Saturday, June 23, 2018

Marianist religious life

Image result for marianist meribah
Religious life has a long history in the example and teaching of Jesus. He himself lived a life of chaste self-dedication to God, in poverty and obedience, and He encouraged His disciples to do the same.


From the earliest days of the Church men and women responded to this call, imitating Christ more closely and following Him with greater liberty, through lives of committed poverty, chastity and obedience.

Saying ‘yes’ to the Father’s call and to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, they choose this way of life to devote themselves to Christ with an undivided heart. Like the Apostles, they leave everything to be with Christ, and to put themselves at the service of God and of their brothers and sisters.

The Marianists from the Province of Meribah live together in Community, supporting each other in a shared way of life, in prayer, and in dedication to the apostolate of education.

The Marianist religious life is a gift of God for the individuals who are called, and for the whole Church.

Friday, June 22, 2018

In honor of the Day

Master's Touch

“We approach Christ, and He responds with love.”

St. Matthew offers us the story of the leper whom Jesus healed. The leper who showed great faith was convinced that Jesus could help him if he wanted to. But knowing that wasn’t enough; he had to do something about it as well. Despite his disfigurement and illness, he made his way through the crowd and walked up to Jesus. It took all the courage he had to declare: “Lord, if you wish, you can make me clean." Jesus rewarded his confidence: In an instant, his leprosy was gone. But that wasn’t the end of the story.

We know the leper’s approach had basically three elements:

1) The leper came with confidence. He had no doubt that, if Jesus willed, Jesus would make him clean. He had perfect confidence in Jesus’ power.

2) The leper came with humility. He did not demand healing. It were as if he said, “I know I don’t matter; I know the other men will flee from me and will have nothing to do with me; I know that I have no claim on you; but perhaps you will give your power even to one such as I.” It is the humble heart which is conscious of nothing but its need that finds its way to Christ.

3) The leper came with reverence. That leper could never have told anyone what he thought Jesus was; but he knew that in the presence of Jesus he was in the presence of God.

And then came the reaction of Jesus. First and foremost, that reaction was compassion. For Jesus there was only one obligation in life – and that was to help.

For us now, we know the power of the touch of Christ. We are engaged in his mission on a daily level. In a very real and dramatic way we are asked to imitate the power of Christ. Pope Benedict put it this way just a few weeks ago:

"If your mission is to be truly effective -- if the words you proclaim are to touch hearts, engage people's freedom and change their lives -- you must draw them into an encounter with persons and communities who witness to the grace of Christ by their faith and their lives.

”May we continue to be graced with confidence, humility, and reverence, to respond with compassion. Blessed William Joseph Chaminade calls all of us: "It is an infinite honor to be like Him."

Thursday, June 21, 2018

God's Real

It is a rare occasion when we hear a Hollywood speech like the one below.

Actor Chris Pratt was honored at the 2018 MTV Movie and TV Awards yesterday.this week.

He delivered an earthy, frank, funny, gross, yet inspirational speech that encouraged young people to learn how to pray, reassured them that God loves them.

One writer said, "he knows his audience and how to tell them what they might not have expected to hear."


Wednesday, June 20, 2018

"What gift do you have for us?"



As Christians, we can rest assured that we are constantly receiving God's gifts in our lives.

Even during spiritual "dry spells," our potential for "giftedness" is still there. Especially during these desert-moments, we should be bold enough to go looking for our spiritual gifts. When we try on new possible roles that might enable us to find and claim new spiritual gifts for ourselves, we are renewed. God never approaches us empty-handed.

As members of the Body of Christ, we are responsible for the health and maintenance of that Body. The gifts of love and leadership, compassion and counsel are all exercises we perform for the sake of the Body's health.

In the world of fitness experts we hear them preach, "If you don't use it, you lose it." Each of us must flex our spiritual gifts in order to keep the Body of Christ fit and strong.

So, "What gift do you have for us?"

Monday, June 18, 2018

Nothing is impossible for you

Image result for mustard seed


“This is how it is with the reign of God. A farmer scatters seed on the ground, goes to bed, and gets up day after day. Through it all the seeds sprouts and grows without the farmer knowing how it happens.” – Mark 4.26-37

A farmer in Jesus’ time and all of us who grow plants today inherit the leap from ocean to land that early cellular life made. We can ready the field, sow the seed, and sleep awhile. It’s organic. Seeds have it in their DNA how to grow and mature with rain and sun. We live in a dynamic, evolving world in which all that is has the capacity to become more, to self-organize into new wholes. We humans live and thrive in relationship with others–in mutual, reciprocal love for family, friends, neighbors. Who do we count as neighbors, we Christians who embrace the moral challenge to do unto others what we do for ourselves–to act like one human family?

I am feeling shame these days that the law of our land requires splitting up parents and children at the Mexican border. Kids are crying there and all over the country where deportation is happening. Who has a stomach for cruelty to little kids? One can go bed and let the consequences play out while we sleep. Yet who of us like these children’s parents does not want safety, education, and a good life for their children? That’s what I want for my family. That’s what the kin*dom of God is like.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Happy Father's Day!

Image result for happy father's day

God our Father,
in your wisdom and love you made all things.

Bless these men,
that they may be strengthened as Christian fathers.

Let the example of their faith and love shine forth.
Grant that we, their sons and daughters,
may honor them always
with a spirit of profound respect.

Grant this through Christ our Lord.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Marianist News!

Congratulations to our Brother Peter who was installed in the ministry of acolyte this morning in Rome. May God bless him as he continues to deepen his commitment to his vocation. 

Friday, June 15, 2018

Emotional Reunion

Over the past 30 years the Marianists of the Province of Meribah have maintained a strong relationship with the Little Sisters of the Poor at Queen of Peace Residence in Queens Village.

We have shared our students in many service projects, prayer and the yearly Junior-Senior Prom. Take a look at the video below filmed at Queen of Peace this week which gives testimony to the Little Sisters impact on the young and the elderly.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Beatification Adele 4

Happy Beatification Day.

All day yesterday more groups arrived- Japan, Korea, Chile, lots of French and Italians, and finally at 7:30 pm Brother Michael and the General Administration after facing every possible obstacle.

The day was filled with prayer and festivities. The day ended with a very French “Spectacular” at the chateau de Trenqueleon. The show concluded with fireworks.



Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Beatification of Adele 2

The Beatification of Adele is marked with prayers and thanksgiving as the Beatification Day approaches in Agen.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Beatification of Adele 1


Our Marianist pilgrims had a wonderful day in Paris as they travelled to Agen for the Beatification of Adele.. The day was sunny with clear blue skies but not hot and the city looked beautiful. They went to the shrine of the Miraculous Medal for Mass and some quiet time. Following they went to the Sainte Chappele. The stained glass windows glowed in the morning sun and we spent an hour tracing all the stories told in glass. After a stroll around Norte Dame to admire the spires and buttresses, we stopped for lunch along the Seine.


This morning we bid farewell to Paris and travel to Agen.

Imagine Sisters Movement

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Vocation: your deep gladness meets the world's deep hunger

From David Brooks, in the New York Times a little profundity —and a challenge to the world—

A human life is not just a means to produce outcomes, it is an end in itself. When we evaluate our friends, we don’t just measure the consequences of their lives. We measure who they intrinsically are. We don’t merely want to know if they have done good. We want to know if they are good.

That’s why when most people pick a vocation, they don’t only want one that will be externally useful. They want one that they will enjoy, and that will make them a better person. They want to find that place, as the novelist Frederick Buechner put it, “where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”

If you are smart, hard-working, careful and lucky you might even be able to find a job that is both productive and internally ennobling. Taking a job just to make money, on the other hand, is probably going to be corrosive, even if you use the money for charity rather than sports cars.

We live in a relentlessly commercial culture, so it’s natural that many people would organize their lives in utilitarian and consequentialist terms. But it’s possible to get carried away with this kind of thinking — to have logic but no wisdom, to become a specialist without spirit.

Making yourself is different than producing a product or an external outcome, requiring different logic and different means. I’d think you would be more likely to cultivate a deep soul if you put yourself in the middle of the things that engaged you most seriously. If your profoundest interest is dying children in Africa or Bangladesh, it’s probably best to go to Africa or Bangladesh, not to Wall Street.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Culture of waste

As we have heard before Papa Bergoglio often recycles his content so that his message is impossible to avoid.

Along those lines, Wednesday's Audience had a crowd close to 100,000 people and Francis' catechesis focused on the "culture of waste":

This "culture of waste" tends to become the common mentality that infects everyone. Human life, the person is no longer perceived as a primary value to be respected and protected, especially if poor or disabled, if not yet useful - such as the unborn child - or no longer needed - such as the elderly. This culture of waste has made us insensitive even to the waste and disposal of food, which is even more despicable when all over the world, unfortunately, many individuals and families are suffering from hunger and malnutrition. Once our grandparents were very careful not to throw away any leftover food. Consumerism has led us to become used to an excess and daily waste of food, to which, at times, we are no longer able to give a just value, which goes well beyond mere economic parameters. We should all remember, however, that the food we throw away is as if stolen from the table of the poor, the hungry! I encourage everyone to reflect on the problem of thrown away and wasted food to identify ways and means that, by seriously addressing this issue, are a vehicle of solidarity and sharing with the needy.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Sacred Heart of Jesus

The Litany of the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us.
God, the Son, Redeemer of the World, have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, Son of the Eternal Father,
have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, formed in the womb of the Virgin Mother by the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, united substantially with the word of God, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, of infinite majesty, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, holy temple of God, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, tabernacle of the Most High, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, house of God and gate of heaven,
have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, glowing furnace of charity,
have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, vessel of justice and love, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, full of goodness and love, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, abyss of all virtues, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, most worthy of all praise, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, king and center of all hearts, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, in whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, in whom dwelleth all the fullness of the Divinity, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, in whom the Father is well pleased, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, of whose fullness we have all received, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, desire of the everlasting hills, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, patient and rich in mercy, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, rich to all who invoke Thee, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, fount of life and holiness, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, saturated with revilings, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, crushed for our iniquities, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, made obedient unto death, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, pierced with a lance, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, source of all consolation, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, our life and resurrection, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, our peace and reconciliation, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, victim for our sins, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, salvation of those who hope in Thee, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, hope of those who die in Thee, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, delight of all saints, have mercy on us.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord,
Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
V. Jesus, meek and humble of Heart.
R. Make our hearts like unto Thine.

Let us pray

Almighty and everlasting God, look upon the Heart of Your well-beloved Son and upon the acts of praise and satisfaction which He renders unto You in the name of sinners; and in Your great goodness, grant pardon to them who seek Your mercy, in the name of the same Son, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You, world without end. Amen.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Prayer for a Frustrated Catholic


Many thanks to Fr. James Martin, S.J. for this Prayer for a Frustrated Catholic below.

Dear God, sometimes I get so frustrated with your church.

I know that I’m not alone. So many people who love your church feel frustrated with the Body of Christ on earth. I know that laypeople feel frustrated. Priests and deacons, and brothers and sisters, can feel frustrated, too. And I’ll bet that even bishops and popes feel frustrated. We grow worried and concerned and bothered and angry and sometimes scandalized because your divine institution, our home, is filled with human beings who are sinful. Just like me.

But I get frustrated most of all when I feel that there are things that need to be changed and I don’t have the power to change them.

So I need your help, God.

Help me to remember that Jesus promised that he would be with us until the end of time, and that your church is always guided by the Holy Spirit, even if it’s hard for me to see. Sometimes change happens suddenly, and the Spirit astonishes us, but often in the church, it happens slowly. In your time, not mine. Help me know that the seeds that I plant with love in the ground of your church will one day bloom. So give me patience.

Help me to understand that there was never a time when there were not arguments or disputes within your church. Arguments go all the way back to Peter and Paul debating one another. And there was never a time when there wasn’t sin among the members of your church. That kind of sin goes back to Peter denying Jesus during his Passion. Why would today’s church be any different than it was for people who knew Jesus on earth? Give me wisdom.

Help me to trust in the Resurrection. The Risen Christ reminds us that there is always the hope of something new. Death is never the last word for us. Neither is despair. And help me remember that when the Risen Christ appeared to his disciples, he bore the wounds of his Crucifixion. Like Christ, the church is always wounded, but always a carrier of grace. Give me hope.

Help me to believe that your Spirit can do anything: raise up saints when we need them most, soften hearts when they seem hardened, open minds when they seem closed, inspire confidence when all seems lost, help us do what had seemed impossible until it was done. This is the same Spirit that converted Paul, inspired Augustine, called Francis of Assisi, emboldened Catherine of Siena, consoled Ignatius of Loyola, comforted Thérèse of Lisieux, enlivened John XXIII, accompanied Teresa of Calcutta, strengthened Dorothy Day and encouraged John Paul II. It is the same Spirit that it with us today, and your Spirit has lost none of its power. Give me faith.

Help me to remember all your saints. Most of them had it a lot worse than I do. They were frustrated with your church at times, struggled with it, and were occasionally persecuted by it. St. Joan of Arc was burned at the stake by church authorities. St. Ignatius Loyola was thrown into jail by the Inquisition. St. Mary MacKillop was excommunicated. If they can trust in your church in the midst of those difficulties, so can I. Give me courage.

Help me to be peaceful when people tell me that I don’t belong in the church, that I’m a heretic for trying to make things better, or that I’m not a good Catholic. I know that I was baptized. You called me by name to be in your church, God. As long as I draw breath, help me remember how the holy waters of baptism welcomed me into your holy family of sinners and saints. Let the voice that called me into your church be what I hear when other voices tell me that I’m not welcome in the church. Give me peace.

Most of all, help me to place all of my hope in your Son. My faith is in Jesus Christ. Give me only his love and his grace. That’s enough for me.

Help me God, and help your church. Amen.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

What gift do you have for us?


As Christians, we can rest assured that we are constantly receiving God's gifts in our lives.

Even during spiritual "dry spells," our potential for "giftedness" is still there. Especially during these desert-moments, we should be bold enough to go looking for our spiritual gifts. When we try on new possible roles that might enable us to find and claim new spiritual gifts for ourselves, we are renewed. God never approaches us empty-handed.

As members of the Body of Christ, we are responsible for the health and maintenance of that Body. The gifts of love and leadership, compassion and counsel are all exercises we perform for the sake of the Body's health.

In the world of fitness experts we hear them preach, "If you don't use it, you lose it." Each of us must flex our spiritual gifts in order to keep the Body of Christ fit and strong.

So, "What gift do you have for us?"

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

We are what we eat...

On Sunday, the Solemnity of the Body of Blood of Christ, we gathered to celebrate the feast where we attempt to understand and explore the belief that Christ is truly present in the Eucharist. There comes also a challenge, to believe not only that the bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ, but to believe also that, indeed, we are to become what we eat and drink: we are to become the true presence of Christ breaking ourselves like bread to nourish our neighbor; pouring ourselves out like wine in outreach to those in need. 

Hundreds of years ago St. Augustine said it oh-so-well when he wrote these words:

Image result for corpus christi feast"What you see (on the altar) is the bread and the chalice;
that is what your own eyes report to you.
But what your faith obliges you to accept
is that the bread is the Body of Christ and the chalice the Blood of Christ…

How is the bread His Body?
And the chalice, or what is in the chalice, how is it His Blood? These elements, brothers and sisters, are called sacraments,
because in them one thing is seen, but another is understood. 


What is seen is the corporeal species,
but what is understood is the spiritual fruit…St. Paul wrote: 'You are the Body of Christ and his members.'(1 Cor. 12:27)

If, therefore, you are the Body of Christ and his members, then your own mystery is presented at the table of the Lord, you receive your mystery. To that which you are, you answer: `Amen...' For you hear: `The Body of Christ!' and you answer: `Amen!' Be, then, a member of Christ's Body, so that your `Amen' may be the truth."

Monday, June 4, 2018

Marianist Monday

Try forgiveness

Did you ever try forgiveness, real forgiveness?

Last week in our Communtiy liturgy our homilest spent some time fleshing out his ideas on forgiveness. It is not an easy thing. But it is essential in all committed relationships. It is a pre-requisite for community living.

As we get older, we can even trim our spiritual vocabulary down to just three words: Forgive, forgive, forgive! That's really what it is all about. It is all about forgiveness.

To die with a forgiving heart is the ultimate. We shouldn't delude ourselves on this. Everything in the world does little for us if our hearts are bitter and incapable of forgiveness.

But it’s not easy to forgive. Most everything inside of us protests. When we have been wronged, when we have suffered an injustice, when someone or something has treated us unfairly, thousands of physical and psychological mechanisms inside of us begin to clam-up, to shut-down, to freeze- over, to self-protect, and to scream-out in protest, anger, and rage.

Forgiveness is not something we can just wish and make happen. The heart, as Pascal once said, has its reasons. It also has its rhythms, its paranoia, its cold bitter spots, and its need to seal itself off from whatever has wounded it.

And finally, all of us have been wounded. No one comes to adulthood with his or her heart fully intact. In ways small or traumatic, we have all been treated unjustly, violated, hurt, ignored, not properly honored, and unfairly cast aside. We all carry wounds and, with those wounds, we all carry some angers, some bitterness, and some areas within which we have not forgiven.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Corpus Christi is Here!

Come and Kneel Before Him Now
You have to see this on this Corpus Christi weekend.
In February, two Franciscan Capuchins held a Eucharistic Adoration Flash Mob in front of a busy mall in Preston, UK. They read out a powerful list of Jesus's atttributes in each book of the Bible and then call passers-by to "Come and Kneel Before Him Now". And slowly, one by one, they do. Then they begin to clap before him.

The comments on the You tube page add this information:
A small team of Catholic evangelists mingled with the crowd to hand out cards and explain what was going on. Here are some of the reactions....

"What is this about? What is happening? What is this about?"
One young girl said: "I've not seen anything like this since Church."
"Are they doing this all day? ... Will they be doing it again? ... Are they doing this any where else?"
Two young women asked: "Why does God allow hurt and pain in the world?" They agreed it was not God's fault but ours. Then they asked: "Why doesn't Jesus come again?" We explained that He is here in the form of bread, but would come again and we invited them to think about Him now.
"Is it religious? What is inside that thing?"
A man said: "What is that guy doing?" An old woman with him replied: "That's Jesus. Show respect."
"This is so moving! It is the first time I have seen it done outside. I can't wait to tell my parish priest!"

Corpus Christi

We wait in silence and trust our rock-solid God to help shape our decisions, we usually make a better choice. The very same is true when we're wrestling with a big decision and decide to "sleep on it."

Waiting in silence is not enough -- it's also important to pray. "Trust in God at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us."  We pour out our hearts when we ask for guidance in our decision-making, and when we pray about the various options that lie before us. Taking the time to discern God's will can help us to eliminate a number of options that will lead us in the wrong direction.

Letting yourself have fewer options can actually lead you to a better outcome.

So pray about it. Pour out your heart before God, and let the Lord be your guide and your refuge. You'll end up with a better decision.

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Psalm 62

Psalm 62

"For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from him."

Often we feel pressure to make choices quickly, whether we are rushing to declare a major in college, or jumping at the first job that's offered to us. But when the choices are serious, we almost always have time to wait.

So how should we wait? Wait in silence. Wait for God. Wait for the One who is our source of hope. The psalmist says that God "is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken. On God rests my deliverance and my honor; my mighty rock, my refuge is in God."

This God is worth the wait.

Friday, June 1, 2018

Saint Justin, martyr

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St. Justin was a philosopher and martyr, and was probably the most important of the second-century apologist Fathers. He set out to defend the new religion from the weighty accusations of both the pagans and Jews, and to spread the Christian doctrine in terms suited to the culture of the time. So, he had a twofold concern: defending the newborn Christian faith and explaining the content of the faith in a manner comprehensible to their contemporaries.

Justin was born around the year 100, near an ancient city in the Holy Land, and was the son of pagan nobles, so he was not raised in the faith. But he was very well educated, studying poetry, history and science, and he was deeply schooled in the ancient Greek philosophers. Though he was not raised to know the truth about God, he was certainly on a quest for truth.