Novena for my sons

Today the Novena to Saint Anne begins at one of my favorite websites, Pray More Novenas. They point out: “St. Anne is the mother of Our Lady and grandmother of Jesus. She is a very powerful intercessor!”

I’m praying for my three sons, that they find happiness and love, as they don’t seem to have luck in finding their life partners. My youngest is the age I was when I married, and neither he nor his older brothers even have steady girlfriends, let alone have married. I’ve succeeded in refraining from interfering or making recommendations or letting the boys know what my preferences may be. I’ve shown much restraint, IMO! 😀

Now, I’m taking this opportunity to pray fervently for my boys’ happiness. Saint Anne, pray for us!

Saint Anne

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In defiance of despair

Praying for the victims of Nepal’s earthquake. So horrifying, and so moving to see the world responding with compassion when disasters like this happen. I’m so grateful for those who are willing and able to rush in and give aid.

 

“A religious man is a person who holds God and man in one thought at one time, at all times, who suffers harm done to others, whose greatest passion is compassion, whose greatest strength is love and defiance of despair.”

Abraham J. Heschel

 

Please keep Nepal in your prayers, and if you can, donate to a relief organization. One I support is United Hatzalah.

 

United Hatzalah

Pope Francis pays tribute to recent Christian martyrs

At morning mass recently, Pope Francis honored the many Christians who are persecuted and killed for their faith around the world, and requested we remember them:

The true history of the Church is that of the saints and the martyrs. In these days how many Stephens there are in the world! Let us think of our brothers whose throats were slit on the beach in Libya; let’s think of the young boy who was burnt alive by his companions because he was a Christian; let us think of those migrants thrown from their boat into the open sea by other migrants because they were Christians; let us think – just the day before yesterday – of those Ethiopians assassinated because they were Christians… and of many others. Many others of whom we do not even know and who are suffering in jails because they are Christians. The Church today is a Church of martyrs: they suffer, they give their lives and we receive the blessing of God for their witness.

God’s Word is always rejected by some. God’s Word is inconvenient when you have a stone heart, when you have a pagan heart, because God’s Word asks you to go ahead trying to satisfy your hunger with the bread which Jesus spoke of. In the history of the Revelation many martyrs have been killed for their faith and loyalty towards God’s Word, God’s Truth.

Pope Francis celebrates Mass at Casa Santa Marta

He also expressed solidarity with the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, after the recent murder by ISIS of 28 Ethiopian Christians, sending a message of condolence to the Patriarch Matthias:

With great distress and sadness I learn of the further shocking violence perpetrated against innocent Christians in Libya. I reach out to you in heartfelt spiritual solidarity to assure you of my closeness in prayer at the continuing martyrdom being so cruelly inflicted on Christians in Africa, the Middle East and some parts of Asia. It makes no difference whether the victims are Catholic, Copt, Orthodox or Protestant, their blood is one and the same in their confession of Christ!

Please remember these martyrs in your prayers.

Novena starts today: Mary, Undoer of Knots

One of my favorite websites begins a novena today — to Mary, Undoer of Knots (one of Pope Francis’ favorites!)

Here is a quote from Irenaeus about Mary loosening our knot of sin:

The knot of Eve’s disobedience was loosed by the obedience of Mary.

For what the virgin Eve had bound fast through unbelief, this did the Virgin Mary set free through faith.

Irenaeus

Mary undoer of knots

I hope you can join in praying this novena!

Divine Mercy Novena Begins Today!

The Divine Mercy Novena begins today, in anticipation of Divine Mercy Sunday April 12. Please join in, if you can!

Divine Mercy prayers

The Divine Mercy prayers have become very dear to me since becoming a Christian, perhaps due to how effective they can be in developing compassion in the one praying. You truly open yourself to being a conduit of God’s mercy praying these beautiful prayers! (And one of the lessons I took out of my first confession: I can certainly benefit from learning a lot more about God’s mercy and forgiveness! 🙂

Click here to sign up to join in praying the Divine Mercy novena.

“Their blood confesses Christ”

“The blood of Christians is a testimony that cries out to be heard. It makes no difference whether they be Catholic, Orthodox or Protestant. They are Christians! Their blood is one and the same. Their blood confesses Christ.

Pope Francis

Prayer for Persecuted Christians

Father Robert Barron requests:

“The news of 21 Coptic Christians mercilessly slaughtered this past weekend reminds us that age of the martyrs is not a time long ago, but right now. Let us pray today for all those suffering religious persecution, and particularly for the persecuted Christians of the Middle East.

“Pope Francis eloquently said that ‘the blood of Christians is a testimony that cries out to be heard. It makes no difference whether they be Catholic, Orthodox or Protestant. They are Christians! Their blood is one and the same. Their blood confesses Christ.’

“Let us join in prayer with our Holy Father and in communion with all Christians who are persecuted, especially those who live and profess their faith under the threat of violence and death.”