Monthly Archives: May 2013

20130527 In God we trust 我們信賴天主

In modern time, many people exalted reason to the point of excluding faith; they relied on self rather than God. In the meanwhile God raised up saints who gave powerful examples of trustful reliance on God.

Culture of saints

               St. John Bosco (1815-1888), St. Joseph Cottolengo (1786-1842), St. Luigi Guanella (1842-1915) and St. Louis Orione (1872-1940) were saints in northern Italy who founded religious congregations and helped numerous people with great reliance on Divine Providence.

Don Bosco would undertake mighty works with little or nothing in his purse. His contractors and suppliers, however, were perfectly sure that everything would be taken care of.  One of them said, “Would that we were as certain of being paid by everyone as we are by Don Bosco. He may be slow but he never fails, for he has Divine Providence at his disposal. Don Bosco’s word is more than a banknote.”

From 1863 to 1868, Don Bosco built the magnificent Basilica of Mary. Help of Christians. When the foundation of the church was laid, Don Bosco only had eight pennies to pay the contractor. He said to him, “Don’t be alarmed, the Madonna will see to the payment of her church. I am just the instrument, the cashier.”

At the end the church was paid for to the last cent. Generous contributors paid for one sixth of the cost and the rest came from the small offerings of those who had received favors from Our Lady. Don Bosco said, “The whole church was put up by means of graces granted by Mary. Every stone, every ornament, represents one of her graces.”

St. Joseph Cottolengo was a friend of Don Bosco. St. Luigi Guanella stayed with Don Bosco for three years, and St. Louis Orione was a favorite student of Don Bosco. These saints, with charismatic reliance on Divine Providence, responded to the needs of the time, and founded religious institutes which still exist today.

Cottolengo convinced his religious that they would continue to do wonderful things if they responded promptly and trustfully to the impulses from above.

Guanella said, “Providence cared for all who trust.” He warned, “Lack of trust is an obstacle to Providence.”

Orione said, “Our policy is the great and divine charity which does good for all. Let our policy be that of the ‘Our Father.’”

Little Flower

            St. Therese of Lisieux (1874-1897) is one of the most popular saints in modern time. She said, “Sanctity does not consist in this or that practice but in a disposition of heart which makes us humble and small in the arms of God” 

               St. Therese entered the Carmelite convent at fifteen and died at twenty-four. Her nine years in convent were spent in an ordinary way with household chores, sacristy works, and the training of novices. The life of St. Therese demonstrated that the heroism of love is possible in the most ordinary and humble situations of daily life. She said, “Miss no single opportunity of making some small sacrifice, here by a smiling look, there by a kindly word; always doing the smallest right and doing it all for love.”

            She said, “Trust and trust alone should lead us to love.” 

Divine Mercy

            St. Faustina Kowalska (1905-1938) of Poland was an apostle of Divine Mercy. She entered the convent around twenty, and in the 1930’s received private revelations from Christ regarding devotion to Divine Mercy.

Like St. Therese, St. Faustina suffered in silence during her life time. Through her writings, Christ invited people to trust in the mercy of God. Christ said to her, “The graces of My mercy are drawn by means of one vessel only, and that is trust. The more a soul trusts, the more it will receive.”                       













20130520 Local churches revived 地方教會的甦醒

The nineteenth century saw the revival of the Catholic Church in France, Germany, Ireland, and England. During that period the Church was blessed by the life of Blessed Frederick Ozanam (1813-1853) in France, and by the lives of Blessed Dominic Barberi (1792-1849) and Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890) in England.

Frederick Ozanam

At the Royal College of Lyons, the young Frederick Ozanam and his fellow students organized conferences of literature, history, and philosophy to support one another in the faith.

During one of the conferences, a young socialist challenged Frederick saying, “The Church is hypocrisy. What are you doing for the poor?” This conversation led to the establishment of the Conference of Charity, which eventually became the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.

Frederick said, “If we are too young to intervene in the social struggle, are we then to remain passive in the middle of a world which is suffering and groaning? No, a preparatory path is open to us. Before doing public good, we can try to do good to a few. Before regenerating France, we can give relief to a few of her poor.”

Before his death at forty, Frederick pioneered the newspaper, The New Era, to secure justice for the poor and the working class. He also oversaw the expansion of the Society to other countries.

Today, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul is an international organization with over one million members helping thirty million poor people daily.

Dominic Barberi

            An orphan at eight, Dominic was raised up by his uncle and aunt. When Napoleon closed all the religious houses in Italy, Dominic became acquainted with several Passionist living in exile near his town. During this time, he experienced an interior call to preach to the people in England.

Dominic joined the Passionist and was ordained a priest in 1821. He ministered in Italy for nineteen years, but his heart was in England. He learnt English and met with English visitors in Rome.

In 1840, Dominic and his companions established the first Passionist monastery outside of Italy in Belgium. Finally in 1842, he established the first Passionist house in England.

In his short seven years in England, Dominic worked tirelessly as a home-missioner. He established three churches and several chapels, preached numerous missions and received hundreds of converts, including John Henry Newman, into the Catholic Church.

John Henry Newman

            Since the Protestant revolt, the freedom of Catholics in England had been restricted. The Act of Catholic Emancipation signed by the king on April 13, 1829 permitted Catholics in England to worship publicly.

The Oxford Movement (1833-1845) represented growing interest in the Catholic Church in the Protestant University of Oxford. John Henry Newman was the most famous convert to Catholicism in the Oxford Movement. He entered the Catholic Church in 1845 and was ordained a priest in Rome the next year. He came back to England and established the Oratory of St. Philip near Birmingham in 1848.

As a Catholic priest, John Henry Newman wrote Parochial and Plain Sermons, An Essay in Aid of a Grammar of Assent (a treatise on the philosophy of religion), and Apologia Pro Vita Sua ( the classic defense of his religious views).

On May 12, 1879, John Henry Newman was made Cardinal by Pope Leo XIII.

During his trip to England, Pope Benedict XVI beatified John Henry Newman on September 19, 2010.

On November 4, 2009, Benedict XVI issued the apostolic constitution, Anglicanorum Coetibus, enabling Anglicans to enter into full communion with the Catholic Church while preserving elements of their distinctive Anglican spiritual and liturgical heritage.

In accordance with Anglicanorum Coetibus, the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham was established on January 15, 2011 under the patronage of Blessed John Henry Newman.




























充斥基督新教的英國牛頓大學,經歷一項名為「牛頓運動」(1833-1845) ,使很多人對天主教重新產生興趣,其中一位皈化聖教的人,是箸名的若望.亨利.紐曼:他在1845年加入天主教,翌年在羅馬晉鐸,晉鐸後返回英國,1848年在伯明翰郡建起了聖斐利伯的經堂會。









20130513 Founders repaired Church 會祖們修補教會

During the French Revolution, heroic men and women preserved the Catholic Faith with great fidelity. After the revolution, the Church in France was rebuilt by dedicated clergy and faithful. Some of the heroes of that period include St. Julie (Juila) Billiart (1751-1816), St. Mary Magdalen Postel (1756-1846), and St. Eugene De Mazenod (1782-1861).

Julie Billiart

            As a young girl, playing “school” was Julie Billiart’s favorite game. At 14, Julie dedicated herself to God by a vow of chastity, and at 16 she started to teach in order to support her family.

On the winter of 1774, a robber attempted to murder Julie’s father by discharging a pistol into the house. This event shocked the nervous system of Julie badly and she suffered thirty years of poor health. Julie was paralyzed for twenty-two years.

During the French Revolution, Julie offered her home as a hiding place for loyal priests. Hence, five times in three years she was forced to flee in secret.

One day, Julie had a vision. She saw the Crucified Lord surrounded by a large group of religious women dressed in a habit she had never seen. Julie was told by an inner voice that these religious would be her daughters and that she would start an institute for the education of young girls.

In 1803, Julie laid the foundation of the Sisters of Notre Dame and lived in community with a few companions. In 1804, Julie was asked by a priest to pray a Novena. During the Novena, on the Feast of the Sacred Heart, the priest said, “Mother, if you have any faith, take one step in honor of the Sacred Heart.” Julie got up and was cured from her paralyzation.

On October 15, 1804, Julie and her companions took the first vows in the new Congregation of Sisters of Notre Dame. Julie was elected as Mother General of the new congregation.

A favorite expression of Julie was “How good the good God is!”

 Mary Magdalen Postel

At 18, Mary Magdalen Postel took the vow of chastity and opened a school for the girls at Barfluer. The school was closed by the revolutionaries during the French Revolution.

Mary Magdalen became a leader in Barfluer for loyal Catholics. She sheltered loyal priests in her home, and was authorized to keep the Blessed Sacrament at her home and to minister Viaticum to the dying.

In 1801, the Concordat between Napoleon and the Vatican allowed freedom of religion for French Catholics. Mary Magdalen was able to teach religion openly. She and three other teachers took religious vows in 1807 and started the Sisters of Christian Schools of Mercy.

Mary Magdalen said, “I want to teach the young and inspire them with the love of God and a liking for work. I want to help the poor and relieve some of their misery.”

Eugene De Mazenod

            Eugene De Mazenod was the offspring of noble family in southern France. During the revolution, he spent some years in exile in Italy. He entered the seminary at 26.

He wrote, “The state of abandonment in which I saw the Church was one of the causes determining me to enter the ecclesiastical life.”

As a priest, Eugene directed his ministry to the poor. Other priests joined him to labor for the poor, and formed a community for the works of the missions and direction of seminaries. The community eventually became the Oblates of Mary Immaculate.

In 1832, Eugene was consecrated bishop. He became the Bishop of Marseilles in 1837.

As Bishop, Eugene built churches, founded parishes, cared for his priests, and developed catechetics for the young.

The Oblates were sent to the five continents for missions. Pope Pius XI said, “The Oblates are the specialists of difficult missions.”





儒利. 雅貝略少時喜歡玩「學校」遊戲,十四歲時得本堂神父特准,向天主發貞潔願,十六歲任職教師以幫補家計。








1803年,儒利. 雅貝略與幾位同伴,創立「諾默聖母會」,翌年,一位神父要雅貝略做一次九日敬禮。耶穌聖心節時,該神父向她說:「姆姆,如果妳有足夠的信德,進一步恭敬耶穌聖心吧。」儒利. 雅貝略居然可以立即起來,再次走動自如。


1804年十月十五日,新創立「諾默聖母會」的修女們,一起發第一次聖願,儒利. 雅貝略被選為會長。


聖儒利. 雅貝略常說道:「好天主真是那麼好!」


瑪利亞. 達蓮.巴斯德






















20130506 Martyrs died with courage 英勇殉道

The Catholic Church in France suffered greatly in the eighteenth century. During the French Revolution, the worship of God was forbidden, Sunday and holy days were abolished. An evil woman was placed on the altar of the Cathedral of Notre Dame and worshiped by the mob as the “goddess of reason”.

In 1790, all religious houses were suppressed. Clergy were required to take the constitutional oath which upheld ideas contrary to Christian principles and subjected the authority of the Church completely to civil structures. Those who refused to take the oath were persecuted with banishment and martyrdom.

September Martyrs

            In 1792, there was great fear of rebellion and foreign invasion that the municipalities were authorized to arrest all suspects, including priests who had refused to take the constitutional oath. On September 2, there was rumor that the prisoners were planning an uprising. Mobs stormed the jails and killed more than a thousand prisoners. The priests were asked whether they had taken the constitutional oath. If they said “no”, they were killed on the spot. It is believed that not a single priest saved his life by a lie. The martyrs were beatified by Pope Pius XI on October 17, 1926.

Carmelites Martyrs

            In 1789 the National Assembly in France decreed that all Church lands would become property of the state and in 1790 all religious houses were suppressed.

Sixteen Carmelite nuns of Compiegne were divided into four groups and were able to carry on something of their way of life. In 1794, they were accused of living in a religious community and were arrested on June 22. They were confined in a Visitation convent in Compiegne and openly resumed their religious life.

On July 12, the nuns were taken to Paris. They were sentenced to death on July 17. During their trial, the prosecutor accused the Carmelites of being fanatics and counter-revolutionaries, Mother Henriette de Jesus asked him to explain the meaning of those words. The irritated judge vomited a torrent of offenses against her, and then said: “It is your attachment to your Religion and the King.”  Mother Henriette replied, “I thank you for the explanation.” Then, addressing her companions, she said: “My dear Mother and my Sisters, we must rejoice and give thanks to God for we die for our Religion, our Faith, and for being members of the Holy Roman Catholic Church.”

When a person offered a glass of water to one of the nuns, Mother Henriette told her, “In Heaven, my Sister, in Heaven we will soon have water aplenty to drink.”

Before their execution the nuns knelt and chanted the “Veni Creator” and renewed aloud their baptismal and religious vows. As each nun mounted the scaffold she sang the short psalm 117, “Praise the Lord all you nations.”

The Carmelite martyrs of Compiegne were beatified by Pope Pius X in 1906.

Noel Pinot

            Blessed Noel Pinot was born at Angers in 1747. As a priest, he served the sick with remarkable zeal and revitalized his parish spiritually through piety and preaching.

Refusing to take the constitutional oath, Father Pinot was sentenced to be deprived of his parish for two years. However, he continued his ministry in secret.

One day, while fully vested for Mass, Father Pinot was captured, dragged through the streets, and was put in prison.  He was sentenced to death for refusing to take the oath.

Father Pinot went to the guillotine still vested for Mass saying: “I will go to the altar of God, to God who gives joy to my youth.”          

He was martyred on February 21, 1794, and was beatified in 1926.



























諾厄. 屏瑙