Monthly Archives: June 2014



God, our Father, we give thanks for Damien, our brother. Following Jesus, Your Son, he went to the lepers of Molokai, he became one of them even onto death; he showed them that You love them; he gave them back the pride of being human, and the hope of a future.

Therefore, we ask You; may we be resurrected by Your Spirit to walk in the footsteps of Damien, to be animated by the same faith.

Open our eyes, open our hearts, that we might go to all those abandoned, ignored, forgotten. Obtain that through us they may discover who You are. Raise up men and women ready to follow the road he has walked.

This is the prayer that we address to You, Father full of tenderness and love, You, our God, always and for all eternity. Amen.


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“Prince Charles dedicated a new bell at Bayeux Cathedral in memory of a Carmelite nun murdered by the Nazis in 1942 while he was in France marking the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

St. Teresa Benedicta, martyr of the Holocaust, was gassed at Auschwitz, and proclaimed a Patron of Europe by Pope John Paul II in 1999.

The bell had been sponsored by HM the Queen who was represented by Prince Charles at the service. He was called upon by the Cardinal Archbishop of Paris to choose the name of the bell, representing peace and freedom and brotherhood amongst all peoples.


The bell [did] peal out for the first time on 14th June, which in Carmelite tradition is the feast of Elisha, Old Testament successor to the Prophet Elijah, whose feast is 20th July, a key model in Carmelite spirituality and tradition.

Nine young people from America, Canada, Great Britain, Norway, Poland, Belgium, Holland, France and Germany took part in the ceremony. Bishop Nigel McCulloch, chaplain to the British Legion, said: ‘It was an iconic moment as the shared blessing of Reconciliation was given by Cardinal Archbishop Vingt Trois of Paris, the retired German Bishop Rainer Klug of Freiburg and myself,’ he said.

After asking His Royal Highness to name the bell the cardinal struck it twice – ‘which was quite a clang for those of us nearby!’ Bishop McCulloch commented.

Veteran James Aitken, aided by his grandson, a serving soldier with the Royal Artillery, then struck it once in memory of all those who had been killed in the D-Day landings. The cardinal blessed the bell as an act of reconciliation, sprinkling holy water over it, saying, ‘May Teresa Benedicta proclaim peace, freedom and brotherhood to the Glory of God and mankind.’

St Teresa Benedicta, whose original name was Edith Stein, first renounced her Jewish faith and then converted to Catholicism after reading the autobiography of Teresa of Avila, the Carmelite mystic.”
– This article was published in “The Catholic Universe” issue Friday 13th June, 2014. For subscriptions please visit (external link).


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“The reign of God in our soul resembles, in its beginnings and in its progress, a little leaven hidden in the dough. The first grace, which leads to conversion, and prepares the way for the great work of salvation, is often, in its beginnings, like a scarcely perceptible ferment. It is to all appearance a trifle, a simple detail in the thousand details of life, which leads, or perhaps restores, us to God: for example a chance meeting on a voyage; a conversation overheard at the psychological moment; a sermon, which has at length reached the ear of the soul; perhaps simply reading something good… Such is the leaven of grace buried in a man’s soul.

There it remains, hidden at first from profane eyes.

He goes about his usual occupations, nothing is changed in the routine of his exterior life, but his soul is moved in its very depths. Wait! If this soul offers no resistance, if it is generous enough to correspond to the divine impulse within it, you will soon see the effects which by degrees, will sanctify it completely. O precious leaven, O first grace, which will procure others for us, how important is it that we should receive you well, that we should give timely assistance to your salutary fermentation! Eternity depends on it.”
– Paraboles Evangeliques


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On “15th June is the feastday of St Orsisius. He was born in the 4th century in North Africa and at a young age became interested in monastic life through his meeting with St Pachomius. This saint asked St Orsisius, and another monk named Theodore, to accompany him on his travels, and to help him write a rule of life for the monks.

Despite his youth, St Orsisius was appointed Abbot at the monastery of Khenoboski, Egypt, but the older monks took exception to him being appointed so young. They wondered how someone so young could presume to guide the older experienced monks in spiritual matters. Others defended the appointment by arguing, ‘Is the Kingdom of God only for the elderly?’


St Orsisius stayed in that community for some time and was then chosen to be the Abbot at the monastic community of Tabennisi. All began well, but after some years complaints were made that St Orsisius was observing their rule of life too strictly and, not wishing to bring division to the community, he stepped down from being Abbot as a sign of his humility. The new Abbot, the same Theodore mentioned earlier, realising that St Orsisius was a monk of great spirituality, consulted him on many matters, seeing his advice on how to draw the monks closer to God. When Theodore died the monks again chose St Orsisius as their abbot, a position he held until his death twelve years later.

St Orsisius reminds us that young people can have a lot to share with us older people about spiritual truths. Also he shows us the power of humility and the need to forgo oneself for the greater good of others.”
– From: “Spiritual Thought from Fr Chris” (June 2014)


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When Jesus saw the great crowds all about him he gave orders to leave for the other side. One of the scribes came up and said to him, “Master, I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus replied, “Foxes have holes and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.”

Another man, one of his disciples, said to him, “Sir, let me go and bury my father first.” But Jesus replied, “Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their dead.”

V. The Gospel of the Lord.
R. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.


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R. Mark this, you who never think of God.

1. “How can you recite my commandments
and take my covenant on your lips,
you who despise my law
and throw my words to the winds? (R.)

2. “You who see a thief and go with him;
who throw in your lot with adulterers,
who unbridle your mouth for evil
and whose tongue is plotting crime. (R.)

3. “You who sit and malign your brother
and slander your own mother’s son.
You do this, and should I keep silence?
Do you think that I am like you? (R.)

4. “Mark this, you who never think of God,
lest I seize you and you cannot escape;
a sacrifice of thanksgiving honours me
and I will show God’s salvation to the upright. (R.)


Alleluia, alleluia!
I am the light of the world, says the Lord,
anyone who follows me
will have the light of life.


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The Lord says this:
For the three crimes, the four crimes, of Israel
I have made my decree and will not relent:
because they have sold the virtuous man for silver
and the poor man for a pair of sandals,
because they trample on the heads of ordinary people
and push the poor out of their path,
because father and son have both resorted to the same girl,
profaning my holy name,
because they stretch themselves out by the side of every altar
on clothes acquired as pledges,
and drink the wine of the people they have fined
in the house of their god…
Yet it was I who overthrew the Amorites when they attacked,
men tall as cedars and strong as oaks,
I who destroyed them,
both fruit above ground
and root below.
It was I who brought you out of the land of Egypt
and for forty years led you through the wilderness
to take possession of the Amorite’s country.
See then how I am going to crush you into the ground
as the threshing-sledge crushes when clogged by straw;
flight will not save even the swift,
the strong man will find his strength useless,
the mighty man will be powerless to save himself.
The bowman will not stand his ground,
the fast runner will not escape,
the horseman will not save himself,
the bravest warriors will run away naked that day.
It is the Lord who speaks.

V. The word of the Lord.
R. Thanks be to God.


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