Tuesday, January 27, 2015


A Peaceful Demonstration

Photo: R. Massaro: St. George Romanian Catholic Church-Canton, Ohio

Recently, while reading the news I heard about a peaceful demonstration that turned violent.  I'm sure we can all agree that this is not surprising, it's a sign of the times in which we are now living. Each day we read about shootings and killings. We hear about the tragic outcome of a situation involving a seemingly well-liked, quiet, person; a good neighbor who "snaps" and goes on a violent rampage. It seems that even well-meaning persons who gather to support an issue give way to name-calling, physical attacks, and violence.

I suggest, that as Catholics, as Secular Carmelites, we engage in a "peaceful demonstration" each day by praying the Rosary for world peace and for peace in our hearts and in our families.  Our Lady herself, Our Lady of Fatima, asked us to pray the Rosary each day for peace. Are we listening to her? Let us demonstrate to the world that we are a people of prayer who trust in God!

We must strengthen our soul by prayer so that we can be virtuous in good times and in the struggles of life. We can't let our spiritual life get so out of hand that we harbor anger and hatred against our neighbor, or we too will "snap" if caught off guard. Our "peaceful demonstration" can turn spiritually violent in a matter of moments if we are not prepared for the battles of life. We can't attend Mass or pray the Rosary one minute and then in the next moment leave church and swear at the driver in front of us. We can't pray the Rosary one minute and then abuse our spouse or our children. We can't pray the Rosary one minute and then complain about Church teaching, a teaching not to our liking. Peace can only be obtained with a true conversion of heart and an authentic prayer life.

We are so busy that we find it difficult to take the time to spend an extra 15 minutes or so in prayer each day. Our Lady told us that the Rosary is a powerful prayer, that it can bring an end to wars! Our Lady of Fatima said this to the three visionaries:

"You must recite the Rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war..." 

Our Lady is a powerful intercessor before the Throne of God. Let us beg her to obtain peace for the world. And let us not be discouraged when reading the news. Even Sr. Lucia, one of the visionaries became frightened when she learned she would have to remain alone in the world, without her cousins to spread devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, but Our Lady consoled her and said, "I will never leave you, my Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God."

As Catholic Christians, we are a Eucharistic people who should be filled with hope, thanksgiving, and joy! We have Our Lord with us! He left us an awesome gift, himself. We are free to attend Mass and receive him each day. If we remain faithful, we will be with him forever.

Let us be witnesses in the world of God's abiding love for us. Let us join together in a "peaceful demonstration" by praying the Rosary for world peace.

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie of the Hearts of Jesus and Mary, ocds

Thursday, January 15, 2015


St. Teresa of Jesus (Avila):

I sometimes experienced, as I said, although very briefly, the beginning of what I will now speak about. It used to happen, when I represented Christ within me in order to place myself in His presence, or even while reading, that a feeling of the presence of God would come upon me unexpectedly so that I could in no way doubt He was within me or I totally immersed in Him. This did not occur after the manner of a vision. I believe they call the experience "mystical theology." The soul is suspended in such a way that it seems to be completely outside itself. The will loves; the memory, it seems to me, is almost lost. For, as I say, the intellect does not work, but it is as though amazed by all it understands because God desires that it understand with regard to the things His Majesty represents to it, that it understands nothing.

Before this, I felt very habitually a tenderness that, it seems to me, can in part be acquired, a favor that is neither entirely of the senses nor entirely spiritual. Everything is given by God, but it seems we can help a great deal to receive this tenderness by considering our lowliness and the ingratitude we have shown toward God, the many things He did for us, His Passion with such heavy sorrows, His life so afflicted, and by delighting in the sight of His works, His grandeur, how He loves us, and in the many other things that those who truly want to improve spiritually are often able to find all around them, even though they do not seek to do so deliberately. 
The Book of Her Life-Chap. 10, 1-2

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie of the Hearts of Jesus and Mary, ocds

Sunday, January 4, 2015



St. Teresa of Jesus (Avila): "Poisonous creatures turn everything they eat into poison."

Recently, I updated our community's status on Facebook and sifted through some of the posts from "friends." I am more and more disheartened by the language used and items posted by not only those "in the world," but by yes, religious persons.

It seems vulgar speech, attitude, and lifestyle is present everywhere. I feel we are in the midst of the Culture of Vulgarity, which leads to nothing less than spiritual death.

Our Lord told us that it is not what goes into a man that makes him unclean but what comes out of his mouth that makes him impure.

It is not what goes into a man's mouth that makes him impure; it is what comes out of his mouth. (Matthew 15:11)

And more about the sins of speech from the Letter of James:

But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so. Does a spring send forth fresh water and bitter from the same opening? [James 3:8-11]

Sometimes, it's hard to distinguish when vulgarity crosses the line and becomes a sin of blasphemy or profanity. Here are definitions of abusive language from Catholic Straight Answers. Visit their website-catholicstraighanswers.com


Blasphemy is contempt for God, expressed in thought, word, or action.  To use words either vocally or mentally against God which show hatred, reproach, disrespect, or defiance is sinful.  This prohibition also applies to the Blessed Mother and the saints as well as sacred things or Church related practices.  Moreover, blasphemy includes invoking God’s name to legitimize crimes or harmful actions against others.  The Catechism notes that blasphemy is a grave sin.


Cursing is to call down evil from God, and usually involves specifically invoking God’s name, not just His power.  For instance, all of us have heard someone say, “God damn it,” or even “God damn you”.  Here a person is commanding God, who is all powerful, all good, and all just, to damn someone (or something) in Hell for all eternity.  Who are we to ask God to damn anyone or to bestow some evil upon anyone?  Objectively, this act is a mortal sin.


Profanity itself is wrong, even though such words may not specifically involve the name of God.  God gave mankind the gift of language which should be used positively.  Language should build good relationships with other individuals, and enable people to share their lives intimately with each other.  Sadly, more and more, we hear in normal conversation profanity– especially those four letter words, like s*** and f***.  We also hear people speak profanely about good and holy topics; for example, they profane human sexuality or the act of marital love. Such language is not only negative, vulgar, impolite, and offensive, but also debases the dignity of each human being.  Moreover, this language reveals not only a person’s bad attitude and lack of respect for others, but also his own immaturity and insecurity in dealing with others.  In using these words, the person builds barriers rather than bridges with another person.


As Secular Carmelites, we should be on guard as to what we let enter our heart and what we express with our lips.  Let us rise above the culture of vulgarity so that we are not like those today who spew evil and filth with every sentence that comes out of their mouth. St. Teresa describes these persons aptly:"Poisonous creatures turn everything they eat into poison..."

St. John of the Cross describes the soul as the "most beautiful of all creatures," let us not mar the beauty of our soul by vulgar, lewd, and profane speech.

Let us pray for each other!

Peace be with you!

Rosemarie of the Heart of Jesus and Mary, ocds