Weekly News Flash from the Universal Living Rosary Association of Saint Philomena, Week of Sunday June 2, 2013

GLORY BE TO Jesus CHRIST!Beloved Members and Benefactors of the Living Rosary,

During this momentous Season of Pentecost, the Church is born of the Virgin Mary. We look up to the glorious Martyrs, Confessors and Virgins who, on the battlefield of this world, held in their heart this prayer, “Lord, what wilt Thou have me do?” The Holy Spirit mercifully brings to our soul His Gift of Fortitude. With His help, we will be able to triumph over all timidity, indecision and cowardice. Every Christian life is to be the credible career of a Soldier of Christ Jesus, not by warring on external enemies but by a campaign against perverse self-love. How hard it is for us to be obedient, to serve and to be unnoticed! Everything in the world assures us that we “deserve” the best: a life of ease, the luxury of rich surroundings, gourmet foods and stylish attire, and that our opinion is important and should hold sway with those around us. Humiliation and contradiction wound us to the very core. The Pentecostal tongues of fire came to rest upon the cowardly disciples and apostles, and made them fearless soldiers in the Army of Christ that they might conquer the world for their Master.

Of its very nature, fire tends to change everything it touches into itself; it never says “Enough!” On Pentecost Sunday, the Holy Ghost came personally as a bright burning Flame of the Infinite Love between the Father and the Son, and He kindled in them an ardor which made them relish every truth revealed and every law promulgated by their Master. Mary was there as chosen Spouse of the Holy Ghost. She was there in the upper room not merely as a mark of honor but in Her rightful place in virtue of Her unique office in the Church, as Spouse and Mother, Co-operatrix for the regeneration and rebirth of souls into the life of grace and divine son-ship.

Let us long for union with Our Lady, Spouse of the Holy Ghost, begging from Her the fullness of the Gifts of the Holy Ghost, the sweetness of His Fruits and the Fire of His Love. We need to ask Her for the special gift of love and service of our neighbor, no matter how troublesome he may be. We pray fervently for all of you at the Sacred Altar and stand deeply in your debt, as during the past two months through your prayers and kindness, we have enrolled over 3,000 new members in the Living Rosary here in Ukraine!

I will remember you and your family at the Holy Altar daily. I pray that you will have the courage, conviction and desire to allow Christ and His Holy Mother to have the place of honor and authority in the shrine of your family dwelling.

I impart to all of you, my priestly blessing:

+ In the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Amen.

Byzantine Rite, Greek-Catholic Church, UKRAINE

Dear Apostle of the Immaculate Heart of Mary,

Thank you for your most generous help for the work of the Living Rosary in the world today. By our faithfulness to our DAILY DECADE, something bigger than a mountain or even the Universe is formed. By the perseverance and humility of all those who pray their DECADE each day, poor sinners are drawn to the sanctuary of the Mysteries of Jesus Christ, their conversion is obtained and the light of Faith penetrates all Nations and every soul.

Spiritual reading is the daily bread of our soul: A little good reading, much prayer and meditation, and God will do the rest! We live in a world devoid, in great part, of a Christian spirit, in an atmosphere and culture estranged from God. In former Ages, spiritual reading was not essential for one’s prayer life. People lived in a Christian world and culture which was reflected in its laws, customs, amusements and its very outlook on life. As the de-Christianization of our world continues, the necessity for spiritual reading must be on the increase. We stand in great need of something to bridge the gap between our pagan surroundings and our conversation with Christ – spiritual reading fills this need. Spiritual reading reinforces the habit of spiritual conversation. It strengthens the family as the Domestic Church and it allows the discussion and demonstration of the practical application of the Faith for all age levels.

How will we be able to explain the Faith, defend it, live it and know it without spiritual reading? The primary purpose of the Living Rosary, when established by Ven. Pauline Jaricot, was to educate the faithful in order to give them protection against the lies of those who would seek to destroy the Holy Catholic Faith and to give them a battering ram against the heresies which assail Her in every Age:

Pray the Rosary!
Consecrate yourself to the Immaculate Heart of Mary!

Patti Melvin
Please pray for me

THE LIVING ROSARY UNITES US! THOUGH WE ARE MANY WE BECOME ONE!The work of the Living Rosary made Pauline famous. She was its mother and its queen. She exercised an influence without measure. Through her letters, her circulars and personal interviews, she communicated the superabundance of her spiritual life. She transmitted the fire which consumed her to others. Her influence was immense. The Living Rosary was ablaze! This magnificent work of the “Daily Decade” triggered a true spiritual renewal of society in the 19th Century. The Living Rosary was the very first organization of the Church in France and the countries of Switzerland, Belgium and America, after the devastation of the French Revolution. Repeatedly, it was approved and blessed by Holy Mother the Church. In 1827, it was officially blessed by the Nuncio in France, Cardinal Lambruschini, who became its protector. Pope Gregory XVI in two formal briefs gave the Living Rosary his approval ~ January 27 and February 2, 1832.

THE POWER OF PRAYERGod is Love! He is an all-consuming Fire. What Fire is that? It is the Fire of Divine Love which should be burning within our hearts. It is the flame of the Holy Ghost. Like any fire or flame, it has to be kindled and, then, constantly rekindled because, if a fire is never rekindled, eventually it will burn out and grow cold. The only way we can keep that Fire of Divine Love burning within our hearts is by the power of prayer.

How many Catholics, in the normal course of their day, will never set aside time to pray! God’s power is set loose in prayer as it is in no other way. It is absolutely impossible to have any kind of intimate personal relationship with God unless you have a very strong life of personal prayer. It is impossible for any of us to achieve our spiritual potential as Christian men and women unless we make time to pray.

Our coming into this world was not by accident, not by chance, not by mistake, but by the Will of God. Because of His Infinite Goodness, Love and Generosity, God created us out of nothing! God wanted us to have life. It is His ardent desire that we come to share eternal happiness with Him in His Heavenly Kingdom. If you think that any child’s coming into this world, was a surprise or a mistake, it would have been the first mistake that God ever made. It was not by accident but by the creative will of God that each one of us came into this world, in a specific way, in a specific place, in a certain family and at a particular time, all according to God’s plan. We know that God did not bring us into this world to abandon us. God became man; God took on human flesh and blood in the virginal womb of Our Blessed Mother. God sent His only begotten Son Jesus Christ to die for us on the Cross, to save us and redeem us from sin. He came to give us all the means necessary for our salvation. When we talk about the means of salvation, we are talking especially about the Seven Sacraments. These powerful channels of Grace Our Lord bought and paid for in His own Blood on Calvary.

“I know well the plans I have in mind for you,” says the Lord, “plans for your welfare not for your woe, plans to give you a future full of hope. When you call Me in prayer, I will listen to you. When you look for Me you will find Me. When you seek Me with all your heart, you will find Me with you…” (Jeremiah Ch. 29:11-14)

God has a plan for your life that is going to end in Eternal Glory if only you will cooperate with the graces that He wants to give to you. God is always ready to work wonders in the lives of the people who love Him. The apostle St. Paul said, “God makes all things work together for the good of those who love Him.” And, who are the ones who love God? At the Last Supper, Jesus said, “The one who loves Me is the one who keeps My Commandments.” Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord, will enter the Kingdom of God, but only the one who does the Will of my Father in Heaven. Many are called but few are chosen. The gate that leads to Heaven is a narrow gate and few there are who enter therein. Broad and wide is the road that leads to ruin and many there are who take that road.”

There are three very basic truths of the spiritual life:

  1. No one can be saved unless that person conforms his or her life to God’s Will. We have got to do God’s Will even when it is very difficult and involves much personal sacrifice. There is only one way to reach Heaven and that is by loving God and the only way we can definitively prove that we love God is by doing God’s Holy Will. We have got to conform our lives to God’s Wisdom and Will even when God’s Will does not conform to our opinions.
  2. It is impossible for anyone to do God’s Will without the help of God’s Grace. Human nature is weak and wounded by Original Sin. All of us experience the effects of Original Sin as a result of the disobedience of Adam and Eve in their rebellion against God. Our intellects are darkened and our wills are weakened. We all feel the attractive power of sin in our lives. We have got to have the help of God’s Grace constantly. We know that we cannot make it alone.
  3. God’s Grace comes to us first of all through the Seven Sacraments and most often for us all, through prayer. From this, it follows that no one can be saved without prayer.


The whole mystery of human salvation, your whole future and your whole relationship with God depend entirely on how much and how well you are willing to pray. The saints became saints because they understood the power of prayer. They believed and knew that prayer has the power to change lives, yours and those of others, and they proved it more than two centuries ago. St. Alphonsus Liguori, founder of the Redemptorist Order said, “Those who pray much, have great chance to be saved; those who pray little, have little chance to be saved and those who do not pray at all, have NO chance to be saved.” He said, God does not speak to those who do not speak to Him.

St. Theresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church, said, “There is only one road that leads to God and that road is prayer. If anyone shows you another road, they are deceiving you!” God’s power is unleashed in prayer as it is in no other form or fashion. Prayer can transform your human power, your natural abilities, talents and gifts into the supernatural power of God.

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus told the apostles, to pray, saying, “Ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you. Whoever asks receives, whoever seeks, finds, whoever knocks is let in.” That means God is a generous Father who very much wants to give good things to His adopted children. We are His adopted sons and daughters. That spirit of adoption entitles all of us to a heavenly inheritance. We are God’s heirs and joint heirs with Christ. God is a loving Father Who very much wants to share His Grace with us and the people who we love. If prayer has this kind of power and if God uses prayer to change and guide and direct the course of events in our lives, if prayer is so absolutely essential to our wellbeing, both now and for all eternity, then the burning question is this: WHY DO WE PRAY SO LITTLE?

Why do we always seem to have time for everything but prayer? How is it that so many of us can sit for hours at a time in front of the TV or computer and think nothing of it? We sit for three hours at a time and watch a ball game and think nothing of it. But, even five or ten minutes of prayer a day, seems like too much of a burden. We hear a great deal about scandals in the Church today and, yes, they are significant and worrisome. What seems a great scandal in the Church today is when a Christian sits for hours in front of the TV or computer and then claims not to have time to pray, his mind becomes boggled by the world, distracted by the noise and nonsense, sex and violence, plots and intrigues of the TV, and he fails to make the time to pray.

Many people could sum up their whole spiritual life very quickly: Mass on Sundays, a short prayer in the morning, grace before meals, prayer on the run, and a quick prayer at night. This is not good enough in the sight of Almighty God. God is a God of love, a God who is searching and thirsting and always craving for more of our love in return. His desire for love will not be satisfied and He will not be able to satisfy our spiritual needs unless we make the time to be alone with Him in prayer. God gives us so much, why do we give Him so little in return? Why is it that prayer is such a low priority in our lives? We might give several different reasons for this. Very often, it can be because we just don’t have enough Faith. We don’t really believe that God is going to hear and answer our prayers. We don’t really believe that God is infinitely wise and infinitely in love with each one of us and that He hears and answers our prayers in the way that is best for us. What more must God do to convince us that He desires our happiness more than we do ourselves and that He knows how best to get it for us. God saves the best for those who leave the choice to Him. Often we neglect prayer because we don’t love God enough. We do not want to make the time to be alone with Him. Perhaps we are not really convinced of God’s goodness or that He takes a personal interest in each and every one of us. Some people never pray, because they are not willing to wait for God to give an answer. We are living in a society where people value instant gratification. We want what we want, when we want it. We know what we want, and we got to have it now. We do not want to persevere in prayer. Some people never pray because they are just too proud to admit that they need God’s help or anyone’s help for that matter. They think they can make it alone and they are kidding themselves.

It has been said that the American spirit is characterized by rugged individualism, fierce independence, and self-sufficiency. This can often be a positive thing, but when it is transferred into the spiritual life, it is a negative thing. Jesus said, “I am the vine, you are the branches, apart from Me, you can do nothing.” Most of the time, we tend to neglect prayer because we are just too preoccupied with other things. We claim to be too busy to make time for prayer. We find ourselves caught up in the cares of the world, wrapped up in the hectic pace of our daily lives and we fail to make the time or take the effort needed to pray the way we know we should. We can find a million excuses not to pray. St. Augustine said, God is more willing to give the graces that we need, than we are to ask for them. Let us try to think of our relationship with God from His perspective. Archbishop Fulton Sheen said that most people look upon prayer in the same way that an aviator would look upon a Parachute, he always keeps one with him close by, he knows that it is there, he hopes he will never has to use it, but should an emergency arise, he will use it. All too often that is the way people look upon prayer. Many people will only turn to God when they want something for themselves or when some crisis comes up in their lives. Once they get what they want or the crisis passes, they stop praying altogether. God won’t hear from them until next time! Sadly, there are many who never bother with God, never bother to pray and never darken a church door until some crisis comes upon them. When suffering comes into their lives, all of a sudden they are down on their knees crying out, “O, help me, Lord!” Then, they demand God to make miracles and to answer their prayer exactly as they have made it. God is under no obligation to hear and answer the prayers of those who have made themselves strangers to Him and strangers to prayer. If we pray only in this manner, we will never grow spiritually. If our prayers are selfish and we serve God only for what He might give us, we are not motivated by true love of God and neighbor.

We have a serious obligation to pray for other people and for the graces of which they stand in need, especially for the sick, the suffering, sinners, those living without God, those walking in darkness, the innocent victims of war, violence, persecution, injustice and starvation, those who will die today. We are living in a world of suffering souls desperately in need of God’s Grace: the graces that can only come to many of them through our prayers. How many lives, how many souls are hanging in the balance at every moment? How many could be saved if only we would be generous and make more time to pray for them.

Our Blessed Mother at Fatima, in 1917, said that so many souls are lost because they have no one to pray for them. This is why, when Our Lord told us to pray the Our Father, He did not tell us to say, ‘Give me this day my daily bread, or forgive me my trespasses’ but rather, “Give us this day our daily bread, forgive us our trespasses, lead us not into temptation.” This is precisely because a mature faith, a true Catholic spirituality, true Christian charity, does not pray selfishly or just for its own interests. It prays for other people and it gives God thanks and adoration and makes reparation for sin. God loves a generous heart that forgets itself in order to pray for others. God will never be outdone in generosity.

God will always repay the least efforts that we make to help others a hundred-fold. While we are still in this life, all of us will have something to suffer. We can never be, nor should we wish to be, free of the Cross. There are many Christians today who are looking for a kind of Christianity that does not exist. They are looking for Christianity without the Cross, without pain, without sorrow, without suffering, and without sacrifice. Such a thing has never existed, nor will it ever exist. The Cross will always be with us. Know that God will never send a cross into our lives that is too heavy for us to bear. With every Cross God sends into our lives, He will always send us sufficient grace and strength to be able to bear it. Jesus said, “If anyone would be my disciple, let Him take up his cross daily and follow in my footsteps.” We know that when we offer our daily crosses and sufferings to God in union with the suffering of Our Blessed Lord on the Cross, our sufferings take on a tremendous redemptive value. They become a powerful prayer in our hands. Our first prayer, every morning, should be our MORNING OFFERING, the daily offering of ourselves: everything we have, we are and we do, offered totally to God in a spirit of love, charity, humility and simplicity. If we do this, we sanctify everything that we do and it becomes a prayer tremendously powerful and pleasing to Almighty God. We know that God does hear and answer every prayer in His own time and in His own way, and we know that when we pray, we will always get one of the three responses from God:

God will say, “YES or NO, or WAIT.”

Why does God say, NO? Why doesn’t God give us everything we ask for in prayer? It is simply because God is a loving Father who sees into the future. God exists outside the limitations of space and time. The past, present and future all belong to God. God lives in an eternal present. God sees every possibility, every contingency. God knows what is going to happen if we get the things we ask for. God knows that we don’t always ask for things that are good for us and our spiritual welfare. Suppose you are a parent and your little child asks you for a sharp knife to play with. Would you give it to him? Of course not! What if he asked for a pack of matches, a cigarette lighter or a gun? Would you give it to him? Of course you wouldn’t, because you are a loving parent and you can foresee that any one of those things could be dangerous to him. When we pray, God will give us nothing that He foresees will separate our hearts from Him and lead us away from Heaven. God will not always give us everything we want, but He will always give us the things that we really need. True worship is accepting God’s Holy Will however it presents itself in our lives.

True Worship is Trust and nothing glorifies God more! It is confidence in God’s providence. We know that God can arrange things for our happiness far, far better than we can even imagine. We must pray perseveringly and humbly. The Gospel shows us that Jesus Christ left us the example of a life devoted to prayer. Think of the Life of Our Lord on earth: Thirty three short years the Gospel tells us. He spent the first thirty of those years in prayer and preparation for His public ministry. During those three years, He left us an example of a life devoted to prayer. He began and He ended His days in prayer. Before every important event, action or decision of His public Life, Our Lord drew apart from everything and everyone, to make the time to be alone in prayer with His Father. This is exactly what we are called to do. Our Lord did that to leave us an example to follow. His example shows us the best and the most simple and the most effective way to pray. Speak to God from your heart, not just out of habit. We know that our prayers have a very special power, a special efficacy, when we come before Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. This was the secret of the saints. The saints knew that there was practically no favor they might ask that would be refused if they ask it in His Sacred Presence in the Blessed Sacrament. Every day, we come together to offer the most powerful prayer ever known to humanity, the greatest act of worship the world has ever known or will ever know and it is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

The Mass is an infinite treasure of graces. At every Mass, Jesus Christ places Himself into the hands of the priest as a victim, a victim of infinite value to obtain for us all the graces and blessings that we stand in need of. What is it that prevents us from having the fullness of those graces and blessings? It is because so much of the time we attend Mass without devotion, attention, and reverence. So much of the time we come forward to receive Holy Communion and we receive Our Lord coldly and indifferently. Prayer is conversation with God, lifting the mind and the heart to God. You speak to God and God speaks to you. Your daily spiritual reading and meditation will do so much to foster daily prayer and the devout reception of the Sacraments. If you want an especially powerful prayer for our time, pray the Holy Rosary. It is the prayer that comes to us directly from Heaven through the hands of Our Blessed Mother. Never think of the Rosary as vain repetition. The Rosary is the prayer of the Gospel. It is scriptural and is the prayer that helps us to meditate on the 15 central Mysteries on the Life of Our Blessed Lord and of the Holy Family. Prayer is the life of the soul. Without prayer we cut ourselves off from the treasures of God’s Grace. Without prayer, in time, we drift away from God and fall into temptation, mortal sin and fall away from the Faith. In prayer, we draw close to God, and learn to know Him, love Him and serve Him. In prayer, God reveals Himself to us, speaks to our hearts and guides our lives by the Light of the Holy Spirit. With prayer, God makes all things work together for the good of those who love Him.


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