Ash Wednesday , altered Ash Wednesday prayers,  and Lenten Ideas 2011.

Be sure and check out Marcel's Lenten 2011  at Aggie Catholics.

Have a good week! Don't go away now -- I shall return!

St. John Joseph of the Cross

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Historically today is the feast of St. John Joseph of the Cross.

Self-denial is never an end in itself but is only a help toward greater charity—as the life of Saint John Joseph shows.

John Joseph was very ascetic even as a young man. He devoted himself even at his youngest years to a life of poverty and fasting. At 16 he joined the Franciscans in Naples; he was the first Italian to follow the reform movement of Saint Peter Alcantara. John’s reputation for holiness prompted his superiors to put him in charge of establishing a new friary even before he was ordained.

Obedience moved John to accept appointments as novice master, guardian and, finally, provincial. His years of mortification enabled him to offer these services to the friars with great charity. As guardian, he saw himslef with no higher priveledge and insisted on working in the kitchen or carrying the wood and water needed by the friars.

When his term as provincial expired, John Joseph dedicated himself to hearing confessio…

Vatican consults the bishops of the world on the New Evangelization

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The Vatican has asked every bishop from around the world how to bring the Christian message to those who have never heard the word of God and those who have left the faith.

Sisters of Life , a religious order that helps women facing questions of abortion

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In the heart of New York City, a group of nuns are hitting the streets to help build a sense of community in their neighborhoods. This group called the Sisters of Life, lives in the Bronx but travels throughout the five boroughs as they encounter people from every corner of the world.

St. Casimir

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The saint of the day is St. Casimir of Poland, confessor, who was also known as "The Peace-maker."

St. Casimir was born on October 3, 1458, the third of thirteen children of King Casimir IV and Elizabeth of Austria, daughter of Albert II of Habsburg.

The young prince was trained in spirituality and displayed holiness at an early age. In contrast to the other members of the royal court, he was a shining example of faith, piety, humility, and chastity. He had a great love for the Eucharist and for the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Hungarian nobles prevailed upon Casimir's father to send his 13-year-old son to be their king; Casimir obeyed, taking the crown, but refusing to exercise power. His army was outnumbered, his troops deserting because they were not paid. Casimir returned home, and was a conscientious objector from that time on.

Casimir foretold the hour of his death, and chose to die a virgin, refusing the advice of physicians who told him to marry, suggesting that this wo…

It's Time to Protect Our Young Girls: Stop Tax-Funding Planned Parenthood

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Tell Congress to stop funding Planned Parenthood, the biggest abortion chain in America.

In their last report, Planned Parenthood made a profit of over $63 MILLION.

They received $363 million in tax dollars in the last year.

Besides being the biggest abortion chain, Planned Parenthood puts it's "abortion-first" mentality above the well-being of young girls and women.

Planned Parenthood covers up the sexual abuse of minors and is willing to aid and abet the trafficking of children for sexual exploitation.

Go to exposeplannedparenthood.com and Call Congress Now -- Protect our young girls.

www.exposeplannedparenthood.com

Catholic Fire Music Spotlight: Interview with Sarah & Josh Holthusen

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I recently had the wonderful privilege of listening to the glorious music of the gifted singer/songwritersSarah and Josh Holthusen, a devout Catholic couple from Wichita, Kansas, and they agreed to let me interview them. They are both  graduates of Benedictine University in Atchison, Kansas and the parents of four boys.

Listen to their music.


How did the two of you meet?

SARAH:  We met on our very first day of college at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas. We just happened to be in the same orientation group. Josh overheard me say that I was interested in taking guitar lessons, and he offered to teach me. We became instant friends, and he eventually asked me to be his RCIA sponsor. A few months later, we began dating. Josh proposed to me nine months later, and we got married the summer before we graduated. We have been married almost 15 years!

How did you get started in the music business?

JOSH:  A couple of months after we graduated, we loaded a U-Haul full of dreams and …

Saint Katharine Drexel

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Today the Church celebrates the feast of St. Katharine Drexel, a Philadelphia heiress who abandoned her family’s fortune to found an order of sisters dedicated to serving the impoverished African American and American Indian populations of the United States.

Katharine, the second daughter of Francis Anthony and Hannah Drexel, was born in Philadelphia in 1858. Hannah died about a month after Katherine's birth.

A few years later, Katharine’s father, a wealthy and prominent banker and philanthropist, married Emma Bouvier – a distant aunt to Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onasis. Emma was a deeply religious woman. Three years later, Emma gave birth to her own child, a third daughter whom they named Louise. The deeply religious couple taught their children that wealth was meant to be shared with others, particularly the poor.

The three siblings – Elizabeth, Katharine and Louise -- were inseparable. They traveled out west together where they encountered native American Indians who lived on…