January/February/March 2015                                                                                                                                                                                   Newsletter No. 115

 

 

“On entering the house, [they] found the child with Mary his mother.

They prostrated themselves and did him homage.” (Matthew 2:11)

 

“We cannot be messengers of God's consolation if we do not experience first the joy of being consoled and loved by Him.... When we remain in prayerful silence in His presence, when we meet Him in the Eucharist or in the sacrament of Reconciliation. All this consoles us!” (Pope Francis, December 7, 2014, Angelus address)

 

“To learn from the Heart of Jesus the secret of love for souls and deep knowledge of them: how to touch their hurts without making them smart and to dress their wounds without reopening them; ... to disclose Truth in its entirety and yet make it known according to the degree of light that each soul can bear. The knowledge required for the apostolate can be had only from Jesus Christ, in the Eucharist and in prayer.” (Elisabeth Leseur, Servant of God)

 

The Holy Eucharist, Our Lady, and a Miraculous Conversion

The following true story is recounted by Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

      Just at the turn of the century, there was a woman married in Paris, just a good, ordinary Catholic girl, to an atheist doctor, Dr. Felix Leseur. He attempted to break down the faith of his wife and she reacted and began studying her faith. In 1905, she was taken ill and tossed on a bed of constant pain until August 1914. When she was dying, she said to her husband, “Felix, when I am dead, you will become a Catholic and a Dominican priest.”

      “Elizabeth, you know my sentiments. I’ve sworn hatred of God, I shall live in the hatred and I shall die in it.”

      She repeated her words and passed away. She died in her husband’s arms at the early age of 47.

      Rummaging through her papers, Felix found her will. She wrote:

      “In 1905, I asked almighty God to send me sufficient sufferings to purchase your soul. On the day that I die, the price will have been paid. Greater love than this no woman has than she who lay down her life for her husband.”

Dr. Leseur, the atheist, dismissed her will as the fancies of a pious woman. He decided to write a book against Lourdes. He went down to Lourdes to write against Our Lady.

      However, as he looked up into the face of the statue of Mary, he received the great gift of faith. So total, so complete was it, that he never had to go through the process of juxtaposition and say, “how will I answer this or that difficulty?”

      He saw it all. At once.

      The then reigning pontiff was Benedict XV. Then came World War I. Hearing of the conversion of Dr. Leseur, Pope Benedict XV sent for him. Dr. Leseur went in the company of Fr. Jon Vinnea, orator of Notre Dame. Dr. Leseur recounted his conversion and said that he wanted to become a Dominican priest. Holy Father said, “I forbid you. You must remain in the world and repair the harm which you have done.”

      The Holy Father then talked to Fr. Vinnea and then again to Dr. Leseur and said: “I revoke my decision. Whatever Fr. Vinnea tells you to do, you may do.”

      In the year 1924, during Lent, I, Fulton J. Sheen, made my retreat in the Dominican monastery in Belgium. Four times each day, and 45 minutes in length, I made my retreat under the spiritual guidance of Father Felix Leseur of the Order of Preachers, Catholic Dominican priest, who told me this story.

 

Dr. Felix Leseur later wrote the introduction to Elizabeth’s journal, which was published. He said, “Her Journal shows how Elisabeth endured these terrible afflictions. She comforted those around her, never complained, and looked to the Eucharist, and to prayer and self-sacrifice, for the support she needed.”

 

Archbishop Sheen resolved on the day of his ordination to make a daily Holy Hour before Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. He kept this promise and, as was his desire, passed away while at Eucharistic Adoration. Archbishop Sheen wrote: “The Holy Hour is not a devotion; it is a sharing in the work of redemption  . . . . The only time Our Lord asked the Apostles for anything was the night he went into his agony . . . . As often in the history of the Church since that time, evil was awake, but the disciples were asleep. That is why there came out of His anguished and lonely Heart the sigh: ‘Could you not watch one hour with me?’ Not for an hour of activity did He plead, but for an hour of companionship.” The purpose of the Holy Hour is to encourage deep personal encounter with Christ. The holy and glorious God is constantly inviting us to come to Him, to hold converse with Him, to ask for such things as we need and to experience what a blessing there is in fellowship with Him.

Solemnity, Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God & World Day of Peace—Feast, Jan. 1:

“The world expects those who claim to adore God to be men and women of peace who are capable of living as brothers and sisters, regardless of ethnic, religious, cultural or ideological differences.” (Pope Francis, 11/28/14, address)

Feast of the Most Holy Name of Jesus: Blessed be His holy name!— Feast, Jan. 3:

“Christ is truly the Emmanuel, that is God with us, day and night. He is in our midst. He dwells with us full of grace and truth. He restores morality, nourishes virtue, consoles the afflicted, strengthens the weak.” (Paul VI, Mysterium Fidei)

Solemnity of the Epiphany of Our Lord—Feast, Jan. 4

I saw a Child stand,                                                             I saw a Child

Royally bedecked                                                                                And he gave me the key

In crown, scepter,                                                                                That opens the Heart

And finely wrought white garments,                                Of Him-Who-Is;

And a crimson cloak.                                                           Whom I can please

I saw a Child.                                                                        If I repeat the Child's way:

And suddenly I knew                                                          Grow small,

The secret of all mystery.                                                   Quite small.

And of all immensity!

                                                                                                Then I will be so very big

Eternity opened                                                                    That I will reach

Its sublimity to me.                                                              My Father's hand

I looked into                                                                          And understand

The Face of Ecstasy.                                                           What it means to be

For hidden there                                                                   Absorbed

Before my eyes                                                                     And hidden

Was Love                                                                              In the Lord of Hosts,

Become a Child                                                                     A host myself.

For love of me!

                                                                                                Annihilated

I knelt                                                                                     Unto death to self;

Before His smallness,                                                          A piece of bread

And knew                                                                              To be eaten up

I grew.                                                                                    With zeal and love

There before me                                                                   For Him--

Stood the infant.                                                                  The Child.

Aged a year or two.                                                            

And kneeling made me                                                        (By Catherine de Hueck Doherty, Servant of God,

As small as He.                                                                     Foundress of Madonna House Apostolate)

                                                                                               

Child, Man, and Host!

The secret of all mystery

Began with the Infant,

Grew with the Man,

And reached the infinity

Of sublimity

In the smallest of

All things sublime --

A Host!

St. Br. Andre Bessette, Miracle Worker, Montreal, Canada (1845-1937)—Feast, Jan. 6:

St. Andre spent long nights in adoration of our Eucharistic Lord. From the Blessed Sacrament, he drew strength to intercede for the healing of thousands of people while remaining a simple doorkeeper as a Holy Cross brother.

Feast of the Baptism of the Lord—Feast, Jan. 11:
St. John the Baptist beheld Our Blessed Lord, just as we adore Him in the Sacred Host, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29)

Day of Penance for Violations to the Dignity of the Human Person—Feast, Jan. 22:

“If we can see Christ in the Host, then we can also begin to see Him in the poor, the weak, the terminally ill, and the repulsive and ugly person. We can also see Him in the baby in the womb. This child is hidden behind the ‘veil’ of the womb, much as Christ is hidden behind the ‘veil’ of the Eucharist.” (Fr. Frank Pavone, Director of Priests for Life)

The Presentation of the Lord—Feast, February 2:
“He lays no great burden upon us—a little remembrance of Him from time to time, a little adoration; sometimes to pray for His grace, sometimes to offer Him your sorrows, sometimes to return thanks for the benefits He has bestowed upon you and is still bestowing in the midst of your troubles. He asks you to console yourself with Him as often as you can.” (Br. Lawrence, The Practice of the Presence of God)

Our Lady of Lourdes, France—Feast, February 11:

On Thursday, February 11, 1858, Bernadette Soubirous of Lourdes, France, beheld the first of eighteen apparitions from Our Lady.  Bernadette described Our Lady's appearance, "She was wearing a white tunic cinched at the waist by a blue ribbon which fell down along her side.  Her head was covered by a white veil.  Her feet were bare and each had a shining yellow rose on it.  A white beaded rosary with a gold chain hung from her right arm."

Some highlights of these heavenly visits of Our Lady are as follows:

1. At the first apparition Our Lady encouraged Bernadette to pray the rosary!

2. Our Lady urged Bernadette, and the world, to "Repent!  Pray to God for the conversion of sinners!"

3. Water came forth from the grotto and Our Lady told Bernadette to "...wash at the fountain!"

4. Bernadette was instructed to ask the clergy to build a chapel at the spot, where people could visit her Son in the most Blessed Sacrament!

5. On March 25 Our Lady revealed, "I am the Immaculate Conception!"

Countless pilgrims have visited Lourdes since 1858.  Numerous people seek and receive miraculous physical healings.  Some are healed in the waters of the fountain but most the miraculous healings occur when Jesus is exposed in The Sacred Host within a monstrance and carried among the sick by a priest!

Our Lady has given us the solution: ask her intercession by praying the rosary and visit her Son in the Most Blessed Sacrament for the conversion of sinners, for healing and salvation! (From the Our Lady section of our web site, by L. Bracy)

Ash Wednesday: “Return to me with all your heart.” (Joel 2:12)—February 18:

 

Lenten Reflections:

 

Multiplication

By Alfred Joyce Kilmer

 

I take my leave, with sorrow, of Him I love so well;

I look my last upon His small and radiant prison-cell;

O happy lamp! to serve Him with never ceasing light!

O happy flame! to tremble forever in his sight!

 

I leave the holy quiet for the loudly human train,

And my heart that He had breathed upon is filled with lonely pain.

O King, O Friend, O Lover! What sorer grief can be

In all the reddest depths of Hell than banishment from Thee?

 

But from my window as I speed across the sleeping land

I see the towns and villages wherein His houses stand.

Above the roofs I see a cross outlined against the night,

And I know that there my Lover dwells in His sacramental might.

 

Dominions kneel before Him, and Powers kiss His feet,

Yet for me He keeps His weary watch in the turmoil of the street:

The King of Kings awaits me, wherever I may go,

O who am I that He should deign to love and serve me so?

 

“By means of the boundless love which he communicates to human hearts, Christ in the Eucharist urges the faithful to foster warm and constructive relationships with everyone, and work untiringly for the spread of peace throughout the world. The love which the Eucharist nourishes in human hearts impels Christians to work for peace in society. Whoever lives by this love is convinced that conflicts can be resolved and that social justice can prevail.” (St. J. P. II)

 

“Deepen your love daily for the Eucharist.” (St. Louis Guanella)

 

“Be special adorers of the Divine and Blessed Sacrament of the Altar,

which is the heavenly food of the soaring eagles, that is, of the souls advanced in holiness…

and thank Him unceasingly for having left us such an infinite Treasure.” (St Paul of the Cross)

St. Patrick, Bishop and Patron of Ireland (d. 461)—Feast, March 17:
      In the country of Neyll, a King Echu allowed St. Patrick to receive his beloved daughter Cynnia as a nun, though he bewailed the fact that his royal line would thereby end without issue.  The king exacted a promise from Patrick not to insist that he be baptized, yet to promise him the heavenly kingdom.  Patrick agreed, and left the matter in the hands of God.

Sometime later King Echu lay dying.  He sent a messenger to St. Patrick to tell him he desired Baptism and the heavenly kingdom.  To those around him the King gave an order that he not be buried until Patrick came.  Patrick, then in the monastery of Saballum, two days' journey away, knew of the situation through the Holy Spirit before the messenger even arrived.  He left to go to the King, but arrived to find Echu dead.

St. Patrick revived the King, instructed him, and baptized him.  He asked Echu to relate what he had seen of the joys of the just and the pains of the wicked, so that his account could be used for the proving of Patrick's preaching.  Echu told of many other-world wonders and of how, in the heavenly country, he had seen the place that Patrick promised him.  But the King could not enter in because he was unbaptized.

Then St. Patrick asked Echu if he would rather live longer in this world, or go to the place prepared for him in the heavenly kingdom.  The King answered that all the world had was emptiest smoke compared to the celestial joys.  Then having received the Eucharist, he fell asleep in the Lord.

There was a prince in Humestia who was baptized.  Later he expressed unbelief about the doctrine of the Resurrection.  After St. Patrick quoted various texts from the Scriptures, the prince said that if Patrick would raise his grandfather, by then buried many days, he would believe in that Resurrection which Patrick preached.

Patrick signed the tomb of the grandfather with his staff, had it opened, and prayed.  A man of very great height, but not as big as a "giant" who had recently been raised from a huge tomb by Patrick, came forth from the tomb.  He described the torments that went on in Hell, and was baptized.  He received the Eucharist, and retired again to his former sepulcher and "slept in the Lord."  After witnessing this miracle none doubted the truth of the Resurrection. (From from Saints Who Raised the Dead, True Stories of 400 Resurrection Miracles, by Fr. Albert J. Hebert, S. M.)

St. Joseph, Patron of Universal Church, Spouse of B.V.M.—Feast, March 19:
My beloved St. Joseph, adopt me as your child. Take charge of my salvation. Watch over me night and day. Preserve me from occasions of sin. Obtain for me purity of body and soul and the spirit of true prayer. Win for me a spirit of sacrifice, humility, and self-denial. Obtain for me a burning love for Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and tender love for Mary, my Mother. St. Joseph, be with me in life; be with me in death and obtain for me a favorable judgment from Jesus. Amen. (From our D-14 prayer card)

The Annunciation of the Lord— March 25:      

“The Blessed Sacrament is the magnet of souls. There is a mutual attraction between Jesus and the souls of men. Mary drew Him down from heaven.  Our nature attracted Him rather than the nature of angels.  Our misery caused Him to stoop to our lowness.  Even our sins had a sort of attraction for the abundance of His mercy and the predilection of His grace.  Our repentance wins Him to us.  Our love makes earth a paradise to Him; and our souls lure Him as gold lures the miser, with irresistible fascination.” (Fr Frederick William Faber)

Palm Sunday— March 29:

“Through Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration, Jesus longs to open up the floodgates of His merciful love on a troubled world. He longs to heal a broken humanity. Otherwise, He continues to weep in spirit and say: ‘O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you slay the prophets and stone those who are sent to you!’ How often have I wanted to gather your children together as a mother bird collects her young under her wings, and you refused me! Your temple will be abandoned I say to you, you shall not see me until the time comes when you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord’” (Luke 13:34-36). (From our A-5 “Worthy is the Lamb” pamphlet, available through us.)

 

We wish you a Happy and Holy Easter Season!

JESUS, EUCHARISTIC SAVIOR, WE ADORE YOU!

Prayer Intentions: Please send us the names of your family, relatives, loved ones, friends and any special intentions you would like us to pray for throughout these holy days before Jesus, Our Eucharistic Lord!
_____________________ ______________________ ______________________
______________________ ______________________ ______________________
We need your prayers and financial contributions more urgently than ever to continue on this most important saving work! Won’t you help us? Please be generous. (Visa / MC accepted)
M.B.S., P.O. Box 1701, Plattsburgh, NY 12901 (518)561-8193
http://www.acfp2000.com/

Start Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration in your parish or community today!

Copyright, M.B.S. All rights reserved.