Saturday, April 23, 2016

Saint April 24 : St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen : Patron of Travelors

St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen
MARTYR
Feast: April 24


Information:
Feast Day:April 24
Born:1577 at Sigmaringen, Hohenzollern, Germany
Died:24 April 1622 at Grusch, Grisons, Switzerland
Canonized:29 June 1746 by Pope Benedict XIV
Major Shrine:Capuchin Convent of Weltkirchen (Feldkirch), Austria
He was born in 1577, at Sigmarengen, a town in Germany, in the principality of Hoinvenzollen. The name of his father was John Rey. The saint was christened Mark, performed his studies in the university of Fribourg in Switzerland, and while he taught philosophy, commenced doctor of laws. He at that time never drank wine, and wore a hair-shirt. His modesty, meekness, chastity, and all other virtues, charmed all that had the happiness of his acquaintance. In 1604, he accompanied three young gentlemen of that country on their travels through the principal parts of Europe. During six years, which he continued in this employment, he never ceased to instil into them the most heroic and tender sentiments of piety. He received the holy sacrament very frequently, particularly on all the principal holidays: in every town where he came, he visited the hospitals and churches, passed several hours on his knees in the presence of the blessed sacrament, and gave to the poor sometimes the very clothes off his back. After this he practiced the law in quality of counsellor or advocate, at Colmar, in Alsace, with great reputation, but with greater virtue. Justice and religion directed all his actions. He scrupulously forbore all invectives, detractions, and whatever might affect the reputation of any adversary. His charity procured him the surname of counsellor and advocate for the poor: but the injustices of a colleague in protracting lawsuits for gain, and his finding fault with our saint for producing all his proofs for his clients in the beginning, in order to the quicker dispatch, gave him a disgust of a profession which was to many an occasion of sin, and determined him to enter among the Capuchin friars. He first received holy orders, and having said his first mass in their convent at Fribourg, on the feast of St. Francis, in 1612, he consecrated himself to God by taking the habit. The guardian gave him, in religion, the name of Fidelis, or Faithful, alluding to that text of the Apocalypse which promises a crown of life to him who shall continue faithful to the end. From that moment humiliations, macerations, and implicit obedience were his delight. He overcame temptations by discovering them to his director, and submitting to his advice with regard to his conduct under them. By his last will, he bequeathed his patrimony to the bishop's seminary, for the establishment of a fund for the support of poor students, to whom he also left his library; and gave the remainder of his substance to the poor.


In regard to dress and furniture, he always chose that for his own use which was the least valuable and convenient. He fasted Advent, Lent, and Vigils, on bread and water, with dried fruits, tasting nothing which had been dressed by fire. His life was a continued prayer and recollection, and at his devotions he seemed rather like an angel than a man. His earnest and perpetual petition to God was, that he would always preserve him from sin, and from falling into tepidity or sloth in his service. He sought the most abject and most painful employments even when superior; knowing that God exalts those highest who have here humbled themselves the lowest and the nearest to their own nothingness. He had no sooner finished his course of theology, than he was employed in preaching and in hearing confessions; and being sent superior to the convent of Weltkirchen, that town and many neighboring places were totally reformed by his zealous labors, and several Calvinists converted. The congregation de propaganda fide, sent to father Fidelis a commission to go and  preach among the Grisons; and he was the first missionary that was sent into those parts after that people had embraced Calvinism. Eight other fathers of his order were his assistants, and labored in this mission under his direction. The Calvinists of that territory, being incensed at his attempt, loudly threatened his life, and he prepared himself for martyrdom on entering upon this new harvest. Ralph de Salis, and another Calvinist gentleman, were converted by his first conferences. The missionary penetrated into Pretigout, a small district of the Grisons, in 1622, on the feast of the Epiphany, and gained every day new conquests to Christ; the conversion of which souls ought to be regarded as more the fruit of the ardent prayers in which he passed great part of the nights, than of his sermons and conferences in the day. These wonderful effects of his apostolic zeal, whereof the bishop of Coire sent a large and full account to the congregation de propaganda, so enraged the Calvinists in that province, who had lately rebelled against the emperor. their sovereign, that they were determined to bear with them no longer. 'The holy father having notice of it, thought of nothing but preparing himself for his conflict, passing whole nights in fervent prayer before the blessed sacrament, or before his crucifix, and often prostrate on the ground. On the 24th of April, 1622, he made his confession to his companion with great compunction, said mass, and then preached at Gruch, a considerable borough. At the end of his sermon, which he delivered with more than ordinary fire, he stood silent on a sudden, with his eyes fixed on heaven, in an ecstasy, during some time. He foretold his death to several persons in the clearest terms, and subscribed his last letters in this manner: "Brother Fidelis, who will be shortly the food of worms." From Gruch he went to preach at Sevis, where, with great energy, he exhorted the Catholics to constancy in the faith. A Calvinist having discharged his musket at him in the church, the Catholics entreated him to leave the place. He answered, that death was his gain and his joy, and that he was ready to lay down his life in God's cause. On his road back to Gruch, he met twenty Calvinist soldiers with a minister at their head. They called him false prophet, and urged him to embrace their sect. He answered: "I am sent to you to confute, not to embrace your heresy. The Catholic religion is the faith of all ages, I fear not death." One of them beat him down to the ground by a stroke on the head with his backsword. The martyr rose again on his knees, and stretching out his arms in the form of a cross, said with a feeble voice "Pardon my enemies, O Lord: blinded by passion they know not what they do. Lord Jesus, have pity on me. Mary, mother of Jesus, assist me." Another stroke clove his skull, and he fell to the ground and lay wetering in his blood. The soldiers, not content with this, added many stabs in his body, and hacked his left leg, as they said, to punish him for his many journeys into those parts to preach to them. A Catholic woman lay concealed near the place during this butchery; and after the soldiers were gone, coming out to see the effects of it, found the martyr's eyes open, and fixed on the heavens. He died in 1622, the forty-fifth year of his age, and the tenth of his religious profession. He was buried by the Catholics the next day. The rebels were soon after defeated by the imperialists, an event which the martyr had foretold them. The minister was converted by this circumstance, and made a public abjuration of his heresy. After six months, the martyr's body was found incorrupt, but the head and left arm separate from the trunk. These being put into two cases, were translated from thence to the cathedral of Coire, at the earnest suit of the bishop, and laid under the high altar with great pomp; the remainder of the corpse was deposited in the Capuchin's church at Weltkirchen. Three miracles performed by his relics and intercession, out of three hundred and five produced, are inserted in the decree of his beatification, published by pope Benedict XIII., in 1729. Other miracles were proved, and the decree of his canonization was published by Benedict XIV., in 1746. The 24th of April is appointed the day of his festival, and his name is inserted in the Roman Martyrology. See the acts of his canonization: also his life, written by Dom. Placid, abbot of Weissenau, or Augia Brigantina, published by Dom. Bernard Pez, librarian in the famous abbey of Melch, in Austria, in his Bibliotheca Ascetica, t. 10, p. 403.
To contribute to the conversion of a soul from sin is something far more excellent than to raise a dead body to life. This must soon fall again a prey to death; and only recovers by such a miracle the enjoyment of the frail and empty goods of this world. But the soul which, from the death of sin, is raised to the life of grace, is immortal, and, from a slave of the devil and a firebrand of hell, passes to the inestimable dignity and privileges of a child of' God; by which divine adoption she is rescued out of the abyss of infinite misery, and exalted to the most sublime state of glory and happiness, in which all the treasures of grace and of heaven are her portion forever. Hunger, thirst, watchings, labors, and a thousand martyrdoms, ought to seem nothing to one employed in the sacred ministry, with the hopes of gaining but  one sinner to Christ. Moreover, God himself will be his recompense, who is witness, and keeps a faithful account of all his fatigues and least sufferings.
source: Lives of the Saints by Alban Butler

Was Shakespeare Catholic - 5 Reasons from History that Agree to SHARE #Shakespeare


 On April 23rd 1616 the playwright William Shakespeare died on his birthday so we now celebrate 400 years of this great playwright.
William Shakespeare was born on April 23 1616. He was an English poet, playwright. He wrote 38 plays, 154 sonnets.  Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire. At 18 years of age, he married Anne Hathaway. They had three children: Susanna, and twins Hamnet and Judith. 
1. John Shakespeare William’s father, was identified in 1592 as a recusant, that is a Catholic who refused to attend the services of the Church of England. 
2. Fr. John Frith, who officiated the marriage of Shakespear to Anne Hathaway in 1582 in the village of Temple Grafton, was identified by the government in 1586 as a Roman Catholic priest. This Church was at a distance from Shakespeare's home so it is speculated that he went there due to his adherence to the Catholic Church.  
3.Shakespeare’s daughter Susanna was named a recusant  onn May 5, 1606 by the government. Shakespeare left all his wealth to her. 
4.  Shakespeare purchased Blackfriars Gatehouse in London on March 10, 1613. The gatehouse was rumored to be a hiding place for Catholic priests and had secret tunnels. The Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C., holds Shakespeare's copy of the deed of purchase.
5. An Anglican minister wrote a statement confirming that Shakespeare died a Catholic. Archdeacon Richard Davies, of Gloucestershire wrote in notes —a collection of biographies written by the Rev. William Fulman—that Shakespeare "dyed a Papyst [died a Papist]."  According to an article first published in 1918 in Old and Sold Antiques Digest, the Fulman manuscript is at Oxford University's Corpus Christi College.

Musician PRINCE Dies - Professed Faith in God in VIDEO Interview - Pray for his soul....


Vatican Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, the President of the Pontifical Council for Culture, Tweeted the Lyrics from one of his songs: "Sometimes, sometimes I wish that life was never ending, All good things they say, never last. (#Prince, Sometimes It Snows In April)"
PRINCE Rogers Nelson (June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016) was a North American singer. He died on April 21, 2016 at the age of 57. Prince was born in Minneapolis. He died at his Paisley Park home in Chanhassen, He had flu-like symptoms in the previous weeks. Prince sold over 100 million records worldwide, His parents were Mattie Della (Shaw) and John Lewis Nelson. His parents were both African American musicians, Prince's sister Tika Evene was born in 1960. When he was 37, he married his 22-year-old backup singer Mayte Garcia in 1996. They had a son named Boy Gregory on October 16, 1996, who was born with Pfeiffer syndrome and died a week later. Prince and Mayte divorced in 1999. In 2001, Prince married Manuela Testolini. She filed for divorce in May 2006. Prince joined the Jehovah's Witnesses in 2001, He attended meetings at a local Kingdom Hall and occasionally knocked on people's doors to discuss the Faith. (Biographical Information from Wikipedia)
In an 1985 Interview below from MTV Prince explains that he believes in God and prays.
 Please Pray for his soul....

Wow #PopeFrancis hears Confessions of 16 Teens at Jubilee for Year of Mercy - "Let us forgive!" TEXT Message of Pope to Teens

The Jubilee for teens which is part of the Extraordinary Year of Mercy. The theme for this three day event is "Growing merciful as the Father”. 70 thousand teenagers aged 13 to 16 year old from all over the world. There were confessions heard by 150 priests and by Pope Francis himself, in the colonnade of St Peter’s Basilica.  There will be a special Mass Sunday morning in St Peter’s Square with Pope Francis. Pope Francis surprised thousands of teenagers in St. Peter's Square by personally hearing confessions for more than an hour Saturday morning. The Holy Father offered the Sacrament of Reconciliation to 16 teenage boys and girls. beneath the colonnade in front of St Peter’s Basilica. The teens went to  Rome’s Olympic Stadium and saw a video message from the Holy Father.  He said, “Don’t just prepare your rucksacks and your banners – but your hearts and minds as well”. “Being merciful means being able to forgive. And this is not easy, is it? Sometimes it happens that, in my family, at school, in the parish, at the gym, or while we’re having fun, someone does something and we feel offended; or maybe in a nervous moment we offend someone. Let us not remain in that state of anger or desire for revenge! It serves nothing! It’s like a woodworm which eats our soul and doesn’t allow us to be happy. Let us forgive! Let us forgive and forget the offence we’ve received, so that we may understand Jesus’ teaching and be his disciples and witnesses of mercy,” the Pope said. “How often it happens to me to have to call a friend but I can’t get through because there is no service. I’m sure this also happens to you, that you’re cell phone doesn’t connect in some places… Well, remember that if Jesus is not in your life, it’s as if there is no [phone] service! You can’t get in contact with someone and you close yourself off. Let us be where there is service! In your family, parish, or school, so that we will always have something good and true to say in this world.” The Teen Jubilee will be held until Monday April 25th.

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Sat. April 23, 2016


Saturday of the Fourth Week of Easter
Lectionary: 284


Reading 1ACTS 13:44-52

On the following sabbath
almost the whole city
gathered to hear the word of the Lord.
When the Jews saw the crowds, they were filled with jealousy
and with violent abuse contradicted what Paul said.
Both Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly and said,
“It was necessary that the word of God be spoken to you first,
but since you reject it
and condemn yourselves as unworthy of eternal life,
we now turn to the Gentiles.
For so the Lord has commanded us,
I have made you a light to the Gentiles,
that you may be an instrument of salvation
to the ends of the earth.


The Gentiles were delighted when they heard this
and glorified the word of the Lord.
All who were destined for eternal life came to believe,
and the word of the Lord continued to spread
through the whole region.
The Jews, however, incited the women of prominence who were worshipers
and the leading men of the city,
stirred up a persecution against Paul and Barnabas,
and expelled them from their territory.
So they shook the dust from their feet in protest against them
and went to Iconium.
The disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit.

Responsorial PsalmPS 98:1, 2-3AB, 3CD-4

R. (3cd) All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Sing to the LORD a new song,
for he has done wondrous deeds;
His right hand has won victory for him,
his holy arm.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
or:
R. Alleluia.
The LORD has made his salvation known:
in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice.
He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness
toward the house of Israel.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
or:
R. Alleluia.
All the ends of the earth have seen
the salvation by our God.
Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands;
break into song; sing praise.
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
or:
R. Alleluia.

AlleluiaJN 8:31B-32

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I fyou remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples,
and you will know the truth, says the Lord.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelJN 14:7-14

Jesus said to his disciples:
“If you know me, then you will also know my Father.
From now on you do know him and have seen him.”
Philip said to Jesus,
“Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.”
Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time
and you still do not know me, Philip?
Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.
How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?
Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me?
The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own.
The Father who dwells in me is doing his works.
Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me,
or else, believe because of the works themselves.
Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever believes in me will do the works that I do,
and will do greater ones than these,
because I am going to the Father.
And whatever you ask in my name, I will do,
so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it.”
Due to technical difficulties Mass starts at 1:15 of video

Saint April 23 : St. Adalbert of Prague - Patron of Poland and Bohemia

BISHOP AND MARTYR


Information:
Feast Day:April 23
Born:939, Libice nad Cidlinou, Bohemia
Died:997, Truso (ElblÄ…g) or Kaliningrad Oblast
Patron of:Bohemia; Poland; Prussia
Born 939 of a noble Bohemian family; died 997. He assumed the name of the Archbishop Adalbert (his name had been Wojtech), under whom he studied at Magdeburg. He became Bishop of Prague, whence he was obliged to flee on account of the enmity he had aroused by his efforts to reform the clergy of his diocese. He betook himself to Rome, and when released by Pope John XV from his episcopal obligations, withdrew to a monastery and occupied himself in the most humble duties of the house. Recalled by his people, who received him with great demonstrations of joy, he was nevertheless expelled a second time and returned to Rome. The people of Hungary were just then turning towards Christianity. Adalbert went among them as a missionary, and probably baptized King Geysa and his family, and King Stephen. He afterwards evangelized the Poles, and was made Archbishop of Gnesen. But he again relinquished his see, and set out to preach to the idolatrous inhabitants of what is now the Kingdom of Prussia. Success attended his efforts at first, but his imperious manner in commanding them to abandon paganism irritated them, and at the instigation of one of the pagan priests he was killed. This was in the year 997. His feast is celebrated 23 April, and he is called the Apostle of Prussia. Boleslas I, Prince of Poland, is said to have ransomed his body for an equivalent weight of gold. He is thought to be the author of the war-song, "Boga-Rodzica", which the Poles used to sing when going to battle.


source: Ewtn