News from San Antonio Church – June 2, 2024

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Weekly Bulletin June 2, 2024

by Terrie Evans

Today is the final day for the Cincitalia Fest at Harvest Home Park which opens at 1:00Pm and closes at 9:00 PM.  Our Blessed Mother Statue will be the centerpiece of the St. Catherine’s Marian Procession with their 1st Communicants leading the devotion to Mary.  Our San Antonio Church Community will be manning the Bruschetta Booth for the last day of the fest.  We appreciate Harry Panaro for giving up his weekend to support our church for this fundraiser.  

On this Sunday, we celebrate the Feast of Corpus Christi, the Christian liturgical celebration to honor the real presence of the Body and Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus within the elements of the Eucharist.  Also known as the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, it is observed by the Latin, Western Orthodox, Lutheran and Anglican Churches.  The feast was proposed to Pope Urban IV by Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church due to the Eucharist Miracle of Bolsena.  The Pontiff then established the Feast of Corpus Christi as a Solemnity which was then extended to the whole Roman Catholic Church.  When Mass has ended, there are processions with the Blessed Sacrament that are usually displayed in a Monstrance followed by the Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.  Every year in Rome, the Pope will preside over a procession that begins at the Archbasilica of St. John Lateran, on the way to the Basilica of Saint Mary Major for the Benediction.  To honor this feast, many of the faithful will adorn their doors, windows, gardens, and fields with Corpus Christi Wreaths.  In the Roman Catholic Church, the Feast of Corpus Christi is one of five occasions in the year which Diocesan Bishops are not to be away from their Diocese.

On Monday, June 3rd, we remember St. Charles Lwanga, born in Uganda, Africa, martyred at age 26 along with 12 Catholics, and 11 Anglicans for refusing to renounce their faith.  In Uganda, it was during the reign of King Mwanga, a violent ruler with evil ways who lived a life of debauchery who distrusted foreign visitors.  The King was fearful he would be reported to the British Government as they had given him his power.  The King discovered that a 14-year-old page had been receiving instruction on becoming a Catholic and then he ordered that every Catholic and Protestant living in the royal enclosure be put to death.  As they were burned to death, the martyrs prayed; “You can burn our bodies, but you cannot burn our souls.”  St. Charles Lwanga was Beatified by Pope Benedict XV in 1920 and Canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1964 and is the Patron saint of Acra, Ghana.  A Prayer for Martyrs of Uganda: “Pray for the faith where there is danger and for Christians who must suffer because of their faith.  Give the same courage, zeal, and joy you showed.  And help those of us who live in a place where Christianity is accepted to remain aware of the persecutions in other parts of the world.  AMEN.”

On Tuesday, June 5th, we celebrate the life of St. Boniface, born in 680 in Devonshire, England and educated in the Benedictine Monastery in Exeter.  He became a missionary during the reign of Pope Gregory who made him a regional Bishop in Germany where he worked to organize the Church in Germany.  In 735, Boniface along with his disciple Sturmius founded the Monastery in Fulda, which is now famous.   By 745, he was working to establish a number of dioceses, correct abuses and build religious houses.  In 747, the Pope named him supreme Bishop of Germany and later the Papal Legate to Gaul.  Boniface wrote to fellow churchmen all over Western Europe, including three popes and his close friends in England about subjects concerning church reform, or questions about liturgical or doctrinal matters.  He helped shape the later Church in Europe with the dioceses he helped found that are today still remaining.   Boniface was killed in 755 by people he was working to convert, the bandits that took his life were looking for gold.  After his death, it was not until the 1,050th Anniversary of Boniface’s death in the year 1805 that the celebrations in Germany became widespread Catholic events.  Around 1905, Protestants began to celebrate the importance of Boniface in Germany.  Celebrations became international affairs throughout England, Germany, and the Netherlands in 1954.  In 1980 when Pope John Paul II visited Germany, he celebrated mass outside the Cathedral and in front of a crowd of 100,000; the Pope hailed the role of Boniface for German Christianity saying; “The Holy Boniface, bishop and martyr, signifies the beginning of the gospel and the church in your country.”  St Boniface is known as the Apostle to the Germans and also the patron of Germany.    St. Boniface Church on Chase Avenue in Northside celebrated their 150th Anniversary in 2013.   A prayer to St. Boniface: “O lord, let St. Boniface intercede for us, that we may firmly adhere to the Faith he taught, and for which he shed his blood, and fearlessly profess it in our works.  Amen.” 

On Thursday, June 6th we the Catholic Church honors St. Norbert of Xanten, the son of a Count who was known to exploit the Church for his own profit.  He had a conversion when he heard the commands of his Lord when Jesus said, “Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.   When he was ordained as a deacon and while he was preaching, he was still practicing the pleasurable and luxurious life that he did not want to give up.   The Council of Fritzlar denounced Norbert as a hypocrite but it was not until he had a brush with death when the horse, he was ridings threw him due to a lightning strike.  He traveled on foot to have an audience with Pope Gelasius II to plead his case.  He begged to continue preaching and the Pope granted Norbert permission to preach wherever he wished throughout France.  Norbert gave his possessions to the poor, settled in the French region of Aisne, and soon became the most famous missionary of his time.  In 1120, Norbert and 13 followers formed the first group of Monks known as Premonstratensians Canons, The third Order of St. Norbert.  His order became popular, and it was invited into dioceses throughout Northern Europe.   

On Friday, June 7th the Catholic Church honors the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, celebrated for the first time in 1672 by a priest from Normandy, Father Giovanni Eudes to be a symbol of the love of Christ for the human race.  St. Maragret Mary Alacoque promoted the devotion when she had visions of the Sacred Heart between 1673 and 1675 and the 12 promises to those devoted to the Sacred Heart of Jesus by her communication with Christ.  The 12 promises revealed to St. Mary Alacoque in a private revelation:  1) All graces necessary to their state of life; 2) Peace in their homes; 3) Comfort in all afflictions; 4) Secure refuge in life and death; 5) Abundant blessings in all their undertakings 6) Infinite mercy for sins; 7) Tepid souls turned fervent; 8) Fervent souls mounting in perfection; 9) Blessings everywhere a picture or image is honored; 10) Gift to priests of touching the most hardened hearts; 11) Promoters names written in His heart; 12) The grace of final penitence to those who receive Holy Communion on 9 Consecutive First Fridays.  A Prayer: “Divine Heart of Jesus, I offer you through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Mother of the Church, a union with the Eucharistic Sacrifice, my prayers, actions, joys, and sufferings on this day in reparation for sins and for the salvation of all people, in the grace of the Holy Spirit for the glory of the Heavenly Father.  AMEN.”  

On Saturday, June 8th we practice the veneration of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  This day refers to the life of Mary; what joys, sorrows, virtues, and imperfections she holds in her heart.  This feast shows her maternal love for her son Jesus Christ, and also the motherly love and compassion she has for all mankind.  Devotion to the Heart of Mary began in the Middle Ages with pious meditations on the Ave Maria and the Salve Regina by St. Gertrude the Great and St. Bridget of Sweden and by the early Christians who remembered the agony and sorrows the Blessed Mother experienced as she stood at the Cross watching the Crucifixion of her Divine Son.  In the history of the Church, Catholics have associated the 7 Dolors showing the sorrow and pain of the Mother of God who is often depicted with 7 swords to represent the 7 Sorrows piercing her sinless heart.  The 7 Dolors of the Blessed Virgin Mary are: 1) The Prophecy of Simeon, 2) The Flight into Egypt, 3) The Loss of Jesus for Three Days, 4) The Carrying of the Cross, 5) The Crucifixion of Jesus, 6) Jesus taken down from the Cross, and 7) Jesus Laid in the Tomb.  Pope Pius XII instituted the feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in 1944 and in 1969, Pope Paul VI moved the feast to the third Saturday after Pentecost to be strongly associated with the Sacred Heart of Jesus.  The Miraculous Medal displays   the Immaculate Heart of Mary pierced by a sword with the Sacred Heart of Jesus who also appears on the medal crowned with thorns.  A Prayer as Jesus was laid in the Tomb: “I grieve for you, O Mary most sorrowful, for the pangs that wrenched your most loving heart at the burial of Jesus.  Dear Mother, by your heart sunk in the bitterness of desolation, obtain for me the virtue of diligence and the gift of wisdom.  Let intercession be made for us, we beseech You, O Lord Jesus Christ, now and at the Hour of our death, before the throne of Your mercy, by the Blessed Virgin Mary, Your Mother, whose most holy soul was pierced by a sword of sorrow in the hour of Your bitter Passion.  Through You, O Jesus Christ, Savior of the World, Who with the Father and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns world without end.  Amen.”   Pope John Paul II made an act of entrustment of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary on October 8, 2000, for the new millennium.  On October 13, 2013, Pope Francis renewed the consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary with a celebration in Rome as part of the Marian Day celebration.

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