St. Philomena, Ven. Pauline Jaricot and St. John Vianney – their separate lives were inspiring, but the three together were given miraculous rewards by God for their devotion to Him.
It is no coincidence that the official Feast of St. Philomena falls on the 10th of August, for that is the very day that the Great Miracle of Mugnano occurred and the day that St. Philomena granted the Venerable Pauline Jaricot her wonderful healing. It was the miraculous cure of Pauline Jaricot which led to Philomena’s canonization.
Pope Pius XI canonized St. Jean-Marie Vianney in 1925 and named him "Patron of all Parish Priests" and said that his spirituality in its totality should be followed by them. This would necessarily include his deep devotion to St. Philomena.
The present Pope has dedicated 2009 as the "Year for Priests" and has honored St. Jean Vianney by elevating him to be the "Patron of all Priests". Because he was such a dear friend of the Ven. Pauline Jaricot, her cause for sainthood takes on new fervor. Pauline was not only the foundress of the Propagation of the Faith, she also founded the Living Rosary Association to promote the faith through the united prayer of the Daily Decade of the Holy Rosary, and the distribution of good Catholic literature in the wake of heresy and persecution, which was rampant in her own day in the aftermath of the French Revolution.
These three lives are very closely intertwined in other ways. Note their influence on the Leaders of the Church:
Pope Gregory XVI raised Philomena to the status of Saint and also named her the Patroness of the Living Rosary Association and Pope Pius IX granted to her the glorious title: Patroness of the Children of Mary.
The Living Rosary Association founded by Pauline Jaricot in Lyon, France was approved and richly indulgenced by Pope Gregory XVI and accorded official canonical status on January 27, 1832.
On January 13, 1837, Pope Gregory XVI named Philomena, Patroness of the Living Rosary Association and declared her to be the "Thaumaturga," the "Great Wonder-Worker of the Nineteenth Century."
On June 16, 1907, the Supreme Pontiff Pius X, receiving in audience Fr. Petit, exclaimed: "...the great argument in favor of devotion to St. Philomena is the Curé of Ars. By her, in her name, and through her intercession, he obtained innumerable graces and continual prodigies.
Saint Pope Pius X named St. Jean Vianney, Patron of the
Archconfraternity of St. Philomena.
In an apostolic brief on May 21, 1912, Saint Pope Pius X extended the
Archconfraternity of St. Philomena to the entire Church, by raising it to the status of Universal. He stated "All the decisions and declarations of his predecessors regarding St. Philomena should in no way be altered."
Saint Philomena’s influence was life-changing for both Pauline Jaricot and St. Jean Vianney. Pauline’s miraculous cure by St. Philomena on August 10, 1835, provided the impetus for formally elevating St. Philomena to the Altar. She then became the only person recognized as a Saint solely on the basis of her miraculous intercession.
When Pauline shared the story of her healing with her dear friend, St. Jean Vianney (Curé of Ars, France) and bestowed upon him the relics of St. Philomena obtained from the Shrine in Mugnano, Italy, she prophetically said to St. Jean Vianney, "Have full confidence in this great Saint, she will obtain for you all that you ask." Both St. Jean Vianney and Ven. Pauline Jaricot grew up at the same period of history and both suffered very much from the persecution of the Church during the French Revolution. Priests were hunted down and sent to prison if they would not take an oath to the State, and Pauline herself was baptized at home, by a priest faithful to Rome. The holy Curé saw in St. Philomena a New Light for the Church Militant.
Confraternity of St. Philomena was founded on October 6, 1876 by Fr. Luis Petit and approved by Monsignor Guibert, Cardinal-Archbishop of Paris. The aim of the
Confraternity is to unite lay people in their devotion to St. Philomena. Both the
Confraternity and the Living Rosary Association, from France, grew worldwide and were canonically approved. Popes of the Nineteenth Century showered both with numerous plenary indulgences.
A hundred years went by and both organizations, while still based in France, faded out of sight. In 1984, a year after Fr. Giovanni Braschi was appointed Rector of the Sanctuary of Saint Philomena in Mugnano del Cardinale, Avellino, Italy; he decided to revive the
Archconfraternity in Italy. Fr. Braschi had grown up in Mugnano and had watched how devoted that small community was to St. Philomena and wanted to see this devotion rekindled.
The Living Rosary Association began its revival in the United States on December 8, 1986 with Patti and Richard Melvin. What was needed in the world was a strong determined effort and much prayer. The Living Rosary, uniting all the members in a common intention through the Holy Rosary, was the ingenious plan of Pauline Jaricot to utilize the strength of a few isolated souls and enable them to effect their vigor upon those more spiritually impoverished. This rich treasure would obtain the conversion of sinners, the preservation of the Faith in our own country and its propagation throughout the whole universe and the exaltation of Holy Mother the Church. Today, the Association numbers over ELEVEN million members including 1,408 Archbishops, bishops, priests and religious brothers and sisters. Thirty nine Regional Missionary Centers across the world are active and united with the Universal Center in Dickinson, Texas, United States.
In 1988, Fr. Braschi traveled to Dickinson, Texas and asked Patti and Richard Melvin to help him revive the devotion to St. Philomena in Mugnano del Cardinale, Italy. The rest is history! St. Philomena has awakened from her sleep once again and her devotion is spreading like bushfire across the entire globe. Now is her hour, there is much work to be done. St. Philomena is a "Gift" from God to be given to all who will invite her to make her shrine in their hearts. This powerful and kind child Saint longs to bring all souls to Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Will you help us help her, reach souls? To all the suffering and sick, she pours out her healing balm.
This week marks the annual Feast of Saint Philomena and members from Australia, India, Israel, Italy, Ukraine, and the United States wish to share images and descriptions of their events with you.
Yours in Christ devoted to bringing all souls to Jesus through Mary, Patti Melvin, ULRA Director
Please pray for me as I will pray for you all the days of my life!
Greetings in the Lord Jesus and thanks a million for the work you are doing, and for the prayers. I am writing this email to thank you and your team very much for the great assistance you are rendering to us here in Australia. I really thank you very much on behalf of my Christians for being our second Christ.
On the feast of St. Philomena we had Mass and many other prayers for you and all the other members of the Living Rosary Association. For your information, Beagle Bay is a remote area of Australia, and we do get so many tourists coming here. So, I decided to use one of the side altars in the church for St Philomena. In this particular altar I have put most of the Sacramentals you have being sending to us. Anyone is free to take and use them. It is amazing how the tourists are happy with that. I have already announced in the church about all the precious gifts we have received from you. The parishioners and visitors are so happy and they assure you their prayers.
I really appreciate your generosity and we will keep all of you in our daily prayers. May the God almighty bless you graciously.
One hundred and Fifty Three promoters and members of the Universal Living Rosary Association of Saint Philomena (ULRA) participated. Mass was offered by Our Spiritual Director Rev. Fr. Ignatius Prasad, assisted by a Senior Priest, Fr. Narala Duraisamy of the Fathers of the Precious Blood. Two Rev. Sisters of Bridgentinne also participated. St. Jude's Catholic Church, Nanganallur, Chennai, India.
Fr. Angelo Beda Ison, OFM Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre and Calvary Roman Catholic Church Jerusalem
Happy feast of St. Philomena, virgin and martyr!
I celebrated today the Holy Mass at our Franciscan private Chapel of the Sorrowful Mother on Calvary at the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem at 9:00 a.m. today, August 10 for the intentions of the directress Patti Melvin, the volunteers, employees, benefactors and the universal members of the Universal Living Rosary of St. Philomena both living and deceased.
As has been my tradition, I put on the red St. Philomena chasuble which was sent by Mrs. Patti Melvin from Texas and the St. Philomena corporal which was made especially by Mrs. Terri de los Santos of Los Angeles at the altar and put the copies of the member’s names and countries underneath the corporal. My friend, Philippe Masson, a former pilgrim who is the instant God-sent answer to my prayers, was the only one at the private chapel. He was delighted to have assisted me in the Holy Mass. He was pleased to learn about the life and martyrdom of St. Philomena for the first time during my short homily.
I always remember you in my daily Mass celebration and Rosary. We truly have a great wonder worker saint as intercessor in heaven. May the Lord grant our good heart's desires through the intercession of St. Philomena, virgin and martyr. Once again, happy feast of our great Saint Philomena!
Prayerful best wishes to all! Fr. Angelo Beda Ison, OFM Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre and Calvary Jerusalem
Our Lady of Grace Church Sanctuary of Saint Philomena Fr. Giovanni Braschi Mugnano del Cardinale Italy
Video clip below of the Feast Celebration at the Sanctuary of St. Philomena, where the Battenti enter the church while Fr. Braschi is taking photographs to record the event.
The Italian ritual in honor of Santa Filomena – Battenti - is a primitive yet very holy and honored tradition which is celebrated on the second Sunday of August. This ritual has a strong personal value for the people from Mugnano del Cardinale, Italy and surrounding area. Indeed, many emigrants come back to Mugnano from all over Italy in order to take part in this ceremony.
The protagonists of this festival are called “Battenti” or “fujenti” due to the fact that they walk barefoot stamping their feet in a rhythmic way. They wear white trousers and a white shirt and a red band on the waist (the colors for purity and martyrdom).
The Battenti who walk to the village arrive at the sanctuary in the morning. The sanctuary is located in the main square of the town. The Battenti bring offerings of flowers, candles and the “toselli.” The toselli are symbolic constructions of sand molded in different sizes and shapes. They are decorated with ribbons, paper and sea shells.
Some of the Battenti carry the large statue of Santa Filomena. The “capo paranza” leads the marchers by playing the trumpet. The devotees go on knees up the sanctuary stairs. They continue on their knees to the altar. They come close to the saint’s statue and then they start crying and praying. It is not rare that some of them fall in to a trance.
At midday, the mass takes place and in the afternoon there is a procession. On the 21st of August, there is a festival to celebrate Pio X, who was a promoter for S. Filomena’s cult.
I would like to report for the celebration of Feast of St. Philomena which only celebrated on after 8 years ago. We successfully celebrated on the 8th of August. Attendance of the Mass is over 300. We held annual meeting with Zonal promoters of the Universal Living Rosary Association of Saint Philomena they all are 20 numbers. We served the audience tea and cakes and lunch for promoters. We invited 2 parish priests but they could not come for their monthly recollection. We decided to have Rosary Crusade on October in both parishes. The Parish priest agreed for that. We distributed rosaries, scapular, medals and holy oil to old and new members. I consumed all what I keep. Please consider other packages for us, I regularly now and then because the members are increasing.
Thank God, St. Philomena and to you Patti.
Sincerely yours in Jesus and Mary, Fr. Joseph Mung Myanmar Asia
A photograph of Fr. Joseph Mung from earlier this year.
Celebration of the Feast of St. Philomena at Khanewal
St. Philomena Rosary Group celebrated the feast of St. Philomena on 9th of August at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, Khanewal. A large number of Christians from Khanewal city and suburban villages had gathered to pay tribute to St. Philomena for her intercession to grant them a gift of new life. Mr. Afzaal Anwar Khokhar Director of the Universal Living Rosary Association of Saint Philomena (ULRA) Pakistan centre attended the feast as a guest of honor.
The program of celebration started with the recitation of the Glorious Mysteries, the end of each mystery prayers the victimization of Christians of Koriyan and Gojra along with the names of sick persons who had requested for the grant of physical as well as spiritual graces were said. The Holy Mass was offered by very Rev. Fr. Yusaf Sohan, Parish Priest and Vicar General of the Diocese of Multan. His homely was based on St. Philomena’s absolute faith and confidence on the bounty and love of God who is the only refuge and support of human frailty and misery. Rev. Father encouraged the Christian to trust God for the future and invoke the intercession of St. Philomena and pray the Rosary daily. Mr. Afzaal appreciated the efforts of Mr. Shahzad Francis of St. Philomena Group of Khanewal for promoting the Rosary in all places of the Diocese of Multan. Furthermore Mr. Afzaal introduced people with the life of St. Philomena and of her being nominated as Patroness of the ULRA. Encouraging the Christians Mr. Afzaal said that St. Philomena is a hope of hearts afflicted and she is always willing to intercede Jesus for all who pray to her with trust and they would never be disappointed. The St. Joseph’s Church's Choir comprising or the group of civil lines, Khanewal made the Holy Mass very meaningful with their sweet voices and melodious songs. Prayer for the sick was said by Mr. Afzaal and Rosaries, miraculous medals, scapulars, and holy oil were distributed among the people. The statues of St. Philomena were given with a very small price and the demand for more statues was made to Mr. Afzaal. Rev. Father Yousaf Sohan greatly appreciated the services of St. Philomena Rosary Group, Khanewal to make arrangements for celebration of the feast of St. Philomena very attractive through their excellent arrangements and approach to Christians in all the colonies of Khanewal. He also thanked Rev Sr. Costanza O.P and Sr. Roshan O.P for decorating the Church for the celebration of the feast. The large gathering of Christians indicated the signs of new spiritual life and devotion for the Holy Rosary prayers in Khanewal.
Celebration of Feast of St. Philomena at Sargodha Pakistan
The Feast of St. Philomena was celebrated on 11th of August, 2009 with great fervour at Jinnah Colony Sargodha. Holy Mass was offered especially in her honor which was offered by Rev. Fr. Iqbal. A great number of people participated in the Holy Mass.
Rev. Fr. Iqbal very nicely explained about the life of St. Philomena; her life, her sacrifice, her love with God and her faithfullness. He also described about the little saint's purity and faith. On this occassion special prayers were offered for the people of Gojra.
Holy Mass was especially attended by Rev. Fr. Riaz Younas, Mr. Sikandar Farman (the rep. of Catholic Naqib), Shakeel, Farhad and Mr. Akhtar Joseph (Catechist). Special wishes were sent by Rev. Fr. Leonard Stigger, Rev. Fr. Mukhtar Alam, Rev. Fr. Anthon Elias, Bro. Nasir and Mr. Afzaal Anwar Khokhar through there messages.
A cake was arranged by Mr. Parvaiz Feroze (Rep. of ULRA at Sargodha) and after cake cutting ceremony and meals the program ended with pray that God might grant us courage to build purity and faith like St. Philomena.
Universal Living Rosary Association of Saint Philomena Missionary Center Feast Day Celebrations August 10 and 11, 2009.
Carmelita G. Baric San Carlos City Negros Occisdental 6127 Philippines
For our Universal Center in Texas, USA, our local center and all the local centers and their needs.
For our Director, Patti Melvin, and our local ULRA leaders
For all the Bishops, priests, religious deacons, seminarians, and missionaries enrolled.
For all our generous minded benefactors and their families.
For all the deceased members of the Association and all the souls of our dear loved ones.
For all the intentions of each and every member of the Living Rosary all over the world.
For all the devotees of St. Philomena
And for our personal intentions in silence.
These are the intentions we prayed during the novena at Saint John’s Evangelist Parish every 4:00 PM. We used the novena format you posted in the website. First, we recite the Reflection, then the daily prayer, concluding prayer, then the Litany of St. Philomena and our Living Rosary and lastly the prayer for priests (everyday). At first we do not have help especially do not have money. I was worried that I cannot schedule a Holy Mass for St. Philomena until 10 good people helped me financially. I organized the Holy Mass and invited some of our ULRA member priests. We had tarpaulin as our advertisement and some coupon posted in walls and schools.
“It is time to thank Philomena”
Novena to Saint Philomena starts on Aug. 3-11
Solemn Eucharistic Celebration in Honor of St. Philomena
Aug. 11 at 5:30 PM
Saint John the Evangelist Parish, Dagupan City
We gave stipends for the priests 1000 PHP each.
The priests were
Co-Celebrants: Rev. Msgr. Orlando C. Sabangan, PC
Rev. Msgr. Segundo B. Gotoc, HP
Rev. Fr. Immanuel Escano
Rev. Fr. Jonathan Songcuan
And the Main Celebrant:
Rev. Msgr. Rafael S. Magno, Jr., JCD, HP
Vicar General and Parish Priest
There were a lot of people who attended the Mass and gave thanks to St. Philomena for her undeniable prayers/ intercessions.
We also made cake for St. Philomena.
Flowers during the Novena and during the Mass were very much beautiful.
The large icon of St. Philomena – that was the tarpaulin you sent me, was framed and placed in the Parish for the devotees. During the Holy Mass, Rev. Fr. Jonathan Songcuan brought his relic of St. Philomena. It is a paper, but the paper was used to cover the bones of St. Philomena from Mugnano, Italy and the signature of the Cardinal and description of the bone is seen at the back of the icon of St. Philomena (see picture)
During the sermon of Msgr. Magno, he told the people that St. Philomena was never removed from the Sainthood; He defended her by means of Papal support and the saint especially Ven. Pauline and St. John Vianney. He also told the people that St. Philomena is a gift to us in our time, she teaches us about purity, patience and love to God. He addressed it to the youth of todays especially when Msgr. Magno talked about the “sin against purity”.
But before the mass will begin, we recited the last day novena, when all the microphones at the main altar has no sound. I am very sure that it was the work of the devil to stop the solemnity, but we did not lose hope, we transferred to the side chapel of the Cathedral and there we celebrated the Holy Mass.
I am very much grateful to all the people who helped me make the celebration a successful one. I did my best to bring Saint Philomena in the Mother church of the Archdiocese of Lingayen – Dagupan, to show that she was never removed a saint and that the Archdiocese is very much supportive to my mission.
Thank you very much to all the benefactors and especially you, Mother for reawakening the devotion to St. Philomena
Viva St. Philomena!
Viva Ven. Pauline!
God Bless us All!
MOST HOLY REDEEMER PARISH Santuario de Santa Philomena Malac Street SFDM, Masambong, Quezon City Metro Manila Philippines 1115 Procession: August 9 Main Feast: Augus 11 Organize by: The Universal Living Rosary Association of Saint Philomena Manila 430 Mayon Street Quezon City Metro Manila 1114 Philippines
Our Lady of the Taper Catholic Church Rev. Father Jason Jones North Road Cardigan Wales United Kingdom
I was able to Offer the Holy Mass Extraordinary Form for members of the Universal Living Rosary Association of Saint Philomena (ULRA) here in Wales. I am the rector of the Shrine of Our Lady of the Taper the national Shrine in Wales. This Shrine was established by the Servant of God John Paul II in 1986. This was the second Living Rosary Pilgrimage. After the Latin mass we had a tea break and enrollment in the Living Rosary, we then returned to the Church for procession of the Relic of St Philomena as her litany was sung followed by Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, the Rosary and Benediction and then the afternoon finished with the blessing with the oil of St Philomena.
Happy feast to you all and assurances of my prayers.
Immediately following a Mass for St. Philomena at the Church of the Holy Spirit in San Antonio, Texas, devotees participated in a procession to her statue and prayed St. John Vianney's Litany. More than 50 devotees took part in the celebration and enjoyed sharing personal testimonials after the Mass about how St. Philomena has touched their lives and performed "miracles" as a result of her intercession for various illnesses, financial issues, and matters concerning their children. Devotees received the new 2-CD set to help commemorate St. Philomena's Feast Day. The CD's were distributed by a member of the Universal Living Rosary Association of St. Philomena and were made possible by The Family of Saint Philomena, Glasgow Scotland.
Our Lady of Peace Church and Shrine St. Philomena Feast Day Celebration Sunday, August 9 @ 2pm Celebrants: Rev. Michael Pintacura, Rev. John Oblinski Hosted by: Our Lady of Peace Rosary Makers Our Lady of Peace Church and Shrine 2800 Mission College Blvd. Santa Clara, CA 95054 http://www.olop-shrine.org
Saint Daniel the Prophet Roman Catholic Church 1030 North Hayden Road Scottsdale, Arizona Rev. Thaddeus McGuire http://www.sdtp.net
Dear Patti, Father asked people to sign up for the Universal Living Rosary and had people at all the doors to take sign ups. He mentioned that your group was responsible for arranging for him to borrow the relic from a lady in Las Vegas. There were probably 350 people at the Mass, he also had one this morning. Almost everyone came up to be blessed with the Relic and the St. Philomena Oil from Italy. YOU are responsible for a lot of the graces that were poured out during the Mass and during the blessings. This note is just to say THANK YOU for finding the Relic for us to use. I'll be praying that next year Father can borrow one from someone closer or, maybe by then the parish will have their own. The hymns were so beautiful... All old hymns to Our Lady and the Sacred Heart. Father led the Rosary before the Mass. It's nice to see a priest in this day and age doing that! That never happens.
Greetings through the Sacred Hearts, St. John Vianney and St Philomena.
Yesterday I offered Mass in honor of St. Philomena and for the intentions of the Universal Living Rosary Association of Saint Philomena (ULRA). I have distributed the pictures of St Philomena together with the rosaries, and last Sunday blessed over 100 children with the oil of St Philomena. May indeed the little but great heavenly warrior for souls reward your apostolate. Also the additional scapulars arrived, so many have been bestowed, all my hospital and home visits, are marked with the brown scapulars together with the sacrament of the sick/unction etc.
Please pardon me if I have not found time to be recording details, especially membership by attributing decades, the large poster of St. Philomena hangs in a school, the Rev. Mother, was delighted to see St. Philomena and all the pictures and rosaries as she has prayed to St Philomena for years since childhood!
Thank you all the members and benefactors all the people who work humbly and many unknown people behind the scenes of organization, postage and packing and ongoing collaborators. Tomorrow 13th August, marks the ordination date of the Cure´ d’Ars.