Posted in MORNING Prayers, NOVENAS

ANNOUNCING A NOVENA in Honour of the Transfiguration of our Lord

in Honour of
the Transfiguration of our Lord


The Revelation of Christ’s Divine Glory

The feast of the Transfiguration of Our Lord Jesus Christ celebrates the revelation of Christ’s divine glory on Mount Tabor in Galilee (Matthew 17:1-6; Mark 9:1-8; Luke 9:28-36).   After revealing to His disciples that He would be put to death in Jerusalem (Matthew 16:21), Christ, along with Saints Peter, James, and John, went up the mountain. There, Saint Matthew writes, “he was transfigured before them.

And his face did shine as the sun: and his garments became white as snow.”

Date: 6 August

The brightness with which He shone on Mount Tabor was not something added to Christ but the manifestation of His true divine nature and a forecast of His Resurrection.   For Peter, James and John, it was also a glimpse of the glories of Heaven and of the resurrected body promised to all Christians.

When Christ was transfigured, two others appeared with Him:  Moses, representing the Old Testament Law, and Elijah, representing the prophets. Thus Christ, Who stood between the two and spoke with them, appeared to the disciples as the fulfillment of both the Law and the prophets.

At Christ’s baptism in the Jordan, the voice of God the Father was heard to proclaim that “This is my beloved Son” (Matthew 3:17). During the Transfiguration, God the Father pronounced the same words (Matthew 17:5).

Despite the importance of this event, the Feast of the Transfiguration was not among the earliest of feasts celebrated by Christians.   It was first celebrated in Asia starting in the fourth or fifth century and spread throughout the Christian East in the centuries following.   The Catholic Encyclopedia notes that it wasn’t commonly celebrated in the West until the tenth century. Pope Callixtus III elevated the Transfiguration to a feast of the universal Church and established August 6 as the date of its celebration.

The Novena is often prayed as a Community after Benediction for 9 days, however, if our parish is not offering this Novena, we too can pray it on our own, to assist in preparing for this great revelation of our Lord and to help us obtain the great realisation and joy which Peter, James and John experienced.

Let us Pray!

ANNOUNCING A NOVENA in honour of the Transifiguration of our lord

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 25 July – St Christopher – Memorial today 25 July

Thought for the Day – 25 July – St Christopher – Memorial today 25 July

St Christopher, one of the “Fourteen Holy Helpers,” has been highly venerated since ancient times in both the Eastern and Western Churches.   The older martyrologies say that he suffered death for Christ;  in more recent centuries piety has woven garlands of legend about his name.   Christopher has become a giant who wished to enter the service of the most powerful of lords.   He first thought that the emperor qualified;  later he selected the devil and finally he discovered Christ to be the most powerful Sovereign over all the world.  From then on he served Him with greatest fidelity.

Because Christopher was of giant stature, he practiced charity by carrying pilgrims across a certain river.   Once a child asked to be taken across.   He complied as usual. While carrying the child on his shoulders through the river, it became heavier and heavier and finally he could hardly support it.   Then the revelation was made:  “You are carrying the Lord of the world!” It was Christ (Christopher means “Christ-carrier”).

In all of us, our water is turned into wine when we get close to Jesus Christ!

The legend has the nature of a symbol. Bishop Vida gives the following exposition: “Because you, O Christopher, always carried Christ in your heart, the artists place Christ on your shoulders.   Because you suffered much, they paint you standing deep in the waters.   And because you could not accomplish this without being large of stature, they have made you a giant, bigger than great temples;  therefore do you live under the open heavens during the greatest cold.   And since you conquered all that is difficult, they have given you a blossoming palm as traveling staff.”

Excerpted from The Church’s Year of Grace, Pius Parsch

Patronages: Archers; automobile drivers; automobilists; bachelors; boatmen; bus drivers;, cab drivers; floods; fruit dealers; fullers; hailstorms; holy death; lorry drivers; mariners; market carriers; motorists; porters; Rab, Croatia; sailors; storms; sudden death; taxi drivers; toothache; transportation; transportation workers; travellers; truck drivers; truckers; watermen.

Attributes: Giant; torrent; tree; man with Christ on his shoulders.

St Christopher, as you walked the earth during your life, come now, carry us and pray for us all!

st christopher - pray for us


One Minute Reflection – 25 July

One Minute Reflection – 25 July

Jesus said in reply, “You do not know what you are asking. Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?” They said to him, “We can.”……Matthew 20:28

matthew 20 28

REFLECTION – “…we can learn much from St James: promptness in accepting the Lord’s call even when He asks us to leave the “boat” of our human securities, enthusiasm in following Him on the paths that He indicates to us over and above any deceptive presumption of our own, readiness to witness to Him with courage, if necessary to the point of making the supreme sacrifice of life. Thus James the Greater stands before us as an eloquent example of generous adherence to Christ. He, who initially had requested, through his mother, to be seated with his brother next to the Master in His Kingdom, was precisely the first to drink the chalice of the passion and to share martyrdom with the Apostles.
And, in the end, summarising everything, we can say that the journey, not only exterior but above all interior, from the mount of the Transfiguration to the mount of the Agony, symbolises the entire pilgrimage of Christian life, among the persecutions of the world and the consolations of God, as the Second Vatican Council says. In following Jesus, like St James, we know that even in difficulties we are on the right path.”…..Pope Benedict XVI – General Audience, June 21, 2006

we can learn much from st james - pope benedict

PRAYER – Almighty ever-living God, who consecrated the first fruits of Your Apostles by the blood of Saint James, grant, we pray, that Your Church may be strengthened by his confession of faith and constantly sustained by his protection. 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. St James the Greater, Apostle of Christ, Pray for us! Amen

st james pray for us 25 july


Our Morning Offering – 25 July

Our Morning Offering – 25 July

Prayer for the Intercession of St James

O glorious Apostle, Saint James,
who by reason of your fervent
and generous heart
was chosen by Jesus to be witness
of His glory on Mount Tabor
and of His agony in Gethsemane;
you, whose very name is a symbol
of warfare and victory:
obtain for us strength and consolation
in the unending warfare of this life,
that, having constantly and generously followed Jesus,
we may be victors in the strife
and deserve to receive the victor’s crown in heaven.

Prayer for the Intercession of St James


Saint of the Day – 25 July – Feast of St James the Greater, Apostle of Christ

Saint of the Day – 25 July – Feast of St James the Greater, Apostle of Christ and Marytr – Also known as: James Major, James the Elder, James the More, James, son of Zebedee, Santiago de España, Son of Thunder, Iago, Santiago, the Moor Slayer.   Martyred – stabbed with a sword by King Herod Agrippa I in 44 at Jerusalem.   Tradition says his body was taken by Angels and sailed in a rudderless, unattended boat to Spain where a massive rock closed around it.   His relics are at at Compostela, Spain.  Patronages – against arthritis or rheumatism, apothecaries, druggists or pharmacists, blacksmiths, equestrians, horsemen, riders, furriers, knights, labourers, pilgrims, soldiers, tanners, veterinarians, Spanish conquistadors, Chile, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Spain, Archdiocese of Seattle, Washington, diocese of Bangued, Philippines, 20 cities.    St James was one of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus and traditionally considered the first Apostle to be Martyred.   He was a son of Zebedee and Salome and brother of John the Apostle.   He is also called James the Greater or James the Great to distinguish him from James, son of Alphaeus and James the brother of Jesus (James the Just).  James the son of Zebedee is the patron saint of Spaniards and as such is often identified as Santiago.
james and santiago de compostelajames the greater.BIG.6.- GUIDO RENI

His parents seem to have been people of means.   Zebedee, his father, was a fisherman of the Sea of Galilee, who probably lived in or near Bethsaida, present Galilee, Israel, perhaps in Capernaum and had some boatmen or hired men.   Salome, his mother, was one of the pious women who afterwards followed Christ and “ministered unto him of their substance” and his brother John was personally known to the high-priest and must have had wherewithal to provide for the Mother of Jesus.james the greater

It is probable that he and his brother had not received the technical training of the rabbinical schools;  in this sense they were unlearned and without any official position among the Jews.   But, according to the social rank of their parents, they must have been men of ordinary education, in the common walks of Jewish life.   James is described as one of the first disciples to join Jesus.   The Synoptic Gospels state that James and John were with their father by the seashore when Jesus called them to follow him.[Matt. 4:21-22][Mk. 1:19-20] James was one of only three Apostles whom Jesus selected to bear witness to his Transfiguration.

James and John asked Jesus to grant them seats on his right and left in his glory.   Jesus rebuked them and the other ten apostles were annoyed with them.   James and his brother wanted to call down fire on a Samaritan town but were rebuked by Jesus[Lk 9:51-6].   The Acts of the Apostles records that “Herod the king” (traditionally identified with Herod Agrippa) had James executed by sword.   He is the only apostle whose martyrdom is recorded in the New Testament.   He is, thus, traditionally believed to be the first of the twelve apostles martyred for his faith.[Acts 12:1-2]   Biblical scholars suggest that this may have been caused by James’ fiery temper, for which he and his brother earned the nickname Boanerges or “Sons of Thunder”

Saints John the Evangelist and James the Greater Martín Gómez the ElderChrist with sons of Zebedee James and John

Saint James is the Patron Saint of Spain and, according to legend, his remains are held in Santiago de Compostela in Galicia.   (The name Santiago is the local evolution of Vulgar Latin Sanctu Iacobu, “Saint James.”)   The traditional pilgrimage to the grave of the Saint, known as the “Way of St James,” has been the most popular pilgrimage for Western European Catholics from the Early Middle Ages onwards.   Some 237,886 pilgrims registered in 2014 as having completed the final 100 km walk (200 km by bicycle) to Santiago to qualify for a Compostela.   When 25 July falls on a Sunday, it is a “Jubilee” year (an Año Santo Jubilar Compostelano or Año Santo Jacobeo) and a special east door is opened for entrance into Santiago Cathedral.   Jubilee years fall every 5, 6, and 11 years.   In the 2004 Jubilee year, 179,944 pilgrims received a Compostela.    In 2010 the number had risen to 275,135.

Medieval “Santiago Matamoros” legend – tradition states that he miraculously appeared to fight for the Christian army during the legendary battle of Clavijo and was henceforth called Santiago MatamorosSaint James the Moor-slayer.   Cervantes has Don Quixote explaining that “the great knight of the russet cross was given by God to Spain as Patron and Protector.”

james moorslayer3.

james moorslayer


Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saints’ Memorials and Feast of St James the Greater, Apostle of Christ – 25 July

St James the Greater (Feast) – Son of Zebedee and Salome, brother of Saint John the Apostle. He is called “the Greater” simply because he became an Apostle before Saint James the Lesser.

Bl Alexius Worstius
Bl Antonio Lucci
Bl Antonio of Olmedo
St Bantu of Trier
St Beatus of Trier
St Christopher
St Cugat del Valles
Bl Darío Acosta Zurita
St Ebrulfus
St Euphrasia
St Fagildo of Santiago
St Felix of Furcona
St Florentius of Furcona
St Glodesind of Metz
St Magnericus of Trier
Bl Michel-Louis Brulard
Bl Mieczyslawa Kowalska
St Mordeyren
St Nissen of Wexford
St Olympiad of Constantinople
St Paul of Palestine
Bl Pietro Corradini of Mogliano
St Theodemir of Cordoba

Martyrs of Caesarea – 3 saints: Three Christians martyred together in the pesecutions of emperor Maximilian and governor Firmilian – Paul, Tea and Valentina. 309 in Caesarea, Palestine.

Martyrs of Cuncolim – 20 saints: On 15 July 1583 the group met at the church of Orlim, and hiked to Cuncolim to erect a cross and choose land for a new church. Local anti-Christian pagans, seeing the unarmed Christians, gathered their weapons and marched on them. One of the parishioners, a Portuguese emigre named Gonçalo Rodrigues, carried a firearm, but Father Alphonsus Pacheco stopped him from using it. The pagans then fell upon them, and killed them all without mercy. They were –
• Alphonsus Pacheco
• Alphonsus the altar boy
• Anthony Francis
• Dominic of Cuncolim
• Francis Aranha
• Francis Rodrigues
• Gonçalo Rodrigues
• Paul da Costa
• Peter Berno
• Rudolph Acquaviva
• ten other native Christian converts whose names have not come down to us
They were martyred on Monday 25 July 1583 at the village of Cuncolim, district of Salcete, territory of Goa, India. Beatified on 30 April 1893 by Pope Leo XIII.

Martyrs of Furci:

Martyrs of Motril – 5 beati: Four priests and a brother, all members of the Augustinian Recollects, who were martyred together in the Spanish Civil War:
• Deogracias Palacios del Río
• José Rada Royo
• José Ricardo Díez Rodríguez
• Julián Benigno Moreno y Moreno
• León Inchausti Minteguía
They were shot on 25 July 1936 in Motril, Granada, Spain and Beatified on 7 March 1999 by Pope John Paul II.

Martyrs of Toledo – 4 beati: Four brothers and a priest, all members of the Hospitallers of Saint John of God, and all martyred together in the Spanish Civil War.
• Carlos Rubio álvarez
• Eloy Francisco Felipe Delgado Pastor
• Jerónimo Ochoa Urdangarín
• Primo Martínez De San Vicente Castillo
25 July 1936 in Talavera de la Reina, Toledo, Spain. They were Beatified on 25 October 1992 by Pope John Paul II.

Martyrs of Urda – 3 beati: Three members of the Passionists who were martyred together in the Spanish Civil War.
• Benito Solana Ruiz
• Felix Ugalde Irurzun
• Pedro Largo Redondo
They were shot on 25 July 1936 in Urdá, Toledo, Spain and Beatified on 1 October 1989 by Pope John Paul II.

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War:
Antonio Varona Ortega
Bl Dionisio Pamplona-Polo
Enric Morante Chic
Higinio Roldán Iriberri
Jaume Balcells Grau
Jesús Eduard Massanet Flaquer
Jesús Juan Otero
José López Tascón
José Luis Palacio Muñiz
Josep Bardolet Compte
Josep Más Pujolrás
Juan Crespo Calleja
Bl Miquel Peiro Victori
Ricard Farré Masip
Santos López Martinez
Vicente Fernández Castrillo