Today is the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus!
Today is the Feast Day of St. Joseph. Two feast days are celebrated for St. Joseph – March 19th for St. Joseph the Husband of Mary, and May 1st for St. Joseph the Worker.
St. Joseph is the patron of many things, including the Universal Church, fathers, the dying and workers. He lived a largely hidden life with Jesus and Mary, and provided for them through his work of carpentry. He was chosen by the eternal Father as the trustworthy guardian and protector of His greatest treasures – Jesus and Mary.
Dear St. Joseph, pray for us. ❤
Today is the Feast of the Holy Innocents, also called Childermas, or Innocents’ Day, which is celebrated in the Christian churches in the West on December 28 and in the Eastern churches on December 29. This Feast commemorates the massacre of the children by King Herod in his attempt to kill the infant Jesus (Matthew 2:16–18).
Today the Church remembers the Holy Innocents, the male children executed because of Herod’s fury to find the Christ child. Herod, fearing for his throne after the Magi told him of the birth of Jesus, ordered the massacre of all Bethlehem boys age two and under hoping that Jesus would be among those killed (Matthew 2:1-18). According to Matthew, this fulfilled a prophecy of Jeremiah 31:15:
“A voice was heard in Ramah, sobbing and loud lamentation; Rachel weeping for her children, and she would not be consoled, since they were no more.”
As we celebrate this feast, we should recall that the slaughter of innocents that goes on today. Abortion is a barbaric practice which kills innocent babies in the womb. It is a good time to re-double our efforts to pray for an end to abortion. Please lift up your prayers for these babies, and for all expectant parents and their unborn children.
Between May and October 1917, Our Lady appeared six times to three young Portuguese children in a field called the Cova de Iria, near the small village of Fatima, about seventy miles north of Lisbon. The children who received the apparitions had been brought up in an atmosphere of piety. They were Lucia dos Santos, aged ten, and her two younger cousins Francisco and Jacinta. They tended sheep together and often would kneel in the open field to pray the Rosary.
The first apparition took place around noon on Sunday, May 13, 1917 when a brilliant flash of lightning drew the attention of the children. A beautiful Lady appeared clothed in white and asked the children to return the thirteenth of each month. In these apparitions, Mary asked the children to pray the Rosary daily for the conversion of sinners and asked for devotion to her Immaculate Heart. She asked for prayer, penance and the consecration of Russia to her Immaculate Heart. She also spoke of observing the first Saturdays of each month by going to confession and receiving Holy Communion to make reparation to the Hearts of Jesus and Mary.
On the day of the final apparition, October 13, 1917, she identified herself as “Our Lady of the Rosary” and the dramatic episode of the dance of the sun took place, witnessed by a crowd of seventy-thousand people, in which the sun seemed to tumble from the sky. After a lengthy diocesan inquiry, a declaration of the Bishop of Leiria, in whose diocese these apparitions occurred, approved the devotion to Our Lady of Fatima in 1930. The young visionary Francisco had died on April 4, 1919 and his sister Jacinta on February 20, 1920. The sole survivor, Sister Lucia, lived many years as a professed Carmelite nun, before her death on February 13, 2005.
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.
In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ I will begin this day.
O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer You my prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of Your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, in reparation for my sins, for the intentions of all my relatives and friends, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father. Amen.