Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Marianist Service

Our Marianist high schools have developed a special relationship with the Little Sisters of the Poor over the last 25 years.

Yearly we collect toiletries for the elderly poor who reside at Queen of Peace Residence in Queens Village, NY.

This year our camera crew ventured over to Queens Village on Veteran's Day and compiled this short video to encourage our students to participate in our Annual Appeal.

 Many thanks to those who assisted in contributing to the elderly of Queen of Peace Residence.

 And to those who still want to contribute ! That can be done my dropping off items at our two high schools or at Queen of Peace.

Many thanks!

Queen of Peace 2016 from Kellenberg Memorial Video Produc on Vimeo.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

The Sunday Word

Today we’re at the first Sunday in Advent. This is a season of preparation. Our second reading is Romans 13:11-14 in which are embedded not only images of moving from darkness to light, from slumber to awareness, but both negative and positive instructions.

On the one hand, we’re advised to be aware of the destructive behaviors that do nothing but “gratify the flesh,” rather than nurturing the spirit. The apostle Paul uses words like “darkness,” “reveling,” “drunkenness,” “debauchery,” “licentiousness,” “quarreling” and “jealousy.”

One would hope that as we prepare for the coming of the Christ child, we would need neither a “sin patch” nor a skin patch to alert us to these kinds of behaviors, and that we would understand how inappropriate these actions are for anyone who wishes to visit the manger at Bethlehem.

On the other hand, we’re encouraged to “put on the Lord Jesus” — a clothing metaphor which is a favorite of the Apostle Paul, who was quite aware that there are too many wardrobe malfunctions among the people of God. “Put off, therefore,” he would say, “the garments of unrighteousness.” And here, as elsewhere, he says, “Put on the Lord Jesus.”

Christ Jesus — our Advent patch. The Advent Person. The Advent Reminder. This season is about Him. It is not about us. It is a time to “wake from sleep” and “lay aside the works of darkness” because “the day is near.”

Instead of a “sin patch,” Paul advocates a different therapeutic model — to put on “the armor of light” and “the Lord Jesus Christ.” In other words, Paul urges his readers to get “patched up” and prepared for a life lived in and for the in-breaking kingdom, rather than to continue in the sins of the past. Rather than behaving in a way that sends out the signals of sin, Paul argues that we “put on the Lord Jesus” and thereby send out signals of righteousness.

While we expend a lot of effort to keep our “real” selves a secret from those around us, we need to remember that God has already been engaged in continuous monitoring of our souls — no “sin patch” necessary. The One who created us always knows the truth of what’s flowing back and forth inside us, whether it’s healthy or diseased, sober or soused.

Other people will figure us out, too, by watching us over a period of time. Keeping secrets, particularly ones involving our own behavior, is a full-time job. As Thomas Carlyle, the 19th-century British sage, once noted, “He who has a secret should not only hide it, but hide that he has it to hide.” With all that “hiding” going on, it’s no wonder that, somehow, even our best-kept secrets eventually see the light of day.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Prayerful Thoughts

before I bake a pie or stuff a turkey this week,
I want to take some time to ponder
all my reasons to be grateful...

Help me remember, by name,
the most important people in my life,
on whom I depend for so many things,
who support, comfort and challenge me,
who help me make it day to day
and through the night,
one day at a time...

Help me remember, one by one,
all the gifts I have:
the gifts of faith and hope and love,
the gifts of wonder, tears and laughter,
the gifts of friendship and affection,
the gifts of peace and quiet
and the gift and grace of prayer...

Help me remember, Lord,
all my talents and my skills:
the ones I use every day,
and the ones I hide from others,
the ones I need to learn to share...

Help me remember
what I often take for granted:
my liberty and freedom,
the right to speak and write and vote,
the opportunity to seek my heart's desire
and to go where you may call me...

Help me remember all that I've forgotten,
all I should be grateful for,
all for which I owe you thanks and praise...

Help me remember, Lord,
so that on Thanksgiving I'll know why
I bow my head in prayer and whisper,
"Thank you, Lord my God!"

Friday, November 25, 2016

A Prayer at an Empty Chair

A Prayer at an Empty Chair

The Empty Chair by Dena Cardwell

For those grieving the loss of a loved one, Thanksgiving and "the holidays" can be a particularly difficult time. Anticipation of these special days begins early and so I'm posting this prayer today, a week ahead of Thanksgiving Day...

A Prayer at an Empty Chair

This Thanksgiving, Lord,
there’ll be an empty chair at our table,
an ache in our hearts
and tears on our cheeks...

We might shield others from our grief
but we can't hide it from you...

We pray for (name your loved ones)
whose loving presence we'll miss
at this homecoming time...

Help us remember and tell again
the stories that knit us as one
with the ones we miss so much...

Open our hearts to joyful memories
of the love we shared
with those who've gone before us...

Let the bonds you forged so deep in our hearts
grow stronger yet
in remembering those who've left our side...

Help us pray and trust that those we miss
have a home in your heart
and a place at your table forever
and that one day we'll be one with them
once again...

Teach us to lean on you and on one another
for the strength we need
to walk through these difficult days...

Open our eyes and our hearts
to the healing, the warmth
and the peace of your presence...

Give us quiet moments with you in prayer,
with our memories and loss,
with our thoughts and tears...

Be with us to console us
and hold us in your arms
as you hold the ones we miss...

Even in our grief, Lord,
this is the day that you have made:
help us be glad in the peace you've promised,
the peace we pray you share
with those who've gone before us...

For ourselves, Lord,
and for all who find the holidays to be a difficult time,
we make this prayer...

Prayer can provide a path through these days as well as opportunities for acceptance, healing and helping one another. You might pray this alone as Thanksgiving approaches or print it, forward, share and post it for others who might find it helpful...

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Proclamation

Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favor, able interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquillity, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted; for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

Go. Washington

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Marianist Bicentential

Web banner 1

Founders 200 web

Bicentennial Prayer

Gracious and loving God,
God of our founders,
you have blessed us with 200 years
of mission and mercy.
Lead us on, Lord.
Make us good stewards
and attentive listeners,
ready to do whatever you tell us
to accomplish Mary’s mission
in our world today.
With great thanksgiving
and loving praise,
we say Amen.
May the Father, and the Son
and the Holy Spirit, 

be glorified in all places
through the
Immaculate Virgin Mary.
Prayer by
Sr. Laura Leming, FMI

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Marianist Sisters Celebrate

Adèle de Trenquelléon
Adèle de Trenquelléon
On May 25, 1816, in the town of Agen, France, a young woman of aristocratic birth consecrated her life to the Blessed Virgin in a new and powerful way.
On that day 200 years ago, Adèle de Batz de Trenquelléon established the Filles de Marie Immaculée, the Daughters of Mary Immaculate, whom we know as the Marianist Sisters.
Adèle felt called to religious life at an early age. Through a fortuitous series of circumstances, Adèle came into contact with a priest named William Joseph Chaminade.
Adèle and Chaminade were kindred spirits. Both had dedicated their lives to God and their talents to rebuilding the Church in France in the wake of the revolution.
With the support of Fr. Chaminade and in the company of Marie Thérèse Charlotte de Lamourous and a small group of women, Adèle initiated this new community to carry out the “mission of Mary.”
Today, Marianist Sisters minister in 14 countries across the globe. They serve in education, pastoral ministry, retreat leadership and social justice, touching the lives of thousands of God’s children every day.

The Marianist Sisters first came to the United States in 1948. Marie Abmayr was the first U.S.-born sister. She is shown taking vows as a postulant in 1949. Fr. William Lamm, SM, received her vows. Today, Sr. Marie lives in Dayton.

Family Online
Volume 15, Number 5

May 5, 2016

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Marianists and Blessed Chaminade

Image result for Blessed Chaminade
Blessed William Joseph Chaminade based his doctrine of Mary’s Apostolic Mission on the foundational doctrines of the Mystical Body of Christ, and of Mary’s Spiritual Maternity, Coredemption, and distribution of all graces. 
In his own words: 

Christ has ordained all concerns of religion that Mary participated and cooperated in all of them. 

We do not go to Mary as our God, but we go to God through Mary, as faith tells us. He came to us through her.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Marianists and Mission

Image result for Province of meribah
A Community in Mission 

In communities inspired by faith, 
we seek to live like the first community of Jerusalem, 
having but one heart and one soul. 
Thus we hope to bear witness 
to the presence of Christ 
and to show that still today the gospel 
can be lived in all the force of its letter and spirit. 
We find inspiration in Mary's words 
to the servants at Cana: "Do whatever He tells you." 
We remain open as a Society 
to all means of evangelization 
and we dedicate ourselves 
to the apostolic activities 
to which Providence calls us, 
according to the needs of time and place. 

Like the Word Incarnate, 
we strive to be at one with the people of our time 
and to share their joy and hope, their grief and anguish. 
However, we remember the Lord's warning 
to remain vigilant so that the norms, 
customs, and habits of the world 
will not tarnish or weaken the power of his word. 
This concern to be faithful witnesses 
is particularly needful for a community 
which wishes to bring to the world the liberation of Jesus Christ. 
The more attentive our watchfulness, the greater our apostolic boldness.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Mary & Marianists

Image result for our lady of good counsel meribah
Mary in Our Life

By the gift of faith, 
the Virgin Mary totally opened herself 
to the mission the Father 
gave her in his plan of salvation. 

Jesus was formed in her by the Holy Spirit. 
He willed her to be the promised Woman, 
sharing in all his mysteries. 

When his hour had come, 
he proclaimed her our Mother. 

Like the beloved disciple, 
we accept Mary 
as a precious gift of God. 
Moved by Jesus' love for his Mother, 
we dedicate ourselves to her 
so that the Holy Spirit, 
in whose action she cooperates 
with a mother's love, 
may form us more fully to the image of her Son. 

By our alliance with Mary, 
we seek to assist her 
in her mission of forming 
in faith a multitude of brothers 
for her first-born Son. 

In Mary is summed up the longing 
and searching of the whole human race for God: 
she is the first among those 
who believe in Jesus Christ 
and the first to be saved from evil and death. 

She shows us the way of true Christian life. 
Following her example of faith, 
poverty of spirit, and attentiveness to the Lord, 
we hope to reflect to those around us 
Mary's warmth of welcome to God and to others. 
Like her, we wholly commit ourselves 
to the mystery of our vocation.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Papal Meditations

Pope Francis began his homily by saying that if we want to be good and faithful servants of the Lord, we must guard against dishonestly and the pursuit of power. But how often, he said, do we see or hear ourselves saying, even in our own homes, that “I’m in charge here?” Jesus taught us that leaders are those who serve others, and if we want to be first, we must become the servant of all. The Pope stressed that Jesus turns the values of our world upside-down, showing that the search for power is an obstacle to becoming a servant of the Lord

A second obstacle, he continued, is dishonesty which can also be found in the life of the Church. Jesus told us that we cannot serve two masters – God and money, the Pope warned, so we have to choose to serve one or the other. Dishonesty, he continued, is not just being a sinner, since we are all sinners and can repent of those sins. But dishonesty, he said, is being duplicitous and playing one hand off against the other, playing the ‘God’ card and the ‘world’ card at the same time.

These obstacles of dishonesty and the pursuit of power, the Pope said, take away our peace of mind and leave us anxious, with an ‘itch’ in our hearts. In this way, he said, we live in constant tension, concerned only about appearances and the worldly desires of fame and fortune. We cannot serve the Lord like this, he insisted, so we ask to be freed from these obstacles in order that we may find serenity of body and mind.

We are not slaves, but children of God, Pope Francis said, and when we serve Him freely we feel deep peace in our hearts. We hear the voice of the Lord calling “Come, come, come, good and faithful servant”. We all want to be faithful servants of the Lord, he said, but we cannot do it on our own and so we ask God for the grace to overcome these obstacles and to serve Him freely with peace in our hearts.

Pope Francis concluded by saying we must constantly remind ourselves that we are unworthy servants, unable to do anything on our own. Instead, he said, we must ask God to open our hearts and let the Spirit in, to remove these obstacles and to transform us into children whose hearts are free to serve the Lord.

(from Vatican Radio)

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

The SundayWord

Image result for establish the kingdom of godFriends, today in the Gospel Jesus describes the world’s violent resistance to the establishment of God’s kingdom. From the earliest days until the present, the community of Jesus Christ has been the focus of the world’s violence. There is the old principle: “Kill the messenger,” and it applies here. The Church will announce, until the end of time, that the old world is passing away, that a new world of love, non-violence, and life is emerging. This announcement always infuriates the world of sin—always.

The twentieth century proved this by being the bloodiest on record, and the century with the most martyrs. Jesus promises to give us “a wisdom in speaking that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute.” What do we do in the meantime? We maintain a detachment from this world which is passing away, our eyes fixed on the world that will never end. And we speak—confidently, boldly, provocatively—the message of the Gospel, the dying and rising of the Lord.”

- Bishop Robert Barron

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Marianists in Honolulu

FamilyOnline is featuring occasional peeks into the past to celebrate the bicentennials of the Daughters of Mary Immaculate and the Society of Mary, .

This photo was titled “Cleveland’s Victory” and shows Marianists in Honolulu presumably celebrating the election of Grover Cleveland. Cleveland was the only U.S. president who served non-consecutive terms, being elected in 1884 and 1892. This photo is likely from the latter election, although it’s not clear why the berobed brother in the middle grasps a mallet, or why two others wield feather dusters. Perhaps presidential elections were immoderate affairs even back then.
These brothers would have been teachers at St. Louis College, which is now Saint Louis School. Photo from the collection of the National Archives of the Marianist Province of the United States.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Strengthen them in every good work and word.

Image result for brothers in christ

This past Sunday Saint Paul assures the Thessalonians that they are on the right track. He describes them as "brothers and sisters beloved by the Lord," and he tells them that God chose them "as the first fruits for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and through belief in the truth."  He encourages them to "stand firm and hold fast to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by our letter."  And he closes by asking Jesus and God to comfort their hearts "and strengthen them in every good work and word."

Saint Paul's words are meant for us, as well as for the Thessalonians. We live in a world in which God's justice will be done, and we all need to watch our works and our words.

Our challenge is to "stand firm and hold fast to the traditions" of the faith (v. 15). These traditions include:

Seeing everyone as a person made in the image and likeness of God.

Loving our neighbors as ourselves.

Turning the other cheek.

Refraining from judgment and practicing forgiveness.

Owing no one anything, except to love one another.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Veterans Day

We ask for blessings on all those who have served their country in the armed forces.
We ask for healing for the veterans who have been wounded, in body and soul, 
in conflicts around the globe.
We pray especially for the young men and women, in the thousands, 
who are coming home from Iraq with injured bodies and traumatized spirits.
Bring solace to them, O Lord; may we pray for them when they cannot pray.
We ask for an end to wars and the dawning of a new era of peace,
As a way to honor all the veterans of past wars.
Have mercy on all our veterans from World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq,
Bring peace to their hearts and peace to the regions they fought in. 

Bless all the soldiers who served in non-combative posts;
May their calling to service continue in their lives in many positive ways.
Give us all the creative vision to see a world which, grown weary with fighting,
Moves to affirming the life of every human being and so moves beyond war.
Hear our prayer, O Prince of Peace, hear our prayer


Sunday, November 6, 2016

Venerable Faustino Perez - Postulant of the Marianists

Among the younger readers of "My Ideal, Jesus, Son of Mary," in 1961, was a fourteen year old Spanish youngster, Faustino Perez-Manglano. In his diary he wrote: “After having read a quarter hour of My Ideal, Jesus, Son of Mary, I became conscious of the marvelous beauty of this book. No words can express the greatness of its content. How marvelous is my mother Mary! This book teaches me how to increase my love for Jesus, for Mary, and for the persons who are dearest to me, my dad and my mom.”

Faustino died, with all the signs of holiness, in 1963, barely sixteen. Father José Maria Salaverri, S.M., the  author of a biography of Faustino, commented, My Ideal, Jesus, Son of Mary, "had helped this young man become holy."

Faustino has now been granted the title “Venerable.” Faustino will continue to serve as a fitting role-model, particularly for young people. 

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Marianist Sants

Candidates for Sainthood

According to Marianist Father Antonio Soldà, the canonization of saints reminds the faithful that “God does marvelous things, above all through poor instruments like us when we put ourselves in His hands.”

Beatification enables a candidate for sainthood to be honored as “Blessed.”

Blessed William Joseph Chaminade was beatified on Sept. 3, 2000, in Rome.

The other Marianist candidates for sainthood are listed below.


Father William Joseph Chaminade, founder, 1761–1850
Brother Carlos Eraña, Civil War martyr in Ciudad Real, 1884-1936
Brother Jesús Hita, Civil War martyr in Ciudad Real, 1900-1936
Brother Fidel Fuidio, Civil War martyr in Ciudad Real, 1880-1936
Father Jakob Gapp, World War II martyr in Berlin, 1897-1943
Father Miguel Léibar, Civil War martyr in Madrid, 1885-1936
Brother Florencio Arnáiz, Civil War martyr in Madrid, 1909-1936
Brother Joaquín Ochoa, Civil War martyr in Madrid, 1910-1936
Brother Sabino Ayastuy, Civil War martyr in Madrid, 1911-1936

Mother Adèle de Batz de Trenquelléon, founder, 1789-1828
Mademoiselle Marie Thérèse de Lamourous, founder and layperson, 1754-1836
Faustino Pérez-Manglano (consecrated Marianist sodalist), 1946-1963

Servants of God
Father Domingo Lázaro, 1877-1935
Father Vicente Lopez de Uralde, 1894-1990

Friday, November 4, 2016

Heart tunes

Here is a beautiful interpretation of the poetry found in Song of Songs, put to very calming music that pulls at your heartstrings!

Rivers and Robots is an indie worship band from the UK.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

St. Martin de Porres

St. Martin de Porres

For the Province of Meribah, St. Martin de Porres, whose feast we celebrate today plays an important role. Our grade school bears the name of St. Martin de Porres and is the patron. The memory of St. Martin lives on in so many ways.

Saint Martín de Porres was noted for tireless work on behalf of the poor, establishing an orphanage and a children's hospital. He maintained an austere lifestyle, which included fasting and abstaining from meat. His devotion to prayer was notable even by the pious standards of the age. Among the many miracles attributed to him were those of levitation, bilocation, miraculous knowledge, instantaneous cures and an ability to communicate with animals.

St. Martin de Porres became the patron saint of hairdressers because cutting hair was one of the duties he performed for his Brothers in the friary.

St. Martin de Porres was born at Lima, Peru, in 1579. His father was a Spanish gentleman and his mother a black freed-woman from Panama. At fifteen, he became a lay brother at the Dominican Friary at Lima and spent his whole life there - as a barber, farm laborer, and infirmarian among other things.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

All Soul's Day

Reflection for All Souls Day

At the heart of all our worship as Catholic Christians,
we pause to remember…
We remember Christ, and all he did for us;
we remember how he suffered, died and rose for us;
and in word and sacrament,
we remember what he did at table with his friends
on the night before he died.
Every time we celebrate the Eucharist, then,
we remember someone who has died: our brother, Jesus.

And every time we celebrate the Eucharist
we remember others who have died, too.
You know the words as well as I do:
Remember our brothers and sisters
who have gone to their rest in the hope of rising again;
bring them and all the departed into the light of your presence…
We remember all our brothers and sisters in Christ
and not only them but all the departed
- everyone who has died -
and we pray that through the mercy and love of God
every one of them will enjoy the light and peace of God, forever.

Of course, when we pray for those who have died
we remember first those whom we loved the most,
those whom we miss the most.
When I pray the remembrance of the dead,
my heart seldom fails to remember my mother and father:
others, too – but always them.
I’m sure there are names that come to your heart, too.
And we pray for them…

But why do we pray for them?

What do we pray for them?

Our knowledge of human frailty and our faith in God’s mercy
teach us that when we die, God might not be quite yet finished
with fashioning us, making us ready for eternal life.

Our whole life on earth is a journey to the dwelling place
Christ has prepared and reserved for us in his Father’s house.
Sometimes we stay right on the path that leads us home
and sometimes we take short cuts or make detours
or even turn around and walk in the other direction!

We need the Lord to shepherd us from death into life...

So it might be, it might even be likely,
that at the end of our life our rough edges
might need some buffing and polishing.

The Church has long taught that after death,
those not quite ready for heaven
may need some further purification.
This has sometimes been called purgatory.
But we might have a false picture of purgatory.
It’s not some “flaming concentration camp on the outskirts of hell.”*
It’s not God’s last chance to make us suffer!

St. Catherine spoke beautifully of the fire of purgatory
as “God’s love burning the soul until it was wholly aflame
-- with the love of God.”
It’s like the fire mentioned in the book of Wisdom:
“As gold in the furnace, God will prove us, purify us,
and take us to himself… we shall shine…
and we shall abide forever with God in love…”
If there is pain in purgatory,
it is the pain of longing to be with God,
to be worthy of the heaven Jesus won for us.

And so we pray for those who have gone before us
that God bring to completion the good work begun in their lives
while they were still with us.
We cannot know how or even if time is measured in this purification.
Perhaps one day, one hour, one minute on our clocks
of finally and fully realizing the greatness of God’s love for us
and how unloving in return we often were,
perhaps one second will be all it takes to purify us
of the sins of taking God’s love and the love of others for granted.

When we remember those who have died
some of us might recall those who hurt and harmed in this life.
Nothing is impossible for God.
We can pray for these, too, entrusting them to God
who knows how to make even the hardest of hearts
ready for his mercy.

Of course, many of those whom we remember on All Souls Day
were long ago perfected by God’s mercy
and welcomed to their places in heaven
We remember and pray for them, too.

Today, and through this month of November,
we remember those who have gone to their rest
in the hope of rising again and all the departed...

And we remember Jesus, our brother, who died for us and rose
and opened the door to his Father’s house
and prepared for each of us a dwelling place in his peace.

Leondard Foley, OFM

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

All Saints Day

Image result for all saints tapestryThe prayers of All Saints Day highlight our belief that we continue to be in relationship with those who have gone before us, marked with the sign of faith. It is not only a matter of our honoring the holy lives these brothers and sisters led but also of acknowledging that they who are already with the Lord continue to be concerned for us and our welfare. That the very work of God can be manifest in our lives calls us to the responsibility of living in a way that the love of God be transparent in our deeds and relationships. Finally, our prayer on All Saints Day reminds us that when we share at the altar of the Lord's table we have a foretaste of the banquet the saints share forever in the reign of God.

The church calendar sets aside many days to honor the most famous of saints. November 1 is the day for us to remember and honor those saints whose lives made headlines not in the daily papers but in the hearts of those they served and touched. All of us know such saints in our own lives - some who have gone home to the Lord and some who are still with us.

Happy All Saints Day to all!