Sunday, October 31, 2010

Corpus Christi Church: A Display of Colorful Light

Light of Corpus Christi - Photo by Loci B. Lenar
By Loci B. Lenar

While driving through Chatham Township, NJ, I experienced what could be described as a spiritual invitation by Our Lord Jesus to visit Corpus Christi Catholic Church. As I entered the church, my eyes were beholding a rear and beautiful display of light shining through the stained glass windows. The exhibition of colorful light can be seen throughout the church. Sunlight is creating beautiful colors as it shines through the stained glass and reflects on the church floor, the plants, and pews. 

In the center of the church there is a large cross depicting the Crucifixion of Jesus.

Crucifixion - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Corpus Christi Church Pews - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

I also photographed a series of images thoughout the church which are part of the Corpus Christi Church set on

Corpus Christi 8 - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Corpus Christi 10 - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Window with Angel - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

St. Joseph - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Corpus Christi Church - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

If you decide to visit the church, it's located on 234 Southern Boulevard in Chatham, New Jersey. The town is located in Morris County.

Copyright 2010 Loci B. Lenar

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Saturday, October 30, 2010

St. Teresa of Avila Church: Inspirational Window Art

Jesus Christ (window detail)
Photo by Loci B. Lenar

By Loci B. Lenar

While driving through Summit, New Jersey, I came across and stopped at the St. Teresa of Avila Church. The beautiful Catholic Church is located on 306 Morris Avenue.

Since I had my camera in hand, it was a perfect opportunity to take some photographs of the stained glass windows. The photos are posted here for your enjoyment. I've added scripture to some photos to illustrate the image.

St. Joseph (window detail)
Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Angel of the Lord (window detail)
Photo by Loci B. Lenar

The angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: 'He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.' Now I have told you."   -Matthew 28:5-7

Sacred Heart of Jesus (window detail)
Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Assumption of Mary into Heaven
Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Baptism of Jesus (window detail)
Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. But John tried to deter him, saying, "I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?" Jesus replied, "Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness." Then John consented.

As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased."  
-Matthew 3:13-17

More of Lenar's Photos: Stained Glass Window Gallery

Photographs Copyright 2010 Loci B. Lenar

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A Peek Inside St. Virgil's: Photographer Captures the Beauty of Stained Glass

St. Virgil Catholic Church - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

A Peek Inside St. Virgil's: Photographer Captures the Beauty of Stained Glass - Morris Township - Morris Plains, NJ Patch

Thousand-year-old art form continues to provide spiritual inspiration

By Kathy Shaskan

When Loci Lenar is on the move, he usually packs his camera. That's how he captures so many inspiring photos of religious art, a longtime hobby that he says expresses his strong spiritual beliefs. A series of photographs Lenar shot of the stained glass windows in St. Virgil Roman Catholic Church in Morris Plains (NJ), displays both his creative eye and the unique play of light and color that has made stained glass a popular art form for over a thousand years.

St. Virgil Church - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

"I'm in a family business," the Mine Hill resident said.  "In my travels, I'll often stop at a church and say a prayer." If he is inspired by the religious art he encounters, "I'll photograph it."

St. Virgil Church - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Shooting stained glass windows is a challenge. "It's difficult. You have to take the lighting into account. You can't use a flash because you would lose a lot of the color."  Lenar said. The wonder of shooting these colorful panes, though, is that they glow as if lit from within. "The exterior light enhances the colors."

Asked to explain his attraction to stained glass windows, Lenar replied, "They make reference to the gospels and they're helpful during prayer. You can reflect on an image and it gives you inspiration."

To see more photographs by Loci Lenar, visit his Stained Glass Window Gallery.

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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Signs and Wonders: Incorrupt Body of St. Pio of Pietrelcina

Video from YouTube of Incorrupt Body of St. Padre Pio

Sainthood and Recognition of Padre Pio

Excerpt from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

On 20 September 1918, while hearing confessions, Padre Pio (1887-1968) is said to have had his first occurrence of the stigmata—bodily marks, pain, and bleeding in locations corresponding to the crucifixion wounds of Jesus Christ. This phenomenon continued for fifty years, until the end of his life. The blood flowing from the stigmata is said to have smelled of perfume or flowers, a phenomenon mentioned in stories of the lives of several saints and often referred to as the odour of sanctity.

In 1982, the Holy See authorized the Archbishop of Manfredonia to open an investigation to discover whether Padre Pio should be considered a saint. The investigation went on for seven years, and in 1990 Padre Pio was declared a Servant of God, the first step in the progression to canonization.

Beginning in 1990, the Congregation for the Causes of Saints debated how heroically Padre Pio had lived his life, and in 1997 Pope John Paul II declared him venerable. A discussion of the effects of his life on others followed, including the cure of an Italian woman, Consiglia de Martino, which had been associated with Padre Pio's intercession. In 1999, on the advice of the Congregation, John Paul II declared Padre Pio blessed.

After further consideration of Padre Pio's virtues and ability to do good even after his death, including discussion of another healing attributed to his intercession, the Pope declared Padre Pio a saint on 16 June 2002. Three hundred thousand people were estimated to have attended the canonization ceremony.

Padre Pio is one of only two saints who were priests living after the Second Vatican Council; the other being Saint Josemaria Escriva. Both priests had permission from the pope to offer the traditional Latin Mass without any of the liturgical reforms that stemmed from the Council.

On 1 July 2004, Pope John Paul II dedicated the Padre Pio Pilgrimage Church in San Giovanni Rotondo to the memory of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina. A statue of Saint Pio in Messina, Sicily attracted attention in 2002 when it allegedly wept tears of blood. Padre Pio has become one of the world's most popular saints. There are more than 3,000 "Padre Pio Prayer Groups" worldwide, with three million members. There are parishes dedicated to Padre Pio in Vineland, New Jersey and Sydney, Australia. A 2006 survey by the magazine Famiglia Cristiana found that more Italian Catholics pray to Padre Pio than to any other figure. This prayer, more properly understood as a request, is not to be confused with worship which the Catholic Church teaches is due only to God himself.

A statue of Padre Pio will be built on a hill near the town of San Giovanni Rotondo in the southern province of Puglia, Italy, close to the town where he is commemorated. The project will cost several million pounds, with the money to be raised from his devotees around the world. The statue will be coated in a special photovoltaic paint which will enable it to trap the sun's heat and produce solar energy, making it an "ecological" religious icon.

On 3 March 2008, the body of Saint Pio was exhumed from his crypt, 40 years after his death, so that his remains could be prepared for display. A church statement described the body as being in "fair condition". Archbishop Domenico D'Ambrosio, papal legate to the shrine in San Giovanni Rotondo, stated "the top part of the skull is partly skeletal but the chin is perfect and the rest of the body is well preserved".  Archbishop D’Ambrosio also confirmed in a communiqué that “the stigmata are not visible.” He went on to say that St. Pio's hands "looked like they had just undergone a manicure".

Cardinal José Saraiva Martins, prefect for the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints, celebrated Mass for 15,000 devotees on 24 April at the Shrine of Holy Mary of Grace, San Giovanni Rotondo, before the body went on display in a crystal, marble, and silver sepulcher in the crypt of the monastery. Padre Pio is wearing his brown Capuchin habit with a white silk stole embroidered with crystals and gold thread. His hands hold a large wooden cross. 800,000 pilgrims worldwide, mostly from Italy, made reservations to view the body up to December 2008, but only 7,200 people a day will be able to file past the crystal coffin. Officials extended the display through September, 2009.

Saint Pio's remains were placed in the church of Saint Pio, which is beside San Giovanni Rotondo. In April 2010 they were moved to a special golden "Cripta".

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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Ray Hayworth: Cancer Vanishes with Prayer

Ray Hayworth: Cancer Cast Out - Christian Broadcasting Network

By Dory Nissen and Aaron Little – Ray and Billie Hayworth are pretty happy with where they are in life. Their kids are grown and gone. They’ve been married over 46 years and still consider themselves best friends. But their lives were altered dramatically when Ray found a golf ball size lump on his neck. At first, he saw no reason for concern.

"That first day, even for the first week, I really had no thought of what the results would be," Ray said. "I wasn’t worried about it. There was no pain. So if there is no pain, there is no worry.”

Billie was immediately alarmed.

“I kept noticing him do this [feeling his neck],” Billie said. “And I said, ‘why do you keep doing that?’ And then he said, ‘well look at this. I’ve got this knot on my neck.’ I thought it was cancer instantly, immediately. And I said, ‘oh, honey. This isn’t good; I don’t think this is good.’”

"My wife caused me to realize the severity of it and the importance of getting some answers," Ray said.

Ray’s doctor called with the results of the biopsy. Billie answered the phone.

"And I said, 'please tell me, is it cancer?' And she said, 'yes it is cancer,'" Billie said.

Ray had not one, but two types of cancer: carcinoma and melanoma.

"Our worlds actually stopped," Ray said. "Probably the lowest part of my life is when the doctor said, ‘you have cancer.’ Your heart goes to the bottom at that point.”

"At night, I would lay my hands on his neck and he’d be sleeping away," Billie said. "And I would say, 'Satan, how dare you! How dare you come against us like this! Greater is He, God, who is in us!' And I would just yell out, 'I command you in the name of Jesus, you get off; you get off of his neck!"

Friends and family started praying.

"That really meant the world," Ray said. "It lightens your load. You don’t feel like you are carrying it yourself and that elates me."

The lump went completely away! A trip to the doctor confirmed the cancer was completely gone.

"The doctor walked in with a big smile on her face and immediately relieved our fears," Billie said. "She looked at Ray and said, 'I don’t know what you did, but whatever you did, don’t stop. Keep doing it. And he just raised his hands and said, 'thank you Jesus, thank you Jesus.' I looked at her and I said, 'Doctor, we just prayed and God healed him.'"

"I was elated when the doctor said there was no cancer," Ray recalled. "None of the scans showed it; there was no evidence of any cancer in my body. I was very happy for that and told her that. For her sake and for medical science sake, I went back and took another MRI and it was negative also."

Ray has had no sign of cancer for three years. He says the Lord gave him a scripture that signifies God’s amazing power.

“Be still and know that I am God. That’s my theme for the rest of my life," Ray said, “to know that God is still there."

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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Shrine of St. Joseph

Cross of Christ - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

By Loci B. Lenar

While visiting the Shrine of Saint Joseph today, I took a stroll around the grounds and photographed a cross which is surrounded by beautiful trees that are beginning to show autumn colors on the leaves.  The cross is located in the rear of the shrine.

Hall of Candles - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

I decided to stop at the shrine to have a votive candle lit for some personal intentions and said some prayers. The wood statue below of Joseph is also displayed inside the Hall of Candles with other saints. 

The Catholic shrine is located on 1050 Long Hill Road, Stirling, New Jersey.

St. Joseph - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

O blessed Saint Joseph, tenderhearted father, faithful guardian of Jesus, chaste spouse of the Mother of God, we pray and beseech thee to offer to God the Father His divine Son, bathed in blood on the Cross for sinners, and through the thrice-holy Name of Jesus, obtain for us from the Eternal Father the favor we implore. (Name your request.)

Appease the Divine anger so justly inflamed by our crimes, beg of Jesus mercy for thy children. Amid the splendors of eternity, forget not the sorrows of those who suffer, those who pray, those who weep; stay the Almighty arm which smites us, that by thy prayers and those of thy most holy spouse, the Heart of Jesus may be moved to pity and to pardon. Amen.

St. Joseph, pray for us.

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Sunday, October 17, 2010

Quebec's Brother Andre Canonized as Saint

Saint Andre Bessette, of Canada

Quebec's Brother Andre canonized as Canada's 1st saint of the 21st century - Winnipeg Free Press

The photograph and following excerpt is from Winnipeg Free Press:

By Nelson Wyatt and Melanie Marquis - The Canadian Press

MONTREAL - Brother Andre, the humble Quebec cleric who was credited with miracle healings before his death in 1937, became Canada's first saint of the 21st century Sunday in a moving ceremony at the Vatican.

People applauded and cheered in Montreal at the ornate St. Joseph's Oratory — which was founded by Brother Andre — when Pope Benedict bestowed the honour on him.

The Pope noted that Saint Andre was poorly educated but nevertheless understood what was essential to his faith.

"Doorman at the Notre Dame College in Montreal, he showed boundless charity and did everything possible to soothe the despair of those who confided in him," Benedict said.

Thousands packed St. Peter's Square for the event, including many Canadians who made the trip to Rome for the canonization. An official Canadian delegation was led by Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon and included Montreal Mayor Gerald Tremblay.

Francoise Bessette, whose grandfather was Brother Andre's first cousin, was among the thousands of Canadians in St. Peter's Square.

"I didn't think this would happen while I was alive," said Bessette, whose brother was named after the saint. "So to be here today is very special for me."

Alain Pilote, a 49-year-old pilgrim from Rougemont, near Montreal, who came for the mass, said, "I think all the people from Quebec are happy now."

He was declared "venerable" by Pope Paul VI in 1978, and beatified — declared "blessed" — by Pope John Paul II in 1982.

Benedict announced his canonization in February after recognizing a second miracle attributed to Brother Andre.

Read More: Quebec's Brother Andre Canonized as Saint

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Mary MacKillop Officially Declared a Saint

Mary MacKillop - Australia's First Saint - AFP Photo

Mary MacKillop officially declared a saint - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

The photograph and following excerpt is from the Australian Boadcasting Corporation:

Mary MacKillop has officially been declared Australia's first Catholic saint - Saint Mary MacKillop of the Cross.

Pope Benedict XVI addressed over 50,000 pilgrims who gathered at the Vatican in Rome, of which about 9,000 were from Australia.

St Peter's Square was awash with Australian flags and gold balloons bearing Mary MacKillop's image, as pilgrims packed in to hear the pope's vital words.

Pope Benedict spoke about the achievements of Mary MacKillop.

"She attended to the needs of each young person entrusted to her without regard for station or wills, providing both intellectual and spiritual formation," he said.

The pope also canonised Canada's Brother Andre and four other saints from Italy, Poland and Spain and declared that "throughout the Church they be honoured devoutly among all the saints."

Born in 1842 in Fitzroy, Melbourne, after her mother and father migrated to Australia from Scotland, Mary MacKillop dedicated her early life to educating poor children in regional Penola, South Australia, and at the age of 25 founded the Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart.

She was the first Australian nun to set up an order and the first to go outside the cities and administer to the poor.

In the early 1990s the Vatican accepted she was responsible for miraculously curing a woman who had leukaemia in 1961 and in 2009 Pope Benedict XVI confirmed her second miracle, which involved the healing of a woman with inoperable lung cancer during the mid-1990s.

Read More: Mary MacKillop Officially Declared a Saint

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Friday, October 15, 2010

Testimony on how Padre Pio Cured Woman's Cancer

Statue of Padre Pio - Photograph by Loci B. Lenar

Minister's mother tells how Padre Pio cured her cancer - CI News

The following story is from Catholic Ireland News:

By Sean Ryan

The mother of Minister for Tourism and Sport, Mary Hanafin has told how she believes she would have died in her twenties if she hadn't been cured of cancer by Padre Pio.

Thurles native Mary Hanafin, who has one of Padre Pio's mittens in her possession, has revealed how she believes she 'is a walking miracle' after her illness disappeared following a visit to the Saint in Italy in 1963.

And she told a new BBC documentary, The Miraculous Mitten, that Padre Pio is the key to helping Ireland out of the recession. She said, “He has to offer hope and peace of mind to a modern Ireland that has gone astray in every way. We are losing what he had; simplicity, prayerful life and helping people.”

Mary Hanafin was just four years old when doctors gave her mother the grim prognosis of cancer. She said, “I had been diagnosed with cancer and the surgeon said I had to have an operation in September and I had to have a hysterectomy.”

“I decided if they couldn't do anything for me I would go to see Padre Pio and he would cure me. I was very ill when I got to San Giovanni.”

“I had the privilege of going to the mass he celebrated at 5 o'clock. I thought in my mind would you put your hand on my head and bless me and so he did.” She added, “I was very sick going home two days later. They gave me the last rites and said there was no hope. I came to the following day and there was no cancer. It had to be Padre Pio there was no other way.”

The Capuchin monk Padre Pio became known as the living saint until his death on September 3 1968.

He was beatified in 1999 and canonised in 2002.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Mary, Our Model in Prayer

Mother Mary and Infant Jesus
Photograph by Loci B. Lenar

Commentary By Loci B. Lenar

The photograph is a close-up of Mary and Infant Jesus. A soft glow in the photograph helps to highlight the face of Mary and Infant Jesus. The beautiful wood icon is part of a display of votive candles which are lit for prayers and petitions. The display is on the left side of the church as you enter into the Monastery of Our Lady of the Rosary. The Catholic church is located on 543 Springfield Avenue, Summit, NJ, USA.

Prayers - Catholic Online

Mary, Our Model in Prayer

All praise and glory are Yours, almighty Father:

You have given us Your Son Jesus to save us from sin.
We praise You for choosing Mary to be His mother,
for teaching her to believe Your message,
for helping her to accept Your holy will.

Strengthen us by Your Spirit to be like Mary:
to ponder Your word in our hearts,
to obey Your will,
to love Your Son,
to sing Your praises every day.

we praise You through Jesus Christ Your Son
in the love of Your Spirit,
for ever and ever.


Mary's Consent

You have heard it said, O Virgin, that you will conceive and bear a son; you have heard that it will not be by man but by the Holy Spirit. The angel awaits an answer; it is time for him to return to God who sent him. We too are waiting, O Lady, for your word of compassion; the sentence of condemnation weights heavily upon us.

The price of salvation is offered to you. We shall be set free at once if you consent. In the eternal Word of God we all came to be, and behold, we die. In your brief response we are to be remade in order to be recalled to life . . . .

Answer quickly, O Virgin. Reply in haste to the angel, or rather through the angel to the Lord. Answer with a word, receive the Word of God. Speak your own word, conceive the divine Word. Breathe a passing word, embrace the eternal Word.

Why do you delay, why are you afraid? Believe, give praise and receive. Let humility be bold, let modesty be confident. This is no time for virginal simplicity to forget prudence. In this matter alone, O prudent Virgin, do not fear to be presumptuous. Though modest silence is pleasing, dutiful speech is now more necessary. Open your heart to faith, O blessed Virgin, your lips to praise, your womb to the Creator. See, the desired of all nations is at your door, knocking to enter. If he should pass by because of your delay, in sorrow you would begin to seek him afresh, the One whom your soul loves. Arise, hasten, open. Arise in faith, hasten in devotion, open in praise and thanksgiving. "Behold the handmaid of the Lord," she says, "be it done to me according to your word."

From a homily in Praise of the Virgin Mother by Saint Bernard, Abbot

For more daily prayers, please visit the following link: Devotional Prayers

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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Has God's Timing Arrived for Church Wide Healing and Reconciliation?

Our Lady of Fatima - Blue Army Shrine, Washington, NJ
Photograph by Loci B. Lenar

Commentary by Loci B. Lenar

On October 10, 2010, Orthodox Archbishop Hilarion Alfeyev of Volokolamsk is quoted as saying that "A Christian spring is just about to arrive. The 21st century will see the divisions between Christians healed and a rebirth of the faith, gift of God, just as it was preached by the Apostles and preserved by the Fathers."

(Read the complete news story on Catholic Online: Orthodox Archbishop Hilarion Predicts Christian Springtime, Healing of Divisions)

In reference to Orthodox Archbishop Hilarion Alfeyev's statement, I believe God's timing has arrived to move forward with a great outpouring of the Holy Spirit for an upsurge of church wide evangelization. This will not be limited to Catholics and the Orthodox Church, but all Christian denominations as well. My testimony regarding the matter is posted on

In the 1990's, I had a spiritual locution which I shared with my spiritual director, Father Richard Tartaglia of St. Mary's Church, (Denville, NJ) regarding God's plan to move forward in our millennium by building a bridge of peace and unity between people and cultures, including reconciliation amongst religious denominations.

I believe the events are beginning to unfold, while Our Lady of Fatima's Message regarding an era of peace will come to fruition.

A sign from heaven with my testimony on the matter can be read by visiting the following link: Tribute to King: Signs from God's Heavenly Kingdom

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Saint Michael the Archangel by Stephen B. Whatley

St. Michael the Archangel
By Artist Stephen B. Whatley

St. Michael the Archangel - Painted in 2010 by Artist Stephen B Whatley - Flickr Photo Sharing!

Commentary by Loci B. Lenar

The bright colors in the new painting by Stephen B. Whatley represent the mighty power of God and His authority working through Archangel Michael. The novena to St. Michael is a reminder of God's faithfulness in helping people during times of adversity.

The painting of Archangel Michael and the following information is from Stephen's website:

Saint Michael the Archangel - a new tribute painted by Stephen B Whatley on St Michael's Feast Day (September 29) and completed on the Feast Day of St Francis of Assisi. (October 4).

Saint Michael is seen as the Warrior Angel, fighting off Satan in heaven and protecting God's chosen people on earth from evil and enemies. St Michael occupies a special place in the church, appointed its protector; and his Intercession is encouraged to defeat the evil in the world - and for the protection from danger for anyone in their every day life.

" ever I prayed deeply for the strength and insight to express the power of St Michael; and while I looked at a variety of historic interpretations, this painting had its beginnings in my memory of the flickering flame that rose above a candle embossed with the image of St Michael, the evening before as my nervous and creative energy was building in praparation and determination to create this new tribute. Brushstrokes of warm yellows were felt from my heart; from where the defiant but graceful face of St Michael the Archangel would emerge.

I truly felt guided to paint a humble cross within his hand as his 'shield' - which maybe symbolises the power of faith, however big or small."

Singular prayers can be asked of St Michael; or 9 day prayers (Novenas) as below.

Novena Prayer to St Michael

Saint Michael the Archangel, loyal champion of God and His people, I turn to you with confidence and seek your powerful intercession. For the love of God, Who made you so glorious in grace and power, and for the love of the Mother of Jesus, the Queen of the Angels, be pleased to hear my prayer. You know the value of my soul in the eyes of God. May no stain of evil ever disfigure its beauty. Help me to conquer the evil spirit who tempts me. I desire to imitate your loyalty to God and Holy Mother Church and your great love for God and people. And since you are God's messenger for the care of His people, I entrust to you this special request: (Mention your request).

Saint Michael, since you are, by the Will of the Creator, the powerful intercessor of Christians, I have great confidence in your prayers. I earnestly trust that if it is God's holy will my petition will be greated.

Pray for me, Saint Michael, and also for those I love. Protect us in all dangers of body and soul. Help us in our daily needs. Through your powerful intercession, may we live a holy life, die a happy death, and reach heaven where we may praise and love God with you forever.


Saint Michael the Archangel.
Oil on canvas, 36 x 24in/ 89 x 61cm
Copyright 2010 Stephen B. Whatley

For more about the artist, please visit the following link: Stephen B. Whatley

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Ian McCormack and The Lazarus Phenomenon

Ian McCormack and The Lazarus Phenomenon - Amazing Stories |

The video and story is from

In 1982, Ian McCormack of the film The Lazarus Phenomenon was an adventurous 26-year-old. He was diving for lobster on the island of Mauritius (in the southwest Indian Ocean) one evening and was stung by five box jellyfish – one of the most venomous creatures in the world. Its poison can kill a person in four minutes. When an ambulance came, his body was completely paralyzed, and necrosis had started to set into his bone marrow.

On the way to the hospital, McCormack began to see his life flash before him. He knew he was near death. He was an atheist and didn’t know whether or not there was an afterlife. As he lay dying, he saw a vision of his mother, who was the only Christian in his family, praying for him. She encouraged McCormack to cry out to God from his heart and God would hear him and forgive him. He didn’t know what to pray, so he cried out that if God was real, God would help him pray. Instantly, God showed McCormack the Lord’s Prayer.


The ambulance reached the hospital and they brought McCormack inside. The doctors tried to save his life by injecting anti-toxins and dextrose into his body, but it didn’t help. Within a few minutes, hisbody lay lifeless for about 15 minutes.

During this time, McCormack was in a very dark place, and he didn’t know where he was. As he reached out, he found he wasn’t touching anything. When he tried to touch his face, his hand would go right through it. McCormack began to sense that it wasn’t just a physical darkness, but a spiritual darkness. He had a cold eerie feeling that there was something or someone else there, and it or he was looking at McCormack.


Then, a luminous beam of light radiated through the darkness and started to lift him upward. He found himself being translated up into it. McCormack then entered an opening and found himself inside a long narrow tunnel. At the far end of the tunnel he could see the source of the light. Then he watched as a wave of the light broke off the source and moved up the tunnel towards him. This light passed through McCormack, and he could feel a wave of warmth and comfort flood his soul.

Coming out of the end of this tunnel, he found himself standing in the presence of awesome light and power. He wondered if this was just an energy source in the universe or if perhaps there could be someone standing in the midst of this light. A voice immediately responded to his thought and asked him, "Ian, do you wish to return?" McCormack responded, "I don't know where I am, but if I am out of my physical body, I wish to return."

The voice then said, "If you wish to return, you must see in a new light." " Words appeared in front of him, "God is light and in Him is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5)." McCormack had never read a Bible before in his life so he didn't know these words came straight out of it.

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Monday, October 11, 2010

Vatican Publishes Guide about Angels

A “Guide” About Angels Published by the Vatican

The Video and following excerpt is from the website of Rome Reports:

The angels have had cities and shrines named after them, and have been the inspiration for many hymns. However, they are a great unknown and have always been surrounded by a halo of mystery.

The Italian priest Marcello Stanzione has been studying them for years, and has written over 40 books on them. The Vatican Publishing House published the last one: An essential guide to the angels.

Msgr. Marcello Stanzione

"The Angels: An Essential Guide”

“The angels have elements from God and elements from the human being in this sense. Like us, the angels were also created, so they are creatures. But they do not die, and this is part of God's eternity.”

Msgr. Adriano Paccanelli

Vatican Secretariat of State

“They are invisible ministers of God, they are our custodians. They are spiritual beings”.

The most famous Angels are the Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael. The Catholic Church celebrates their feast on September 29. The tradition divides the angels into three groups. The first, seraphim, cherubim and thrones, the second, dominations, virtues and powers. And third, principalities, archangels and angels.

Throughout history, the Orders of the Benedictines, Franciscans and Jesuits have studied them most.

In addition, all the great saints have had a close relationship with the angels.

Msgr. Marcello Stanzione

"The Angels: An Essential Guide”

"Saint Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer was a devotee of the angels and when he entered in any church, he stood a moment. His associates knew the reason: he said he first let his angel pass and he would pass him."

Popes have also conveyed the importance of interacting with angels. The most famous prayer to Archangel Michael was written by Leo XIII.

John Paul II said on several occasions that every day he asked for help to his guardian angel and spoke about the angels in various general audiences. His successor, Benedict XVI, has carried on this devotion to the angels.

Read More: A Guide about Angels

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Saturday, October 09, 2010

Blessed John Henry Newman by Stephen B Whatley

Blessed John Henry Newman by Stephen B Whatley

The Blessed John Henry Newman - Painted in 2010 by Stephen B Whatley - Flickr Photo Sharing!

The noteworthy painting and following description is from the website of Stephen B. Whatley:

On Sunday, September 19, 2010 the British Cardinal John Henry Newman (1801-1890) - who converted from Church of England to Catholicism in his youth - was beatified by Pope Benedict XVI at the end of his visit to Scotland and England that moved the nation.

Stephen B. Whatley was deeply inspired to paint a tribute to the now, Blessed John Henry Newman on that special day. Beginning painting after watching the live television broadcast of the beatification, the expressionist artist says his painting “was inspired by a montage of pictures of Newman throughout his life; with a focus on him as a young man, the spirit of eternal youth in heaven. The suggestion of his crucifix was inspired by that which he was photographed wearing as Cardinal, in old age. I noticed how often he fell into this contemplative pose, his hand raised to his face. The painting, made with many prayers, was complete by 4.55pm; whilst the Pope was still on British soil”.

Beatification is the penultimate stage before canonization as Saint; though by all accounts of the peaceful and holy life of deep faith and goodwill that John Henry Newman lead was that of a 'living Saint'.

Another beacon of contemporay hope present at the beatification Mass in Birmingham UK was Deacon John Sullivan from Massachusetts USA - who in 2001 experienced a miraculous cure of a spinal condition- that had threatened paralysis- and his training before ordination.

After seeing a television programme about Cardinal Newman , Mr Sullivan prayed simply: " Please Cardinal Newman intercede with God to help me go back to classes and be ordained".

For the next 8 months he was relieved of pain and able to walk upright. Then when his classes were complete, the pain returned in fury; and in hospital Mr Sullivan again prayed to Cardinal Newman's interecession. A warm sensation overwhelmed his body and in his words, ".. a tingling all over lasting about 10 minutes; and a tremendous sense of joy, exhuberance and confidence.." - and pain free ever since he was proclaimed cured at the astonishment of his doctors.

The simplest of prayers said with faith can be answered............miracles can happen.

The Blessed John Henry Newman. September 19, 2010
Oil on canvas
24 x 18in/61 x 46cm

To see other paintings by the artist, please visit the following link: Stephen B Whatley: Christian Tributes

About the artist Stephen B. Whatley:

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Friday, October 08, 2010

Orthodox Archbishop Predicts Healing of Christian Divisions

Orthodox Archbishop Hilarion Alfeyev

Orthodox Archbishop Hilarion Predicts Christian Springtime, Healing of Divisions - Living Faith - Home and Family - Catholic Online

The photograph and following excerpt is posted on Catholic Online:

Dynamic Leader Urges Return to the Church Fathers

Orthodox Archbishop Hilarion Alfeyev of Volokolamsk is quoted as saying: "A Christian spring is just about to arrive. The 21st century will see the divisions between Christians healed and a rebirth of the faith, gift of God, just as it was preached by the Apostles and preserved by the Fathers." 

The prelate described as "erroneous" the consideration of the present time as a "post-Christian" era, and those claims that Christianity will disappear from the religious map in the third millennium and be absorbed by Islam.

Read More: Healing of Christian Divisions

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Thursday, October 07, 2010

How to Pray the Holy Rosary

Our Lady of the Holy Rosary
 Photograph by Loci B. Lenar

How to Pray the Holy Rosary

How to Pray the Rosary

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

In the Roman Catholic faith, the Rosary is one of the most beautiful, powerful, and sacred prayers. The Rosary is a devotion to God through a devotion to Mary. The Rosary is Scriptural, Christ centered, and the twenty Mysteries reflect the life of Jesus Christ. The Rosary offers hope when life can be unbearable.


  1. Begin by touching the crucifix and pray The Sign of the Cross.English: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Latin: In nomine Patris et Filii et Spiriti Sancti. Amen.
    • As you say this, with your right hand touch your forehead when you say Father, touch your breastbone when you say Son, touch your left shoulder when you say Holy, and touch your right shoulder when you say Spirit.
  2. Pray The Apostles CreedEnglish: I believe in God, the Father almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth. And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, died, and was buried. The third day He rose again from the dead. He ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of God, the Father almighty. He shall come again to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen. Latin: Credo in Deum Patrem omnipotentem, Creatorem caeli et terrae. Et in Iesum Christum, Filium eius unicum, Dominum nostrum, qui conceptus est de Spiritu Sancto, natus ex Maria Virgine, passus sub Pontio Pilato, crucifixus, mortuus, et sepultus, descendit ad inferos, tertia die resurrexit a mortuis, ascendit ad caelos, sedet ad dexteram Dei Patris omnipotentis, inde venturus est iudicare vivos et mortuos. Credo in Spiritum Sanctum, sanctam Ecclesiam catholicam, sanctorum communionem, remissionem peccatorum, carnis resurrectionem, vitam aeternam. Amen.
  3. On the first large rosary bead, pray the Our Father. English: Our Father, Who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy Name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen. Latin: Pater noster, qui es in caelis, sanctificetur nomen tuum. Adveniat regnum tuum. Fiat voluntas tua, sicut in caelo et in terra. Panem nostrum quotidianum da nobis hodie, et dimitte nobis debita nostra sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris. Et ne nos inducas in tentationem, sed libera nos a malo. Amen.
  4. On each of the next three beads, pray a Hail Mary. English: Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen. Latin: Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum. Benedicta tu in mulieribus, et benedictus fructus ventris tui, Jesus. Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc, et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.
    • Pray these Hail Marys with the following intentions:
      • For the increase of faith.
      • For the increase of hope.
      • For the increase of love.
  5. On the next large bead, pray Glory Be To the Father. English:Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. Latin: Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritui Sancto. Sicut erat in principio, et nunc et semper et in saecula saeculorum. Amen.
  6. Announce the Mystery
    • On the first rosary bead, pray the Our Father.
    • On each of the next ten beads, pray a Hail Mary.
    • On the next large bead, pray a Glory Be To The Father.
    • Pray a Fatima Prayer.English:O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of Hell; lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy. Amen. Latin:Domine Iesu, dimitte nobis debita nostra, salva nos ab igne inferiori, perduc in caelum omnes animas, praesertim eas, quae misericordiae tuae maxime indigent.
  7. Repeat the previous six steps for each of the remaining Mysteries as you work your way around the rosary beads.
  8. Pray a Hail Holy Queen. English: HAIL HOLY QUEEN, mother of mercy; our life, our sweetness, and our hope. To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears. Turn, then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us. And after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ. Amen. Latin: Salve, Regina, Mater misericordiae; vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra, salve. Ad te clamamus, exules filii Hevae; ad te suspiramus, gementes et flentes in hac lacrymarum valle. Eia ergo, advocata nostra, illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte; et Jesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui, nobis post hoc exilium ostende. O clemens, O pia, O dulcis Virgo Maria. Amen.
  9. Pray the Final Prayer (optional). English:O GOD, WHOSE only-begotten Son by His life, death and resurrection, has purchased for us the rewards of eternal life; grant, we beseech Thee, that by meditating upon these mysteries of the Most Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we may imitate what they contain and obtain what they promise, through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
  10. End with the Sign of the Cross.


  • You do not actually need a Rosary, You can pray the Rosary on your fingers or by using another method of counting.
  • If you are nervous about an upcoming event silently say just a decade in your head as you drive there or wait in line for your turn. It is very relaxing to know that our Blessed Mother and Jesus Christ are there for you.
  • Say a decade for a individual in need. All you need to do is mention the name of the person at the end of the decade. (i.e. Oh Lord I lift up this decade of the rosary for (persons name) because (certain circumstance that calls for prayer.)

Things You'll Need

  • A rosary

Related wikiHows

Sources and Citations

Article provided by wikiHow, a wiki how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Pray the Rosary. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

The following illustration can be found on the website of Christian Wallpapers.

The Mysteries of the Holy Rosary

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Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Novena to Mary MacKillop leads to Miracle

Jack Simpson
Photo by Angela Wylie

MacKillop's Untold Miracle - The Sydney Morning Herald

The photograph and following excerpt is from

By Barney Zwartz

JACK SIMPSON should have died at least five years ago. Instead, he is about to leave for Rome to honour the woman whose intervention he credits with his cure, which the Vatican accepts is a miracle.

Jack, 19, was the ''runner-up'', the one held in reserve, for the second miracle Mary MacKillop needed to be canonised Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop in Rome on Sunday week.

Disaster struck in April 1999. ''He went from a normal boy going to school to another boy we didn't know coming home that night. He lost all his competencies and became like a new baby,'' his mother, Sharon Simpson, recalls.

He was eventually diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, cancer, epilepsy and a loss of neurological functions.

Andrew Kornberg, director of the neurology department at the Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne, called Jack's recovery miraculous and the Vatican agreed - not for the MS or cancer but the unprecedented recovery of his intellectual capacity.

Jack's story has not been told until now because while the case was being investigated by the Vatican the family was asked to keep it secret. It was presented to Pope Benedict last year along with Kathleen Evans's cure from inoperable brain and lung cancer - the case chosen as the second miracle.

The Simpson family's ordeal began in 1999 when Jack, then eight, collapsed at school. ''At first we thought he'd hit his head. His eyes were rolling, he couldn't stand and had no comprehension. It was unbelievably horrible,'' Mrs Simpson recalled yesterday.

For the first year there was no diagnosis, as his central nervous system went into meltdown, leaving him paralysed. Soon after the problem was revealed as juvenile MS - with a maximum life expectancy of five years - the family noticed lumps the size of bars of soap in his neck and groin.

''When he went to the nuclear medicine department and they put the tracer in, he was lit up like a Christmas tree. It was quite advanced, stage four Hodgkin's lymphoma,'' said his mother.

A friend organised novenas (nine-day prayer cycles) to Mary MacKillop at St Ambrose's Catholic Church in Woodend in 1999 and 2000, but nothing changed at first. For Mrs Simpson the turning point came one night in 2000.

''That night I thought Jack was going to die. He seemed to be in the last stage, with the breath rattling. I thought, 'You can't keep fighting forever, you have to surrender', and I said, 'If you want him, God, you can have him'.''

Read More: MacKillop's Untold Miracle

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