Monday, September 26, 2016


Cosmas and Damian were brother physicians in the early church, famous for never accepting payment for their work as a way to witness to their deep Christian faith. While most of us need to earn an income off our professional skills, we also can let these saintly brother doctors inspire us to offer our skills in some volunteer or pro bono (for the public good) work. Look for a way to match your skills to society’s needs and volunteer somewhere today.

Sunday, September 25, 2016


Not just another day
“Casual Fridays” began in the 1990s. Employers were trying to improve office morale without spending any money, so workers were permitted to wear jeans, T-shirts, and flip-flops to work. A look at the Communion procession in most contemporary churches this morning would indicate the idea has spread even to Sunday Mass. If formality in church attire has disappeared, what about honoring the day of the Lord by remembering, “Keep holy the Sabbath Day”? Find a way to make Sunday different from other days of the week in your home.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Interesting - LOT Polish Airlines greets 500,000th Boeing 787 passenger

LOT Polish Airlines has greeted its 500,000th Boeing 787 passenger at the Warsaw Chopin Airport with a flash mob performance by artists from the Muzyczny ROMA Theatre.

Maciek Kolodziej, the airline's five hundred thousandth passenger, was taken by surprise as everyone around him broke out into song and dance. After a rendition of ABBA’s Mama Mia in Polish, Kolodzeij was ushered onto a stage where he was given a gift bag and a complimentary cupcake featuring the company’s logo.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Padre Pio's heart on display in US, 1st time outside Italy

The heart of St. Padre Pio will be on display in Massachusetts this week, marking the first time the religious relic has ever left its home in Italy.
The Sun reports ( ) that the heart will be first made available for viewing Wednesday at the Immaculate Conception Church in Lowell.
The Rev. Paul Soper says honoring the relics of saints is ancient practice in the Roman Catholic faith.
St. Padre Pio was a Capuchin friar best known for possessing the Stigmata, or wounds of Jesus Christ.
He died in Foggia, Italy, in 1968 and was canonized by Pope John Paul II in 2002. The body of St. Padre Pio is believed to be partially incorrupt.
The heart can also be seen at locations in Boston and Braintree this week.
Information from: The (Lowell, Mass.) Sun,

Sunday, September 18, 2016


We pray our faith
Faith is lived. But it’s also prayed. Today Catechetical Sunday considers the theme, “Prayer: the Faith Prayed.” Perhaps the most distinguishing thing we Catholics do is gather to pray: at Mass and sacraments, the blessing before meals, the Liturgy of the Hours, or to share a Rosary. Prayer isn’t always formal or complex. Saint Thérèse of Lisieux called prayer a surge of the heart, a simple look toward heaven. Saint Francis de Sales wittily declared, “Every one of us needs half an hour of prayer each day except when we’re busy—then we need an hour.” Renew your commitment to daily prayer.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

September 17 - St. Robert Belarmine

When Robert Bellarmine was ordained in 1570, the study of Church history and the fathers of the Church was in a sad state of neglect. A promising scholar from his youth in Tuscany, he devoted his energy to these two subjects, as well as to Scripture, in order to systematize Church doctrine against the attacks of the Protestant Reformers. He was the first Jesuit to become a professor at Louvain.
His most famous work is his three-volume Disputations on the Controversies of the Christian Faith. Particularly noteworthy are the sections on the temporal power of the pope and the role of the laity. He incurred the anger of monarchists in England and France by showing the divine-right-of-kings theory untenable. He developed the theory of the indirect power of the pope in temporal affairs; although he was defending the pope against the Scottish philosopher Barclay, he also incurred the ire of Pope Sixtus V.

Bellarmine was made a cardinal by Pope Clement VIII on the grounds that "he had not his equal for learning." While he occupied apartments in the Vatican, Bellarmine relaxed none of his former austerities. He limited his household expenses to what was barely essential, eating only the food available to the poor. He was known to have ransomed a soldier who had deserted from the army and he used the hangings of his rooms to clothe poor people, remarking, "The walls won't catch cold."

Among many activities, he became theologian to Pope Clement VIII, preparing two catechisms which have had great influence in the Church.

The last major controversy of Bellarmine's life came in 1616 when he had to admonish his friend Galileo, whom he admired. Bellarmine delivered the admonition on behalf of the Holy Office, which had decided that the heliocentric theory of Copernicus (the sun as stationary) was contrary to Scripture. The admonition amounted to a caution against putting forward—other than as a hypothesis—theories not yet fully proved. This shows that saints are not infallible.

Bellarmine died on September 17, 1621. The process for his canonization was begun in 1627 but was delayed until 1930 for political reasons, stemming from his writings. In 1930, Pope Pius XI canonized him and the next year declared him a doctor of the Church.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross

When Jesus was put on the cross to die, his punishment was intended to humiliate him and his followers and to extinguish his message once and for all. But that didn’t happen. Instead, he rose from the dead, exalted by the Father, and his Good News has been shared on every continent for more than 2,000 years. Today, crosses grace our churches and homes. We even wear crosses as jewelry that identifies us as believers. The name of this feast says it well: The cross is a sign of exaltation. When you rise in the morning and retire at night, make the sign of the cross.

Monday, September 12, 2016


At Jesus’ conception Mary’s good name (and her life) would be in jeopardy should it become known that she was pregnant while unmarried. Yet her name falls upon us today not as disgrace, but as all grace. Just speaking her name—often in the prayer “Hail Mary”—brings comfort to many in dire straits. Another traditional prayer, the Memorare, says, “never was it known that anyone who fled to your protection, implored your help, or sought your intercession was left unaided.” Call upon Mary. She has been there, and she hears you.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Pope Francis accepts gift of potholder from Hingham child

By Reenat Sinay Globe Correspondent 
A Hingham couple on a religious pilgrimage to the Vatican was lucky enough not only to spot Pope Francis, but to watch his face light up as he received a gift from their daughter.
“I cried, I absolutely cried, I honestly could not believe it,” said Maura Naughton. “I never in a million years thought that I could actually get something to him.”

Naughton and her husband Laurence arrived in Rome Tuesday with a group of more than 30 others from the Boston area. They attended a general audience with the pope on Wednesday.
“As soon as we told our children that we were going to Rome for an audience with the pope, our 9-year-old, Megan, said ‘I’m going to make the pope some presents,’” Naughton said.
Megan, who goes to St. Paul Parish in Hingham, chose to go the practical route and made Francis a potholder.
“It came from place of such innocence and sweetness and hope,” said Naughton. “She thought we’d walk right up to the pope and give it to him.”
However, the pontiff’s weekly general audiences regularly draw crowds in the thousands and last just two hours.
“I was in a line 5 feet deep behind another line of people who get to shake hands with him,” Naughton said.
As luck would have it, the Naughtons were standing next to an Italian couple who was able to pass the gift to a priest in the line ahead of them.
“He looked at us like we were crazy and took the potholder,” she said. “He gave it to the pope and pointed back at me, and the pope held it up and smiled and waved.”
Naughton said that by this time “he had been given so many gold chalices” and other gifts, that “for him to take the time to hold up this gift made by a child was so special.”
He “looked joyful and happy and very genuine,” she added. “It was a moment in time that you can’t recreate, something none of us will ever forget.”
The Naughtons broke the news to Megan Wednesday and said she was “very excited.”
Wednesday also happened to be Naughton’s 46th birthday, and she says she could not have asked for a better gift.
“It was divine intervention that I was next to these people,” she said. “It was quite a birthday present.”
Reenat Sinay can be reached at

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Honest liars

By providing content, resources, and connections, Dr. Cortney Warren's goal is to support anyone who is brave enough to live a more conscious life. For when we are honest about who we really are, we have the opportunity to change.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

A gang leaders moment with Mother Theresa

Copied from the Chicago Sun times.
Article byMitch Dudek  @mitchdudek | email

Before Mother Teresa grabbed his hand, perhaps the most powerful thing Demetrius Ford ever held was a gun.
Ford ran a street gang out of the Henry Horner Homes, a cluster of high rise housing projects located in the shadow of what is now the United Center. Warring street gangs regularly shot at each other from adjacent buildings.
“We were shooting from building to building. Kids couldn’t go outside. I couldn’t even go out to the store without somebody going with me with two or three guns for protection,” Ford recalled last week.
“I had to tell two or three hundred guys a day what to do. It was just really, really dangerous and there was a lot of hits out to kill me and I was giving hits on the opposition,” he said.
A few feet from the violence plagued buildings was St. Malachy’s Church, where, as the gang wars played out next door, a parish priest wrote Mother Teresa a letter asking for help. In response, she sent four nuns to the church to establish a soup kitchen there in 1983.
A few months later, a priest from the church who’d come to know Ford gave him a job doing odd jobs, like cooking, cleaning and handy work around the rectory.
Ford was ready for a change. He was in his early 20s and a lot of people were dying around him.
“But in the gang thing, you can’t just walk away,” he said.
Through the church, he began to organize peaceful barbecues and dances for youth in the neighborhood. However, most attendees, at first at least, also came from the same gang.
Ford was at the church in 1985 when word spread that Mother Teresa was coming to Chicago to visit. Ford was 22 years old the day she arrived.
He, along with a priest, found a spot on the landing of a staircase Mother Teresa would be walking down.
“She saw us and she stopped,” Ford said. “She grabbed my hand, and I’m all nervous. People taking pictures. And she said ‘Let me pray for you.’ And so I was like ‘Wow, you know I need to be praying for you.’ And she said. ‘No. Let me pray for you.’ And she grabbed my hands in hers and everything got quiet. And that was like the changing point in my life. I was like really feeling down and low. I was running from the police at the time and there were a million awful things going on in my life. And at that moment I just felt relief.” he said.
“The funny thing was she had kneeled down, and her being older, I tried to help her up because I didn’t know what she was doing,” Ford recalled.
A couple of days later, Ford, while working in the rectory, encountered Mother Teresa again. This time she was alone in the kitchen area. Ford served her a cup of coffee before she was to meet with the pastor and the two chatted for a minute.
“She told me I was going to be a changed person. That God is calling me. He’s waiting on me. That a lot of people are going to follow me. That I got a good heart and God just wants me to do the right thing because I can bring a lot of people to Christ. I was sitting here crying and stuff and she got to crying and she kept saying it was okay and God has a hand on me. She was telling me something about a black cloud was following me, which was the enemy, which was the devil I guess, and that he’s pulling on me at the same time, but God is going to have his way and she told me just keep praying.
“And then even when the pastor came she kept looking back at me and I brought her another cup of coffee and she grabbed my hand again and said ‘Let me pray for you.'”
A few months later, with the help of a youth minister from the church, Ford signed on to a truce between the feuding gangs that helped end the shooting.
That was 31 years ago. Ford is now 53. He’s good with his hands and does construction jobs when he can find them, like dry-walling or installing windows. He never married or had kids. He stays with family members mostly.
He’s confident Mother Teresa would be proud of how he’s lived since their encounter.
“She’d be proud. I stayed alive. I did get out of the gang. I pray every night. I be myself now. She showed me that. And kindness motivates me now.”
“Before I was terrible. It was the card we was dealt being born and raised in the projects. My older brothers was gang-bangers and so I was trying to hold up a name, a legend that was going on for years and years, and it was the thing to do back then. If you weren’t a part of it, you were nothing.”
Ford said his life now is up and down.
“My life still has a lot of turmoil here and there. But I don’t really go to jail anymore, I don’t gang bang any more. I don’t be out on the street getting drunk all night messing with the girls all night any more. I try to live more of a stable life. But, once again, it’s off and on. Ain’t nothing perfect.
“I’m looking for a good job and just hoping things get better. I don’t have a house or a car or other things people strive for, but I’m happy with who I am.  And I always think about Mother Teresa to know that she touched my hand and prayed for me and she showed that she really cared for me and there was no strings attached, that’s something that I’ll never forget, and I feel blessed, not more than anyone else, but I feel blessed, just to serve her a cup of coffee was a privilege. That was something to always feel good about.”
Ford’s life might have gone another direction had he not met Mother Teresa.
“I might be dead or locked up or doing some crazy s—,” he said.
“l really believe she’s a saint and I really believe she’s watching over me. I believe in spirits and they really watch you and try to lead you in the right direction. When you touch someone’s hand and they pray for you, it’s a connection that cannot be broken. Her spirit will always be with me.”

Saturday, September 3, 2016

If we could see inside others hearts

Every day, every moment, is an oppportunity to let go of what no longer serves us and let it die...
And to embrace what brings out the best in ourselves and others.

Today's video, "If We Could See Inside Each Others' Hearts" is an opportunity to do that.

It is a profound look at life, in 4 minutes. This one will have you welling up with tears as the camera wanders and shows the inner lives of people around us as they do their daily tasks. Most of it is set in a hospital, where there is so much worry, sadness, some joy, bad news, good news, no news, anxiety, fear -- just like our own lives...

We’ve all been there. We've all experienced at least one of these people’s lives, and that's what brings the message of this video so close to home.
We ALL have our stories. Others have theirs.  But we never really know, we don't fully connect, because most of us walk around keeping most of our thoughts and feelings to ourselves.


If we could see inside other peoples' hearts, this is what we'd see..