Posted in NOTES to Followers

Today is #GivingTuesday – “Grow with me” – 3 December

Today is #GivingTuesday – “Grow with me” – 3 December

a day when people all over the world
financially support their favourite nonprofit causes.

Your donation will help Breathing Catholic to keep going!

If you’ve been impacted by this little apostolate, please consider making a donation.

I rely on your support to sustain this mission of evangelisation, “Grow with Me” in faith, knowledge and love and thus truly begin “Breathing Catholic.”

Holy Mass is offered for all those who assist.

May the good Lord bless and keep us all!

APPEAL # GIVING TUESDAY 3 dec 2019.jpg



Novena in Preparation for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception Day Three – 3 December

Novena in Preparation for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception
Day Three – 3 December

By St Maximillian Kolbe OFM (1894-1941) Martyr


How fair you are, 0 Mary!
The original stain is not in you.
You are the boast of Jerusalem,
You are the joy of Israel.
You are the pride of our people.
You are the advocate of sinners.
0 Mary!
You are the wisest of virgins.
You are the kindest of mothers.
Pray for us.
Intercede for us with our Lord Jesus Christ.
Holy Virgin, you were spotless
from the very moment of your conception.
Because you bore His Son, pray to the Father for us.
Through the spotless conception of the Virgin, 0 God,
You made ready a dwelling place worthy of Your Son.
In anticipation of Your Son’s death,
You preserved her from every stain.
Please purify us by her intercession,
so that we might find our way to You.
We ask this through Christ our lord.

Daily Readings and Meditations for each day of the Novena are given here, followed by two closing Novena Prayers for each day.

Day 3:  The Immaculata’s Place in God’s Plan of Creation and Salvationday 3 imm conception novena 3 dec 2019.jpg

The Immaculata appears in this world, without the least stain of sin, the masterpiece of God’s hands, full of grace.   God, the most Holy Trinity, beholds the lowliness (i.e., the humility, the root of all her other virtues) of His handmaid and “does great things” for her (cf. Lk 1:49).   God the Father gives her, His own Son to be her Son, God the Son descends into her womb and God the Holy Spirit forms the Body of Christ in the womb of this most pure virgin.   “And the Word was made flesh” (Jn 1:14).   The Immaculata becomes the Mother of God.

The fruit of the love of God in His Trinitarian life and of Mary the Immaculata, is Christ, the God-man.   Henceforth, all the other sons of God must be modelled after this first Son of God, the God-man, the infinite One.   They must reproduce His traits, by imitating Christ, souls reach sanctity. . . .   This is the union brought about by the spousal love of the soul for Christ, through its resemblance to Him and by God’s action.

But if anyone does not wish to have Mary Immaculate for his Mother, he will not have Christ for his Brother. . . . Since the firstborn Son, the God-man was conceived only with the specific consent of the most Blessed Virgin, the same must hold true for all men, who must be conformed to their first model in all things (“Sketches for a book,” 1940).

From all eternity, God has designed a unique plan for each one of us, no two being identical.   His ultimate aim, is that we all be fully united to the Lord.   May the Immaculata, from her unique position in God’s plan, foster our growing conformity to Christ.

Closing prayers:

Novena Prayer to the Immaculata

I greet you, ever-blessed Virgin,
Mother of God throne of grace,
miracle of almighty power!
I greet you, sanctuary of the most Holy Trinity
and Queen of the universe,
Mother of mercy and refuge of sinners!
Most loving Mother,
attracted by your beauty and sweetness
and by your tender compassion,
I confidently turn to you
and beg of you, to obtain for me of your dear Son
the favour I request in this novena
………………………… (here mention you request).
Obtain for me also, Queen of Heaven,
the most lively contrition for my many sins
and the grace to imitate closely,
those virtues which you practised so faithfully,
especially humility, purity and obedience.
Above all I beg you to be my mother
and protectress,
to receive me into the number of your devoted children
and to guide me from your high throne of glory.
Do not reject my petitions, Mother of mercy!
Have pity on me and do not abandon me
during life or at the moment of my death.

Daughter of the Eternal Father,
Mother of the Eternal Son,
Spouse of the Holy Spirit,
Temple of the adorable Trinity,
pray for me.
Immaculate and tender Heart of Mary,
refuge of the needy and hope of sinners,
filled with the most lively respect, love and gratitude,
I devote myself forever to your service
and I offer you my heart,
with all that I am and all that belongs to me.
Accept this offering,
sweet Queen of Heaven and earth
and obtain for me of your dear Son, Jesus Christ,
the favours I ask through your intercession in this novena.
Obtain for me also a tender, generous, constant love of God,
perfect submission to His adorable will,
the true spirit of a Christian
and the grace of final perseverance.

Closing Prayer of Identification with the Immaculata

O Immaculate Conception, Mary, my Mother,
live in me, act in me, speak in and through me.
Think your thoughts in my mind,
love through my heart.
Give me your own dispositions and feelings.
Teach, lead and guide me to Jesus.
Correct, enlighten and expand my entire personality and life.
Replace me with yourself.
Incline me to constant adoration and thanksgiving,
pray in and through me.
Let me live in you
and keep me in this union always.


Thought for the Day – 3 December – Woe to Me if I do not Preach the Gospel

Thought for the Day – 3 December – Tuesday of the First week of Advent, Year A and The Memorial of St Francis Xavier SJ (1506-1552)

Woe to Me if I do not Preach the Gospel

Saint Francis Xavier (1506-1552)
Priest and Missionary

An excerpt from Letters to Saint Ignatius

“We have visited the villages of the new converts who accepted the Christian religion a few years ago.   No Portuguese live here—the country is so utterly barren and poor.   The native Christians have no priests.   They know only that they are Christians.   There is nobody to say Mass for them, nobody to teach them the Creed, the Our Father, the Hail Mary and the Commandments of God’s Law.

I have not stopped since the day I arrived.   I conscientiously made the rounds of the villages.   I bathed in the sacred waters all the children who had not yet been baptised. This means that I have purified a very large number of children so young that, as the saying goes, they could not tell their right hand from their left.   The older children would not let me say my Office or eat or sleep until I taught them one prayer or another. Then I began to understand – the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.

I could not refuse so devout a request, without failing in devotion myself.   I taught them, first the confession of faith in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, then the Apostles’ Creed, the Our Father and Hail Mary.   I noticed among them persons of great intelligence.   If only someone could educate them in the Christian way of life, I have no doubt, that they would make excellent Christians.

Many, many people hereabouts, are not becoming Christians for one reason only – there is nobody to make them Christians.   Again and again, I have thought of going round the universities of Europe, especially Paris and everywhere crying out like a madman, riveting the attention of those with more learning than charity – “What a tragedy, how many souls are being shut out of heaven and falling into hell, thanks to you!”what a tragedy how many souls - st francis xavier - 3 dec 2019.jpg

I wish they would work as hard at this as they do at their books and so settle their account with God, for their learning and the talents entrusted to them.

This thought would certainly stir most of them to meditate on spiritual realities, to listen actively to what God is saying to them.   They would forget their own desires, their human affairs and give themselves over entirely to God’s will and His choice.   They would cry out with all their heart – Lord, I am here!   What do you want me to do?   Send me anywhere you like—even to India.”

How can we too fail!

It is Advent. All our answers remain fragmentary.
The first thing we have to accept is, ever and again,
the reality of an enduring Advent.
If we do that, we shall begin to realise
that the borderline between “before Christ” and “after Christ”
does not run through historical time, in an outward sense
and cannot be drawn on any map,
it runs through our own hearts.
Insofar, as we are living on a basis of selfishness, of egoism,
then even today, we are “before Christ.”
But in this time of Advent, let us ask the Lord to grant
that we may live less and less “before Christ”
and certainly not “after Christ”
but truly “with Christ and in Christ” –
with Him who is indeed Christ yesterday, today and forever.

Joseph Ratzinger (1964)
aka Pope Emeritus Benedict XVIit is advent - all our answers remain - joseph ratzinger - pope benedict 3 dec 2019.jpg


Quote/s of the Day – 3 December – St Francis Xavier

Quote/s of the Day – 3 December – The Memorial of St Francis Xavier SJ (1506-1552)

“Leave your country, your people
and your father’s household
and go to the land I will show you.”

Genesis 12:1

genesis 12 1 - leave your country your people - st francis xavier 3 dec 2019.jpg

“I am in a country
where all the niceties of life are lacking.
But I am filled with many inner consolations.
Indeed, I run the risk of crying my eyes out
because of my tears of joy”

i am in a country - st francis xavier 3 dec 2019.jpg

“When trying to evangelise,
no tool is more effective,
than that of personal witness.
…People can argue with points of doctrine
but no-one can argue,
with a personal testimony!”


“Prayer is powerful!
It fills the earth with mercy,
it makes the Divine clemency
pass from generation to generation,
right along the course of the centuries.
wonderful works have been achieved.
through prayer.”

St Francis Xavier SJ (1506-1552)



Advent Reflection – 3 December – Proclaiming the Hope of Christ

Advent Reflection – 3 December – Tuesday of the First week of Advent, Year A and the Memorial of St Francis Xavier SJ (1506-1552)- Readings: Isaiah 11:1-10, Psalm 72:1-2, 7-9, 12-13, Luke 10:21-24

“There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse
and a branch shall grow out of his roots.”
Isaiah 11:6

“In these passages, the meaning of Christmas shines through – God fulfils the promise by becoming man, not abandoning His people, He draws near to the point of stripping Himself of His divinity.   In this way God shows His fidelity and inaugurates a new Kingdom, which gives a new hope to mankind.   And what is this hope?   Eternal life. ”
... Pope Francis – General audience 21 December 2016Tuesday of the first week of advent - 3 dec 2019.jpg

Advent Action
Advent is a time to practice discipleship and the joy of sharing the message given to us! Today, share just a little of this joy of the Gospel and the hope of Christ, with those around you.   Giving this gift is immense, as the Lord shared His Father in the Gospel of today, so we share Him.   Spiritual love is tender, it is holy ground.   There is simply no greater investment.

” …. Paul does not seek himself, he does not want to make a fan club for himself, he does not wish to go down in history as the head of a school of great knowledge, he is not self-seeking, rather, St Paul proclaims Christ and wants to gain people for the true and real God.   Paul’s wish is to speak of and preach the One who entered his life and who is true life, who won him over on the road to Damascus.
Therefore, talking about God means making room for the One who enables us to know Him, who reveals His face of love to us; it means emptying ourselves of our own ego, offering it to Christ, in the awareness that it is not we who can win over others for God but, that we must expect God to send them, we must entreat God for them.
Talking about God, therefore, stems from listening, from our knowledge of God which is brought about through familiarity with Him, through the life of prayer and in accordance with the Commandments.”Pope Benedict XVI (Excerpt – How to speak about God – The Year of Faith – 28 November 2012)

Lord, it is my hope that I may always be in “Your will
and way.”
Sometimes I am selfish with my time and my own desires.
Today, help me sort out things in my life.
I need to make You the first priority in my life
and not the things that really do not matter.
Assist me in conducting myself in ways that are most pleasing to You.
Lord, it is my desire to live more for You this day
and share the joy of Your love with all I meet.

And today, we remember St Francis Xavier, the “second Paul”

please pray for us!
Amenst francis xavier pray for us 3 dec 2019.jpg


Our Morning Offering – 3 December – I Love Thee, God, I love Thee

Our Morning Offering – 3 December – The Memorial of St Francis Xavier SJ (1506-1552)

I Love Thee, God, I love Thee
By St Francis Xavier
Translated by Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ (1844-1889)

I love Thee, God, I love Thee—
Not out of hope for heaven for me
Nor fearing not to love and be
In the everlasting burning.
Thou, my Jesus, after me
Didst reach Thine arms out dying,
For my sake suffered nails and lance,
Mocked and marred countenance,
Sorrows passing number,
Sweat and care and cumber,
Yea and death and this for me,
And Thou could see me sinning.
Then I, why should not I love Thee,
Jesu so much in love with me?
Not for heaven’s sake, not to be
Out of hell by loving Thee,
Not for any gains I see,
But just the way that Thou didst me
I do love and will love Thee.
What must I love Thee, Lord, for then?
For being my king and God.
Ameno love thee god i love thee - st francis xavier - 3 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 3 December – Blessed Johann Nepomuk von Tschiderer (1777-1860)

Saint of the Day – 3 December – Blessed Johann Nepomuk von Tschiderer zu Gleifheim (1777-1860) Bishop of Trent from 1834 until his death, Professor, Apostle of Charity, Reformer, Founder of numerous schools, seminaries and churches, negotiator in peace settlements, Writer.   He was born to Austrians but was considered to be an Austro-Italian as he was born in the Italian town of Bolzano.   He was born on 15 April 1777 as Johann Nepomuk von Tschiderer zu Gleifheim in Bolzano, diocese of Trent, Italy and died on 3 December 1860 at Trent, Italy of natural causes.BL JOHANN NEPOMUK VON TSCHIDERER SNIP.JPG

Johann Nepomuk von Tschiderer zu Gleifheim was born as the fifth of seven males to Joseph Joachim von Tschiderer zu Gleifheim and Caterina de Giovanelli.   His parents emigrated from the Grisons close to the Italian border in 1529 as the Emperor Ferdinand III had given the Tschiderer family a paten,t making them nobles in 1620.    He was baptised moments after his birth at the Assumption church.

He received his education from the Order of Friars Minor in 1786 after completing his initial education and resided with his maternal grandfather.   He relocated to Innsbruck with his parents in Austria in 1792 and underwent theological and philosophical studies at the Seminary there.   He was elevated to the Diaconate on 24 June 1800 and later received his Ordination to the Priesthood on 27 July 1800.   Tschiderer celebrated his first Mass at San Antonio di Padua church at Collalbo.

From 1800 to 1802 he spent time as an assistant priest and then travelled to Rome for further studies and a pilgrimage where he was named as an Apostolic Nuncio.   He met the new Pope Pius VII several times during the course of 1802.   He later returned and assumed pastoral work once more in the German part of Trent and was made a Professor of moral and pastoral theological studies there.   In 1810 he became the parish priest at Sarentino – where he opened a small school – and then as the new parish priest at Merano.

On 26 October 1826 the Bishop Luschin appointed him as the Cathedral Canon and then on 26 December 1827 pro-vicar at Trent.   On 24 February 1832 the Bishop Galura from Brixen selected him as Titular Bishop of Heliopolis – which received papal confirmation – and then as the Vicar-General for Vorarlberg while also being named as an Auxiliary Bishop of Brixen at the same time.   He received his Episcopal Consecration on 20 May 1832 in a Servite church.    In 1834 the Emperor Francis I nominated him as the new Bishop of Trent, which the Holy Father confirmed.509pxbl -Johann_Nepomuk_von_Tschiderer

He spent his Episcopate writing and preaching as well as teaching catechism.   He devoted a considerable part of his revenues to the building and restoration of over 60 churches and to the purchase of books for the parsonages and chaplains’ houses.   He used the third centennial of the opening of the Council of Trent to promote religious revival through popular pastoral initiatives.

His charitable outreach to the poor and the sick was carried so far that he was often left without much himself.   He left his residence to the institution for the deaf and dumb at Trent and to the educational institute for seminarians that he had founded and was later named after him as the “Joanneum”.   Tschiderer tended to the victims of cholera epidemics in 1836 and in 1855 as well as to those affected in a war in 1859.

He intervened to prevent the 20 March 1848 uprising becoming a bloodbath and was hailed as a hero.   He tried to appeal to the Austrian forces to spare the lives of 21 members of the Franco-Italian forces who were captured but was denied, so provided religious assistance and a solemn burial for them after their executions.   Tschiderer ordained as a priest Saint Daniel Comboni in 1854.   He promoted the Redemptorists and Jesuits in the region.

Tschiderer planned a pilgrimage to Rome in 1854 to commemorate the dogma of the Immaculate Conception but his ill health prevented him from doing so.   He died during the evening of 3 December 1860 after suffering high fevers and being bedridden while also suffering from a heart ailment since 1859.   He received the Anointing of the Sick prior to his death and received a papal blessing from Pope Pius IX.

St Pope John Paul II Beatified him in Trent on 30 April 1995 before 100 000 people.   The cause started in 1886 under Pope Leo XIII and St Pope Paul VI titled him as Venerable in 1968.   The Beatification miracles include the healing of blindness of a 4-year-old in 1867 and the 1871 cure of a young priest who was on his death-bed with tuberculosis.

Posted in JESUIT SJ, SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 3 December

St Francis Xavier SJ (1506-1552) (Memorial)

One of the Greatest Missionaries since St Paul:

St Abbo of Auxerre
St Abran
St Agapius
St Agricola of Pannonia
St Alvaro González López
St Anthemius of Poitiers
St Attalia of Strasbourg
Bl Bernard of Toulouse
St Birinus of Dorchester
St Cassian of Tangiers
St Claudius of Africa
St Claudius the Martyr
St Crispin of Africa
St Edward Coleman
St Eloque of Lagny
St Emma of Bremen
St Ethernan
St Francisco Delgado González
St Francisco Fernández Escosura
St Hilaria the Martyr
St Jason the Martyr
Bl Johann Nepomuk von Tschiderer (1777-1860)
St John of Africa
St Juan Bautista Ferris Llopis
St Julián Heredia Zubia
St Lucius
St Lucy the Chaste
St Magina of Africa
St Mamas
St Manuel Santiago y Santiago
St Marcos García Rodríguez
St Maurus the Martyr
St Seleucus
St Stephen of Africa
St Theodore of Alexandria
St Theodulus of Edessa
St Valeriano Rodríguez García
St Veranus
Zephaniah the Prophet

Martyrs of Nicomedia: Christians martyred together in the persecutions of Diocletian – Ambicus, Julius and Victor. c 303 in Nicomedia, Bithynia (modern Izmit, Turkey).

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War: Thousands of people were murdered in the anti-Catholic persecutions of the Spanish Civil War from 1934 to 1939.
• Blessed Alvaro González López
• Blessed Francisco Delgado González
• Blessed Francisco Fernández Escosura
• Blessed Juan Bautista Ferris Llopis
• Blessed Julián Heredia Zubia
• Blessed Manuel Santiago y Santiago
• Blessed Marcos García Rodríguez
• Blessed Valeriano Rodríguez García