Our Lady holding Jesus as He accepts flowers from the shepherd child

Our Lady holding Jesus as He accepts flowers from the shepherd child

Welcome to our intercessory prayer ministry for families, babies, little ones and those who love them.

In our prayers for families, we pray for the sanctity of all life and for vocations to marriage, the priesthood and consecrated life, which are born and nurtured in families.

Prayer of Entrustment to Mary was prayed for this ministry at the icon of the Madonna Salus Populi Romani (Salvation of the Roman People, Our Lady of Good Health) in the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore (Basilica of Mary Major) in Rome, Italy, in Nossa Senhora do Rosario da Fatima (Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary) in Fatima, Portugal, in Eglise du Sacre-Coeur (Sacred Heart Parish Church), the site of St. Bernadette's baptismal font, in Lourdes, France and at The National Shrine of The Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, Massachusetts at the Shrine of the Holy Innocents before Our Lady of Guadalupe and at Basilica Papale de San Pietro in Vaticano (St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City) at the Tomb of St. John Paul II in Rome, Italy.

This ministry is consecrated to Jesus Christ, Wisdom Incarnate, through the hands of Mary and dedicated to Our Lady of the Rosary. In our prayers to Mary, we honor and worship her Son Jesus. When He was on the Cross, He gave His Mother to John and she became our Mother as well. "Behold, your Mother." John 19:27

Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam
For the greater glory of God

February 20, 2018

Reflection: Saint Francisco and Saint Jacinta

Today we celebrate the Feast Day of siblings, Saint Jacinta and Saint Francisco Marto, two of the Fatima shepherd children. In 1916, the Angel of Peace appeared to them three times to prepare them for the apparitions of Our Lady. They were consumed with zeal to make sacrifices for the conversion of sinners. They were infused with love for the Eucharist and for making reparation for sinners. The Angel told them,

"The Most Holy Hearts of Jesus and Mary have designs of mercy on you."

Isn't that beautiful! The Most Holy Hearts of Jesus and Mary have designs of mercy on you too!

Our Lady of Fatima appeared to them and their cousin Blessed Lucia between May 13 and October 13, 1917 and entrusted them with messages from God for the world. She told them to pray the Rosary daily for peace and an end to war, to offer penance and make sacrifices for sinners. These messages are for us too. The children endured great ridicule, suffering and persecution but remained faithful to Our Lady's requests. Jacinta and Francisco died in 1918, as very young children. and were canonized saints on May 13, 2017, the 100th anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima.

Let us ask their intercession for all our intentions.

Prayer to Saints Jacinta and Francisco
God of infinite goodness, You love the innocent and exalt the humble; please grant, through the intercession of the Immaculate Mother of Your Son, that, in imitation of Saint Francisco and Saint Jacinta, we may serve You in simplicity of heart and thus may enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Through Our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, Who is God with You in union with the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Our Lady wants us to consecrate ourselves to her Immaculate Heart, a consecration in which we make a complete surrender of self to our Mother, promising her that we will: Pray the Rosary every day. Offer the little daily sacrifices for the conversion of sinners. Make the five Communions of Reparation on the first Saturdays of five consecutive months. In the last apparition at Fatima, Our Lady appeared as Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, holding the Scapular in her outstretched hand. The Scapular is the sign of our consecration to Mary's Immaculate Heart. It can be worn as a reminder of the promise we have made to Mary.

"I am the Lady of the Rosary" are the words the Mother of God used to identify herself to the shepherd children of Fatima. Repeatedly during Our Lady's series of apparitions, she emphasized praying the Rosary daily and "to pray the Rosary well," with meditation on the mysteries. The Queen of Heaven held out the Rosary to all of mankind as a means of obtaining the salvation of souls, the conversion of sinners, true world peace, and the conversion of Russia.

Let us use this spiritual treasure and pray the Rosary every day for Our Lady's intentions and for our own.

Our Lady of Fatima, Saint Jacinta, Saint Francisco and Blessed Lucia, we entrust all the names we receive through this ministry to your loving care.

February 19, 2018

Reflection: Follow Me

Jesus saw a tax collector named Levi sitting at the customs post. He said to him, "Follow Me." And leaving everything behind, he got up and followed Him. Luke 5:27-28

Imagine how Levi felt when Jesus called him! Tax collectors were sinners, disdained by the people. When Jesus called him, he left everything behind and followed Him.

When you have an encounter with Jesus, you are forever changed. Jesus is calling you. Will you respond like Levi?

We are all sinners but Jesus came to redeem us, to heal and restore us. We are in the season of Lent, a beautiful time to turn to Jesus and follow Him. Jesus is pointing to you.

Your people shall rebuild the ancient ruins; the foundations from ages past You shall raise up; "Repairer of the breach, they shall call You; Restorer of ruined dwellings."  Isaiah 58:12

Have you turned away from God? When you abandon God and stop receiving the Sacraments, your soul suffers. As with Levi, sin damages your soul and breaks your relationship with God. When you sin, you turn your back on God, but God always provides a way to return to Him.

To the penitent, God provides a way back. He encourages those who are losing hope and has chosen for them the lot of Truth. Sirach 17:24

God gave us the Sacrament of Reconciliation where we confess our sins and to restore our souls. Jesus is the "Repairer of the breach, Restorer of ruined dwellings."  Turn to Him and He will repair the breach between you and Him and He will restore your soul.  Our souls were created for eternal life with our Father. Our Creator infused a soul into our bodies and He gave us a guardian angel to protect and guide us along the way.

God loves you so much. In confession, Jesus is there, waiting to pour out His grace and mercy upon you. Receive this Sacrament often and you will come to recognize your sins more easily and you will come to know yourself better. He will restore your soul.

"Confession is an act of honesty and courage, an act of entrusting ourselves, beyond sin, to the mercy of a loving and forgiving God."  Saint John Paul II

Jesus pours His grace, light and love upon you when you confess your sins. It is Divine Mercy for your soul. Bring your miseries and sufferings to confession and the priest will speak words of healing for your soul. After you have made your confession, the priest will absolve your sins. He will tell you to go in peace and to sin no more. In the Sacrament of Reconciliation, we receive forgiveness of sins, mercy, healing and grace.

Go to Mass and receive the Eucharist often. When you receive the Body and Blood of Christ, Jesus comes to you in the most profound and intimate way. His Body is in your body. Jesus heals and strengthen you when you receive Him in the Eucharist.

Make a promise to Jesus that you will go to Mass, receive the Eucharist and go to confession often and ask your guardian angel and Our Lady to help you keep your promise. They will accompany you...

The Lord is my Shepherd, there is nothing I shall want. In green pastures, He makes me lie down; to still waters, He leads me; He restores my soul. He guides me along right paths for the sake of His Name. Psalm 23:1-3

February 14, 2018

Reflection: Ash Wednesday...Lent begins...

Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the season of Lent.

What will you do for Jesus during these 40 days? 

Lent is a time to renew our minds and hearts. It's more than giving up things. It is making Jesus the center of our lives. It is a time of "dying to self" and growing in love and virtue.

The Gospel of Matthew teaches us about Almsgiving, Prayer and Fasting:

Teaching about Almsgiving  Matthew 6:1-4
Take care not to perform righteous deeds in order that people may see them; otherwise, you will have no recompense from your heavenly Father. When you give alms, do not blow a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets to win the praise of others. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right is doing, so that your almsgiving may be secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you.

Teaching about Prayer  Matthew 6:5-15
When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, who love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on street corners so that others may see them. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you pray, go to your inner room, close the door, and pray to your Father in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you. In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them. Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

The Lord’s Prayer

This is how you are to pray:

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.  Give us today our daily bread; and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors; and do not subject us to the final test, but deliver us from the evil one. If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions.

Teaching about Fasting  Matthew 6:16-18
When you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites. They neglect their appearance, so that they may appear to others to be fasting. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you may not appear to be fasting, except to your Father who is hidden. And your Father who sees what is hidden will repay you.

Treasure in Heaven  Matthew 6:19-21
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and decay destroy, and thieves break in and steal. But store up treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor decay destroys, nor thieves break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.

What will you do for Jesus these 40 days of Lent?

Let us pray and fast and ask our Mother Mary to make our hearts like hers and to show us what we can do for Jesus during these 40 days.  

February 11, 2018

Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us!

I am the Immaculate Conception.

Our Lady of Lourdes appeared to Bernadette Soubirous, a fourteen year-old girl in Lourdes, France on February 11, 1858. The Blessed Mother told Bernadette to drink from the fountain within the grotto. This fountain was unknown and there was no sign of its location. Bernadette scratched the ground and a spring gushed forth from the spot from which she was asked to build a chapel. This is where The Blessed Mother proclaimed that she was the Immaculate Conception.

Since Our Lady appeared to Bernadette, Lourdes has been a site for miracles. There have been 67 miracles from the site that have been proven scientifically inexplicable. Mount Saint Mary's Grotto of Lourdes was built two decades after the apparitions of Mary to Bernadette. The grotto at Lourdes is a place of miracles, healings, laying on of priestly hands, and blessings for the sick.

Bernadette entered the convent of the Sisters of Notre Dame in Nevers in 1866, serving our Lord with dignity, grace, and love in her short life. She passed away from tuberculosis in 1879 and was canonized as a saint in 1933. To this day, her body remains incorruptible, showing no signs of decomposition or decay, a sign of the miracles associated with her.

Saint Bernadette once said of the spring she discovered that “one must have faith and pray; the water will have no virtue without faith.” Let us all be inspired by this prayer to Our Lady of Lourdes approach her with faith, hope and love!

Mary, you showed yourself to Bernadette in the crevice of the rock. In the cold and grey of winter, you brought the warmth, light and beauty of your presence. In the often obscure depths of our lives, in the depth of the world where evil is so powerful, bring hope, return our confidence!

You are the Immaculate Conception, come to our aid, sinners that we are. Give us the humility to have a change of heart, the courage to do penance. Teach us to pray for all people. Guide us to the source of true life. Make us pilgrims going forward with your Church, whet our appetite for the Eucharist, the Bread for the journey, the Bread of Life.

The Spirit brought about wonders in you, O Mary, by His power, He has placed you near the Father, in the glory of your eternal Son. Look with kindness on our miserable bodies and hearts. Shine forth for us, like a gentle light, at the hour of our death.

Together with Bernadette, we pray to you, O Mary, as your poor children. May we enter, like her, into the spirit of the Beatitudes. Then, we will be able, here below, begin to know the joy of the Kingdom of Heaven and sing together with you: Magnificat!

Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us.
Saint Bernadette, pray for us.

February 10, 2018

Reflection: Ephphatha! Be opened!

And people brought to Him a deaf man with a speech impediment and begged Him to lay His hand on him. He took him off by Himself away from the crowd. He put His fingers into the man's ears and, spitting, touched his tongue; then He looked up to heaven and groaned, and said to him, "Ephphatha!" that is "Be opened!" And immediately the man's ears were opened, his speech impediment was removed and he spoke plainly. Mark 7:32-35

During the Sacrament of Baptism, the priest or deacon prays the Ephphatha Prayer and touches the ears and mouth of the child with his thumb, saying: "The Lord Jesus made the deaf hear and the dumb speak. May He soon touch your ears to receive His Word, and your mouth to proclaim His faith, to the praise and glory of God the Father."

How beautiful that through Baptism, we become a child of God and Jesus opens our ears to hear His Word and He opens our mouth to proclaim His Word!

Imagine what it would be like to be deaf. If you are deaf, imagine what it would be like to hear. In today's world, there are many ways for the deaf to communicate with sign language, speech therapy, hearing aids and through the aid of computers.  When Jesus came, the world was a very different place for those who were deaf. Their lives were silent and lonely and isolated.

Jesus first took the man away from the crowd so He could speak directly to him. Imagine what this meant for the man who had been so isolated and lonely. Then He touched him. For someone who is lonely, touch is healing and breaks the isolation. This intimate moment changed everything. Then Jesus spit and touched the man's tongue. The saliva of Jesus and His touch opened up the man's ears and his speech and also his heart. Surely, the man was healed of loneliness. After he prayed, Jesus spoke the word "Ephphatha, Be opened."  Immediately, the man was healed.

The deaf man was blessed that the people in the community cared about him. They brought him to Jesus and begged Jesus to heal him. He could not speak for himself so they brought him to Jesus. The deaf man was blessed by friends. I have been blessed by friends who pray with me and for me. When we are unable to pray, the Lord sends people to us, people who have us covered. This was a great blessing for the deaf man and it has been a great blessing to me.

Jesus wants to have this kind of intimate encounter with you. Once you have an intimate encounter with Jesus, everything changes. Come to Him. Come away to a quiet place and listen. Let Him speak in the silence. Ask the Father and the Holy Spirit to open your heart. Ask Mary to be with you. She will draw you into an intimate encounter with Jesus and He will heal you and you will know how much He loves you.

Come away to a secluded place and rest awhile. Mark 6:31 

February 06, 2018

Reflection: O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us and protect us from evil

Prayer to Our Blessed Mother Mary for assistance in the Spiritual Battle  From a book of prayers titled, "The Lion Roars, Prayers for the Remnant" by Dave VanVickle

"O Mary, conceived without sin! O Woman clothed with the Sun! Come now and intercede for us in this battle against evil. You who are despised and feared by the father of lies, help us powerfully. You whose beauty is so bright, so pure that devils tremble in fear, help us powerfully. You who strike at the head of the old serpent, the devil, help us powerfully. O Mary whose name is so sweet, come and cover us with your protective mantle and protect us in this battle with evil. O humble Woman, vanquish the evil one. O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee."

For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens.  Ephesians 6:12  

How can you protect yourself and your loved ones from evil?

Daily Mass, Eucharist, Frequent Confession, Eucharistic Adoration, Prayer, Fasting, Pray the Rosary and Chaplet of Divine Mercy Daily, The Lord's Prayer, The Hail Mary, The Memorare, Prayer to St. Michael, the Archangel, Guardian Angel Prayer, House Blessing, Crucifix, Holy Water, Blessed Salt, Scapular, Miraculous Medal

I will put enmities between you (satan) and the woman, and your seed and her seed; she shall crush your head, and you shall lie in wait for her heel.  Genesis 3:15

O Mary, conceived without sin, our most powerful intercessor, bless and protect our families from evil and pray for us who have recourse to thee.

February 02, 2018

The Presentation of the Lord

Today is the Feast of the Presentation, often called Candlemas, which took place 40 days after the birth of Jesus, as Jewish law required. Mary and Joseph took Jesus to Jerusalem because every firstborn child was to be dedicated to the Lord. Simeon saw Mary and Joseph enter the temple and immediately recognized Jesus, the Savior he had been waiting for. In the presence of Anna, the prophetess, Simeon, upon seeing the Messiah, gave thanks to the Lord.

Today is also World Day for Consecrated Life. On this day, the candles are blessed, symbolizing Christ, the Light of the world. By their profession of vows, consecrated men and women are called to be this Light of Christ in the world.  Let us pray for all those who have consecrated their lives to Christ that they will be filled with His Light that they may draw others into His Light and Love by the witness of their lives.

Luke 2:25-35  Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, awaiting the consolation of Israel, and the holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Messiah of the Lord. He came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform the custom of the law in regard to him, he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying: "Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in sight of all the peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel." The child's father and mother were amazed at what was said about him; and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, "Behold, this child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be contradicted and you yourself a sword will pierce so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed."

Ave Maris Stella Traditionally sung at the first Vespers of Candlemas
Hail, Star of the Sea, Blessed Mother of God, yet ever a Virgin! O Happy Gate of heaven. Thou that didst receive the Ave from Gabriel's lips, confirm us in peace, and so let Eva be changed into an Ave of blessing for us. Loose the sinner's chains, bring light to the blind, drive from us our evils, and ask all good things for us. Show thyself a Mother, and offer our prayers to Him, who would be born of thee, when born for us. O incomparable Virgin, and meekest of the meek, obtain us the forgiveness of our sins, and make us meek and chaste. Obtain us purity of life, and a safe pilgrimage; That we may be united with thee, in the blissful vision of Jesus. Praise be to God the Father, and to the Lord Jesus and to the Holy Spirit: to the three one self-same praise. Amen

O Mary, Star of the Sea, you carried the light of the world in your arms. Help us, O Most Loving Mother, to turn to the Light of the World, your Beloved Son Jesus.

January 31, 2018

Reflection: The Glory of God

The Glory of God is man fully alive. Saint Irenaeus

My church is one of the most beautiful churches you could ever see but the beauty of the church is currently hidden. The interior is in the process of being restored. The cracks in the walls are being repaired and the church is being painted. In order to restore the church, elaborate scaffolding has been erected so the painters can reach the heights of the church. 

Jesus took Peter, James and John and led them up a high mountain apart by themselves and He was transfigured before them, and His clothes became dazzling white, such as no fuller on earth could bleach them.  Mark 9:2-3

Jesus appeared to them as the Light in dazzling white. On either side of Him, Moses and Elijah appeared. The Father’s voice spoke that this was His Beloved Son in whom He was well pleased. The Holy Spirit appeared as a cloud of glory.

The Transfiguration was an experience that did not last very long. Peter wanted to erect tents and stay there, but that was not the purpose. Jesus gave them this experience to build up their hope so that they would have strength for the sufferings to come. Through the Transfiguration, Jesus gave Peter, James and John a glimpse of eternal life.

As I look at the scaffolding in my church, I think about how it takes time to restore buildings. There can be many surprises and twists and turns along the way. Throughout all the stages of the restoration, little by little, the repairs are made and the building made anew. When the restoration is complete, the beauty of my church will no longer be hidden by the scaffolding. As we come there to pray and worship, we will, once again, see the Glory of God in the beauty all around us.

The same is true for souls. Our souls are hidden, unseen by others. Jesus knows the scars and wounds of our souls. As we pray and turn to Him, He restores our souls. Make time to be with Him and draw close in silent prayer in Eucharistic adoration or before the tabernacle in a chapel. As you spend time with Him, He will transform you and restore your soul. Take your pain, sufferings, miseries, worries and fears and place them on the altar. Jesus is waiting to give you hope and healing. Jesus will make you a new creation. He made you for eternal life and He wants to give you glimpses of it here. Invite Jesus into the home of your heart and rest with Him that He may share His Glory with you.

The heavens declare the Glory of God; the firmament proclaims the works of His hands. Psalm 19:2

January 27, 2018

Reflection: Jesus woke up, rebuked the wind and said to the sea, "Quiet! Be still!"

Jesus was in the boat with the disciples when a violent storm rose up. The boat was filling up with water and Jesus was asleep.  The disciples were terrified and woke Him up.

Jesus woke up, rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, "Quiet! Be still!" Mark 4:39

Have you ever been in a situation where you felt frightened and without hope?

Sit with Jesus and recall that situation in your life. As the memories come into your mind, notice the feelings that rise up in you and speak to Him about what you are experiencing. Cry out to Him and express your fear and hopelessness.

Out of the depths, I call to You, Lord; Lord, hear my cry! May Your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy! Psalm 130:1-2

When storms arise in your life, call upon Jesus and tell Him what you are afraid of. Out of the depths of your heart, cry out to Him. Allow Jesus to touch you and rebuke your fears. Trust in Jesus and He will bring a great calm upon you. Jesus will give you hope.

Ponder the words, "The wind ceased and there was a great calm." The disciples were in awe and wondered who Jesus is that even the wind and the sea obey Him. Jesus is your friend and He will calm you. He wants to be with you intimately. Sit in His Presence and open your heart to Him. Every time you have an encounter with Jesus, you are changed. He is calling you to come to Him...

Be still and know that I am God.  Psalm 46:10

Jesus is our hope, our strength and our comforter.

Cast your care upon the Lord who will give you support.  Psalm 55:23

January 25, 2018

Reflection: The Lord said to Ananias about Saul, "Go, for this man is a chosen instrument of Mine..."

The story of Saint Paul is the story of God's love being poured into his heart. Saul persecuted the Church without mercy. When Jesus came to Saul, from the sky, a light flashed around him. Jesus said, "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?" Saul asked who was speaking and the voice said, "I am Jesus, the Nazorean, whom you are persecuting." Saul knew that Jesus had died yet Jesus was speaking to him. Saul was persecuting His followers.

In an instant, Saul was forever changed. Immediately, upon hearing the voice, Saul could not see because He was blinded by the light. His friends led him and he could not see for three days. Then the Lord sent Ananias to lay hands on Saul. He regained his sight and was baptized. The Lord gave Saul three days of blindness as He worked on Saul's heart. Saul was transformed into Saint Paul because Jesus showered him with His love and mercy. Saul was the chosen instrument of Jesus.

Acts 9:15-19  But the Lord said to him, “Go, for this man is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before Gentiles, kings, and children of Israel, and I will show him what he will have to suffer for my name.” So Ananias went and entered the house; laying his hands on him, he said, “Saul, my brother, the Lord has sent me, Jesus who appeared to you on the way by which you came, that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”  Immediately things like scales fell from his eyes and he regained his sight. He got up and was baptized, and when he had eaten, he recovered his strength.

When you have an encounter with Jesus, you are always changed. Turn to Jesus and He will restore your soul through the Sacrament of Reconciliation and strengthen you with the Eucharist. Jesus will show you the way. He is the Way and the Truth and the Life. He shines light and scatters the darkness. He gives us the Bread of Life, the Eucharist, to strengthen, heal and nourish us.

You are God's chosen instrument, just as Saint Paul. In the darkness of the world today, you will be called to stand up and speak the truth, to be God's witness. 

Jesus will entrust souls to you, souls He wants you to pray for. Offer prayers, fast and make sacrifices for the person you are praying for. Never give up praying for the conversion of a soul. Jesus has entrusted that soul to you and He hears your prayers.