Posted in MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN TITLES, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Thought for the Day – 10 December – The Feast of Our Lady and the Holy House of Loreto

Thought for the Day – 10 December – The Feast of Our Lady and the Holy House of Loreto

There are some curious facts about the Holy House.

The stone on which the original walls are built and the mortar used in their construction have never been indigenous to the neighborhood of Loreto.   But both stone and mortar are alleged to be chemically identical with the materials most commonly found in Nazareth.

The Holy House does not rest and has never rested upon foundations sunk into the earth where it now stands.   The point was formally investigated in 1751 under Pope Benedict XIV.   What was then found is, therefore, fully in accord with the tradition of a building transferred whole from some more primitive site.

There are other strange facts in The House of the Virgin Mary.   So much is this the case, that when one turns the final page, the Holy House of Loreto continues to be as enigmatic as when one started reading.   In fact, it remains as puzzling, perhaps, as when it first appeared so far from the Holy Land.   It holds its secrets yet.   For those who come as pilgrims, however, it leaves its mark.   Our faith is tied to Mystery and this is one of them!

Our Lady of Loreto, Pray for Us!our lady of loreto pray for us - 10 dec 2017

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Posted in Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN TITLES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, SAINT of the DAY

Quote of the Day – 10 December – Bl John Henry Newman on the Holy House of Loreto

Quote of the Day – 10 December –

The Feast of Our Lady and the Holy House of Loreto

“I went to Loreto with a simple faith,
believing what I still believe,
even more so after having seen.
Now I no longer have any doubts.”

Blessed Cardinal Henry John Newman (1801-1890)
Written in 1848i-went-to-loreto-bl-john-henry-newman-10-dec-2018 no 3

Posted in MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN TITLES, MIRACLES, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, St JOSEMARIA Escriva and Opus Dei

St Josemaria and Our Lady of Loreto – 10 December

St Josemaria and Our Lady of Loreto – 10 December

Msgr Josemaria Escriva went to Loreto for the first time on January 3 and 4, 1948.   But he considered himself especially indebted to Our Lady of Loreto for a very particular reason:  she had heard his prayer in a time of acute need.   The 1950s were years of great suffering for St Josemaria because of misunderstandings and conflicts.   Amidst all these difficulties he decided to go to Loreto to place himself under our Lady’s protection.   In her book Tiempo de Caminar, Ana Sastre tells the story of that visit:

“On August the fourteenth, 1951, Monsignor Escrivá decided to go to Loreto by car to be there on the fifteenth and consecrate Opus Dei to our Blessed Lady.   The heat was stifling and they were very thirsty all the way.   There was no motorway.   The road followed the line of valleys, went steeply up the Apennine Mountains and finally plunged down towards the Adriatic coast.
According to a centuries-old tradition the Holy House of Nazareth has stood on the hill of Loreto since 1294, and a basilica was later built around it.   The Holy House is rectangular in shape and its walls are about four and a half meters high.   One of the walls is modern, but the others, which have no foundations and are blackened by the smoke of candles, are, according to tradition, the walls of the House at Nazareth.   The structure of the Holy House and the materials of which it is built, bear no relation to those of local architecture in olden times but are exactly similar to houses built in Palestine twenty centuries ago:  sandstone blocks with a limestone mortar.   The shrine stands on a ridge covered in laurel-trees, from which comes the name ‘Loreto’.
St Josemaria’s party parked in the central square and he got out of the car quickly.   For fifteen or twenty minutes he was lost to sight among the people filling the basilica. Finally he emerged, after praying to our Lady, smiling and in good spirits.   It was seven-thirty in the evening and they had to go back to Ancona to spend the night.
The next morning, before the sun was high, they drove back to Loreto.   In spite of the early hour, the shrine was already completely full.   St Josemaria vested for Mass in the sacristy and came to the altar of the Holy House of Nazareth to say Mass.   The small space was packed with people and the heat was stifling.

Holy Mass:
Under the votive lamps, he wanted to celebrate the sacred liturgy with all possible devotion.   But he had not allowed for the fervour of the congregation on this feast day. He wrote later, “When I would kiss the altar in accordance with the rubrics, three or four local women would accompany me.   It was distracting but certainly moving.   I also noticed that above the altar in that holy house, which tradition says was the home of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, these words were written:  ‘Here the Word was made flesh.’   Here, on a bit of the earth on which we live, in a house built by men, God dwelt” (Christ is Passing By, 12).
During the Mass, without a formula but in words filled with faith, St Josemaria consecrated Opus Dei to our Lady.   Afterwards, speaking quietly to the people with him, he repeated it in the name of everyone in Opus Dei.   “We consecrate to you our being and our life; everything that is ours:   all that we love and all that we are.    Our bodies, our hearts and our souls are for you;  we are yours.   And to make this consecration truly effective and lasting, today at your feet, O Mary, we renew the dedication that we made to God in Opus Dei.   Inspire us with a deep love for the Church and the Pope and make us live in full submission to all their teachings.”

st josemaria at mass
Invoking our Lady:
St Josemaria had been noticeably tired when he left Rome.   But on the way back he seemed like a new man, as though all the obstacles in God’s path had crumbled into dust. Some weeks before he had suggested a new aspiration to his sons and daughters in Opus Dei, an invocation to the Mother of Jesus for them to repeat constantly:  “Most sweet heart of Mary, prepare a safe way!”   Our Lady’s loving smile always went ahead along the paths of Opus Dei.   Once again, its founder had stepped forward in the parameters of faith.   He used the human means but trusted in a decisive intervention from on high. “God is the same as always.   It is men of faith that are needed:  and then, there will be a renewal of the wonders we read of in the Gospel.   Ecce non est abbreviata manus Domini, – God’s arm, his power, has not grown weaker!” (The Way, 586).

St Josemaria visited the Holy House of Nazareth on six further occasions:  7 November, 1953;  12 May 1955;  8 May 1960;  22 April 1969;  8 May 1969 and the last one on 22 April 1971.   On 9 December 1973, he said, “I think that all the representations, all the names, all the invocations given by Christians to the Virgin Mary, are wonderful. But in Loreto I am especially indebted to our Lady.”

Posted in ADVENT, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN TITLES, MIRACLES, MORNING Prayers, Pope BENEDICT XVI, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

PRAYER OF POPE BENEDICT XVI to Our Lady of Loreto on his visit to the Shrine of Loreto and private prayer at the Holy House in 2012 – 10 December

PRAYER OF POPE BENEDICT XVI

VISIT TO THE SHRINE OF LORETO
AND PRIVATE PRAYER AT THE HOLY HOUSE

Mary, Mother of the “Yes”, you listened to Jesus,
and know the tone of His voice
and the beating of His heart.
Morning Star, speak to us of Him,
and tell us about your journey
of following Him on the path of faith.

Mary, who dwelt with Jesus in Nazareth,
impress on our lives your sentiments,
your docility, your attentive silence,
and make the Word flourish in genuinely free choices.

Mary, speak to us of Jesus,
so that the freshness of our faith
shines in our eyes and warms
the heart of those we meet,
as you did when visiting Elizabeth,
who in her old age rejoiced with you for the gift of life.

Mary, Virgin of the Magnificat
help us to bring joy to the world and, as at Cana,
lead every young person involved in service of others
to do only what Jesus will tell them.

Mary, look upon the Agora of youth,
so that the soil of the Italian Church will be fertile.
Pray that Jesus, dead and Risen, is reborn in us,
and transforms us into a night full of light, full of him.

Mary, Our Lady of Loreto, Gate of Heaven,
help us to lift our eyes on high.
We want to see Jesus, to speak with Him,
to proclaim His love to all.

BENEDICTUS PP. XVI
4 October 2012prayer to our lady of loreto by pope benedict - 2012 - made 10 dec 2017

Posted in ADVENT, MARIAN TITLES, MIRACLES, MORNING Prayers, ON the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Thought for the Day – 10 December – The Memorial of Our Lady and the Holy House of Loreto

Thought for the Day – 10 December – The Memorial of Our Lady and the Holy House of Loreto

LORETO enshrines the original home of the holiest persons who walked the earth:  the God-Man Jesus Christ, His mother Mary and the virginal father, St Joseph.   Therefore, it should not be surprising that this sanctuary should attract Saints.   There is a marble plaque in the basilica on which are carved the names of thirty-nine saints and twenty-two other holy persons who came on pilgrimage to Loreto.   In 1846, there were one hundred and sixty names.    One hundred and fifty years later that number must have easily doubled.

If one were to single out a Saint who was particularly attached to Loreto, it would seem that the pilgrim saint, Benedict Joseph Labre, would have first place.   After finding out that his vocation was to be a rather exceptional one—–literally a pilgrim beggar—–Benedict left his home in France in 1770 for Rome at age twenty-two.   On this first journey, he stopped on his way at Loreto and Assisi.   He stayed in Rome for nine months visiting all the holy places but was back in Loreto in September of the following year.   In June 1772, he was back again at Loreto.   He then extended his pilgrimages to all the famous shrines in Europe.   At the end of 1776, he settled down in Rome, leaving only to make an occasional pilgrimage to his favorite shrine, the Holy House.   He continued this each year until his death in 1783 at the age of 35.labre

The people of Loreto came to know him well.   He was that beggar who lived on the charity of others, refusing to take any more than necessary to fill his immediate needs. When compassionate friends offered him a room closer to the shrine, he turned it down when he found it contained a bed.   Surely the poverty and utter detachment of the Holy Family of Nazareth was reflected in a most outstanding way in this Saint who spent many long vigils of prayer in the Holy House.st benedict joseph labre

St Benedict Joseph Labre Pray for us!st benedict joseph labre - 10 dec 2017

Posted in ADVENT, Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, MARIAN TITLES, MIRACLES, MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Quote of the Day – 10 December – – The Memorial of Our Lady and the Holy House of Loreto

Quote of the Day – 10 December – The Memorial of Our Lady and the Holy House of Loretoloreto-caravaggio

loreto - mario 2loreto - mario 3

“I went to Loreto with a simple faith,
believing what I still believe,
even more so after having seen.
Now I no longer have any doubts.
If you ask me why I believe it, it is because everyone believes it in Rome—
cautious and skeptical as they are in many other things.
I believe it, as I believe that there is a planet called Neptune,
or that chloroform destroys the sense of pain.
I have no prior difficulties on this point.”i went to loreto - bl john henry newman - 10 dec 2017

“It was thought that St Maximilian Kolbe never visited Loreto.
Our Lady, however, always manages to bring to what was her hom, while on earth,
those who revere and venerate her in a special way.
It comes as no surprise, then, to learn from the Mass register of the Basilica,
that he participated in a Mass along with thirty priests from Yugoslavia on 13 July 1919.
The following day, the feast of the Franciscan theologian St Bonaventure,
he celebrated Mass within the Holy house itself.
And so another name, a modem day Saint, has been added to the list of Saints
and holy persons who have visited the shrine of Loreto.
Undoubtedly there will be many more as time goes on, paying their respects
and drawing inspiration from the holiest House in this world. ”

Blessed Cardinal Henry John Newman – written in 1848 and 1884

The Popes on Loreto – http://www.catholictradition.org/Mary/loreto3b.htmloreto squareour lady of loreto - mario

Posted in ADVENT, DOCTORS of the Church, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN TITLES, MIRACLES, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 10 December- The Memorial of Our Lady and the Holy House of Loreto

One Minute Reflection – 10 December- The Memorial of Our Lady and the Holy House of Loreto

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength and with all your mind………..Luke 10:27luke 10 27

REFLECTION – “Love for Christ pierced Mary’s heart in such a way that no part of it was left unkindled.   Mary thus fulfilled the first commandment of love in all its fullness
and without the slightest imperfection.”….St Bernard of Clairvaux (1090–1153) Doctor of the Churchlove for christ - st bernard - 10 dec 2917

PRAYER – O Mother! You, who carried the Divine Saviour in your immaculate womb and lived with Him in the Holy House that we venerate on the Loreto Hill, grant us the grace to seek Him and imitate His example, He who leads us to salvation.    Our Lady of Loreto work miracles in us all! Amenour lady of loreto pray for us - 10 dec 2017