Saints of the Day ~ October 19

SAINTS ISAAC JOGUES (1607-1646), JOHN de BRÉBEUF (1593-1649) and COMPANIONS, priests, lay brothers and martyrs – Patron saints of the Americas and Canada

Today, the Church honors eight North American martyrs, 6 priests and 2 lay brothers. All were heroic members of the Society of Jesus who were martyred in North America and who brought the Christian faith to the Huron, Iroquois and Mohawk Indians.

French Jesuits were the first missionaries to go to Canada and North America after Jacques Cartier mapped part of Canada in 1534. Their mission region extended from Nova Scotia to Maryland, and they had tirelessly devoted themselves to bringing the true faith to the Indian natives of that region. All were tortured before gaining for themselves the martyr’s crown.

Three of the eight North American martyrs were put to death in New York State, the remaining five in what is now Canada. There is a shrine to the United States’ martyrs at Auriesville, New York. The shrine to the Canadian martyrs is located at Fort Saint Mary near Midland, Ontario.

The names of the eight North American martyrs are:

Brother Rene Goupil, a lay brother martyred in 1642 in New York State;
Father Isaac Jogues, a priest, martyred on October 18, 1646 in New York State, and
Brother John de Lalande, a lay brother, martyred on October 19, 1646, also in New York State;
Father Antoine Daniel, a priest, martyred in Canada on July 4, 1648;
Father John de Brébeuf,
Father Charles Garnier,
Father Noel Chabanel and
Father Gabriel Lalemant, all priests and all martyred in Canada between March 16th to December 7th, 1649.

All eight Jesuit martyrs were canonized saints on June 29, 1930 by Pope Pius XI.

In the United States, their joint feastday is commemorated on October 19. In Canada, it is commemorated on September 26.

(From catholicnewsagency.com, saints.sqpn.com, americancatholic.org, catholicculture.org and newadvent.org)

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PRAYER

(The following prayer is from the Roman Breviary from the Proper for Saints Isaac Jogues, John de Brébeuf and Companions)

“Father, You consecrated the first beginnings of the faith in North America by the preaching and martyrdom of Saints John and Isaac and their companions. By the help of their prayers, may the Christian faith continue to grow throughout the world.

“We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.”

DAILY PRAYER REQUESTS

Please feel free to post your prayer request for today as a comment to this post. Your needs and intentions will be included in our daily offerings throughout the day and at the 3 o’clock hour for Divine Mercy, and your requests will be personally offered to our Heavenly Father, having faith in the words our Lord spoke to Saint Faustina, “Through the chaplet you will obtain everything, if what you ask for is compatible with My will.” (Diary, 1731)

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“God our Heavenly Father, Your Divine Son taught us to repay “to God what belongs to God” in the midst of the many seductions with which we are confronted in today’s secularistic society;

– in the midst of the spiritual battle in which we find ourselves, may we truly make Your Divine Truth a fundamental part of our everyday lives, so that we may remain Your faithful children, always wearing the full Armor of God and embracing Your Word and Your will for us in the life of faith which we profess and hold dear to our hearts. And through the profound wonder of Your Divine Love, may we always take refuge daily in the Most Sacred and Merciful Heart of Jesus. Amen.”

Mercy Minutes with Jesus (from Saint Faustina’s Diary)

October 18 ~ Jesus Arranged Things

Theme:  Writing the Diary

“As I was writing the above words, I saw the Lord Jesus leaning over me, and He asked, ‘My daughter, what are you writing?’ I answered, ‘I am writing about You, Jesus, about Your being hidden in the Blessed Sacrament, about Your inconceivable love and mercy for people.’

“And Jesus said, ‘Secretary of My most profound mystery, know that yours is an exclusive intimacy with Me. Your task is to write down everything that I make known to you about My mercy, for the benefit of those who by reading these things will be comforted in their souls and will have the courage to approach Me. I therefore want you to devote all your free moments to writing.’

“‘But, O Lord, shall I always have a moment, at least a brief one, in which to write?’ And Jesus answered, ‘It is not for you to think about that. Only do as much as you can, and I will always arrange things so that you will easily be able to do what I ask of you…’(Mercy Minutes with Jesus/Diary, 1693)

My prayer response:

Lord Jesus, thank You for arranging that the Diary of Saint Maria Faustina, Divine Mercy in My Soul, is available to us as a comfort and encouragement to approach You with great trust. (Mercy Minutes with Jesus)

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Mercy Minutes (from Saint Faustina’s Diary)

October 18 ~ I Rejoice that You Are So Powerful

Theme:  Happiness, Joy, Delight, Rejoice

“No one can conceive the happiness which my heart enjoys in its solitude, alone with God.” (Mercy Minutes/Diary, 1395)

“O my Lord, my soul is the most wretched of all, and yet You stoop to it with such kindness! I see clearly Your greatness and my littleness, and therefore I rejoice that You are so powerful and without limit, and so I rejoice greatly at being so little.” (Mercy Minutes/Diary, 1417)

“Oh, how great is the mercy of God, who allows man to participate in such a high degree in His divine happiness! At the same time, what great pain pierces my heart [at the thought] that so many souls have spurned this happiness.” (Mercy Minutes/Diary, 1439)

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Meditation for the Day

Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time, October 18

We Are Truly Engaged Today in a Great Spiritual Battle for Our Souls; Satan Is Attacking Everything Which Is Holy and Virtuous, Everything Which is Sacred, So As to Reduce to Rubble the Faith within the Hearts of God’s Children.

We read today near the beginning of Saint Paul’s First Letter to the Thessalonians, “For our gospel did not come to you in word alone, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with much conviction.”

In a previous meditation, I had asked the question, “What does my relationship with Jesus Christ mean to me, and how has this relationship affected my life?” Maybe we can look upon this question from a different perspective, “In my relationship with God, does my life – all that I think, all that I say and do – please Him and give Him glory?”

The questions are meant to help us reflect upon where we place God in our daily activities. We know only too well what many of the world’s cultures think of God – that faith in Him is archaic and outdated, that there is no place for the God of Judaism and Christianity in this modern, hedonistic and fast-paced world in which we live today!

For those of us who keep up-to-date on current events around the globe, we are unhappily witnessing an aggressive secularism which is slowly eroding the religious freedoms in many countries, even including the United States.

The societies of the world are more and more beginning to embrace atheistic forms of governments. It is a slowly creeping disease which has begun to eat away at the very fabric of the freedoms which many have taken for granted and enjoyed for centuries – the attack on life, family, and the very basic right of practicing our faith without being ridiculed, even ostracized or physically martyred, as we read about taking place in some countries.

And when we take the time to truly reflect upon these facts, we witness this pattern of atheistic thinking even within the shores of America. We see this in the extreme liberalism in many of our courts and politicians and in many who have rejected the basic Christian virtues of life. And to what end? – an embracement and espousal of extreme relativism, in which the truths contained within Sacred Scripture are no longer honored or respected.

With all this happening in the world today, it brings to mind a prophetic question our Lord had asked some two thousand years ago, “But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?”

Will He find the faith alive and well in you and me? This is why it is essential for us to take the time to truly reflect upon the question posed earlier, “In my relationship with God, does my life – all that I think, all that I say and do – please Him and give Him glory?”

In our First Reading today, we hear God speaking through His prophet Isaiah, “I am the LORD, there is no other, there is no God besides me…so that all may know, from the rising of the sun to its setting, that there is none besides me. I am the LORD, there is no other.”

And yet, we know only too well that the secularistic climate in which we live today has created gods in almost every facet of life – greed, power, fame, sexual gratification, and this long list sadly continues, limited only by our own imagination.

In essence, the One True God has been forcibly placed in the backseat of the lives of many peoples and governments – all for the sake of extreme modernism in the hearts and minds of many, ignoring the words of Sacred Scripture which we find in today’s Responsorial Psalm, “For great is the LORD and highly to be praised; awesome is he, beyond all gods. For all the gods of the nations are things of nought.”

Sadly, those who embrace and espouse atheistic relativism – a way of life which rejects God’s Truth and replaces it with secularistic and amoral truths – they wander through life in darkness, never truly realizing the wonder of God’s unfathomable Love and limitless Mercy which is readily available to them.

For it is Satan who has deceived and mislead them! And it is Satan who hopes to own their souls for eternity when their time here on Earth is ended – if they do not repent.

God has given to each one of us, to both you and me, this most wondrous and incredible gift of life which we enjoy! And by virtue of the fact that you are reading this today, you have freely said “yes” to the gift of faith which He has also freely given, and to which each of us have freely responded.

How we live our faith IS how we say “thank you” for the Love which He holds for each of us, a Love which is beyond all human measure of understanding – a Love which fills us, and a Love which guides, strengthens and supports us as we travel together through this valley of tears, with the many trials which society and our culture have set before us.

And in this journey of life, which we find ourselves traveling each day, we are sometimes asked to live a spiritual martyrdom of sorts, in which we accept the ridicule and condescending looks and thoughts for the faith which we joyfully embrace.

What many have failed to recognize is that God has given to each of us the strength of faith to endure the hardships which accompany our Christian way of life. And, in these hardships, our Lord calls us to be godlike in a godless society. He gives us the grace to endure with the societal difficulties, while still giving reverence and devotion to the One True God.

And the key word here is “balance” in our walk of faith. For those whose lives are secularly oriented and void of God’s Presence in their hearts, their lives become out of balance; their lives become but a hollow shell. For no matter how much they might believe otherwise, there is no lasting peace or happiness in their hearts or souls.

But for those of us whose hearts are guided by faith and who place God first in our lives, no matter what “Caesar” may require of us, we are still able to give “to God what belongs to God”, as our Lord says in today’s Gospel, and we will enjoy that serenity and tranquility of heart and soul which is God’s gift to each of us, for we know that our lives are emulating the very life of Christ, Himself.

We are truly engaged today in a great spiritual battle for our souls! Satan is attacking everything which is holy and virtuous, everything which is sacred, so as to reduce to rubble the faith within the hearts of God’s children!

The very purpose of these daily meditations is to help us grow in our spiritual lives, in our intimate relationship with our God. And, in this relationship, He invites us to open our hearts to the promises He has made concerning His Divine Mercy.

In 1937, our Lord said to Saint Maria Faustina, His Apostle of Divine Mercy, as recorded in her Diary, Divine Mercy in My Soul, “At three o’clock, implore My mercy, especially for sinners; and, if only for a brief moment, immerse yourself in My Passion, particularly in My abandonment at the moment of agony. This is the hour of great mercy for the whole world” (§ 1320).

In faith, may we give ourselves over to prayer for the sake of all of God’s children who are being blindly led through the darkness in life by the prince of lies. For, unknowing to them, their very salvation may depend upon the prayers we offer to the Divine Mercy of Almighty God.

In this spiritual battle in which the faithful are now engaged, may we put on the full armor of God, embracing the words which our Lord Jesus gave us not so long ago –

“O Blood and Water, which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a fount of Mercy for us, I trust in You!” (Diary, §§ 84, 187, 309).

May God bless you, God love you, and may God always keep you.

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Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.

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Scripture for the Day

  • “For our gospel did not come to you in word alone, but also in power and in the holy Spirit and with much conviction.” (1 Thessalonians 1:5a)
  • “I am the LORD, there is no other, there is no God besides me…so that all may know, from the rising of the sun to its setting, that there is none besides me. I am the LORD, there is no other.” (Isaiah 45:5a, 6)
  • “For great is the LORD and highly to be praised, to be feared above all gods. For the gods of the nations are idols.” (Psalm 96:4-5a)
  • “The wrath of God is indeed being revealed from heaven against every impiety and wickedness of those who suppress the truth by their wickedness…They exchanged the truth of God for a lie and revered and worshiped the creature rather than the creator, who is blessed forever. (Romans 1:18, 25a)
  • “But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?” (Luke 18:8b)
  • “The Lord does not delay his promise, as some regard ‘delay,’ but he is patient with you, not wishing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)
  • “Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you encounter various trials, for you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. And let perseverance be perfect, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” (James 1:2-4)
  • “At that he said to them, ‘Then repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.’(Matthew 22:21b)
  • “You will be hated by all because of my name, but whoever endures to the end will be saved.” (Matthew 10:22)
  • “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who in his great mercy gave us a new birth to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you.” (1 Peter 1:3-4)
  • “Put on the armor of God so that you may be able to stand firm against the tactics of the devil. For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness…” (Ephesians 6:11-12)

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Prayer for the Day

“Lord, because You have made me,
I owe You the whole of my love;
because You have redeemed me,
I owe You the whole of myself.

“…Draw me to you, Lord,
in the fullness of love.
I am wholly Yours by creation;
make me all Yours, too, in love.”

Saint Anselm (12th century, Doctor of the Church)

DAILY PRAYER REQUESTS

Please feel free to post your prayer request for today as a comment to this post. Your needs and intentions will be included in our daily offerings throughout the day and at the 3 o’clock hour for Divine Mercy, and your requests will be personally offered to our Heavenly Father, having faith in the words our Lord spoke to Saint Faustina, “Through the chaplet you will obtain everything, if what you ask for is compatible with My will.” (Diary, 1731)

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“Almighty and Most Merciful Father, may Your Holy Spirit teach us to embrace Your will and trust unwaveringly in Your providential Love for us as Your children each and every day of our lives;

– and may Your Holy Wisdom guide and strengthen us always to embrace Your Divine Truth in our individual walks of faith – that our Lord Jesus is our only Way to eternal peace and happiness, the Eternal Light who shall lead us to a life of everlasting and unending Love, all through Christ our Lord. Amen.”

Mercy Minutes with Jesus (from Saint Faustina’s Diary)

October 15 ~ Bless This Pen

Theme:  Writing the Dairy

“As I took the pen in hand, I addressed a short prayer to the Holy Spirit and said, ‘Jesus, bless this pen so that everything You order me to write may be for the glory of God.’ Then I heard a voice:

‘Yes, I bless [it], because this writing bears the seal of obedience to your superior and confessor, and by that very fact I am already given glory, and many souls will be drawing profit from it. My daughter, I demand that you devote all your free moments to writing about My goodness and mercy. It is your office and your assignment throughout your life to continue to make known to souls the great mercy I have for them and to exhort them to trust in My bottomless mercy.’(Mercy Minutes with Jesus/Diary, 1567)

My prayer response:

Thank You, Lord Jesus, for blessing the pen of Saint Faustina with which she wrote under holy obedience. Her faithfulness to You continues to inspire people around the world. Her Diary has now been translated into dozens of languages and reaches out to millions in need of Your Mercy. (Mercy Minutes with Jesus)

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Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.

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Mercy Minutes (from Saint Faustina’s Diary)

October 15 ~ A Joy That I Cannot Contain

Theme:  Happiness, Joy, Delight, Rejoice

“Oh, if only the suffering soul knew how it is loved by God, it would die of joy and excess of happiness! Some day, we will know the value of suffering, but then we will no longer be able to suffer. The present moment is ours.” (Mercy Minutes/Diary, 963)

“I often receive light and the knowledge of the interior life of God and of God’s intimate disposition, and this fills me with unutterable trust and a joy that I cannot contain within myself; I desire to dissolve completely in Him…” (Mercy Minutes/Diary, 1102)

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Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.

Por favor Comente, Le Gusta y Comparta, y Sugiera a tus amigos en Facebook – en difundir el mensaje del Misericordioso Amor de Dios.