Thursday, June 30, 2011


From the life of St. Teresa Margaret Redi
of the Sacred Heart of Jesus

" My God, Father,  Son, and Holy Ghost, prostrate before Your Infinite Majesty, I, Theresa Margaret of the Heart of Jesus, the lowest of creatures and the least of Your servants, humbly pray You to accept this act of renewal of the vows already made by me, in private, on the day of solemn commemoration of the most glorious Resurrection, vows that are not perpetual but to endure only for that time set me by obedience. It is my intention that this written renewal cover every good act performed from the time of taking the vows until the end of the period set by obedience. In the possession of that love and that humility which Your divine goodness has put into my heart, in Your presence, dear God, before You, Jesus, my Spouse, before you, Most Holy Mary, my Mother, I summon as witnesses by Guardian Angel, my Protector, Saint Joseph, my dear Mother, Saint Theresa, all the saints who are my advocates, all the Angels, all the Elect, that they may know for time and eternity that the profession I now make, although temporary, may, I hope and desire, become perpetual; furthermore, I call to witness not only all Paradise, but also all hell and its fallen angels, that those powers of perdition may have direct knowledge of the greatness of my love for my crucified Spouse, Jesus.

Spontaneously, then, my dearest God, freely, voluntarily, with the full accord of my will, with greatest joy of heart, I hereby renew, ratify, and re-promise in writing under the form of vow, made directly to You, Obedience, Chastity, and Poverty ...

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds

Monday, June 27, 2011

St. Luke Church
Danville, Ohio

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds

Sunday, June 26, 2011


Photo: R.Massaro(c)2011SpiritSinging
SS.Philip and James Canal Fulton, Ohio


Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, inebriate me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O good Jesus, hear me!
Within thy wounds hide me.
Never permit me to be separated from thee.
From the malignant enemy, defend me.
In the hour of my death call me;
And bid me come to thee
That with the saints I may praise thee
For all eternity. Amen.

(Photo: R. Massaro)

Peace be with you!
Rosmarie, ocds

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Saturday of Our Lady

(Photo: R. Massaro)

Your head crowns you like Carmel, how fair and pleasant you are. (Cant.7,5,6)

Mary's closing visit to Lourdes was on July 16 the feast which honors her under the title of Carmel. She came at sunset. Her choice of day must not have been an accident. The very name Carmel must have filled her with fond memories...

And in a sense Carmel linked two worlds, east and west, past and future. A mountain hallowed by prayer before she was born, a place that would do her honor from age to age. There are flowers on Mount Carmel when there are none elsewhere.

The Ascent of Mt. Carmel is a well-worn path travelled down through the centuries by countless members of the Order, which glories in the title of Carmel who have been richly rewarded for the ardor of the ascent, for in their souls have blossomed flowers of holiness of the rarest quality.

Let us rejoice, Beloved, and let us go forth to behold ourselves in your beauty. To the mountain and to the hill, to where the pure water flows...there you will show me what my soul has been seeking."
(an excerpt from Pilgrims with Mary, John Moloney P.P.)

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Three Words of Wisdom


Photo: R. Massaro(C)2011SpiritSinging
Loyola Retreat House Clinton, Ohio

"...As he was entering a village, ten lepers met him...When he saw them, he responded, "Go and show yourselves to the priests." On their way there they were cured. One of them, realizing that he had been cured, came back praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself on his face at the feet of Jesus and spoke his praises. This man was a Samaritan..."Were not all ten made whole? Where are the other nine?
(Luke 17:11-19)

How does praise and thanksgiving fit into our prayer life?  Are we a people, a soul, who is constantly asking for and receiving favors from the Lord. Do we remember to return and give thanks? Are we thankful for even the little gifts we take for granted?

As Secular Carmelites, let us be inspired by St. Therese of the Child Jesus who said "Everything is a grace." Yes, we should be very grateful to God for the many gifts he gives us.  If we are seeking first his kingdom, he truly does take care of our temporal needs. We can be very grateful for our family, friends, job, shelter, clothing, food, etc. We can be thankful for our health and the ability to see and hear and speak and read and understand things. Let us be most grateful for the great gift of faith. This is a precious gift we can take for granted, especially if our hearts have been converted for a long time.  Many people have the same information about Jesus Christ and his Church that we have, yet do not believe. Many people have the same information we have about Our Lady and the Sacraments, yet they do not believe. Many people do not understand that we can have an intimate friendship with Jesus Christ through prayer and the gift of contemplation. As Secular Carmelites, we should be most grateful that we have been called to a life of prayer and that the gift of prayer and a desire to be one with God has been placed deeply in our heart.

As Secular Carmelites, we are to give witness in the world of our gift of prayer. We must give witness to this life of intimate friendship with God.  One way we do this is by our daily reception of the Eucharist, which means, "thanksgiving."  Our Rule and Constitution call us to be a Eucharistic people. Yes, a people of thanksgiving!  Aha! Another challenge. Can we be grateful for not only the joys in life, but in the sorrows that life holds?  Are we able to find the hidden joy and peace of heart in accepting all that God sends us?  Are we able to give thanks for His will, even if it entails great suffering?  These are all challenges that faced the saints. If we are open to it, God will give us the same gift of possessing heroic virtue. 

The Secular Carmelite is called to pray and seek the face of God in prayer on behalf of the Church. Let us remember the "unchurched" as well, those who do not know God or love him. Let us thank him on behalf of those who do not thank him.  Let us love him for those who do not love him. Let us ask him to open their hearts to the gift of faith and love, the free gift that was given to us.  Perhaps someone prayed for us and our conversion. For this person, let us give thanks.

Let us ask God for the gift of self-knowledge, that he may reveal to us those faults and failings that make us unclean before him. However, let us seek him and implore him for mercy and healing, our one true remedy-Christ Our Lord, who is not afraid to touch the unclean leper, who has the power to make us a truly thankful people.

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Stained Glass Scapulars-Reflections on the Secular Carmelite Rule

From the Rule of St. Albert:

As the life of man upon earth is a warfare and all who live piously in Christ shall suffer persecution; moreover your adversary, the devil, goes about seeking whom he may devour. Endeavor, therefore, with all diligence to put on the armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the snares of the devil. Gird your loins with the girdle of chastity and guard your hearts with holy thought, for it is written: a holy thought shall preserve you...

What are some of the snares of the devil  in which we can be trapped ? The dictionary states that a snare is a "skillful maneuver."  It is a trap to entangle one's prey.We know from Scripture that Satan is intelligent, cunning, and deceitful. He knows our weaknesses and plays upon them.  We must guard ourselves with prayer to build our spiritual strength for the time of temptation and trial that is a part of our daily life. We must strive to guard the door of our heart and mind and be diligent about what we let enter the temple of the Holy Spirit.

As Secular Carmelites, we build these spiritual muscles by being faithful to prayer each day.  God does the work of purifying our heart so that we can see the snares of the devil before us and avoid them. We are called to receive the Sacraments on a regular basis, these vehicles of grace, too, strengthen us for the perilous journey we must make toward union with God.

As Secular Carmelites, we must also have an intense love for Our Lady, especially to her under the title of "Our Lady of Mt. Carmel." She will defend us now and at the hour of our death if we keep close to her every moment of our lives.

St. Therese of the Child Jesus is just one saint that comes to mind as we discuss this subject of preparing for battle with our enemy. She prepared herself for the difficult moments of monastery life with prayer. She was able to respond charitably in these difficult moments, because she put on the armor of love. She fought the good fight and now we call her "Doctor of Love. "

St. Therese knew herself through prayer, she received the same gift of self-knowledge that God will give to each of us if we remain faithful to prayer. The devil doesn't need to reveal our weaknesses, the Lord himself does this for us in prayer so that we may prepare ourselves for those moments of spiritual battle.We know that this battle is mainly an interior battle, it includes our intellect, our memory, and our will. The three powers of our soul that St. John of the Cross writes so eloquently about.

Let us pray for each other that we be given the gift of self-knowledge, that we may know our weaknesses and faults; through this knowledge we will be given the spiritual insight to prepare for battle with that "roaring lion" who seeks to destroy us.

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Carmelite Saint of the Day


"Elijah came upon Elisha and threw his cloak over him. Immediately Elisha left the oxen and ran after Elijah as his attendant"(1Kgs 19:19-21). Elisha was filled with the spirit of Elijah; among the many signs he performed, he cured Naaman of leprosy and raised a dead child to life. He lived among the sons of the prophets and in God's name he frequently intervened in the affairs of the Israelites.

Mindful of its origin on Mount Carmel, the Carmelite Order desired to perpetuate the memory of the great prophets' presence and deeds through the liturgical celebration of Sts. Elijah and Elisha. Thus the General Chapter of 1399 decreed the celebration of the feast of St. Elisha. Through his fidelity to the true God and by his service to God's people, St. Elisha effectively illustrates the meaning of the prophetic office in our day.
(From the Carmelite Proper)

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Spiritual Life Dictionary

CONFITEOR (Latin: I confess).

The Confiteor.(so called from the first word, confiteor, I confess) is a general confession of sins; it is used in the Roman Rite at the beginning of Mass and on various other occasions as a preparation for the reception of some grace. (Catholic Encyclopedia).

Many people, even daily communicants, are unaware that they receive absolution of venial sins at the beginning of every Mass. When we recite that all familiar prayer: "I confess to Almighty God..." we are making a confession and the priest then absolves our venial sins.

St. Thomas Aquinas teaches three things about the Holy Eucharist that is found in the teaching of the Church in the Catechism. Here are the three spiritual benefits of receiving Holy Communion:

1.  Holy Communion increases our union with Christ and with his Church.

2.  It preserves and renews the life of grace received at Baptism and Confirmation and makes us grow in love for our neighbor.

3.  It strengthens us in charity, wipes away venial sins and preserves us from mortal sin in the future.

As Secular Carmelites we are called to the frequent reception of Communion and Confession. Attending Mass daily and receiving communion is one way we can be cleansed of even venial sins. For those who God is calling to lead a life of perfection, the sacramental life is very important, in that, we receive the grace needed to live a life of charity lived out in service to our neighbor.
Let us pray for each other!

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, OCDS

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Carmelite Quote

St. Teresa of Jesus of the Andes
Carmelite Virgin

How happy I feel when I can tell Him: Everything I am belongs to You, my Jesus. My heart must only love You and love souls, since these are sprinkled with your blood. When I sacrifice myself for them, I but sacrifice myself in order to gather up your adorable blood that it not be lost. And so, I do save souls, but without losing sight of You, my divine Star. My intelligence, my thinking, my memory belongs to You. I have no need to know created things nor to study human wisdom. You are my Wisdom, my book of eternal Truth. My body too, I have come to offer up, because I love You, and because from the cross You teach me to crucify it.

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds