Showing posts with label Catholic Church. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Catholic Church. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

The Antarctic Chapel is a Catholic Church located in one of the coldest regions of the world

Praying in a cave, under ice: the Antarctic Chapel

News excerpt from The southernmost place of worship in the whole world, of any religion, is a Catholic church.

Eight hundred miles away from the South Pole, in Argentina’s Antarctica, enduring winters of temperatures that go under 100 degrees below absolute zero Fahrenheit, the Belgrano II Base is home to about a thousand people.

Read more: The Antarctic Chapel

Monday, April 08, 2013

Pope Francis meets with first Protestant leader

News from

April 8, 2013 -  On Monday morning, Pope Francis welcomed the president of the Evangelical Church in Germany, Nikolaus Schneider, in his first papal audience with a Protestant leader and his wife.

In a 30 minute meeting, the two leaders spoke about ecumenism. Both spoke about the martyrs as a bond between Christians, as well as the upcoming anniversary of the Reformation in 2017, and the possibility that both Churches will celebrate it together. 

At the end, the two exchanged greetings as well as gifts. Schneider gave Pope Francis a Bible in German, while the Pope gave him a papal medallion. After the exchange, the Pope enthusiastically thanked Schneider in German. 

Other leaders present at the meeting were German Cardinal Kurt Koch, the prefect for the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, as well as German Archbishop Gerhard Muller, prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. 

The Evangelical Church in Germany is a federation of 22 Protestant Churches representing a third of that country's population. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Orthodox and Catholic Breakthrough? Pope Francis Embraces 'My Brother Andrew'

International News - Excerpt from Catholic Online

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Pope Francis, has made it clear. He will continue the work toward the day when the two lungs of the Church, East and West, breathe together again.

First, I want to share my heart with my readers. I long for the full communion of the Orthodox and Catholic Church. I pray daily for the full communion of the Orthodox and Catholic Churches. I do so because I believe it is the will of God that "All May be One" (John 17: 21).

I am also persuaded that the healing of the division between the two sister churches would unleash a profound renewal of the entire Church at the dawn of this new missionary age. I believe that the gifts found in the whole Church will enrich both East and West and assist us in the One mission which we must face together in our One Lord.

Read more: Orthodox and Catholic Breakthrough

Monday, March 18, 2013

St. Mary's Prayer Service Scheduled for March 21, 2013

"Into Your Hands I commit My Spirit" - Photo by Loci B. Lenar 

Please consider visiting St. Mary's Catholic Church for Mass and prayer services. 

Are you in need of prayer? Perhaps a family member or friend is in need of God's mercy and grace?

With help from Loci B. Lenar and support of Father Richard Tartaglia, including Barbara Jones from the National Conference of Catholic Women (NCCW), prayer requests which are submitted through "" are prayed for every Monday morning after Mass during Holy Hour Adoration, between the hours of 8:30 to 9:30 am. If you're unable to attend St. Mary's Church, please join in prayerful unity on Monday mornings every week as we petition God to answer all of our prayers.

Submit your prayer requests to

The church also holds a monthly service for prayer with Fr. Richard Tartaglia including special prayer intentions which are submitted through the website of

Previous services have included prayer for Christian Unity. However, prayers for world peace are always included.

St. Mary's prayer service is held every third Thursday of each month at 7:30 PM with a new theme. March will focus on the Crucifixion of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and his Resurrection on Easter Sunday. The prayer service is scheduled for March 21, 2013.

There is great power through the Holy Spirit when people join together in agreement while praying for God’s help and intervention.

However, if you cannot attend St. Mary's prayer service, you can still join in by praying in unity with St. Mary’s Church for all special prayer intentions.

God wants us to approach him with the desires of our heart. Our Lord calls us to connect with his divine grace in order to receive blessings in our lives.

Trust and believe in God's word and wait for his timing to receive an answer to your prayers. Miracles happen when least expected!

Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear. (Isaiah 65:24)

Regarding prayer, Jesus said, "Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven. For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst." (Matthew 18:19-20)

Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)

If you live in the area or plan on visiting New Jersey, please consider attending and joining in the evening prayer service with Fr. Richard Tartaglia. The service begins with singing of hymns followed with psalm prayers and then reading of the gospels. After the reading, Fr. Tartaglia gives his homily which is followed with a prayer of intercession for Special Prayer Intentions (prayer requests). The Lord's Prayer is recited and after that there is a closing prayer with a blessing given by Fr. Tartaglia. The prayer service is concluded with a closing song.

St. Mary's Catholic Church is located on 15 Myers Avenue in Denville, New Jersey. Father Martin Glynn is the head pastor of the church.

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

Regardless of your religious denomination, please feel free to submit your prayer request by email to Your email will remain confidential.

Prayer request can also be submitted at the following link:

Mr. Lenar visits Father Richard Tartaglia on a regular bases for spiritual guidance and shares with him the prayer requests.

Saint Mary's Monthly Prayer Schedule and Related Themes for 2013

Christian Unity - Thursday, January 17 at 7:30 PM

Lent - Thursday, February 21 at 7:30 PM

Easter - Thursday, March 21 at 7:30 PM

St. Mark - Thursday, April 18 at 7:30 PM

Pentecost - Thursday, May 16 at 7:30 PM

John the Baptist - Thursday, June 20 at 7:30 PM

Mary Magdalene - Thursday, July 18 at 7:30 PM

Michaelmas Day - Thursday, September 19 at 7:30 PM

Church Memorial Day - Thursday, October 17 at 7:30 PM

Thanksgiving - Thursday, November 21 at 7:30 PM

Advent - Tentatively set for Thursday, December 19 at 7:30 PM

St. Mary's Weekly Mass Schedule

Sunday: 7:00, 8:30, 10:00, and 11:30 AM

Saturday: 5:00 PM

Weekdays: 8:00 AM and 12:05 PM - (Except June ~ Labor Day - No 12:05 PM)

First Fridays: 8:00 AM, 12:05 PM, 8:00 PM - (Except June ~ Labor Day - No 12:05 PM)

Holy Days: 7:00 AM, 8:00 AM, 12:00 noon, 7:00 PM

Eve of Holy Days: 5:00 PM

Monday, March 11, 2013

Pray for a New Pope to be Selected for the Catholic Church

Photograph by Loci B. Lenar

Please join in prayer for the Holy Spirit to guide the hearts of all Cardinals as they prepare to vote and select a new Pope in the Catholic Church.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths." (Proverbs 3:5-6)

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Sunday, February 24, 2013

Pope's last Angelus: I will not abandon the Church. I will serve in a different way

News from

It was the last time that Benedict XVI appeared before his studio window to lead the Angelus as Pope. It's estimated that about 200,000 pilgrims gathered in St. Peter's Square to thank the Pope for his eight year Pontificate.

Some came with banners to thank the Pope and be part of history. With only days left as Pope, Benedict XVI clearly spoke about his retirement. In Italian he said, God is asking me to serve the Church in a way that's more appropriate for my age and strength.

“The Lord is calling me 'out to the mountain' to devote more time to prayer and meditation, but this does not mean I'm abandoning the Church. In fact, if God is asking this of me, it's precisely to continue serving the Church with the same dedication and love with which I have served so far, but in a way that's more suited for my age and strength.”

The Pope's Angelus was repeatedly interrupted by applause and cheers. Before completing the last Angelus of his Pontificate, the Pope said he will always be close to the Church and its people.

“Thank you, I will always be near you.”

This Angelus was the Pope's first public appearance, following a spiritual retreat which ended on Saturday. On Monday he will meet with Cardinals of the Roman Curia and on Wednesday, he will celebrate his last General Audience in St. Peter's Square.

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Signs of Christian Unity: More than 1,400 Anglicans want to join Catholic Church

The video and following news excerpt is from

As of January 1, 2012, Anglicans in the United States, now have the option of joining the Catholic Church under a so called 'Personal Ordinariate.' The decision was established by the pope and the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith. This allows Anglicans to join the Church while still keeping part of their liturgical practices.

Its official name is “The Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter,” which will be led by former Episcopalian bishop Jeffrey Neil Steenson. It will be based in Houston, Texas.

Jeffrey Neil Steenson joined the Catholic Church in 2007 and was ordained a priest in 2009. The 59 year old priest is married and has three children. He will however, be part of the Conference of Catholic Bishops where he'll have voting power.

So far, over 100 Anglican priests have applied to become Catholic priests in this newly established ordinariate. Fourteen hundred Anglicans from 22 different parishes have also showed interest. By being part of this personal ordinariate, members will be in full communion with the Catholic Church.

This is only the second Ordinariate to be established by the Church. The first one was back in January of 2011, under the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham for England and Wales. Currently, other cases are also being considered for Australia and Canada.

Worldwide roughly 77 million people belong to the Anglican Church. The U.S. Episcopal Church has just under 2 million members.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Astonishing Variety of People Joining Catholic Church this Easter

Photograph by Loci B. Lenar

US Catholic Church Finds Astonishing Variety of People Joining this Easter - U.S. - Catholic Online

The following excerpt is from Catholic Online:

WASHINGTON, DC (CNA) - A Muslim, a family of seven, a marine, a former abortion clinic administrator - these are just a few of the many faces of people from around the country who are slated to join the Catholic Church at Easter.

The U.S. bishops' conference recently profiled a handful of unique stories from individuals in different states, each of whom will be either baptized or confirmed during the Church's universal celebration of the Easter Vigil on April 24.

Although the numbers are still trickling in for this year, the conference reported that in 2010, there were over 43,000 adult baptisms in the U.S. and more than 75,000 people received into full communion with the Church.

Soon-to-be baptized New Orleans resident Ahdija Cheumbike Baker was raised a Muslim. The daughter of a Detroit man and a Tanzanian woman, Baker is one of the 282 catechumens and candidates that the Catholic Church in New Orleans will be welcoming at Easter.

Baker said that she struggled with some of her Muslim beliefs throughout her life and that ultimately, the "love of the Lord" as well as a love interest drove her to start attending a local Catholic church, St. Peter Claver.

Eighteen year-old Kalene Laforest is a Marine and feels compelled to join the Catholic Church before going on assignment in June. A catechumen at St. Peter's Church in LaGrange, Georgia, LaForest said that she wanted a faith with depth, history, deep spirituality, tradition, and "no all-over-the-place craziness." She is among 1,912 who will join the Catholic Church in the Atlanta archdiocese this year.

Across the U.S. in the Archdiocese of San Francisco, a family of seven will be welcomed into the Church. James and Michelle House, who are parishioners at St. Catherine of Siena Parish, will come into full communion at the Easter Vigil. In the following week, infant David, 2 months old, will be baptized, while his siblings Kristina, James, Alexandra and Joseph will be received into the Church.

Michelle House said the family, who are former Episcopalians, found a welcoming community at St. Catherine's when they moved to northern California.

In Austin, Texas, Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood clinic director and author of the bestselling book "Unplanned," is getting ready to enter the Catholic Church.

Due to a personnel shortage at the abortion clinic she used to work in, she was called in to assist in an ultrasound-guided abortion for the first time in September 2009.

The next few minutes changed Johnson's life irrevocably, as she watched the 13 week-old baby -whom she had believed to be incapable of feeling anything- squirming and twisting to avoid the tube into which it would be vacuumed.

Shocked by what she had seen, Johnson still initially continued her work running the clinic and promoting its work. Just a few weeks later, however, she was in the nearby office of the Coalition For Life, telling its director Shawn Carney that she could no longer continue helping women have abortions.

Johnson and her husband have grown in their faith during the past year, and are now preparing to enter the Catholic Church.

Read more: Variety of People Joining Catholic Church this Easter

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Jesus the Light of the World

Jesus the Light of the World
Photo by Loci B. Lenar

By Loci B. Lenar

While traveling through the town of Madison on October 9, 2010, I had an opportunity to stop at and photograph a bronze statue of Jesus which is located in front of St. Vincent Martyr Parish. Interestingly, on top of the statue, the sunlight is creating a noteworthy reflection on the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Bronze Statue of Jesus
Photo by Loci B. Lenar

In John 8:12, Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

Jesus also said in Matthew 5:14-16, “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."

St. Vincent Martyr Church
Photo by Loci B. Lenar

If you're driving through Morris County, the Catholic Church is located on 26 Green Village Road, Madison, New Jersey.

Mass Schedule

Saturday: 5:00 p.m.

Sunday: 7:15, 9:00, 10:30 a.m., 12:00 Noon, 5:00 p.m. in Spanish

(July & August: 7:15, 9:15, 11:15 a.m.)

Monday through Saturday: 8:30 a.m. and 12:10 p.m. (No 12:10 mass during July and August)

Holy Days of Obligation: 6:30, 8:30 a.m., 12:10, 7:00 p.m. (No 12:10 p.m. mass in August)

Directions to St. Vincent Martyr Church 

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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, September 28, 2010

Unity between Orthodox and Catholic Church Draws Near

Orthodox and Catholic participants at the historic meeting in Vienna.
Sister Churches: Communion between Orthodox and Catholic Draws Near - Living Faith - Home and Family - Catholic Online

The photograph and following excerpt is published on Catholic Online:

By Deacon Keith Fournier

A form of restored communion between the Orthodox and Catholic Churches is near.

Participants in the 12th Session of the "Joint Theological Commission for Dialogue between the Roman Catholic Church and Orthodox Churches" prayed together and discussed the relationship between the two Churches. They did so with humility and a desire to heal the division which has existed in the Body of Christ for over a millennium. This meeting points us in the direction of where this dialogue is headed, a restored communion between the Orthodox and Catholic Churches.

Read More: Signs of Christian Unity

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Friday, May 07, 2010

It's Time to Take a Step Toward Christian Unity

Metropolitan Filaret of Minsk and Sluck

The following article and photograph appeared on Catholic Online:

Orthodox Metropolitan Filaret: It's Time to Take a Step Toward Unity - International News - Catholic Online

By Jesús Colina

The time is now for the Orthodox and Catholic Churches to take a step toward unity, and for Benedict XVI and the Orthodox patriarch of Moscow to meet, says the Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus.The Orthodox leader added that both Churches seek to establish full unity, and stressed that he has come to this conclusion based on the fraternal dialogue and the meetings that they have held with representatives of the Catholic Church.

VATICAN CITY ( - The time is now for the Orthodox and Catholic Churches to take a step toward unity, and for Benedict XVI and the Orthodox patriarch of Moscow to meet, says the Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus.

Metropolitan Filaret of Minsk and Sluck said this Tuesday at the international conference held in Rome on "The Poor Are the Precious Treasure of the Church: Orthodox and Catholics Together on the Path of Charity."

During the conference, which was promoted by the Sant'Egidio Community, participants reflected on the reception of the most frail in our societies, the testimony of the Fathers of the Church, and the challenges dictated by new social problems.

According to Metropolitan Filaret, the time has come to take decisive steps toward unity, reported the country's Catholic news service.

The Orthodox leader added that both Churches seek to establish full unity, and stressed that he has come to this conclusion based on the fraternal dialogue and the meetings that they have held with representatives of the Catholic Church.

If Benedict XVI and Orthodox Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia were to meet, it would be a first for the two pastors of Rome and Moscow.

Metropolitan Filaret's statements coincide with the announcement of the "Days of Russian Culture and Spirituality in the Vatican," which will be held May 19-20, and which will culminate with a concert offered to Benedict XVI by Kirill I.

The musical event will include compositions of Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, president of the Department for Foreign Relations of the Patriarchy of Moscow.

On Wednesday, Metropolitan Filaret visited the Holy Shroud of Turin and Cardinal Severino Poletto, archbishop of Turin.

"The impression is so profound that one cannot express the joy one feels," commented the Orthodox representative after seeing the Shroud.

Metropolitan Filaret, in this post since 1978, received the recognition of "Hero of Belarus" in 2006, by decision of president Alexander Lukashenko, in recognition of the service to the spirituality of his country.

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Sunday, November 22, 2009

Our Lady of Guadalupe - Feast Day Celebrated December 12

Our Lady of Guadalupe (Spanish: Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe) is a celebrated 16th-century icon of the Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ. The image, also known as the Virgin of Guadalupe (Spanish: Virgen de Guadalupe) represents a famous Marian apparition. According to the traditional account, the image appeared miraculously on the front of a simple peasant's cloak. The image still exists; it is on display in the Basilica of Guadalupe in Mexico City. It is perhaps Mexico's most popular religious and cultural image, and the focus of an extensive pilgrimage. The feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe is December 12. She is said to have appeared to Saint Juan Diego on the hill of Tepeyac near Mexico City between December 9 and December 12, 1531.

The Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Dover, NJ, has a beautiful replica painting on display of Our Lady of Guadalupe. I photographed the picture during my visit to the church.

Photograph Copyright 2009 Loci B. Lenar

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pope Benedict XVI establishes structure for Anglicans uniting with Rome

The following story by Cindy Wooden appears on the Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Benedict XVI has established a special structure for Anglicans who want to be in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church while preserving aspects of their Anglican spiritual and liturgical heritage, said U.S. Cardinal William J. Levada.

The cardinal, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, said a new apostolic constitution would establish "personal ordinariates" -- similar to dioceses -- to oversee the pastoral care of those who want to bring elements of their Anglican identity into the Catholic Church with them.

Anglican priests who are married may be ordained Catholic priests, but married Anglican bishops will not be able to function as Catholic bishops in keeping with the long-standing Catholic and Orthodox tradition of ordaining only unmarried clergy as bishops, Cardinal Levada said.

The cardinal announced the new arrangement at a press conference Oct. 20 at the Vatican. He said the pope's apostolic constitution and norms for implementing it were undergoing final revisions and would be published in a couple of weeks.

In establishing the new jurisdictions, Pope Benedict is responding to "many requests" submitted by individual Anglicans and by Anglican groups -- including "20 to 30 bishops" -- asking to enter into full communion with the Catholic Church, the cardinal said.

At the same time, Cardinal Levada said the new provision does not weaken the commitment of the Vatican to promoting Christian unity, but is a recognition that many Anglicans share the Catholic faith and that Anglicans have a spiritual and liturgical life worth preserving.

"It has always been the principal aim -- the principal aim -- to achieve the full, visible unity" of the Catholic Church and Anglican Communion, the cardinal said.

But given recent changes within many Anglican provinces with the ordination of women priests and bishops and the acceptance of homosexuality in some areas, the prospect of full unity "seemed to recede," he said.

The church recognizes and welcomes those Anglicans who fully share the Catholic faith, agree with the Catholic view that only men can be ordained priests and recognize the role of the bishop of Rome -- the pope -- as the sign and guarantor of church unity, he said.

At a press conference in London Oct. 20, Anglican Archbishop Rowan Williams of Canterbury, head of the Anglican Communion, and Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster, president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales, issued a joint statement saying the new provisions are a recognition of "the substantial overlap in faith, doctrine and spirituality between the Catholic Church and the Anglican tradition."

"Without the dialogues of the past 40 years, this recognition would not have been possible, nor would hopes for full visible unity have been nurtured," the two leaders said.

Archbishop Williams told reporters that some members of the Church of England are uneasy about positions their church is taking, yet they would not want to become Roman Catholic.

"This will not resolve their challenges, and we in the Church of England have to continue to engage with that," he said.

Cardinal Levada told reporters he met personally Oct. 19 with Archbishop Williams, who had been told about the new arrangement a month earlier.

In a letter to top Anglican leaders, Archbishop Williams said, "In the light of recent discussions with senior officials in the Vatican, I can say that this new possibility is in no sense at all intended to undermine existing relations between our two communions or to be an act of proselytism or aggression. It is described as simply a response to specific inquiries from certain Anglican groups and individuals wishing to find their future within the Roman Catholic Church."

"For those who wish to enter into full communion with the Roman Catholic Church in the near future, this announcement will clarify possible options, and we wish them God's strength and guidance in their discernment," the Anglican leader said.

Cardinal Levada also said Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, had been informed about the pope's decision.

Asked Oct. 15 about the possible entrance of groups of former Anglicans into the Catholic Church, Cardinal Kasper said, "We are not fishing in the Anglican lake; proselytism is not the policy of the Catholic Church. But if there are people who, obeying their consciences, want to become Catholic, we cannot shut the door."

U.S. Archbishop J. Augustine Di Noia, secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments and former undersecretary of the doctrinal congregation, spoke at the press conference with Cardinal Levada.

"We have been praying for unity for 40 years. We find now that the prayers we have had are being answered in a way that we did not anticipate. So the Holy Spirit is at work here and the Holy See cannot not respond," the archbishop said.

In 1993 the Catholic bishops of England and Wales asked the Vatican not to implement special structures for former Anglicans in their country, saying that the formation of Anglican-identity Catholic parishes would only further fracture the Christian community and would make the eventual unity of the Catholic Church and Anglican Communion more difficult.

Participants in the Anglican-Roman Catholic dialogue also have expressed concern in the past that the movement of Catholics to the Anglican Communion is making the Anglican Communion more liberal, while the movement of Anglicans to the Catholic Church is making the Catholic community more conservative.

Archbishop Di Noia said, "The ecumenical movement has changed. There has been a tremendous shift" in the prospects for full, complete union.

Many Anglicans already consider themselves to be Catholic, Archbishop Di Noia said, and the pope's new initiative will make "explicit the bond that is already implicit."

In 1980 the Vatican made a special pastoral provision for members of the Episcopal Church, the U.S. province of the Anglican Communion, who wanted to become Catholic after the Episcopalians began ordaining women priests. The provision included permission for entire parishes of former Episcopalians to use elements of their liturgy in the Catholic Mass.

Archbishop Di Noia said only a handful of parishes took advantage of that special permission, and in 2003 the Vatican approved "The Book of Divine Worship" for their liturgical use.

But he said many of those now seeking communion with Rome wanted a stronger affirmation of their Anglican heritage and a guarantee that it would continue to have a place in the Catholic Church, which is why the pope ordered the establishment of personal ordinariates.

The number of ordinariates and their headquarters will be determined by the number of Anglicans seeking full communion, Cardinal Levada said. The head of each ordinariate will be a former Anglican clergyman, who will not necessarily be ordained a Catholic bishop.

New priests for the ordinariates will study in seminaries with other Catholic seminarians, but an ordinariate can "establish a house of formation to address the particular needs of formation in the Anglican patrimony," Cardinal Levada said.

In general, married Anglican priests and bishops who become Catholic will be ordained Catholic priests, as will married Anglican seminarians, he said.

But an unmarried man ordained a Catholic priest will not be permitted to marry, and the pope's apostolic constitution will state a clear preference for a celibate clergy, Archbishop Di Noia said.

Cardinal Levada told reporters that he realizes "for some people it seems to be a problem" that the Vatican is allowing married former Anglicans to be ordained Catholic priests, but will not allow Catholic priests who have left to marry to return to ministry.

"They are two different circumstances," the cardinal said. Respecting "the authenticity of the call to service" of Anglican clergy who were married when they came to the decision to become Catholic is different from the case of "a Catholic who knowingly commits to a celibate priesthood and then decides for different reasons to leave the priesthood for married life."

"I do not think it is an insurmountable problem," Cardinal Levada said, adding that the church needs to educate Catholics that the dispensation for former Anglican clergy is an exception and that the church continues to uphold the virtue of celibacy.


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Friday, August 21, 2009

Infant Jesus of Prague

The following prayers to the Infant Jesus are found on Catholic websites and are used for petitioning for help in financial matters, health, family, schools, children, liberty and peace, and for safety while traveling. Please visit The League of the Miraculous Infant Jesus of Prague for history regarding devotion to the Divine Child.

Novena to the Infant Jesus of Prague in Urgent Need
(To be said for nine days or nine consecutive hours)

O Jesus, Who said, "Ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find, knockand it shall be opened to you," through the intercession of Mary, Your most holy Mother,I knock, I seek, I ask that my prayer be answered.
(Mention your request.)

O Jesus, Who said, "All that you ask of the Father in My Name He will grant you," through the intercession of Mary, Your most holy Mother, I humbly and urgently ask Your Father in Your Name that my prayer be granted.
(Mention your request.)

O Jesus, Who said, "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My word shall not pass,"through the intercession of Mary, Your most holy Mother,I feel confident that my prayer will be granted.
(Mention your request.)


Prayer to the Miraculous Infant Jesus of Prague

To the Venerable Father F. Cyril OCD

O Infant Jesus, I have recourse to You and ask You through the intercession of Your Holy Mother to help me in my need, ( mention it here) for I firmly believe that Your Divinity can help me.

I hope, in complete trust, to obtain Your holy grace. I love You with all my heart and with all the strength of my soul. I am truly sorry for all my sins, and beg You, O good Jesus, to give me strength to conquer them. I shall never offend You and I am ready to suffer rather than to cause You pain.

From now on I want to serve with complete faithfulness and for love of You, O Divine Child, I will love my neighbour as well as myself. Omnipotent Child, Lord Jesus, again I implore You, help me in this need of mine (mention it).

Grant me the grace of possessing You eternally, with Mary and Joseph and of adoring You with the holy angels in Your heavenly court. Amen

The stained glass window of the Infant Jesus of Prague is found inside Saint Mary's Church, Myers Avenue, Denville, New Jersey, USA

Photograph Copyright 2009 Loci B. Lenar

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Prayer Before a Crucifix

Prayer Before a Crucifix

Look down upon me, good and gentle Jesus,
while before Your face I humbly kneel and,
with burning soul,
pray and beseech You
to fix deep in my heart lively sentiments
of faith, hope and charity;
true contrition for my sins,
and a firm purpose of amendment.
While I contemplate,
with great love and tender pity,
Your five most precious wounds,
pondering over them within me
and calling to mind the words which David,
Your prophet, said of You, my Jesus:

"They have pierced My hands and My feet,
they have numbered all My bones."


Photographed inside the prayer room of Sacred Heart Church,
Dover, NJ, USA.

Photo Copyright 2009 Loci B. Lenar

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Intercessory Prayer Responsible for Miraculous Recovery?

Healed by monk’s divine intervention?

Peter Andersen (left) began to recover from flesh-eating disease after Rev. John Horgan put a relic of Blessed Marmion on his head, heart and diseased leg.

Photograph by Bill Keay, Vancouver Sun

The following excerpt is from an article by Gerry Bellett of The Vancouver Sun:

VANCOUVER - Rev. John Horgan knew a dying man when he saw one. Years of working as a chaplain in Vancouver General and St. Paul’s hospitals had seen to that.

So when he saw Peter Andersen in Vancouver General’s intensive care unit on the afternoon of July 3, 2008, he didn’t need anyone to tell him that Andersen’s situation was grave. His blood stream was teeming with the bacteria from two flesh-eating diseases: myositis, which attacks the muscles, and necrotizing fasciitis, which invades the flesh beneath the skin.

Andersen, on life support, was bloated beyond recognition from septic shock. Whole muscle groups of dead tissue had been stripped away by surgeons from his right leg. His blood pressure was so low it was in the range that indicates imminent death, and his kidneys and other organs had failed.

He appeared to be within hours of dying.

But what happened next is going to lead to a formal investigation by the Catholic Church to determine if the spiritual intervention of an Irish monk who died in 1923 was responsible for a medical miracle.

Because Andersen didn’t die. He made a recovery that at first sight seems to defy medicine and logic.

The canonical investigation of Andersen’s healing will be the first such inquiry ever held in the history of the Vancouver archdiocese — founded in 1863 — and could lead to the canonization of the monk as a saint.

“In fact it will be the first time such an inquiry has been held in Western Canada,” said Horgan, pastor of St. Peter and Paul’s parish in Vancouver.

“It’s extremely rare for this to happen,” he said.

On June 30 last year, Andersen suddenly developed a high fever and complained of a pain in his leg. The next day he asked his wife, Charlene, to call an ambulance when the pain became unbearable.

“I remember them putting me in the ambulance, but after that I lost consciousness for two weeks,” Andersen said.

Except for a brief moment when he remembered receiving communion from Horgan, the rest is just an awful darkness, he said.

For Charlene, it was the beginning of a nightmare. The couple, without children of their own, had a few months earlier adopted two children from the Ukraine.

Until he developed what appeared to be the flu, Peter was a healthy, strapping individual with no health problems, she said.

A day after being admitted to Peace Arch Hospital he was rushed to VGH on life support after multiple organ failure with his body full of flesh-eating-disease bacteria. The overall diagnosis was that he was suffering from streptococcal myonecrosis, and on the charts his doctors had described the extent of the disease as “advanced ... severe ... extensive,” she said.

“The surgeons removed bagfuls of dead tissue and muscle and he’d had two skin grafts. Then he contracted severe septic shock syndrome, which caused his body to bloat like a balloon. I asked them, ‘Can you save him?’ and one surgeon said, ‘We are trying, but no, he’s not going to make it.’ I pleaded with them to take his leg off but they said it was too late for that.”

Charlene sent for Horgan, the couple’s parish priest, who some years before had introduced them to books written by the Irish-French monk Columba Marmion.

Horgan arrived carrying with him a relic of Marmion — a fragment of his monk’s habit. The nurse who met him said there was no hope, but she was glad to see him because he could comfort Charlene.

The priest was gowned and masked and led into intensive care unit.While praying that God would spare his friend’s life for the sake of his wife and their two adopted children, he took the relic and placed it on Andersen’s head, heart and on the dressing covering his diseased leg.

“I asked Blessed Marmion to intercede with the Lord and bring healing,” said Horgan.

At mass the next day he asked the congregation to pray for a miracle for Andersen, “as this was his only hope.”

Charlene didn’t believe her husband would survive: “I was beside myself looking at him. We were new parents, the kids had only arrived in April, and I didn’t know what I would do. I knew he was going to die and I didn’t believe a miracle was going to happen, my faith wasn’t strong enough. The charge nurse told me he was at the point of death.”

But Peter didn’t die that Thursday, or the Friday.

On Saturday, July 5, five days after he fell ill, a male nurse rushed up to Charlene.

“He was really excited. He said, ‘The blood culture’s come back and it’s negative. I’m taking him off life support.’ He pulled the tube out of his mouth and Peter said to me, ‘Can you give me a hug?’”

One his surgeons told Charlene her husband’s recovery was a miracle, another said he was very lucky.

If Andersen’s recovery is declared a miracle through the intercession of Marmion, then the monk will be canonized as a saint. For the Andersens, that would be the icing on the cake. “We’re hoping, too, that he is declared a doctor of the church,” said Charlene.

To read complete story, please visit the following link: Miraculous Recovery

Monday, June 01, 2009

Saint Bernadette's Incorrupt Body a Sign from God

Excerpt from Wikipedia regarding Saint Bernadette:

Bernadette Soubirous - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: "Saint Bernadette (born Maria-Bernada Sobirós (Marie-Bernarde Soubirous)); January 7, 1844 – April 16, 1879), was a miller's daughter from the town of Lourdes in southern France. From February 11 to July 16, 1858, she reported 18 apparitions of 'a small young lady.' Despite initial skepticism from the Roman Catholic Church, these claims were eventually declared to be worthy of belief after a canonical investigation, and the apparition is known as Our Lady of Lourdes. After her death, Bernadette's body reportedly remained incorrupt, and the shrine at Lourdes went on to become a major site for pilgrimage, attracting millions of Catholics each year. On December 8, 1933, she was canonized as a saint by the Catholic Church; her Feast Day is celebrated on April 16."

Excerpt from :

A crystal coffin was made for Saint Bernadette's body. She was placed in a chapel in the Church of St. Gildard at the convent in Nevers where she lived for thirteen years. She has remained undisturbed and on view in this chapel since August 3, 1925. The Sisters of Charity and Christian Instruction at Nevers are not secretive about the body of St. Bernadette. They welcome visitors, and encourage learning about the life example and messages of their sister saint.

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