A corporal work of mercy.

A corporal work of mercy.
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Monday 26 May 2008

Our Lady of America, Pray for Us

A fascinating and little known but growing awareness of Sister Mary Ephrem (Mildred Neuzil) 1916-2000 and her visions of the Blessed Virgin under the title of Our Lady of America approved by her spiritual director, the late Archbishop Paul Francis Liebold.

Could we consider for a moment what would happen if the American Bishops erected the statue shown below in the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington and the consecrated America to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

From the incredible and powerful history and testimony at the official website.

A movement of great consequence has commenced for a definite response by the United States Catholic Bishops in response to private revelations which long ago received official Church recognition as having occurred in the United States. The revelations included apparitions of Our Lord and St. Joseph as well as St. Gabriel and St. Michael, as well as apparitions of The Blessed Virgin Mary as "Our Lady of America" to Sister Mary Ephrem (Mildred Neuzil), of the Precious Blood Sisters (1933-1979) who was later a Contemplative of the Indwelling Trinity (1979 - until death) . Sister Mary Ephrem, deceased on January 10th, 2000, said she was asked by The Blessed Virgin Mary to draw a picture according to the vision of Our Lady of America and have a statue constructed accordingly and placed after a solemn procession into the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, in Washington, D.C.. The Blessed Virgin Mary wishes to be honored in the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception at Washington D.C. as Our Lady of America. Our Lady says that if this is done, the United States of America would turn back toward morality and the shrine would become a place of "wonders."

Prayer to Our Lady of America, Patroness of our Land Written at the behest of Our Lady, October 5, 1956 by Sister Mary Ephrem

Oh Immaculate Mother, Queen of our country, open our hearts, our homes, and our land to the coming of Jesus, your Divine Son. With Him, reign over us, O heavenly Lady, so pure and so bright with the radiance of Gods light shining in and about you. Be our leader against the powers of evil set upon wresting the world of souls, redeemed at such a great cost by the sufferings of your Son and of yourself, in union with Him, from that same Savior, Who loves us with infinite charity.

We gather about you, O chaste and holy Mother, Virgin Immaculate, Patroness of our beloved Land, determined to fight under your banner of holy purity against the wickedness that would make all the world an abyss of evil, without God and without your loving maternal care.

We consecrate our hearts, our homes, our Land to your Most Pure Heart, O great Queen, that the kingdom of your Son, our Redeemer and our God, may be firmly established in us.

We ask no special sign of you, sweet Mother, for we believe in your great love for us, and we place in you our entire confidence. We promise to honor you by faith, love, and the purity of our lives according to your desire.

Reign over us, then, O Virgin Immaculate, with your Son Jesus Christ. May His Divine Heart and your most chaste Heart be ever enthroned and glorified among us. Use us, your children of America, as your instruments of peace among men and nations. Work your miracle of grace in us, so that we may be a glory to the Blessed Trinity, Who created, redeemed, and sanctifies us.

May your valiant spouse, St. Joseph, with the holy Angels and Saints, assist you and us in "renewing the face of the earth." Then when our work is over, come, Holy Immaculate Mother, and as our Victorious Queen, lead us to the eternal kingdom, where your Son reigns forever as King.

(200 days)

Nihil Obstat: Daniel Pilarczyk, S.T.D.
Imprimatur: +Paul F. Leibold, V.G.
Cincinnati, Jan. 25, 1963

Thursday 22 May 2008

Corpus Christi in Rome: Communion Kneeling and on the Tongue!

Reprinted here from New Catholic at Rorate Caeli from Pope Benedict's homily today:

Adoring the God of Jesus Christ, made bread, broken for love, is the most valid and radical remedy against the idolatries of yesterday and of today. Kneeling in front of the Eucharist is a profession of freedom: who bends to Jesus cannot and must not prostrate before any earthly power, as strong as it may be. We, Christians, kneel only before God, before the Most Holy Sacrament, because we know and believe that in it is present the one true God, who has created the world and has so loved the world to give his only begotten Son.

We prostrate before a God who first inclined himself toward man, as Good Samaritan, to rescue him and give him life, and who knelt before us to cleanse our filthy feet. Adoring the Body of Christ means believing that there, in that piece of Bread, there is truly Christ, who gives true meaning to life, to the immense universe as well as to the smallest creature, to the entire human history as well as to the briefest existence. The adoration is a prayer which prolongs Eucharistic celebration and communion, and in which the soul continues to nourish itself: it is nourished with love, with truth, with peace; it nourished itself with hope, because the One before whom we prostrate does neither judge us, nor humiliates us, but transforms us and makes us free.
Benedict XVI
Homily (Most Holy Body of Christ)
May 22, 2008

Reprinted here from Father Z at What Does The Prayer Really Say:

During the Holy Father’s Corpus Christi Mass, the Holy Father gave Communion only to people kneeling at a kneeler set up before him. This is a very interesting development. The Holy Father has been trying to provoke conversation and a rethinking of many practices, not very good innovations, that have become more or less standard. You can see the kneeler set out.

And the people knelt and received on the tongue. I am sure they were instructed to.

I watched and rewatched the coverage and did not spot anyone receiving in another way from the Holy Father. In so many places it is simply accepted that Mass must be celebrated "facing the people", versus populum, instead of "facing God", ad orientem. So the Holy Father celebrated Holy Mass in the Sistine Chapel, when he was also going to do something very much in his role as Bishop of Rome, when he baptized. He got the conversation going.
Now, in another moment when he is very much Bishop of his diocese, for this great City celebration of the Eucharist, he adminsters Holy Communion on the tongue at a kneeler.
Surely this will start another conversation.
Remember that just the other day the newspaper of the Diocese of Toronto attacked Benedict’s reforms as "backward steps" and the mere suggestion that Communion in the hand wasn’t wonderful.
Remember that His Holiness’s Secretary in the Cong. for Divine Worship, Archbp. Malcolm Ranjith, wrote a preface to a book, Dominus Est: riflessioni di un vescovo dell’Asia Centrale sulla Santa Comunione, printed by the Vatican press which argues for a return to Communion kneeling and on the tongue.
The book is by Bishop Athanasius Schneider of Karaganda, Kazakhstan and it will eventually be in English, I am sure. In the Vatican’s newspaper, Bp. Schneider asked "Wouldn’t it correspond better to the deepest reality and truth about the consecrated bread if even today the faithful would kneel on the ground to receive it, opening their mouths like the prophet receiving the word of God and allowing themselves to be nourished like a child?"
It may be that at the next Mass Pope Benedict will do the same. Maybe he won’t.
But people are now going to be talking.
Piece by piece, he is challenging assumptions.
Brick by brick he is rebuilding what was devastated.
His Marshall Plan for the Church is very much underway.

• • • • • •

Wednesday 14 May 2008

Clarity from Archbishop Prendergast, S.J.

Nearly spilling my coffee on the laptop keyboard this morning when seeing this, I reprint here from LifeSite for your edification...

Archbishop: For the Clergy, Obedience to Church "Requires Preaching About the Moral Evil of Contraception"

By John-Henry Westen

BARRYS BAY, May 13, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Archbishop of the Canadian capital city of Ottawa addressed the convocation of Our Lady Seat of Wisdom Academy in Barrys Bay Ontario last week, leaving attendees awestruck. The speech focused on Pope Paul VI's encyclical Humanae Vitae. Faithful Catholics leaving the event told LifeSiteNews.com "I've been waiting 35 years to hear that from a Canadian bishop."

Archbishop Terrence Prendergast described for the graduates and their families the tumultuous times of the 60's when Humanae Vitae was published (July 25, 1968). He recalled that many expected a "green light" on contraception from the Vatican and were "thunderstruck" when the encyclical was published.

"In the midst of the chaos caused by the sexual revolution and the arrival of the birth control pill, many Catholics felt unsure of the Church's position on artificial contraception," said Archbishop Prendergast. "The Church responded to this urgent need for clear teaching and sound pastoral guidance when Pope Paul VI released his encyclical, Humanae Vitae (Of Human Life) in 1968."

"We celebrate this year the 40th anniversary of that prophetic document," said Prendergast. "Time has shown it to be a gift from Christ to men and women everywhere. The late Edouard Cardinal Gagnon, former President of the Pontifical Council for the Family and one of Canada's great churchmen, called Humanae Vitae 'one of the most important documents in the history of the Church.'"

He explained: "The encyclical gives the Church a deeper understanding into the beauty of married love and responsible parenthood. It offers a clearer understanding of the harm of contraception and the great value of Natural Family Planning (NFP). Further, it challenges married couples, healthcare professionals and clergy to live and teach these profound truths about human sexuality and dignity."

Archbishop Prendergast's approach to the matter was refreshing and new, while he did not shy away from the fact that Catholics must obey Christ on the matter, he pointed out that embracing the teaching had tremendous benefits. "Should Catholics embrace this teaching just because the Church tells them they must? While obedience is a necessary virtue, the benefits of learning and living Humanae Vitae should convince couples of its wisdom," he said. One of the many blessings he listed as coming from couples embracing the teaching was, "Having happier children within stronger families."

Moreover, he said that obedience to Humanae Vitae's teaching fell not only on married couples but also the clergy. "For the clergy," he said, "this same obedience and submission of will and intellect requires preaching about the moral evil of contraception and how it violates God's plan for marriage, human happiness, and the dignity each person."

See related coverage:
Exclusive Interview: Ottawa Archbishop Explains Why Pro-Abortion Politicians are Denied Communion

View Story on LifeSiteNews.com

I'm speechless I say...speechless!