Monthly Archives: April 2012


Blessed Jose Tous y Soler, beatified on 25th April 2010, “was born in 1811 in Igualada, in the province of Barcelona, Spain. He was born the ninth of twelve children into a deeply Catholic family.

The role of his family turns out to be fundamental in the formation of Blessed Jose. It was the place where he first received the seeds of faith, and a place where he was taught to love God.

In 1820 Blessed Jose’s family moved to Barcelona to look for better employment. It was there that Blessed Jose met the Capuchin Friars, who followed the Rule of St Francis. Blessed Jose asked to join these Friars at the age of 16, and so on 18th February 1827 he donned the Capuchin habit in the novitiate.

From the very beginning of his formation years Blessed Jose proved to be a religious of great virtue. The testimonies of his fellow-friars tell of his exemplary recollection, his solid piety, his ready obedience, his humility and purity, and of his complete fidelity to Franciscan poverty. In 1834 Blessed Jose was ordained a priest.

A short time later Spain went through a period of great social unrest and for a short time Blessed Jose was arrested and imprisoned due to the suppression of religious houses. Eventually Blessed Jose had to go into exile, which brought him first to France and then to Northern Italy. In 1836 he travelled to Grenoble, in the Diocese of Toulouse, France, where he completed his studies.

Although unable to live with his fellow friars in his community, Blessed Jose never gave in to resentment or bitterness, continuing his work for God and the Church in a simple and poor Franciscan manner.

In 1843 Blessed Jose was able to return to Spain, exercising his priestly ministry in the parish of St Francisco de Paola in Barcelona. In this parish he became aware of the needs of the children and young people in spiritual formation and set about to form them in the Christian life.

In 1859 Blessed Jose founded the Institute of the Capuchin Sisters of the Mother of the Good Shepherd, whose life was to educate children and young people whilst having devotion to Mary, the Mother of the Good Shepherd. This new Institute grew in number and Blessed Jose was able to oversee a great increase in this important work for God. Blessed Jose died in 1871 while celebrating Mass in the school of the Mother of the Good Shepherd in Barcelona.

Pope Benedict [at the Beatification Mass] described Blessed Jose as ‘an austere man, at the same time he was generous with others, a priest who was preoccupied for the salvation of souls.’ In the homily at the Beatification Mass some words of Blessed Jose were recalled, which are as a motto of life, ‘Even if everything is dark, one must always be faithful, faithful to God.'”
– from: ‘Spiritual Thought from Fr Chris’



1. God be with you till we meet again;
by his counsels guide, uphold you,
with his sheep securely fold you:
God be with you till we meet again.

2. God be with you till we meet again;
‘neath his wings protecting hide you,
daily manna still provide you:
God be with you till we meet again.

3. God be with you till we meet again;
when life’s perils thick confound you,
put his arm unfailing round you:
God be with you till we meet again.

4. God be with you till we meet again;
keep love’s banner floating o’er you,
smite death’s threatening wave before you:
God be with you till we meet again.




The late eighth century “Martyrology of Tallaght”, Ireland’s most ancient book of saints, co-authored by Saint Oengus the Culdee and Saint Maelruain, provides early testimony to the veneration of the sixth-century abbot Saint Mac Nessi.

The latter governed the abbey of Clonmacnoise in County Offaly, Ireland, for sixteen years, from about 474 to about 590. He became abbot at a time when Clonmacnoise was at the height of its prosperity as a school of virtue.

No further details of Saint Mac Nessi’s life are known. In another hagiographic work of Saint Oengus, his famed poetic catalogue of Irish saints known as the Felire, Mac Nessi is referred to as “Mac Nessi the chaste”, indicating thereby that the saint was a man of exceptional purity of heart.

“Our soul is waiting for the Lord.
The Lord is our help and our shield.
May your love be upon us, O Lord,
as we place all our hope in you.”




“You are now in anguish, but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one shall deprive you of your joy.” (Jn 16:22)

Our parting will not be for long; we shall see each other again in heaven and be united with our Saviour.
There we shall praise Him with heart and soul, sing of His mercies and enjoy happiness with Him for ever.
– St Aloysius

Dear St Aloysius, you maintained purity and innocence amid corruption. May I remain pure in a corrupt world.




Philip was born in Bethsaida. At first a disciple of John the Baptist, he became a follower of Christ. James, a cousin of the Lord and the son of Alphaeus, ruled over the Church in Jerusalem, wrote an epistle, and converted many of the Jewish people to the faith. He led an austere life and suffered martyrdom in the year 62.


O God, who gladden us each year
with the feast day of the Apostles Philip and James,
grant us, through their prayers,
a share in the Passion and Resurrection
of Your Only Begotten Son,
so that we may merit to behold You for eternity.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
who lives and reigns with You in the unity
of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.



O Jesus, Lover of souls, we recommend unto You the souls of all Your servants, who have departed with the sign of faith and sleep the sleep of peace. We beseech You, Lord and Saviour, that, as in Your mercy to them You became man, so now You would admit them to Your presence above.

Gracious Lord, we beseech You, remember not against them the sins of their youth and their ignorances; but be mindful of them in Your heavenly glory. May the heavens be opened to them. May the Archangel St Michael conduct them to You. May Your holy Angels come forth to meet them, and carry them to the holy city of the heavenly Jerusalem. May they rest in peace. Amen.
(Bl. John Henry Newman)



O Blessed Archangel Gabriel,
we beseech you, intercede for us
at the throne of Mercy in our
present necessities, that as you
announced to Mary the Mystery
of the Incarnation, so through
your prayers and patronage in
Heaven, we may obtain
the benefits of the same and sing
the praise of God forever in the
land of the living. Amen.



We adore thee, O Christ, and we praise thee, because by thy holy Cross thou hast redeemed the world.

May the Heart of Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament be praised, adored and loved with grateful affection, at every moment, in all the tabernacles of the world, even to the End of Time! Amen.



Dear Brothers and Sisters without a Bible – this is the story that changes everyone’s life for ever: the Gospel. (Part 18)

John 18:1-40


When Jesus had finished speaking, he went with his disciples to the other side of the Kidron Valley. There was a garden there. Jesus entered with his disciples.

Now Judas, who betrayed him, knew the place, since Jesus had often met there with his disciples. So Judas took soldiers and some servants from the chief priests and Pharisees, and they went to the garden with lanterns, torches and weapons.

Jesus knew all that was going to happen to him; he stepped forward and asked, “Who are you looking for?” They answered, “Jesus the Nazarene.” Jesus said, “I am he.” Judas, who betrayed him, stood there with them.

When Jesus said, “I am he,” they moved back and fell to the ground. He then asked a second time, “Who are you looking for?” and they answered, “Jesus the Nazarene.” Jesus replied, “I told you that I am he. If you are looking for me, let these others go.” So what Jesus had said came true: “I have not lost one of those you gave me.”

Simon Peter had a sword; he drew it and struck Malchus, the High Priest’s servant, cutting off his right ear. But Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword into its sheath; shall I not drink the cup which the Father has given me?”

The guards and the soldiers, with their commander, seized Jesus and bound him; and they took him first to Annas. Annas was the father-in-law of Caiaphas who was the High Priest that year; and it was Caiaphas who had told the Jews, “It is better that one man should die for the people.”

Simon Peter with another disciple followed Jesus. Because this disciple was known to the High Priest, they let him enter the courtyard of the High Priest along with Jesus, but Peter had to stay outside at the door. The other disciple, who was known to the High Priest, went out and spoke to the maidservant at the gate and brought Peter in. Then this maidservant on duty at the door said to Peter, “So you also are one of his disciples?” But he answered, “I am not.”

Now the servants and the guards had made a charcoal fire and were standing and warming themselves, because it was cold. Peter was also with them warming himself.

The High Priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and his teaching. Jesus answered him, “I have spoken openly to the world; I have always taught in places where the Jews meet together, either at the assemblies in synagogues or in the Temple. I did not teach secretly. Why then do you question me? Ask those who heard me, they know what I said.”

At this reply one of the guards standing there gave Jesus a blow on the face, saying, “Is that the way to answer the High Priest?” Jesus said to him, “If I have spoken wrongly, point it out; but if I have spoken rightly, why do you strike me?”

Then Annas sent him, bound, to Caiaphas, the High Priest.

Now Simon Peter stood there warming himself. They said to him, “Surely you also are one of his disciples.” He denied it, and answered, “I am not.” One of the High Priest’s servants, a kinsman of the one whose ear Peter had cut off, asked, “Did I not see you with him in the garden?” Again, Peter denied it, and at once the cock crowed.

Then they led Jesus from the house of Caiaphas to the headquarters of the Roman governor. It was now morning. The Jews didn’t go inside, lest they be made unclean by entering the house of a pagan, and therefore not allowed to eat the Passover meal. So Pilate came out and asked, “What charge do you bring against this man?”

They answered, “If he were not a criminal, we would not be handing him over to you.” Pilate said, “Take him yourselves and judge him according to your own law.” But they replied, “We ourselves are not allowed to put anyone to death.”

It was clear from this what kind of death Jesus was to die, according to what Jesus himself had foretold.

Pilate then entered the court again, called Jesus and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus replied, “Does this word come from you, or did you hear it from others?”

Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingship does not come from this world. If I were a king, like those of this world, my guards would have fought to save me from being handed over to the Jews. But my kingship is not of this world.”

Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” And Jesus answered, “Just as you say, I am a king. For this I was born and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is on the side of truth hears my voice.” Pilate said, “What is truth?”

Pilate then went out to the Jews again and said, “I find no crime in this man. Now, according to custom, I must release a prisoner to you at the Passover. With your agreement I will release to you the King of the Jews.” But they insisted and cried out, “Not this man, but Barabbas!” Now Barabbas was a robber.




Sister Lucia dos Santos, one of the little shepherds of Fatima, “gives two clues why ‘saying yes to life’ is becoming heroic in our day. The first clue…: ‘It is sad that so many are allowing themselves to be dominated by the diabolical wave that is sweeping the world and they are so blind that they cannot see their error.’ The second…: ‘The principal cause of evil in the world…is the lack of union with God in prayer. If we are not careful and attentive in obtaining the strength from God, we will fail because our times are very bad and we are weak.’

Support for Sister Lucia’s claim that our evil times are the result of a ‘diabolical wave sweeping the world’ is to be found in the revelations of a modern mystic, Alexandrina da Costa, who died in Balasar, Portugal on October 13, 1955.

Her biographer, the late Francis Johnston, writes at one point: ‘During this arduous, rapturous period, her ecstasies gravitated more towards the state of the Church and the world. She received a piercing gift of prophesy and foretold many events that subsequently happened… Frequently, while in ecstasy, Alexandrina was heard lamenting and praying aloud for the Church, which she saw in danger of a ‘great crisis’ and threatened by a ‘wild beast’. She was heard quoting Our Lord as follows: ‘Tell My ministers to be vigilant, for the devil is preparing a massive assault on the Church. But pray and trust; victory will be Mine.’
(For over thirteen years, Alexandrina maintained a perfect fast, neither eating nor drinking anything except for the reception of Holy Communion. Rome is studying her case for possible beatification.)

It is a curious fact that those who are most ardent in their belief in God also believe strongly in the devil. The reverse is also true: Those who are not on fire with the love of God, either do not believe in the devil at all, or they do not think that he is very powerful, which is just the way the devil would have it. A great deal of his success and/or his power and influence comes from people’s failing to acknowledge either his existence or his activity – or both!

To the testimony of Sister Lucia and of Alexandrina da Costa – not only to the existence of Satan but to his powerful influence – I would like to add a third voice, that of Sister Josefa Menendez, who died in Poitiers, France, in 1923 after barely four years as a Religious of the Sacred Heart.

In her biography, written by another Religious of the Sacred Heart, we read the following: ‘The hour of the Prince of Darkness had struck, and Josefa entered the lists against him. She was now to meet him at every turn. But Our Lord fought in her and was preparing the most humiliating of defeats for Satan…by means of the frail instrument that Josefa was, we can see a combat between God and Satan, between Charity and hatred.

‘All the demon’s efforts during that long period of nine months were centred and concentrated on the destruction of Josefa’s religious vocation. [She was a novice at the time.] He spared nothing to bend her to his will, violent temptations, fear of crushing responsibility by which he terrified her, perfidious falsehoods that alarmed her conscience, obsessions that, so to speak, endowed her with a dual personality, and made her think what she did not believe, and do what she did not want to do, without allowing her at the time to discern that she was under diabolic domination, [which included], deceptive and menacing appearances, blows, abductions and burnings…all [of which] were hurled at the frail child as a tornado, in which it would seem she must suffer shipwreck.’

In this last case, Satan worked quite openly, as in the case of St John Vianney, the holy Cure of Ars, implicitly acknowledging thereby the ineffectiveness of his disguises. But almost always, and as a general norm, he prefers to work quietly, indirectly and THROUGH OTHERS, who are more susceptible to his wiles. Today, Sister Lucia asserts that there are many ‘who are allowing themselves to be dominated by the diabolical wave that is sweeping the world and are so blind they cannot see their error.’

We must keep in mind [all through the following section] that the true Christian spirit is one of love, of life and of sacrifice. [The problem is] the contrast, the wide gulf between this true Christian spirit and the spirit of the world, dominated by the evil spirit as it is”: (1)

The attitudes and laws of many states have been changes in ways that are contrary to the respect of human life.

ABORTION is the intentional killing of a child between conception and birth. It is wrong because it attacks the sanctity of a life made in the image of God. Modern contraceptive pills, which are partly and sometimes entirely based on synthetic progesterone, also sometimes act as abortifacients.

EUTHANASIA is assisted suicide, which prevents God’s completion of a life and corrodes respect for the old and infirm. It also prepares the way for the more general and involuntary killing of those judged unfit to live.

HUMAN CLONING is the artificial duplication of human beings. IN VITRO FERTILISATION (IVF) is artificial non-sexual procreation. They attack the dignity of the child, the sanctity of natural procreation and lead in practice to the mass destruction of embryos.

DIVORCE, COHABITATION AND CIVIL PARTNERSHIPS destabilise and devalue the dignity of natural Marriage and the family as the true foundations of society.

ARTIFICIAL CONTRACEPTION AND HOMOSEXUAL ACTIVITY separate the gift of sexuality from procreation or married love altogether, contributing to a sexually irresponsible and sterile culture.


1. It is a work of mercy to avoid these practices ourselves and to help others avoid them by word and example.

2. The message of Fatima has been given to us by the Mother of God Herself. In 1917 she spoke to the three shepherd children and through them told us to stop offending God, because He is already too much offended by the sins of mankind. Perhaps we know the message well, but are we doing all we can to actually live it and spread it to others? Enormous perils face our troubled and sinful world of today. Here a summary of what we should do in order to respond to Our Lady’s Motherly plea to her children:

– OFFER UP OUR DAILY DUTIES AS A SACRIFICE for the conversion of sinners and in reparation for our sins and those of others. Jesus said: “The penance that I request and require now is the sacrifice demanded of everybody by the accomplishment of his own duty and the observance of My Law.”

– SAY THE ROSARY EVERY DAY – at least five decades – whilst meditating on the various mysteries, ending each mystery with the prayer: “O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell; lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of thy mercy.” The Rosary is the scourge of the devil and a prayer which is pleasing to God.

– WEAR THE BROWN SCAPULAR as a sign of our personal consecration to Our Lady and make acts of reparation to Her Immaculate Heart.

– ATTEND HOLY MASS EVEN DAILY, if possible, and spend more time in ADORATION BEFORE THE MOST BLESSED SACRAMENT. This will prove to be the most valuable time of our life.

– PRAY AND OFFER SACRIFICES FOR THE CONVERSION OF POOR SINNERS saying the prayer which Our Lady gave to the three shepherds: “O Jesus, it is for love of You, for the conversion of poor sinners and in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.”


– CONSECRATE OURSELVES AND OUR FAMILIES TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY. Our Lady told the children that “God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart.

Pope Pius XII said: “The time for doubting Fatima is past; it is now time for action. In the Old Testament God repeatedly sent the Prophets to remind His people of their eternal destiny and to warn and even punish them when they strayed from the path of salvation. Today He send the Queen of Prophets Herself, entrusted with the same message to all people of today’s world: “Pray, do penance for your sins, amend your lives, or God will be compelled to let fall the arm of His justice.”

Fatima is a loud warning bell for us all to amend our lives; a loving invitation for sincere contrition on our part.

Part(1) quoted from: Msgr. Joseph A. Cirrincione