Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Top 10 Quotes of St. Thomas Aquinas - the Angelic Doctor - to help you in Life!

Top 10 Quotations of Saint Thomas Aquinas
1. “Charity is the form, mover, mother and root of all the virtues.”
2. “If you seek the example of love: “Greater love than this no man has, than to lay down his life for his friends.” Such a man was Christ on the cross.
3. “The only-begotten Son of God, wanting to make us sharers in his divinity, assumed our nature, so that he, made man, might make men gods.”
4.“The things that we love tell us what we are.”
5. “There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.”
6. “To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible.”
7. “Love takes up where knowledge leaves off.”
8. “To convert somebody, go and take them by the hand and guide them.”
9. "The Eucharist is the Sacrament of Love; It signifies Love, It produces love. The Eucharist is the consummation of the whole spiritual life."
10. "To love God is something greater than to know Him."

Attack at Sudan-South border with 15 People Killed - 25 wounded, 3 Children missing, and 19 Houses burnt

ABYEI, JANUARY 24, 2020 (CISA)-The United Nations Interim Security Force in Abyei (UNISFA) has been deployed to secure the village of Kolom, near the Sudan-South Sudan border after 15 people were killed in retaliatory attacks on Wednesday, January 22.

Daniel Adekera, spokesperson for UNISFA condemned the attacks which also left 25 wounded, three children missing, and 19 houses burnt down, in the disputed oil rich region.

“From all indications the perpetrators are from the Misseriya tribe because three days ago there was a similar incident in the same place where three Misseriyas were killed, purportedly by the Dinka. So, this seems to have been a reprisal attack from the Misseriya tribe,” Adekera said.

Adekera said the Misseriya and Dinka had been engaged in peaceful, face-to-face meetings ahead of the dry season migration period.

“The meetings were arranged to pre-empt escalation… or any incidence of violence, because normally during migration we hold these pre-migration meetings just to prepare them and get them to understand how they want to be peaceful. So far meetings have been peaceful. So this has come to us as a surprise,” said Adekera.

Sudan’s government spokesman Faisal Mohamed said in a statement that the attack was “unacceptable”.

“The government of Sudan will play its role in protecting civilians and calls UNIFSA to move immediately to the village to protect the civilians there,” he said.

UNISFA troops are deployed in the area to control the movements of armed actors and to try to contain any potential conflict before it arises.

The United Nations Interim Security Force in Abyei (UNISFA) was deployed by the UN Security Council in 2011 to assist in peacekeeping after the deadly clashes in the region.

The UN Security Council in 2018 warned that the situation in Abyei and along the Sudan-South Sudan border “continues to constitute a serious threat to international peace,” and called on the two countries to show concrete progress on border demarcation and monitoring.
Full Text Source: CISA NEWS

Pope Francis appoints New Personal Secretary Fr. Gonzalo Aemilius, a Priest from Uruguay who worked with street Children

Father Aemilius is the Pope's new Personal Secretary
The Uruguayan priest, whom Pope Francis has known since 2006, is chosen to take the place left open by Father Pedacchio last December.
By Vatican News

Pope Francis and the Uruguayan priest, Gonzalo Aemilius, have known each other since 2006, since Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Archbishop of Buenos Aires, made contact with him because he had heard of Father Aemilius’  work with street kids.

Gonzalo Aemilius, a Doctor of Theology, is the Pope's new Special Secretary. He takes the place of Father Fabian Pedacchio, the Argentine priest who worked alongside the Pope from 2013 to 2019, and who returned last December to his post at the Congregation of Bishops.

Father Aemilius was born in Montevideo on 18 September 1979 and was ordained a priest on 6 May 2006.

His face may be familiar to many because he is the one, who the Pope greeted and summoned to him when he was part of the crowd gathered outside a Vatican Gate to welcome Pope Francis at the beginning of his pontificate on the morning of 17 March 2013. He recognized him and invited him to accompany him into the church where he was about to celebrate his first Mass with the faithful after his election. At the end of the liturgy, Pope Francis introduced Father Aemilius to all those present, asking them to pray for him and for his work with street children.

Interviewed by the “Osservatore Romano” on the following day, Father Aemilius said that Archbishop Bergoglio's ability to integrate different values and channel them in a single direction had struck him deeply: “Experiencing this ability of his was decisive in my life," he said, "He taught me to take the best that is in each individual, however different he or she may be from others, and to put it to good use for the good of all".

The Uruguayan priest chosen by Pope Francis will accompany his current Personal Secretary, Father Yoannis Lahzi Gaid.
Full Text Source: Vatican News. va

Novena to St. Thomas Aquinas - Patron of Students - Powerful Prayers to Share!

Novena prayer 

St. Thomas Aquinas,
patron of students and Catholic schools,
I thank God for the gifts
of light and knowledge he bestowed on you,
which you used to build up the Church in love.
I thank God, too,
for the wealth and richness of theological teaching
you left in your writings.
Not only were you a great teacher,
you lived a life of virtue
and you made holiness the desire of your heart.
If I cannot imitate you
in the brilliance of your academic pursuits,
I can follow you in the humility and charity which marked your life.
As St. Paul said,
charity is the greatest gift,
and it is open to all.
Pray for me that I might grow in holiness and charity.
Pray also for Catholic schools,
and for all students.
In particular, please obtain the favor I ask during this novena.

[Make you request here...]


First Day

St. Thomas, called by God
"Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me;
and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me" (Mt 10:37).

St. Thomas, as a young man
you became convinced that God was calling you to religious life.
Although your family was opposed to it,
you were determined to follow God's call.
Even when your brothers kidnapped you
and forced you to remain a prisoner in your own house,
you did not give up but waited patiently for God's hour.
St. Thomas, pray for all young people
who are considering their vocation in life.
Help them to be open to the call of God.
Inspire them to make choices
motivated by love for God
and an unselfish love for other people.
Whatever their state in life,
help them to see their chosen path
as a call to service.
May all married couples, single persons,
priests and religious build up the Church
through lives of unselfish devotion and love.

[Recite the novena prayer.]

Second Day

St. Thomas, lover of purity

"For God did not call us to impurity but in holiness" (1 Thes 4:7).

St. Thomas, you had a great esteem for the virtue of purity.
When your family tried to deter you
from entering the Dominicans by sending a woman to lead you into sin,
you resisted the temptation
and determined to consecrate your chastity to God forever.

Today we are immersed in a culture
that degrades the gift of human sexuality.
Human persons are viewed as objects of pleasure
and their human dignity is devalued.
As a consequence, society tolerates abortion,
disregarding human life at the very outset.
Children suffer abuse
and families are damaged by infidelity.

Pray that our society may once again
value the virtue of chastity.
Pray that those in the media will work
to promote a Christian view of marriage and family life.
May the plague of pornography in all its forms be eliminated.
May Christian moral standards act as a leaven in society
and bring about a greater respect for human life.

[Recite the novena prayer.]

Third Day

St. Thomas, example of humility

"All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted" (Mt 23:12).

St. Thomas, when you were a young student
some of your classmen called you the "dumb ox."
Although you were more intelligent than all of them,
you bore their insults patiently without retaliating.
You were endowed with a keen mind
but recognized that God is the source of all gifts.
You humbly acknowledged your dependence on God,
and begged him to enlighten you
so that you would act only for his glory.

St. Thomas, pray for me
that I too learn to act out of humility
and never from the empty desire
for esteem in the sight of others.
Help me to seek only God's glory
and to act with a right intention.
May I seek to humble myself now,
so that in heaven
I will shine like the stars for all eternity.

[Recite the novena prayer.]

Fourth Day

St. Thomas, devoted to truth

"But speaking the truth in love, we must grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ" (Eph 4:15).

St. Thomas, you devoted your life
to seeking the truth and explaining it to others.
You dedicated your mind to God,
and used it to probe the Word of God more deeply.
Your gifts as a theologian and philosopher
make you stand out as one of the greatest doctors of the Church.
In your discussions,
you made truth your primary aim,
while treating respectfully anyone who differed with you.

Obtain for me too a great love of truth.
Help me to ponder God's word
so as to draw from it the light I need
to nourish myself spiritually.
Keep me firmly rooted in the truth,
and never let me be swayed by false teachings.
I pray also for those who are lost in darkness;
please bring them into the light of truth.

[Recite the novena prayer.]

Fifth Day

St. Thomas, afire with love for the Blessed Sacrament

"So Jesus said to them, 'Very truly, I tell you,
unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood,
you have no life in you"' (Jn 6:53).

St. Thomas, you had a great love for Jesus in the Holy Eucharist
and spent many hours in adoration be fore the Blessed Sacrament.
You once said that you learned more from prayer
before the tabernacle than from many hours of study.
The Church owes you a debt of gratitude
for the beautiful Eucharistic hymns you wrote
at the request of Pope Urban IV,
for the newly-established feast of Corpus Christi.

Pray that I too might be inflamed
with an ardent love for the Holy Eucharist.
Help me to always esteem and reverence this wonderful sacrament.
Pray for me that I might always participate devoutly in Mass,
receive Holy Communion with great fervor,
and often visit Jesus in the tabernacle.
Through contact with the Eucharistic Lord,
may my heart overflow with love for God and for my neighbor.

[Recite the novena prayer.]

Sixth Day

St. Thomas, filled with charity

"Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude.
It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;
it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth" (1 Cor 1 3 :4-6).

St. Thomas, you were noted during your life
for the charity you showed to others.
During debates at the university,
you did not ridicule those who argued with you
but treated them with respect and love.
You showed consideration for the needs of other people.
Help me also to be more deeply rooted
in love of God and neighbor,
keeping in mind Jesus' words,
"By this everyone will know that you are my disciples,
if you have love for one another" (Jn 13:35).
Help me to practice this same charity
in a concrete way that does not stop at words,
but is shown with sacrifice.
May it begin first of all in my family,
and then radiate to everyone I meet.

[Recite the novena prayer.]

Seventh Day

St. Thomas, defender of the Church

"...the Church of the living God, the pillar and bulwark of the truth" (1 Tim 3:15).

St. Thomas, from your youth you learned to love the Church,
your spiritual home.
In your teaching, you sought to explain
and defend the doctrine of the Church,
making it known through your writings.
You understood that true wisdom
means to let oneself be instructed by the Church,
for Jesus guaranteed that the Holy Spirit
would always be with the Church,
to lead it into all truth.
At the end of your life you said,
"I have taught and written much...
according to my faith in Christ
and in the holy Roman Church,
to whose judgment I submit all my teaching."
Intercede for the Church today,
that it might grow stronger
and more spiritually fruitful in the world.
Raise up holy priests,
religious and laity,
that they may all be the salt of the earth
and the light of the world.
Bless the pope in his efforts to guide the Church,
witnessing to the power of the Gospel
to renew the face of the earth.
May all theologians work to explore the richness of Catholic teaching
so as to show forth its truth and benefit the faithful.
Pray for missionaries as they work to spread the Gospel.
May the whole Church be renewed by the power of the Spirit
to more effectively witness to Christ in the world today.

[Recite the novena prayer.]

Eighth Day

St. Thomas, teacher of prayer

"Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with thanksgiving" (Col 4:2).

St. Thomas, you knew that prayer is the source of wisdom
and you spent long hours in conversation with God.
Prayer became your very life.
Whenever you pondered over a problem in theology,
you turned to prayer to seek God's enlightenment.
Now in heaven you see God face to face.
Pray for me, too,
that I might become a person of profound prayer.
Obtain for me the grace
that I might always pray with humility,
confidence and perseverance.
Help me to grow more and more in the spirit of prayer,
so that my whole life may become a prayer.
May I always seek the face of the living God.

[Recite the novena prayer.]

Ninth Day

St. Thomas, patron of students

"For in every way you have been enriched in him, in speech and knowledge of every kind" (1 Cor 1:5).

St. Thomas, God called you
to spend most of your life in academic pursuits,
first as a student, and then as a professor of theology.
In your work as a teacher,
you desired to help your students apply
what they learned to their lives,
in order to grow in holiness.
You realized that knowledge is meant
to draw people closer to God.
In your teaching you sought to communicate the truth,
desiring to help your students become better Christians.

Pray for all students.
Pray for those who may have difficulty in their studies,
as well as for those who can study with ease.
Pray that they may all be open to the truth,
and always seek to better under stand it.
May they grow in knowledge
so as to know God better
and to be able to serve
their brothers and sisters as the Lord desires.
St. Thomas, pray especially for theologians,
that in their studies and research
they may come to a deeper knowledge of revealed doctrine
in keeping with the mind of the Church.
May their lives reflect the holiness of the Word of God
which they seek to more fully under stand.

[Recite the novena prayer.] Shared from Catholic Doors Ministry 

#BreakingNews Earthquake in Turkey Kills 41 people and Injures over 1,000 with Great Damage

An earthquake hit the eastern province of Elaziğ killing at least 41 people and injuring over 1,000. Aid and rescue are trying to provide basic supplies, food and clothing which are needed.
Deutshe Welle reports that the lack of preparations had been fatal. According to Turkish authorities, the official death toll has now risen to 41 and more than 1,000 people have been hospitalized. Ibrahim Altan, the general director of the Turkish Red Crescent, says it is thanks to the quick response of Turkish emergency services that more people didn't die. "I got scared when I heard how severe the earthquake was," he says. "Thank God we have seen limited destruction only," adding that "emergency services are rapidly conducting search and rescue missions, the teams are highly coordinated." So far, authorities have rescued 45 people alive.
The quake hit the eastern province of Elaziğ, 550 km east of the capital Ankara. Less than 24 hours after the disaster, a Caritas Anatolia representative reached the area and began looking into the situation between the cities of Malatya and Elaziğ.

The government, the Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD), and the Red Cross are already active in Elaziğ where the damage is greatest.

Aid is pouring in from various municipalities and associations, but a lot of food and aid of different kind is reportedly being wasted.

The representative of the Catholic charity visited some of the villages around Elaziğ, in particular Pütürge and Doğanyol, which are 1,950 metres above sea level.

Here, aid was distributed and tents set up in front undamaged houses, but in some areas very little aid has arrived.

Food, blankets, stoves and winter clothes are needed in the current emergency situation; diapers and special food are needed for children.

An estimate US$ 3,000 are needed for food and travel to bring aid. Other villages between Malatya and Elaziğ are expected to be in similar conditions.
Edited from AsiaNewsIT and DW

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Tuesday January 28, 20 - #Eucharist

Memorial of Saint Thomas Aquinas, Priest and Doctor of the Church

Lectionary: 318

Reading 12 SM 6:12B-15, 17-19

David went to bring up the ark of God from the house of Obed-edom
into the City of David amid festivities.
As soon as the bearers of the ark of the LORD had advanced six steps,
he sacrificed an ox and a fatling.
Then David, girt with a linen apron,
came dancing before the LORD with abandon,
as he and all the house of Israel were bringing up the ark of the LORD
with shouts of joy and to the sound of the horn.
The ark of the LORD was brought in and set in its place
within the tent David had pitched for it.
Then David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD.
When he finished making these offerings,
he blessed the people in the name of the LORD of hosts.
He then distributed among all the people,
to each man and each woman in the entire multitude of Israel,
a loaf of bread, a cut of roast meat, and a raisin cake.
With this, all the people left for their homes.

Responsorial Psalm24:7, 8, 9, 10

R.    (8)  Who is this king of glory?  It is the Lord!
Lift up, O gates, your lintels;
reach up, you ancient portals,
that the king of glory may come in!
R.    Who is this king of glory?  It is the Lord!
Who is this king of glory?
The LORD, strong and mighty,
the LORD, mighty in battle.
R.    Who is this king of glory?  It is the Lord!
Lift up, O gates, your lintels;
reach up, you ancient portals,
that the king of glory may come in!
R.    Who is this king of glory?  It is the Lord!
Who is this king of glory?
The LORD of hosts; he is the king of glory.
R.    Who is this king of glory?  It is the Lord!

AlleluiaMT 11:25

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth;
you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the Kingdom.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMK 3:31-35

The mother of Jesus and his brothers arrived at the house.
Standing outside, they sent word to Jesus and called him.
A crowd seated around him told him,
“Your mother and your brothers and your sisters
are outside asking for you.”
But he said to them in reply,
“Who are my mother and my brothers?”
And looking around at those seated in the circle he said,
“Here are my mother and my brothers.
For whoever does the will of God
is my brother and sister and mother.”

Monday, January 27, 2020

Saint January 28 : St. Thomas Aquinas the Dominican Patron of Catholic Universities, Colleges, and schools

1225, Roccasecca, in Lazio, Italy
7 March 1274, Fossanuova Abbey, Italy
July 18, 1323, Avignon, France
Major Shrine:
Church of the Jacobins, Toulouse, France
Patron of:
Catholic universities, colleges, and schools
Today, January 28, we celebrate the feast of Saint Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274), Doctor of the Church, patron saint of universities and students, and the greatest teacher of the medieval Catholic Church. Alternately referred to as the Angelic Doctor and the Universal Doctor, the teachings of Saint Thomas Aquinas greatly influenced not only Church doctrine, but schools of theological and philosophical thought. Candidates for the priesthood are instructed to model themselves after this holy man, and Pope Benedict XV declared that his teachings were the teachings of the Church, herself. By universal consent, this holy man is the preeminent spokesman of the Catholic tradition of reason and divine revelation.
Thomas was born in Aquino, Italy (the name “Aquinas” is not his surname, but translates as “of Aquino”), the son of the Count of Aquino. At the ago of five years old, his father placed him in the care of the monks at the Benedictine Monastery at Monte Casino. He was immediately observed to excel at the scholastic life, and his teachers were astounded not only by his eagerness to learn and aptitude for difficult concepts, but also by the virtuous manner in which he lived his life. As he grew older, he was sent to Naples to continue his studies, where he first encountered the philosophy of Aristotle.
His father, who had hoped he would enter the Benedictine Order upon reaching the age of consent was dismayed to learn that Thomas had other plans. Renouncing all his worldly ties and possessions, Thomas entered the Dominican Order in Naples. His family, for their part, did all in their power to convince him otherwise, first kidnapping him, and later sending him all manners of temptation (including “impure women”) to lead him astray. However, Thomas remained constant in his pursuits of the Lord, and maintained perfect chastity throughout his life (which is why he is referred to as the “Angelic Doctor.”)
Upon ordination, Thomas left Naples and traveled to Paris and Cologne, Germany, where he studied under the tutelage of Albert the Great. Here he was nicknamed the "dumb ox" because of his silent ways and huge size, but his brilliance as a student was evident in his writings. While he pursued his philosophical and theological writings, Thomas held two tenures as professor at the University of Paris. During that time, he resided at the court of Pope Urban IV, under whose direction he combated all forms of heresy and adversaries of the Church. Thomas similarly directed the Dominican schools at Rome and Viterbo, traveling between them as frequently as needed. He received his doctorate at the age of 31.
While a gifted preacher, the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas (which fill twenty volumes) are considered his greatest contribution to the Catholic Church. His writings reconcile the unity of faith and reason, of those things revealed by God, and those things discovered through natural human knowledge. The breadth and depth of his theory encompass the entirety of the natural order, as a cherished and divine gift granted to us by God. Pope John Paul II affirmed the importance of this tradition, saying: "The whole living tradition of the Church teaches us this: faith seeks understanding, and understanding seeks faith. Both the need to understand and the need to believe are deeply rooted in man's heart. It is for this reason that the Church herself was the point of departure for the creation of universities.” Similarly, Pope Benedict XVI asserted, “With his charism as a philosopher and theologian, he [Thomas] offered an effective model of harmony between reason and faith, dimensions of the human spirit that are completely fulfilled in the encounter and dialogue with one another. Both the light of reason and the light of faith come from God, he [Thomas] argued; hence there can be no contradiction between them.” Prior to his death, Saint Thomas Aquinas undertook to deal with the entirety of Catholic theology. His most acclaimed work, the Summa Theologiae, although incomplete summarizes the theological underpinnings of our faith in a scientific and rational manner. Saint Thomas ceased writing this work following a supernatural encounter with the Lord while celebrating Mass on December 6, 1273. During Mass, he is said to have heard the voice of Jesus asking him what he most desired. Thomas is said to have replied, “Only you, Lord,” following which he experienced something which he never revealed. Following that experience, he stopped writing, explaining, “I cannot go on… All I have written seems to me like so much straw compared to what I have seen and what has been revealed to me.” Saint Thomas fell ill (likely from overwork) at the Cistercian monastery of Fossa Nuova, and died peacefully while providing commentary on the Song of Songs. His remains were placed in the Church of the Jacobins in Toulouse in 1369.
Prayer for Guidance
O creator past all telling, you have appointed from the treasures of your wisdom the hierarchies of angels, disposing them in wondrous order above the bright heavens, and have so beautifully set out all parts of the universe. You we call the true fount of wisdom and the noble origin of all things. Be pleased to shed on the darkness of mind in which I was born, The twofold beam of your light and warmth to dispel my ignorance and sin. You make eloquent the tongues of children. Then instruct my speech and touch my lips with graciousness. Make me keen to understand, quick to learn, able to remember; make me delicate to interpret and ready to speak. Guide my going in and going forward, lead home my going forth. You are true God and true man, and live for ever and ever. Amen.
Text shared from 365 Rosaries Blog

Novena to St. Thomas Aquinas - Patron of Students - Powerful Prayers to Share!

Free Christian Movie : St. Paul the Apostle

Paul persecutes Christians before being converted and assuming leadership of the Church and struggle against violent opposition to the teachings of Christ and their own personal conflicts.

#BreakingNews 36 Civilians Killed by Terrorist Group in Burkina Faso, West Africa - Bishops call for Dialogue

36 Civilians were killed by a "terrorist group" in Burkina Faso, West Africa, the government has said in a statement.  Burkina Faso held two days of national mourning Wednesday.
 Pope Francis and the Catholic Bishops of Burkina Faso have called for the promotion of interreligious dialogue in an attempt to protect the people and find solutions to the violence.
 The government in Ouagadougou released a statement saying "These repeated attacks on innocent civilians call for real cooperation between defence and security forces."
Armed militants forced their way into a market the village of Alamou in Sanmatenga province on Tuesday, January 21, 2020 and attacked people there before burning the construction to the ground, according to a government statement. There has been a rise in violence in the West African country that has killed hundreds and forced nearly a million people from their homes. 

Islamist groups with links to al Qaeda and the so-called "Islamic State" have carried out a number of attacks against civilian and military targets in Burkina Faso in recent months, including an onslaught on a Canadian mining convoy in November that killed at least 37 people. "These repeated attacks on innocent civilians call for real cooperation between defense and security forces," the government said. President Roch Marc Kabore responded to the onslaught by calling for two days of national mourning.
Edited from combined reports by Deutsche Welle/AllAfrica.com and Vaticannews.va

RIP Fr. Casimir Krzyzanowski, MIC - Death of Devout Polish Marian Priest at age 97

Because of failing health, he spent the last year of his life being cared for in the Nursing Home of the Little Sisters of the Poor across the street from the Marian Scholasticate. Being struck with many physical aliments in the last couple of years he bore them patiently and with the submission to God’s will. He died on his 97th Birthday on January 17, 2020.
During  the last moments of Fr. Krzyzanowski’s earthly life Fr. Casimir asked the Marians to say or sing something in Polish so Fr. Gabriel put St. John Paul II praying the Rosary in Polish on YouTube and then tears started coming down Fr. Casimir’s face for a few minutes. After about two decades of the rosary, Fr. Krzyzanowski peacefully departed for the House of the Father precisely at 6:54 PM…
Father Casimir Krzyzanowski will be remembered for his regular religious observance, and for his deep piety to our Blessed Mother and to our holy Father Founder. For many years together with his brother Seweryn, Fr. Casimir would annually obtain food and clothing to help needy families and orphans in his native Poland. 
May he rest in Peace and may our Founder, Saint Stanislaus – whose sanctity – Fr. Casimir promoted throughout his entire religious life, intercede for him before the throne of our merciful Lord. Edited from Source: https://padrimariani.org/

Biography: Fr. Casimir Krzyzanowski, MIC

I was born (actually) on Dec. 17, 1922 (but according to my baptismal certificate: on Jan. 17, 1923) in Lublin, Poland, the son of Adam Krzyzanowski (died in 1942) and of Stanislawa nee Kozlowska (died in 1988). At my baptism, I was given three names: Kazimierz, Jan and Stanislaw. I have one brother (Seweryn, two years older, married, and living in Poland).

After a few years spent in Lubartow, our family returned in 1930 to Lublin and we took residence in a house (bought by my parents) at Rynek Street, 12. In 1938, having completed secondary education, I graduated from the private Vetter High School in Lublin. Before the outbreak of the Second World War, I completed my first year at the J. Zamoyski Lyceum (college) in Lublin, where I specialized in physics and mathematics.

Because of the limited possibilities of higher studies in Lublin under the German occupation, in 1940 I moved with my brother to Warsaw, where after a year of preparatory course, for two years I pursued the electro-technical studies at the Wawelberg Higher School of Machine Construction and Electro-Technology. Having graduated from it with a technician's degree, in the year 1943/1944 I studied at the Electro-technical Faculty of the State Higher Technical School (formerly called Polytechnic University) in Warsaw.

Since the spring of 1943, I was being trained in the underground Polish Army, and I took part as a soldier in the Warsaw Rising against the Germans, from its beginning on Aug. 1, 1944 until its capitulation on Oct. 3, 1944. As a prisoner of war, I was kept first in a transitory camp in Germany, and in November of 1944 I was transferred to a regular prison of war camp (Stalag XVIII A) in Wolfsberg, Austria. Due to a lung disease (pleurisy), I was moved to a camp hospital in January of 1945.

After the end of the war and the capitulation of Germany, in May of 1945, I was transported to Italy, to a hospital of the II Polish Corps of Gen. Anders under the British command. Having recovered from my disease, on Aug. 4, 1945 I began my studies at the Military Officer College of the II Polish Corps in Matera, Italy, from which I graduated on March 18, 1946 with the rank of Platoon Commander Officer Cadet.

In May of the same year I started studies in Alessano, Italy, at the Lyceum of the II Polish Corps, majoring in Mathematics and Physics (second year), in order to obtain the maturity diploma that would make it possible for me to resume my university studies abroad (since I did not plan to return to Poland as long as it was under the Communist regime). I was transferred to England for the demobilization purposes in Aug. 15, 1946. I was stationed in Cannon Hall Camp near Barnsley, where in the October of the same year I graduated from the said Lyceum with the maturity diploma. Having been demobilized from the military service, in November of 1946 I was accepted for the second year of the Electro-Technical studies at what was later called Polish University College in London. I took up residence at St. Stanislaus Hospice in London. I also became a member of the Polish Catholic University Association "Veritas."

My vocation to the religious life and the priesthood came to me unexpectedly on Sept. 8, 1947, when I was ready to start the third year of my university studies in London. The Congregation of Marians was the only religious institute that was more known to me at that time (I had gotten some information about it from my friend in London). Hence, when my spiritual director assured me of the authenticity of my vocation, I wrote to the Superior General of the Marians in Rome. On April 9, 1948 I was accepted into the Congregation and assigned to the American Province of St. Stanislaus Kostka.

While waiting for my three-year student visa to the United States, I went to a Jesuit college for late vocations in Isleworth, Middlesex, England, where I stayed until July 12, 1949, mostly brushing up my Latin. I obtained my student visa on July 6, 1949. Soon after I was on my way by ship from England to the U.S.

On July 19, 1949, I arrived in New York, then proceeded to Stockbridge, Mass., where at that time the novitiate was situated. I started my novitiate on Aug. 15, 1949, and a year later I professed my first religious vows. Then I was transferred to Washington, D.C., and for two years (1950-1952), I studied philosophy at the Catholic University of America, at the end receiving a Bachelor of Arts.

Then, I had an interruption in my priestly studies, because I became ill (tuberculosis of the bone). I had to stay for more than six months in the Lakeville State Sanatorium in Middleboro, Mass. In the meantime, my student visa expired and my stay in the U.S. was prolonged unlawfully. Therefore, while I was still in the sanatorium, one day I was formally arrested, but left where I was. The problem soon was solved, because at the request of my superiors, the congressman from the state of Massachusetts interceded for me, and I was granted by the Congress the permanent stay in the U.S. I went back to our scholasticate in Washington where I studied theology — first at the Carmelite Seminary (1953-54) and then at the Catholic University (1954-58). On June 9, 1956, I was ordained priest at the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception of the B.V.M.

In 1958 I was granted the Licentiate in Theology (S.Th.L.), and in the same year I was sent to Rome, where I stayed at our General House and I continued my theological studies at the Dominican University "Angelicum." At their conclusion, I wrote (in Latin) and defended the dissertation entitled: Stanislaus a Jesu Maria Papczynski, O.Imm.Conc. (1631-1701): Magister Studii Perfectionis, and in 1963 I obtained the degree of Doctor of Sacred Theology (S.Th.D.).

In the summer of 1961 I returned to the U.S., and on Sept. 11, 1961 I became a naturalized citizen of the U.S. On this occasion, I "Americanized" my baptismal names "Kazimierz Jan" into "Casimir John," because I believed that I was obliged to do so.

In 1963, instead of letting me go back to my Province, I was retained by Fr. General and his Council in Rome and appointed to the office of Assistant Postulator General of the Congregation (1963-1973). In this capacity I helped in conducting the Beatification Process of our Father Founder, and particularly researching the required documentation (also in Portugal), and then writing and composing the so-called Positio on the life and virtues of Fr. Papczynski, and on the fame of his sanctity (1964-73; 1976-77), under the direction of an official of the Sacred Congregation for the Causes of Saints. The Positio was published in Rome in 1977 and subjected to the evaluation by the historians and theologians — experts of the Holy See (later I had to answer their objections in the so-called Informatio, consequently annexed to the Positio). On the basis of these elaborations, the Holy See in 1992 issued the decree acknowledging the heroic virtues of Fr. Papczynski.

While working on the Beatification Cause of the Venerable Servant of God Fr. Stanislaus, I wrote explanatory texts to a series of 89 pictures that illustrate his life (they were painted in Poland). Thus, a book-album was composed and published in 1966 in London with the financial aid of our Province under the title: Pod sztandarem Niepokalanej, which in 1969 appeared in its English translation, published in Stockbridge under the title: Under the Banner of Mary Immaculate.

In the years 1963-69 I served as Local Secretary of the Roman House. In 1968 I was appointed a member of the Committee for the elaboration of the new edition of our Constitutions/Directory. In 1969 and 1970 for several weeks I offered pastoral assistance in our parish in Germany. Almost from the beginning during my stay in Rome until my return to the Province in 2005, I was chaplain in one or the other neighboring convents of religious Sisters.

In May of 1973, the 300th anniversary of the foundation of our Congregation was celebrated at the Catholic University of Lublin. On this occasion I delivered a paper on the rise and the development of our Congregation during the life of our Founder. In in 1975 this paper was published in Rome as a part of the book entitled:
Marianie 1673-1973.

In the first anniversary issue of the Marian Helpers Bulletin (now called Marian Helper magazine), my article appeared on the foundation and history of our Congregation entitled: "It All Started Three Hundred Years Ago," while for the second anniversary issue of the Bulletin I wrote an article presenting the Venerable Servant of God Fr. Casimir Wyszynski O.Imm.Conc. entitled "A Marian True To His Name."

In September of 1973, I returned to the U.S., where I was engaged in pastoral work, I had lectures on the history and spirituality of our Congregation for the novices, and I offered assistance in our houses of Brookeville, Md., and in Washington, DC. In the years 1975-78 I was Superior of the provincial house in Stockbridge, Mass.

Then I was called back to Rome, where I served the Congregation in various capacities: as Secretary General (1978-87, 1993-99), as III General Councilor (1981-93), as Procurator General (1987-99), as Assistant to the Postulator General (1989-92), and since 1987 as a member of the Historical Commission of the Marians (later called Institute of History and Spirituality of the Marians). Beginning in 1994, almost every year I make a special trip from Rome to the U.S. to give lectures on the history and spirituality of our Congregation to our novices.

In the years 1996-2001, I prepared the critical edition of the ascetical, historical and rhetorical writings of Fr. Papczynski written in Latin. On the basis of this edition, these writings began to be translated in the modern languages used in the Congregation, and I was given the task to verify the Polish translations (I did it until 2006).

In 2001-2002, I prepared an Italian edition of the Album Mortuorum for our Roman House. In the years 2001-2003 I worked on the updating and publication of our Constitutions and Directory, and in 2002-2003 I revised and verified their Italian and English translation (this last one in cooperation with Fr. Mark Garrow, MIC, who was Superior General at that time). In 2004 I translated the Marian Ritual into English. In 2004-2005, I verified and corrected (with the help of our Marian Censor) the English translation of Templum Dei Mysticum (Mystical Temple of God) that was then published by our Province. In 1999, I underwent a serious stomach operation in a Roman clinic.

On April 20, 2005, on the order of my Provincial (approved reluctantly by my Roman Superiors), I returned to my American Province and was assigned to the Washington House, mainly because it gave me an easy access to the Veterans Medical Center where, as a veteran, I receive a solicitous and gratuitous medical care. Also, it is easier now for me to have classes with our novices.

Presently my main work consists in translating Fr. Papczynski's Inspectio Cordis (An Insight with the eyes of Heart), 476 pages, into English (with Fr. Larry Dunn, verifying the correctness of my English). Also, occasionally I continue to help our General Curia and the Polish Province in various literary projects, requiring the knowledge of Latin, Italian, Polish and English, and also of the life and writings of Fr. Papczynski. Presently, especially I offer assistance to those projects that are connected with and provoked by the forthcoming beatification our Father Founder.

Full Text Biography Source: Marian.org

4 French Members of NGO of SOS Christians Missing in Iraq since January 20 - Please Pray

ASIA/IRAQ - Monday, 27 January 2020

Baghdad (Agenzia Fides) - Four men working in Iraq for SOS Chretiens d'Orient (SOS Eastern Christians), a French Christian charity, have been missing since Monday 20 January in Baghdad. The missing workers were in Baghdad to renew their visas and register the association with Iraqi authorities. For security reasons and to protect the men’s safety, their names have not been made public. In a press release issued on social networks on Friday 24 January, SOS Chrétiens d’Orient reported that it had lost contact with its four employees since the previous Tuesday, and that it had reported the disappearance of the four to French and Iraqi authorities.
The French NGO stresses that the four missing employees are experienced people, all in good health and with a good knowledge of the crisis areas in which they operate, and who have always carried out their initiatives in full compliance with safety standards continuously updated to respond to new emerging pitfalls in that region.
SOS Chrétiens d’Orient has its headquarters in Paris, and presents itself as an organization dedicated to supporting the Christian communities of the East, also through the financing of social and educational projects. Currently, the organization is present with "permanent missions" operating in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Egypt. The founders of the association, formed in 2013, are Charles de Meyer (who was in the past assistant to French right-wing MP Jacques Bompard) and Benjamin Blanchard, former collaborator of the Front National Marie-Christine Arnautu MEP. The director of the Organization's initiatives, François-Xavier Gicquel, was also an old Front National militant. According to data reported in 2019 by Le Figaro étudiant, since the beginning of its activities the Association has sent about 1500 employees and volunteers to carry out their projects in the Middle East. In February 2017, the organization was recognized as a "national defense partner" by the French Ministry of Defense. (GV) (Agenzia Fides, 27/1/2020)

BREAKING Death Toll from Corona Virus at 81 People and 2,761 Infections and it has Spread to 10 Countries

Coronavirus, Beijing confirms 81 dead and 2,761 infections
Almost half of the infections occurred in the province of Hubei, the epicenter of the epidemic.  Hong Kong, where there are eight cases, has imposed a ban on access to those who have visited the area in the past 14 days.  Thailand is among the Asian countries with the highest number of infected people.  The virus has already reached Oceania, America and Europe.

Wuhan (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The updated toll of the pulmonary epidemic that broke out in Wuhan (Hubei province) is 81 dead and 2,761 cases of infection and is now spreading to various regions of China, Asia and the world.  The Beijing government announced this morning that it has extended the holidays for the lunar New Year: the largest companies in the country have closed or ordered staff to work from home, in an attempt to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The total number of confirmed cases in China has increased by around 30%.  Almost half of the infections occurred in the Hubei province.  Health officials say the death toll from the flu-like virus in the province has risen to 76 from 56;  five other deaths are reported elsewhere in China: the southern province of the island of Hainan reported the first death today.

Hong Kong, where there are eight cases of contagion, has imposed a ban on access to those who have visited Hubei in the past 14 days.  The ban does not cover residents.  A limited number of cases have been confirmed in more than 10 countries, linked to people from Wuhan, but no deaths are reported outside of China.

Among the Asian territories with the highest number of infected people are Thailand (eight cases);  Macau (five);  Japan, Malaysia and Singapore (four);  South Korea and Taiwan (three);  Vietnam (two);  Nepal (one).  But the virus has already reached Oceania (five cases of infection in Australia), America (as many in the United States) and Europe (three in France).
Full Text Source: Asia News IT

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Monday, January 27, 2020 - #Eucharist

Monday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 317
Reading 12 SM 5:1-7, 10
All the tribes of Israel came to David in Hebron and said:
“Here we are, your bone and your flesh.
In days past, when Saul was our king,
it was you who led the children of Israel out and brought them back.
And the LORD said to you, ‘You shall shepherd my people Israel
and shall be commander of Israel.’”
When all the elders of Israel came to David in Hebron,
King David made an agreement with them there before the LORD,
and they anointed him king of Israel.
David was thirty years old when he became king,
and he reigned for forty years:
seven years and six months in Hebron over Judah,
and thirty-three years in Jerusalem
over all Israel and Judah.
Then the king and his men set out for Jerusalem
against the Jebusites who inhabited the region.
David was told, “You cannot enter here:
the blind and the lame will drive you away!”
which was their way of saying, “David cannot enter here.”
But David did take the stronghold of Zion, which is the City of David.
David grew steadily more powerful,
for the LORD of hosts was with him.

Responsorial Psalm89:20, 21-22, 25-26

R.    (25a)  My faithfulness and my mercy shall be with him.
Once you spoke in a vision,
and to your faithful ones you said:
“On a champion I have placed a crown;
over the people I have set a youth.”
R.    My faithfulness and my mercy shall be with him.
“I have found David, my servant;
with my holy oil I have anointed him,
That my hand may be always with him,
and that my arm may make him strong.”
R.    My faithfulness and my mercy shall be with him.
“My faithfulness and my mercy shall be with him,
and through my name shall his horn be exalted.
I will set his hand upon the sea,
his right hand upon the rivers.”
R.    My faithfulness and my mercy shall be with him.

Alleluia2 TM 1:10

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Our Savior Jesus Christ has destroyed death
and brought life to light through the Gospel.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMK 3:22-30

The scribes who had come from Jerusalem said of Jesus,
“He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and
“By the prince of demons he drives out demons.”
Summoning them, he began to speak to them in parables,
“How can Satan drive out Satan?
If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.
And if a house is divided against itself,
that house will not be able to stand.
And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided,
he cannot stand;
that is the end of him.
But no one can enter a strong man’s house to plunder his property
unless he first ties up the strong man.
Then he can plunder his house.
Amen, I say to you, all sins and all blasphemies
that people utter will be forgiven them.
But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit
will never have forgiveness,
but is guilty of an everlasting sin.”
For they had said, “He has an unclean spirit.”

Sunday, January 26, 2020

#BreakingNews RIP Kobe Bryant - Catholic Basketball Star and Daughter Gianna, age 13, Killed in Helicopter Crash

Kobe Bryant, 41, the basketball star, who spent 20 years with the Lakers, was killed on Sunday, January 26, 2020 when the helicopter he was traveling in crashed amid foggy conditions and burst into flames. His daughter Gianna, 13, was also on board,  nine people were on the copter — a pilot and eight passengers. Kobe and his family were practicing Catholics in an article he said:
I’m Catholic, I grew up Catholic, my kids are Catholic. It was noted that he was seen at Mass on Sunday before going on the helicopter. (see biography below)
Kobe is survived by his wife Vanessa. Together, they have four daughters -- Gianna, Natalia and Bianca and their newborn Capri. Kobe and Vanessa got married in 2001 after meeting in 1999.

 LA Times reports that Christina Mauser, Kobe’s top assistant coach on the travel basketball team, was also killed in the crash.“My kids and I are devastated,” her husband, Matt Mauser, wrote on Facebook. “We lost our beautiful wife and mom today in a helicopter crash.” Also, baseball coach John Altobelli was among the others who died in the crash. Altobelli’s wife, Keri Altobelli, and their 13-year-old daughter, Alyssa, who played on the club team with Bryant’s daughter, were also among the victims, according to his family.

Short Biography of Kobe: 
Kobe Bean Bryant (born August 23, 1978) is an American professional basketball player who has retired from the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He entered the NBA from high school, and has played for the Lakers his entire career. He is the son of former NBA player Joe Bryant.  He has won the All-Star MVP Award four times (2002, 2007, 2009, and 2011). In 2003, Bryant was accused of sexual assault in Colorado, but the charges were eventually dropped, and a civil suit was settled out of court. Bryant admitted that he had an adulterous encounter, but denied the rape allegations. He did apologize publicly: Although I truly believe this encounter between us was consensual, I recognize now that she did not and does not view this incident the same way I did. 
At the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympics, he won gold medals as a member of the U.S. national team. Bryant was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as the youngest of three children and the only son of Joe Bryant and Pamela Cox Bryant. Bryant was raised Roman Catholic. When Bryant was six, his father left the NBA and moved his family to Rieti in Italy to play professional basketball. Bryant learned to speak fluent Italian. Bryant started playing basketball when he was 3 years old. When Joe Bryant retired from playing basketball in 1991, the Bryant family moved back to the United States. Kobe married Vanessa Laine in 2001. The Bryants' first child, a daughter named Natalia Diamante Bryant, was born in 2003.  Their second daughter, Gianna Maria-Onore Bryant, was born in 2006. In early December 2016, Vanessa gave birth to their third daughter, Bianca. The Bryants fourth daughter, Capri was born in June 2019. Kobe Bryant is Catholic, and turned to a priest when caught due to his sinful relationship.

 In a article from GQ Kobe states:

 “I started to consider the mortality of what I was doing,” he says. At the time, he was 24. “What’s important? What’s not important? What does it mean when everybody loves you, and then everybody hates your guts for something they think you did? So that’s when I decided that—if people were going to like me or not like me—it was going to be for who I actually was. To hell with all that plain vanilla shit, just to get endorsement deals. Those are superficial, anyway. I don’t enjoy doing them, anyway. I’ll just show people who I actually am…. The [loss of the] endorsements were really the least of my concerns. Was I afraid of going to jail? Yes. It was twenty-five to life, man. I was terrified. The one thing that really helped me during that process—I’m Catholic, I grew up Catholic, my kids are Catholic—was talking to a priest. It was actually kind of funny: He looks at me and says, ‘Did you do it?’ And I say, ‘Of course not.’ Then he asks, ‘Do you have a good lawyer?’ And I’m like, ‘Uh, yeah, he’s phenomenal.’ So then he just said, ‘Let it go. Move on. God’s not going to give you anything you can’t handle, and it’s in his hands now. This is something you can’t control. So let it go.’ And that was the turning point.” (All Images Shared from Google Images) (Information from GQ and Wikipedia)

Saint January 27 : St. Angela Merici the Patron of Sickness, Handicapped, Loss of parents

21 March 1474, Desenzano del Garda, Province of Brescia, Lombardy, Italy
27 January 1540, Brescia, Lombardy, Italy
May 24, 1807, Rome by Pope Pius VII
Major Shrine:
The Merician Centre (including the now subterranean Church of St Afra, Brescia, Lombardy, Italy)
Patron of:
sickness, handicapped people, loss of parents
Saint Mary of the Angels (1474 - 1540) Also known as: Angela of Merici, Angela de Marici Angela Merici was born on March 21, 1474 at Desenzano, Lake Garda, Italy. She made a vow of virginity before she was ten years old and persuaded her older sister to do the same. Her parents died when she was only ten years old. Together, with her older sister, she moved to the nearby town of Salo, to live with her uncle. She and her only sister, who was three years older, loved each other very much. But soon the sister of Angela followed her parents by a sudden death. Her sister's tragic death left Angela disconsolate because it occurred before her sister could receive the last sacraments of the Catholic Church. Angela lost herself in prayer and good works. Although she had great faith, she could not help but wonder if her sister was safe in heaven. One day during harvest Angela was alone in the fields when she experienced a life-changing vision: the heaven’s opened and angels and young women came toward her singing a melody, surrounded by light. One of the young girl's was Angela’s sister and she spoke, telling her that God wanted her to establish a company of consecrated virgins. Since then she has been known as a Saint, thanks to her spiritual life and her capacity to understand and help people. In 1516, on invitation, Angela moved to Brescia, for a consolatory mission in the house of Caterina Patengola, who had lost her husband and two children. Here she met Giovan Antonio Romano. Soon a group of people formed around her, united by the same desire for good. In 1524 Angela embarked on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land and a year later she went to Rome to the Pope for the Jubilee. On November 25, 1535, on Saint Catherine’s day, Angela and 28 young women formed the Order of Ursulines in honor of St. Ursula in a small house near the Church of St. Afra in Bresci. In 1536, Merici laid down the rules of the Ursuline Order, clarifying her plan to restore the family and the supremacy of Christianity through the education of girls. In 1537 she was elected superior of the company by unanimous vote. Before her death she dictated her Testament and Souvenirs, which contain her counsels to her nuns; they insist on interest in the individual, gentleness, and the efficacy of persuasion over force. In 1580, Charles Borromeo, Bishop of Milan, inspired by the work of the Ursulines in Brescia, encouraged the foundation of Ursuline houses in all the dioceses of Northern Italy. Charles also encouraged the Ursulines to live together in community rather than in their own homes. Angela died on the 27th January 1540 at Brescia and was buried in the ancient church of Saint Afra (now Saint Angela’s sanctuary), where she still rests. She left 150 spiritual daughters. On June 9, 1544, Pope Paul III approved the new institute with the Bull: “Regimini Universalis Ecclesiae”. She is beatified on April 30, 1768 by Pope Clement XIII and canonized on May 24, 1807 by Pope Pius VII. In 1962 St. Angela Merici was proclaimed the principal patron of Desenzano by a decree of the Sacred Congregation of Rites. In 1861, Pius IX extended her veneration to the universal Church. Saint Angela's body is incorrupt. After Angela's death the Company of Saint Ursula spread rapidly. Ursuline communities were established quickly in France, Germany, Belgium, Holland, Switzerland, Canada and the United States. Today, thousands of Ursuline Sisters work to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ on six continents. Text shared from MaryPages - Image Google