Tuesday 13th April 2021

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Catholic Heroes . . . St. Jeanne Jugan

April 6, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes . . . St. Jeanne Jugan

By DEB PIROCH “The Seventh Commandment implies the obligation of assisting the poor and needy as far as we are able. . . . Our Lord declares the omission of alms deeds will be punished by eternal damnation (Matt. 25:46). . . . For many persons, without their own fault, are pitiably destitute, e.g. orphans, widows, the sick and disabled, the deformed, the insane, and the like” —The Gospels and Epistles of the Sundays and Feasts with Outlines for Sermons.To care for the sick is a corporal work of mercy. Officially St. John is the patron saint of caregivers, for Christ handed him His Mother’s care when they stood at the foot of the cross, watching Him die. But St.…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Pope St. Pius X

March 30, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… Pope St. Pius X

By DEB PIROCH “He saith to him again: Simon, son of John, lovest thou me? He saith to him: Yea, Lord, thou knowest that I love thee. He saith to him: Feed my lambs. He said to him the third time: Simon, son of John, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved, because he had said to him the third time: Lovest thou me? And he said to him: Lord, thou knowest all things: thou knowest that I love thee. He said to him: Feed my sheep” (John 26:16-17).His family knew him as “Bepi.” Giuseppe Melchiorre Sarto, born in 1835 near Venice, was the second eldest son of a poor Italian postman and his dressmaker wife. Two of his ten siblings did not…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Pope Pius XII (1876-1958)

March 23, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… Pope Pius XII (1876-1958)

By DEB PIROCH Part 2 We spoke in last week’s column, part one, about the encyclical of Pope Pius XII’s Predecessor, entitled Mit Brennender Sorge, in which he had a role. This evidenced part of a continuum shown by the Church, in which Pacelli, the future Pope, showed the Church’s antipathy toward and disgust with the evil of Hitler’s ideology.One of the most vile and most repeated lies perpetuated today is that the Church, along with Pope Pius XII, remained “silent” while Jews and others were killed during the Holocaust. Most who repeat this falsehood do not realize no one thought to invent this fiction until the 1960s. It was introduced in the German work, Der Stellvertreter, a play by…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Pope Pius XII (1876-1958)

March 16, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… Pope Pius XII (1876-1958)

By DEB PIROCH Part 1Few Popes have been as unjustly maligned in our day and age as Pope Pius XII. He has been accused by many anti-Catholics with complicity in the Nazi Holocaust, which is heinous, when he was really responsible for saving as many as 800,000 lives (Israeli diplomat and historian Pinchas Lapide, Author of Three Popes and the Jews, 1967).This two-part article on Pope Pius XII aims to address some of the vicious slander hurled against this saintly man, whom Pope Benedict declared venerable in 2009. As the vicious lie is still so often repeated, it behooves every Catholic to have ready answers to refute such propaganda. Ironically, the falsehood began decades after the war and even after…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. John The Baptist

March 9, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. John The Baptist

By DEB PIROCH “What went you out into the desert to see? A reed shaken with the wind? But what went you out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Behold they that are in costly apparel and live delicately, are in the houses of kings. But what went you out to see? A prophet? Yea, I say to you, and more than a prophet. This is he of whom it is written: Behold I send my angel before thy face, who shall prepare thy way before thee. For I say to you: Amongst those that are born of women, there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist” (Luke 7:24-28).St. John the Baptist is a special prophet,…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . Sr. Miriam Teresa Demjanovich

March 2, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes . . . Sr. Miriam Teresa Demjanovich

By DEB PIROCH Sr. Miriam Teresa Demjanovich, born at the beginning of the twentieth century in 1901, would be the first American-born citizen beatified on American soil. She was born in Bayonne, N.J., of Slovak immigrant parents, Alexander and Johanna. Miriam was the youngest of seven, all raised and confirmed in the Byzantine-Ruthenian Catholic Church.Miriam already had a call to the religious life after attending high school and graduating as valedictorian, but her mother was ill and she put off any plans in order to nurse her. She would die of the flu when Miriam was 17. Already Miriam’s piety was noted, but she had yet not decided where to enter.So, she opted to go to college, attending St. Elizabeth’s…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Blessed Solanus Casey

February 23, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… Blessed Solanus Casey

By DEB PIROCH With all our talk of pandemics, masks, shut-downs, and vaccinations, and with Ash Wednesday not being celebrated as we are accustomed with ashes on our forehead, we would do well to recall that our souls are fashioned for the next world.Moreover, we should concentrate on the next 40 days, indeed for a lifetime, on improving within our state in life during this Year of St. Joseph. We should also ask Blessed Solanus Casey to intercede for us to prepare us for a holy and blessed death when our time comes.Fr. Solanus Casey was the religious name given to Bernard Francis Casey, a priest of the Capuchin order, born in 1870 as the sixth of 16 children to…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Blaise

February 16, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Blaise

By DEB PIROCH Some of you recently will have taken note of the Feast of St. Blaise (February 3) and others will have missed it altogether. The reason is that some churches seem to have taken to giving the blessing on the feast and not on the Sunday before or after. Additionally, in many churches it is now sadly given as a communal blessing, instead of individually, as was the tradition almost all the years I have been a Catholic.Some are stating this year they are opting to do this on account of COVID; however, the candles do not even need to necessarily touch the person being blessed. It is wise to remember that the devotion has been popular for…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen

February 9, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes . . . Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen

By DEB PIROCH “We have almost forgotten that we are in a great mortal combat; the forces of good and the forces of evil. Today we are beginning either to domesticate the devil or to deny him” — Fulton J. Sheen.Before there was EWTN with Mother Angelica, there was Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen. The Venerable Sheen is proof that Catholic orthodoxy is dynamic, popular, and riveting. The priest who was born before the advent of broadcasting would go on to be a radio, then a television “star,” which only God could have foreseen. When network executives one day placed his television show prime time opposite Milton Berle, he wiped him in the ratings, the source of many jokes on both…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Nicholas Of Tolentino

February 2, 2021 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes . . . St. Nicholas Of Tolentino

By DEB PIROCH There exist numerous accounts throughout the ages of appearances by souls from Purgatory, asking for Masses to be said so they might be released from their suffering and sped to Heaven. Padre Pio, for instance, often received visits from such deceased persons and the first time was frightened, having realized he had spoken to someone who was no longer among the living!Just such another associated with the Holy Souls is St. Nicholas of Tolentino (1245-1305). It is said he was shown a vision of Purgatory by a soul begging him for prayers, and then souls were released on account of Masses said. During this time of pandemic, when we are told we are released from our obligation…Continue Reading