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Cross to Saint
This is a Catholic Blog on The Cross of Christ, Mary, and the Saints

Archive for September, 2011

Saint Michael the Archangel

Feast of the archangels -September 29

Saint Michael Pray for Us

Saint Michael is one of the seven archangels. He is known as “the prince” over all of the other angels. His name means “who is like God?In his great humility Michael would never consider himself like God but, battled Satan and his evil, arrogant army who refused to serve God.

Saint Michael is recorded in the bible in the book of the prophet Daniel as the protector of Israel and the Israelites during their Babylonian exile. In this book of the bible, Michael is also promised to be the protector of God’s faithful ones at the end of time.

In the book of Revelation John, the evangelist, sees the vision of Michael defending the world in the final battle against Satan and his evil army. Clad in a warrior’s battle gear, Michael defeats the evil army of Satan and casts them from heaven.

We recognize the great power that God has granted to Saint Michael the archangel in the promise that he will:

  • fight against Satan in our earthly battles,
  • defend us in our final hour before death against the temptations of Satan,
  • protect the Church until the end of time, and
  • accompany our souls as we depart from earth to our final judgment

 Saint Michael the archangel is the patron saint of: soldiers, police officers, and paratroopers. We should invoke the intercession of Saint Michael often in prayer and display our belief and trust in his role as our protector as we wear a Saint Michael medal.

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St. Vincent De Paul

Feast Day Sept. 27

Saint Vincent De Paul

Lived 1581-1660
Patron Saint of charities

St. Vincent De Paul was a French priest who was very active in serving the poor. He founded the Congregation of the Mission called the Vincentians which is a society of missionary priests. His works were not limited to his homeland of France. He sent missionary priests to Rome, Ireland, Scotland, Poland, and Turkey, He also helped found the Daughters of Charity with Louise de Marillac. Among his works to assist the poor included founding a hospice, a shelter for the poor, and a hospital. He begged for alms and received funds from many benefactors to assist in serving the poor.

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Saints Cosmas and Damian

 

Feast Day today – September 26

Saints Cosmas and Damian

Martyrs

Saint Cosmas and Saint Damian were twin brothers who lived during the late 3rd century. They were physicians who practiced in the region of Cilicia (now part of Turkey) and later in a province of Rome. They were known and loved for their charitable medical practice. They accepted no payment for their medical services. Miraculous healings were reported during their lifetime. One of the famous accounts of a miraculous healing involved grafting a leg from an Ethiopian man who had recently died to replace an ulcerated leg of their patient. Many paintings illustrate this famous healing.  illuminations.

They were tortured, but did not die as they were hung on a cross and arrows shot into their bodies. They were finally killed by beheading. They suffered this martyrdom when they refused to renounce their Christian faith.

Saints Cosmas and Damian are regarded as the patrons of physicians and surgeons. We hear their names invoked in the Canon of the Mass.

 

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Prayer to St. Joseph for Employment

 

Saint Joseph Pray For Us


During this time of anxiety over the high unemployment rate many of us find ourselves lost and afraid as we face an uncertain future without a job to support ourselves and our loved ones. Let us turn our hearts in prayer to the foster father of Jesus, to whom God the Father entrusted the care of His only Son.

“Dear Saint Joseph, you were yourself once faced with the responsibility of providing the necessities of life for Jesus and Mary. Look down with fatherly compassion upon me in my anxiety over my present inability to support my family. Please help me to find gainful employment very soon, so that this heavy burden of concern will be lifted from my heart and that I am soon able to provide for those whom God has entrusted to my care. Help us to guard against bitterness and discouragement, so that we may emerge from this trial spiritually enriched and with even greater blessings from God.   Amen.”

Remember St. Joseph often as you invoke the name of the dear foster father of Jesus and display a beautiful St. Joseph saint medal. He is the patron saint of workers, families, and a happy death. St. Joseph pray for us.

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History of Saturday Devotion to Mary

 

Devoting Saturday to the devotion of Mary is not new. It is a custom which originated from the belief that Jesus appeared to His mother Mary on the Saturday after His death. This first appearance of Jesus to the Blessed Mother Mary was an act of honor and respect for His mother who was always devoted and unwavering in her faith in Jesus from the Annunciation through the moments she spent at the foot of the cross of Christ. Mary responded with her fiat (yes) to be the mother of God at the Annunciation and “yes” to be the mother of mankind in response to the request by her divine Son at the foot of the Cross. Her great fiat to God’s will is certainly a virtue which we try to emulate and therefore recognize as part of our Marian devotion.

We see this devotion in practice within the liturgy of the Mass in which prayers during the Mass are directed toward Mary as the Church invokes her, the mother of grace, as our intercessor. Early evidence of Saturday liturgical prayer devoted to Mary has been associated with the contributions of a Benedictine monk in the 8th century, Alcuin. He wrote 6 models for the liturgy, one for each day of the week with 2 of them devoted to Mary.

 The role and importance of devotion to Mary in the lives of Catholics was addressed by Pope Paul VI in 1974 in his encyclical “Marialis Cultus” – Apostolic Exhortation for the Right Ordering and Development of Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. The pope reaffirmed in this document the belief of the Church that the devotion to Mary can not be separated from our worship during the liturgy of the Mass which is the central worship of Jesus Christ. He pointed to Mary as the model who exemplifies the most perfect characteristics and virtues of the Church in faith, charity and perfect union with Christ. Mary is therefore, both an example and teacher of divine worship and perfect spiritual life. Christians recognized the role of Mary as our spiritual model from the beginning of Christianity. Pope Paul VI further cited St. Ambrose in the 4th century who recognized the significance of Mary in the life of the Church when he prayed: “May the heart of Mary be in each Christian to proclaim the greatness of the Lord; may her spirit be in everyone to exult in God”.

As faithful Catholics we are encouraged to rediscover the wonderful devotions to Mary which have been practiced over the 2000 years since she stood at the foot of the Cross. As Mary intercedes in bringing us so many graces through the merits of her Son, it is only appropriate that we honor her in her role as the mother of Our Lord and Savior. Let us continue to recognize the role of our dear Blessed Mother in bringing us to her Son and offer some special act of devotion especially on Saturday. We can show our love, respect, and gratitude to Mary in prayer and by wearing and displaying a Miraculous Medal in her honor.

 

 

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Saint Padre Pio Feast Day

 

St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina

 Saint Padre Pio

 

St Pio of Pietrelcina, baptized Francesco Forgione, was lovingly known as Padre Pio. He lived from  May 25, 1887 – September 23, 1968. He was a Capuchin Franciscan priest from the region of Campania in Italy.

St. Padre Pio is most known for his stigmata which he had for 50 years. He received the stigmata while praying before the Crucifix in an old church. This of course, is the same history of St. Francis of Assisi, his order’s founder, who was the first recorded Christian to receive the stigmata. He also received the stigmata while praying before the Cross of Christ in a church at San Damiano. The stigmata are the bleeding wounds of Christ on the hands and feet.

He led many souls to holiness through reconciliation. It was reported that St. Pio had true insight into a person’s soul and was able to identify their sins and assist the penitent to identify sins they had forgotten or were unwilling to confess. As one of the Church’s greatest spiritual directors his guidance included 5 rules for spiritual growth:

1. Weekly confession

2. Daily Communion

3. Spiritual Reading

4. Meditation

5. Examination of conscience

St. Pio lived with the cross of Christ and The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass as the center of his life. He believed that the love of God is inseparable from suffering and that suffering all things for the sake of God is the way for the soul to reach God. This explanation of the value of suffering with Christ is a recurring theme with all saints and held by the great Blessed John Paul II as well. The life of St. Pio was an example of living out our call to be conformed to the image of Jesus and His Gospel.Padre Pio was also blessed with the vision of souls in purgatory who would appear to him and request his prayers. It is a wonderful gift to recognize this great saint and invoke his prayers as we wear and display a St Pio Saint Medal. We should remember daily to pray for all souls to assist them on their journey to heaven.

 

 

 

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