Sunday, November 29, 2015

Advent Meditation

By St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein)

When the days grow shorter and shorter, when --in a normal winter--the first snowflakes fall, then quietly and softly thoughts of Christmas begin to surface, and from the mere word a certain magic exudes that affects every heart. Even those of other faiths, or of no faith at all, to whom the story of the Child of Bethlehem has no meaning, prepare for the feast and even make plans to convey its joy here or there. Months and weeks in advance, there flows a warmth like a stream of love over the whole world. A festival of love and joy--that is the star which beckons all mankind in the first winter months.
Photo: R. Massaro

For the Christian, and especially for the Catholic Christian, it is yet something else. Him the star leads to the manger with the little Child who brings peace to earth. In countless endearing pictures, artists have created the scene for our eyes; ancient legends, replete with all the magic of childhood, sing to us about it. Whoever lives along with the Church hears the ancient chants and feels the longing of the spirit in the Advent hymns; and whoever is familiar with the inexhaustible fount of sacred liturgy is daily confronted by the great prophet of the Incarnation with his powerful words of warning and promise.

             Drop down dew from above and let the clouds rain
             the Just One! The Lord is near! Let us adore Him!
             Come, Lord, and do not delay! Jerusalem, rejoice
             with great joy, for your Savior comes to you!

From 17 to 24 December, the great O Antiphons to the Magnificat call out with ever greater longing and fervor their 'Come, to set us free.' And with still more promise (on the last Advent Sunday), 'Behold, all is fulfilled:' then, finally, 'Today you shall know that the Lord is coming and tomorrow you shall see His splendor.'

Photo: R. Massaro-St. Augustine Church Barberton, Ohio

Yes, on that evening when the lights on the tree are lit and the gifts are being exchanged, that unfulfilled longing is still there groping for another ray of Light until the bells for Midnight Mass ring out, and the miracle of that Holy Night is renewed upon altars bedecked with lights and flowers: 'And the Word was made flesh.' Now the moment of the blessed fulfillment has arrived.

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds

Sunday, November 22, 2015


Photo: R. Massaro St. Michael Byzantine Catholic Church Akron, Ohio


From the Life of St. Teresa of Jesus (Avila):

As often as the Lord commanded something of me in prayer and my confessor told me to do otherwise, the Lord returned and told me to obey my confessor; afterward His Majesty would change the confessor's mind, and he would agree with the Lord's command. When they forbade the reading of many books in the vernacular, I felt that prohibition very much because reading some of them was an enjoyment for me, and I could no longer do so since only the Latin editions were allowed. the Lord said to me: "Don't be sad, for I shall give you a living book." I was unable to understand why this was said to me, since I had not yet experienced any visions. Afterward, within only a few days, I understood very clearly, because I received so much to think about and such recollection in the presence of what I saw, and the Lord showed so much love for me by teaching me in many ways, that I had very little or almost no need for books.His Majesty had become the true book in which I saw the truth.
The Book of Her Life, Chap. 26, No. 5

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, OCDS

Friday, November 20, 2015


Photo: R. Massaro-Our Lady Comforter of the Afflicted Shrine Youngstown, Ohio

At the dawn of creation the eyes of God rested with satisfaction on the universe He created. At a second moment He looked with pleasure on the soul of Mary, as He was about to recreate a fallen world. So fresh, unsullied, so unsurpassingly beautiful she was. He smiled on the loveliest creature that his creative love had fashioned; He saw that she was good.

Her soul was a meeting-place. Here was goodness, for she was full of grace; here was beauty, for she was all-beautiful; here was truth, for here was the Word in her womb, the source of all truth. No wonder He found delight in her.
Pilgrims with Mary, John Moloney, P.P.

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, OCDS

Tuesday, November 10, 2015


Feast Day: January 9


Andrew was born at the beginning of the fourteenth century in Florence and entered the Carmelite Order there. He was elected provincial of Tuscany at the general chapter of Metz in 1348. He was made bishop of Fiesole on October 13, 1349, and gave the Church a wonderful example of love, apostolic zeal, prudence and love of the poor. He died on January 6, 1374.

God our Father,
you reveal that those who work for peace will be called your children.
Through the prayers of St. Andrew Corsini,
who excelled as a peacemaker,
help us to work without ceasing 
for that justice which brings true and lasting peace.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, OCDS

Sunday, November 1, 2015


The Order of Carmel will celebrate the feast of All Carmelite Saints on November 14. I'll be highlighting a few of the lesser-known saints of Carmel in preparation for the feast.

Saint Kuriakos Elias Chavara, Priest
Feast Day: January 3


Bl. Kuriakos Chavara was raised to the altar and enrolled in the calendar of Saints on November 23, 2014 by Pope Francis.

The miracle that was considered for the canonization of Blessed Chavara Kuriakose Elias was the instantaneous, total and stable cure of the squint eye of Maria Jose Kottarathil. She is the youngest child of Mr. Jose Thomas and Mrs. Marykutty Jose Kottarathil. She has two brothers, George, the eldest who is a Seminarian in the Pala Diocese and Febin who pursues university studies. Maria was born on 5 April 2005 at Pala, Kottayam District, Kerala, and was baptized in the St. Thomas Cathedral Church, Pala. She had the defect of congenital squint (alternating esotropia) in both her eyes, noticed clearly by her parents as well as those who knew her from about four or five months after her birth. Read more...


In the Arabian coast at Kainakary in Kuttanadu, in the diocese of Changanasesry, Kerala, India Kuriakose Elias Chavara was born on February 10, 1805 as the sixth child of parents Kuriakos and Mariam. The Chavara family is believed to be the descendant of the Pakalomattam family, one of the four that claim descent from the time of St.Thomas at Palayur, central Kerala. On 8th September 1805 the child Kuriakose was dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary at the Marian shrine in Vechoor.  Read more...

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, OCDS