Author: Benedict

Again The Virgin Mary Statue in New Mexico “Weeps”

Again The Virgin Mary Statue in New Mexico “Weeps”

A bronze statue of the Virgin Mary in the small parish of Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Hobbs, New Mexico made famous for reportedly crying is once again miraculously weeping.

Three months ago, a statue of the Virgin Mary made headlines for crying miraculous tears resembling olive oil and smelling faintly of chrism – with no earthly explanation behind its origin. The statute wept three times and an investigation was launched into the occurrence to determine if it was miraculous in origin.

Devotees say the bronze Our Lady of Guadalupe statue was seen once again shedding tears for a fourth time in the early morning last Saturday. Many gathered to witness the statue crying, and the rosary was prayed in it’s presence.

The Catholic Diocese of Las Cruces was charged with the investigation, with Bishop Oscar Cantú directing diocese personnel to examine the statue and have the tears analyzed. Last week, Bishop Cantú gave an update on the investigation just a few days it wept for the fourth time.

“The statue is made of bronze. As the hollow interior was examined, nothing was found on the interior that could have created liquid. There were cobwebs in the hollow interior.”

According to Cantú, tests done on the tears collected from the statue discovered they are chemically identical to Sacred Chrism.

“The liquid samples collected from the statue were sent to a lab for chemical analysis. Two distinct methods of analysis indicate the same outcome: the liquid is olive oil with a scented mixture, chemically, to the Sacred Chrism.”

Cantú said the first phase of the investigation has ruled out natural causes, finding no evidence to suggest someone planted the tears on the statue. The next phase involves discerning if the cause is supernatural:

“If the cause of the phenomenon is supernatural, we must discern if it is from God or from the devil. I remind you that the Church believes in the existence of fallen angels, who at times try to trick us …. The discernment of whether it is a phenomenon from God or from the evil one is a longer process. The devil can sometimes imitate holy things in order to confuse us. So, we must be prudent and vigilant …. Thus, the investigation is not yet complete so to make a definitive pronouncement.”

12 Deathbed Regrets You Still Have Time And Should Avoid

12 Deathbed Regrets You Still Have Time And Should Avoid

Use these as inspiration to make changes in your life while you can.

No one says on his or her deathbed, “Oh, if only I had spent more time at work!” Regret comes in relation to “what I did and what I did not do” throughout one’s life.

A Dominican friar from Colombia, Fr. Nelson Medina, OP, has assembled a list of the most common regrets he’s heard expressed by people he has accompanied at the end of their lives.

Why not use this list as an opportunity to do some soul-searching and commit to living a little differently? Then, all you have to do is pray and ask for the grace to live in this way so you can avoid having any of these regrets at the hour of your own death.

In this gallery of images, you will find the most common regrets heard on people’s deathbeds.

1. For the times I gave a bad example and people followed it.

2. For my indifference to the suffering of my neighbour.

3. For not offering words of praise, recognition, and encouragement to those who deserved and needed them.

4. For quickly taking credit for my successes, but blaming the circumstances for my failures.

5. For not respecting the innocence of a person, or for hindering the dreams of another.

6. For having spent money on things I did not need and never used.

7. For the times I took too long to forgive others and didn’t make a big enough effort to do it faster.

8. For taking advantage of those who loved me, simply for selfish motives.

9. For not guiding well those whom I should have educated better before it was too late

10. For not visiting or spending more time with my neighbour, because I didn’t find him sufficiently interesting, educated, or useful.

11. For wasting so much time on useless things — time which is lost forever

12. For enjoying flattery, even when I knew it was false.

13. For complaining more often than I gave thanks.

14. For the coarse, vulgar, or rude words that came out of my mouth.

15. For participating in conversations that mocked God, the Faith, or the Church.

16. For the many times I ran from the cross.

17. For the promises, I didn’t fulfil.

18. For the moments I could’ve and should’ve prayed more and, above all, loved more.

19. For ignoring Jesus.

20. For hurting my neighbour in one way or another.

21. For not loving enough – because I should’ve loved God and my neighbour much more

Do You Know These 4 Saints of Impossible Causes?

Do You Know These 4 Saints of Impossible Causes?

There are instances in every person’s life when it seems that a problem is insurmountable or a cross is unbearable. In these cases, pray to the patron saints of impossible causes: St. Rita of Cascia, St. Jude Thaddeus, St. Philomena and St. Gregory of Neocaesarea.

Read their life stories below.

These 4 saints are known especially for their prowess in interceding for impossible, hopeless, and lost causes.

1. ST. RITA OF CASCIA

St. Rita was born in 1381 in Roccaporena, Italy. She lived a very difficult life on earth, but she never let it destroy her faith.

Although she had a deep wish to enter religious life, her parents arranged her marriage at a young age to a cruel and unfaithful man. Because of Rita’s prayers, he finally experienced a conversion after almost 20 years of unhappy marriage, only to be murdered by an enemy soon after his conversion. Her two sons became ill and died following their father’s death, leaving Rita without family.

She hoped again to enter the religious life, but was denied entrance to the Augustinian convent many times before finally being accepted. Upon entry, Rita was asked to tend to a dead piece of vine as an act of obedience. She watered the stick obediently, and it inexplicably yielded grapes. The plant still grows at the convent, and its leaves are distributed to those seeking miraculous healing.St. Rita statue

For the rest of her life until her death in 1457, Rita experienced illness and an ugly, open wound on her forehead that repulsed those around her. Like the other calamities in her life, she accepted this situation with grace, viewing her wound as a physical participation in Jesus’ suffering from His crown of thorns.

Although her life was filled with seemingly impossible circumstances and causes for despair, St. Rita never lost her faith weakened in her resolve to love God.

Her feast day is May 22. Countless miracles have been attributed to her intercession.

2. ST. JUDE THADDEUS

Not much is known of St. Jude‘s life, although he is perhaps the most popular patron of impossible causes.

St. Jude was one of Jesus’ Twelve Apostles and preached the Gospel with great passion, often in the most difficult circumstances. He is believed to have been martyred for his faith while preaching to pagans in Persia.

He is often depicted with a flame above his head, representing his presence at Pentecost, a medallion with an image of Christ’St. Jude statues face around his neck, symbolizing his relationship with the Lord, and a staff, indicative of his role in leading people to the Truth.

He is the patron of impossible causes because the scriptural Letter of St. Jude, which he authored, urges Christians to persevere in difficult times. Also, St. Bridget of Sweden was directed by Our Lord to turn to St. Jude with great faith and confidence. In a vision, Christ told St. Bridget, “In accordance with his surname, Thaddeus, the amiable or loving, he will show himself most willing to give help.” He is the patron of the impossible because Our Lord identified him as a saint ready and willing to assist us in our trials.

His feast day is October 28, and novenas are often prayed for his intercession.

3. ST. PHILOMENA

St. Philomena, whose name means “Daughter of Light,” is one of the earliest known Christian martyrs. Her tomb was discovered in ancient Roman catacombs in 1802.

Very little is known of her life on earth, except that she died a martyr for her faith at the young age of 13 or 14. Of noble birth with Christian convert parents, Philomena dedicated her virginity to Christ. When she refused to marry the Emperor Diocletian, she was cruelly tortured in many ways for over a month. She was scourged, thrown into a river with an anchor around her neck, and shot through with arrows. Miraculously surviving all these attempts on her life, she was finally beheaded. Despite the tortures, she did not waver in her love for Christ and her vow to Him. The miracles attributed to her intercession St. Philomena statuewere so numerous that she was canonized based solely on these miracles and her death as a martyr. She became known as “The Wonder Worker.”

She is represented by a lily for purity, a crown and arrows for martyrdom, and an anchor. The anchor, found inscribed on her tomb, one of her instruments of torture, was a popular early Christian symbol of hope.

Her feast day is celebrated on August 11th. Besides impossible causes, she is also the patroness of babies, orphans, and youth.

4. ST. GREGORY OF THAUMATURGUS

St. Gregory Neocaesarea, also known as St. Gregory Thaumaturgus (the Wonderworker) was born in Asia Minor around the year 213. Although raised as a pagan, at age 14 he was deeply influenced by a good teacher, and thus converted to Christianity with his brother. At the age of 40 he became a bishop in Caesarea, and served the Church in this role until his death 30 years later. According to ancient records, there were only 17 Christians in Caesarea when he first became a bishop. Many people were converted by his words and by his miracles which showed that the power of God was with him. When he died, there were only 17 pagans left in all of Caesarea.

According to St. Basil the Great, St. Gregory Thaumaturgus (the Wonderworker) is comparable to Moses, the prophets, and the Twelve Apostles. St. Gregory of Nyssa says Gregory Thaumaturgus experienced a vision of Our Lady, one of the first such recorded visions.

St. Gregory of Neocaesarea’s feast day is November 17th.

These 4 saints are known especially for their prowess in interceding for impossible, hopeless, and lost causes.

God often permits trials in our lives so that we can learn to rely only on Him. To encourage our love for His saints and to give us holy models of heroic virtue who persevered through suffering, He also permits prayers to be answered through their intercession.

If any of these 4 saints of impossible causes have been powerful intercessors for difficult circumstances in your own life, please comment below with your story.

 

Source: catholiccompany.com

St. John Paul II Said This Was The Happiest Day of His Life. Here’s why

St. John Paul II Said This Was The Happiest Day of His Life. Here’s why

The happiest day of St. John Paul II’s life according to him was the day he canonized St. Faustina, a nun from his homeland; Poland.

St. Faustina was born Helena Kowalska to a poor but devout Polish family in 1905. At the age of 20, with very little education, and having been rejected from several other convents because of her poverty and lack of education, Helen entered the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy. There, she took the name Sr. Faustina and spent time in convents in both Poland and Lithuania.

Throughout her life, Faustina reported having visions of Jesus and conversations with him, of which she wrote in her diary, later published as The Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska: Divine Mercy in My Soul. Jesus also asked Sr. Faustina to have an image painted of his Divine Mercy, with red and white rays issuing from his heart, and to spread devotion to the Divine Mercy novena.

The devotion to Divine Mercy began to spread throughout Poland, even before her death on October 5, 1938.

Although Sr. Faustina’s life overlapped with John Paul II (then Karol Wojtyla) for several years in Poland, the knowledge of St. Faustina and the revelations bestowed on her coming from Jesus became known to Pope John Paul II early in 1940. It was at the time when he was studying for the priesthood secretly, in a seminary in Krakow during World War II.

The Vatican placed a ban on spreading the devotion in the 1950s, due to an inaccurate Italian translation of the Diary of Divine Mercy and other unresolved issues, which was lifted just six months before Cardinal Karol Wojtyla became Pope John Paul II.

On the first Sunday of Advent, November 30, 1980, Pope John Paul published his second encyclical “Rich in Mercy” (Dives in Misericordia) in dedication to Divine Mercy.

Throughout his papacy, John Paul II often write or speak about the necessity of pleading for God’s Divine Mercy for the whole world. On April 19, 1993, he beatified Sr. Faustina, and in his homily he praised the way she drew many people to the merciful heart of Christ.

He said:

“It is truly marvelous how her devotion to the merciful Jesus is spreading in our contemporary world and gaining so many human hearts! This is doubtlessly a sign of the times — a sign of our twentieth century. The balance of this century, which is now ending, in addition to the advances which have often surpassed those of preceding eras, presents a deep restlessness and fear of the future. Where, if not in the Divine Mercy, can the world find refuge and the light of hope? Believers understand that perfectly”

On April 30, 2000, Pope John Paul II canonized St. Faustina in what he was widely reported as saying was “the happiest day of my life.”

In his homily on the day of canonization, Pope John II said: “Today my joy is truly great in presenting the life and witness of Sr Faustina Kowalska to the whole Church as a gift of God for our time. By divine Providence, the life of this humble daughter of Poland was completely linked with the history of the 20th century, the century we have just left behind. In fact, it was between the First and Second World Wars that Christ entrusted his message of mercy to her. Those who remember, who were witnesses and participants in the events of those years and the horrible sufferings they caused for millions of people, know well how necessary was the message of mercy.”

It was also on this day, the Sunday after Easter, that Pope John Paul II instituted the Feast of Divine Mercy, which Jesus had asked for in his messages to Sr. Faustina.

Special graces (similar to indulgence) are granted to souls on this day who receive sacramental confession and communion. Jesus promised that souls who fulfilled these requirements on this day would be returned to their pure, baptismal state, among other graces.

Jesus said to Sr. Faustina of this feast:

“I desire that the Feast of Mercy be a refuge and shelter for all souls, and especially for poor sinners. On that day, the very depths of My tender mercy are open. I pour out a whole ocean of graces upon those souls who approach the fount of My mercy. The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain the complete forgiveness of sins and punishment. On that day all the divine floodgates through which grace flow are opened. Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though its sins be as scarlet.” (Diary 699)