On Saturday, July 30th, Life’s 5th Quarter will be hosting its next Youth Mass to pray for life. The mass will be celebrated by Fr. Andre-Joseph LaCasse, OP at Holy Name Catholic Church on Auburn Ave. Mass will begin at 8:00 AM and will be followed by a procession and the praying of the rosary in front of Planned Parenthood on Auburn. All are invited and encouraged to attend.
For more details, click on the image to the left.
To learn more about Life’s 5th Quarter visit their page on Facebook.
The theme for this year’s Fornight for Freedom is “Freedom to Bear Witness” and what a perfect theme it is! This is now the 4th day of the Fortnight for Freedom called for by the United States Bishops and already we are celebrating a third powerful witness to Christ, St. John the Baptist (the first two were St. Thomas More and St. John Fisher). All of these men were put to death for opposing the actions of the rulers of the kingdoms in which they lived. All of them chose to die rather than betray the Truth. And while it is true that each of is called to be willing to die for our Faith and to stand so staunchly in witness to the Gospel, we cannot forget the reason for the strength of each of these men in the face of death. That reason is their personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
While it is true that each of us is entitled at the moment of our conception to the freedom to bear witness, the question quickly arises, “To what are we bearing witness?” In other words, what has impacted our lives in such a way that we cannot help but “preach” it with every fiber of our being: in the way we act, the way we dress, the way we speak and interact with our neighbors, the way we vote, the way we work, the way we worship, etc? Why are we making such a big fuss about having the freedom to witness? If we don’t have an answer to that question, perhaps its time to find one now.
St. Thomas More, St. John Fisher and St. John the Baptist (and all the other saints in heaven) could answer that question in one word: Truth. Jesus Christ is the Truth. He is the Way, he is the Life and he is the source and summit of all that we do. It is time that each one of us takes seriously our call to be in relationship with Him and to the point that we can say like St. Paul, “It is no longer I, but Christ who lives in me.” It is only from this foundation that we can truly express our freedom to bear witness.
In the meantime, as we develop that personal relationship with Jesus, we like all the saints before us, need to fight for our freedoms through prayer, repentance and sacrifice. What that will look like in your own life is up to you to determine, but let us all make a commitment to not let pass this opportunity to join as a nation in prayer.
Last night, the men of Mount St. Mary’s hosted five men who are discerning their vocation. The men gathered together for Mass, a social, dinner, talks, a tour, and social time with the men. It was a great time as you can see in the picture.
Today we are excited to announce our new vocation video geared specifically at the priesthood and featuring prominently our very own seminary, Mount St. Mary’s Seminary of the West, located right on Beechmont Avenue in Cincinnati!
“I’m continually amazed by the gift of the priesthood” says Fr. David Endres as the film begins, “meaning that it is never something that anyone takes on themselves or something that you necessarily even desire for yourself but something that really is God’s will for you, that is going to give you that ultimate joy and happiness.”
These words are just the beginning of a video full of fantastic imagery, and even more beautiful words spoken by many of the same priests who are currently helping to form the men in the seminary to become the great priests they may be called to be.
We invite you now, to please take this opportunity to learn about what makes the priesthood such a gift, not just to the Church as a whole, but to the man being called to this life.
“The life of the priesthood is just something beyond expression,” says Fr. Benedict O’Cinnsealaigh, Rector of Mount St. Mary’s Seminary of the West, as the video comes to a close, “[and] all God asks us to do is to say, ‘Yes,’…and He can bring about marvelous things.”
Come explore The Gift of the Priesthood.
Many thanks go to Mount St. Mary’s Seminary of the West faculty and seminarians, the priests interviewed for this video, Archbishop Dennis Schnurr for the okay to produce this video, and US Digital Partners for the production of this video!
Today we post the second installment for our series on Consecrated Virginity from our guest author, Dawn Hausmann. You can catch the first installment here. Thanks, Dawn!
The vocation of Consecrated Virginity is quite unique and yet embodies what we, as Church, are all called to be before God in eternity, united with Him as His Bride, His Body. The Consecrated Virgin’s calling and life is centered on being the Bride of Christ in the world. She is espoused to Him, her Maker, and is an image of the living Church while at the same time she is to pray for and be a member of the Church. Her life’s mission is of prayer and is to follow the Lamb wherever He leads and to respond to His promptings with a great “yes” to whatever He may ask of her. She lives in the world, not in a structured community or convent as Religious Sisters do, and financially supports herself in whatever career or ministry that she may feel called to undertake in the world.
Regarding commitment, the Consecrated Virgin promises to continue living a life of virginity for the kingdom of God all the days of her life. She is called to a life of chastity, giving a total gift of herself back to the Lord who gives a total gift of Himself to us, His Church. This gift is only made possible by the grace of Baptism which has called us to love as God loves.
The Consecrated Virgin wears no habit as Religious Sisters do, however, she is to dress modestly as fitting for one consecrated to Christ. She is also called to live a life of simplicity and is under obedience of the Diocesan Bishop of which she lives. She lives a life of prayer and is required to pray the prayer of the Church, the Liturgy of the Hours (at minimum, the Morning and Evening Hours although all seven are encouraged). She is normally active and present in her local church community, attending daily Mass when possible.
As for the process of becoming a Consecrated Virgin, this varies from diocese to diocese. In our Diocese of Lansing, a woman would first petition her bishop by writing a letter stating something regarding her feeling a call to this form of consecrated life. Once the bishop acknowledges the letter and if he sees no obstacle to the woman pursuing this vocation then he will give her the okay to begin meeting with a Consecrated Virgin monthly to discuss articles and aspects of living as a consecrated virgin in the world. It is a bit like a mentorship. The process may take a few years or more depending on the situation of each woman coming to discern the vocation. It is also important to know and speak with other Consecrated Virgins who one may meet through friends, acquaintances, through contact of the diocese, or through being a member of the Association of Consecrated Virgins. Once the bishop sees that the woman is called, prepared and adequately ready to enter the vocation, the woman will become consecrated by the bishop in a ceremony that resembles something of a wedding, the Bridegroom being Christ.
This vocation is quite unique and is certainly a special calling for those women invited by God to remain in the world, being the salt and light of Christ, and yet completely given to Him. The Consecrated Virgin is “set aside” for her Lord, to belong to Him.
This description of the life of a Consecrated Virgin is from the view of a woman discerning this vocation. This vocation is very unique and personal to each woman who is being called by Christ to be His spouse. There really is no mold to which each woman will “fit” into this vocation but Christ and the Consecrated Virgin work out the spirituality, the details, and the way of living out this “marriage” in the world.
For more information regarding this vocation, I would encourage you to visit this website for resources: http://www.consecratedvirgins.org/
God bless you in your journey in seeking the Lord’s will for your life.
In just three stops the seminarians were able to compete against nearly 150 teens and young adults from across the Archdiocese! The weather was nearly picture perfect during all three of the tour stops and not once were we forced off the fields due to rain. The overall energy from the young people of this Archdiocese was palpable and by the looks of it, many eyes were opened to just who goes into the seminary.
These are normal guys, with normal likes and dislikes, who like to play, laugh, and have fun, but who also have taken seriously their call to holiness and their call to follow Christ where He leads. For most of these men, that path will be to the priesthood, for some, that may not be where God is asking them to use their gifts and talents. In the meantime, all of them are able to share the joy that comes from seeking and doing the will of God each day of their lives.
And now, without further ado, I give you the long-awaited pictures from the tour. We were not able to take pictures at all the stops but we have many to share, so enjoy! For even more pictures, visit our Facebook page!
As I am working on several final seminary recommendation letters today, my mind wanders to the reactions that men get from others as the news gets out: ‘He’s going to the seminary!’
For the most part, I had favorable reactions; but the line I embellish in my own personal vocation story involves my mother. I slip in that, after I told her that I thought God might be calling me to the priesthood, well, ‘We had to pick her up off the floor…’
The editor of the New Orleans Clarion Herald, paper of record of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, had a similar experience, or maybe better said: moment of incredulity that a son of his was contemplating the priesthood. Upon his ordination to the priesthood, he wrote about the thoughts he was having as his son was completing that momentous journey. In his reflections, he hits on many of thoughts and feelings that families often have as a son/brother/uncle heads off to the seminary.
Most striking, at least for me, is the question: ‘I wonder what we did right?’ It’s something, I think, my parents have sometimes asked themselves. Perhaps the best answer: we stayed out of the way.
Please pray for the 11 men we have entering formation this Fall, that their families might be as supportive as this father was to the vocation of his son.
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