11/19/2021 – St. Rafael Kalinowski

11/19/2021 – St. Rafael Kalinowski

Carmelite, St Rafael Kalinowski, today’s saint

“Sometimes we find the lives of saints more distressing than encouraging. We read that Saint So-and-So from age three to ninety was always faithful, never doubted…, never sinned, and prayed day and night. That kind of story puts sanctity beyond our reach. But the life of Joseph Kalinowski, later as a Carmelite called Raphael, makes holiness possible for us.

By his death in 1907, Raphael was regarded as a great saint throughout Poland and Lithuania. But he progressed slowly on the road to sainthood, drifting away from the faith as a youth and struggling with doubts and hesitations during his gradual conversion.” (Bert Ghezzi)

Fr Raphael was born into a Catholic home, Vilinus, one hundred years before the original image of the Divine Mercy was unveiled in the church there. However he only came to faith slowly grace by grace and we could say bead by bead. He learned the Rosary in his family. Despite his absorption in his career as a military engineer, in his years as a leader in the Polish resistance and subsequent exile in a Russian gulag, he would return to the rosary. For him it became the bridge from confusion and distraction to faith. And from faith to vocation and finally to holiness and heaven.

“Every step of our life should bring us closer to God, and help to provide at least a little happiness to our neighbor.” — Saint Raphael Kalinowski

11/18/2021 – Blessed Karolina Kozka

11/18/2021 – Blessed Karolina Kozka

Blessed Karolina Kózka was only fifteen years old in 1914 when she died a martyr for chastity.

“With the outbreak of World War I Russian forces began occupying Polish towns and cities…. Tensions grew as stories swirled about soldiers looting and raping women which exacerbated fear in the area.

At the start of the occupation a Russian soldier came to the Kózka farm.” Physically, the soldier was much stronger than the Karolina, but Karolina had a spiritual strength that the soldier did not expect. Enraged at her resistance, he repeatedly stabbed her. Where did this strength come from?

“Her childhood was spent on the family farm (in Poland). She would often gather neighbours and relatives and invite them to read the Bible together under a pear tree near her home. Kózka loved reciting the rosary using beads her mother had given her. She would fall asleep praying to Mary. Kózka would pray on her long walk to Mass. …She also helped out teaching the catechism to children of the parish.

During Lent she would lead her family in singing about the Passion of the Lord and at Christmas would intone carols. Some of the villagers referred to her home as “the little church”.

Kózka received her First Communion in 1907. She was confirmed on 18 May 1914. She is said to have had a particular devotion to the Mother of God evidenced by her custom to recite the rosary deep into the night.” (catholic.org)

Blessed Karolina, Pray for us!

11/17/2021 – Queen Elizabeth

11/17/2021 – Queen Elizabeth

On November 17, 1558 Queen Mary I died and Queen Elizabeth became Queen of England. Elizabeth would reign for 44 year. Mary in her short five year reign had attempted to restore Catholicism in England, the faith abandoned and banned by her father King Henry VIII twenty years before. Mary carried and sometimes wore her rosary for all to see. For her it was a pledge of fidelity and a prayer for restoration. Elizabeth, though she promised Mary that she would carry on the work of restoring the Catholic faith, began the persecution of Catholics as soon as she secured the crown.Queen Elizabeth banned the Holy Mass, outlawed priests, declared evangelisation equivalent to treason. She had a particular hatred of rosary beads which she gave the legal designation of “superstitious” items. Possessing a rosary would lead to forfeiture of lands and goods.Yet we know rosaries survived though they became treasured but hidden objects. Used and relied on more than ever by the estimated 1% of English who remained faithful to the Catholic faith.Courtesy of 1 in 10 Rosary Mission IrelandDon’t forget – 9pm is Rosary for Ireland on Radio Maria

11/16/2021 – St Joseph Moscatti

11/16/2021 – St Joseph Moscatti

St Joseph Moscaiti, a recent saint from Naples, was a holy doctor who loved God and never lost sight of the fact that his patients were both body and soul.

He would treat both with the greatest care and skill.

The heavy workload, medical and research accomplishments, and the heroism he displayed in war, volcano and plague in his short forty-seven years are hard to understand.

Unless, one knows that he had consecrated himself to the Lord’s service and underpinned all he did with prayer.

St Joseph Moscaiti attended daily Mass and received Holy Communion. He prayed throughout the day, especially the rosary.

Dr. Moscati always carried a rosary in his pocket as a reminder to seek help from Mary and Jesus when he had to make important decisions.

Our Lady makes saints in all walks of life. And she can do it in our lives as well. Like St Joseph Moscaiti always have a rosary to hand…and use it!

Courtesy of 1 in 10 Rosary Mission Ireland

Don’t forget – 9pm is Rosary for Ireland on Radio Maria

11/15/2021 – Martyrs of Reading and Glastonbury Abbeys

11/15/2021 – Martyrs of Reading and Glastonbury Abbeys

Today is the feasts of the martyrs of Reading and Glastonbury Abbeys.

In 1539, these abbots and monks refused to surrender their abbeys to King Henry VIII and were executed as obstacles to be removed.

Once the King abandoned his wife Katherine and his faith, his lifestyle and politics became extremely expensive. Looking for a new source of income he decided to liquidate the monasteries and convents, to turn altar vessels and tabernacles into King’s coinage.

Though in the past as a faithful son of the Church he had revered and prayed at some of them. In his new state, they had become an object of hate to be robbed and plundered.

British museums have displays of beautiful rosaries dating from the arrival of the first Dominicans in the 1200s. Rosaries were one of the necessities of life among the faithful of all classes. Many that still exist are exquisitely carved and decorated.

All this changed under Henry VIII’s daughter, Queen Elizabeth I, who identified the carrier of a Rosary, as a Papist, which was a punishable offence. The rosaries that survived the hundred of years of persecution in Britain are unlike the ones from before. They are often made of string, coarse beads or knots, often consisting of just one decade which made them easier to hide. These later dated rosaries tell a story of great suffering and great sanctity.

Courtesy of 1 in 10 Rosary Mission Ireland

Don’t forget – 9pm is Rosary for Ireland on Radio Maria

11/14/2021 – Pray for Souls in Purgatory

11/14/2021 – Pray for Souls in Purgatory

Giving the Holy Souls in Purgatory an indulgence is “the highest act of supernatural charity,” says Blessed Pope John Paul II. What better way to pray for them than by the Rosary?…The word, itself, “rosary” comes from the Latin, meaning “rose,” “We offer a beautiful rose for each Hail Mary to Our Lady. She presents this Rosary bouquet to her Son, Jesus.” As a result,“She [Our Lady] intercedes for the living and the dead,” Not only will our prayers help the Holy Souls, but, then we, too, will have a soul in Heaven praying for us, a saint who is interceding on our behalf. In fact, “When we pray the Rosary for the holy souls, we gain fresh intercessors and also increase God’s glory…God has given us the awesome power and the privilege of assisting souls on their journey to paradise.”(Susan Tassone, The Rosary for the Holy Souls in Purgatory)