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Pentecost VIII

Daily Sermons
July 9 – Bp. Dolan – St. Maria Goretti
July 11 – Bp. Dolan – The Adventure of Holiness
July 23 – Fr. McKenna – St. Apollinaris
July 24 – Fr. McKenna – Temptations Against Purity
August 1 – Bp. Dolan – For Our Home-school Graduates

✠ The Bishop’s Corner ✠
Our August has its first Sunday today, commemorating a wonderful miracle whereby the Holy Ghost promoted devotion to St. Stephen, the protomartyr, as well as to relics; his relics in particular. The devotions of the Church all seem to have their time and season, but are always timely. How blessed we are to possess so many relics of the saints, saved from the general destruction which followed the revolution of Vatican II. They are honored on our altars all year round.

Be sure to visit August’s elegant altar to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, in silver and copper and blue, in the Baptistery chapel. Make a shrine to Mary’s Heart, sorrowful and immaculate, in your own heart and home. This is the Heaven-mandated devotion for our day, surely the key for our peace and protection, and most timely today.

What a tinderbox the Holy Land has been for so long, since the last century, with warring Zionists and displaced Palestinians. Poor Ukraine is suffering still at the murderous hands of recycled Communists, as Russia tries to match our empire building. Meanwhile, most of the Middle East’s Christians have trickled away; blown up, murdered, or refugees for their lives. Our erstwhile allies have done this, and now are dynamiting the churches the Christians must leave behind.

Surely it is time for each of us to take seriously Heaven’s Peace Plan and our place at the negotiating table: the family table for daily Rosary after supper, and the Communion table, or rail, for Holy Communion in reparation to Mary’s Immaculate Heart.

It is 100 years since the wars began. They have never stopped yet. One war begets the next. One day our turn must surely come unless we too do penance. One hundred years ago this month, August 21, 1914, St. Pius X died of grief because his pleas against the “Great War” went unheeded. He knew the evils this war would unleash. A few years later, Heaven sent Mary Herself with a plan to stop the wars. Her pleas, too, went largely unheeded, even in Rome itself.

Let’s make this anniversary August count for peace: more weekday Masses and Communions, daily Rosary at home, hidden little sacrifices along with our hidden scapular, each day; a great turnout for the Fatima Rosary Procession for peace on Wednesday, August 13th, and great crowds and beautiful Masses for Mary’s greatest feast, her Assumption, August 15th, as well as for Friday, August 22nd, the feast of her Immaculate Heart.

This past week was a busy one at St. Gertrude the Great, as we all did our schedules and planning, readied the church for August, and opened the month with First Friday, a homeschoolers’ graduation Mass, and All Night Adoration. Fr. Cekada was working on reformatting our Web Mass at the SGGResources.org page (click the “Live Mass Webcasts” link at the top of the page), as well as updating fathercekada.com with an article of mine on what to do when there is no Mass to attend. Fr. Lehtoranta was writing an interesting account of his European mission work. The McFathers were finishing up their visits to the sick, as well as one to Toledo for prisoner Joseph Murphy. Fr. McGuire and Fr. McKenna will be leaving this evening for a Summer vacation visit to La France Sacré. I know they will remember to pray for us at the many shrines on their itinerary. They will also be visiting the Sisters at Donzy, and Fr. Hecquard and his family near Tours.

We had a lot of grounds help this past week, and I do think we may finally be winning our war with the weeds. Our soil, like our soul, demands constant attention. I hope to go into August with everything looking nice for the procession on the Assumption. Thanks for your help. Even visitors pitched in, and old timers came back to help. It is appreciated.

As it is, everything is feeling nice with the unwonted spate of such fine Summer weather. The surviving bunnies (Caravaggio delivered another one the other morning; “freaky fast,” Fr. Cekada says) and the robins seem to be enjoying it as well. I see them each evening on the green lawn on my way to the rectory, hopping about (the animals, not the Bishop) and again in early morning.

Join us for our traditional Mass before the Blessed Sacrament exposed on Wednesday, the Transfiguration. It is a feast of faith, of adoration, thanksgiving for a great victory over the Moslems at Belgrade, as well as the sad anniversary of the bombing of Nagasaki, the most Catholic city of Japan.

I end with the same theme with which I began. If you do no more than pray a little extra for “peace in our day,” your month will be well spent.

May Mary take you and yours in her heart for safekeeping.
– Bishop Dolan