Thursday, 24 April 2008
Wednesday, 23 April 2008
I am going forward through life amidst rainbows and storms, but with my head held high with pride, for I am a royal child. I feel that the blood of Jesus is circulating in my veins, and I have put my trust in the great mercy of the Lord. (992)
Jesus is commanding me to make a novena before the Feast of Mercy, and today I am to begin it for the conversion of the whole world and for the recognition of the Divine Mercy... "so that every soul will praise My goodness. I desire trust from My creatures. Encourage souls to place great trust in My fathomless mercy. Let the weak, sinful soul have no fear to approach Me, for even if it had more sins than there are grains of sand in the world, all would be drowned in the unmeasurable depths of My mercy. (1059)
My Jesus, support me when difficult and stormy days come, days of testing, days of ordeal, when suffering and fatigue begin to oppress my body and my soul. Sustain me, Jesus, and give me strength to bear suffering. Set a guard upon my lips that they may address no word of complaint to creatures. Your most merciful Heart is all my hope. I have nothing for my defense but only Your mercy; in it lies all my trust. (1065)
Monday, 21 April 2008
A video about Christian Solidarity International's work in Sudan where they redeem people from slavery and help them return to home & family, with the song "Our Father" by Peter Mason see http://www.itrustjesus.com/ for music and http://www.mirmedjugorje.org/ for info on slave redemption and how you can help.
Friday, 18 April 2008
“Recently Fr Garry contacted me to share an idea. The People of Masserti, he said, are growing rice, in fact they could grow more than they need. But they can’t afford to transport it to a rice mill for processing. If they had their own mill, he said they could feed themselves and we could buy the excess for other projects.
Two hours later the telephone rang and a gentleman said he and his wife would like to help the people of Masserti and he offered a specific donation.
The donation was the exact amount that would be needed for the mill that Fr Garry had spoken of. The names of the donors were …… Mr & Mrs Rice !
Monday, 14 April 2008
The date of it's origin is somewhat obscure, but despite the vicissitudes of life around it, the holy atmosphere of this little shrine has remained, and even to the present day there are pilgrimages to it, just as there used to be in generations past. 'The history of Ladyewell's origin is a very romantic one.
Centuries ago when the sons of Ireland, imbued with the fever of unrest, were roaming throughout the distant parts of the world, the circumstances arose which led to the founding of this shrine.
It was a day in autumn, when the elements were battling and causing a great destruction, a heavily laden galley was making very poor progress northward against a tempestuous Irish sea. The owner of the galley was Fergus Maguire, a younger son of a Chief of Fermanagh who, rich with the efforts of his trading gathered in many remote parts, was returning to his native land.
Day and night he and his crew had laboured without making much headway. So discouraged did his crew become that, throwing down their oars, they resigned themselves to their death, which indeed they thought was inevitable. Fergus, on the other hand, had no such ideas of resignation, and continued to man the helm until with one mighty surge the sea rested it from his grasp.
Then it was that this brave man felt in his extremity the necessity for prayer, and, falling down upon his knees, he besought Almighty God to come to his assistance, vowing that in the event of his deliverance he would perform some pious action. The storm did not abate, but the ship rode it safely, and finally reached the safety of a sheltered estuary. Tired after the strenuous battle, Fergus retired to rest. While he slept he heard a heavenly voice crying "Go to Fernyhalgh and there where thou shalt find a crabtree having coreless fruit hanging over a shrine, build me a chapel".
When he awoke, the Irishman began his inquiries among the inhabitants of the then little port of Liverpool, concerning the place called Fernyhalgh. Of all he asked, no one could tell him anything about it, or where it was situated. Leaving his galley in the hands of his foster father he set out to find Fernyhalgh. Far and wide he travelled into many strange places, and amongst many strange people.
The manner of his reception varied greatly! Some, on hearing his enquiry, would openly scoff at him. It was twilight of a November day that Fergus, being very weary from his travels, drew rein before the gate of a small house situated on an incline with many outhouses about it. The lady of the house stood on the gateway, and her demeanour suggested that she was impatiently awaiting for someone's return. Soon he learned that it was the good lady's maid who had taken the cows to the pastures and was very late in returning. Fergus asked if he could be of assistance to her, but she declined his offer, so leaving her to her vigil he entered the house to rest.
Soon he was aroused by the sound of voices, and heard the matron scolding her maid for not returning home sooner. "Nay mistress" said the girl in reply. "It is not my fault. The Dun cow, who is never quiet at her feeding, had strayed further than usual. I found her at Fernyhalgh". Here Fergus interposed, and on ascertaining that there was such a place as Fernyhalgh, was told by the mistress that it was three miles from where they were. The maid, proof that she had been there, displayed a gnarled and twisted branch, which, she said, she had broken off the apple tree near the spring. The branch was nearly leafless, but had a few crab apples adhering to it and on examining the fruits, Fergus discovered that they were coreless, just as he had been told in the vision.
The next day Fergus and the maid, Hilda, set out for Fernyhalgh, the place for which he had sought for so long. They crossed the common which lay between the village of Preston and the boundaries of the farm.She told Fergus of her own home which was on the edge of the hollow in which the well lay how on the death of her parents, the neighbours had been so kind to her. She told him of Oswald, their neighbours' son, of whom, he divined, she was very fond. When at last they reached the well, and the traveller assured himself that it really was the right place, he said a prayer of thanksgiving.
After the founder had made his thanksgiving, little Hilda offered up her prayer, the first of countless which were to follow in the centuries to come from devoted pilgrims who visited the Holy Shrine. It was while Fergus was looking round the site of the future church, that he, picking up a large stone, observed a tracery upon it in the shape of Mother and Child.
At once he realised that Our Lady had been honoured here before, and that it was her wish to have this place again for herself. The Maguire clan in Fermanagh had their own breed of cow called the Dun Cow. It was a cream coloured beast. Was it a coincidence that the cow in the story was a Dun Cow?
Thursday, 10 April 2008
Wednesday, 9 April 2008
Eighty percent of the town of Meulaboh in Aceh, Indonesia, was destroyed by the Tsunami waves and a similar percentage of the people died. This was one of the towns hit hardest but most of the Christian minority survived.
There were only about 400 Christians in Meulaboh. Naturally they wanted to celebrate Christmas, but they were not allowed to do so by the muslims of Meulaboh. In order to celebrate Christmas, they had to leave the town and went up into the hills inland.
Having moved away from their homes, they made it a day long celebration and stayed overnight on the hill. They were still there the next morning when the Tsunami struck killing thousands in the town below. The 400 Christians on the hill were all spared from the destruction that befell their muslim neighbours.
Had the Christians insisted on their rights to celebrate Christmas in the town they would have all died too.But because instead of being confrontational and going up into the hills to celebrate in peace, they were saved and can now testify to God’s marvellous protection. Their humility was key to them being saved.
A parish in Sri Lanka had a very similar escape. Instead of having Mass in their 3 parish churches that morning, they had an outdoor Mass at a grotto up on a hillside. But even then they should have been back down when the Tsunami struck, but that day the Priest went ‘on and on’ in his sermon. As a result only those who left before the end of Mass were caught up in the Tsunami. The 3 churches below in the town were completely destroyed.