Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Religious Congregation of Mary Immaculate Queen

All Religious Orders and Congregations in the Catholic Church began as small communities of devout men and women united by simple guidelines. Over a period of time, each Order adopted a Rule and Constitutions which were approved by the Church. The Congregation of Mary Immaculate Queen, or CMRI (Congregatio Mariae Reginae Immaculatae), has followed the same steps.

This Congregation began in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, in 1967, as an association of lay Brothers and Sisters devoted to spreading the message of Our Lady of Fatima. The Congregation held its first General Chapter in July, 1986, at Mount St. Michael in Spokane, Washington. During this meeting, CMRI established its Rule and Constitutions. In the same year, the Rule was approved by Bishop Robert McKenna, O.P., whose episcopal lineage can be traced back to Archbishop Pierre Martin Ngo-dinh-Thuc. (Archbishop Thuc received extraordinary patriarchal powers from Pope Pius XI on March 15, 1938. By means of these faculties, he could legitimately consecrate bishops without the usual mandate from Rome. These faculties were renewed on December 8, 1939, by Pope Pius XII and were never rescinded.)

As the Congregation grew, it was called upon to minister to the spiritual needs of many Catholics who would not accept the Modernism of Vatican II. With the death of Pope Pius XII, and with the convocation of the Second Vatican Council, an unprecedented situation befell the Church, which attacked her very doctrines and worship. In order to provide for the preservation of the Catholic Faith and the traditional Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and Sacraments, the Priests, Brothers and Sisters of the Religious Congregation of Mary Immaculate Queen profess and adhere to the Catholic Faith as it had been consistently taught throughout the centuries since the time of Christ. CMRI upholds the 1917 Code of Canon Law and the principle of epikeia which reflects the mind of the Church that “the salvation of souls is the supreme law.”

The current Superior General of CMRI is Bishop Mark A. Pivarunas. The Mother General of the Marian Sisters is Reverend Mother Mary Agnes. The Religious of the Congregation of Mary Immaculate Queen serve over 40 churches and chapels in the United States, Canada and New Zealand. They also operate a seminary in Omaha, Nebraska, while the Sisters’ motherhouse is located in Spokane, Washington. CMRI members foster true devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and strive to promote Our Lady’s requests at Fatima to pray the Rosary, wear the scapular, and to practice reparation and amendment of life.


Sunday, 19 June 2011

Saturday, 18 June 2011

Hermits of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel..

Between the years of 1206 and 1214, there existed a group of hermits living in Mt. Carmel in Palestine that had formed themselves into a group under the leadership of a man named Brocard.

This group proceeded to ask Albert, the Patriarch of Jerusalem, to provide them with a "formula vitae" or rule of life which became the Carmelite rule.  Because of the association of Mt. Carmel with the Prophet Elijah, these first Carmelite hermits took him as their "Dux et Pater", or leader and father. They also had a particular devotion to Our Lady, building an oratory dedicated to her, and by doing so pledged themselves to her service and placed their community under her patronage and protection. Hence they later became known as "the Brothers of St Mary of Mount Carmel."

Hermits, belonging to ancient Orders or New Institutes, or being directly dependent on the Bishop, bear witness to the passing nature of the present age by the inward and outward separation, from the world. By fasting and Penance, they show that man does not live by bread alone but by the work of God. Such a life "In the Desert" is an invitation to their contemporaries and to the ecclesial community itself, never to lose sight of the supreme vocation, which is to be always with the Lord.

The Hermits of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel are a community of men called to a life of silence, solitude, prayer, and penance for the good of the Church and the salvation of the world. The hermits live in a Laura, a colony of Hermits living in separate dwellings around a central chapel, following the original Carmelite rule. 

The vocation of the Carmelite Hermit is the contemplative vocation, and the foundations of his life are the Eucharist, Sacred Scripture and devotion to Our Blessed Lady under the title of Our Lady of Mount Carmel . For the hermit the cell is the place of encounter with God. 

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Venerable Matthew Talbot - Triumph over Addiction

Matthew Talbot was born on May 2, 1856, the second of 12 siblings, in Dublin, Ireland. He had three sisters and nine brothers, three of whom died young. His father Charles was a dockworker and his mother, Elizabeth, was a housewife. When Matthew was about 12 years old, he started to drink alcohol. His father was a known alcoholic as well as all his brothers. The eldest brother, John, was the exception. Charles tried to dissuade Matthew with severe punishments but without success.

Matthew worked as a messenger boy when he was twelve and then transferred to another messenger job at the same place his father worked. After working there for three years, he became a bricklayer's laborer. He was a hodman, which meant he fetched mortar and bricks for the bricklayers. He was considered "the best hodman in Dublin.

As he grew into an adult, he continued to drink excessively, He continued to work but spent all his wages on heavy drinking. When he got drunk, he became very hot-tempered, got into fights, and swore. He became so desperate for more drinks that he would buy drinks on credit, sell his boots or possessions, or steal people's possession so he could exchange it for more drinks. He refused to listen to his mother's plea to stop drinking. He eventually lost his own self-respect. One day when he was broke, he loitered around a street corner waiting for his "friends", who were leaving work after they were paid their wages. He had hoped that they would invite him for a drink but they ignored him. Dejected, he went home and publicly resolved to his mother, "I'm going to take the pledge." His mother smiled and responded, "Go, in God's name, but don't take it unless you are going to keep it." As Matthew was leaving, she continued, "May God give you strength to keep it."

Matthew went straight to confession at Clonliffe College and took a pledge not to drink for three months. The next day he went back to Church and received communion for the first time in years. From that moment on, in 1884 when he was 28 years old, he became a new man. After the he successfully fulfilled his pledge for three months, he made a life long pledge. He even made a pledge to give up his pipe and tobacco. He used to use about seven ounces of tobacco a week. He said to the late Sean T. O'Ceallaigh, former President of Ireland, that it cost him more to give up tobacco that to give up alcohol.

The new converted Matthew never swore. He was good humored and amicable to everyone. He continued to work as a hodman and then as a laborer for timber merchants. He used his wages to pay back all his debts. He lived modestly and his home was very spartan. He developed into a very pious individual who prayed every chance he got. He attended Mass every morning and made devotions like the Stations of the Cross or devotions the Blessed mother in the evenings. He fasted, performed acts of mortification, and financially supported many religious organizations. He read biographies of St. Teresa of Avila, St. Therese of Lisieux, and St. Catherine of Sienna. He later joined the Third Order of St. Francis on October 18, 1891 even though a young pious girl proposed to marry him. Physically, he suffered from kidney and heart ailments. During the two times he was hospitalized, he spent much time in Eucharistic adoration in the hospital chapel. Eventually, Matthew died on June 7, 1925 while walking to Mass. He was 69 years old. Here is a wonderful quote from Matthew to remember:

"Three things I cannot escape: the eye of God, the voice of conscience, the stroke of death. In company, guard your tongue. In your family, guard your temper. When alone guard your thoughts."

Article From

Friday, 10 June 2011

Marthe Robin ...Victim Soul

[The following article from the Voice of Padre Pio speaks of another soul, who like Padre Pio, offered herself to God on behalf of others.]

She neither ate, drank nor slept, but lived for seven decades and carried on a busy apostolate.
Padre Pio passed to his heavenly reward in September 1968.

At that moment a sister soul, a laywoman who also suffered the stigmata and the Passion of Christ was still living her mission. She lived in the Galaure Valley in the southern half of France. It would seem that she and the Padre had much in common.

Last year, just after my biography, The Pierced Priest was published, I was interviewed on a French radio station. They were fascinated to hear more about Padre Pio and I realised that perhaps he is not quite as well known there as in some places because France had its own 'Padre Pio'. She was Marthe Robin. The interviewer was surprised that Marthe, in turn, is very little known so far in English-speaking countries.
In researching Padre's life, I understood that he was in some way part of that "Legion of Little Souls" that St Therese of Lisieux so confidently prophesied would follow her and continue her 'Little Way.' As well as the 'explosion' of apparitions with which the Lord seemed to be gracing this century, I understood that in his mercy He was also inspiring chosen souls to become 'victims' with Him to appeal to the Divine Mercy of our Father on this apparently Godless age.

Padre Pio was born in 1887. We know that as a student he read the newly-published 'autobiography' of St Therese. (He was also much influenced by another devotee of Therese, that incomparable little flower herself, St Gemma Galgani.)

Therese died in 1897. I think she somehow in her last months experienced that near-despair which would be the lot of so many of our contemporaries in the twentieth century. Marthe Robin was born in 1902.

Her only food was the Holy Eucharist

From the age of 28 she was completely paralysed and bedridden. At first she still had the power to move thumb and forefinger of one hand whereby she could still tell her beads. Eventually this, too, was lost to her and she was completely immobile apart from her head which she could move slightly. Since the previous year, at the age of 25, she could not eat anything at all. And from the age of 26 and her total paralysis she couldn't even take a sip of water. When doctors tried to force some water down her throat, it merely came down her nostrils.

For the next 53 years Marthe's only food was the Holy Eucharist. Once a week her spiritual father brought her the Sacred Host. On more than one occasion both he and other visiting priests, saw the Host apparently leap from their hands and fly directly to her mouth. Even a bishop testified that he saw it apparently dissolve once it passed her lips.

Her Holy Communion was weekly. Once she had received Jesus she went immediately into ecstasy and then began her weekly re-living of Christ's Passion and crucifixion. The stigmata and the scourging, the crowning with thorns appeared on her body. The whole crucifixion seemed to be re-enacted on this little countrywoman and from the moment of Christ's death on the Cross she too appeared dead. Thus she would remain until 'called back' to life under obedience by her spiritual father on the Sunday. (This would eventually become the Monday and then even the Tuesday following the Friday crucifixion.)

I said that for 53 years Marthe ate not a crumb of food. Neither did she sleep. She was in constant prayer and intercession for the world. On the days when she was not reliving the Passion she would receive a stream of visitors. Like Padre Pio she had the gift of seeing into people's souls and would very simply tell them what they most needed to hear. Also like the Padre she could not abide anyone coming to see her out of mere curiosity or expecting to 'have their fortunes told.'

One famous French philosopher and member of the prestigious Academie Francaise, Jean Guitton, wrote how he was bowled over on meeting this extraordinary little woman on a visit to her family's small farmhouse where she lived in a bed in one small room. As a renowned intellectual, Guitton was fascinated by the fact that she never slept. He concluded that she was a "living brain" which was constantly active. Soon, of course, he realised that she was "more, much more, than that."

She was directed to found a school, first for girls and then one for boys, in her native village. All this she directed and led to the smallest detail from her bed in her darkened little room! But more was to follow. She was then told to found a community which would welcome retreatants and which would be a home of "light, charity and love." It became known as the 'Foyer de Charite' and there are now some 70 houses and communities throughout the world.

Our Lady gave very specific instructions about what was to happen in these houses. Each one was to be led by a priest, 'the Father', and the retreats were to be in complete silence apart from the prayers and the preaching of the Father which would lead to a complete renewal in the Faith of the participants. And they were to be five days long. Three days was "not enough to change a soul." The retreats were, and are, based very much on the teaching of that great Marian apostle, St. Louis de Montfort. Indeed, one time after an ecstasy a copy of his Treatise on True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin was found on Marthe's bed. No one knew where it had come from. Marthe told them our Lady left it!

Like Padre Pio and others who live a high degree of union with Our Blessed Lord, Marthe also had to suffer assaults from the Devil. As in a similar incident with Padre Pio, our Lady assisted Marthe and one time when she was thrown onto the floor, herself placed a cushion under Marthe's head.

Like Padre and other truly holy souls, Marthe was also very discreet about her supernatural experiences. But she did often speak to close friends about her special relationship with St Therese of Lisieux. On more than one occasion she confirmed that St Therese had appeared to her three times. She said that Therese had told her that her work, like that of Therese, would be much greater after her death than while she was alive in her Carmel of Lisieux. And Therese said that Marthe would have a great mission to continue in her 'Little Way.'

"For your beloved souls, the priests"
An offering made by Marthe in 1939 (renewing her Act of Abandonment of 1925) echoes so closely that made by Padre Pio. She said, "Lord, I offer myself, I give myself again to You for all the souls in the world, for the sanctity of your beloved souls the priests, especially for those whose sins I carry in my heart.
"That through me, Lord, by my prayer, by my love, by my sufferings, by my immolation, by any exterior actions I may have, that by my whole life their apostolate will be more effective, more fruitful, more holy, more divine."

Another paragraph of that offering would surely have struck a chord with Padre Pio, who offered the Mass with such love, devotion and tenderness that he would often weep. Marthe prayed for her beloved priests, "May their Mass be less of a sumptuous exterior ceremony during which they are busy, distracted, distant, and more an act of profound tenderness."

And like Padre Pio, Marthe seemed to be able to be - or at least see what was happening - elsewhere. She could tell her spiritual father, exactly what had happened that day during the retreat in the Foyer in the village. She could tell him which parts of the talks he gave were good and where he might have been a bit distracted for example. And this ability and concern for the well-being of the retreatants reached down to the smallest detail. She would point out clearly to the members of the community if there had been any lack in charity or if the silence had been broken. She would say if the retreatants needed more heating or if something was not good enough with the meals.

When Marthe died aged 79, after suffering the Passion and Crucifixion a last time in February 1981, over 250 priests and several bishops concelebrated her Requiem. Her work of the Foyers de Charite continues and grows.
Thank God who in his infinite Mercy has given us such souls as our beloved Padre Pio, St Gemma Galgani, Marthe Robin and who knows how many hidden 'victims' to intercede with Him to the Father for mercy in these times we live in.

The very existence of a Padre Pio, a Marthe Robin, surely proves once again the "loving mercy of the Heart of our God." He cannot change. He sent his only Son to die for us. The Holy Spirit, our Advocate, inspires certain chosen souls to identify in a special way in the redemptive work of our Saviour. They are led and helped particularly by she who stood by the Cross, Our Blessed Mother of Mercy.

What a mighty God who in this century of atheism, rejection of his ways, mass murder, and all sorts of blasphemy and sacrilege should respond with grace upon grace. May we respond, with our brothers and sisters those victim souls, before it is too late. May St Therese Padre Pio, Marthe Robin intercede for us and inspire us

[The above article was from the Voice of Padre Pio speaks of another soul, who like Padre Pio, offered herself to God on behalf of others.]

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Servant of God Frank Duff...Founder of the Legion of Mary

Servant of God Frank Duff (June 7, 1889 - November 7, 1980) was a native of Dublin, Ireland, born as the eldest child of a wealthy family. He is best known for bringing attention to the role of the laity during the Second Vatican Council of the Roman Catholic Church, and for founding the Legion of Mary.

Early life

Francis Michael Duff was born in Dublin, Ireland, on June 7, 1889. He attended Blackrock College, then joined the Roman Catholic organization for laity known as the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in 1913 and was greatly influenced by the spirit of the Society. He entered the Civil Service at the age of 18 and had a distinguished career. His free time he at first dedicated to sporting activities, but at the age of 24 he joined the Society of St. Vincent de Paul where he was led to a deeper commitment to his Catholic faith and at the same time he acquired a great sensitivity to the needs of the poor and underprivileged. Along with a group of Catholic women and Fr. Michael Toher, a priest of the Dublin Archdiocese, he formed the first branch of what was to become the first praesidium of the Legion of Mary on September 7, 1921.

From that date until his death, November 7, 1980, he guided the world-wide extension of the Legion with heroic dedication. He attended the Second Vatican Council as a lay observer. He died on the evening of November 7, 1980 aged 91 years. His Cause for Beatification was introduced by His Eminence Desmond Cardinal Connell, the then Archbishop of Dublin, in June 1996.

In 1916, aged 27, Duff published his first pamphlet entitled "Can we be Saints?" In it he expressed the conviction that all without exception are called to be saints, and that through Christian faith all persons have available the means necessary to attain such sainthood.

In 1917 he came to know the Treatise of St. Louis de Montfort on the True Devotion to Mary, a work brought to his attention the importance of Mary in the life of the laity. feast June 7

The Legion of Mary
On September 7, 1921 Frank Duff founded the Legion of Mary. This is a lay apostolic organisation at the service of the Roman Catholic Church, under ecclesiastical guidance. Its twofold purpose is the spiritual development of its members and advancing the reign of Christ through Mary.
The Legion operates throughout the world. Today between active and auxiliary (praying) members there are in excess of 10 million members worldwide.

Later life

In 1965 Pope Paul VI invited Frank Duff to attend the Second Vatican Council as a Lay Observer, an honour by which the Pope recognised and affirmed his enormous work for the lay apostolate. Frank Duff would question the lack of apostolic zeal of many Catholics, leading him to wonder whether they had the Catholic faith to begin with.

In his book about Frank Duff, Fr Robert Bradshaw said that Frank Duff had a great devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus but he had difficulty at first becoming a member of the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association because it meant wearing the badge which has a picture in the center of the Sacred Heart. Frank did not like wearing his religion in public. But feeling that he was denying Our Lord he became a member and went even further by having a special Pioneer badge made for himself which would make the picture of the Sacred Heart more visible.

Later Frank helped Joe Gabbett set up the Catholic Breakfast center for the poor in Whitefriars Street because Protestant Proselytizing Centers were obliging the poor to listen to a Protestant service in order to obtain a Breakfast. Frank was very impressed by the big picture of the Sacred Heart that Joe Gabbett had overseeing their breakfast center. Frank made promotion of devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus a part of the Legion Apostolate. Frank took to heart the words of Our Lord to Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque "My Heart is so inflamed with Love for men that it is no longer able to keep within itself the flames of its burning Love. It must make itself known unto men in order to enrich them with the treasures it contains" and on another occasion Jesus told her "Behold this Heart which has loved men so much and yet is so little loved in return". And later when Frank joined the Secular Franciscan Order he probably really absorbed Saint Francis weeping lament about Jesus when he said "Love is not loved".

Frank would spend his life trying to make 'Love loved' by as many people as possible and to make them realise that Love loved them. To this end he would try to have Legionaries get the picture of the Sacred Heart enthroned in the homes they visited. He also encouraged Legionaries to use and explain the Miraculous Medal to their contacts which also has a picture of the Sacred heart on the back. Frank probably understood Jesus' words when He said "I have come to set fire to the earth and how I wish it was burning already" (Lk 12:49) to mean that Jesus wanted everyone to know about the fire burning in His Sacred Heart for mankind so that all mankind would be burning with love for God. It is no coincidence that Frank Duff was born and died on the First Friday of the month. He had a mission to fulfill for the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Frank had great faith in the Mercy and love of Jesus for mankind, he wrote the following prayer:
"O Lord, all hearts are in Your Hand You can bend as it pleases You the most obdurate and soften the most hardened. Do that honour this night through the Blood, merits, wounds, names and inflamed Hearts of Your Beloved Son and His Most Holy Mother by granting the conversion of the whole world. Nothing less My God, Nothing less because of Mary Thy Mother and because of Thy might and Thy Mercy"

On November 7, 1980 Frank Duff died and was buried in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin.

In July 1996 the Cause of his canonisation was introduced by the Archbishop of Dublin, Desmond Connell.

From Wikipedia..

Monday, 6 June 2011

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Venerable Concepción Cabrera de Armida

The Venerable Concepción Cabrera de Armida (born on December 8, 1862 in San Luis Potosí, Mexico and died on March 3, 1937 in Mexico City) was a Mexican Roman Catholic mystic and writer.
She is also referred to as María Concepción Cabrera Arias de Armida, sometimes as Conchita Cabrera de Armida or Conchita Cabrera Arias de Armida, and often simply as Conchita.


Her Life

She was born to Octaviano Cabrera Lacaveux and Clara Arias Rivera who had a respectable, but not lavish family life. She had a simple, happy and at times playful childhood. Although she recalled to have often disobeyed her parents as a child, she showed a special love for the Holy Eucharist from an early age.
In 1884 she married Francisco Armida and had nine children between 1885 and 1899. In 1901, when she was 39 years old, her husband died and she had to care for her children, the youngest of whom was two years old. Her life as a widow was not made any easier by the fact that the Mexican Civil War raged from 1910 to 1921 and took the lives of 900,000 of Mexico's population of 15 million. Yet her writings reflect an amazing tranquility, amid the chaos that surrounded her.

As a mystic, she reported that she heard God telling her: "Ask me for a long suffering life and to write a lot... That's your mission on earth". She never claimed direct visions of Jesus and Mary but spoke of Jesus through her prayers and meditations.

Her spiritual life started before the death of her husband. In 1894 she took "spiritual nupitals" and in 1896 wrote in her diary: "In truth, after I touched God and had an imperfect notion of His Being, I wanted to prostrate myself, my forehead and my heart, in the dust and never get up again." During her life her writings were examined by the Catholic Church in Mexico and even during her pilgrimage to Rome in 1913 where she had an audience with Pope Pius X. In all cases, Church authorities looked favorably on her writings.

Her writings were widely distributed and inspired the establishment of the five apostolates of the 'Works of the Cross' in Mexico: 'Apostolate of the Cross' founded in 1895, 'Congregation of Sisters of the Cross of the Sacred Heart of Jesus' founded in 1897, 'Covenant of Love with the Heart of Jesus' founded in 1909, 'The Priestly Fraternity' founded in 1912, and 'The Congregation of Missionaries of the Holy Spirit' founded in 1914. These apostolates continue today.

Conchita died on March 3, 1937, at the age of 75 and is buried at the Church of San José del Altillo in Mexico City. She had lived a multi-faceted life, being a mother, a widow, a mystic and a writer. Of herself she wrote:
"I carry within me three lives, all very strong: family life with its multiple sorrows of a thousand kinds, that is, the life of a mother; the life of the Works of the Cross with all its sorrows and weight, which at times crushes me until I have no strength left; and the life of the spirit or interior life, which is the heaviest of all, with its highs and lows, its tempests and struggles, its light and darkness. Blessed be God for everything!"
As a lay woman, she often aimed to show her readers how to love the Church. She wrote: "To love the Church is not to criticize her, not to destroy her, not to try to change her essential structures, not to reduce her to humanism, horizontalism and to the simple service of a human liberation. To love the Church is to cooperate with the work of Redemption by the Cross and in this way obtain the grace of the Holy Spirit come to renew the face of this poor earth, conducting it to its consummation in the design of the Father's immense love."

Her book I Am: Eucharistic Meditations on the Gospel, was the results of meditations during Eucharistic adoration. It aims to clarify the words with which Jesus defines Who He is in a variety of statements beginning with the words: "I am".

In Seasons of the Soul she viewed the maturation of spiritual life as an ongoing process through the various seasons until the soul has fulfilled its purpose on earth. It discusses how the Holy Spirit is at work gradually transforming the soul through its seasons in the image and likeness of Jesus.

The book A Mother's Letters reflects the fact that she was not a cloistered mystic but a busy mother with nine children and a widow during a turbulent time in Mexico's political history. The letters provide a glimpse of her warm, human side as she communicates with her family.

Her other books include: To My Priests, Holy Hours, Before the Altar, You Belong to the Church and Irresistibly Drawn to the Eucharist.

Her canonization process was started in 1959 by the Archbishop of Mexico City, at which time about 200 volumes of her writings were submitted to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. Pope John Paul II declared her venerable on December 20, 1999 and she is currently in the process of beatification.

Article from Wikipedia..

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Confraternity of Catholic Priests Australia...

The Australian Confraternity of Catholic Clergy is a private, voluntary and fraternal association of Catholic clerics of the Dioceses of Australia constituted in 1987 under statutes in conforming with the 1983 Code of Canon Law under Canon 278 §1:

Their fraternity helps members to build up one another in the grace of their priestly vocation; it increases the wider flourishing of authentic living and exercise of vocations among bishops, priests and deacons; and it attracts younger men to consider a vocation to the sacred ministry of the Church.

Secular clergy have the right of association with others for the achievement of purposes befitting the clerical state.


The aims of the ACCC are to:
  • give glory and honour to the Most Blessed Trinity;
  • assist the eternal salvation and holiness of members;
  • foster unity among Catholic priests and deacons with the bishops in loyalty to the Supreme Magisterium;
  • encourage faithfulness to priestly life and ministry;
  • assist bishops, priests, and deacons in the fulfilment of their ministry of teaching, sanctifying, and governing.

All Australian bishops, priests and deacons are invited to membership. Priest or deacon associate membership is open to priests and deacons who are members of religious institutes or secular institutes. Lay faithful who wish to support the clerical association in its objectives are invited to lay associate membership.


Friday, 3 June 2011

Hearts Home and the Fraternity of Molokai

France-based Heart’s Home was founded by Priest Father Thierry de Roucy in 1990. Five years later, he started the Fraternity of Molokai, a priestly branch of the group, now with about 30 priests and seminarians. The name, he said, came to him in an inspiration while he was in Senegal. He chose St. Damien as a patron because of “his desire to exactly the same life of the lepers of his parish.” But instead of naming the group after Damien, Father de Roucy named it after the island of Molokai, in homage to the people.

“It’s the people that make us what we are,” explained Father Gonzague Leroux, a member of the fraternity. Ten priests from the group came to Molokai.

“It was special to see where he became a saint,” said another member, Deacon Edward De Grivel, “and have mass in the first chapel he built.”

The Heart’s Home group stayed at Pu`u O Hoku Ranch during their week-long stay on the island, where they learned about St. Damien’s life and work on Molokai, held masses and enjoyed the tranquil landscapes. They also visited Kalaupapa during their trip, described by Father Leroux as a “theological vacation.” 

“The aloha spirit is so beautiful,” he said.  “We carry the same spirit all around the world.”

In a special mass held at Our Lady of Seven Sorrows, three members became “lay-consecrated” by taking the same life-long vows of poverty, obedience and chastity taken by priests and nuns, but without becoming ordained or wearing a habit. While many people take their vows surrounded by family and friends, these three young people chose their consecration to take place on Molokai.

“When they proposed the Molokai trip, I thought, ‘it’s a gift,’” said Alexander Descours, one of the three newly lay-consecrated. “It’s unbelievable [to take vows in St. Damien’s home].”

Heart’s Home, inspired by St. Damien’s work and dedicated to compassion for those in need, has 45 centers in 22 countries around the world.

Sylvie Muller is a lay-consecrated member who made the journey to Molokai. Muller’s current mission is in Brooklyn, New York. She began with Heart’s Home, as many do, as a volunteer, first sent to serve in Argentina over 10 years ago. She said though her work with Brooklyn’s elderly, under-privileged and home-bound is often difficult, she is inspired by Saint Damien’s closeness to the people he served and how much he loved them.

“You don’t know how I was longing to be closer to Damien and follow in his footsteps,” said. St. Damien “gives meaning to what I do and what I am.”

Article from:

Their website:

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Catherine de Hueck Doherty....Madonna House Apostolate

She was born Ekaterina (Catherine) Fyodorovna Kolyschkine (Екатерина Фёдоровна Колышкина) in Nizhny Novgorod, Russian Empire. Her parents, Fyodor and Emma Kolyschkine, belonged to the minor nobility and were devout members of the Russian Orthodox Church who had their child baptized in St. Petersburg on September 15, 1896. She was not baptized on the same day that she was born because her mother was worried she might get a disease since she was born on a train.

Schooled abroad because of her father's job, Catherine and her family returned to St. Petersburg in 1910, where she was enrolled in the prestigious Princess Obolensky Academy. In 1912, aged 15, she made what turned out to be a disastrous marriage with her first cousin, Boris de Hueck (1889–1947).

At the outbreak of World War I, Catherine de Hueck became a Red Cross nurse at the front, experiencing the horrors of battle firsthand. On her return to St. Petersburg, she and Boris barely escaped the turmoil of the Russian Revolution with their lives, nearly starving to death as refugees in Finland. Together they made their way to England, where Catherine was received into communion with the Roman Catholic Church on November 27, 1919, becoming a Russian Greek-Catholic.

Immigrating to Canada with Boris, Catherine gave birth to their only child, George, in Toronto in 1921. Soon she and Boris became more and more painfully estranged from one another, as he pursued extramarital affairs. To make ends meet, Catherine took various jobs and eventually became a lecturer, travelling a circuit that took her across North America.


Friendship House

Prosperous now, but deeply dissatisfied with a life of material comfort, her marriage in ruins, Catherine began to feel the promptings of a deeper call through a passage that leaped to her eyes every time she opened the Bible: "Arise — go... sell all you possess... take up your cross and follow Me." Consulting with various priests and the bishop of the diocese, she began her lay apostolate among the poor in Toronto in the early 1930s, calling it Friendship House.

Because her interracial approach was so different from what was being done at the time, she encountered much persecution and resistance, and Friendship House was forced to close in 1936. Catherine then went to Europe and spent a year investigating Catholic Action. On her return, she was given the chance to revive Friendship House in New York City among the poor in Harlem. In time, more than a dozen Friendship Houses would be founded in North America.

In 1943, having received an annulment of her first marriage, as she had married her cousin, which is forbidden in the Church, she married Eddie Doherty, one of America's foremost reporters, who had fallen in love with her while writing a story about her apostolate.


Madonna House

Catherine Doherty died on December 14, 1985 in Combermere at the age of 89. Since then, the cause for Catherine's canonization as a saint has been officially opened in the Catholic Church.

Quote from Catherine:  "The duty of the moment is what you should be doing at any given time, in whatever place God has put you. You may not have Christ in a homeless person at your door, but you may have a little child. If you have a child, your duty of the moment may be to change a dirty diaper. So you do it. But you don't just change that diaper, you change it to the best of your ability, with great love for both God and that child.... There are all kinds of good Catholic things you can do, but whatever they are, you have to realize that there is always the duty of the moment to be done. And it must be done, because the duty of the moment is the duty of God."


Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Traditional Benedictine Monastic Order......

The Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles is a traditional monastic community of women who desire to imitate the Blessed Virgin Mary in the giving of herself to God to fulfill His Will, especially in her role of assistance by prayer and work to the Apostles, first priests of the Catholic Church.

Society in these latter days is in obvious dire need of re-evangelization and sanctification through the ministry in particular of the sacred priesthood of the Roman Catholic Church. Although times have changed, the divine mission committed to the first Apostles, as well as the needs of those to whom they were sent, have not. It is their ideal to imitate Our Lady's retirement from the world in quiet seclusion, as well as her apostolic charity. Consecrated entirely to her and filled with her spirit, which is none other than the Holy Spirit of God, they aspire to be, to the successors of the Apostles in our times, what she was to them in the beginning: behind-the-scenes encouragement, assistance and support.

Their charism, therefore, is to be united at the foot of the Cross with Our Lady who receives the mercy and grace, that blood and water which Our Lord's Heart cannot contain, for His priests in the person of St. John. They are simply vessels in her hands; she fills them, and only to pour them out again. This explains their joy! With the sacred contents, she nourishes and strengthens the priest in his spiritual life, washes him from the contagion of the world, and quenches his thirst after preaching the Word. Being sent to bring God's mercy and His life to the nations, they are a "light shining in the darkness".