The Sheepfold

Our Lady of Fatima

i May 13th No Comments by

I pray you are all having a wonderful Easter Season!  As I mentioned before in my Happy Easter, May is the month of Mary!  Today we celebrate Our Lady of Fatima, along with Sts. Imelda and Julia of Norwich.

I love how the regular Gospel reading for Monday of the 4th week of Easter fit so beautifully with Our Lady of Fatima!

Gospel
Jn 10:1-10
Jesus said:
“Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever does not enter a sheepfold through the gate but climbs over elsewhere is a thief and a robber.
But whoever enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.
The gatekeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice, as he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.
When he has driven out all his own, he walks ahead of them, and the sheep follow him, because they recognize his voice.
But they will not follow a stranger; they will run away from him, because they do not recognize the voice of strangers.”
Although Jesus used this figure of speech, they did not realize what he was trying to tell them.

So Jesus said again, “Amen, amen, I say to you, I am the gate for the sheep.
All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them.
I am the gate.
Whoever enters through me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture.
A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy; I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly.”

The Gospel of the Lord! Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ!

Our Lady of Fatima appeared with the approval and Blessing of Jesus to 3 shepherd children!  There are pictures of the children with the sheep they cared for.  Of course the Gospel is speaking of Jesus, the Good Shepherd, and we are the sheep.  Yes, He called each one of us by name, He knows each one of us personally and calls us by name!  The Good Shepherd leads them to good pasture and feeds them.  Jesus feeds us with the Eucharist; the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ.  If we know the story of Our Lady of Fatima, (if not there are good recourses on FORMED, for both adults and children) we know that an Angel of the Lord appeared to them first, taught them a prayer of adoration of the Eucharist and they received Communion!  This was before Mary, Our Lady of Fatima came!  The Lord Himself prepared them for the visit of His Mother, by the visit of the Angel and of course Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament!  The Good Shepherd Himself taking care of the little shepherd children and preparing them lovingly for the visit of His Mother.

The message of Our Lady of Fatima:

The Story of Our Lady of Fatima
Between May 13 and October 13, 1917, three Portuguese children–Francisco and Jacinta Marto and their cousin Lucia dos Santos–received apparitions of Our Lady at Cova da Iria near Fatima, a city 110 miles north of Lisbon. Mary asked the children to pray the rosary for world peace, for the end of World War I, for sinners, and for the conversion of Russia.
Mary gave the children three secrets. Following the deaths of Francisco and Jacinta in 1919 and 1920 respectively, Lucia revealed the first secret in 1927. It concerned devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The second secret was a vision of hell. When Lucia grew up she became a Carmelite nun and died in 2005 at the age of 97.
Pope John Paul II directed the Holy See’s Secretary of State to reveal the third secret in 2000; it spoke of a “bishop in white” who was shot by a group of soldiers who fired bullets and arrows into him. Many people linked this vision to the assassination attempt against Pope John Paul II in St. Peter’s Square on May 13, 1981.
The feast of Our Lady of Fatima was approved by the local bishop in 1930; it was added to the Church’s worldwide calendar in 2002.

So pray the Rosary, pray for sinners, turn back to Jesus and believe in the Gospel, Our Lord and Our Lady will strengthen you as they did the 3 shepherd children.

One of the little girls in The Family of the Good Shepherd home had her choir concert tonight.  It was so nice to listen to children sing mostly hymns for an hour!  It is a blessing that she is able to attend a Christian school!

May God Bless you!

Our Lady of Fatima, St.  Imelda and St. Julia, pray for us!

Happy Easter Season and Month of Mary!

i May 2nd No Comments by

We are now Joyfully in the Easter Season! Alleluia, Alleluia, He is Risen!

The Month of May begins the month of Mary.  How does the month of Mary start…with St. Joseph!

St. Joseph, the husband of Mary, foster father of Our Lord Jesus Christ!  Not much is said of St. Joseph in Scripture.  He listened to God, very important and that he worked as a carpenter and taught the trade to Jesus.

The month of May closes with the Feast of the Visitation of Mary to her Cousin Elizabeth!  Let Mother Mary spend time with you, she will lead you to her son Our Lord Jesus Christ!

Be a Daughter of Mary, Mother of Jesus, the Good Shepherd!

Sr. Catherine

Have a Blessed Triduum!

i Apr 18th No Comments by

May you all have a very Blessed Triduum, leading up to the Easter Season!

The summit of the Liturgical Year is the Easter Triduum—from the evening of Holy Thursday to the evening of Easter Sunday. Though chronologically three days, they are liturgically one day unfolding for us the unity of Christ’s Paschal Mystery.
The single celebration of the Triduum marks the end of the Lenten season, and leads to the Mass of the Resurrection of the Lord at the Easter Vigil.
The liturgical services that take place during the Triduum are:
Mass of the Lord’s Supper
Good Friday of the Lord’s Passion
Mass of the Resurrection of the Lord

Prayers for all Priests, for all those who are receiving their 1st Holy Communion and for us to all “Take up our cross and follow Christ”!  He never gives one that is too difficult for us.  If possible join the Holy Thursday Mass of the Last Supper, Good Friday Service and Stations of the Cross!

Of course my favorite is Holy Saturday Easter Vigil!  It starts after dusk/dark outside with the Easter fire.  Then the processes inside and Father blesses the Easter Holy Water.  There are 9 Scriptures read within this Mass and within this Mass people usually join the Church; receiving Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Eucharist!

May you have a Blessed Triduum!

Sister Catherine

5th Sunday of Lent

i Apr 7th No Comments by

Happy and Blessed 5th Sunday of Lent!

While at the beginning Lent can look long, it seems to fly by!  We are already starting the 5th Sunday of Lent!  Next Sunday is Palm/Passion Sunday and the beginning of Holy Week!

GOSPEL John 8:1-11
Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. But early in the morning he arrived again in the temple area, and all the people started coming to him, and he sat down and taught them. Then the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery and made her stand in the middle. They said to him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. Now in the law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” They said this to test him, so that they could have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and began to write on the ground with his finger. But when they continued asking him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he bent down and wrote on the ground. And in response, they went away one by one, beginning with the elders. So he was left alone with the woman before him. Then Jesus straightened up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She replied, “No one, sir.” Then Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you. Go, and from now on do not sin any more.”

The Gospel of the Lord! Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ!

3rd week of Lent and the Annunciation!

i Mar 25th No Comments by

Wow the 3rd week of Lent already!

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 40:7-8a, 8b-9, 10, 11
R. (8a and 9a) Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
Sacrifice or oblation you wished not,
but ears open to obedience you gave me.
Holocausts or sin-offerings you sought not;
then said I, “Behold I come.”
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
“In the written scroll it is prescribed for me,
To do your will, O my God, is my delight,
and your law is within my heart!”
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
I announced your justice in the vast assembly;
I did not restrain my lips, as you, O LORD, know.
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
Your justice I kept not hid within my heart;
your faithfulness and your salvation I have spoken of;
I have made no secret of your kindness and your truth
in the vast assembly.
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.

Gospel
Lk 1:26-38
The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph,
of the house of David, and the virgin’s name was Mary.
And coming to her, he said, “Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you.”
But she was greatly troubled at what was said and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.
Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.
Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus.
He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever,
and of his Kingdom there will be no end.”
But Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?”
And the angel said to her in reply, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.
Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God.
And behold, Elizabeth, your relative, has also conceived a son in her old age,
and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren; for nothing will be impossible for God.”
Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.

The Gospel of the Lord! Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ!

Every year at some point during Lent; well okay if Easter is early, then the beginning of Easter Season; we have the Feast of the Annunciation!  It can seem out of place in Lent, but it is not.  It reminds us why we have Lent. Namely so Jesus could die and rise and save us from our sins.  Jesus came to us in a human family, grew up, was thought to be of human estate.  But I see something else in here; the willingness to be open and obedient to God.  Not only in Mary, but in Jesus too.  Mary said Yes to God, when the angel Gabriel came to her.  Jesus, the 2nd person of the Most Holy Trinity also said yes “Though He was in the form of God, Jesus did not deem equality with God something to be grasped at. Rather, He emptied Himself and took the form of a slave, being born in the likeness of men. He was known to be of human estate.” Philippians 2:6-7

 

2nd Sunday of Lent

i Mar 16th No Comments by

Happy 2nd Sunday of Lent and Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 27:1, 7-8, 8-9, 13-14.
R. (1a) The Lord is my light and my salvation.
The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom should I fear?
The LORD is my life’s refuge; of whom should I be afraid?
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.
Hear, O LORD, the sound of my call; have pity on me, and answer me.
Of you my heart speaks; you my glance seeks.
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.
Your presence, O LORD, I seek.
Hide not your face from me; do not in anger repel your servant. You are my helper: cast me not off.
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.
I believe that I shall see the bounty of the LORD in the land of the living.
Wait for the LORD with courage; be stouthearted, and wait for the LORD.
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.

Gospel
Lk 9:28b-36
Jesus took Peter, John, and James  and went up the mountain to pray.
While he was praying his face changed in appearance  and his clothing became dazzling white.
And behold, two men were conversing with him, Moses and Elijah,  who appeared in glory and spoke of his exodus
that he was going to accomplish in Jerusalem. Peter and his companions had been overcome by sleep,
but becoming fully awake,  they saw his glory and the two men standing with him.
As they were about to part from him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good that we are here;
let us make three tents, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”
But he did not know what he was saying.
While he was still speaking, a cloud came and cast a shadow over them, and they became frightened when they entered the cloud.
Then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my chosen Son; listen to him.”
After the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. They fell silent and did not at that time tell anyone what they had seen.

The Gospel of the Lord! Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ!

Today is also St. Patrick’s Day.  I think sometimes we get so caught up in the celebration that we forget what we are celebrating and why we are celebrating.  The conversion of a nation to Christianity, the sending out a lot of missionaries.  This was thanks to St. Patrick.  He teaches us to use common things to explain a mystery.  A 3 leaf clover for example to explain the Holy Trinity.  3 leaves 1 clover; 3 persons 1 God.

1st Sunday of Lent

i Mar 9th No Comments by

Welcome to the 1st Sunday of Lent!  How is your Lent so far?  Mine is challenging to say the least, but I keep going for the Easter Season!

I’m doing Psalms this time so here is the Responsorial Psalm for the 1st Sunday of Lent along with the Gospel!  When we read both we see the connection!

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 91:1-2, 10-11, 12-13, 14-15.
R. (cf. 15b) Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
You who dwell in the shelter of the Most High,
who abide in the shadow of the Almighty,
say to the LORD, “My refuge and fortress,
my God in whom I trust.”
R. Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
No evil shall befall you,
nor shall affliction come near your tent,
For to his angels he has given command about you,
that they guard you in all your ways.
R. Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
Upon their hands they shall bear you up,
lest you dash your foot against a stone.
You shall tread upon the asp and the viper;
you shall trample down the lion and the dragon.
R. Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
Because he clings to me, I will deliver him;
I will set him on high because he acknowledges my name.
He shall call upon me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in distress;
I will deliver him and glorify him.
R. Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.

Gospel
Lk 4:1-13
Filled with the Holy Spirit, Jesus returned from the Jordan  and was led by the Spirit into the desert for forty days, to be tempted by the devil.
He ate nothing during those days, and when they were over he was hungry.
The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God,  command this stone to become bread.”
Jesus answered him, “It is written, One does not live on bread alone.”
Then he took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a single instant.
The devil said to him, “I shall give to you all this power and glory;
for it has been handed over to me,  and I may give it to whomever I wish.
All this will be yours, if you worship me.”
Jesus said to him in reply,”It is written:
You shall worship the Lord, your God, and him alone shall you serve.”
Then he led him to Jerusalem,  made him stand on the parapet of the temple, and said to him,
“If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written:
He will command his angels concerning you, to guard you,
and:
With their hands they will support you, lest you dash your foot against a stone.”
Jesus said to him in reply, “It also says,
You shall not put the Lord, your God, to the test.”
When the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from him for a time.

The Gospel of the Lord! Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ!

Temptations!  They are always trouble! Just as Jesus was tempted and triumphed over the devil, we too are tempted.  We too can resist temptation with the help of the Sacraments, Mother Mary and the Saints!  Sometimes we don’t like to admit that we are tempted, because then we have to admit that we sin.  In times of temptation it is always a good thing to know and recall scripture and to call upon our Lord and His Mother to help us as they too triumphed over temptation.  I’ve heard some people say “Jesus was the God Man and Mary didn’t have Original Sin, so of course they withstood temptation.  Let’s not forget that Adam and Eve and all the Angels in heaven also were created without Original Sin.  Due to Adam and Eve we have Original Sin and the need for Sacraments!  The Angels while not human, were all good to begin with, and according to scripture 1/3 of them fell from God’s grace. (Rev. 12:4) The Saints were all born with Original Sin and they are proof that we can make it too!  When you are hungry, satisfy your hunger with the Word of God and Prayer!

Friday after Ash Wednesday

i Mar 7th No Comments by

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 51:3-4, 5-6ab, 18-19
R. (19b) A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn.
Have mercy on me, O God, in your goodness;
in the greatness of your compassion wipe out my offense.
Thoroughly wash me from my guilt
and of my sin cleanse me.
R. A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn.
For I acknowledge my offense,
and my sin is before me always:
“Against you only have I sinned,
and done what is evil in your sight.”
R. A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn.
For you are not pleased with sacrifices;
should I offer a burnt offering, you would not accept it.
My sacrifice, O God, is a contrite spirit;
a heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn.
R. A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn.

I love how this psalm reminds us that we are sinners and need to be cleansed!  That we need to have a contrite heart and seek forgiveness on a regular basis.

Thursday of Lent

i Mar 6th No Comments by

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 1:1-2, 3, 4 and 6
R. (40:5a) Blessed are they who hope in the Lord.
Blessed the man who follows not
the counsel of the wicked
Nor walks in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the company of the insolent,
But delights in the law of the LORD
and meditates on his law day and night.
R. Blessed are they who hope in the Lord.
He is like a tree
planted near running water,
That yields its fruit in due season,
and whose leaves never fade.
Whatever he does, prospers.
R. Blessed are they who hope in the Lord.
Not so the wicked, not so;
they are like chaff which the wind drives away.
For the LORD watches over the way of the just,
but the way of the wicked vanishes.
R. Blessed are they who hope in the Lord.

In our Lenten journey, let us work on not following the ways of the wicked.  Let us work on being the man who is Blessed, one who can be followed, who can introduce others to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Ash Wednesday the beginning of Lent!

i Mar 5th No Comments by

 

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 51:3-4, 5-6ab, 12-13, 14 and 17
R. (see 3a) Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.
Have mercy on me, O God, in your goodness;
in the greatness of your compassion wipe out my offense.
Thoroughly wash me from my guilt
and of my sin cleanse me.
R. Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.
For I acknowledge my offense,
and my sin is before me always:
“Against you only have I sinned,
and done what is evil in your sight.”
R. Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.
A clean heart create for me, O God,
and a steadfast spirit renew within me.
Cast me not out from your presence,
and your Holy Spirit take not from me.
R. Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.
Give me back the joy of your salvation,
and a willing spirit sustain in me.
O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth shall proclaim your praise.
R. Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.