The beloved Foster-Father and Guardian of Jesus and Protector of the Holy Family, is celebrated for this whole month and his Feast Day falls in the middle of it – 19 March – this year moved to the 20th as the 19th is Laetare Sunday, the Fourth Sunday of Lent.
“Quamquam Pluries” On the Devotion to St Joseph Pope Leo XIII
“On 10 March, [11 MARCH THIS YEAR], we begin the Novena to St Joseph, entrusting so many of our woes and cares to his holy and fatherly care and intercession. His Patronages are numerous, as we know, one of them will fit our needs perfectly and if not, then we should all ask him to intercede on our behalf for our families and for a Happy and Holy Death. On the 20th [FEAST normally 19th] we pray the Consecration to St Joseph.”
Patronages in Alphabetical Order:
of Accountants • Bursars • Cabinetmakers • Carpenters • Catholic Church • Cemetery Workers • Children • Civil Engineers • against Communism • Confectioners • Craftsmen • against Doubt and Hesitation • the Dying • Emigrants • Exiles • Expectant Mothers • Families • Fathers • Furniture Makers • Grave diggers • Happy Death • Holy Death • House Hunters • House Sellers • Immigrants • Joiners • Labourers • all the Legal Profession • Married Couples • Oblates of Saint Joseph • Orphans • Pioneers • Social Justice • Teachers • Travellers • the Unborn • Wheelwrights • Workers • Americas • Austria • Belgium • Bohemia • Canada • China • Croatian people • Korea • Mexico • New France • New World • Peru • Philippines • Vatican City • VietNam • Canadian Armed Forces • Papal States • 46 Diocese • 26 Cities,States and Regions.
Saint of the Day – 22 December – St Frances Xavier Cabrini (1850-1917) Virgin, Religious Sister, Missionary, Founder. Patronages – against malaria, emigrants, immigrants (given on 8 September 1950 by Pope Pius XII) hospital administrators, orphans.
St Frances Xavier Cabrini From the Roman Breviary
Frances Cabrini, who later took the name of Xavier because of her desire to imitate the Apostle of the Indies, was born in the Town of Sant’ Angelo in the Diocese of Lodi in 1850. Her parents were holy and respectable people. Aided by divine grace, she had attained, even as a child, to a very high degree of union with God and was already given to the practice of austerities. When she was seven years old, the custom of listening before evening prayers, to readings from a magazine concerning missionary work in China, filled her with an ardent desire to go there, in order to win souls for God. She was hardly thirteen years old, when she took a vow of perpetual Virginity. From that time, the all-absorbing thought of her soul was how to return love, for love ,to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and thus bring some consolation to Him, in His sufferings and distress.
After the successful completion of her studies she resolved to embrace the religious life. Twice she applied for admission and each time was refused, on the ground of poor health. She then taught for some years in the public school, with a considerable measure of success. Thereafter, she was appointed by the Bishop of Lodi, as the directress of an orphanage, in which position, she displayed such prudence and zeal, especially in the Christian education of girls that the same Bishop urged her to found a new religious congregation which would principally be devoted, to the missions.
She undertook this difficult assignment with great courage and in 1880, in the Chapel of our Lady of Grace at Codogno, laid the foundation of the Institute of the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart. She then sought from the Holy See, the approval of the Rules and Constitutions of the new Institute. This having been achieved, she laboured with all zeal, to imbue the new sisterhood with the same spirit of love of God and neighboir ,which she, herself had drawn, in copious draughts ,from the fountain of the Sacred Heart.
The expansion of this new religious family to include sixty-seven foundations in Europe and America, testifies to the extraordinary character and skill of its wise and saintly ruler. She had, moreover ,a mind to establish missions in more remote lands and being in doubt, concerning God’s will in the matter, she followed the advice of Pope Leo XIII and turned to the West.
It was to these western shores of both Americas, that large multitudes of Italians had emigrated, in order to find employment because they were unable to exist in their own land. The condition of the Italian immigrants was then very poor and Frances sought to alleviate it. It was the love of Christ that urged her to take up this work, so wholeheartedly and so courageously. No labour could overcome her, no danger could frighten her. Her intrepid and undaunted spirit braved the rough and dangerous voyages across the ocean, twenty-four times!
She travelled over the length and breadth of America, establishing everywhere, hospitals, schools, houses of rest, nurseries, orphanges and other institutions, in order to promote the material livelihood but above all the spiritual well-being of the working class. By such charitable endeavours, she won the hearts of her fellow-countrymen and so, came to be called the Mother of the Italians.
She exerted every effort to accomplish the work she had in mind and her zeal could brook no delay. Placing her complete confidence in Divine Providence, she took as her motto that saying of Paul: “I can do all things in Him Who strengtheneth me.”
Her heart was consecrated to God by a perpetual union with Him, so that even amid the most absorbing occupations, her mind never lost track of heavenly things. All she met with, on her various journeys, were like so many stepping-stones, by which her soul ascended to God.
She had the greatest veneration for the Roman Pontiff and the Apostolic See and saw in the laws of the Church, norms of conduct that give one the greatest sense of security. She cultivated a childlike love for the Blessed Virgin Mary and often used to say, that Mary was the Mother and Foundress of her Institute.
Finally her life, extraordinary by reason of its integrity and labours for God, came to an end at Chicago, on 22 December 1917. Later her body was translated to New York. She was solemnly Beatified by Pope Pius XI, whereas Pope Pius XII, after new miracles were performed, solemnly added her name to the list of holy Virgins.
“Inspired by the grace of God, we join the Saints in honouring the holy Virgin Frances Xavier Cabrini. She was a humble woman who became outstanding, not because she was famous or rich or powerful but because, she lived a virtuous life. From the tender years of her youth, she kept her innocence as white as a lily and preserved it carefully, with the thorns of penitence. As the years progressed, she was moved by a certain instinct and supernatural zeal, to dedicate her whole life to the service and greater glory of God. She welcomed delinquent youths into safe homes and taught them to live upright and holy lives. She consoled those who were in prison and recalled to them, the hope of eternal life. She encouraged prisoners to reform themselves and to live honest lives. She comforted the sick and the infirm in the hospitals and diligently cared for them. She extended a friendly and helping hand especially to immigrants and offered them necessary shelter and relief, for having left their homeland behind, they were wandering about in a foreign land with no place to turn for help. Because of their condition, she saw that they were in danger of deserting the practice of Christian virtues and their Catholic faith. Undoubtedly she accomplished all this through the faith which was always so vibrant and alive in her heart, through the divine love which burned within her and finally, through constant prayer, by which she was so closely united with God, from Whom she humbly asked and obtained, whatever her human weakness could not obtain. Although her constitution was very frail, her spirit was endowed with such singular strength that, knowing the will of God in her regard, she permitted nothing to impede her from accomplishing what seemed beyond her strength.”– From his sermon at the Canonisation of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini by Pope Pius XII.
Saint of the Day – 19 March – The Solemnity of St Joseph, Spouse of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God and Patron of the Universal Church. The name ‘Joseph’ means “whom the Lord adds”. Patronages • against doubt and hesitation • accountants • all the legal professions • bursars • cabinetmakers • carpenters • cemetery workers • children • civil engineers • confectioners • craftsmen • the dying • teachers • emigrants • exiles • expectant mothers • families • fathers • furniture makers • grave diggers • happy death • holy death • house hunters • immigrants • joiners • labourers • married couples • orphans • against Communism • pioneers • pregnant women • social justice • teachers • travellers • the unborn • wheelwrights • workers • workers • Catholic Church • Oblates of Saint Joseph • for protection of the Church • Universal Church • Vatican II • Americas • Austria • Belgium • Bohemia • Canada • China • Croatian people • Korea • Mexico • New France • New World • Peru • Philippines • Vatican City • VietNam • Canadian Armed Forces • Papal States • 46 dioceses • 26 cities • states and regions.
St Joseph is invoked as patron for many causes. He is the patron of the Universal Church. He is the patron of the dying because Jesus and Mary were at his death-bed. He is also the patron of fathers, of carpenters and of social justice. Many religious orders and communities are placed under his patronage.
St Joseph, the spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the foster-father of Jesus, was probably born in Bethlehem and probably died in Nazareth. His important mission in God’s plan of salvation was “to legally insert Jesus Christ into the line of David from whom, according to the prophets, the Messiah would be born, and to act as his father and guardian” (Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy). Most of our information about St. Joseph comes from the opening two chapters of St Matthew’s Gospel. No words of his are recorded in the Gospels; he was the “silent” man. We find no devotion to St Joseph in the early Church. It was the will of God that the Virgin Birth of Our Lord be first firmly impressed upon the minds of the faithful. He was later venerated by the great saints of the Middle Ages. Pius IX (1870) declared him patron and protector of the universal family of the Church.
St Joseph was an ordinary manual labourer although descended from the royal house of David. In the designs of Providence he was destined to become the spouse of the Mother of God. His high privilege is expressed in a single phrase, “Foster-father of Jesus.” About him Sacred Scripture has little more to say than that he was a just man-an expression which indicates how faithfully he fulfilled his high trust of protecting and guarding God’s greatest treasures upon earth, Jesus and Mary.
The darkest hours of his life may well have been those when he first learned of Mary’s pregnancy; but precisely in this time of trial Joseph showed himself great. His suffering, which likewise formed a part of the work of the redemption, was not without great providential import: Joseph was to be, for all times, the trustworthy witness of the Messiah’s virgin birth. After this, he modestly retires into the background of holy Scripture.
Of St Joseph’s death the Bible tells us nothing. There are indications, however, that he died before the beginning of Christ’s public life. His was the most beautiful death that one could have, in the arms of Jesus and Mary. Humbly and unknown, he passed his years at Nazareth, silent and almost forgotten he remained in the background through centuries of Church history. Only in more recent times has he been accorded greater honour. Liturgical veneration of St Joseph began in the fifteenth century, fostered by Sts Brigid of Sweden and Bernadine of Siena. St Teresa of Avila, too, did much to further his cult.
At present there are two major feasts in his honour. Today 19 our veneration is directed to him personally and to his part in the work of redemption and is his main Feast and a Solemnity in the Universal Church, while on 1 May we honour him as the patron of workmen throughout the world and as our guide in the difficult matter of establishing equitable norms regarding obligations and rights in the social order….Excerpted from The Church’s Year of Grace, Pius Parsch
Grant, we pray, almighty God, that by Saint Joseph’s intercession Your Church may constantly watch over the unfolding of the mysteries of human salvation, whose beginnings You entrusted to his faithful care. 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.
Saint of the Day – 22 December – St Frances Xavier Cabrini M.S.C. RELIGIOUS AND FOUNDRESS – Born Francesca Saverio Cabrini on 15 July 1850 – 22 December 1917), also called Mother Cabrini, was an Italian-American religious sister, who founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, that was a major support to the Italian immigrants to the United States. She was the first naturalised citizen of the United States to be canonised on 7 July 1946. Additional Memorial – 13 November (in the United States). Patronages – • against malaria • emigrants, immigrants (given on 8 September 1950 by Pope Pius XII) • hospital administrators • orphans.
This saint, the first United States citizen to be canonised, was born in Italy of parents who were farmers. She was the thirteenth child, born when her mother was fifty-two years old. The missionary spirit was awakened in her as a little girl when her father read stories of the missions to his children. She received a good education and at eighteen was awarded the normal school certificate.
For a while she helped the pastor teach catechism and visited the sick and the poor. She also taught school in a nearby town and for six years supervised an orphanage assisted by a group of young women. The bishop of Lodi heard of this group and asked Frances to establish a missionary institute to work in his diocese. Frances did so, calling the community the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart. An academy for girls was opened and new houses quickly sprang up.
One day Bishop Scalabrini, founder of the Missionaries of Emigration, described to Mother Cabrini the wretched economical and spiritual conditions of the many Italian immigrants in the United States and she was deeply moved. An audience with Pope Leo XIII changed her plans to go to the missions of the East. “Not to the East, but to the West,” the Pope said to her. “Go to the United States.” Mother Cabrini no longer hesitated. She landed in New York in 1889, established an orphanage and then set out on a lifework that comprised the alleviation of every human need. For the children she erected schools, kindergartens, clinics, orphanages and foundling homes and numbers of hospitals for the needy sick. At her death over five thousand children were receiving care in her charitable institutions and at the same time her community had grown to five hundred members in seventy houses in North and South America, France, Spain and England.
St Frances, frail and diminutive of stature, showed such energy and enterprise that everyone marvelled. She crossed the Atlantic twenty-five times to visit the various houses and institutions. In 1909 she adopted the United States as her country and became a citizen. After thirty-seven years of unflagging labour and heroic charity she died alone in a chair in Columbus Hospital at Chicago, Illinois, while making dolls for orphans in preparation for a Christmas party. Cardinal Mundelein of Chicago officiated at her funeral and in 1938 also presided at her beatification by Pius XI. She was canonised by Pius XII in 1946. She lies buried under the altar of the chapel of Mother Cabrini High School in New York City.
You must be logged in to post a comment.