Mary Mother of GOD
 Friday  Saints December  16 Décimo séptimo Kaléndas Januárii  
Et álibi aliórum plurimórum sanctórum Mártyrum et Confessórum, atque sanctárum Vírginum.
And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.
Пресвятая Богородице спаси нас!
(Santíssima Mãe de Deus, salva-nos!)


Nine First Fridays Devotion to the Sacred Heart
From the writings of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque



 
15 Promises of the Virgin Mary to those who recite the Rosary

( August September 520 bc ) Prophet_Haggai.jpg

Our Bartholomew Family Prayer List  Here

Acts of the Apostles

Pope Benedict XVI to The Catholic Church In China {article here }

The saints “a cloud of witnesses over our head”,
showing us life of Christian perfection is possible.

I ought to imagine to myself that there are no others in the world but God and myself.
-- St. Alphonsus Liguori


Pope Authorizes 12 14 2015 Promulgation of Decrees Concerning 17 Causes,
Including Servant of God William Gagnon
November 23 2014 Six to Be Canonized on Feast of Christ the King

CAUSES OF SAINTS April  2014  

December 16 – Our Lady of Good Deliverance  
 
A huge network to counter the forces of Evil
After the apparitions of Lourdes, Our Lady has continued to show her strong maternal concern
for the fate of humanity in her various apparitions worldwide.
She has requested prayers and penance for the conversion of sinners everywhere, since she actually foresaw the spiritual ruin of certain countries, the suffering that the Holy Father would have to undergo, the general weakening of the Christian faith, the struggles of the Church, the rise of the Antichrist and his attempts to replace God in the life of men—attempts that, despite their alarming successes, are however ultimately doomed to failure.

… The Virgin Mary is trying to build a huge network of her spiritual sons in the world to launch a strong offensive against the forces of the Evil one, to shut him in and thus prepare the final victory of her divine Son, Jesus Christ ...
As a sign of our participation in her offensive, she asks for a conversion of heart, a great devotion to the Holy Eucharist, the daily recitation of the Rosary, constant prayer, and acceptance of personal suffering for the salvation of the world.
This might seem insignificant, but in the hands of God nothing is impossible.
 Cardinal Ivan Dias (Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples)
Homily of December 8, 2007, in the Basilica of Saint Pius X in Lourdes

 
A Shoot Will Come out from the Stump of Jesse  December 16 - Our Lady of Happy Deliverance (Spain, 1565)
What did the bush seen by Moses announce, with its flame that didn't consume the wood, if not Mary giving birth without pain? (Ex 3:2). And wasn't Aaron's branch, blossoming without being watered (Nb 17:8), the figure of the Virgin conceiving without having known a man? From that great miracle Isaiah reveals a still greater mystery: a shoot will come out from the stump of Jesse and from its root a flower will emerge (Is 11:1).
   The shoot, in his mind, is the Virgin, and the flower, the Son of the Virgin. And this famous fleece, taken from the sheep by the shearer without marring its skin, and whose pure wool, laid out on the ground, was alternately covered with dew on the dry ground and dry on the soaking ground: What else does it signify if not the flesh of Christ borrowed from the flesh of Mary without harming her virginity? In her, this is for certain, heavenly dew came down with divine bliss to the point that we can all share in this bliss and that without her we are but a barren land.
St Bernard of Clairvaux Excerpt of the Second Homily Super Missus
December 16 - Institution of Our Lady of Deliverance (France, 1583)
Mary in the Midst of Israel's Waiting (VII)
"I shall make you a light to the nations so that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth" (Is 49:6)
The eager expectation felt by the Virgin, in the midst of her own nation Israel, is also a longing felt by the whole world and all the nations, as the prophet Isaiah forcefully reminds us in his messianic oracles:
"I have shaped you; I have made a covenant of the people and a light to the nations" (Is 42:6).
     "It is not enough for you to be my servant, to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back the survivors of Israel; I shall make you a light to the nations so that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth" (Is 49:6).

"Nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. Lift up your eyes round about, and see: they all gather themselves together, they come to you" (...) "The abundance of the sea shall be turned to you, the wealth of the nations shall come to you. The multitude of camels shall cover you, the dromedaries of Midian and Ephah; all they from Sheba shall come; they shall bring gold and frankincense, and shall proclaim the praises of the Lord" (Is 60:1-6).


   "His empire shall stretch from sea to sea, from the river to the ends of the earth" (...) "May his name be blessed forever, and endure in the sight of the sun. In him shall be blessed every race in the world, and all nations call him blessed (Ps 72:1-17).

December 16 – Our Lady of Good Deliverance (France)
  Help us “walk safely through the dangers of this world”
The devotion to the Black Madonna of Our Lady of Good Deliverance goes back to Medieval times. The statue has been in the chapel of the Sisters of St Thomas of Villeneuve in Neuilly sur Seine (near Paris) since 1910. The tradition of an ancient pilgrimage, attended by Saint Dominic, Saint Francis de Sales, and Saint John Bosco, is still kept alive to this day.
The faithful invoke the Virgin in order to “walk safely through the dangers of this world.” They have recourse to her on behalf of prisoners, expecting mothers, and people subject to temptation.

This feast was instituted by the Sacred Congregation of Rites in 1874.
Source: Liturgy of the Saints of the Diocese of Nanterre, France

 
It Makes No Sense Not To Believe In GOD 
Every Christian must be a living book wherein one can read the teaching of the gospel


When faith is strong it works wonders ( Mk 16:17 ).
 Please pray for those who have no one to pray for them.

THE PRECIOUS BLOOD OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST
- 500 b.c. The Holy Prophet Haggai prophesied the Messiah would appear in this Temple persuaded people build 2nd Jerusalem Temple
Sunday of the Holy Forefathers ancestors of Christ according to the flesh, who lived before the Law and under the
Law, especially the Patriarch Abraham, to whom God said
"In thy seed shall all of the nations of the earth be
blessed" (Gen. 12:3, 22:18).

250 St. Albina Martyr at a tender age a young witness for Christ
3rd v. Marinus The Martyr soldier Caesarea of Palestine refused to swear the customary oath invoking the pagan gods,
or to offer sacrifice to idols

 305 St. Valentine Martyr with group including Navalis Concordius Agricola
Ss Ananias, Azarias, and Misael buried in a cave in Babylon
371 ST EUSEBIUS, BISHOP OF VERCELLI  united the monastic discipline with the clerical
389 St. Irenion of Gaza (Palestinian, bishop) first church built in Gaza
5th-6th v. St. Beoc Irish monastic founder
       many holy virgins In Africa
 875 St. Ado of Vienne Benedictine archbishop scholar wrote new Roman Martyrology  
 894
Theophano The Holy Empress; Sunday after Pentecost be dedicated to All Saints
 999 ST ADELAIDE, WIDOW; regent Throughout her life she had shown herself generous and forgiving to enemies, and amenable to the wise guidance in turn of St Adalbert of Magdeburg, St Majolus and St Odilo of Cluny, who called her “a marvel of beauty and grace”. She founded and restored monasteries of monks and nuns, and was urgent for the conversion of the Slavs, whose movements on the eastern frontier troubled her closing years before she finally returned to Burgundy.
1000 + St. Nicholas Chrysoberges Patriarch of Constantinople
1012 In Hibérnia sancti Beáni Epíscopi.      In Ireland, St. Bean, bishop.
1151 Bl. Raynald de Bar Cistercian abbot 1st collection Cistercian statutes
1496 BD SEBASTIAN OF BRESCIA all Genoa came to his tomb, whereat many miracles were reported.
1542 Saint Sophia the Nun, "the holy Righteous Princess the wonderworker, who dwelt at the Protection monastery." several miraculous healings at her grave
1717 BD MARY OF TURIN, VIRGIN  miraculous abbess “Obedience wills what God wills"
1916 Blessed Honoratus Kozminski; received Capuchin habit and new name; 4 years later he was ordained; 1855 helped Blessed Mary Angela Truszkowska establish the Felician Sisters;


- 500 b.c. The Holy Prophet Haggai prophesied the Messiah would appear in this Temple; persuaded people build 2nd Jerusalem Temple
The tenth of the Twelve Minor Prophets. He was of the Tribe of Levi and he prophesied during the times of the Persian emperor Darius Hystaspis (prior to 500 B.C.). Upon the return of the Jews from the Babylonian Captivity, he persuaded the people tbuild the Second Temple at Jerusalem, and he proclaimed that the Messiah would appear in this Temple in the last times.
Haggai
   The last, the post-exilic, period of prophecy opens with Haggai. The change is striking. Before the Exile the watchword of the prophets was Punishment.  During the Exile it became Consolation. Now it is Restoration. Haggai appears at a critical moment in the development of Judaism; the birth of the new Palestinian community. His short exhortations are precisely dated, August and September of 520. The first Jews to return from Babylonia to rebuild the Temple were quickly discouraged. The prophets Haggai and Zechariah stirred them to new efforts and urged Zerubbabel the governor and the High Priest Joshua to resume work on the Temple; this was done in September, 520, 1:15; cf. Ezr 5:1.
    The four brief discourses composing this book are entirely concerned with this. Since the Temple is still in ruins Yahweh has destroyed the harvests; its rebuilding will usher in an age of prosperity. However unimposing, this new Temple will dim the glory of the old; and power is promised to Zerubbabel, the chosen of God. This Temple, therefore, and this descendant of David become the focus of a messianic hope that will be more clearly expressed in Zechariah.
It is believed that Haggai was buried with the priests at Jerusalem, since he was descended from Aaron.
Sunday of the Holy Forefathers ancestors of Christ according to the flesh, who lived before the Law and under the Law, especially the Patriarch Abraham, to whom God said "In thy seed shall all of the nations of the earth be blessed" (Gen. 12:3, 22:18).
The Sunday that falls between December 11-17
These are the ancestors of Christ according to the flesh, who lived before the Law and under the Law, especially the Patriarch Abraham, to whom God said, "In thy seed shall all of the nations of the earth be blessed" (Gen. 12:3, 22:18).

 Gazæ, in Palæstína, sancti Ireniónis Epíscopi.
       At Gaza in Palestine, St. Irenion, bishop.

250 St. Albina Martyr at a tender age a young witness for Christ
 Fórmiis, in Campánia, sanctæ Albínæ, Vírginis et Mártyris, sub Décio Imperatóre.
     At Mola di Gaeta in Campania, St. Albina, virgin and martyr, under Emperor Decius.
Albina was born in Caesarea and was martyred there, or perhaps in Formiae. She was caught up in the persecutions conducted under Emperor Trajanus Decius of Rome.
Albina is listed in the Roman Martyrology. Little is known of her before her martyrdom.

305 St. Valentine Martyr with group including Navalis Concordius Agricola.
 Ravénnæ sanctórum Mártyrum Valentíni, magístri mílitum, ejúsque fílii Concórdii, atque Navális et Agrícolæ; qui, in persecutióne Maximiáni, pro Christo passi sunt.
     At Ravenna, the holy martyrs Valentine, an officer of the army, Concordius, his son, Navalis, and Agricola, who suffered for Christ in the persecution of Maximian.
at Ravenna, Italy. There is some question as to whether they were actually martyred in that city (as St. Peter Chrysologus wrote that St. Apollinaris was the only person martyred at Ravenna); It is also possible that they can be considered synonymous with Valentine martyrs of that same era also declared to have died in Ravenna.
3rd v. The Martyr Marinus soldier Caesarea of Palestine refused to swear the customary oath invoking the pagan gods, or to offer sacrifice to idols
a soldier who suffered in Caesarea of Palestine in the third century.
When he was about to be promoted to centurion, he refused to swear the customary oath invoking the pagan gods, or to offer sacrifice to idols.
St Marinus was beheaded after cruel tortures, and buried by St Asterius (August 7).

371 ST EUSEBIUS, BISHOP OF VERCELLI  united the monastic discipline with the clerical
 Sancti Eusébii, Epíscopi Vercellénsis et Mártyris; cujus dies natális Kaléndis Augústi, et Ordinátio décimo octávo Kaléndas Januárii refértur.
      St. Eusebius, bishop of Vercelli and martyr.  His birthday is commemorated on the 1st of August and his ordination on the 15th of December.
   ST EUSEBIUS was born in the isle of Sardinia, where his father is said to have died in chains for the faith. His mother, when left a widow, took him and a daughter, both in their infancy, to Rome, where Eusebius was brought up and ordained lector. He was called to Vercelli, in Piedmont, and served that church with such distinction that he was chosen to govern it by the clergy and people.
  
He is the first bishop of Vercelli whose name we know. St Ambrose assures us that he was the first who in the West united the monastic discipline with the clerical, living himself with some of his clergy a common life in community. For this reason St Eusebius of Vercelli is specially venerated by the canons regular. He saw that the best and first means to labour effectually for the sanctification of his people was to form under his own eyes a clergy on whose virtue, piety and zeal he could depend. In this he succeeded so well that other churches demanded his disciples for their bishops, and a number of prelates came out of his school who were shining lamps in the Church of God.
   He was at the same time very careful personally to instruct his flock, and, moved by the force of the truth which he preached and persuaded by the sweetness and charity of his conduct, many sinners were encouraged to change their lives. But in 354 he was called to the public work of the Church at large, and for ten years following was a distinguished and persecuted confessor of the faith.


   In
354 Pope Liberius deputed St Eusebius, with Lucifer of Cagliari, to beg the Emperor Constantius to assemble a council to try and end the trouble between Catholics and Arians. Constantius agreed, and a council met at Milan in 355. Eusebius, seeing things would be carried by force through the power of the Arians, though the Catholic prelates were more numerous, refused to go to it till he was pressed by Constantius himself.
   When the bishops were called on to sign a condemnation of St Athanasius that had been drawn up, Eusebius refused, and instead laid the Nicene creed on the table and insisted on all signing that before the case of St Athanasius should be considered.
   Great tumult and confusion followed. Eventually the emperor sent for St Eusebius, St Dionysius of Milan and Lucifer of Cagliari, and pressed them to condemn Athanasius. They insisted upon his innocence and that he could not be condemned without being heard, and urged that secular force might not be used to influence ecclesiastical decisions. The emperor stormed and threatened to put them to death, but was content to banish them. The first place of exile of St Eusebius was Scythopolis (Beisan) in Palestine, where he was put in charge of the Arian bishop, Patrophilus.
    He was lodged at first with St Joseph of Palestine (the only orthodox household in the town), and was comforted by the visits of St Epiphanius and others, and by the arrival of the deputies of his church of Vercelli with money for his subsistence. But his patience was to be exercised by great trials. Count Joseph died, and the Arians insulted the bishop, dragged him through the streets half naked, and shut him up in a little room, where he was pestered for four days with all manner of annoyances to make him conform. They forbade his deacons and other fellow confessors to be admitted to see him, so he sent a letter to Bishop Patrophilus addressed, “ Eusebius, the servant of God, with the other servants of God who suffer with him for the faith, to Patrophilus the jailer, and to his officers “. After a short account of what he had suffered, he asked that his deacons might be allowed to come to him. Eusebius undertook a sort of” hunger-strike “, and after he had remained four days without food the Arians sent him back to his lodging.

   Three weeks afterwards they came again, broke into the house, and dragged him away. They rifled his goods, plundered his provisions, and drove away his attendants. St Eusebius found means to write a letter to his flock, in which he mentions these particulars.
   Later he was removed from Scythopolis into Cappadocia, and some time afterwards into the Upper Thebaid in Egypt. We have a letter which he wrote from this place to Gregory, Bishop of Elvira, praising him for his constancy against those who had forsaken the faith of the Church. The undaunted confessor expresses a desire to end his life in suffering for the kingdom of God.
   When Constantius died towards the end of the year 361, Julian gave leave to the banished prelates to return to their sees, and St Eusebius came to Alexandria to concert measures with St Athanasius for applying proper remedies to the evils of the Church. He took part in a council there, and then went on to Antioch to put into effect the wish of the council that St Meletius should there be recognized as bishop and the Eustathian schism healed. But he found it widened by Lucifer of Cagliari, who had blown on the coals afresh by ordaining Paulinus bishop for the Eustathians. Eusebius remonstrated with him for this rash act but the hasty Lucifer resented this, and broke off communion with him and with all who, with the Council of Alexandria, received the ex-Arian bishops.
This was the origin of the schism of Lucifer, who by pride lost the fruit of his former zeal and sufferings.
   Unable to do any good at Antioch, St Eusebius travelled over the East and through Illyricum, confirming in the faith those who were wavering and bringing back many that were gone astray.
   In Italy St Hilary of Poitiers and St Eusebius met, and were employed together in opposing the arianizing Auxentius of Milan. Vercelli, on the return of its bishop after so long an absence, “laid aside her garments of mourning “, as St Jerome puts it, but of the last years of St Eusebius nothing is known. He died on August 1, on which day his eulogy occurs in the Roman Martyrology. He is therein referred to as a martyr, but the Breviary makes it clear that he was so by his sufferings and not by his death.
   In the cathedral of Vercelli is shown a manuscript copy of the gospels said to be written by St Eusebius:  it was almost worn out with age nearly a thousand years ago when King Berengariuscaused it to be covered with plates of silver. This manuscript is the earliest codex of the Old Latin version in existence, St Eusebius is among the several persons to whom the composition of the Athanasian Creed “ has been attributed.

   The fathers who by their zeal and learning maintained the true faith made humility the foundation of their labours. Conscious that they were liable to be mistaken, they said with St Augustine, “I may err, but I will never be a heretic". This humility and caution is necessary in profane no less than in religious studies. Many pursue their speculations so far as to lose touch with common sense, and by too close an application to things beyond their abilities spoil their own understanding. Cicero justly remarks that nothing can be invented so absurd that some philosopher has not said it. So true it is, as the Apostle tells us, that knowledge puffeth up”: not of itself, but through the propensity of the human heart to pride the most ignorant are usually the more apt to overrate their knowledge and abilities.

In the absence of any proper biography of St Eusebius-—that printed by Ughelli is of late date and little value—we are dependent upon the bishop’s own letters, upon a notice in the Viri illustres of St Jerome, and upon the controversial literature of the times. But the main incidents of his life have to do with general ecclesiastical history. See, for example, Hefele-­Leclercq, Histoire des Conciles, vol. i, pp. 872 seq. and 961 seq. Duchesne, Hist. ancienne de l'Eglise, vol. ii, pp. 341-350; Bardenhewer, Gescchichte der altkirchlichen Literatur, vol. iii, pp. 486—487 and especially Savio, Gli antichi vescovi d’Italia, vol. i, pp. 412—420, and 514—544.

389 St. Irenion of Gaza (Palestinian, bishop first church built in Gaza.
 Gazæ, in Palæstína, sancti Ireniónis Epíscopi.       At Gaza in Palestine, St. Irenion, bishop.
The first church built in Gaza itself was the work of St. Irenion (d. 393) whose feast is 16 December.
He was succeeded by Aeneas, and later by St. Porphyry (395-420), the true restorer of Christianity in Gaza. This holy bishop first sent Marcus, his deacon and historian, to Constantinople to obtain an order to close the pagan temples. The Christians then scarcely numbered 200 in Gaza; though the rest of the empire was gradually abandoning its idols, Gaza was stubborn in its opposition to Christianity. The decree was granted by the emperor, and the temples closed, with the exception of the Marneion, the temple sacred to Zeus Marnas, which had replaced that of Dagon. There was no great change, however, in the sentiments of the people; so St. Porphyry decided to strike a decisive blow. He went himself toConstantinople during the winter of 401-402 and obtained from Arcadius a decree for the destruction of the pagan temples, which Cynegius, a special imperial envoy, executed in May, 402. Eight temples, those of Aphrodite, Hecate, the Sun, Apollo, Core, Fortune, the Heroeion, and even the Marneion, were either pulled down or burnt. Simultaneously soldiers visited every house, seizing and burning the idols and books of magic. On the ruins of the Marneion was erected, at the expense of the empress, a large church called the Eudoxiana in her honour, and dedicated 14 April, 407. Paganism had thus ceased to exist officially.

 Sanctórum Trium Puerórum, id est Ananíæ, Azaríæ et Misaélis; quorum córpora apud Babylóniam, sub quodam specu, sunt pósita.
     
Ananias, Azarias, and Misael, The three young men, whose bodies are buried in a cave near Babylon.
5th-6th v. St. Beoc Irish monastic founder.
also called Beanus, Dabeoc, Mobeoc, and Moboac. He is credited with founding a monastery in Lough Derg, in Donegal.

In Africa pássio plurimárum sanctárum Vírginum, quæ, in persecutióne Wandálica, sub Ariáno Rege Hunneríco, suspéndia, póndera laminásque ignítas perpéssæ, martyrii agónem felíciter consummárunt.
     
many holy virgins In Africa, who reached a happy end of their martyrdom in the persecution of the Vandals under the Arian king Hunneric by having heavy weights tied to them and burning plates of metal applied to their bodies.
875 Beatus Ado of Vienne; Benedictine archbishop
 Viénnæ, in Gállia, beáti Adónis, Epíscopi et Confessóris.      At Vienne in France, blessed Ado, bishop and confessor.
Ado came of a good family of the Gatinais and was educated in the abbey of Ferrières, near Sens, under the celebrated Lupus Servatus. Refusing all inducements to return to the world he became a monk there, and soon had an established reputation for holiness and learning. He was still young when Markward, abbot of Prum, begged of Abbot Sigulf that Ado might teach the sacred sciences in his monastery, and the request was not refused. Ado so taught as to make all that were under his care truly servants of God but difficulties and disagreements arose, and he had to leave Prum.
   Eventually he came to Lyons, and St Remigius, archbishop of the city, kept him there and gave him charge of the parish church of St Romanus. His former master, Lupus, who had been chosen abbot of Ferrières, became his advocate, and, the see of Vienne falling vacant, Ado was chosen archbishop and consecrated in 859.
   He was indefatigable in preaching the truths of salvation. He usually began his sermons with the words:  "Hear the eternal truth which speaks to you in the gospel
, or “Hear Jesus Christ, who says to you, or a similar expression. He was an altogether admirable bishop, and an implacable opponent of Lothair II of Lorraine in the matrimonial affairs that came before Pope St Nicholas I. King Charles the Bald sent him to Rome to present the case of the wronged Theutberga, and he was the legate sent by the pope with letters imperatively annulling the infamous proceedings of the Synod of Metz.
   Bd Ado was the author of several written works, of which the best known is the martyrology that bears his name, of which the first version was prepared at Saint-Romain between 855 and 860. Dom Leclercq says of it that “It has contributed in a considerable measure to mislead the traditions of martyrologists and its unfortunate influence is found at work in almost all [pertinent] questions that have embarrassed historians
. Through the Martyrology of Usuard, which was an abridgement of it, and its use in later revisions, it has had a strong and regrettable influence on the official Roman Martyrology, Among the works which Ado used in its preparation was one known as the Martyrologium Romanum Parvum, purporting to be an ancient martyrology of the Roman church. He tells us that when he was at Ravenna he saw a manuscript of this, which had been sent by one of the popes to Aquileia, and he accordingly made a copy of it for his own use. It is now known that the Parvum was spurious, a document contemporary with Ado himself. It has even been suggested that it was Ado who fabricated it. This need cause no surprise, for it was not till long after his time that the forgery or doctoring of documents began to be seen as a practice deserving the reprobation that is now properly given to it. Even in our own time it is not uncommon to find continued currency given to pious legends and hagiological stories, without expressed advertence to their being only doubtfully true or even certainly false as records of historical fact.
    Bd Ado also wrote Lives of St Desiderius (Didier) and St Theuderius (Chef), and a Universal Chronicle of the Six Ages of the World, from the Creation to A.D. 869. It was considered desirable that Vienne, like other episcopal cities in southern Gaul (see, e.g. Aries, under St Trophimus on the 29th of this month, and Lazarus at Marseilles on the 17th), should have had an apostolic origin; and it seems that Ado was responsible for the tradition that Crescens was sent by St Paul not into Galatia but into Gaul (2 Timothy iv 10): his solemn commemoration at Vienne as its first bishop is still recorded in the Roman Martyrology on December 29, and referred to in the entry of his martyrdom in Galatia on June 27. Ado died at Vienne on December 16, 875. He is often accorded the title of Saint, but the Roman Martyrology refers to him as Beatus only.
There is a life of Ado printed in Mabillon, vol. iv, Pt 2, PP. 262—275, but its value as an historical source is questionable. Ado’s connection with the see of Vienne is discussed by Duchesne, Fastes Episcopaux, vol. i, PP. 147, 162, 210. The whole matter of his relation to the martyrology called by his name has been very thoroughly investigated by Dom Quentin in his Martyrologes historiques (1908). See also DAC., vol. i, cc. 535—539 and DHG., vol. i, cc. 585-586.
894 The Holy Empress Theophano the Sunday after Pentecost be dedicated to All Saints
first wife of Emperor Leo VI the Wise (886-911).

She and Leo were locked up in prison for three years, because Leo was falsely accused of intending to assassinate his father, Emperor Basil the Macedonian. After receiving her freedom, she spent her life in prayer and fasting, earnestly struggling for her salvation.

Living in the world, she renounced everything worldly. She was a benefactor to the poor, and was generous toward monasteries. She was a true mother to her subjects, caring for widows and orphans, and consoling the sorrowful. St Theophano died in 893 or 894.

Even before her death her husband started to build a church, intending to dedicate it to Theophano, but she forbade him to do so. It was this emperor who decreed that the Sunday after Pentecost be dedicated to All Saints. Believing that his wife was one of the righteous, he knew that she would also be honored whenever the Feast of All Saints was celebrated.
Her holy relics are preserved in Constantinople.
999 ST ADELAIDE, WIDOW; regent Throughout her life she had shown herself generous and forgiving to enemies, and amenable to the wise guidance in turn of St Adalbert of Magdeburg, St Majolus and St Odilo of Cluny, who called her “a marvel of beauty and grace”. She founded and restored monasteries of monks and nuns, and was urgent for the conversion of the Slavs, whose movements on the eastern frontier troubled her closing years before she finally returned to Burgundy.

WHEN in the year 933 Rudolf II of Upper Burgundy concluded a treaty with Hugh of Provence in their struggle for the crown of Italy (Lombardy), one of the terms was that Rudolf’s daughter, Adelaide, then a baby of two, should marry Hugh’s son, Lothair. Fourteen years later her brother, Conrad of Burgundy, saw to the fulfilling of this contract, Lothair being by then nominally king of Italy, but actually in the power of Berengarius of Ivrea.
  One child was born of the marriage, Emma (she eventually married Lothair II of France), and in 950 Lothair of Italy died, not without strong suspicion of having been poisoned by Berengarius, who succeeded him. Berengarius then tried to make Adelaide marry his son, and on her refusal treated her with brutality and indignity, and shut her up in a castle on Lake Garda. At this time the German king, Otto the Great, was leading an army into Italy to try to reduce the north to order. He defeated Berengarius and released Adelaide; or, as it is said, she escaped from her prison and joined him.
   To consolidate his authority in Italy, Otto married Adelaide, who was twenty years his junior, on Christmas day 951, at Pavia. Of this union five children were born. Ludolf, Otto’s son by his first wife (sister of Athelstan of England), was jealous of the influence of his stepmother and her children and became a centre of discontentand rebellion, but to the German people the gentle and gracious Adelaide soon endeared herself. In 962 Otto was crowned emperor at Rome. Nothing is heard of Adelaide for the next ten years, till in 973 her husband died and their eldest son succeeded.
   Otto II was a good and spirited prince, but hasty and self-sufficient, and on his accession to power he soon estranged his mother and allowed himself to be turned against her by his wife, the Byzantine Theophano, and other counsellors. Adelaide left the court and went to her brother, Conrad, at Vienne. She appealed to St Majolus, abbot of Cluny, whom she had wanted to see made pope when Benedict VI was murdered in 974, and he eventually succeeded in bringing about a reconciliation; mother and son met at Pavia, and Otto asked pardon on his knees for his unkindness. She sent gifts to the shrine of St Martin at Tours, including Otto’s best cloak, and asking for her son the saint’s prayers—“you who had the glory of covering with your own cloak Christ the Lord in the person of a beggar”.
   But similar trouble came when Otto died in 983. Otto III was a baby and his mother, Theophano, became regent. She had the flair for politics of the great Byzantine princesses and in this respect was more capable than her mother-in-law. Adelaide again left the court, but Theophano died suddenly in 991 and the old empress came back to be herself regent, a task now beyond her strength and peace-loving nature, though she had the assistance of St Willigis of Mainz.
  Throughout her life she had shown herself generous and forgiving to enemies, and amenable to the wise guidance in turn of St Adalbert of Magdeburg, St Majolus and St Odilo of Cluny, who called her “a marvel of beauty and grace
. She founded and restored monasteries of monks and nuns, and was urgent for the conversion of the Slavs, whose movements on the eastern frontier troubled her closing years before she finally returned to Burgundy. Death overtook her at a monastery of her foundation at Seltz, on the Rhine near Strasburg, on December 16, 999. St Adelaide was canonized c. 1097.
The most reliable source of information regarding St Adelaide is the “Epitaphium” of St Odilo of Cluny. It is printed in MGH., Scriptores, vol. iv, pp. 635—649, and in Migne, PL., vol. cxlii CC. 967—992. But a good deal may also be gleaned from the chroniclers of the period. There is a German life by F. P. Wimmer, Kaiserin Adelheid (1897). See also DHG., vol. i, cc. 516—517.
1000 + St. Nicholas Chrysoberges Patriarch of Constantinople,
modern Istanbul, Turkey, from 983. He lived in a turbulent historical era, rife with imperial disputes and schisms.

1012 In Hibérnia sancti Beáni Epíscopi.      In Ireland, St. Bean, bishop.
1151 Bl. Raynald de Bar Cistercian abbot 1st collection Cistercian statutes
A monk of Clairvaux, France, Raynald held various posts until receiving appointment in 1133 as abbot of the famed abbey of Citeaux. His chief achievement was the compilation of the first collection of Cistercian statutes.

1496 BD SEBASTIAN OF BRESCIA all Genoa came to his tomb, whereat many miracles were reported.
DURING the thirteenth century the family of the Maggi was one of the most powerful in Brescia and at the head of the party of the Guelfs; at the time of the birth of Bd Sebastian, early in the fifteenth century, it had declined from its former estate, but the name was still held in honour.
Sebastian entered the Order of Preachers when he was fifteen, and his ministry was attended with much success: large numbers were brought to repentance, quarrelling families and communes were reconciled, and the work of his order strengthened; but few particulars are
known of his busy life. He was a powerful preacher and an admirable superior in the many friaries that he governed. He recognized the genius and virtues of Jerome Savonarola, whose confessor for a time he was, and at the age of twenty-nine, when Father Jerome had been professed only six years, he made him master of the novices at Bologna.
 Bd Sebastian was a strict upholder of monastic observance, and worked doggedly at the reform of several houses, especially that of Lodi, where he set the example
of begging from door to door for the support of the community. As a superior he wished to be treated with the openness of a father, and was then gentle and indulgent; but when his brethren regarded him merely as a master, he was accordingly severe. When suffering from sickness Bd Sebastian insisted on carry­ing out a visitation of his province, but when he reached the priory of Santa Maria di Castello at Genoa he could go no further; this, he said to his companions, was to be the place of his rest for ever. He died there on December 16, 1496, and all Genoa came to his tomb, whereat many miracles were reported. The cultus of Bd Sebastian Maggi was confirmed in 1760.

Mortier in his Histoire des mattres généraux OP., vol. iv, pp. 548—550, speaks in some detail of Bd Sebastian, and he figures in nearly all the lives of Savonarola see, for example, Herbert Lucas, Fra Girolamo Savonarola (1906), pp. 10, 191 seq., etc. A short account is also given by Procter, Lives of Dominican Saints, pp. 339—342. For a fuller bibliography see Taurisano, Catalogus Hagiographicus OP

1542 Saint Sophia "the holy Righteous Princess Sophia the Nun, the wonderworker, who dwelt at the Protection monastery." several miraculous healings at her grave
in the world Solomonia, a Great Princess, daughter of the noble Yuri Saburov.
In the year 1505 she was chosen as bride by the heir to the throne, the future Great Prince Basil. Their marriage was unhappy, because Solomonia remained childless, so he divorced her. In order to have an heir, Great Prince Basil decided to wed a second time (to Elena Glinsky) and on November 25,

1525 he ordered Solomonia to become a nun. Forcibly tonsured with the name Sophia, Solomonia was sent under guard to the Suzdal Protection convent, where by ascetic deeds she banished from her heart worldly thoughts, and totally dedicated herself to God.

Prince Kurbsky calls the blessed princess "a Monastic Martyr." In the manuscript Lives of the Saints she is called "the holy Righteous Princess Sophia the Nun, the wonderworker, who dwelt at the Protection monastery." Under Tsar Theodore they revered her as a saint. Tsaritsa Irene sent to Suzdal, "to the Great Princess Solomonia, also called Sophia, a velvet veil with depiction of the Savior and other saints." Patriarch Joseph wrote to Archbishop Serapion of Suzdal about serving Panikhidas and Moliebens for Sophia. St Sophia departed to God in the year 1542.
The Suzdal sacristan Ananias speaks of several miraculous healings at her grave.
1717 BD MARY OF TURIN, VIRGIN  miraculous abbess “Obedience wills what God wills
 There lived at Turin during the seventeenth century a count of Santena named John Donato Fontanella. He was a religious and well-loved man and married an equally good wife, Mary Tana, whose father was cousin-German to St Aloysius Gonzaga.
   They had eleven children, of whom the ninth, Marianna, was a girl of particular intelligence and promise. When a child of six, emulating St Teresa, she concocted a scheme with her little brother to run away and live “ in the desert ” but they spoiled it by oversleeping on the morning intended for their departure.
 Two years later, when making recovery from a serious illness, she experienced her first vision, and from that time began to show a strongly ascetic disposition; in the following year she made her first communion. A deep impression had been made on her mind by contemplation of the blow in the face given to our Lord by the servant of Caiaphas, and a strange incident is related in that connection. One evening, when Marianna was kneeling at Benediction with one of her sisters, a strange man on her other side turned suddenly and violently slapped her cheek. The man escaped in the ensuing confusion and was never seen again.
 When she was something over twelve, Marianna, by a not very creditable ruse in concert with the nuns to evade her mother, joined the Cistercians at Saluzzo to live among their alumnae; but she was not happy there and, on the death of her father, went home to keep house for her mother. She became ever more drawn to the religious life and in 1676, after some difficulties with her family, was admitted in her sixteenth year to the Carmel of Santa Cristina. Here her first experience was one of great home-sickness; following that, an intense distaste for her new life and dislike of the novice-mistress. But she persevered and was in due course professed.
   After seven years in the convent Sister Mary-of-the-Angels, as she was now called, was visited by a long and severe “dark night”, during which she was tormented by numerous diabolical assaults and manifestations. She was guided through this by a very able director, Father Laurence-Mary, o.c.d., and at the end of three years began to come into more peaceful ways and to attain higher states of prayer. In 1690 she wrote to Father Laurence an account of a mystical experience which marked the end of her violent struggles. That Sister Mary herself was of a vehement disposition her own physical penances show. At one time she was scourging herself to blood daily, compressing her tongue with an iron ring, dropping molten wax on her skin, even suspending herself cross-wise by ropes from a beam in her cell. Of such practices we may borrow from the words of Father George O’Neill, s.j., her Irish biographer: “ No one is asked to imitate, no one is bound to admire them.”
   When she was thirty she was appointed novice-mistress, and three years later prioress, offices which she took up with deep reluctance and discharged with an equally marked ability. At the suggestion of Bd Sebastian Valfré she undertook a new foundation with a small house and inadequate endowment at Moncaglieri; and having overcome opposition from both ecclesiastical and civil authorities she was able to establish the nucleus of a community there in 1703, and the convent is still in being. Sister Mary herself wished to go there, but the people of Turin would not suffer it; all, from the members of the ducal family of Savoy downwards, were accustomed to go and ask the advice and prayers of the prioress of Santa Cristina, especially during the war with the French.
During the last twenty years of her life Bd Mary continued to have remarkable experiences and gifts, among them what appeared to be a literal “odour of sanctity”. This scent emanated from her person, and was communicated to her clothes and even to things that she touched, from which it was sometimes difficult to eradicate. From about 1702 this phenomenon was permanent, and among the witnesses to it was Father Costanzo, afterwards archbishop of Sassari in Sardinia. He characterized it as “neither natural nor artificial, nor like flowers or aromatic drugs or any mixture of perfumes, but only to be called an ‘odour of sanctity’”.
   It is stated that certain secondary relics of the beata at Moncaglieri still retain this fragrance. At the same time Bd Mary, like so many other mystics, was also notably proficient and careful in the practical matters, keeping accounts, looking after workmen, and so on, which fell to her lot as prioress. At the end of the priorate of Mother Teresa-Felix in 1717 the nuns of Santa Cristina wished to elect Bd Mary for a fifth term of office. She thought that her physical weakness would prevent her from giving a proper example of observance, and appealed to her confessor and to the prior provincial, but they both refused to interfere. Whereupon she set herself to pray that, if it were God’s will, she might shortly die; and within three weeks she was very ill.
   Punctilious obedience to superiors had been so marked in her life that the nuns now implored them to “give her an obedience” to recover. They demurred, and Mary said, “ Obedience wills what God wills, and therefore I will what obedience wills. Were the impossible possible I would do as you ask but I have so stormed the heart of Jesus to get my desire that He has granted it. It cannot be changed now.”
  She blessed all her sisters, and Father Costanzo asked, without saying who she was, for a last word for “another daughter”, who was in fact the young Princess di Carignano who had hurried to the convent when she heard that Mother Mary was dying. “May our Lord bless her”, she murmured, “and give her real detachment from the world—for everything here comes to an end.” Bd Mary-of-the-Angels died on December 16, 1717, and seven years later her cause was introduced at the instance of Victor Amadeus II of Savoy; but she was not officially declared blessed until 1865.

A full account of this Carmelite mystic will be found in the book of Father G. O’Neill, Bd Mary of the Angels (1909). It is based upon a life written in Italian by Father Elias-of St-Teresa who had known the beata personally and was able to utilize what survived of an autobiography which she wrote by command of her superiors. A later Italian account is by Father Benedetto (1934).
1916 Blessed Honoratus Kozminski; received Capuchin habit and new name; 4 years later he was ordained; 1855 helped Blessed Mary Angela Truszkowska establish the Felician Sisters;
   
He was born
1825 in Biala Podlaska (Siedlce, Poland) and studied architecture at the School of Fine Arts in Warsaw. When Wenceslaus was almost sixteen, his father died. Suspected of participating in a rebellious conspiracy, the young man was imprisoned from April 1846 until the following March. In 1848 he received the Capuchin habit and a new name. Four years later he was ordained. In 1855 he helped Blessed Mary Angela Truszkowska establish the Felician Sisters.

Honoratus served as guardian in a Warsaw friary already in 1860. He dedicated his energies to preaching, to giving spiritual direction and to hearing confessions. He worked tirelessly with the Secular Franciscan Order.

The failed 1864 revolt against Czar Alexander III led to the suppression of all religious Orders in Poland. The Capuchins were expelled from Warsaw and forced to live in Zakroczym, where Honoratus continued his ministry and began founding twenty-six male and female religious congregations, whose members took vows but wore no religious habit and did not live in community. They operated much as today’s secular institutes do. Seventeen of these groups still exist as religious congregations.

The writings of Father Honoratus are extensive: forty-two volumes of sermons, 21 volumes of letters as well as 52 printed works on ascetical theology, Marian devotion, historical writings, pastoral writings — not counting his many writings for the religious congregations he founded.

In 1906, various bishops sought the reorganization of these groups under their authority; Honoratus defended their independence but was removed from their direction in 1908. He promptly urged the members of these congregations to obey the Church’s decisions regarding their future.

He “always walked with God,” said a contemporary. In 1895 he was appointed Commissary General of the Capuchins in Poland. Three years before he had come to Nowe Miasto, where he died and was buried. He was beatified in 1988.

Comment: The story is told that Francis and Brother Leo, his secretary, were once on a journey and Francis volunteered to tell Leo what perfect joy is. Francis began by saying what it was not: news that the kings of France, England, as well as all the world’s bishops and many university professors had decided to become friars, news that the friars had received the gift of tongues and miracles, or news that the friars had converted all the non-Christians in the world. No, perfect joy for them would be to arrive cold and hungry at St. Mary of the Angels, Francis’ headquarters outside Assisi, and be mistaken by the porter for thieves and beaten by the same porter and driven back into the cold and rain. Francis said that if, for the love of God, he and Leo could endure such treatment without losing their patience and charity, that would be perfect joy (cited in Regis Armstrong, O.F.M. Cap., and Ignatius Brady, O.F.M., Francis and Clare: The Complete Works, pages 165-166).
Honoratus worked very zealously to serve the Church, partly by establishing a great variety of religious congregations adapted to the special circumstances of Poland in those years. He could have retreated into bitterness and self-pity when the direction of those congregations was taken away from him; that was certainly a “perfect joy” experience. He urged the members of these groups to obey willingly and gladly, placing their gifts at the service of the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Quote: When the Church removed Honoratus from the direction of his religious congregations and changed their character, he wrote: “Christ’s Vicar himself has revealed God’s will to us, and I carry out this order with greatest faith.... Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that you are being given the opportunity to show heroic obedience to the holy Church.”

 Friday  Saints December  16 Décimo séptimo Kaléndas Januárii  

Pope Francis  PRAYER INTENTIONS FOR  December 2016
Universal: End to Child-Soldiers.
That the scandal of child-soldiers may be eliminated the world over.
Evangelization: Europe  That the peoples of Europe may rediscover the beauty, goodness, and
truth of the Gospel which gives joy and hope to life.
   `   

God Bless Mother Angelica 1923-2016
ewtnmissionaries.com

On Death and Life
"Man Needs Eternity -- and Every Other Hope, for Him, Is All Too Brief"
Пресвятая Богородице спаси нас!    (Santíssima Mãe de Deus, salva-nos!)
                      
 
                                                                           
     
We are the defenders of true freedom.
  May our witness unveil the deception of the "pro-choice" slogan.
40 days for Life Campaign saves lives Shawn Carney Campaign Director www.40daysforlife.com
Please help save the unborn they are the future for the world

It is a great poverty that a child must die so that you may live as you wish -- Mother Teresa
 Saving babies, healing moms and dads, 'The Gospel of Life'

"Man Needs Eternity -- and Every Other Hope, for Him, Is All Too Brief"
It Makes No Sense Not To Believe In GOD 
Every Christian must be a living book
wherein one can read the teaching of the gospel

Jesus brings us many Blessings
 
The more we pray, the more we wish to pray. Like a fish which at first swims on the surface of the water, and afterwards plunges down, and is always going deeper; the soul plunges, dives, and loses itself in the sweetness of conversing with God. -- St. John Vianney

  Month by Month of Saintly Dedications


The Rosary html Mary Mother of GOD -- Her Rosary Here
Mary Mother of GOD Mary's Divine Motherhood: FEASTS OF OUR LADY
     of the Virgin Mary to those who recite the Rosary

May 9 – Our Lady of the Wood (Italy, 1607) 
Months of Dedication
January is the month of the Holy Name of Jesus since 1902;
March is the month of Saint Joseph since 1855;
May, the month of Mary, is the oldest and most well-known Marian month, officially since 1724;
June is the month of the Sacred Heart since 1873;
July is the month of the Precious Blood since 1850;
August is the month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary;
September is the month of Our Lady of Sorrows since 1857;
October is the month of the Rosary since 1868;
November is the month of the Holy Souls in Purgatory since 1888;
December is the month of the Immaculate Conception.

In all, five months of the year are dedicated to Mary.
The idea of dedicating months came from Rome and promotion of the month of Mary owes much to the Jesuits.  arras.catholique.fr


Pray that the witness of 40 Days for Life bears abundant fruit, and that we begin again each day to storm the gates of hell until God welcomes us into the gates of heaven.

If you seek patience, you will find no better example than the cross. Great patience occurs in two ways:
either when one patiently suffers much, or when one suffers things which one is able to avoid and yet does not avoid.
Christ endured much on the cross, and did so patiently, because when he suffered he did not threaten;
he was led like a sheep to the slaughter and he did not open his mouth.-- St. Thomas Aquinas


  We begin our day by seeing Christ in the consecrated bread, and throughout the day we continue to see Him in the torn bodies of our poor. We pray, that is, through our work, performing it with Jesus, for Jesus and upon Jesus.
The poor are our prayer. They carry God in them. Prayer means praying everything, praying the work.
We meet the Lord who hungers and thirsts, in the poor.....and the poor could be you or I or any person kind enough to show us his or her love and to come to our place.
Because we cannot see Christ, we cannot express our love to Him in person.
But our neighbor we can see, and we can do for him or her what we would love to do for Jesus if He were visible.
-- Mother Teresa
My God, I believe, I adore, I trust and I love Thee.  I beg pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not love Thee.  O most Holy trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I adore Thee profoundly.
 I offer Thee the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the Tabernacles of the world,  in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference by which He is offended,
and by the infite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

I beg the conversion of poor sinners,  Amen Fatima Prayer, Angel of Peace
Mary's Divine Motherhood
Pope Francis and Pope Benedict XVI { 2013 } Catholic Church In China { article here}
1648 to1930 St. Augustine Zhao Rong and 120 Companions Christianity arrived in China by way of Syria -- 600s.
        Depending on China's relations with outside world,
Christianity for centuries was free to grow or forced to operate secretly.

How do I start the Five First Saturdays? 
Called in the Gospel “the Mother of Jesus,” Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as “the Mother of my Lord” (Lk 1:43; Jn 2:1; 19:25; cf. Mt 13:55; et al.). In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh, was none other than the Father's eternal Son, the second person of the Holy Trinity. Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly Mother of God (Theotokos). 
Catechism of the Catholic Church 495, quoting the Council of Ephesus (431): DS 251.
“The Blessed Virgin was eternally predestined, in conjunction with the incarnation of the divine Word, to be the Mother of God. By decree of divine Providence, she served on earth as the loving mother of the divine Redeemer, an associate of unique nobility, and the Lord's humble handmaid. She conceived, brought forth, and nourished Christ.”
The voice of the Father is heard, the Son enters the water, and the Holy Spirit appears in the form of a dove.
   THE spirit and example of the world imperceptibly instil the error into the minds of many that there is a kind of middle way of going to Heaven; and so, because the world does not live up to the gospel, they bring the gospel down to the level of the world. It is not by this example that we are to measure the Christian rule, but words and life of Christ. All His followers are commanded to labour to become perfect even as our heavenly Father is perfect, and to bear His image in our hearts that we may be His children. We are obliged by the gospel to die to ourselves by fighting self-love in our hearts, by the mastery of our passions, by taking on the spirit of our Lord.
   These are the conditions under which Christ makes His promises and numbers us among His children, as is manifest from His words which the apostles have left us in their inspired writings. Here is no distinction made or foreseen between the apostles or clergy or religious and secular persons. The former, indeed, take upon themselves certain stricter obligations, as a means of accomplishing these ends more perfectly; but the law of holiness and of disengagement of the heart from the world is geeral and binds all the followers of Christ.

Join Mary of Nazareth Project help us build the International Marian Center of Nazareth
http://www.worldpriest.com/
THE EUCHARIST, A MYSTERY TO BE BELIEVED POST-SYNODAL APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION
SACRAMENTUM CARITATIS OF THE HOLY FATHER BENEDICT XVI
There are over 10,000 named saints beati  from history
 and Roman Martyology Orthodox sources

Miracles by Century 100   200   300   400   500   600   700    800   900   1000    1100   1200   1300   1400  1500  1600  1700  1800   1900  Miracles_BLay Saints
Morning Prayer and Hymn    Meditation of the Day    Prayer for Priests    Our Bartholomew Family Prayer List  Here
We are called upon with the whole Church militant on earth to join in praising and thanking God for the grace and glory he has bestowed on his saints. At the same time we earnestly implore Him to exert His almighty power and mercy in raising us from our miseries and sins, healing the disorders of our souls and leading us by the path of repentance to the company of His saints, to which He has called us.
   They were once what we are now, travellers on earth they had the same weaknesses, which we have. We have difficulties to encounter so had the saints, and many of them far greater than we can meet with; obstacles from kings and whole nations, sometimes from the prisons, racks and swords of persecutors. Yet they surmounted these difficulties, which they made the very means of their virtue and victories. It was by the strength they received from above, not by their own, that they triumphed. But the blood of Christ was shed for us as it was for them and the grace of our Redeemer is not wanting to us; if we fail, the failure is in ourselves.
   THE saints and just, from the beginning of time and throughout the world, who have been made perfect, everlasting monuments of God’s infinite power and clemency, praise His goodness without ceasing; casting their crowns before His throne they give to Him all the glory of their triumphs: “His gifts alone in us He crowns.”
“The saints must be honored as friends of Christ and children and heirs of God, as John the theologian and evangelist says: ‘But as many as received him, he gave them the power to be made the sons of God....’ Let us carefully observe the manner of life of all the apostles, martyrs, ascetics and just men who announced the coming of the Lord. And let us emulate their faith, charity, hope, zeal, life, patience under suffering, and perseverance unto death, so that we may also share their crowns of glory” Exposition of the Orthodox Faith

Called in the Gospel the Mother of Jesus, Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as the Mother of my Lord (Lk 1:43; Jn 2:1; 19:25; cf. Mt 13:55; et al.). In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh, was none other than the Father's eternal Son,  the second person of the Holy Trinity.
Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly Mother of God (Theotokos).
Catechism of the Catholic Church 495, quoting the Council of Ephesus (431): DS 251.
Nine First Fridays Devotion to the Sacred Heart ... From the writings of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
On Friday during Holy Communion, He said these words to me, His unworthy slave, if I mistake not:
I promise you in the excessive mercy of my Heart that its all-powerful love will grant to all those who receive Holy Communion on nine first Fridays of consecutive months the grace of final repentance; they will not die under my displeasure or without receiving their sacraments, my divine Heart making itself their assured refuge at the last moment.
Margaret Mary was inspired by Christ to establish the Holy Hour and to pray lying prostrate with her face to the ground from eleven till midnight on the eve of the first Friday of each month, to share in the mortal sadness.
He endured when abandoned by His Apostles in His Agony, and to receive holy Communion on the first Friday of every month. In the first great revelation, He made known to her His ardent desire to be loved by men and His design of manifesting His Heart with all Its treasures of love and mercy, of sanctification and salvation.
He appointed the Friday after the octave of the feast of Corpus Christi as the feast of the Sacred Heart; He called her the Beloved Disciple of the Sacred Heart, and the heiress of all Its treasures. The love of the Sacred Heart was the fire which consumed her, and devotion to the Sacred Heart is the refrain of all her writings. In her last illness she refused all alleviation, repeating frequently: What have I in heaven and what do I desire on earth, but Thee alone, O my God, and died pronouncing the Holy Name of Jesus.
With regard to this promise it may be remarked: (1) that our Lord required Communion to be received on a particular day chosen by Him; (2) that the nine Fridays must be consecutive; (3) that they must be made in honor of His Sacred Heart, which means that those who make the nine Fridays must practice the devotion and must have a great love for our Lord; (4) that our Lord does not say that those who make the nine Fridays will be dispensed from any of their obligations or from exercising the vigilance necessary to lead a good life and overcome temptation; rather He implicitly promises abundant graces to those who make the nine Fridays to help them to carry out these obligations and persevere to the end; (5) that perseverance in receiving Holy Communion for nine consecutive First Firdays helps the faithful to acquire the habit of frequent Communion, which our Lord eagerly desires; and (6) that the practice of the nine Fridays is very pleasing to our Lord He promises such great reward, and all Catholics should endeavor to make nine Fridays.
How do I start the Five First Saturdays? by Fr. Tom O'Mahony.
On July 13,1917, Our Lady appeared for the third time to the three children of Fatima an showed them the vision of hell and made the now - famous thirteen prophecies. In this vision Our Lady said that 'GOD WISHES TO ESTABLISH IN THE WORLD DEVOTION to Her Immaculate Heart and that She would come TO ASK FOR THE COMMUNION OF REPARATION ON THE FIRST SATURDAYS...'  Eight years later, on December 10, 1925, Our Lady did indeed come back. She appeared (with the Child Jesus) to Lucia in the convent of the Dorothean Sisters in Pontevedra.
The Child Jesus spoke first:
'HAVE COMPASSION ON THE HEART OF YOUR MOST HOLY MOTHER WHICH IS COVERED WITH THORNS WITH WHICH UNGRATEFUL MEN PIERCE IT AT EVERY MOMENT, WHILE THERE IS NO ONE TO REMOVE THEM WITH AN ACT OF REPARATION.'

THE GREAT PROMISE
Our Lady then said: 'MY DAUGHTER LOOK AT MY HEART SURROUNDED WITH THORNS WITH WHICH UNGRATEFUL MEN PIERCE IT AT EVERY MOMENT BY THEIR BLASPHEMIES AND INGRATITUDE. YOU, AT LEAST, TRY TO CONSOLE ME, AND SAY THAT I PROMISE TO ASSIST AT THE HOUR OF DEATH WITH ALL THE GRACES NECESSARY FOR SALVATION, ALL THOSE WHO, ON THE FIRST SATURDAY OF FIVE CONSECUTIVE MONTHS GO TO CONFESSION AND RECEIVE HOLY COMMUNION, RECITE FIVE DECADES OF THE ROSARY AND KEEP ME COMPANY FOR A QUARTER OF AN HOUR WHILE MEDITATING ON MYSTERIES OF THE ROSARY, WITH THE INTENTION OF MAKING REPARATION TO ME.'

The Five Reasons
Lucia once asked this question of Our Lord and received as an answer: 'MY DAUGHTER, THE MOTIVE IS SIMPLE, THERE ARE FIVE KINDS OF OFFENCES AND BLASPHEMIES UTTERED AGAINST THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY: (1) BLASPHEMIES AGAINST THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION: (2) BLASPHEMIES AGAINST HER VIRGINITY: (3) BLASPHEMIES AGAINST HER DIVINE MATERNITY: (4) BLASPHEMIES OF THOSE WHO OPENLY SEEK TO FOSTER IN THE HEARTS OF CHILDREN INDIFFERENCE OR EVEN HATRED FOR THIS IMMACULATE MOTHER: (5) THE OFFENCES OF THOSE WHO DIRECTLY OUTRAGE HER IN HOLY IMAGES.'
From the above, it is easy to see that each of the Five Saturdays can correspond to a specific offence. By offering the graces received during each First Saturday as reparation for the offence being prayed for, the participant can hope to help remove the thorns from Our Lady's Heart.
What Do I Have To Do?
The devotion of First Saturdays, as requested by Our Lady of Fatima, carries with it the assurance of salvation. However, to derive profit from such a great promise of Our Lady, the devotion must be properly understood and duly performed.
The requirements as stipulated by Our Lady are as follows:
(1) CONFESSION, (2) COMMUNION, (3) FIVE DECADES OF THE ROSARY, (4) MEDITATION ON ONE OR MORE OF THE ROSARY MYSTERIES FOR FIFTEEN MINUTES, (5) TO DO ALL THESE THINGS IN THE SPIRIT OF REPARATION TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY, and (6) TO OBSERVE ALL THESE PRACTICES ON THE FIRST SATURDAY OF FIVE CONSECUTIVE MONTHS.
(1) CONFESSION: A reparative confession means that the confession should not only be good (valid and licit), but also be offered in the spirit of reparation, in this case, to Mary's Immaculate Heart. This confession may be made on the First Saturday itself or some days before or after the First Saturday within the preceding octave would suffice.
(2) COMMUNION: The communion of reparation must be sacramental duly received with the intention of making reparation. This offering, like the confession, is an interior act and so no external action to express the intention is needed.
(3) THE ROSARY: The Rosary mentioned here was indicated by the Portuguese word 'terco' which is commonly employed to denote a Rosary of five decades, since it forms a fourth of the full Rosary of 20 decades. This too must recited in a spirit of reparation.
(4) MEDITATION FOR FIFTEEN MINUTES: Here the meditation on one mystery or more is to be made without simultaneous recitation of the Rosary decade. As indicated, the meditation may be either on one mystery alone for 15 minutes, or on all 20 mysteries, spending about one minute on each mystery, or again, on two or more mysteries during the period. This can also be made before each decade spending three minutes or more in considering the mystery of the particular decade. This meditation has likewise to be made in the spirit of reparation to the Immaculate Heart.
(5) THE SPIRIT OF REPARATION: All these acts, as said above, have to be done with the intention of offering reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary for the offences committed against Her. Everyone who offends Her commits, so to speak, a two-fold offence, for these sins also offend her Divine Son, Christ, and so endanger our salvation. They give bad example to others and weaken the strength of society to withstand immoral onslaughts. Such devotions therefore make us consider not only the enormity of the offence against God, but also the effect of sins on human society as well as the need for undoing these social effects even when the offender repents and is converted. Further, this reparation emphasises our responsibility towards sinners who, themselves, will not pray and make reparation for their sins.
(6) FIVE CONSECUTIVE FIRST SATURDAYS: The idea of the Five First Saturdays is obviously to make us persevere in the devotional acts for these Saturdays and overcome initial difficulties. Once this is done, Our Lady knows that the person would become devoted to Her immaculate Heart and persist in practising such devotion on all First Saturdays, working thereby for personal self-reform and for the salvation of others.

Unless Russia is converted,