Sunday, May 31, 2009
To live in the midst of the world without wishing its pleasures; to be a member of each family, yet belonging to one; to share all sufferings; to penetrate all secrets; to heal all wounds; to go from men to God and offer him their prayers; to return from God to men to bring pardon and hope; to have a heart of fire for charity and a heart of bronze for chastity; to teach and to pardon, console and bless always, my God, what a life! And it is yours, O Priest of Jesus Christ!
"'This is the hour of holiness presented to us by God. It is the hour that we not only must welcome, but also present to the world as the most beautiful and attractive event. The walk that will lead us to recapture the gift that was given to us begins here and now, with us. To begin this walk with a renewed eye that sees through the events, hears the cry of humanity, and faces the challenges implied in holiness and fraternity.' (2007, Giuliana)
Caterina continues with words from Bishop Giaquinta,
These words – also validated and reiterated by our 'Father' – impel us to a radical and maximalist effort proper to holiness. The Founder writes, 'Sons and daughters, this is no longer the hour for empty words or controversies, but for action. We were born revolutionaries, but if we don’t react to the possible danger of middle-class attitudes, we run the risk of remaining outdated… I beg you, in God’s name, to talk less but to pray and pay more. Christ is the one who reveals the Father, but in order to bring about such revelation He paid with his own person. We must walk in His footsteps. For this is what the Church and the world expect from us. All the years past…claim our consistency, our generosity, and adherence to a risky acceptance perhaps greater that the initial one' (IV. Letter of 1974).
For us, too, today is the hour of saints. Today, we are called to prove that holiness is a necessity in this historical time, and in the Church that we love. This is the hour of God, of the Holy One, Whom we are called to re-incarnate, as it were, in our selves, and in our life, especially during this particular year. 'For I, the Lord, am your God' (Lev 11:44). (Caterina Fava, Nov. 2008)
Spirit of light and fire, stir up in us the gifts You bestowed on us at the moment of our baptism. Spirit of holiness, let this be the hour that we open our hearts to You, as You are already present and acting in our lives. Spirit of love, transform our hearts into temples of adoration before the Father and sanctuaries of peace for our brothers and sisters. Spirit of joy and peace, may the Easter joy that Christ has released upon His Church make us credible witnesses of the mission entrusted to us.
Saturday, May 30, 2009
We know that the general Assembly will be a strong moment for the entire Institute, and the merging point of all our endeavors. The Assembly is a time of formation, of validation and revision, a time to be strengthened and invited back to the world. It is an important moment in our history; a moment that we must live with hope in our heart – the hope for a “new Pentecost.”
Our hope not only is expectation for new things to come, but also unceasing prayer. It is through a silent and humble prayer of petition, in trusting abandonment to Our Lady, that today we, somehow, anticipate the new journey of the Institute, which will practically begin with the convocation of the Assembly.
Our hope is steeped in Mary, as in a sure source of divine grace, and in the example of her dedication to God. It was at this source that the Founder quenched his own thirst. At this river of flowing grace, he found the strength to peacefully entrust himself into the hands of God, so much so that his abandonment, his trust and hope, fashioned his life into a beautiful and harmonious masterpiece. Grace transformed him into a “wonder”, a “genius”, as it were, of faithful love for his Spouse the Church, of dedication to all people, “until the end”, and of a revolutionary strength that made him capable to bring about the dream of holiness and of brotherhood which God placed in his heart. (Giuliana Spigone, Dec. 8, 2003)
Friday, May 29, 2009
God of love, inflame us with love.
Lord, I know that you have loved me from eternity.
You love me and long to make my relationship of love with you stronger and stronger throughout the years.
Grant that this knowledge be the light that leads my every step, the norm that guides my every action, and especially the flame that burns in my heart instilling renewed strength for my journey. (Bishop Giaquinta)
Heavenly Father, send us your Spirit so we may grow in knowledge of how much you love us, we may be deeply receptive to your love, we may cry out to you continually, and we may be inflamed with love for you and, therefore, for each of your children.
(Contributed by Monica Hejkal)
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Come Holy Spirit inspire the Apostolic Oblates to be women of the future, courageous and builders of hope as they prepare for their General Assembly.
Love: the container of all the gifts. We were born for love, live for love and have in our hearts to die for love. It is the air that we breathe; we breathe because of love! Love is ALL – We exist because of the ALL. Holy Spirit you are the key to this container of love. With you we have access, awareness and ability to return love for love; to love as we have been loved; to live on love; to live for love; to be love! All that we do is nothing unless we turn the key and release the already given gift of love – the Spirit!
Like Mary we must give a nod of acceptance; we must say YES. The power of love will come over us but we have to show our wiliness to open and be opened, to receive and to give. Love is our greatest tool in this life, it covers a multitude of sins, it casts out all fear and it will help us to persevere and conquer all evil. Without love we are nothing.
Oh Lord, my heart sometimes feels empty because I do not go to the storehouse that you have given me the key to open. How silly to go anywhere without provisions. How silly to do anything without calling on your Spirit, allowing your Spirit to invade me, guide me, strengthen me…I worry, fret, nag, whine and sin all because I do not call on your Spirit of Love to be with me. Filled with love may I have the courage to change in order to be a builder of hope with the Holy Spirit as my guide. Amen.
(Contributed by Teresa Monaghen, A.O.)
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Make us capable of living fully in You, free from ourselves, purified in mind and heart.
Seeing with the eyes of Christ, I can give to others much more than their outward necessities; I can give them the look of love which they crave. Here we see the necessary interplay between love of God and love of neighbor which the First Letter of John speaks of with such insistence. If I have no contact whatsoever with God in my life, then I cannot see in the other anything more than the other, and I am incapable of seeing in him the image of God.
But if in my life I fail completely to heed others, solely out of a desire to be “devout” and to perform my “religious duties”, then my relationship with God will also grow arid. It becomes merely “proper”, but loveless. Only my readiness to encounter my neighbor and to show him love makes me sensitive to God as well. Only if I serve my neighbor can my eyes be opened to what God does for me and how much he loves me.
The saints—consider the example of Blessed Teresa of Calcutta—constantly renewed their capacity for love of neighbor from their encounter with the Eucharistic Lord, and conversely this encounter acquired its real- ism and depth in their service to others. (Pope Benedict XVI, Deus Caritas Est, 18)
Father, send us Your Spirit to expand our hearts so we may receive the plan of love You desire for us today. Let every divine encounter bear fruit in our hearts and give us a greater capacity to love. Purify our intentions and make room in our hearts for our brothers and sisters’ needs.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
You ask the maximum love from us on behalf of the men and women of our time.
It is in the Cenacle that Jesus gives His body and blood as food, leading to the transformation of His Apostles into Himself. According to the commentary of St. Augustine, it is not we who transform the divine food into ourselves, rather it is the divine food that transforms us into Itself.
Christ has an infinite and unifying love. He wishes to communicate it to us so that we may base our relations with one another on it. Our love is to reach the magnitude of self-giving service; our unity is to be modeled on the Trinity.
In our effort to enter into the mystery of God's maximalism, how can we ignore the great lessons of the Cenacle? For the Cenacle is the place and time in which Jesus shows us the wonders of His maximum love and reveals to us the depth and design of God's divine extravagance. (Bishop Giaquinta, The Cenacle, Ch. 3)
Come Holy Spirit, enkindle our hearts with the fire of Your love. Give us the grace to rise above the mediocrity that leads us away from Your invitation to be loved. May we respond to Your gifts through our acts of selfless love toward our brothers and sisters.
Monday, May 25, 2009
You need to recall the baptism of John; a baptism of repentance. For until you repent, you will remain in that place that you are now.
You cannot invite a guest into your home through a closed door. Only through a door opened may the guest enter.
If you truly and wholly repent, you can in humility be fully contrite before the Lord. The door is now open and you stand before it, welcoming the guest, anticipating his arrival.
You may now through Grace, contemplate His presence, and receive what is of the will of the Father.
We wish to learn the new language from You in order to offer to all the good news of God’s infinite love.
When they hand you over, do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say. You will be given at that moment what you are to say. For it will not be you who speak but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. (Mt. 10:19-20)
Come Holy Spirit, teach us the language of God, the language of love that speaks to our hearts at every moment. It is this love that impelled the Father to give us His Son and which He commanded us to love one another. Fill us with the gift of piety so we too may communicate this gift of love.
Sunday, May 24, 2009
May 24, 1962-2009
Departure of the fist Oblates from
Thought for this special day day ... Giuliana Spigone
In order to be apostles of holiness we must never forget that at the same time, we must strive to be holy apostles!
Said another way, we must earnestly desire and strive to allow God's Holiness to infuse and transform us as it flows through us to our neighbor and our world.
THANK YOU FOR BEING HOLY APOSTLES AND TAKING THE COURAGEOUS STEP TO COME TO THE STATES!!
Love, Teresa and the Pro Sanctity Family
Make us ready to embrace the universality You ask of us.
Saint Paul had understood well that only in Christ can humanity find redemption and hope. Therefore, he perceived that the mission was pressing and urgent to proclaim “the promise of life in Christ Jesus” (2 Tm 1:1), “our hope” ( 1 Tm 1:1), so that all peoples could be co-heirs and co-partners in the promise through the Gospel (Cf. Eph 3:6).
He was aware that without Christ humanity is “without hope and without God in the world” (Eph 2:12)—“without hope because they were without God” (Spe Salvi, No. 3).
In fact, “anyone who does not know God, even though he may entertain all kinds of hopes, is ultimately without hope, without the great hope that sustains the whole of life (cf. Eph 2:12)” (Ivi, No. 27).
(Pope Benedict XVI, 2008 World Mission Day)
Lord, we want to be faithful to mission of holiness You have entrusted to us, but we can't do it alone! Send us Your Holy Spirit to fill us with love and trust so we may always be ready to proclaim the reason for our hope.
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Make us perceptive and attentive to Your new proposals to us:
“I pray not only for them, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me.
And I have given them the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one, that the world may know that you sent me, and that you loved them even as you loved me.
Father, they are your gift to me. I wish that where I am they also may be with me, that they may see my glory that you gave me, because you loved me before the foundation of the world.
Righteous Father, the world also does not know you, but I know you, and they know that you sent me.
I made known to them your name and I will make it known, that the love with which you loved me may be in them and I in them” (Jn. 17:20-26).
Lord, Jesus, You offer yourself so that all may be drawn into the life, love, and communion of the Trinity and so that all may come to know the Father. May we receive Your invitation to abide in You and remain in You so that your proposal for the fullness of unity may become a reality!
(Contributed by Jessi Kary, AO)
Friday, May 22, 2009
Help us understand the Father’s will:
our brothers and sisters’ needs
and the authentic answer to today’s challenges
We come to You, Holy Spirit, with a heart full of love, with a Marian heart! We wish to understand God’s will and do it like “Mary , the Virgin of Nazareth, who listened and responded with generosity to God’s plan of love. “Her prompt “yes” allowed her to become the Mother of God. Mary, after this first “yes” had to repeat it many times, even up to the culminating moment of the crucifixion of Jesus.” (Benedict XVI, January 20, 2009)
Help us, Holy Spirit, to be good listeners and doers of God’s will every day, every moment as Mary was! Give us eyes to see our brothers and sisters’ needs and help us respond to them as Jesus would. Today’s challenges are many! Spirit of truth, enlighten our mind! Help us see the truth in every matter; help us come in touch with Jesus the Truth! He will strengthen us to profess the truth in love in the midst of today’s lies! Truth about the sacredness of life; truth about family life; truth about the order of love, holiness and brotherhood established by God. Spirit of light and fire, Spirit of holiness, listen to our prayer!
(Contributed by Franca Salvo)
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Come, enlighten our minds and inflame our hearts.
May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you a Spirit of wisdom and revelation resulting in knowledge of him. May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call, what are the riches of glory in his inheritance among the holy ones, and what is the surpassing greatness of his power for us who believe, in accord with the exercise of his great might, which he worked in Christ, raising him from the dead and seating him at his right hand in the heavens (Ephesians 1: 17-20)
Holy Spirit, increase the capacity of our hearts so we may receive the glory of the Father which You wish to bestow on us, as His beloved sons and daughters. As we contemplate Your Son, may we grow in knowledge of Your particular love for each of us.
Continue to draw our hearts to Yours, O Lord, for You desire our holiness. Help us to receive the Holy Spirit's loving action in our lives and give us the trust to respond to His promptings with generosity and joy. May our lives be witnesses of Trinitarian love and instruments that allow our brothers and sisters to encounter You!
Please join us daily as we begin our novena in preparation for the feast of Pentecost.
Feel free to add your intentions under comments. We would like to pray for the General Assembly of the Apostolic Oblates, as well as for the Jacob family.
Friday, May 8, 2009
Sharon, dear Sharon, good-bye!
We wish to thank you for your life spent in peace, love, and joy. We thank you for being a woman of praise and thanksgiving, a caring daughter, a loving spouse, a tender mother, a joyful sister, a sensitive friend.
Sharon, thank you for using your talents well, for encouraging your children first, and then others, to use their God-given talents and do their best to make a difference in the world.
Thank you for wanting what God wanted from you, for doing His holy will in peace, trusting in His love for you. You had a wonderful sense of self, of your dignity as a beloved daughter of God!
You lived in peace and serenity regardless of what sorrows you experienced: the death of your beloved husband, the trial of cancer, the losses and challenges of daily life.
You drew strength from praying the Word of God, receiving the Eucharist, trusting God, rejoicing in the love and care of your children and grand-children, of Linda and Larry, Jim and Diane, your mother, and your friends.
You smiled and kept your sense of humor even in the last days of your life on earth! May you be blessed! Sharon, often, very often, we heard you saying, “I had a wonderful life, I bless the Lord for what He has given me. I offer all to Him for my children, for promoting the culture of life, peace, holiness, and brotherhood in the world. If I get better, I will continue to enjoy life, beauty, and do my best… If God calls me, I am ready! I go to be with Rick and my loved ones in the joy of God’s presence! I am blessed! I love you; I love my children, I love you all. I will continue to love you from Heaven! Life is beautiful!”
You, Sharon, are beautiful! Thank you, Sharon! We love you!
We offer our deep condolences to you, Kathryn, to you Lara, Alisa, Ryan and Sara, Scott and Michelle, Anne and Charles, Neal, Lindsey and Tim and Alex; to you, Linda and Larry, Jim and Diane, and to you grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
With love and prayers, The Pro Sanctity Family
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
Mar 22, 1945 - May 5, 2009
FUNERAL SERVICES Saturday, 10am at the 72nd Street Chapel to St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church at 10:30am. Interment Resurrection Catholic Cemetery. Wake Service Friday 7pm at the 72nd Street Chapel. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials to the Apostolic Oblates. JOHN A. GENTLEMAN MORTUARIES 72nd STREET CHAPEL 1010 North 72nd St., 391-1664
Monday, May 4, 2009
Our life is a story written all over with letters of love and pain. They help us to live, to console. They make us strong in adversity and in difficulty. They bring a message of faith in God Who uses even pain to enable us to perceive His infinite joy. There is a lot of peace and a lot of hope in each of us. Not by chance our Founder wished to call us "Sowers of Hope. We wish to sow seeds of hope in the world of today. But we need a lot of patience and self surrender in God Who only can give fruitfulness to our action.
In these days I have experienced the patient love of a mother, the silent suffering, quiet heroic of a spouse. Sharon Jochim, a Cooperative Oblate from Omaha, has lost her husband, a young man of 52, father of eight. In the midst of pain for her sudden loss, she found strength to fight the incredible, to overcome her fears, to sublimate her love, to accept life as mission of love for her children. This event has been a strengthening of our own faith, a new commitment of each of us to sustain her. We from afar, with our prayer, those of Omaha with signs of solidarity and sympathy.
Let us celebrate the Pasch of the Lord, the New Life that is given to us every day, but is so overwhelming, felt and joyful during this Holy Season. May peace blossom in our hearts amidst the difficulties of always. Mortal sadness and hope that keep us alive are part of our lives. They touch us deeply at this time of Crucifixion and Resurrection. There is always in us a veil of nostalgia, a "desire for the more", and nostalgia of eternal. At the same time, it is alive and strong, a promise of new life, of an oblation always more generous, heroic, capable of giving a new expression to the world in which we live and to the entire world, still unknown to us, but becoming now our new responsibility.
All sadness is turned into joy on Easter Sunday even though we are not always aware of it. The mystery of the Risen Lord is announced discreetly, silently without angels and earthquakes, without apparitions or bright lights, with simple signs. an empty tomb, a dropped linen. These signs become light: faith is born. We believe in Love even though facing an empty tomb.
May the Lord allow each of us to be attentive to all the experiences and all the "colors" of life. May He give us a perseverant love, fidelity to our oblation so that we may become strong and discreet lights of the Risen Lord. Our Founder, immersed now in the contemplation of the Risen Lord, intercedes for us to Mary who loved much, Mary our Sweet Mother of Trust. He asks from her to give us courage to repeat our "Eccomi", "Here, I am Lord," without reserves, without measures. May the Holy Spirit, permanent source of peace, open the hearts and minds of many young people to the divine call. May He give them the courage to walk the demanding and courageous road of charity and a generous commitment.
We give thanks to the Lord for the gift of fidelity that once again we renew today, May 1st, the Feast of our Covenant with the Lord. The Lord loves us infinitely and asks us to choose Him with our whole lives.
How could we say no to Christ the Lord Who became man for us, entered into the limitations of time and space, unceasingly announced the word of everlasting life, became a neighbor to every man and woman up to His death and resurrection in order to make us experience the passionate love of the Father Who is always ready to welcome us as we are? Dearest ones, let us once again renew our yes to the Lord, yes to the gift of life, yes to the grace of Baptism that made us children of God, yes to the call to holiness and brotherhood, yes to the Pro Sanctity Apostolate, yes to the Apostolic Oblation.
Let us ask the Lord to make us faithful in the journey we have already begun, and let us entrust our Pro Sanctity family to Him.
In a very special way we want to pray for and wish the best to Monica who today starts her journey of formation as an Aspirant Apostolic Oblate. For you, Monica, we ask the Lord to make you holy and help you fall ever deeper in love with Jesus Christ, our Redeemer. Always turn your gaze and your heart toward Him to live ever more intimately united to your Savior.
Jesus has chosen you and has had a love of predilection for you. He looked at your availability and wanted you to be His so that you might give yourself unconditionally to Him and to your brothers and sisters. Search always for communion with Him, contemplate and adore Him, let yourself be assimilated by Him so to be a witness of maximum love for those you meet on your journey.
To all of you who participate in this celebration: through the intercession of our Founder may the Lord grant the gifts of the Holy Spirit so that you may be authentic witnesses of holiness and live the high measure of Christian life in order to be a sign of contradiction in today’s world.
We are close to you with our prayer and affection.
Caterina and the General Counsel