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Tag Archives: Catholic priests

TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (LUKE 18:1-8)

TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (LUKE 18:1-8)
GOD WILL SEE JUSTICE DONE TO HIS CHOSEN WHO CRY TO HIM. 
 
 

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ST ANTHONY MARY CLARET, BISHOP AND CONFESSOR

ST ANTHONY MARY CLARET, BISHOP AND CONFESSOR

ST ANTHONY MARY CLARET, BISHOP AND CONFESSOR – MEMORIAL: OCTOBER 24

Anthony Mary Claret was born at Vich in Spain, of devout and honourable parents. He started life as a weaver, but afterwards became a priest. He was first engaged in parochial work, but later went to Rome to be sent on the foreign missions by the Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith. By the will of God, however, he returned to Spain and as a Missionary Apostolic travelled through Catalonia and the Canary Islands.

HE FOUNDED THE CONGREGATION OF THE SONS OF THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY

Besides being a prolific writer of fine books, he also founded the Congregation of the Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Appointed Archbishop of the See of Santiago in Cuba, he proved, by his virtues, to be a zealous pastor. He restored the seminary, improved the education and discipline of the clergy, established social works and founded the Teaching Sisters of Mary Immaculate for the Christian education for girls.

THE TEACHING SISTERS OF MARY IMMACULATE 

Finally summoned to Madrid as the confessor and councillor in important ecclesiastical affairs for the Queen of Spain, he gave an excellent example of austere life adorned with every virtue. In the Vatican Council, he strongly defended the infallibility of the Roman Pontiff.

A STAUNCH PROMOTER OF DEVOTION TO THE BLESSED SACRAMENT 

He was a staunch promoter of devotion to the Blessed Sacrament and to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and her Rosary. At length, at Font Froide, in France, he died in exile in the year 1870 [on October 24]. Being renowned for miracles, Pope Pius XI added him to the list of the blessed and Pius XII to that of the saints.

PRAYER:

O God, who glorified blessed Anthony Mary, your Confessor and Bishop, because of his zeal for souls, and through him established in the Church new households of men and women religious, we beseech you to grant that, with his counsels as a guide, and through the merits of his prayers, we may continually apply ourselves to seeking the salvation of souls. Through our Lord…

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964 [bold headings added afterwards]

 

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PRAYER FOR THE POPE AND THE BISHOPS

PRAYER FOR THE POPE AND THE BISHOPS

Good Lord Christ Jesus, I cry thee mercy for all states that be in Holy Church, for the Pope and all his cardinals, for all archbishops and bishops, and for all the order of priesthood, for all men and women of religion, and especially for them that are busy to save and defend the Faith of Holy Church. Lord, for thy mercy, bless them and grant them the victory over all their enemies, and speed them in all that they go about in thy worship; for all that are in grace, at this time, God send them perseverance unto their lives’ end, and make me worthy to be partaker of their prayers, and them of mine, and each of us of others.

– The Book of Margery Kempe (modernised text 1936)

 

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IF MAN REALLY UNDERSTOOD THIS MYSTERY, HE WOULD DIE OF LOVE

IF MAN REALLY UNDERSTOOD THIS MYSTERY, HE WOULD DIE OF LOVE

THE HOLY MASS

All good works added together are not equal to the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, for they are the work of man, and the Mass is the work of God. Martyrdom is nothing in comparison. It is the sacrifice which man makes to God of his life; the Mass is the sacrifice which God makes to man of His Body and Blood.

GOD’S WORK

At the voice of the priest Our Lord descends from heaven, and encloses himself in a little Host. The glance of God is arrested at the altar. “This,” He says, “is my Beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased. He can refuse nothing to the merits of the offering of this Victim.

THE GOOD GOD IS PRESENT

How beautiful to think that after the Consecration the good God is present, as He is in Heaven! If man really understood this mystery, he would die of love. God considers our weakness… Oh! if we had faith, if we understood the value of the Holy Sacrifice, we should be much more zealous in assisting at it.

– Bl. Cure d’Ars, from: Laverty & Sons (eds.), 1905

 

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BLESSED WLADYSLAW BUKOWINSKI, THE PRIEST WHO WORKED AS A WATCHMAN ON A CONSTRUCTION SITE

BLESSED WLADYSLAW BUKOWINSKI, THE PRIEST WHO WORKED AS A WATCHMAN ON A CONSTRUCTION SITE

Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (Mt5:10)

In September a Beatification Mass took place to give the Church a new Blessed. Blessed Wladyslaw Bukowinski was born in 1904 in Ukraine but was a naturalised Pole. He was educated in different parts of Ukraine and later in Krakow. From 1923 until 1925 Blessed Wladyslaw studied and graduated with honours from the Polish School of Political Science. He was made a Master of Law in 1926. Also that year he decided to study for the priesthood. After his studies were completed Blessed Wladyslaw was ordained a priest in 1931. He worked for the Church in a variety of settings, moving to Lucka in 1936.

At the outbreak of World War II the Bishop of Lucka appointed Blessed Wladyslaw as pastor in the main Cathedral, where he became known for his calmness in the face of war and for his intelligence and spiritual values in defence of religion. For this, Blessed Wladyslaw was arrested on 22 August 1940 and sentenced to eight years in camps. Towards the end of the war various prisoners were massacred, but Blessed Wladyslaw narrowly avoided this fate and later returned to his priestly duties.

He was arrested a second time and was relocated to Kiev, where he was imprisoned and accused of treason. In 1946 Blessed Wladyslaw was sentenced to ten years in the gulag, his labour being digging ditches and clearing trees. He once contracted severe pneumonia and was taken to hospital under guard. When well again he was sent back to prison. Whilst in prison, despite his own discomfort, Blessed Wladyslaw brought comfort to other prisoners, especially through the sacraments.

In 1954, Blessed Wladyslaw was released from prison and sent to Karanganda in Kazakhstan, where he worked as a watchman on a construction site. He was actually the first Catholic priest to arrive in Kazakhstan and still continued his priestly ministry, secretly celebrating Mass in private homes with curtained windows to avoid detection. As an exile, Blessed Wladyslaw was obliged to report to the police station every month.

He celebrated Holy Mass in secrecy in people’s homes with the curtains closed to avoid detection

In June 1955, Blessed Wladyslaw rejected a proposition that he return to Poland, deciding instead to assume citizenship of the Soviet Union so that he could remain and continue his priestly ministry in Kazakhstan. In May 1956 he received his Soviet passport and continued working as a priest.

In 1959, Blessed Wladyslaw was again arrested and accused of illegal actions. He was sentenced to three and a half years in a labour camp at Irkutsk. In 1961 he was released and returned to Karanganda, where he continued his priestly ministry again.

He visited Poland three times between 1963 and 1973, meeting the Archbishop of Krakow, Karol Wojtyla, who became Pope John Paul II. Blessed Wladyslaw was constantly the subject of communist surveillance. On returning to Karanganda, Blessed Wladyslaw’s health started to deteriorate and he died on 3 December 1974 with his rosary beads in his hand. In 2011 Blessed Wladyslaw was granted a posthumous award of the Commander Cross with the Star of the Order of the Rebirth of Poland.

– From: Spiritual Thought From Fr Chris/ November 2016

 

 

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ST JOHN BOSTE: “MY FUNCTION IS TO INVADE SOULS, NOT TO MEDDLE IN TEMPORAL INVASIONS”

ST JOHN BOSTE: “MY FUNCTION IS TO INVADE SOULS, NOT TO MEDDLE IN TEMPORAL INVASIONS”

On 24th July, the Church in this country celebrates the feast of St John Boste, one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales. Collectively, these Martyrs are celebrated in May, but St John Boste is celebrated today, the anniversary of his execution.

St John was born around 1544 in Dufton, Westmoreland. He was educated at Appleby Grammar School and Queen’s College, Oxford. Two years later he was back in Appleby, to become the first headmaster under the charter of Queen Elizabeth I.

St John converted to Catholicism in 1576, left England, and was ordained a priest at Rheims in March 1581. St John returned to England and worked as a missionary priest in Northern England. The authorities, who were against Catholics, wanted to arrest him. However, he evaded arrest for ten years before being betrayed to the authorities.

After having celebrated a clandestine Mass in 1594 held at Waterhouse the authorities stormed the building and found St John hiding in a ‘priest hole’ behind the fireplace.

Following his arrest, St John was taken to the Tower of London for interrogation on the rack. He was later taken to Dryburn, where he was hung, drawn and quartered. St John recited the Angelus prayer as he ascended the scaffold. St John denied he was a traitor by saying, “My function is to invade souls, not to meddle in temporal invasions.”

John Boste was beatified by Pope Pius XI in 1929 and declared a saint as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales by Pope Paul VI in 1970. St John Boste, pray for us.

– From: Spiritual Thought from Fr Chris

 

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ABOUT BLESSED GEORGE SWALLOWELL, MARTYR

ABOUT BLESSED GEORGE SWALLOWELL, MARTYR

George Swallowell was a Protestant minister of Houghton Spring, England, when he visited a Catholic layman imprisoned for his faith.

George began a doctrinal debate with the man, a contest he soon found himself losing. When the Catholic parishioner pointed out the absurdity of claiming that Queen Elizabeth I was supreme head of the Church, George began to recognise the fallacy of his own beliefs. Not long afterwards, he mounted the pulpit of his church to announce that he had been in error in professing the Protestant religion, and would no longer lead services there.

He was quickly jailed. In July of 1594, George was tried together with two Catholic priests, (Blesseds) John Boste and John Ingram. Seized with fear, George agreed to conform to the Protestant religion. Father Boste turned to him and asked, “George Swallowell, what have you done?”

Immediately George repented of his lapse and repudiated his preceding words, declaring that he would die in the same faith as that of the priests. Father Boste turned to him again and placed his hand upon his head to absolve him. George was drawn and quartered with merciless brutality on 26th July 1594.

– From: Catholic Compendium

 

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