Posted in MARIAN TITLES, MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY, YouTube VIDEOS

Foundation of Our Lady of Cambron, France (1148) and Memorials of the Saints – 24 July

Foundation of Our Lady of Cambron, France (1148) – 24 July:

This feast day celebrates the Foundation of the Abbey of Our Lady of Cambron, near Mons, in Hainault, Belgium, by Anselm de Trasigny, Lord of Peronne and Canon of Soignies, in the year 1148.
The Abbey of Cambron was founded on the River Blanche and was a daughter house of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux. It was situated some distance from Mons in Cambron-Casteau in Hainaut, Belgium and took its name from the land on which it was built. Cambron, in its turn, had daughter houses in the Abbeys of Fontenelle at Valenciennes and six other sites. The image of Our Lady formerly honoured at Cambron was famous for a great number of miraculous cures. A Chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Cambron, was built at Mons in 1550 in a part of the Prince’s park.
In the following centuries the magistrates of Mons had a beautiful door built for the Shrine and added other embellishments. There was a small but well honoured and visited Oratory. In 1559, thieves broke into the Chapel and stole everything of value.
After the French Revolution when the State took over all properties belonging to the Church, this Chapel of Our Lady of Cambron was also taken. It was demolished after all the wood, iron and lead was removed. The Statue of the Blessed Virgin which decorated the Altar was then placed in the Church of Saint Elizabeth at Mons. The Abbey of Cambron was rebuilt in the 18th Century but was ordered to be vacated in 1783 by the Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II. It was later sold to a wealthy Count who built a mansion on the property and the land remained in his family’s hands until it was sold in 1993 to a family, who turned the holy and once revered site, into the location of a public zoo known as the Pairi Daiza.
Verneration of Our Lady of Cambron: “In 1322 there was a serious incident at Cambron. An image of the Virgin Mary was profaned. The widely held suspicion was that a Jewish perpetrator had falsified conversion to Christianity to gain access to the image. The affair caused significant unrest and provoked the sympathy of many Christians. There were prayers and devotions held to repair the image. Thus the devotion to Our Lady of Cambron was begun. After a request by the King of France Philip of Valois, Pope Benedict XII issued a Papal Bull granting indulgences to pilgrims to Cambron. The pilgrimage to the Virgin of Cambron was thus begun. A solemn procession takes place each year on the third Sunday of Easter.”

Among the pilgrims and visitors were several important figures, including the Emperor Maximilian I, who, passing through Belgium in the early 16th century, visited the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Cambron. He gave the Abbey sufficient funds to commission the restoration of the painted image.

The above very old and blurred image relates the legend of the attack on the Holy Painting

St Charbel Makhluf OLM (1828-1898) (Optional Memorial) Monk, Priest, Hermit, Miracle Worker – The holy monk whose dead body radiated white light.
About St Charbel:

https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/07/24/saint-of-the-day-24-july-st-charbel-makhluf-o-l-m-the-holy-monk-whose-dead-body-radiated-white-light/

St Aliprandus of Pavia
St Antinogenes of Merida
St Aquilina the Martyr
St Arnulf of Gruyere
Bl Balduino of Rieti
St Boris of Kiev
St Capito

St Christina of Bolsena (3rd Century) Virgin Martyr

St Christina Mirabilis/the Astonishing (1150-1224) Virgin, mendicant, Penitent, Mystic.
Her amazing life:

https://anastpaul.com/2019/07/24/saint-of-the-day-24-july-saint-christina-mirabilis-1150-1224/

Blessed Cristobal of St Catherine TOSF (1638-1690) Priest, Founder of the Franciscan Hospitallers of Jesus of Nazareth, Franciscan Tertiary.
Biography:

https://anastpaul.com/2018/07/24/saint-of-the-day-24-july-bl-cristobal-of-st-catherine-t-o-s-f-1638-1690/

St Cyriacus of Ziganeus
St Declan of Ardmore
Bl Diego Martinez
Bl Donatus of Urbino

Blessed Giovanni Tavalli (1386-1446) Archbishop, Friar of the Jesuit Friars of Saint Jerome.
Blessed Giovanni’s Life:

https://anastpaul.com/2020/07/24/saint-of-the-day-24-july-blessed-giovanni-tavalli-1386-1446/

Martyred in England:
John Boste
Joseph Lambton
Nicholas Garlick
Richard Simpson
Robert Ludlam

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War:
Bl Cándido Castán San José
Bl Cecilio Vega Domínguez
St Ignacio González Calzada
St Jaime Gascón Bordas
Bl José Joaquín Esnaola Urteaga
Bl José Máximo Moro Briz
St Josep Guillamí Rodo
St Marcos Morón Casas
Bl Maria Angeles of Saint Joseph
Bl Maria Mercedes Prat
Bl Maria Pilar of Saint Francis Borgia
Bl Teresa of the Child Jesus and of Saint John of the Cross
St Xavier Bordas Piferrer

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEBRUARY-The HOLY FAMILY, OCTOBER - The HOLY ROSARY, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the FAMILY, QUOTES/PRAYERS on THE FAMILY, ROSARY QUOTES, The HEART, THE HOLY FAMILY - FAMILIAE SANCTAE, The HOLY ROSARY/ROSARY CRUSADE

Quote/s of the Day – 1 February – “Month of the Holy Family of Nazareth”

Quote/s of the Day – 1 February – “Month of the Holy Family of Nazareth”

“Thus, parents, I say, are more vicious,
more cruel than child-murderers;
for, a murderer of children, as Herod was,
separates only the body from the soul;
while the others, give the souls and bodies of their children
to eternal flames!
Further, those who are killed
would have died in the course of time,
though they had not been murdered;
while children, neglected by their parents,
might have avoided eternal death,
had not the wickedness of their parents
prepared it for them.
Besides this, the general resurrection
would have compensated for the bodily death,
while the death and destruction of the soul,
nothing can restore.
A child, condemned by the parent’s fault,
has no hope of salvation
but has to suffer eternal pains.
Hence I am right in saying,
that such parents are worse than child-murderers.”

St John Chrysostom (347-407)
Father & Doctor

“We become what we love
and who we love,
shapes what we become.”

St Clare of Assisi (1194-1253)

“On the journey of this life to eternity,
let me carry You in my heart,
following Mary’s example,
who bore You in her arms,
during the flight to Egypt.”

St Alphonsus Maria de Liguori (1696-1787)
Bishop and Doctor of the Church

“To hand onto your children.
the faith you received from your parents,
is your first duty
and your greatest privilege as parents.
The home should be the first school of religion,
as it must be the first school of prayer.”

Bl Louise-Thérèse de Montaignac de Chauvance (1820-1885)
“Apostle of the Sacred Heart”

“The family is the basis in the Lord’s plan
and all the forces of evil
aim to demolish it.
Uphold your families
and guard them
against the grudges
of the evil one,
by the Presence of God.

St Charbel Makhlouf OLM (1828-1898)

“ … The family is not made for society;
rather, it is society, which is made for the family.”

“God did not create a human family
made up of segregated, dissociated,
mutually independent members.
No; He would have them all united
by the bond of total love of Him
and consequent self-dedication
to assisting each other
to maintain that bond intact.”

“There is no surer means
of calling down God’s blessing
upon the family,
than the daily recitation
of the Rosary.”

Ven Servant of God Pope Pius XII (1876-1958)

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, INCORRUPTIBLES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on HOLY SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on VIRTUE, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 24 July – The disposition of the ground …

One Minute Reflection – 24 July – Friday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: Jeremiah 3:14-17, Responsorial psalm Jeremiah 31:10-13Matthew 13:18-23 and the Memorial of St Charbel Makhluf (1828-1898)

“As for what was sown on good soil, this is he who hears the word and understands it;  he indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty and in another thirty.”...Matthew 13:23

REFLECTION – “And yet, if both the land be good and the Sower one and the seed the same, wherefore did one bear a hundred, one sixty, one thirty?
Here again the difference is from the nature of the ground, for even where the ground is good, great even therein, is the difference.
Understand that not the Sower is to be blamed, nor the seed but the land that receives it? not for its nature but, for its disposition.
And herein too, great is His mercy to man, that He does not require one measure of virtue.
… And these things He says, lest they that followed Him should suppose that hearing is sufficient for salvation.
… Yes, both vainglory and all the rest belong to this world and to the deceitfulness of riches, such as pleasure and gluttony and envy and vainglory and all the like.

But He added also the “way” and the “rock,” signifying that it is not enough to be freed from riches only, but we must cultivate also the other parts of virtue.
But what if you are free indeed from riches, yet are soft and unmanly? and what if you are not indeed unmanly but are remiss and careless about the hearing of the word?
No one part is sufficient for our salvation but there is required first, a careful hearing and a continual recollection, then fortitude, then contempt of riches and deliverance from all worldly things.” … St John Chrysostom (347-407) Father and Doctormatthew 13 23 - parable of the seed - but what if you are free indeed from riches - st john chrysostom 24 july 2020

PRAYER – A pure heart create for me O God, put a steadfast spirit within me! (Ps 50[51]) Lord God, bestow a full measure of Your grace to us.   Keep us within in the path of Your commandments, help us to work on the earth of our souls, rooting out the weeds and casting forth the stones of malice.   Grant that by the prayers of St Charbel Makhluf, who by Your grace triumphed in all virtues, we may succeed in attaining sanctity.   Through Christ, our Lord, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God, forever, amen.st-charbel-pray-for-us-24-july-2017-2018-and-2019 and 2020

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 24 July

St Charbel Makhluf OLM (1828-1898) (Optional Memorial)
About St Charbel:
https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/07/24/saint-of-the-day-24-july-st-charbel-makhluf-o-l-m-the-holy-monk-whose-dead-body-radiated-white-light/

The Chaplet of St Charbel:

https://anastpaul.com/2017/07/24/the-chaplet-of-st-charbel-makhluf/

St Aliprandus of Pavia
St Antinogenes of Merida
St Aquilina the Martyr
St Arnulf of Gruyere
Bl Balduino of Rieti
St Boris of Kiev
St Capito
St Christiana
St Christina of Bolsena
St Christina of Tyre
St Christina Mirabilis/the Astonishing (1150-1224)
Her amazing life:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/07/24/saint-of-the-day-24-july-saint-christina-mirabilis-1150-1224/

Bl Cristobal of St Catherine TOSF (1638-1690)
Biography:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/07/24/saint-of-the-day-24-july-bl-cristobal-of-st-catherine-t-o-s-f-1638-1690/

St Cyriacus of Ziganeus
St Declan of Ardmore
Bl Diego Martinez
Bl Donatus of Urbino
Blessed Giovanni Tavalli (1386-1446) Bishop
St Gleb
Bl Godo of Oye
St John Boste
Bl Joseph Fernandez
Bl Joseph Lambton
Bl Juan Solorzano
St Kinga
St Lewina of Seaford
Bl Louise of Savoy
Bl Menefrida
St Meneus
St Niceta
Bl Nicholas Garlick
Bl Paulus Yi Do-gi
Bl Pierre de Barellis
St Rainofle
Bl Richard Simpson
Bl Robert Ludlam
Rufinus of Mercia
St Sigolena of Trocar
St Stercatius of Merida
St Ursicinus of Sens
St Victor of Merida
St Victorinus of Amiterno
St Vincent of Rome
St Wulfhad of Mercia

Martyred in England:
John Boste
Joseph Lambton
Nicholas Garlick
Richard Simpson
Robert Ludlam

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War:
Bl Cándido Castán San José
Bl Cecilio Vega Domínguez
St Ignacio González Calzada
St Jaime Gascón Bordas
Bl José Joaquín Esnaola Urteaga
Bl José Máximo Moro Briz
St Josep Guillamí Rodo
St Marcos Morón Casas
Bl Maria Angeles of Saint Joseph
Bl Maria Mercedes Prat
Bl Maria Pilar of Saint Francis Borgia
Bl Teresa of the Child Jesus and of Saint John of the Cross
St Xavier Bordas Piferrer

Posted in MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 24 July – ‘He came Himself … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 24 July  – Wednesday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 13:1-9 and the Memorial of St Charbel Makhluf (1828-1898)

“A sower went out to sow” … Matthew 13:3

REFLECTION – “Now if you ask me what Jesus Christ means by the sower who goes out early to sow seed in his field, my dear brethren, that sower is the good God Himself! He began His work for our salvation from the beginning of the world by sending His prophets to us before the coming of the Messiah to teach us what we had to do to be saved.   And, not satisfied with sending His servants, He came Himself, marked out for us the way we should take and came to preach His holy word.

Do you know what those people are like who aren’t sustained by that holy word or who abuse it?   They are like the sick without a doctor, like a traveller who has gone astray without a guide, like a poor man without means.   Let us rather say, my brethren, that it is altogether impossible to love God and please Him without being nourished by this divine word.   What is there that can draw us to attach ourselves to Him if not because we know Him?   And what enables us to know Him with all His perfections, beauty and love for us if not God’s word, which teaches us all He has done for us and the good things He is preparing for us in the life to come, if we try hard to please Him?” … St John-Marie Baptiste Vianney (1786-1859) Priest, Curé of Ars – Sermonsmatthew 13 3 a sower went out to sow - now if you ask me st john vianney 24 july 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Holy, almighty God, You sent Your prophets and then Your only Son to teach us and lead us to eternal life.   Remember Lord, Your solemn covenant, renewed and consecrated by the blood of the Lamb, so that Your people may obtain forgiveness for their sins and a continued growth in grace.   Send us Your Spirit, to enlighten our hearts and minds and grow in love for You and the Word made flesh.   Guide us in our understanding and living, by the Words of the Word.   Saint Charbel Makhluf intercede for us, that we may merit to be co-heirs of His Kingdom.   Who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever, amen.st-charbel-pray-for-us-24-july-2017, 2018 and 2019.jpg

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 24 July

St Charbel Makhluf OLM (1828-1898) (Optional Memorial)
About St Charbel:
https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/07/24/saint-of-the-day-24-july-st-charbel-makhluf-o-l-m-the-holy-monk-whose-dead-body-radiated-white-light/

St Aliprandus of Pavia
St Antinogenes of Merida
St Aquilina the Martyr
St Arnulf of Gruyere
Bl Balduino of Rieti
St Boris of Kiev
St Capito
St Christiana
St Christina of Bolsena
St Christina of Tyre
St Christina Mirabilis/the Astonishing (1150-1224)

Bl Cristobal of St Catherine T.O.S.F. (1638-1690)
Biography:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/07/24/saint-of-the-day-24-july-bl-cristobal-of-st-catherine-t-o-s-f-1638-1690/

St Cyriacus of Ziganeus
St Declan of Ardmore
Bl Diego Martinez
Bl Donatus of Urbino
Bl Giovanni Tavalli
St Gleb
Bl Godo of Oye
St John Boste
Bl Joseph Fernandez
Bl Joseph Lambton
Bl Juan Solorzano
St Kinga
St Lewina of Seaford
Bl Louise of Savoy
Bl Menefrida
St Meneus
St Niceta
Bl Nicholas Garlick
Bl Paulus Yi Do-gi
Bl Pierre de Barellis
St Rainofle
Bl Richard Simpson
Bl Robert Ludlam
Rufinus of Mercia
St Sigolena of Trocar
St Stercatius of Merida
St Ursicinus of Sens
St Victor of Merida
St Victorinus of Amiterno
St Vincent of Rome
St Wulfhad of Mercia

Martyred in England:
John Boste
Joseph Lambton
Nicholas Garlick
Richard Simpson
Robert Ludlam

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War:
Bl Cándido Castán San José
Bl Cecilio Vega Domínguez
St Ignacio González Calzada
St Jaime Gascón Bordas
Bl José Joaquín Esnaola Urteaga
Bl José Máximo Moro Briz
St Josep Guillamí Rodo
St Marcos Morón Casas
Bl Maria Angeles of Saint Joseph
Bl Maria Mercedes Prat
Bl Maria Pilar of Saint Francis Borgia
Bl Teresa of the Child Jesus and of Saint John of the Cross
St Xavier Bordas Piferrer

Posted in MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, YouTube VIDEOS

Thought for the Day – 24 July – The Memorial of St Charbel Makhluf

Thought for the Day – 24 July – The Memorial of St Charbel Makhluf

Joseph Makhluf was born in 1828 at Beqa-Kafra, Lebanon.   His peasant family lived a strong faith, were attentive to the Divine Liturgy and had a great devotion to the Mother of God.

At the age of 23, Charbel (the name he chose when entering Novitiate) left his closely knit family to enter the Lebanese-Maronite Monastery called Notre-Dame de Mayfouk. Following studies and profession at St Cyprian de Kfifane Monastery, he was ordained in 1859.

For the next seven years, Charbel lived in the mountainous community of Anaya.   After that he spent the next twenty-three years in complete solitude at Sts Peter and Paul Hermitage near Anaya.   He died there on Christmas Eve, 1898.

Charbel had a reputation for his austerity, penances, obedience and chastity.   At times, Charbel was gifted with levitations during prayer and he had great devotion to the Most Blessed Sacrament.

In all things, Charbel maintained perfect serenity.   He was beatified in 1965 by Blessed Pope Paul VI and canonised by him in 1977.

The spirit of Charbel still lives in many people.   His miracles include numerous healings of the body and of the spirit.   Thomas Merton, the American Hermit, wrote in his journal:  “Charbel lived as a hermit in Lebanon—he was a Maronite.   He died.   Everyone forgot about him.   Fifty years later, his body was discovered incorrupt and in short time he worked over 600 miracles.   He is my new companion.   My road has taken a new turning.   It seems to me that I have been asleep for 9 years—and before that I was dead.”

At the closing of the Second Vatican Council, on 5 December 1965 when St Charbel was beatified by Pope Paul VI, he said:

“…a hermit of the Lebanese mountain is inscribed in the number of the blessed…a new eminent member of monastic sanctity is enriching, by his example and his intercession, the entire Christian people… May he make us understand, in a world largely fascinated by wealth and comfort, the paramount value of poverty, penance, and asceticism, to liberate the soul in its ascent to God…”

St Charbel Makhluf, Pray for us!

The Chaplet of St Charbel here:   https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/07/24/the-chaplet-of-st-charbel-makhluf/
And listen to this special song too:

and the lyrics here:   https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/07/24/thought-for-the-day-24-july-the-memorial-of-st-charbel-of-makhluf/st charbel makhluf pray for us - 24 july 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 24 July 2018 – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 12:46-50

One Minute Reflection – 24 July 2018 – Tuesday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 12:46-50 and the Memorial of St Charbel Makhluf (1828-1898)

“For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven, is my brother and sister and mother.”…Matthew 12:50

REFLECTION – “His mother is the whole Church, since it is she, who, by God’s grace, gives birth to Christ’s members, that is to say, those who are faithful to Him.   Again, His mother is every holy soul who does the Father’s will and whose fruitful charity is made known in those, to whom she gives birth for Him, “until he has been formed in them” (cf Gal 4:19)…St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctorfor whoever does the will of my father - matthew 12 50 - his mother is the whole church - st augustine - 24 july 2018

PRAYER – Almighty Father, You made us Your children, You called us from all ages and You formed us by Holy Mother Church.   Grant, we pray, that by Your grace, we may be ever faithful to her and be guided by Your Holy Spirit of love.   O God may Your holy Saint Charbel Makhluf intercede for us that, being made imitators of the Lord’s Passion, we may merit to be co-heirs of His Kingdom.   Who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever, amen.st-charbel-pray-for-us 24 july 2017(1)

Posted in MORNING Prayers, POETRY, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 24 July – The Memorial of St Charbel of Makhluf

Thought for the Day – 24 July – The Memorial of St Charbel of Makhluf

In 1950, Father George Webby, a Maronite priest from Scranton, visited Lebanon, took a photo of monks outside the wall of the monastery in which St. Charbel had lived and upon development of the picture saw that St. Charbel miraculously appeared with the monks, according to information provided by St. Anthony’s Church.

StShar02

Art work for holy pictures of this saint is now taken from this photo.   Can you see him? (Hint: smack dab in the middle) click on the picture and then zoom in….

St. Charbel is listed among The Incorruptibles, saints whose bodies were found intact years after burial. His body kept pouring oil and blood until the year before his canonization in 1977.

“…a hermit of the Lebanese mountain is inscribed in the number of the blessed, a new eminent member of monastic sanctity is enriching, by his example and his intercession, the entire Christian people.   May he make us understand, in a world largely fascinated by wealth and comfort, the paramount value of poverty, penance and asceticism, to liberate the soul in its ascent to God…” ……….Pope Paul VI, October 9, 1977

St Charbel Makhluf, Pray for us!

st charbel - pray for us.2.

Watch – “The Saint Charble Song” …it’s special…

A beautiful ode to Saint Charbel, written by J. Michael Thompson- (a Catholic Composer, professor of ecclesiastical chant):

The mountain heights of Lebanon
Resound with songs of joy;
The cedars of that ancient land
Stand tall as we employ
Our hymns of praise and thankfulness
For Sharbel’s saintly ways,
Lived out in strict humility
That guided all his days.

True monk and hermit of the hills,
Saint Maron’s modest son
Scorned wealth and comfort in his life
That heaven’s crown be won.
Of Mary, heaven’s Queen and Gate,
Devoted son was he,
Who cherished all the ancient rites
With great humility.

Fierce lover of the lowly life,
True father of the poor,
As you have done, so help us all
To struggle and endure,
That Christ be praised in ev’ry life,
That riches not ensnare
Or rule us in our daily walk;
That strong may be our prayer!

O Father, Son, and Spirit blest,
One God in persons three,
Receive this hymn we offer now,
And keep your Church e’er free
To follow, as Saint Sharbel did,
Enflamed with love so bright
That we, with eyes fixed firm on Christ,
May vanquish sin’s dark night.

Posted in MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY

One Minute Reflection – 24 July

One Minute Reflection – 24 July

Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice; let them say among the nations: The LORD is king……1 Chronicles 16:31

REFLECTION – “Great is the gladness in heaven and earth today for the beatification of Charbel Makhluf, monk and hermit of the Lebanese Maronite Order. Great is the joy of the East and West for this son of Lebanon, admirable flower of sanctity blooming on the stem of the ancient monastic traditions of the East and venerated today by the Church of Rome.”……Bl Pope Paul VI at the Beatification ceremny at the closing of the Second Vatican Council, in 1965.

great is the joy of the East and West - bl pope paul VI

PRAYER – Lord, infinitely Holy and Glorified in Your Saints, You have inspired Charbel, the saint monk, to lead the perfect life of a hermit. We thank You for granting him the blessing and the strength to detach himself from the world so that the heroism of the monastic virtues of poverty,obedience, and chastity, could triumph in his hermitage. We beseech You to grant us the grace of loving and serving You, following his example. Almighty God, Who has manifested the power of St Charbel’s intercession
through his countless miracles and favours, grant us our intentions through his intercession. Amen

st charbel - pray for us

Posted in INCORRUPTIBLES

Saint of the Day – 24 July – St Charbel Makhluf O.L.M. – The holy monk whose dead body radiated white light

Saint of the Day – 24 July – St Charbel Makhluf O.L.M. Monk, Priest, Hermit, Miracle Worker  – The holy monk whose dead body radiated white light – (8 May 1828 at Beka-Kafra, Lebanon as Joseph Zaroun Makhlouf – 24 December 1898 at Annaya of natural causes).   St Charbel was Beatified in 1965, at the close of Vatican II and Canonised on 9 October 1977 by Pope Paul VI.   Patron of Lebanon.

st charbel header 2

st charbel makhluf.infopgraphics

Youssef Antoun Makhlouf, the fifth child of a mule driver and his wife, he was born at Biqa-Kafra in the mountains of north Lebanon.   Orphaned at an early age, he was brought up by an uncle who showed little sympathy for his charge’s devotion to prayer and solitude.   Undeterred, in 1851, at the age of 23, Makhlouf entered the monastery of St Maroun at Annaya, taking the name in religion of Charbel, a second-century martyr at Antioch.

For 16 years, he worked hard in the monastery’s vineyards and sang the office at Mass.  If Charbel was in any way distinguished from his fellow monks it was in his greater fervour for mortification, his rapt attention at Mass and his constant perusal of Thomas à Kempis’s Imitation of Christ.   Although ordained a priest in 1859, Charbel increasingly felt the call to become a hermit.   For some years his superiors resisted this ambition.   In 1875, however, he removed to a hermitage attached to the monastery.   At 4,600 feet above sea level his cell was often freezing;  it was clear, however, that suffering and self-obliteration were precisely the graces which he sought.   Following his death, the monks who trembled with cold during the night when they kept vigil at his coffin before his funeral, said:  “See how we find ourselves unable to endure for a single night, the rude cold of this chapel!   How could this priest live here for twenty-three years, on his knees, like a statue before the altar, every night from midnight until eleven in the morning, when he rose to say his Mass?   Blessed is he, for he undoubtedly receives at present his reward with God!”   

st charbel's cell
St Charbel’s Cell

Saint Charbel also gained a reputation for holiness and despite his wish to live in isolation, was much sought for counsel and blessing.   He had a great personal devotion to the Blessed Sacrament and the Blessed Virgin and was known to levitate during his prayers.   He reportedly never raised his eyes from the ground, his face shrouded by his cloak, unless his gaze was fixed on the tabernacle during the Eucharist.

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The week before Christmas, while Saint Charbel was offering Mass, paralysis struck him suddenly as he elevated the Eucharist during the consecration.   For one week, he suffered in agony, repeating the prayer he was unable to complete during the Mass:  “O Father of truth, behold Your Son, victim to please You;  condescend to approve [this offering], because for me He endured death, to give me life…”

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When Charbel died, aged 70, he was interred in the monastery cemetery, without a coffin, as was customary. On the evening of his funeral, his superior wrote:  “Because of what he will do after his death, I need not talk about his behavior.”  Over the next 45 days, however, it seemed to many observers that the place where his body lay was irradiated by white light.   After four months it was decided to open the grave. Charbel’s cadaver was found to be perfectly preserved notwithstanding floods which had turned the area into a sea of mud.

The corpse was re-clothed and installed in the monastery chapel.   Now, a strange liquid was secreted from the pores of the dead man’s skin, making it necessary regularly to change his garments.   An examination conducted in 1927 by doctors of the local French medical institute found that the body was still incorrupt.   At this stage it was transferred to a new zinc-lined coffin, which was placed inside the wall of an oratory.

In 1950 a liquid was observed to be oozing from a corner of the tomb.   Another examination discovered a viscous fluid in the bottom of the coffin.   And while subsequent investigations have revealed a body no longer incorrupt, the bones have mysteriously turned red.

Hundreds of cures have been, and still are, reported by those who visited Charbel’s tomb. He was canonised in 1977.