Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Illuminating Angels: Comforting Angels

From the site of

Doug Snyder brings you another episode of Illuminating Angels. This time we take a look at Comforting Angels. This is a Guideposts production.

Our Lady Of Medjugorje's Christmas Message of 2012

Photo by Loci B. Lenar

The Medjugorje Web - Apparitions of the Virgin Mary in Medjugorje

December 25, 2012 Message to Marija Pavlovic

Our Lady came with little Jesus in her arms and She did not give a message, but little Jesus began to speak and said : 'I am your peace, live my commandments.' With a sign of the cross, Our Lady and little Jesus blessed us together."

December 25, 2012 Annual Apparition Message to Jakov Colo

"Dear children, give the gift of your life to me and completely surrender to me so that I may help you to comprehend my motherly love and the love of my Son for you. My children, I love you immeasurably and today, in a special way, on the day of the birth of my Son, I desire to receive each of you into my heart and to give a gift of your lives to my Son. My children, Jesus loves you and gives you the grace to live in His mercy, but sin has overtaken many of your hearts and you live in darkness. Therefore, my children, do not wait, say ‘no’ to sin and surrender your hearts to my Son, because only in this way will you be able to live God’s mercy and, with Jesus in your hearts, set out on the way of salvation."

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem 3D

Church of the Nativity - Photo

The following news release is from

The birthplace of Jesus Christ

Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ, so why not visit this holy site online for free?

See, hear and feel the birthplace of Jesus Christ in a stunning 3D educational tour of Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.

The Church of the Nativity is built over the cave which is traditionally believed to be the Manger in which the Virgin Mother Mary gave birth to Jesus Christ on that fateful night over 2000 years ago.
Explore and learn about the birth of Christ, the visit of the 3 Kings who came bearing gifts, the star of the Magi and more. Read about different scared items in the Nativity Church, take a guided tour through the Church of the Nativity and listen to explanations about the Church of the Nativity and the birth of Jesus Christ in Bethlehem.
We hope you enjoy our Nativity Church 3D tour and wish you and peace and health. In the words of the angel who appeared at the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem:

"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men!"   (Luke 2:14)

"And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes in a Manger, because there was no room for them in the inn."   (Luke 2:7)

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Virgin Mary of Breezy Point, New York

Virgin Mary of Breezy Point by Stephen B. Whatley

Stephen B Whatley | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

Commentary by Loci B. Lenar

For anyone unfamiliar with the artwork of Stephen B. Whatley, his paintings are recognized internationally. A feature story about this talented artist and his Christian tributes appears in the September 2011 issue of Catholic Life magazine, published in the UK. The article, Stephen B. Whatley the Praying Artist is reprinted on the website of

More recently, Stephen's painting of Saint Kateri Tekakwitha - the first Native American canonized by Rome on October 21, 2012, is featured in The Vatican Past and Present (Issue 11: November 2012 - January 2013; published by The Universe Media Group Ltd).

The painting of the Virgin Mary of Breezy Point and following article is reprinted by permission from the artist.

From the website of Stephen B. Whatley:

A new tribute to the Blessed Virgin Mary, inspired by the statue 'miraculously' left standing as the only remains of The Catholic Church of St. Genevieve in Breezy Point, NY, destroyed by Hurricane Sandy in October 2012. She stands as a memorial to all those who tragically lost their lives and homes during that storm that assaulted New Jersey and the East Coast of America.

The beautiful statue, standing amongst the ruins of the church was first highlighted by journalist Natalie Keyssar in the Wall Street Journal; and quickly became known as the Virgin Mary, Our Lady or The Madonna of Breezy Point.

This pastel drawing was partly inspired by the beautiful photograph, taken by Bobby Plasencia, showing here on Flickr:

Created through December 13 and 14, 2012, expressionist artist Stephen B. Whatley shows this new tribute in memory of both all those felled by the storm; and most recently in sympathy for all those lives devastated on December 14 at the school in Newtown, Connecticut. May faith go some way to consoling those in the most devastating state of grief.  Peace.

Pastel on paper
23.4 x 16.5in/59 x 42cm

To view more of Stephen's work or to order prints, please visit

Wishing all Visitors a Blessed and Merry Christmas

Photograph by Loci B. Lenar

Christmas Prayer

Lord, in this holy season of prayer and song and laughter, we praise you for the great wonders you have sent us: for shining star and angel's song, for infant's cry in lowly manger. We praise you for the Word made flesh in a little Child. We behold his glory, and are bathed in its radiance.

Be with us as we sing the ironies of Christmas, the incomprehensible comprehended, the poetry made hard fact, the helpless Babe who cracks the world asunder. We kneel before you shepherds, innkeepers, wisemen. Help us to rise bigger than we are. Amen.

Christmas Prayer

God of love, Father of all, the darkness that covered the earth has given way to the bright dawn of your Word made flesh. Make us a people of this light. Make us faithful to your Word, that we may bring your life to the waiting world. Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Christmas Prayer


Ezio and Aurora Ippoliti
Via Stella, 1

More Prayers: Catholic Online

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Rome is home to one of the most picturesque, Christmas markets in the world

The video and following excerpt is from

December 22, 2012. ( Bundled in the heart of Rome, in Piazza Navona, you will find one of the most visited Christmas markets in all of Europe. The smell of roasted chestnuts fills the air, and you are sure to find chocolate nuggets and Italian pastries.

They sell everything from sweets, to warm beverages, cotton candy, and of course, Nativity sets, Advent wreaths and Christmas tree ornaments. But the lifeline of these markets are the artisans. They spend half a year toiling in their shops and the other half, in the market selling their work. They fear that one day, they will be out of job.  

Read More: Christmas Markets

Friday, December 21, 2012

A Muslim's Search for Meaning Leads to Christ

CBN TV - Video

The following excerpt is from

Antonio Santana found meaning in Islam, but he didn't find salvation until he met Jesus.

He started having dreams. “I dreamt that I was swimming in a big ocean all by myself and there was a figure in the background sitting on a rock. He was fishing for me. I didn’t know who that figure was because I couldn’t categorize Him at that moment as Jesus Christ, but I had an impression that was Jesus. I was trying to make sense of it. At the same time I couldn’t explain it.”

Read More: Antonio Santana 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Pope 'deeply saddened' by Connecticut school shooting, asks for prayers and consolation

The video and following news story is from

December 17, 2012. ( Benedict XVI expressed his sorrow for the victims and survivors of Friday's mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school that left 27 dead, including 20 children and the alleged gunman.

The Pope addressed the tragedy publicly for the first time, during the Angelus on Sunday.

“I was deeply saddened by Friday’s senseless violence in Newtown, Connecticut. I assure the families of the victims, especially those who lost a child, of my closeness in prayer. May the God of consolation touch their hearts and ease their pain.”

The Pope first offered his condolences on Friday, soon after shooting took place at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

On Saturday, the Vatican Secretary of State issued a press release on behalf of Benedict XVI saying he was praying for God to console all those affected by the shooting.

That message was reinforced during Sunday's Angelus.

“During this Advent Season, let us dedicate ourselves more fervently to prayer and to acts of peace. Upon those affected by this tragedy, and upon each of you, I invoke God’s abundant blessings!”.

The community of Newtown has a population of about 2500, and is part of the Diocese of Bridgeport.

Its Catholic Church, St. Rose of Lima, has become a gathering point in the aftermath of the shooting, for mourners to honor the victims and survivors of the shooting.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Pray for God's Protection on Your Family, Our Nation and World

Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Miraculous Signs of Archangel Michael 

Loci B. Lenar spoke publicly at St. Mary's prayer service on September 20, 2012, regarding a miraculous photograph that he took of a statue of Archangel Michael in the Church of St. Michael, Netcong, New Jersey.

The prayer service held at St. Mary's Church focused on Michaelmas (Feast of St. Michael and the Archangels).  The Catholic church is located on Myers Avenue in Denville, NJ.

Please make note: Mr. Lenar added and said, "In order to capture the rainbow that appeared around the statue and display window, I photographed the image without using a flash even though indoor lighting was dim (left photo with darker exposure). There is also a distinct shadow appearing around the arms of the statue from the rainbow as well. However, the photograph on the right is taken with the flash on (lighter exposure). With added light the colorful rainbow is diffused. (There is still a visible rainbow around the statue, but it's diffused from the camera flash). Furthermore, after the photographs were taken, I shared the images directly as captured on the camera's digital memory card (before downloading photos into my computer) with my spiritual advisor, Fr. Richard Tartaglia of Saint Mary's Church, Denville, NJ. The original digital images were transferred onto a CD for church archives."

Mr. Lenar said, "God is both the director and divine light - He sets the timing and place for us to act in response to His instructions. In the motion picture industry, the film director says, 'lights, camera, action.'  Therefore, when called by God, we need to respond to His commands. With that in mind, there is significance to the photograph of St. Michael the Archangel and its meaning in the global community. One cannot avoid noticing while watching television programs the ongoing stories of acts of violence reported on network news shows. From the tragic shootings in July of 2012 at Aurora, Colorado, during the midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises to the violence in the Middle East - the question must be raised: Is our world losing control?”

Mr. Lenar said the following scripture appears to answer the question: "At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people - everyone whose name is found in the book - will be delivered." (Daniel 12:1)

“St. Michael the Archangel is the protector of God’s people and church,”
said Mr. Lenar.

With prayerful discernment, Mr. Lenar believes and said, "Our Lord Jesus is calling for all to join together and 'pray for divine protection' in order to mitigate (end) violence throughout the world. It’s now more important than ever before to pray for our nation and families, especially for people who are subjected to adversity and disrespectful behavior on a daily bases. Our world is in dire need of healing and peace - with prayer everything is possible.” 

Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel

Saint Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle,
be our protection against the malice and snares
of the devil. May God rebuke him we humbly pray;
and do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly host, by the power of God,  
thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits who wander through
the world seeking the ruin of souls.

To read more about this story and to view additional photographs, please visit the following link: Signs of Archangel Michael

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Johnsons: God's Amazing Grace

CBN TV - Video

A couple adopts a baby from Africa and witnesses a miracle in her life and theirs. Born with Hepatitis B, Gracie Johnson is healed of her illness.

Sunday, December 09, 2012

History of Our Lady of Guadalupe: Ultimate symbol of the New Evangelization

The video and following news report is from

December 9, 2012. ( The story of Our Lady of Guadalupe is centuries old, but its appeal, evergreen. 

As the anniversary of the apparitions approach, Catholics around the world, but especially those from Mexico, prepare to honor her through prayer and song.

Yet, for many, it has taken special significance amidst a push towards the New Evangelization.

Academics Prefect, Mexican College in Rome
“Blessed Mary is able to relay a Christian message to a non-Christian culture.”

The apparitions date back to 1531 in modern day Mexico City, as a humble indigenous man by the name of Juan Diego walked past a hill, where Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared before him.

She asked him to convey a message to have a church built in her son's honor. But upon doing so, Juan Diego receives a skeptical response from the archbishop, Friar Juan de Zumárraga.

Academics Prefect, Mexican College in Rome
“The archbishop asks for a sign as proof, to show that Juan Diego is being truthful. And in reality, the archbishop doesn't get one sign, he gets three. The first is appearance of roses.”

Those roses appeared on top of the hill called Tepeyac, in the midst of winter. Juan Diego picked several roses at the Lady's request. But before delivering them, his uncle falls ill and summons Juan Diego to fetch him a priest because he is dying.

While on his way, Our Lady of Guadalupe appears before him again. As Juan Diego apologizes for not delivering the roses, he explains about his uncle's illness.

Academics Prefect, Mexican College in Rome
“To that, our Blessed Virgin Mary responds, 'Am I not your mother, in whom you can confide? I look after and worry about you. Don't worry anymore, your uncle Juan Bernardino has healed.'”

The miraculous healing, gives way to the third and final sign. On December 12, 1531, Juan Diego heads out to see the archbishop, using his cloak to hold the roses he picked on the hill.

Academics Prefect, Mexican College in Rome
 “When Juan Diego goes before Archbishop Friar Juan de Zumárraga, he presents the flowers as a sign. And upon opening up his cloak, the roses fall and miraculously the image of the Our Blessed Lady of Guadalupe appears.”

The image on the cloak, depicting Our Lady of Guadalupe with olive skin and dressed as an Aztec princess triggered a mass conversion among the indigenous population in Mexico to Catholicism.

Academics Prefect, Mexican College in Rome
 “Our Blessed Mary was far ahead of us when it comes to the New Evangelization, presenting the Gospel in a brand new way.” 

The three signs, led to the construction of a cathedral where Our Lady of Guadalupe indicated. Today, a large Basilica in her honor stands there as well.

Pieter Bruegel's "The Procession to Calvary" hits the big screen

The video trailer and following excerpt is from

December 9, 2012. ( The drama film, 'The Mill and the Cross' is currently being showcased in roughly 50 countries. Directed by Polish filmmaker, Lech Majewski, the movie is inspired by Pieter Bruegel's 1564 painting 'The Procession to Calvary.' 

The Flemish artist depicts the Passion of Jesus in his famous Renaissance painting. The 3D film revolves around a dozen characters, which was a challenge in itself, since Bruegel's painting includes more than 500 people.

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Catholic Devotional Prayers and Novenas

Photo by Loci B. Lenar

Are You in Need of Prayer?

Send your requests to or submit directly on our website at the following link: Prayer Requests
Regarding Prayer Requests   
With support of Father Richard Tartaglia, prayer requests submitted to are prayed for every Monday morning after the 8:00 am Mass, during Holy Hour Adoration, which is held between the hours of 8:30 to 9:30 am at Saint Mary's Church.  In addition, all requests are prayed for every third Thursday of each month during the 7:30 PM evening prayer service held at St. Mary's Church.

If you live in the area or plan on visiting New Jersey, please consider attending and joining in the prayer services.  St. Mary's Church is located on 15 Myers Avenue in Denville, New Jersey.

For directions to St. Mary's Church, please visit the following link:

Regardless of your religious denomination, please feel free to send your prayer request by email. Your email address will remain confidential. Unless requested otherwise, Loci B. Lenar, the founder of visits Father Richard Tartaglia on a regular bases for spiritual guidance and shares with him all prayer requests.

The following devotional prayers can be used daily to obtain God's blessing and favor. Click on the link to read the prayer.

Friday, December 07, 2012

Father and Son Remember Heavenly Experience

CBN TV - Video

While Todd thought his son was dying, Colton Burpo was actually experiencing heaven. Hear their first-hand account of the experience.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

"Fatima Today” Premiers on Radio Maria Starting December 6, 2012

Our Lady of Fatima - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

World Apostolate of Fatima, USA

Press Release

The Message of Fatima – “Fatima Today” - will be aired live on Radio Maria every Thursday at 2:00 pm ET, 1:00 pm CT, 12:00 MT and 11:00 PT commencing on Thursday, December 6, 2012.

The program takes its name from “Fatima For Today, The Urgent Marian Message of Hope” written by Father Andrew Apostoli, C.F.R., and published by Ignatius Press in 2010, and will, like Father’s book, present an understanding of Our Lady’s message as it pertains to the world today which is in full communion with that of Holy Mother Church.

The program will be hosted by Deacon Bob Ellis, National Coordinator of The World Apostolate of Fatima, USA – A Public International Association of the Faithful under the Pontifical Council for the Laity.

Father Andrew Apostoli, C.F.R. will be Deacon Bob’s guest on the program’s premier.

The program can be heard live throughout the country on the internet at Radio Maria by simply clicking on the “Listen Now” button.

It can also be heard live on the following radio stations:


Alexandria – 580 AM

New Iberia – 1360 AM

Natchitoches – 89.7 FM

Lake Charles – 91.1 FM


D’lberville – 88.1 FM

New York

Albany – 89.9 FM

New York (Affiliate) – 620 AM


Springfield – 1600 AM / Anna – 88.7 FM


Hollidaysburg – 88.1 FM


Port Arthur – 1250 AM


Peshtigo – 91.3 FM

“We would be mistaken to think that Fatima’s prophetic mission is complete.” - Pope Benedict XVI

“The Message of Fatima is more important today than ever.” - Blessed John Paul II

“Learn the Message of Fatima. Live the Message of Fatima. Spread the Message of Fatima.” - Pope Benedict XVI

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Our Lady of Medjugorje - Message of December 2, 2012

Stained Glass Window - Photo by Loci B. Lenar

The Medjugorje Web - Apparitions of the Virgin Mary in Medjugorje

Our Lady's Monthly Message to Mirjana Dragicevic-Soldo

December 2, 2012

“Dear children; With motherly love and motherly patience anew I call you to live according to my Son – to spread His peace and His love – so that as my apostles you may accept God’s truth with all your heart and pray for the Holy Spirit to guide you. Then you will be able to faithfully serve my Son and show His love to others with your life. According to the love of my Son and my love, as a mother, I strive to bring all of my stray children into my motherly embrace and to show them the way of faith. My children, help me in my motherly battle and pray with me that sinners may become aware of their sins and repent sincerely. Pray also for those whom my Son has chosen and consecrated in His name. Thank you.”

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Miraculous "Hawaiian” Myrrh-streaming Iveron Icon to visit California in December

Holy Iveron Icon

Holy Theotokos of Iveron Russian Orthodox Church - Hawaii's Myrrh-Streaming Icon

The photograph and following excerpt is from the Russian Orthodox Church:

November 2012 Update

In June of 2008, the “Hawaiian” Myrrh-streaming Iveron Icon was officially recognized by the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia as miraculous and worthy of veneration, and was given the blessing to travel to the various churches and monasteries of Holy Orthodoxy. The original “owner” of the Icon, Reader Nectarios, was charged by the Russian Orthodox Church to be Her guardian, and provide for the safety and care of this Wonderworking Icon of Christ’s Holy Church.

By the Grace of God, the Holy Cross has slowly ceased to continuously stream Myrrh as it once did, now doing so on certain occasions throughout the year, Pascha being the most recent. What is comforting to the faithful is the Holy Cross still continuously provides a beautiful and pungent fragrance, whether it streams or not. While the "Hawaiian" Iveron Icon of the Mother of God travels and brings the grace of God to various places, the Holy Cross always remains in Hawaii to provide for the protection and veneration of the faithful.

Since June of 2008, She has been to over 500 churches in North America of all (canonical) jurisdictions, and has been venerated by an estimated quarter of a million people throughout the United States. In many cities, the holy Icon is taken from one parish to another, being venerated by all the Orthodox clergy, and helping to establish and heal relationships amongst the Orthodox faithful, and also strengthening and fostering ties between the sister parishes. Requests have now been made for the Wonderworking Icon to be brought to Russia, Georgia, the Ukraine, Greece, Cyprus, South America, Europe, the Holy Land, Romania, Mount Athos, and Serbia.

Numerous miracles have been attributed to the Theotokos through this “humble little Icon”, accounts are only just being collected, and are indeed numerous. Physical and spiritual healings have included the healing of blindness and eye disease, cancer, demonic possession, paralysis, kidney disease, chronic pain, and debilitating viruses.

Yet, wherever the holy Icon goes, the Grace of Our Lord Jesus Christ and His Holy Mother abound. People have commented that just being in the presence of this Icon, you feel such an abundance of love and joy. It is truly indescribable. We are so very blessed that God has shown His love toward us by allowing us a small forebearance of what the saints call, "the true odour of sanctity." The true meaning of the Icon's appearance is known only to God, time will reveal all things. Yet, what we do know is this, God loves us. And that is all that matters.

The Holy Iveron Icon will visit California in December of 2012 at the following church locations: 

Saturday, December 8, 2012
Holy Nativity of Christ Greek Orthodox Church
1110 Highland Drive
Novato, CA 94949
Akathist, 9:00am (The holy Icon will remain in church until 11:00am)

St. Basil the Great Greek Orthodox Church
6430 Bose Lane
San Jose, CA 95120
Paraklesis, 12:45pm (The holy Icon will remain in church until 4:30pm)

Protection of the Holy Virgin Russian Orthodox Church
3475 Ross Road
Palo Alto, CA 94303
Vigil, 5:00pm

Sunday, December 9, 2012
Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church
900 Alameda De Las Pulgas
Belmont, CA 94002
Orthros, 8:30am
Divine Liturgy, 10:00am

Saturday, December 15, 2012
Ss. Michael and Gabriel Romanian Orthodox Church
4633 Raley Road
Sacramento, CA 95838-2422
Divine Liturgy, 10:00am

Holy Resurrection Romanian Orthodox Church (RP)
1620 Bell Street
Sacramento, CA 95825
Paraklesis, 1:00pm (The holy Icon will remain in church until 2:00pm)

Holy Cross Romanian Orthodox Church
1401 S. White Road
San Jose, CA 95127-4750
Vespers & Paraklesis, 6:00pm

Sunday, December 16, 2012
Holy Resurrection Romanian Orthodox Church
26050 Kay Avenue
Hayward, CA 94545-2648
Divine Liturgy, 10:00am