Monday, February 29, 2016

February 27 The Gift of the Knights of Columbus of Bordentown, NJ

Picture of Father Michael Burns, pastor of Saint Mary's Church, Grand Knight Robert Sherier and Yolanda's brother Ferd Lorentangeli were present for the Mass and presentation of the altar cloth.

Yolanda Foley, a good friend of the monastery, a good friend of  Saint Mary's Church in Bordentown and of the Knights of Columbus died recently. In memory of Yolanda the Knights of Columbus gave our Monastery an altar cloth. When we use the altar cloth we will remember  the times she and the Knights cooked a dinner for our Feast of Saint Clare and  Christmas. It is a very appropriate gift for it will call to mind that while she is at the heavenly banquet she is united also with us.

Father Michael Burns, pastor of Saint Mary's Church, Grand Knight Robert Sherier and Yolanda's brother Ferd Lorentangeli were present for the Mass and presentation of the altar cloth.
Marie and all of the Foley family were also present.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Why Are There So Many Different Franciscans?

February 22 @nd Week of Lent and Feast of the Holy See


by achristianpilgrim
(A biblical refection on THE FEAST OF THE SEE OF SAINT PETER THE APOSTLE –  Monday, 22 February 2016) 
First Reading: 1 Peter 5:1-4 
Psalms: Psalm 23:1-6; Gospel Reading: Matthew 16:13-19 
The Scripture Text
So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ as well as a partaker in the glory that is to be revealed. Tend the flock of God that is your charge, not by constraint but willingly, not for shameful gain but eagerly, not as domineering over those in your charge but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd is manifested you will obtain the unfading crown of glory. (1 Peter 5:1-4 RSV) 
Today we celebrate the feast of the Chair of St. Peter, remembering with gratitude Peter’s coming to Rome and establishing the foundation of the Catholic Church. According to tradition, the “Chair of Peter” refers both to the actual chair that Peter sat in as he presided over the Church in Rome, and to the papacy itself, established by and linked to St. Peter.
What then did Peter have to say about the qualities of an ideal pastor? Like Jesus, his Master, he used the image of a shepherd caring for a flock (see John 10:11-18). A good pastor – or shepherd – wants to look after the sheep because he loves them, not for any personal gain. Pastors are called to care for their sheep “not as domineering” over them, but “being examples to the flock” (1 Peter 5:3).
This job description is for all those who lead the Church – not only the Pope, but also bishops, priests, deacons, and laypeople with pastoral responsibility. Jesus is clearly the model for all these roles. He cared for His followers with humble authority. He sought no personal gain. He lived out perfectly everything he taught. Jesus witnessed to the Gospel He preached, even to the point of laying down His own life for us, His sheep.
Vatican II’s “Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (Lumen Gentium)” teaches that “Jesus Christ, the eternal pastor, set up the holy Church by entrusting the apostles with their mission as He Himself had been sent by the Father. He willed that their successors, the bishops namely, should be the shepherds in His Church until the end of the world. In order that the episcopate itself, however, might be one and undivided He put Peter at the head of the other apostles, and in him He set up a lasting and visible source and foundation of the unity both of faith and of communion” (Lumen Gentium, 18).
Today let us pray for this “unity both of faith and of communion” for all who are in positions of authority.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, help our leaders to become increasingly like Jesus, the Good Shepherd, who leads us in humility and faithfulness to You. By their ministries, may a greater unity come to Your Church, that all people would marvel at our love for one another. Amen.
Jakarta, 21 February 2016   
A Christian Pilgrim

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Sunday's Thoughts


by achristianpilgrim
(A biblical reflection on the 2nd SUNDAY OF LENT [YEAR C], 21 February 2016)
Gospel Reading: Luke 9:28-36 
First Reading: Genesis 15:5-12,17-18; Psalms: Psalm 27:1,7-9,13-14; Second Reading: Philippians 3:17-4:1 (Philippians 3:20-4:1)
The Scripture Text
Now about eight days after these saying He took with Him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. And as He as praying, the appearance of His countenance was altered, and His raiment became dazzling white. And behold, two men talked with Him, Moses and Elijah, who appeared in glory and spoke of His departure, which He was to accomplish at Jerusalem. Now Peter and those who were with Him were heavy with sleep but kept awake, and they saw His glory and the two men who stood with Him. And as the  men were parting from Him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is well that we are here; let us make three booths, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah – not knowing what he said. As he said this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My Son, My Chosen; listen to Him!” And when the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silence and told no one in those days anything of what they had seen. (Luke 9:28-36 RSV)
The amazing episode of the transfiguration of Christ in today’s Gospel is somewhat like an important piece of a jigsaw puzzle. It is really just one part of a big picture, and we need all the pieces to make sense out of it. One week before the event Jesus had made the third prediction of His passion to His apostles. He told them that He would go up to Jerusalem and that there He would be mocked, scourged and put to death, but that He would rise on the third day. The prediction of His death was such a shock and a disappointment to the apostles that they scarcely even heard the words about resurrection. They were downcast and dejected.
Jesus realized that His passion would be a difficult experience for His apostles, especially for Peter, James and John, the three apostles who would witness His agony in the garden. And so in the transfiguration Jesus wished to give at least these three apostles a hint of what His future glory through His death would be like. The transfiguration was meant to serve as a bolstering of their faith and hope. This event pointed out the big piece in the puzzle of the life of Christ that would make the whole picture make sense. That one big piece was the resurrection of Christ from the dead. Moreover, the apostles heard the words of God the Father. “This is My Son, My Chosen” (Luke 9:35). These words should have made them realize that God would not abandon His Son in the grave nor allow His Chosen One to undergo the corruption of the dead (see Psalm 16:10). Death for Jesus, accepted in loving obedience to His Father, would mean life and glory.
The full picture of the life of Christ is as important to us as it was to the apostles. The reason is that our lives are meant to follow the pattern of Christ’s life. When Jesus made the prediction of His passion a week before the transfiguration, He added these important words for all of us: “If any man would come after Me, let Him deny Himself and take up His cross daily and follow Me”  (Luke 9:23). To be a Christian means to be like Christ. If He had to suffer, we can expect the same. But if we suffer with Christ in loving obedience, we can also expect to live with Him in happiness forever.
Without Christ, life is the craziest of jigsaw puzzles. All of its frustrations and sorrows simply do not make sense. Without Christ it is absurd to be born into this world, to struggle for survival,, to work long and hard, and to find but a drop of happiness in the ocean of human misery and suffering. Though it is true that many lives are not that dismal, every human being must face the dark, deep mystery of death. Is life meant to be nothing more than a vain struggle for a modicum of joy and satisfaction, a struggle that is terminated after a relatively short span of time by the awesome conclusiveness of death?
Jesus shows us that life is not absurd, only paradoxical. He teaches us that it is in unselfishness that we will find satisfaction, in suffering that we will come to happiness, and in dying that we will come to eternal life. That is what He meant when He said, “Whoever would save his life will lose it; and whoever loses His life for My sake, He will save it” (Luke 9:24). In today’s Gospel, God the Father Himself warns us that we must listen to Jesus. And indeed, not only must we listen to Him, but also follow His example of taking up the cross in loving, willing obedience to God. 
Life is indeed a puzzle, like the jigsaw puzzle we used to play with as kids. The love of Christ is the picture on the box of life of life that tells us how the puzzle is supposed to turn out.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, we realize that we cannot complete the puzzle of our own lives until we have fitted in the most important piece of all, our sharing in the resurrection of Christ. By the power of Your Holy Spirit, help us Lord. Amen. 
Jakarta, 16 February 2016  
A Christian Pilgrim

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Ash Wednesday

The Holy Spirit leads us in Mercy. 


by achristianpilgrim

Prayer: Support us, Lord, as with this Lenten fast we begin our Christian warfare, so that in doing battle against the spirit of evil we may be armed with the weapon of self-denial. We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Note: This prayer is taken from THE DIVINE OFFICE II - LENT AND EASTERTIDE, page 9.
Jakarta, 10 February 2016 [ASH WEDNESDAY]
A Christian Pilgrim

Ash Wednesday tomorrow


Monday, February 8, 2016

Lent is on the Horizon


 on Breaking In The Habit

Don’t Give Up Anything For Lent

by friarcasey
Each year, Catholics give something up for lent. For forty days, we struggle through our penance, going without something we really love. Everyone does it. It's just a part of our faith as Catholics. But why? What is the reason for this devotion? In this latest video, I look at this popular Catholic practice against the backdrop of the early Church and suggest that our focus during lent be on something a little different this year.
This video is also the first segment in a new series entitled, "Catholicism In Focus." Throughout the series, I'll take a deeper look at the things we say and do in our faith all the time, but maybe don’t think much about. Things like, Why the Church loves science, and always has; why we now profess that there actually may be salvation outside of the Church; and why Catholics weddings are so different from Protestant ones.

Don't Give Up Anything For Lent

Saturday, February 6, 2016



How Do You Feel about Lent?

Whether Lent is your favorite season or one that you'd just as soon ignore, you know that it is an important observance in the liturgical calendar. Lent is a time to focus on the deepest mysteries of our faith and try to connect more personally to those spiritual truths.  

A Time of Mercy and Grace

Monday, February 1, 2016

Frederick Douglass February 1, 2016

Frederick Douglass (born Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey, c. February 1818[3] – February 20, 1895) was an African-American social reformer, abolitionist,orator, writer, and statesman. After escaping from slavery, he became a leader of the abolitionist movement, gaining note for his dazzling oratory[4] and incisive antislavery writings. He stood as a living counter-example to slaveholders' arguments that slaves lacked the intellectual capacity to function as independent American citizens.[5][6] Even many Northerners at the time found it hard to believe that such a great orator had once been a slave.[7]
Douglass wrote several autobiographies. He described his experiences as a slave in his 1845 autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, which became a bestseller, and was influential in promoting the cause of abolition, as was his second book, My Bondage and My Freedom (1855). After theCivil War, Douglass remained an active campaigner against slavery and wrote his last autobiography, Life and Times of Frederick Douglass. First published in 1881 and revised in 1892, three years before his death, it covered events during and after the Civil War. Douglass also actively supported women's suffrage, and held several public offices. Without his approval, Douglass became the first African American nominated for Vice President of the United States as the running mate and Vice Presidential nominee of Victoria Woodhull, on the Equal Rights Party ticket.[8]
A firm believer in the equality of all peoples, whether blackfemale, Native American, or recent immigrant, Douglass famously said, "I would unite with anybody to do right and with nobody to do wrong."[9]

Christmas Newsletter 2018