The Surrender Novena

The Surrender Novena

Father Don Dolindo Ruotolo (1882-1970)

 

Day 1

Why do you confuse yourselves by worrying?

Leave the care of your affairs to me and everything will be peaceful.

I say to you in truth that every act of true, blind, complete surrender to me produces the effect that you desire and resolves all difficult situations.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10x)

 

Day 2

Surrender to me does not mean to fret, to be upset, or to lose hope, nor does it mean offering to me a worried prayer asking me to follow you and change your worry into prayer.

It is against this surrender, deeply against it, to worry, to be nervous and to desire to think about the consequences of anything.

It is like the confusion that children feel when they ask their mother to see to their needs, and then try to take care of those needs for themselves so that their childlike efforts get in their mother’s way.

Surrender means to placidly close the eyes of the soul, to turn away from thoughts of tribulation and to put yourself in my care, so that only I act.

Saying You take care of it.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (x10)

 

Day 3

How many things I do when the soul,

in so much spiritual and material need turns to me, looks at me and says to me;

“You take care of it,” then close its eyes and rests.

In pain you pray for me to act, but that I act in the way you want.

You do not turn to me, instead, you want me to adapt to your ideas.

You are not sick people who ask the doctor to cure you, but rather sick people who tell the doctor how to.

So do not act this way, but pray as I taught you in the Our Father:

“Hallowed be thy Name”, that is, be glorified in my need.

“Thy kingdom come”, that is, let all that is in us and in the world be in accord with your kingdom.

“Thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven”, that is, in our need, decide as you see fit for our temporal and eternal life.

If you say to me truly:

“Thy will be done” which is the same as saying:

“You take care of it”

I will intervene with all my omnipotence, and I will resolve the most difficult situations.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (x10)

 

Day 4

You see evil growing instead of weakening?

Do not worry,

Close your eyes and say to me with faith:

“Thy will be done, You take care of it.”

I say to you that I will take care of it, and that I will intervene as does a doctor and I will accomplish miracles when they are needed.

Do you see that the sick person is getting worse?

Do not be upset, but close your eyes and say

“You take care of it.”

I say to you that I will take care of it, and that there is no medicine more powerful than my loving intervention.

By my love, I promise this to you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (x10)

 

Day 5

And when I must lead you on a path different from the one you see,

I will prepare you;

I will carry you in my arms;

I will let you find yourself, like children who have fallen asleep in their mother’s arms, on the other bank of the river.

What troubles you and hurts you immensely are your reason, your thoughts and worry, and your desire at all costs to deal with what afflicts you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (x10)

 

Day 6

You are sleepless; you want to judge everything, direct everything and see to everything and you surrender to human strength, or worse - to men themselves, trusting in their intervention- this is what hinders my words and my views.

Oh how much I wish from you this surrender, to help you and how I suffer when I see you so agitated!

Satan tries to do exactly this: to agitate you and to remove you from my protection and to throw you into the jaws of human initiative.

So, trust only in me, rest in me, surrender to me in everything.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (x10)

 

Day 7

I perform miracles in proportion to your full surrender to me and to your not thinking of yourselves.

I sow treasure troves of graces when you are in the deepest poverty.

No person of reason, no thinker, has ever performed miracles, not even among the saints.

He does divine works whosoever surrenders to God.

So don’t think about it any more, because your mind is acute and for you it is very hard to see evil and to trust in me and to not think of yourself.

Do this for all your needs, do this all of you and you will see great continual silent miracles. I will take care of things, I promise this to you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (x10)

 

Day 8

Close your eyes and let yourself be carried away on the flowing current of my grace; close your eyes and do not think of the present, turning your thoughts away from the future just as you would from temptation.

Repose in me, believing in my goodness, and I promise you by my love that if you say

"You take care of it,” I will take care of it all; I will console you, liberate you and guide you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (x10)

 

Day 9

Pray always in readiness to surrender, and you will receive from it great peace and great rewards, even when I confer on you the grace of immolation, of repentance and of love.

Then what does suffering matter? It seems impossible to you? Close your eyes and say with all your soul, “Jesus, you take care of it.” Do not be afraid, I will take care of things and you will bless my name by humbling yourself.

A thousand prayers cannot equal one single act of surrender, remember this well. There is no novena more effective than this:

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (x10)

 

 

St Juliana Book Club

I'm starting a new Saint Juliana Book Club. The goal is to read a book every month or so.


 

April 2020 Selection

The Power and the Glory by Graham Greene

Called by John Updike, “Graham Greene’s masterpiece,” The Power and the Glory, tells the story of an early 20th Century rural Mexico where Catholicism has been outlawed.  The last priest, known as ‘the whiskey priest,’ seeks to bring the faith to a suppressed people while eluding authorities who seek to capture and kill him.  Written in 1941, the novel received the Hawthornden Prize in British literature and was chosen by TIME magazine as one of the 100 best novels of the 20th Century. 

Please obtain a copy of the book yourself.  For those interested and able, we will meet to discuss the book on Saturday, April 4th at 9:30am in the back meeting room of the Saint Juliana Parish Center, located at 7200 N. Osceola Avenue, Chicago.  If you cannot make the meeting, you are still encouraged to read the book!

Save the Date: Our next book will be A Man Called Ove by Frederick  to be discussed on May 2nd.

May 2020 Selection

A Man Called Ove by Frederick Backman

Written in 2012 by Swedish author Frederick Backman, A Man Called Ove was the #1 New York Times Bestseller, remaining on the list for 42 weeks.  Ove, a severe curmudgeon, finds his world and personality changed by the arrival of new neighbors.  This delightful, charming story will not only uplift the reader, but will provide, according to a review, “a gentle reminder that life is sweeter when it is shared with other people.”

Please obtain a copy of the book yourself.  For those interested and able, we will meet to discuss the book on Saturday, May 2nd at 9:30am in the back meeting room of the Saint Juliana Parish Center, located at 7200 N. Osceola Avenue, Chicago.  If you cannot make the meeting, you are still encouraged to read the book!

 

March 2020 Selection

Our next book will be The Road  by Cormac McCarthy, to be discussed on Saturday, March 7th at 9:30am in the parish center.

A national bestseller and winner of the Pulitzer Prize, The Road is a post-apocalyptic story of father and son. The book, according to a review on Amazon, "boldly imagines a future in which no hope remains, but in which the father and his son, ‘each the other's world entire,’ are sustained by love. Awesome in the totality of its vision, it is an unflinching meditation on the worst and the best that we are capable of: ultimate destructiveness, desperate tenacity, and the tenderness that keeps two people alive in the face of total devastation."

Please obtain a copy of the book yourself. For those interested and able, we will meet to discuss the book on Saturday, March 7th at 9:30am in the back meeting room of the Saint Juliana Parish Center, located at 7200 N. Osceola Avenue, Chicago. If you cannot make the meeting, you are still encouraged to read the book!

February 2020 Selection

Our inaugural book will be The Devil’s Advocate by Morris West.  A novel written in 1959, the story follows a dying English priest sent by the Vatican to investigate an individual being proposed for sainthood.  The book sold over three million copies, received several awards, and was staged on Broadway.  The New York Times called it “a reading experience of real emotional intensity.”Please obtain a copy of the book yourself.  For those interested and able, we will meet to discuss the book on Saturday, February 1st at 9:30am in the parish center.


 

 

FEAST OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST THE KING

Christ the King Sunday celebrates the all-embracing authority of Christ as King and Lord of all things. Officially called “The Feast of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King,” it is celebrated on the final Sunday of Ordinary Time, the Sunday before Advent.

Pope Pius XI instituted The Feast of Christ the King in 1925 for the universal church in his encyclical Quas Primas. He connected the increasing denial of Christ as king to the rise of secularism throughout Europe. At the time of Quas Primas, many Christians (including Catholics) began to doubt Christ’s authority and existence, as well as the Church’s power to continue Christ’s authority.

Pius hoped the institution of the feast would have various effects. They were:

1. That nations would see that the Church has the right to freedom, and immunity from the state (Quas Primas, 32).

2. That leaders and nations would see that they are bound to give respect to Christ (Quas Primas, 31).

3. That the faithful would gain strength and courage from the celebration of the feast, as we are reminded that Christ must reign in our hearts, minds, wills, and bodies (Quas Primas, 33).

When we celebrate Christ as King, we are not celebrating an oppressive ruler, but one willing to die for humanity and whose “loving-kindness endures forever.” Christ is the king that gives us true freedom, freedom in Him. Thus we must never forget that Christ radically redefined and transformed the concept of kingship.

All Souls Day

All Souls’ Day, is a day for commemoration of all the faithful departed, those baptized Christians who are believed to be in purgatory because they died with the guilt of lesser sins on their souls. It is observed on November 2. Roman Catholic doctrine holds that the prayers of the faithful on earth will help cleanse these souls in order to fit them for the vision of God in heaven, and the day is dedicated to prayer and remembrance. Requiem masses are commonly held, and many people visit and sometimes decorate the graves of loved ones.

Read more...

All Saints Day

Early History of Memorials for Martyrs and Saints

From the earliest days of the Church, Christians venerated martyrs on the anniversary of their deaths by celebrating Mass on their tombs. Over the next few centuries relics began to be transferred between dioceses and memorials for several martyrs were celebrated in common. During the persecutions of Diocletian in the early 300's so many Christians were killed that it became impossible to create separate memorials for each so joint memorials became common.

In the late 300s St. Basil the Great sent a letter to the bishops of Pontus inviting them to celebrate a common feast in honor of the martyrs.

The earliest record of a feast honoring all Christian martyrs  is from a homily of St. John Crysostom in the 407 saying that there was a feast celebrated in Constantinople.

All Saints Day in the Western Church

The first official recognition of a feast for all martyrs and the Virgin Mary comes in 609 or 610 on May 13th when St. Boniface IV concecrated the Pantheon as a church. The Pantheon had been given to the Church as a gift from Emperor Phocas. The feast coincided with the conclusion of the Pagan feast of Lemures which was celebrated to appease restless spirits.

Pope Gregory III (731-741) dedicated a chapel in St. Peter's Basilica to all saints during his reign. Louis the Pious made the celebration obligatory in the Frankish empire in 835 and Pope Gregory IV  officially declared that the Feast of All Saints Day was to be celebrated by the whole Church on November 1st in 837.

The octave of All Saints was added during the reign of Pope Sixtus IV (1471-1484).

The Feast of All Saints is a holy day of obligation in the Catholic Church.

All Saints Day in the Eastern Church

In the Eastern Church the feast followed an ancient tradition of celebrating a feast for all saints on the first Sunday following Pentecost. The feast gained “official” status during the reign of the Byzantine Emperor Leo VI (886-911). He built a church for his holy wife Empress Theophano and when told he couldn't dedicate it to her, dedicated it to “All Saints” in the hope that she might some day be named a saint and therefore be celebrated in the church.

The second Sunday following Pentecost is reserved for honoring local groups of saints.

All Saints in Architecture

The Pantheon in Rome was originally a Roman temple dedicated to all the gods. In 609 the Byzantine Emperor Phocas gave the temple to Pope Boniface IV who rededicated as the church of St. Mary and the Martyrs. Many remains of Christians who originally had been buried in the catacombs were transferred to the church and placed under the altar.

The Pantheon - Church of All Saints

All Saints in Music

Here is a traditional recitation of the Litany of All Saints.

 

All Saints Day

Early History of Memorials for Martyrs and Saints

From the earliest days of the Church, Christians venerated martyrs on the anniversary of their deaths by celebrating Mass on their tombs. Over the next few centuries relics began to be transferred between dioceses and memorials for several martyrs were celebrated in common. During the persecutions of Diocletian in the early 300's so many Christians were killed that it became impossible to create separate memorials for each so joint memorials became common.

In the late 300s St. Basil the Great sent a letter to the bishops of Pontus inviting them to celebrate a common feast in honor of the martyrs.

The earliest record of a feast honoring all Christian martyrs  is from a homily of St. John Crysostom in the 407 saying that there was a feast celebrated in Constantinople.

All Saints Day in the Western Church

The first official recognition of a feast for all martyrs and the Virgin Mary comes in 609 or 610 on May 13th when St. Boniface IV concecrated the Pantheon as a church. The Pantheon had been given to the Church as a gift from Emperor Phocas. The feast coincided with the conclusion of the Pagan feast of Lemures which was celebrated to appease restless spirits.

Pope Gregory III (731-741) dedicated a chapel in St. Peter's Basilica to all saints during his reign. Louis the Pious made the celebration obligatory in the Frankish empire in 835 and Pope Gregory IV  officially declared that the Feast of All Saints Day was to be celebrated by the whole Church on November 1st in 837.

The octave of All Saints was added during the reign of Pope Sixtus IV (1471-1484).

The Feast of All Saints is a holy day of obligation in the Catholic Church.

All Saints Day in the Eastern Church

In the Eastern Church the feast followed an ancient tradition of celebrating a feast for all saints on the first Sunday following Pentecost. The feast gained “official” status during the reign of the Byzantine Emperor Leo VI (886-911). He built a church for his holy wife Empress Theophano and when told he couldn't dedicate it to her, dedicated it to “All Saints” in the hope that she might some day be named a saint and therefore be celebrated in the church.

The second Sunday following Pentecost is reserved for honoring local groups of saints.

All Saints in Architecture

The Pantheon in Rome was originally a Roman temple dedicated to all the gods. In 609 the Byzantine Emperor Phocas gave the temple to Pope Boniface IV who rededicated as the church of St. Mary and the Martyrs. Many remains of Christians who originally had been buried in the catacombs were transferred to the church and placed under the altar.

The Pantheon - Church of All Saints

The Feast of the Assumption of Mary

"On November 1, 1950, Pope Pius XII solemnly proclaimed as a divinely revealed truth "that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever-virgin Mary, on the completion of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heaven."

By the fifth century, August fifteenth was kept at Jerusalem as the Commemoration of the Mother of God. In the sixth century the feast of Mary's Falling Asleep spread throughout the East Finally in the eighth century the day was celebrated as the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

"For Roman Catholic Christians, the belief in the Assumption of Mary flows immediately from the belief in her Immaculate Conception. Catholic Christians believe that if Mary was preserved from sin by the free gift of God, she would not be bound to experience the consequences of sin—death—in the same way we do. Mary's assumption shows the result of this freedom from sin—the immediate union of her whole being with her Son Jesus Christ with God at the end of her life." 

The Encyclical Munificentissimus Deus, before defining the dogma, reviewed the increasing awareness of this truth over the centuries, recalled the words of Holy Scripture which the fathers and theologians used to support their considerations and underlined this dogma's harmony with many other truths of the faith, such as Christ's resurrection and our own." Lives of the Saints, Augustine Kalberer, O.S.B.

"Hence the revered Mother of God, from all eternity joined in a hidden way with Jesus Christ in one and the same decree of predestination, immaculate in her conception, a most perfect virgin in her divine motherhood, the noble associate of the divine Redeemer who has won a complete triumph over sin and its consequences, finally obtained, as the supreme culmination of her privileges, that she should be preserved free from the corruption of the tomb and that, like her own Son, having overcome death, she might be taken up body and soul to the glory of heaven where, as Queen, she sits in splendor at the right hand of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages." — Munificentissimus Deus, Pope Pius XII 

Munificentissimus Deus

Deiparae Virginis Mariae

Homily on the Solemnity of the Assumption

Called, Like Mary, to Be Filled with God's Word

"Mary's Immaculate Body was, in a sense, the origin of sanctification of all mankind. Her flesh was used to form the flesh of her Son; the flesh which he used on the Cross to destroy death and sin, and which he gave to us that we might rise from the dead. Was this flesh, Mary's flesh, Christ's flesh, the instrument of our redemption and resurrection, to be subject to the corruption of the grave?" — Rev. James M. Keane, O.S.M.

"The womb that bore Jesus Christ, the hands that caressed him, the arms that embraced him, the breasts that nourished him, the heart that so loved him — it is impossible to think that these crumbled into dust." — Father Canice, OFM Cap. 

The Assumption of Our Lady

Mary's Death and Bodily Assumption

The Vatican Council on the Assumption of Our Lady

Her Assumption Befits the Mother of God

"The spiritual powers receive her with honors due to God,
and she who is truly the Mother of Life departs unto life,
the lamp of Light which no man can approach, the salvation
of the faithful and the hope of our souls (The Feast of Dormition, Great Vespers, Lete, Tone 2*)."

"A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon was under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars."

Hymn of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Crown of Twelve Stars

Beautiful, Glorious

Salve Regina

Novena Prayer for the Assumption of the Virgin Mary

Novena for the Solemnity of the Assumption

 

 

Feast of Corpus Christi

 

The Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, historically known by its Latin name, Corpus Christi, celebrates the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist—Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity. It is traditionally celebrated on the Thursday following the Solemnity of the Holy Trinity. The feast dates to the Middle Ages and originated with a visionary nun and a Eucharistic miracle.

THE STORY

In 1263 a German priest, Fr. Peter of Prague, made a pilgrimage to Rome. He stopped in Bolsena, Italy, to celebrate Mass at the Church of St. Christina. At the time he was having doubts about Jesus being truly present in the Blessed Sacrament. He was affected by the growing debate among certain theologians who, for the first time in the history of the Church, began introducing doubts about the Body and Blood of Christ being actually present in the consecrated bread and wine. In response to his doubt, when he recited the prayer of consecration as he celebrated the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, blood started seeping from the consecrated host and onto the altar and corporal.

Fr. Peter reported this miracle to Pope Urban IV, who at the time was nearby in Orvieto. The pope sent delegates to investigate and ordered that host and blood-stained corporal be brought to Orvieto. The relics were then placed in the Cathedral of Orvieto, where they remain today (see photo below).

This Eucharistic Miracle confirmed the visions given to St. Juliana of Mont Cornillon in Belgium (1193-1258). St. Juliana was a nun and mystic who had a series of visions in which she was instructed by Our Lord to work to establish a liturgical feast for the Holy Eucharist, to which she had a great devotion.

After many years of trying, she finally convinced the bishop, the future Pope Urban IV, to create this special feast in honor of the Blessed Sacrament, where none had existed before. Soon after her death, Pope Urban instituted Corpus Christi for the Universal Church and celebrated it for the first time in Orvieto in 1264, a year after the Eucharistic Miracle in Bolsena.

Feast of the Holy Trinity

Human intelligence needs God's help to apprehend the inner reality of God.  Certainly, human reason can employ natural analysis to some extent to describe God in terms of causality and motion and goodness.  Saint Anselm, who models the universality of Christendom by being both an Italian and an Archbishop of Canterbury, said that "God is that, than which nothing greater can be conceived."

A house is a house because it houses.  But what is in the house is known only by entering it.  Since creatures cannot enter the Creator, he makes himself known by coming into his creation.  "No one has seen God at any time.  The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has declared him" (John 1:18).

Had we invented the Trinitarian formula, it would be only a notion instead of a fact.  There are just three choices: to acknowledge what God himself has declared, to deny it completely, or to change it to what makes sense without God's help.  That is why most heresies are rooted in mistakes about the Three in One and One in Three.

Unitarianism, for example, is based on a Socinian heresy.  Mormonism is an exotic version of the Arian heresy.  Islam has its roots in the Nestorian heresy.  All three reject the Incarnation and the Trinity but selectively adopt other elements of Christianity.  Like Hilaire Belloc in modern times, Dante portrayed Mohammed not as a founder of a religion but simply as a hugely persuasive heretic, albeit persuading most of the time with a sword rather than dialectic.  These religions, however, are not categorically Christian heresies since "Heresy is the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith . . ."  (Catechism, 2089).  Only someone who has been baptized can be an actual heretic.

Cultures are shaped by cult: that is, the way people live depends on what they worship or refuse to worship.  A culture that is hostile to the Holy Trinity spins out of control.  In 1919, William Butler Yeats looked on the mess of his world after the Great War:

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world . . .

That is the chaotic decay of human creatures ignorant of their Triune God.  "The best lack all conviction, while the worst / Are full of passionate intensity."  But to worship the "Holy, Holy, Holy" God as the center and source of reality is to confound anarchy: "For in Him all things were created, things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible . . . He is before all things, and in him all things hold together" (Colossians 1:16-17).