(Photo from Father Lawrence Lew, O.P. - God’s Excessive Love - Used With Permission)
" “The greatest kindness one can render to any man consists in leading him to the truth.” – St. Thomas Aquinas

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Eucharistic Reflection - A Worthy Communion

(Image Source: Wikimedia Commons)
"The first thing required for a worthy Communion is that one recognize, with great humility, that no human efforts will suffice to make this preparation if God does not assist him. As no one can dispose himself for an increase of grace without grace, so no one can prepare for the reception of God but God. Therefore, one should beg Him with humble and burning desires to cleanse and purify the house where He is going to dwell.

To do this as we ought, the first thing required is freedom from mortal sin. The Apostle strongly said that whoever eats the bread or drinks the chalice of the Lord unworthily is guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. In other words, those who approach Communion in the state of mortal sin commits a sin comparable to the sin of those who crucified Christ, because both are sins  against the body and blood of Jesus, although in different ways.

Moreover, what can follow from the union of two different things such as Christ and a sinner, but the corruption of the sinner? Things that are alike are easily joined together, such as water and wine; but things that are contrary, such as fire and water, can never be mixed without the destruction of one. How can the good be mixed with the bad, the humble with the proud, the pure with the unclean? Hence, there must be some kind of likeness effected between Christ and the Christian if the latter is to be united worthily with Him."

(Ven. Louis of Granada, O.P. from Summa of the Christian Life)

Monday, November 12, 2018

Monday Musings - But I Do Know!


[Oh, how so many of us take our Lord for granted by ignoring His Presence here among us. In doing so we offend Him Who is the Source of Love and, at the same time, deprive ourselves needlessly of His love, grace and support. 
May the following quotation from Stirring Slumbering Souls - 250 Eucharistic Reflections open our eyes, minds and souls to our neglect]:

 
"I recall the strange and touching story of Saint Alexis. When he was young he left home and then, because God inspired him to do so, came back to the house of his parents in Rome dressed up like a poor and unknown beggar. There he lived in some miserable old corner of the house for seventeen years; and his parents never knew that it was he.



But when he died they found out. It seems he left a note or something telling them what he had done in penance for his sins, because God wanted him to. How that mother wept when she found out that the beggar was her son. She had missed him so much and had so longed to see him. In agony, she cried out: ‘0 Alexis, my son! My son Alexis! Had I only known it was you! How I would have loved you and enjoyed your company! Now, alas! it is too late.’



This is a sad story. But I am afraid that if I do not appreciate my Eucharistic Savior here on earth, where He is hidden away in  the poor  tabernacle, where  He is in my very midst and I do not seem to know Him, the time will come, after my death, when I will cry out, seeing His adorable beauty in the life to come: ‘0 Jesus, if I had only known it was You!  How I would have loved You, Jesus all beautiful!.  How I would have enjoyed Your company! Oh, if I had only known!’



But I do know.



Faith tells me.



And I make so little of it…

(The Way to God - Father Winfrid Herbst S.D.S.)

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Pondering Tidbits of Truth - November 8, 2018



 

Pondering Tidbits of Truth is my simple and inadequate way of providing nuggets of spiritual wisdom for you to chew on from time to time.


 St. John Vianney

 "Are you there [at Mass] with the same dispositions as Our Lady on Calvary, realizing that you are in the presence of God Himself and are present at the enactment of that very same sacrifice?” 





St. Catherine of Siena 

 "It is not enough for eternal life to sweep the house clean of deadly sin. One must fill it with virtue that is grounded in love, and not merely in fear.”

(From The Dialogue)



 St. Vincent de Paul


 “When once we have placed ourselves totally in the hands of God, we have no cause to fear misfortune; for if any should come to us, He will know how to make it turn to our good by ways which we do not know now, but which, one day, we shall know.” 


(From A Year With the Saints - A Virtue For every Day of the Year)

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Worth Revisiting - Don't Be Part of the Resistance

Thank you Allison Gingras at Reconciled To You  and Elizabeth Riordan at Theology Is A Verb  for  hosting Catholic bloggers at Worth Revisiting. It is a privilege for us to share our work with you and your readers.

 

This is my contribution:

Don't Be Part of the Resistance

(Photo©Michael Seagriff)
(Originally posted on 9/3/18)

Foolish are we who resist the graces and promptings of our loving Creator and Lord:

"It takes infinite power for God to create the universe out of nothing. But it takes even greater power to make saints out of sinners. For the nothingness out of which God created the universe did not resist Him; but sinners do."

(Peter Kreeft from Christianity for Modern Pagans - Pascal's Pensees)

Eucharistic Reflection - The Reverence Our Lord Deserves

"After having received the Sacred Host, one should hold it for a moment in the mouth until it is sufficiently damp and can be swallowed more easily. If this is not done, the host may cling to the roof of the mouth and the person is so busy trying to get it loose and swallow it that he has no attention to give to prayer.

(Image Source: Wikimedia Commons)

And one should remain for some time in church, giving thanks to God and speaking to Him who is present in one's breast. Under no circumstances should we, immediately after receiving Communion, congregate with others and spend the time laughing and conversing. This is reprehensible indeed. What bad manners it would be to receive a guest into one's house and then immediately turn your back on him to talk and laugh with others.

Cajetan says that this Sacrament communicates grace to the soul not only at the moment it is received, but as long as the sacred species remain in the body. All the more reason why a man should spend some time in prayer and recollection after Communion. And because the principal faculties by which the Holy Ghost enters us to influence us with His grace are the intellect and will, there is no reason why these two gates should closed at this time, which happens if the mind is diverted to other things. And since this is one of the best fruits of Communion, it is well that a man at this time should use the time to open his soul and receive the fruit of the Sacrament."

(Ven. Louis Granada, O.P. from Summa of the Christian Life)

Monday, November 5, 2018

Monday Musings - Wake Up Slumbering Souls! Wake Up!


[The sad reality of our times is that so very few of us love God as we ought and as He deserves. For the most part, He remains abandoned and ignored as a prisoner in the tabernacles of His Churches. It is my hope that by sharing the Introduction from my most recent book, Stirring Slumbering Souls - 250 Eucharistic Reflections, hearts will be changed and more of us will re-discover and treasure a greater reverence and appreciation for the Gift of our Lord's Presence here among us]:

Have you ever loved someone so much that you could hardly wait to hear from them, speak with them and see them? How often have you looked forward to a visit from someone you deeply love only to have that person not come? How hurt have you felt when you were ignored and your love not returned?

Imagine then how God - Who is Love – Who loves us more than words can describe - feels when we fail to demonstrate our love for Him. He waits, hour after hour in our churches, behind locked tabernacle doors, as a Prisoner of Love, just to hear our voices and see our faces.

Few of us come to be with Him. Many no longer believe He is really and substantially present in the Sacred Eucharist. For all practical purposes, He is abandoned, ignored and disrespected.

This despite the fact that: God the Father on Mount Tabor commanded Peter, James, John and all who would later hear of Jesus’ Transfiguration to listen to His Son.; that Jesus Himself later scolded the same three apostles for their failure to watch one hour with Him; and His Blessed Mother directed the servants at Cana and all who would later learn of this miracle to do whatever
Jesus tells them
.

We have not listened to God the Father. We have not obeyed His Son.  We have not heeded the Blessed Mother.We have taken God for granted. We have failed to love our Lord as we ought and as He deserves.Despite our deafness and disobedience, Jesus never gives up on us. From time to time, He prompts others to “shake things up”. This book attempts to do just that. 

As you read and ponder the quotations in this book, may you recognize, as Father Bruno Shah, O.P. suggested to me, two distinct voices – “the prophet calling Israel back to fidelity AND the sweet Mother inviting us to trust in Her Son.”
**********

Friday, November 2, 2018

Virtual Book Tour - Charlotte's Honor by Ellen Gable


My friend and author, Ellen Gable, hits the ball out of the park once again!


At the conclusion of her last novel, Julia’s Gift, she promised a sequel that would reunite us with Julia’s close friend, Charlotte. The wait for this book seemed interminable. Thankfully, with the publication of Charlotte’s Honor, we need not wait any longer!

We rejoin Charlotte amidst the horrors of war and follow her journey and unlikely relationship with Dr. Paul Kilgallen. Death and the threat of death are their constant companions. Both also face the heavy personal burden of having lost a loved one. As if all these challenges were not enough, Charlotte and Dr. Kilgallen are forced to defend a vile and vicious attack upon their personal and professional reputations. Neither abandons their work to save lives, console the dying, or hope for a better future.

Charlotte volunteers to work in the death ward, intent on having no soldier die alone. She reads to them, sings to them, plays music for them, smiles at them, gazes into their eyes, and holds their hands as they slip from unimaginable pain and suffering into the embrace of an eternal God. 

Dr. Kilgallen is sent to the front lines where his surgical skills are most needed. After he is seriously wounded, the doctor realizes his deep love for Charlotte. Will he ever see her again?

True to form, Gable has put together another great read. The one consistent response that I and most of her readers have had with respect to all of her books is the inability to put them down! The chapters are just the right length, always ending in a fashion that only a fool would not flip the page and continue reading – no matter what personal chores will remain undone or the hour of the day or night. This is the reason why I devour this author’s books. You will do the same.

But I must ask Ellen a pressing question: Will we really have to wait another full year before the final sequel is published? Have a heart!

Other reviewers agree:


Carolyn Astfalk,  - “Charlotte’s Honor includes a little bit of everything: WWI history, sweet romance, and a little mystery/suspense. This page-turning love story (it’s a fast read!) is built on a foundation of faith and above all, the dignity of human life. Charlotte devotes herself to the care of dying soldiers. It is through this calling that Charlotte meets and falls in love with Paul, a skilled surgeon who has closed his heart to the possibility of romance. Expect a little humor amidst the backdrop of wartime brutality and a couple of surprises along the way. Charlotte’s Honor is not only a pleasant romantic escape but edifying as well.”



Erin McCole Cupp - Charlotte's Honor is a delight from start to finish, giving readers a poignant, uplifting look at life and love during the Great War. This latest treat from Ellen Gable had me turning pages, clenching my teeth with the suspense, and then sighing with absolute joy at the satisfying end. Another sweet read--bring on the next in the series!


Theresa Linden - “Set toward the end of the Great War, Charlotte’s Honor allows readers to glimpse ugliness and death, blossoming relationships, and the most challenging experiences a person could face, juxtaposing the brutality of war with the beauty of sacrificial love.


This blog tour does not end with my post. Other gifted authors will share their opinion in the days to follow. Be sure to visit them: 


November 5   Virginia Lieto
November 6   Leslea Wahl
November 7   Theresa Linden
November 8   Sarah Reinhard
November 9   Erin McCole Cupp
November 11  Plot Line and Sinker  Remembrance Day/ Veterans Day post
November 12  Mary Lou Rosien
November 13  Therese Heckenkamp
November 14  E.M. Vidal
November 15 Leticia Velasquez

Who is Ellen Gable? - an award-winning author of nine books, editor, self-publishing book coach, speaker, publisher, NFP teacher, book reviewer and instructor in the Theology of the Body for Teens. Her books have been downloaded nearly 700,000 times on Kindle and some of her books have been translated into Portuguese, Italian, Spanish, and French. The mother of five adult sons, Ellen (originally from New Jersey) now lives with her husband of 36 years, James Hrkach, in Pakenham, Ontario, Canada. 

Where can you learn more about this gifted author? By visiting her at any of these sites:

Blog: Plot Line and Sinker
Full Quiver Publishing 
Amazon Author Page
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