Posted in DIVINE MERCY, SACRED and IMMACULATE HEARTS, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 15 February – Saint Claude de la Colombiere and Blessed Michael Sopoćko share a few things in common

Thought for the Day – 15 February – the Memorial of St Claude de la Colombiere (1641-1682) Apostle of the Sacred Heart and Blessed Michal Sopoćko (1888-1975) Apostle of Divine Mercy

Saint Claude de la Colombiere

and Blessed Michael Sopoćko

share a few things in commonbl sopocka and st claude 15 feb 2019.jpg

We celebrate the feast day of Blessed Michael Sopoko today, 15 February, which makes for a perfect opportunity to discuss one of the more curious details in the life of St Faustina Kowalska (1905–1938), known today as the Lord’s “secretary” of Divine Mercy.

So what’s so curious?

Amazing parallels can be drawn between St Faustina’s confessor, Blessed Sopoćko and the confessor of another saint — and “secretary” — St. Margaret Mary Alacoque (1647-1690), who received the revelations of the Sacred Heart in the 1670s.

In other words, the similarities between the holy priests Blessed Michael Sopoćko (1888-1975) and St Claude de la Colombiere, SJ (1641-1682), both of whom died today and, therefore, we celebrate their entry into life today.

Blessed Sopoćko , ordained to the priesthood over 100 years ago, served as confessor and spiritual director to St Faustina Kowalska, who received revelations of the Divine Mercy in the 1930s.   Saint Claude served as confessor and spiritual director of St Margaret Mary Alacoque, who received the revelations of the Sacred Heart in the 1670s.

So here is where the parallels begin. Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, like St Faustina, had doubts at first about her revelations.   For both young women, it was their confessors who played a large role in alleviating their doubts and encouraging them to embrace the special role the Lord seemed to be placing upon them.

But the parallels get even better.   Since St Margaret Mary Alacoque led a cloistered life — quiet and humble — it was her confessor who carried the burden of spreading the Sacred Heart message and devotion to the outside world.   This was the same situation with Fr Sopocko, who led the efforts to introduce the public to Faustina’s powerful private revelations and who arranged for the Lord’s requests of Faustina to be accomplished.   That includes hiring a painter to paint the image of the Merciful Saviour, now among Christianity’s most recognised images.

Here’s another interesting fact:

Saint Claude Colombiere died today, 15 February, the same day Blessed Sopoćko died. And 15 February, also happens to be St Faustina’s name day — the day of her patron saint, St Faustus.

Of course, when considering how the devotions to Divine Mercy and the Sacred Heart so strongly compliment each other, these details are far more than “curious.”   Certainly, they are Divine Providence at work, right?st claude and bl michal 15 feb 2019.jpg

Dr Robert Stackpole, STD, director of the St John Paul II Institute of Divine Mercy, a lay apostolate of the Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception, notes, “Much like the traditional devotion to the Sacred Heart, our Lord gave to St. Faustina new forms in which His Merciful Heart was to be honoured and new vessels for a fresh outpouring of His grace. Namely, the Image of Divine Mercy; the Chaplet of Divine Mercy and, of course, a new feast for the universal Church — the Feast of Divine Mercy, intended for the Sunday after Easter.”

None of these parallels have escaped the attention of Fr Seraphim Michalenko, MIC, a world-renown expert on the life of St Faustina and the message of Divine Mercy.

He notes that it took 300 years for Fr Claude Colombiere to be canonised.
“And here, Fr Sopoćko died in 1975 and he’s already beatified [in 2008],” Fr Seraphim says.

So what does his rapid rise to the honours of the altar, mean for us?

“That God is in a hurry to get His message out,” says Fr Seraphim.BlSopockoStFaustina

Adapted from the Library Archive of The Divine Mercy – (Felix Carroll Feb 13, 2014)

Read Dr Stackpole’s series that explores the relationship between The Sacred Heart and The Divine Mercy. Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5.

St Claude de la Colombiere, Pray for Us!st-claude-pray-for-us-15-feb-2017.jpg

Blessed Michal Sopoćko, Pray for Us!bl michal sopocka pray for us no 2 15 feb 2019.jpg

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Posted in FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on SIN, SACRED and IMMACULATE HEARTS, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 15 February – Nothing else, than the body that proved itself superior to death and became the source of our life.

One Minute Reflection – 15 February – Friday of the Fifth Week in Ordinary Time, Year C – Today’s First Reading: Genesis 3:1-8 and the Memorial of St Claude de la Colombiere (1641-1682) Apostle of the Sacred Heart and Blessed Michal Sopoćko (1888-1975) Apostle of Divine Mercy

“The woman saw that the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eyes and the tree was desirable for gaining wisdom.   So she took some of its fruit and ate it and she also gave some to her husband, who was with her and he ate it.”...Genesis 3:6

REFLECTION – “Those who have been tricked into taking poison, offset its harmful effect, by another drug.   The remedy, moreover, just like the poison, has to enter the system, so that its remedial effect, may thereby spread through the whole body.   Similarly, having tasted the poison, that is the fruit, that dissolved our nature, we were necessarily in need of something to reunite it.   Such a remedy had to enter into us, so that it might by its counteraction, undo the harm the body had already encountered from the poison.   And what is this remedy?   Nothing else, than the body that proved itself superior to death and became the source of our life.”…St Gregory of Nyssa (c 335–c395) Father of the Church (Catechetical Oration, 27)genesis 3 6 the woman saw that the fruit was good - those who have been tricked - st gregory of nyssa 15 feb 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Heavenly Father, Your great mercy, gave us Your Son!   Surely nothing can be a greater proof to us of Your unending love and mercy to Your lowly creatures, we who are dust.   Through Him, who died and rose for us, You have shown us the way of true mercy. Grant us this day that by the intercession of St Claude and Blessed Michal, we may take up our crosses with Him, never leaving the love of His Sacred Heart, so that we may join Your holy saints in eternal life.   Through Your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.st-claude-pray-for-us-15-feb-2018.jpg

bl michal sopocka pray for us - apostle of divine mercy 15 feb 2019.jpg

Posted in Our MORNING Offering, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, SACRED and IMMACULATE HEARTS

Our Morning Offering – 8 February – With this Heart, I will Love Thee

Our Morning Offering – 8 February – Friday of the Fourth week in Ordinary Time, Year C and the Memorial of  St Jerome Emiliani (1486–1537)

With this Heart, I will Love Thee
By Father Jean Croiset SJ (17th/18th Century)

I have nothing, O my Saviour and my God!
I have nothing, O my Saviour and my God!
I have nothing which can be pleasing unto Thee;
I can do nothing,
I am nothing
but I have a heart
and this is enough for me.
Health, honour and life itself
may be taken from me
but no man can rob me of my heart.
I have a heart
and with this heart I can love Thee,
O my Saviour Jesus,
worthy of all adoration!
And with this heart,
it is my determination to love You
and always I resolve to love Thee,
only to love Thee always.
Amenwith this heart i will love thee fr jean croiset sj - 8 feb 2019.no 2.jpg

Posted in Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SACRED and IMMACULATE HEARTS, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Our Morning Offering – 13 January – Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

Our Morning Offering – 13 January – Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

O Most Sacred, Most Loving Heart of Jesus
By Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

O Most Sacred, most loving Heart of Jesus,
You are concealed in the Holy Eucharist
and You beat for us still.
Now, as then You say,
“With desire I have desired.”
I worship You the,
with all my best love and awe,
with my fervent affection,
with my most subdued, most resolved will.
You, for a while, take up Your abode within me!
O make my heart beat with Your Heart.
Purify it of all that is earthly,
all that is proud and sensual,
all that is hard and cruel,
of all perversity,
of all disorder,
of all deadness.
So fill it with Thee,
that neither the events of the day
nor the circumstances of the time,
may have power to ruffle it
but that, in Your love
and Your fear,
it may have peace.
Amen.o most sacred most loving heart of jesus bl john henry newman - 13 jan 2019.jpg

Posted in CATHOLIC DEVOTIONS of the Month, IGNATIAN/JESUIT - Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MORNING Prayers, PAPAL MESSAGES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SACRED and IMMACULATE HEARTS, The HOLY NAME, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD

Thought for the Day – 3 January – The Name, the Heart and the Blood

Thought for the Day – 3 January – The Name, the Heart and the Blood

A name represents that person, his or her identity.   According to Matthew 1:21, Joseph was directed by an angel to call Mary’s son “Jesus,” a name that means “God saves.”   This is Jesus’ identity.   He is the Saviour of the world.   As such His Name is “above every name” and is the name at which “every knee should bend” (Philippians 2:9-10). Moreover, according to a speech that St Peter gave in front of the Sanhedrin, “There is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved” (Acts: 4:12).   The Name of Jesus says it all and is all-powerful.   It’s a prayer in itself.

As Jesus can be represented by His Name, so He is also represented by His Heart.   The heart is the centre of a person, that person’s deepest interior or identity.   Thus devotion to the Name of Jesus goes with devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.   Jesus fulfilled the Name given to Him when He suffered and died on the cross, when His Heart was pierced so that Blood and Water, the sacramental life of the Church, would flow forth and save the world.

Devotion to Jesus’ Name and Heart includes devotion to His Precious Blood.   These three go together:  the Name, the Heart, and the Blood.   In fact, Saint John XXIII wrote about this in a 30 June 1960 letter entitled “On Promoting Devotion to the Most Precious Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.”   He wrote:

“We judge it most timely to call our beloved children’s attention to the unbreakable bond which must exist between the devotions to the Most Holy Name and Most Sacred Heart of Jesus — already so widespread among Christians — and devotion to the incarnate Word’s Most Precious Blood, ‘shed for many, to the remission of sins.’
“Suffice it to recall the spiritual favours that our predecessors from the sixteenth century on have attached to practising devotion to the Most Holy Name of Jesus, which in the previous century St Bernardine of Siena untiringly spread throughout Italy.   No less striking, are the benefits the popes have attached to practicing devotion to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, whose rise and spread owe so much to the revelations of the Sacred Heart to St Margaret Mary Alacoque.   So highly have all the popes regarded this devotion that again and again in their official acts they have expounded its nature, defended its validity, promoted its practice.

“Likewise the devotion to the Most Precious Blood, which owes its marvelous diffusion to the 19th-century Roman priest, St Gaspar del Bufalo, has rightly merited the approval and backing of this Apostolic See.

“Amid today’s most serious and pressing spiritual needs, may this latest exercise of that ‘care for all the churches’ proper to our sovereign office awaken in Christian hearts a firm conviction about the supreme abiding effectiveness of these three devotions.”

Jesus—the Name, the Heart, and the Blood that flowed from it to save the world—all represent the Person.   May the Name of Jesus be reverenced and honoured at all times and places world without end. Amen

Apostles of Prayer – Fr James Kubicki SJname-above-all-names-10-jan-2018

LORD JESUS CHRIST, SON OF GOD, HAVE MERCY ON ME A SINNERthe jesus prayer - 3 jan 2019

Posted in Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SACRED and IMMACULATE HEARTS, The HOLY SOULS

Our Morning Offering – 26 November

Our Morning Offering – 26 November

O Heart of Jesus, All Love
Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

O Heart of Jesus all love,
I offer You these humble prayers for myself
and for all those, who unite themselves with me,
in spirit to adore You.
O holiest Heart of Jesus most lovely,
I intend to renew and to offer to You,
these acts of adoration and these prayers,
for myself, a wretched sinner
and for all those, who are associated with me
in Your adoration,
through all moments which I breath,
even to the end of my life.
I recommend to You, O my Jesus,
Holy Church, Your dear spouse
and our true Mother,
all just souls and all poor sinners,
the afflicted, the dying and all mankind.
Let not Your Blood be shed for them in vain.
Finally, deign to apply it in relief
of the souls in Purgatory
and of these in particular….
Ameno heart of jesus, all love - bl john henry newman - 26 nov 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, Redemptorists, SACRED and IMMACULATE HEARTS, SUNDAY REFLECTIONS, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Sunday Reflection – 18 November – Reparation for outrages against the Most Blessed Sacrament – St Alphonsus Liguori

Sunday Reflection – 18 November

Reparation for outrages against the Most Blessed Sacrament

 St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787) Doctor of the Church

Meditate the following text written by Saint Alphonsus Maria and translated by Norman J. Muckermann, CSsR.    It is astonishingly relevant to the need for reparation, when one considers the current proliferation of so many outrages against the Most Blessed Sacrament.

The Sorrowful Heart of Jesus
It is impossible for us to appreciate how greatly afflicted the Heart of Jesus was for love of us and at the same time not be filled with pity for Him. . . . The principal sorrow affecting the Heart of Jesus was not so much knowing the torments and insults His enemies were preparing for Him.   Rather, it was seeing how ready we would be to reject His immense love.

Desecrations of the Sacred Host
Jesus distinctly saw all the sins which we would commit even after His sufferings, even after His bitter and ignominious death on the cross.   He foresaw, too, the insults which sinners would offer His Sacred Heart which He would leave on earth in the Most Holy Sacrament as proof of His love.   These insults are almost too horrible to mention:  people trampling the sacred hosts underfoot, throwing them into gutters or piles of refuse and even using them to worship the devil himself!

The Pledge of His Love
Even the knowledge that these and other defamations would happen did not prevent Jesus from giving us this great pledge of His love, the Holy Eucharist.   Jesus has an infinite hatred for sin, yet it seems that His great love for us even overcomes this bitterness.   Because of His love, He allows these sacrileges to happen in order not to deprive us of this Divine Food.   Should not this alone suffice to make us love a Heart that has loved us so much?

Jesus Forsaken on the Altar
What more could Jesus do to deserve our love?   Is our ingratitude so great that we will still leave Jesus forsaken on the altar, as so many are wont to do?   Rather, should we not unite ourselves to those few who gather to praise Him and acknowledge His divine presence?   Should we not melt with love, as do the candles which adorn the altars where the Holy Sacrament is preserved?   There the Sacred Heart remains burning with love for us.   Shall we not in turn burn with love for Jesus?”should we not melt with love - st alphonsus -18 nov 2018 sunday reflection