Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Feast of St. Jerome



Today is the Feast of St. Jerome, saint and Doctor of the Church. He was a priest and secretary to Pope Damasus in the years 382 to 385. The painting of St. Jerome above is by Caravaggio and was painted in 1605.

The Old Testament was written in Hebrew and the New Testament in Greek. The Psalms and portions had been translated to Latin but not the complete group of books. Pope Damasus had St. Jerome produce a bible in the language that every day people could understand, Latin, and the Latin Vulgate bible became _the_ bible used within the Church. His insistence on using the oldest available original texts set a precedent for biblical study that influences us now with Church scholars learning Hebrew and Greek.

His great statement, "Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance of Christ", rings out strongly to the present time.

Baronius Press has an edition of the bible with the Latin Vulgate on one page, and the English translated Douay-Rheims version on the facing page. The translation of the Latin is very literal and give you a great feel for St. Jerome's writing. By having the texts side by side, it will also give you a chance to learn a little more Latin.

Information on this bible is available by clicking here.

Year for Priests

YEAR FOR PRIESTS

Faithfulness of Christ, faithfulness of priests

“I have come to Carmel to save souls and especially to pray for priests.”

“I could not forget to pray for simple priests whose mission at times is as difficult to carry out as that of apostles preaching to pagans.”

“I think of all the good I would like to do after my death: have little children baptized, help priests, missionaries, the whole Church.”

“The only purpose of our life of prayer and sacrifice is to be apostles of the apostles while we pray for them as they go about preaching the Gospel by word but especially by example.”

Sayings of St. Therese of Lisieux

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Theme announced for World Communications Day


Our ministry here on the internet is focused on communications. The Archangel Gabriel, as pictured above in the Annunciation by Leonardo Da Vinci, is a wonderful guide for us to follow here on his Feast.

Never has a Pontiff emphasized more that he wants us to embrace technology to promote the Word. Today, a new announcement related to using technology to increase collaboration and communion has been released in Rome.

Each year on the Feast of the Archangels, the Vatican announces the theme for the next World Communications Day, which will fall on January 24, 2010 --- the Feast of St. Francis of Sales, patron saint of journalists.

"The Priest and Pastoral Ministry in a Digital World: New Media at the Service of the Word" is the theme.

The aim of the Message is "to invite priests in particular, during this Year for Priests and in the wake of the Twelfth Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, to consider the new communications media as a possible resource for their ministry at the service of the Word. Likewise, it aims to encourage them to face the challenges arising from the new digital culture".

"The new communications media, if adequately understood and exploited, can offer priests and all pastoral care workers a wealth of data which was difficult to access before, and facilitate forms of collaboration and increased communion that were previously unthinkable".

"If wisely used, with the help of experts in technology and the communications culture, the new media can become - for priests and for all pastoral care workers - a valid and effective instrument for authentic and profound evangelisation and communion".

Feast of the Archangels


Today is the feast of the Archangels, St. Michael, St. Gabriel, and St. Raphael.

Pope Saint Gregory the Great had this to say ...

You should be aware that the word "angel" denotes a function rather than a nature. Those holy spirits of heaven have indeed always been spirits. They can only be called angels when they deliver some message. Moreover, those who deliver messages of lesser importance are called angels; and those who proclaim messages of supreme importance are called archangels.

The name of each archangel also denotes a function. Michael means "Who is like God?" Before The Fall, when Lucifer called the other angels in heaven to stop serving God and become Gods themselves, that was Michael's answer --- and Michael then enjoined Lucifer in battle. The name of Michael was the war cry of the angels.

Gabriel means "The Power of God". He was the angel to appear before Mary at the Annunciation, saying "Hail Mary". Raphael means "The Healing Power of God". He protected Tobias on his journeys.

The painting pictured above was painted by the artist Raphael in 1505 and is in the Louvre picturing the great battle. In the left background, are hypocrites wearing leaden coats. On the right are thieves tormented by serpents. St. Michael prepares to deliver a blow to Satan, pinned beneath his foot.

The prayer to St. Michael is one that gives us strength against adversity:

St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him we humbly pray. And do thou, O prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl around the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Below is a photo of Mont St. Michel in Normandy. According to legend, the archangel Michael appeared to St. Aubert, bishop of Avranches, in 708 and instructed him to build a church on the rocky islet. St. Aubert repeatedly ignored the angel's instruction until Michael burned a hole in the bishop's skull with his finger. That put St. Aubert to work. The dedication to St Michael occurred on October 16, 708.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Homily for 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Homilies are now available to download and listen to!

As part of our answering the challenge of the Holy Father to go out and evangelize utilizing new technologies, we're now offering the homily each week for download. Clicking the link to the homily should download it and automatically start it playing in whatever music player your computer is set up with.

On the technical side, the file sizes are about 5 megs which means it may a minute or two to download on slower internet connections. It is also an MP3 formatted file which means that these are essentially podcasts. Don't worry if all the technical words don't mean much to you. It means we're using the latest in technology in order to make sure our church parish can reach the most people.

The current week's homily is available on a link on the front page of the website next to the link for the current week's bulletin. On the page with the prior bulletins, the corresponding homily will be sitting side by side with its bulletin. We started on the anniversary of the start of the Catholic Church, Pentecost Sunday. This week, The Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, is our eighteenth homily to be posted. This week, the homily is given by Monsignor J. Robert Romero.

So, take a listen and let us know what you think. Click here to download the Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time homily from St. Landry Catholic Church, Opelousas, Louisiana.

Happy Birthday Monsignor Romero!



It's Monsignor Romero's birthday today! Happy Birthday Monsignor from all of us! It seems like just last year we celebrated the last one ... ha ha!

We all wish you a wonderful day and thank you for the great work you do for us as pastor for our parish and as vicar for the northern part of the Diocese of Lafayette, Louisiana.

Those of you who would like to send your birthday wishes to Monsignor can click here to send a message through the parish website or just drop an email to the below address.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Words from Pope Benedict XVI from the Czech Republic and Family Day in the Diocese of Lafayette, Louisiana


With the Diocese of Lafayette, Louisiana celebrating Family Day, we can look to the timely words spoken this very day by Pope Benedict XVI at the Church of Our Lady Victorious in Prague within the Czech Republic. The statue of the Infant of Prague is within that church and the Holy Father chose a family oriented theme for his words.

The most striking paragraph ...

"The image of the Child Jesus calls to mind the mystery of the Incarnation, of the all-powerful God who became man and who lived for thirty years in the lowly family of Nazareth, entrusted by Providence to the watchful care of Mary and Joseph. My thoughts turn to your own families and to all the families in the world, in their joys and difficulties. Our reflections should lead us to prayer, as we call upon the Child Jesus for the gift of unity and harmony for all families. We think especially of young families who have to work so hard to offer their children security and a decent future. We pray for families in difficulty, struggling with illness and suffering, for those in crisis, divided or torn apart by strife or infidelity. We entrust them all to the Holy Infant of Prague, knowing how important their stability and harmony is for the true progress of society and for the future of humanity."


Below is the full text of the Holy Father's remarks.

Apostolic Visit
of His Holiness Benedict XVI
to the Czech Republic
(September 26-28, 2009)

Visit to the "Holy Infant of Prague"

Greeting by The Holy Father

Church of Our Lady Victorious, Prague
Saturday, 26 September 2009


Dear Cardinals,
Your Excellencies,
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Dear Children,

I greet all of you warmly and I want you to know what joy it gives me to visit this Church, dedicated to Our Lady of Victory, where the faithful venerate the statue of the Infant Jesus, known throughout the world as the “Holy Infant of Prague”. I thank Archbishop Jan Graubner, President of the Episcopal Conference, for his words of welcome spoken on behalf of all the Bishops. I offer respectful greetings to the Mayor and to the other civil and religious authorities present at this gathering. I greet you, dear families, who have come in such large numbers to be here with me.

The image of the Child Jesus calls to mind the mystery of the Incarnation, of the all-powerful God who became man and who lived for thirty years in the lowly family of Nazareth, entrusted by Providence to the watchful care of Mary and Joseph. My thoughts turn to your own families and to all the families in the world, in their joys and difficulties. Our reflections should lead us to prayer, as we call upon the Child Jesus for the gift of unity and harmony for all families. We think especially of young families who have to work so hard to offer their children security and a decent future. We pray for families in difficulty, struggling with illness and suffering, for those in crisis, divided or torn apart by strife or infidelity. We entrust them all to the Holy Infant of Prague, knowing how important their stability and harmony is for the true progress of society and for the future of humanity.

The figure of the Child Jesus, the tender infant, brings home to us God’s closeness and his love. We come to understand how precious we are in his eyes, because it is through him that we in our turn have become children of God. Every human being is a child of God and therefore our brother or sister, to be welcomed and respected. May our society grasp this truth! Every human person would then be appreciated not for what he has, but for who he is, since in the face of every human being, without distinction of race or culture, God’s image shines forth.

This is especially true of children. In the Holy Infant of Prague we contemplate the beauty of childhood and the fondness that Jesus Christ has always shown for little ones, as we read in the Gospel (cf. Mk 10:13-16). Yet how many children are neither loved, nor welcomed nor respected! How many of them suffer violence and every kind of exploitation by the unscrupulous! May children always be accorded the respect and attention that are due to them: they are the future and the hope of humanity!

Dear children, I now want to say a special word to you and to your families. You have come here in large numbers to meet me, and for this I thank you most warmly. You are greatly loved by the Child Jesus, and you should return his love by following his example: be obedient, good and kind. Learn to be, like him, a source of joy to your parents. Be true friends of Jesus, and always turn to him in trust. Pray to him for yourselves, for your parents, relations, teachers and friends, and pray also for me. Thank you once again for your welcome. I bless you from my heart and I invoke upon all of you the protection of the Holy Infant Jesus, his Immaculate Mother and Saint Joseph.

The Holy Father now in the Czech Republic



The Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, has arrived in the Czech Republic. He will be touring the country for 3 days. While there, he will see the Infant of Prague at the Church of Our Lady of Victory.

EWTN will have coverage of his trip from 10 AM to 12 PM CST and 5:30 PM to 7 PM today. Tomorrow, it will have coverage from 11 AM to 2:30 PM. Monday, it will have coverage of the final mass at 4 PM to 6 PM. EWTN is found on channel 35 on Charter Cable in Opelousas.

The photo above is of the Infant of Prague in his new raiments for the Pope's visit. At St. Landry Catholic Church, we have a statue of the Infant of Prague. It sits in the southeast corner of the church either next to St. John Vianney or the Blessed Mother. To see the statue in St. Landry Catholic Church, see the bottom of this posting.

Infant of Prague Novena Prayer

O Jesus, Who has said, "Ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened," through the intercession of Mary, Your Most Holy Mother, I knock, I seek, I ask that my prayer be granted.

(Make your request)

O Jesus, Who has said, "All that you ask of the Father in My Name, He will grant you," through the intercession of Mary Your Most Holy Mother, I humbly and urgently ask your Father in your name that my prayer will be granted.

(Make your request)

O Jesus, Who has said, "Heaven and earth shall pass away but My word shall not pass away," through the intercession of Mary Your Most Holy Mother, I feel confident that my prayer will be granted.

(Make your request)

Prayer of Thanksgiving

Divine Infant Jesus, I know You love me and would never leave me. I thank You for Your close Presence in my life.

Miraculous Infant, I believe in Your promise of peace, blessings, and freedom from want. I place every need and care in Your hands.

Lord Jesus, may I always trust in Your generous mercy and love. I want to honor and praise You, now and forever. Amen.

The Holy Father will celebrate mass on Monday for the Feast of St. Wenceslas, patron saint of the Czechs and martyr. King Wenceslas helped to depose an anti Christian regime and is credited with bringing Christianity to the Czech people. The mass will be celebrated in Stara Boleslav, where Wenceslas was murdered by a brother who was sympathetic to anti Christian forces. September 28 in the Czech Republic is a national day of pilgrimage to Stara Boleslav.

Many of us know of St. Wenceslas from the carol.


Good King Wenceslas

Good King Wenceslas looked out, on the Feast of Stephen,
When the snow lay round about, deep and crisp and even;
Brightly shone the moon that night, tho' the frost was cruel,
When a poor man came in sight, gath'ring winter fuel.
"Hither, page, and stand by me, if thou know'st it, telling,
Yonder peasant, who is he? Where and what his dwelling?"
"Sire, he lives a good league hence, underneath the mountain;
Right against the forest fence, by Saint Agnes' fountain."
"Bring me flesh, and bring me wine, bring me pine logs hither:
Thou and I will see him dine, when we bear them thither."
Page and monarch, forth they went, forth they went together;
Through the rude wind's wild lament and the bitter weather.
"Sire, the night is darker now, and the wind blows stronger;
Fails my heart, I know not how; I can go no longer."
"Mark my footsteps, good my page. Tread thou in them boldly
Thou shalt find the winter's rage freeze thy blood less coldly."
In his master's steps he trod, where the snow lay dinted;
Heat was in the very sod which the saint had printed.
Therefore, Christian men, be sure, wealth or rank possessing,
Ye who now will bless the poor, shall yourselves find blessing.



Friday, September 25, 2009

Family Day in the Diocese of Lafayette, Louisiana


On this weekend we celebrate Family Day in the Diocese of Lafayette. Family life is called the ‘domestic church’. With today’s fast life, it is hard for families to strengthen each other. One way many people tell us to help family life is to make sure families get together for a family meal. Get together for five meals a week, not just one meal a week. Also, sharing prayer and life episodes help family life be a school of holiness.

Blessings of Families

Heavenly Father, we give you thanks for all you have bestowed on us, your people. Thank you for allowing us to serve those people you have sent into our lives. Thank you for enabling us to learn your gifts of forgiveness, compassion, patience, joy, peace and love from these precious souls we call our family, as well as, from life’s daily challenges. We ask for your blessings today. Empower us to represent you well. Bear us up when we fall and forgive us when we falter. Bless each of us to reflect your presence to the world as we go through our daily lives. Allow each of us to continue to bring your love to the world through our personal touch. We ask all this in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Readings and Themes for the Week of September 27, 2009

Readings for Faith Sharing
Week of September 27, 2009,
Twenty-sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reading I Numbers 11:25-29
Would that all the people of the Lord were prophets!

Psalm 19
“The precepts of the Lord give joy to the heart.”

Reading II James 5:1-6
The cries of those unjustly treated have reached the Lord.

Gospel: Mark 9:38-43, 45, 47-48
Whatever causes you to sin, cut it away.

THEME:
God wants us to be just and right

Today’s scriptures challenge us to re-examine our behaviors, attitudes, and priorities. The words of Saint James in today’s second reading are enough to make anyone shudder. The Lord Jesus is straightforward with his followers when he tells them, “Whatever causes sin, cut it away”. As the word is proclaimed this day, let us be open to its challenges to become more and more like Christ.

Question for Children:
In what specific ways do you share with the poor from what you have been given?

Question for Youth:
Who are the people you have met who are against you?
Are there people who persecute you because of your faith?
How do you treat these people?

Question for Adults:
In today's worldwide community, who are the rich and what does God want of them?

Ministry Fair at all masses this weekend

It is time for the annual Ministry Fair at St. Landry Catholic Church.

In the rear of the church, after each mass this weekend, you will find tables set up displaying the various ministries and groups active at St. Landry Catholic Church. We want you to take advantage of the help these various ministries can bring to you and your family. But we also want you to think about joining one of these ministries in order to help others and give back to our community. Members of each group will be there to greet you and answer questions.

There is a sign up sheet at each table. Please add your name to those groups you feel could use your help.

Pick up a sheet at our internet/web table that lists all of the various ways you can get information about St. Landry Catholic Church on the internet. We look forward to seeing you this weekend.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Diocese and Archdiocese in the U.S. - Populations

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops have released numbers showing the population of archdiocese and diocese in the U.S.

For the entire nation, click here.

For Louisiana:

Name of La. DioceseCatholic PopulationTotal PopulationCatholic Population Percentage
Alexandria40,783386,60211%
Baton Rouge219,018931,00424%
Houma-Thibodeaux107,003202,00053%
Lafayette315,717568,15456%
Lake Charles70,961283,42925%
New Orleans387,1011,075,28336%
Shreveport39,951791,6575%

Bulletin for the Weekend of September 27, 2009


The bulletin for the weekend of September 27, 2009 has been posted. Click here to see it.

The calendar on the website has been updated with all events for the coming week along with prayer intention information and information on the second collection for all of the masses. Take some time to look at our calendar here.

Updates are also being made to our St. Landry Catholic Church blog. You can get to the blog from the church home page under the Bulletins and News section or you can just click here to go to it.

Don't forget, we're also sending out live updates via Twitter. Our Twitter name is StLandryCath. You can see updates by clicking here.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Saint Thecla


Today is the feast day of Saint Thecla. She is thought to have lived in the first century of the church and was engaged to be married. She heard St. Paul's discourse on virginity and decided to follow him. There are stories of her being saved from being martyred by miraculous events including by rain when an attempt was made to burn her at the stake. Saint Thecla spent her days following St. Paul on his apostolic journeys also preaching the good news herself.

Recently, the oldest known fresco of St. Paul, dating to the 4th century, was found in the Catacomb of St. Thecla in Rome.

About the painting above ...

It is called "Saint Thecla Praying for the Plague-Stricken" and was painted around 1758 by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo.

This is a preliminary sketch for one of Tiepolo's greatest religious works, the 22 foot-high canvas in the apse of the cathedral at Este, near Padua. Commissioned in 1758 and installed on Christmas day, 1759, the picture commemorates the plague of 1630 when the townspeople of Este prayed for the intercession of Saint Thecla. The first-century saint is shown among victims of the plague, praying to God; the town in the background is Este.

Safe Environment Meeting

On Monday evening, 28 September at 6:30 pm, in Valentin Hall, a Safe Environment presentation will be held for ALL registered high school religion students AND their parents.

It is a Diocesan policy that all students and their parents attend the presentation.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

The Little Flower in the U.K.



Our prior posting references St. Therese and Priests including the events at the Carmelite Monastery in Lafayette, Louisiana.

As we approach the Feast of St. Therese of Lisieux, the Little Flower, Thursday, October 1, there are many events happening world wide. Currently, a reliquary containing the relics of St. Therese is touring England and Wales for an entire month. St. Therese had a very short life and taught that acts of heroic virtue aren't the only thing that define saints. Doing everyday things with great love and without complaint are core to her vision of a saintly life.

Here is a short article on the tour in the Times of London: click here.

Here is an article on why we should venerate relics from the Catholic Herald in the UK: click here.

And this is a detailed article on St. Therese and the tour of her relics: click here.

Lastly, here is the website of the Society of the Little Flower where you can find prayers and prayer cards and a whole host of things related to her: click here.

Year for Priests - St. Therese and Priests

YEAR FOR PRIESTS

Faithfulness of Christ, faithfulness of priests

Shortly before she made her Profession, in answer to a formal inquiry as to why she had entered Carmel, St. Therese affirmed: “I have come to Carmel to save souls and to pray for priests”.

Although St. Therese had always had the greatest respect for priests, she also realized they were fallible and human, like everyone else.

Our focus for the Novena honoring St. Therese in this Year for Priests will be to do as she did: to pray and sacrifice for all who share the great privilege of the ministerial priesthood, not forgetting to include our own personal intentions.

We invite you to join us for the Novena (made privately) and for the Blessing of Roses (see the schedule below).

NOVENA PRAYER

O Jesus, eternal Priest, keep your priests within the shelter of your Sacred Heart where none may touch them.

Keep unstained their anointed hands which daily hold your Sacred Body.

Keep unsullied their lips which daily taste your Precious Blood.

Keep pure and steadfast their hearts, sealed with the sublime mark of the priesthood.

Let your holy love surround them and shield them from the influence of evil.

Bless their labors with abundant fruit and may the souls to whom they minister be their joy and consolation on earth and in heaven their beautiful and everlasting crown.

Jesus, eternal Priest, remember also your Priestly People who turn to you with confidence.

Keep us and our families faithful to you. Listen to our prayers and help us in our needs and fears, our temptations and frustrations, in all that is trying or distressing in our lives. We trust in your merciful love as we make all these prayers through your chosen child, St. Therese. Amen.


Schedule

NOVENA: September 23 through October 1
Please join us as we pray it privately for all priests and for your intentions.

THURSDAY: October 1, Feast of St. Therese, Mass at 6:45 AM at the Carmelite Monastery

SUNDAY: October 4, Mass and Blessing of Roses @ 2:30 PM at the Carmelite Monastery

Discalced Carmelite Nuns
Monastery of Mary, Mother of Grace
1250 Carmel Drive
Lafayette, Louisiana 70501 - 5299
(337) 232-3623
http://www.lafayettecarmelites.org/

Homily for 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Homilies are now available to download and listen to!

As part of our answering the challenge of the Holy Father to go out and evangelize utilizing new technologies, we're now offering the homily each week for download. Clicking the link to the homily should download it and automatically start it playing in whatever music player your computer is set up with.

On the technical side, the file sizes are about 5 megs which means it may a minute or two to download on slower internet connections. It is also an MP3 formatted file which means that these are essentially podcasts. Don't worry if all the technical words don't mean much to you. It means we're using the latest in technology in order to make sure our church parish can reach the most people.

The current week's homily is available on a link on the front page of the website next to the link for the current week's bulletin. On the page with the prior bulletins, the corresponding homily will be sitting side by side with its bulletin. We started on the anniversary of the start of the Catholic Church, Pentecost Sunday. This week, The Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, is our seventeenth homily to be posted. This week, the homily is given by Monsignor J. Robert Romero.

So, take a listen and let us know what you think. Click here to download the Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time homily from St. Landry Catholic Church, Opelousas, Louisiana.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Readings and Themes for the Week of September 20, 2009

Readings for Faith Sharing
Week of September 20, 2009,
Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reading I Wisdom 2:12, 17-20
The just one is condemned to a shameful death.

Psalm 54
“The Lord upholds my life.”

Reading II James 3:16-4:3
The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace for those who cultivate peace.

Gospel: Mark 9:30-37
Whoever receives a child in Jesus' name, receives Jesus.

THEME:
We are called to serve others

In today’s Gospel, Jesus speaks often about his coming passion. His disciples, for their part, ignore these predictions. Instead, they argue among themselves about what share in Jesus’ royal power and glory will be given them. Jesus’ response to the disciples’ arrogance is not one of anger or frustration. What he does is remarkable - - he hugs a little child and tells his disciples, and us, that whoever welcomes a little child, welcomes him. That is who is greatest in Jesus’ kingdom.

Question for Children:
What are some specific ways in which you can serve your friends or family members?

Question for Youth:
Sometimes when we strive to be first or be the one that wins, we hurt others.
When has striving to be first hurt others?
What can you do differently in the future to help others to succeed?

Question for Adults:
Is the role of being a servant for others easy or difficult for you to embrace?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

God set them in the firmament of the heavens


Today, Pope Benedict XVI visited the new location of the Vatican Observatory at Castel Gandolfo just outside of Rome in Italy.

The Vatican has long had an interest in astronomy. The Vatican Observatory was founded in 1578 by Pope Gregory XIII as a committee to study the data and implications involved in the reform of the calendar that occurred in 1582 --- what is commonly known as the Gregorian Calendar still in use today.

After having an observatory for more than 3 centuries in Rome, it was moved to the grounds of the Pope's summer residence at Castel Gandolfo in the 1930's in order to get away from the city lights. In the last year, the observatory was moved to a renovated convent further out from the Pope's summer residence in order to give the scientists and researchers there more room. They have moved their 22,000 volumes of scientific works including early works of Copernicus, Galileo, Newton, Kepler and others. And there is also a large collection of meteorites.

In conjunction with the observatory there in Italy, the Vatican has opened a second site in the 1980's named the Vatican Observatory Research Group in Tucson, Arizona with the University of Arizona. There, away from city lights, they are able to observe even more details. It is considered one of the premier observatories in the world. The website of the Vatican Observatory can be found by clicking here.

Another interesting fact about astronomy and the Vatican ... Georges Lemaitre is the professor of physics and astronomy who proposed the Big Bang Theory of the origin of the universe. It was a marked change in theories up to that time and better described what astronomers were measuring in the heavens. He became famous and traveled across the United States giving a series of lectures with another physicist named Albert Einstein.

Professor Lemaitre taught physics and astronomy at Catholic University at Louvain in Belgium. There, he was known as Monsignor Lemaitre: he was a Catholic priest.


In this international year of astronomy, the Vatican and the Observatory have released a book of photos from their telescopes that includes quotes from various Popes. The book is printed by Our Sunday Visitor. Click here to purchase it on Amazon. The following is a description:

Why does the starlit sky hold such a profound fascination for us?
Perhaps because it is there that we encounter, commingled, the mystery of light and darkness two primal experiences connected with the beginning and end of human life.

Perhaps it comes from seeing the order, both overt and occult, in the movement of celestial spheres, with which we sense ourselves secretly involved.

Perhaps it is because we feel so small before the starry universe and in this way we begin to become aware within ourselves of the grand questions regarding our existence and our passing through life.

Why are there telescopes on the roof of the Pope's Summer home in Castel Gandolfo?

For more than 100 years, the Vatican has supported an astronomical observatory. But that should come as no surprise; from even before the Gregorian Reform of the Calendar in 1582, indeed dating back to the invention of the University (where studying astronomy was a requirement for anyone wanting a doctorate in philosophy or theology!) the Church has not only supported astronomical research...it has seen the study of the Heavens as a way of getting to know the Creator!

In honor of the International Year of Astronomy, the Vatican and its Observatory is delighted to present this small expression of support, filled with beautiful images from the Vatican's telescopes and wisdom from the Popes, to show that indeed.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Bulletin for the Weekend of September 20, 2009


The bulletin for the weekend of September 20, 2009 has been posted. Click here to see it.

The calendar on the website has been updated with all events for the coming week along with prayer intention information and information on the second collection for all of the masses. Take some time to look at our calendar here.

Updates are also being made to our St. Landry Catholic Church blog. You can get to the blog from the church home page under the Bulletins and News section or you can just click here to go to it.

Don't forget, we're also sending out live updates via Twitter. Our Twitter name is StLandryCath. You can see updates by clicking here.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

New Study on Vocations


In our Year for Priests, vocations are being looked at in more and more detail. A new study has found the number of people entering religious life is increasing while the average age of the person entering religious life is becoming younger. The largest numbers of men and women entering are under 30 years of age.

John Allen has an interview in the form of an article in the latest National Catholic Reporter, click here to read it, with Holy Cross Brother Paul Bednarczyk, executive director of the National Religious Vocations Conference. One of the interesting parts of the article talks about reaching out via the web.

"You’ve got to be present on the Internet, including making use of online promotional materials, keeping your Web site up to date, and so on. Given the diminishing numbers in religious life, young people are more likely to meet a congregation when they Google “vocations” than physically. Having a successful Web presence helps, including social networking, Facebook and Twitter. Some communities post video clips, or invite people to e-mail members of the community."


Another interesting section discusses the wearing of the habit. A full 2/3rds of the younger members belong to communities that wear the habit. Of those men who belong to communities that don't, nearly half of the men said they would wear one if it was allowable.

More detailed information is available at the NRVC's website by clicking here. The full report is there along with a lot of interesting casual reading material.

One of the best parts is the Ten Myths of Religious life, quoted below ...

Ten myths about religious life . . .
and the facts from the 2009 NRVC/CARA Study that dispel them


Myth #1: No one is entering religious life anymore.

Fact: More than 70 percent of all religious communities (both men’s and women’s) report having new members in formation. Nearly 20 percent have five or more people in some stage of formation. These numbers do not reflect the large number of entrants in the 1950s and ’60s, although many people have used this period as a point for comparison. The 2009 NRVC/CARA Study on Recent Vocations sets the benchmark for the current century.

Myth #2: Most vocations are coming from older/second-career candidates.

Fact: Our study indicates that the average age of men who entered religious life since 1993 was 30. For women the age was 32. The data also shows that 71 percent of those in initial formation are under 40. Although there always has been, and always will be a place for older or second career candidates in religious life, our study results have confirmed what we have tracked in our Vocation Match Annual Trends Survey, which is that an increasing number of younger people are looking at religious life as a possible life option.

Myth #3: Conservative/traditional communities are the only communities attracting new members.

Fact: Religious institutes that have a focused mission, who live in community, who have regular prayer and sacramental life, and who wear a habit show a higher proportion of newer members. The study indicates that men and women are also drawn to other types of religious life.

Myth #4: Women entering religious life want to wear habits.

Fact: Both men and women seem to be drawn to habited communities. About two thirds of the newer members say they belong to a religious institute that wears a habit. Among those that responded affirmatively, a little more than half indicate that the habit is required in all or most circumstances.

Interestingly, almost half of the men who belong to an institute that does not wear a habit say they would wear it if it were an option, compared to nearly a quarter of the women respondents.

Myth #5: Entering religious life is a last resort.

Fact: New members to religious life report having rich options available to them—in terms of career, education, and personal life choices. Seventy percent of respondents had at least a bachelor’s degree before entering, with one third of these respondents also having degrees in higher education. Nine out of ten respondents said that they were employed prior to entering their institutes.

Myth #6: Younger religious are not interested in traditional devotional practices.

Fact: Newer members have ranked highly daily Mass as very important to them.Their prayer style also expresses a strong preference for Liturgy of the Hours, faith-sharing, nonliturgical common prayer, Eucharistic adoration, and common rosary and meditation.

Myth #7: Religious communities are dying out.

Fact: The rise and diminishment of religious institutes has always been part of the continuum of religious life. Once a need is met, unless a community adapts its founding charism to addressing the changing needs in the Church, it is not uncommon for the community to end. Many congregations today that share a same charism are either consolidating or merging into new religious institutes. One little known fact is that since the end of Vatican II in 1965, approximately 175 newer religious communities have been founded in the United States alone. Some were only short-lived, but others are canonically recognized as religious institutes by the Church today.

Myth #8: Religious communities are homogeneous and lacking in ethnic and cultural diversity.

Fact: This may have been the case previously, but newer members are definitely changing the face of religious life in this country. Fifty eight percent of newer religious are white Anglo, compared to 94 percent of the finally professed men and women religious in the US. Nearly 20 percent of newer entrants were born in a country other than the United States. Hispanic/Latino vocations make up 21 per cent of the newer religious while 14 per cent are Asian/Pacific and 6 per cent are African or African American.

Myth #9: New members would prefer to live alone.

Fact: Newer members are coming to religious life not just for ministry, but also for common prayer and community living as well. Respondents were much more likely to indicate a preference for living in a large (8 or more) or medium-sized (4 to 7) community than living in a small community and especially living alone. This is especially true of younger members.

Myth #10: New members want to live with younger members.

Fact: Although having a peer group of their age cohort is extremely important to younger members, the evidence shows an extremely high percentage (93) of newer members who prefer to live in community with people of different ages. In addition, newer members also show a preference for living with people of different cultures and who do different ministries.

Bonus:
Myth #11: New members are drawn to the ministries of a community.


Fact: Newer members indicate that they are drawn to religious life because of the example of the members, the spirituality, prayer life, community life, and mission of the institute. In fact, more than half of the newer members surveyed indicate that they were previously involved in either some liturgical ministry or other volunteer work in a parish or other setting. Since newer members were already previously involved in some type of ministry, clearly, they are coming to religious life not just for ministry—they are coming for a way of life that is different from what they were living before.

Monday, September 14, 2009

How does a person become canonized?



CatholicTV is airing an episode tomorrow, September 15, 2009, on how a person becomes canonized. Specifically, the show will discuss Blessed Father Francis Xavier Seelos, C.Ss.R.

Father Seelos was a Redemptorist priest who passed away in New Orleans in 1867 from yellow fever. He was declared Blessed on April 9, 2000 and his feast day is October 5. The National Seelos Shrine and Seelos Center is in New Orleans.

The show will be on air Tuesday at 8:30 AM and again at 7 PM. CatholicTV is not available on cable in the Opelousas area. You can watch it on Catholic TV's website http://www.CatholicTV.org. After Tuesday's airing, it will be stored in the site's archives allowing you to watch it at any time you please.

The website for information on Blessed Father Seelos is http://www.seelos.org.

My Name is Charlene



In Sunday's homily, Monsignor Romero quoted Father Joseph Brennan. Father Brennan's book is called "My Name is Charlene". It is a small book, just over 50 pages, that describes his experience as chaplain at Our Lady of Lourde's Hospital in Lafayette with Charlene Richard, a terminally ill young girl from Richard, Louisiana.

The book is available locally at The Catholic Bookshoppe, 2364 Larkspur Lane, Opelousas, Louisiana 70570,(337) 948-8050.

Year for Priests - Thought for the week

YEAR FOR PRIESTS

Faithfulness of Christ, faithfulness of priests

Promoting the Priesthood


Many boys and young men, when asked whether they might have a vocation to the priesthood, respond by saying something about their desire to marry and to have a family.

This is a perfect point of departure both for understanding and for promoting the priesthood.

Every man, as a man, is first called to be a husband and a father. Some men live out this primal vocation through the sacrament of marriage and the family life, while others live it through the priesthood.

Hence, the priestly calling is a fulfillment of a man’s primal vocation to be both husband and father.

The priest, as an alter Christus, takes the bride of Christ — the Church — as his own bride. The priest, universally called father, cares for and shepherds into eternal life the children of God.

The priesthood is another way of living the life of a man, husband, and father. It is demanding and rewarding. It calls for courage and sacrifice. It is joyful and painful. It is not what you expected, and it is more than you expected. Just like the life of the married family man.

With this understanding, with a love of the Church, the Eucharist, and the priesthood, we must all promote vocations to Holy Orders, especially within our own families.

But this is the particular duty of family men. Father, grandfathers, and uncles must give their boys their permission and their blessing to consider the priesthood.

A boy or a young man must have the explicit, spoken, and clear support of the men in his life that it is okay to consider being a priest, that it would be an honor for family and friends, that they – the men in his life -- would be proud of him should God call him to Holy Orders.

As we promote priestly vocations, we may rest assured that Christ will use our good will and efforts in order to sustain the Church with the Eucharist, the sacraments of grace, and the truth of divine revelation until He comes again in glory.

Fr. Joshua Guillory

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Homily for 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Homilies are now available to download and listen to!

As part of our answering the challenge of the Holy Father to go out and evangelize utilizing new technologies, we're now offering the homily each week for download. Clicking the link to the homily should download it and automatically start it playing in whatever music player your computer is set up with.

On the technical side, the file sizes are about 5 megs which means it may a minute or two to download on slower internet connections. It is also an MP3 formatted file which means that these are essentially podcasts. Don't worry if all the technical words don't mean much to you. It means we're using the latest in technology in order to make sure our church parish can reach the most people.

The current week's homily is available on a link on the front page of the website next to the link for the current week's bulletin. On the page with the prior bulletins, the corresponding homily will be sitting side by side with its bulletin. We started on the anniversary of the start of the Catholic Church, Pentecost Sunday. This week, The Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, is our sixteenth homily to be posted. This week, the homily is given by Monsignor J. Robert Romero.

So, take a listen and let us know what you think. Click here to download the Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time homily from St. Landry Catholic Church, Opelousas, Louisiana.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Readings and Themes for the Week of September 13 2009

Readings for Faith Sharing
Week of September 13, 2009,
Twenty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reading I Isaiah 50:5-9a
God’s servant will suffer great physical harm.

Psalm 116
“I will walk before the Lord, in the land of the living.”

Reading II James 2:14-18
Faith is dead if it does not have works.

Gospel: Mark 8:27-35
Those who wish to follow Jesus deny themselves.

THEME:
We are called to carry our crosses

Today we hear one of the Lord Jesus’ most challenging teachings. Those who wish to follow him, we are told, must deny themselves and take up the cross. The image of the suffering servant in today’s first reading makes this teaching all the more challenging. The letter of Saint James suggests that those who choose to follow Christ must also do so in word and deed, caring for those who are less fortunate. Let us be open to God’s challenging word and pray that we will be given renewed strength to follow Christ.

Question for Children:
What do you think it means for you to follow in Jesus’ footsteps?

Question for Youth:
Who do you say that Jesus is?
Who is Jesus in your life?

Question for Adults:
What is the cross that you carry today?
How do you follow Jesus in the workplace? and at home?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Around the diocese

Sept. 16 Theology on Tap at Tsunami Restaurant, Jefferson St, Lafayette
“From Sinner to Saint: Living the Authentic Spiritual Life”.
Presenter is Fr. Chester Arceneaux of Our Lady of Wisdom Parish.
Open to young adults (18-35) married or single.
7:30 pm
Call 261-5653 for more information.

Sept. 28 Way of Wisdom VIII
Join Fr. Hampton Davis and Fr. Curtis Mallet on a pilgrimage to Bavaria, Switzerland, and Austria. For more information, call 291-1933

September 26, 7 PM - Charismatic Sunday Vigil Mass
Everyone is invited to this month’s Charismatic “Sunday Vigil” Mass – Saturday, September 26th, 7:00 pm - --sponsored by the Lafayette Diocese Catholic Renewal with approval of Bishop Jarrell.

The mass will be held at Our Lady Queen of Peace Church, 145 MLK Jr. Drive in Lafayette.

All priest and deacons are invited to participate.

There will be lively liturgical music ministry with pre-praise session, prophecy after communion, individual prayer after mass and confessions as well.

Participants are encouraged to maintain their local parish offering.

Call the CCR office for more information, Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday afternoons at 265-3773.

Bulletin for the Weekend of September 13, 2009 is now posted


The bulletin for the weekend of September 13, 2009 has been posted. Click here to see it.

The calendar on the website has been updated with all events for the coming week along with prayer intention information and information on the second collection for all of the masses. Take some time to look at our calendar here.

Updates are also being made to our St. Landry Catholic Church blog. You can get to the blog from the church home page under the Bulletins and News section or you can just click here to go to it.

Don't forget, we're also sending out live updates via Twitter. Our Twitter name is StLandryCath. You can see updates by clicking here.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Beautiful mass in memory of Lt. Father Verbis Lafleur


Monday night, September 7, St. Landry Catholic Church was the site of the memorial mass of Lt. Father Verbis Lafleur. It was the sixty-fifth anniversary of his death.

The main celebrant and homilist for the mass was Lt. Cmdr. Father Richard Vidrine, CHC, USNR. Father Vidrine is a retired military chaplain and brought everyone a little closer to understanding what life as a chaplain was like for Father Lafleur. To listen to his homily, click here.

Concelebrants included our own pastor, Monsignor J. Robert Romero as well Father Mark Ledoux, who has worked hard in the beatification process, Father Conley Bertrand, and Father Jason Vidrine. Deacon John Miller, Deacon of the Eucharist, Deacon Tom Lindsey, Deacon of the Word, and Deacon Jerome Collins, Deacon of the Gospel, participated. Attending in choir were Father Brad Guillory and a seminarian from the Diocese of Lafayette, Louisiana, Taj Glodd.

Vernon Broussard Sr. helped to bring the offering gifts. Mr. Broussard attended seminary with Father Lafleur. He has put together a book describing the great men associated with the Church that touched his life including Father Lafleur. Please contact the parish office for information on getting a copy.

To see photos of the event in our photo gallery, please click here.

It was wonderful seeing such a large crowd at St. Landry Catholic Church. After the mass, many attending came together to pray the rosary using the meditations from Father Lafleur's life. Each Monday evening at 6:15 PM, parishioners gather together for a rosary at the Father Lafleur monument. Please try to join us.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin


December 8 is the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary. Today September 8, 9 months after that date, is the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin.

The painting above is by the Spanish artist Esteban Murillo and was painted in 1660 and is called "The Birth of the Virgin". It shows the newborn Virgin being taken from her bath by servants and angels as she radiates light. Cherubs hand a towel from a wicker basket. Other servants and angels kneel as a cloud of angels descends from heaven. The parents of Mary also appear in the left background, Saint Anne rests on her bed as Saint Joachim stands to one side. Servants dry swaddling clothes at the fireplace on the right.

The following is from today's morning reading of the Liturgy of the Hours. It is a homily on The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin and was written in the 700's, 1300 years ago.

From a discourse by Saint Andrew of Crete, bishop

(Oratio 1: PG 97, 806-810)

The old has passed away, all things are made new.

The fulfillment of the law is Christ himself, who does not so much lead us away from the letter as lift us up to its spirit. For the law’s consummation was this, that the very lawgiver accomplished his work and changed letter into spirit, summing everything up in himself and, though subject to the law, living by grace. He subordinated the law, yet harmoniously united grace with it, not confusing the distinctive characteristics of the one with the other, but effecting the transition in a way most fitting for God. He changed whatever was burdensome, servile and oppressive not what is light and liberating, so that we should be enslaved no longer under the elemental spirits of the world, as the Apostle says, nor held fast as bondservants under the letter of the law.

This is the highest, all-embracing benefit that Christ has bestowed on us. This is the revelation of the mystery, this is the emptying out of the divine nature, the union of God and man, and the deification of the manhood that was assumed. This radiant and manifest coming of God to men most certainly needed a joyful prelude to introduce the great gift of salvation to us. The present festival, the birth of the Mother of God, is the prelude, while the final act is the fore-ordained union of the Word with flesh. Today the Virgin is born, tended and formed and prepared for her role as Mother of God, who is the universal King of the ages.

Justly, then, do we celebrate this mystery since it signifies for us a double grace. We are led toward the truth, and we are led away from our condition of slavery to the letter of the law. How can this be? Darkness yields before the coming of the light, and grace exchanges legalism for freedom. But midway between the two stands today’s mystery, at the frontier where types and symbols give way to reality, and the old is replaced by the new.

Therefore, let all creation sing and dance and unite to make worthy contribution to the celebration of this day. Let there be one common festival for saints in heaven and men on earth. Let everything, mundane things and those above, join in festive celebration. Today this created world is raised to the dignity of a holy place for him who made all things. The creature is newly prepared to be a divine dwelling place for the Creator.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Year for Priests - Thoughts for the Week

YEAR FOR PRIESTS

Faithfulness of Christ, faithfulness of priests

What does the priest do?


From the Letter to the Hebrews: “Every high priest is taken from among men and made their representative before God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins” (5:1).

The priest offers sacrifice to God. In the Old Testament, God revealed to the Israelites how He desired to be worshiped. This worship of the one true God involved three essential and indispensable elements: 1) an altar; 2) a sacrifice; 3) a priest.

The worship of the Eternal One was brought to its perfect fulfillment in Christ Jesus, who, upon the Cross became the priest, the altar, and the sacrificial victim, all in one.

However, the requirements of divine worship were not abolished with Christ, but brought to their perfection in Him. We still have need of an altar, a sacrifice, and a priest. We need the one altar, the Cross; the one sacrifice, the Body and the Blood; the one priest, Jesus Christ.

All of these our Lord still gives to His Church by means of the sacraments: in Holy Orders, the priest; in the Eucharist, the sacrifice; in the Church (which is the ‘sacrament of salvation’), the altar.

And so the priest, chosen by God from among men, made their representative before Him, offers the sacrifice of Christ, the sacrifice of the Cross, for the glory of God and for the salvation of souls, for all who have asked him to pray for them in general and in particular, and for the good of the holy Roman Church.

Fr. Joshua Guillory

Lt. Father Verbis Lafleur Memorial Mass 6:30 PM TODAY


The Lt. Father Verbis Lafleur Memorial Mass will be held at 6:30 PM TODAY at St. Landry Catholic Church in Opelousas, Louisiana. Celebrant will be Rev. Richard Vidrine, CHC, USNR.

The Daily World has a great article on Father Lafleur in today's paper. Click here to read it.

The St. Landry Catholic Church website has a host of resources about Father Lafleur.

Click here and you will find links to a Novena to Father Verbis Lafleur, a special prayer of adoration before the blessed sacrament, two different prayer cards, and a series of rosary meditations that include information about the life of Father Lafleur.

Click here to read an article in the Advocate on the impact Father Lafleur has had on the Lowe family in California.

Click here for a detailed description about the monument and key moments of Father Lafleur's life.

Click here for the St. Landry Catholic Church photo gallery where we have photos of the erection of the monument.

And click here for a 3D interactive view of the monument. This is known as a Photosynth and allows you to zoom in, zoom out, and rotate the monument in 3 dimensions.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Homily for the 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Homilies are now available to download and listen to!

As part of our answering the challenge of the Holy Father to go out and evangelize utilizing new technologies, we're now offering the homily each week for download. Clicking the link to the homily should download it and automatically start it playing in whatever music player your computer is set up with.

On the technical side, the file sizes are about 5 megs which means it may a minute or two to download on slower internet connections. It is also an MP3 formatted file which means that these are essentially podcasts. Don't worry if all the technical words don't mean much to you. It means we're using the latest in technology in order to make sure our church parish can reach the most people.

The current week's homily is available on a link on the front page of the website next to the link for the current week's bulletin. On the page with the prior bulletins, the corresponding homily will be sitting side by side with its bulletin. We started on the anniversary of the start of the Catholic Church, Pentecost Sunday. This week, The Twenty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, is our fourteenth homily to be posted. This week, the homily is given by Monsignor J. Robert Romero.

So, take a listen and let us know what you think. Click here to download the Twenty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time homily from St. Landry Catholic Church, Opelousas, Louisiana.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Anniversary of the death of Blessed Mother Teresa


Today, September 5th, is the 12th anniversary of the death of Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta. Best known for founding the Missionaries of Charity, Mother Teresa opened orphanages, schools for the poor, and homes for the dying in the poorest nations while she opened homes for drug addicts, prostitutes, battered women, and the first home for AIDs victims in New York City in 1985.

The following is the homily by Pope John Paul II on the occasion of her beatification.

Beatification of Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Homily of His Holiness John Paul II

World Mission Sunday

Sunday, 19 October 2003

1. "Whoever would be first among you must be slave of all" (Mk10: 44). Jesus' words to his disciples that have just rung out in this Square show us the way to evangelical "greatness". It is the way walked by Christ himself that took him to the Cross: a journey of love and service that overturns all human logic. To be the servant of all!

Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Foundress of the Missionaries of Charity whom today I have the joy of adding to the Roll of the Blesseds, allowed this logic to guide her. I am personally grateful to this courageous woman whom I have always felt beside me. Mother Teresa, an icon of the Good Samaritan, went everywhere to serve Christ in the poorest of the poor. Not even conflict and war could stand in her way.

Every now and then she would come and tell me about her experiences in her service to the Gospel values. I remember, for example, her pro-life and anti-abortion interventions, even when she was awarded the Nobel Prize for peace (Oslo, 10 December 1979). She often used to say: "If you hear of some woman who does not want to keep her child and wants to have an abortion, try to persuade her to bring him to me. I will love that child, seeing in him the sign of God's love".

2. Is it not significant that her beatification is taking place on the very day on which the Church celebrates World Mission Sunday? With the witness of her life, Mother Teresa reminds everyone that the evangelizing mission of the Church passes through charity, nourished by prayer and listening to God's word. Emblematic of this missionary style is the image that shows the new Blessed clasping a child's hand in one hand while moving her Rosary beads with the other.

Contemplation and action, evangelization and human promotion: Mother Teresa proclaimed the Gospel living her life as a total gift to the poor but, at the same time, steeped in prayer.

3. Whoever wants to be great among you must be your servant" (Mk 10: 43). With particular emotion we remember today Mother Teresa, a great servant of the poor, of the Church and of the whole world. Her life is a testimony to the dignity and the privilege of humble service. She had chosen to be not just the least but to be the servant of the least. As a real mother to the poor, she bent down to those suffering various forms of poverty. Her greatness lies in her ability to give without counting the cost, to give "until it hurts". Her life was a radical living and a bold proclamation of the Gospel.

The cry of Jesus on the Cross, "I thirst" (Jn 19: 28), expressing the depth of God's longing for man, penetrated Mother Teresa's soul and found fertile soil in her heart. Satiating Jesus' thirst for love and for souls in union with Mary, the Mother of Jesus, had become the sole aim of Mother Teresa's existence and the inner force that drew her out of herself and made her run in haste" across the globe to labour for the salvation and the sanctification of the poorest of the poor.

4. "As you did to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me" (Mt 25: 40). This Gospel passage, so crucial in understanding Mother Teresa's service to the poor, was the basis of her faith-filled conviction that in touching the broken bodies of the poor she was touching the body of Christ. It was to Jesus himself, hidden under the distressing disguise of the poorest of the poor, that her service was directed. Mother Teresa highlights the deepest meaning of service - an act of love done to the hungry, thirsty, strangers, naked, sick, prisoners (cf. Mt 25: 34-36) is done to Jesus himself.

Recognizing him, she ministered to him with wholehearted devotion, expressing the delicacy of her spousal love. Thus, in total gift of herself to God and neighbour, Mother Teresa found her greatest fulfilment and lived the noblest qualities of her femininity. She wanted to be a sign of "God's love, God's presence and God's compassion", and so remind all of the value and dignity of each of God's children, "created to love and be loved". Thus was Mother Teresa "bringing souls to God and God to souls" and satiating Christ's thirst, especially for those most in need, those whose vision of God had been dimmed by suffering and pain.

5. "The Son of man also came... to give his life as a ransom for many" (Mk 10: 45). Mother Teresa shared in the Passion of the crucified Christ in a special way during long years of "inner darkness". For her that was a test, at times an agonizing one, which she accepted as a rare "gift and privilege".

In the darkest hours she clung even more tenaciously to prayer before the Blessed Sacrament. This harsh spiritual trial led her to identify herself more and more closely with those whom she served each day, feeling their pain and, at times, even their rejection. She was fond of repeating that the greatest poverty is to be unwanted, to have no one to take care of you.

6. "Lord, let your mercy be on us, as we place our trust in you". How often, like the Psalmist, did Mother Teresa call on her Lord in times of inner desolation: "In you, in you I hope, my God!". Let us praise the Lord for this diminutive woman in love with God, a humble Gospel messenger and a tireless benefactor of humanity. In her we honour one of the most important figures of our time. Let us welcome her message and follow her example.

Virgin Mary, Queen of all the Saints, help us to be gentle and humble of heart like this fearless messenger of Love. Help us to serve every person we meet with joy and a smile. Help us to be missionaries of Christ, our peace and our hope. Amen!

Readings and Themes for the Week of September 06, 2009

Readings for Faith Sharing
Week of September 06, 2009,
Twenty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reading I Isaiah 35:4-7a
The eyes of the blind will be opened.

Psalm 146
“Praise the Lord, my soul!”

Reading II James 2:1-5
God chooses the poor to inherit the kingdom.

Gospel: Mark 7:31-37
Jesus cures a deaf man

THEME:
Opening Up the Power of Jesus

Today’s scriptures are rich with messages for each of us. We are told to be strong and to fear not. We are summoned to show no partiality to those whom we encounter in our daily life. Today’s Gospel reminds us that, at the time we were baptized, our ears were opened to listen to God’s word. We were also enabled to proclaim that saving word to others. Let us open our ears now to hear words that challenge, courage, and heal.

Question for Children:
How do you shun others whom you don’t like?

Question for Youth:
Who are the people in our world today who sometimes go unnoticed?
What could you do to help them?

Question for Adults:
In what ways do you discriminate in your heart against those whom you judge less than fully worthy?

Friday, September 4, 2009

New Video on Ordinations

This is another new video out of the Diocese of New York from Grassroots Films called Ordination 2009.

It's really powerful and moving.

You might remember their earlier video on God in the Streets of New York City. You can see the older video here.

And the new one is here:

Eucharistic Adoration in Valentin Chapel


24 hours of Eucharistic Adoration for the First Friday of the month is happening now in Valentin Chapel until mass at 8 AM Saturday morning. Please take the time to spend a holy hour there.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Lt. Father Verbis Lafleur Memorial Mass


The Friends of Lt. Fr. Lafleur
request your presence to
commemorate the 65th Anniversary
of the death of
Lt. Father Joseph Verbis Lafleur
Chaplain – United States Army Air Corps
on Monday, September 7, 2009
at six-thirty o’clock pm Mass
Saint Landry Catholic Church

Celebrant will be Rev. Richard Vidrine, CHC, USNR



The St. Landry Catholic Church website has a host of resources about Father Lafleur.

Click here and you will find links to a Novena to Father Verbis Lafleur, a special prayer of adoration before the blessed sacrament, two different prayer cards, and a series of rosary meditations that include information about the life of Father Lafleur.

Click here to read an article in the Advocate on the impact Father Lafleur has had on the Lowe family in California.

Click here for a detailed description about the monument and key moments of Father Lafleur's life.

Click here for the St. Landry Catholic Church photo gallery where we have photos of the erection of the monument.

And click here for a 3D interactive view of the monument. This is known as a Photosynth and allows you to zoom in, zoom out, and rotate the monument in 3 dimensions.

Plenary Indulgence today for Year for Priests



As part of the celebration of the Year for Priests, a plenary indulgence is available today on the First Thursday of the month.

To obtain the indulgence the faithful must attend Mass in an oratory or Church and offer prayers to "Jesus Christ, supreme and eternal Priest, for the priests of the Church, or perform any good work to sanctify and mould them to his heart."

The conditions for the faithful for earning a plenary indulgence are to have gone to confession and prayed for the intentions of the Pope.

The mass at St. Landry Catholic Church is in the Valentin Hall Chapel at 12:10 PM. The intentions for today's mass are for Ruby Romero; Dwayne Joubert (BD) and family. Today is the Memorial of St. Gregory the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church. For more information on him, click here.

Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for August is: "That the word of God may be better known, welcomed and lived as the source of freedom and joy".

His mission intention is: "That Christians in Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar, who often meet with great difficulties, may not be discouraged from announcing the Gospel to their brothers, trusting in the strength of the Holy Spirit".

Bulletin for the Weekend of September 06, 2009 is posted


The bulletin for the weekend of September 06, 2009 has been posted. Click here to see it.

The calendar on the website has been updated with all events for the coming week along with prayer intention information and information on the second collection for all of the masses. Take some time to look at our calendar here.

Updates are also being made to our St. Landry Catholic Church blog. You can get to the blog from the church home page under the Bulletins and News section or you can just click here to go to it.

Don't forget, we're also sending out live updates via Twitter. Our Twitter name is StLandryCath. You can see updates by clicking here.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Holy Father's Encyclical Charity in Truth now available


The hardback edition of the Holy Father's encyclical, "Charity in Truth" is now available from Ignatius Press. Ignatius Press, founded by Father Joseph Fessio, produces beautiful editions of all of the books written by the Pope even dating back to his days as a university professor.

The book is available at The Catholic Bookshoppe, 2365 Larkspur Lane, here in Opelousas for $14.95. The phone number there is (337) 948-8050. He also has the matching two prior encyclicals released by the Holy Father, "God is Love" and "Saved by Hope".

The following is the publisher's description of the book.

Benedict XVI has something for everyone in Charity in Truth—from praising profit to defending the environment, from calling for a role for government in the economy to insisting on the necessity of moral transformation and “gratuitousness” in economic life, from the issue of immigration to the importance of technology. However, he also insists on discernment and the purification of our ideas by faith and reason, in order to temper any immoderate and one-sided enthusiasms.

Charity and Truth was expected to be—and is—the Pope's encyclical on "social justice." And indeed "justice" and "rights" find their proper place. But "charity" and "truth" are shown to be the fundamental principles. "Charity is at the heart of the Church's social doctrine", he writes. "Without truth, without trust and love for what is true, there is no social conscience and responsibility, and social action ends up serving private interests and the logic of power".

Benedict calls for "integral human development," which promotes “the good of every man and of the whole man", including the spiritual dimension, “the perspective of eternal life”. Without this, “human progress in this world is denied breathing-space."

What’s more, true development requires “openness to life”. “"If there is lack of respect for the right to life and a natural death,” he writes, “if human conception, gestation and birth are made artificial, if human embryos are sacrificed to research, the conscience of society ends up losing the concept of human ecology and, along with it, that of environmental ecology. It is contradictory to insist that future generations respect the natural environment when our educational system and laws do not help them to respect themselves."

With respect to economics, the Pope insists “every economic decision has a moral consequence.” He avoids the extremes of an unbridled capitalism and socialism. Instead, he holds that “the logic of the market and the logic of the State”—free economic exchange with political oversight and restraint—are not enough to secure human flourishing. There must be a generosity and “gratuitousness” among citizens and nations that goes beyond economic and political systems. “Charity” is necessary for “justice” to be “justice”.

Benedict also argues that technology must not be seen as automatically providing solutions to problems, without the need for morality. Nor must man seek to avoid responsibility for overcoming social problems by rejecting technological development as inevitably evil. Benedict insists that man must be humble yet confident that he can, through faith and reason, make true progress in human development.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Year for Priests - Thought for the week

YEAR FOR PRIESTS

Living the Priesthood

Living out a priestly vocation is every bit as demanding and rewarding as living out the baptismal vocation to holiness that we have all received. And like that other sacrament of vocation - - holy matrimony- - the priesthood has its own “better and worse, good times and bad times.”

A priest might well say to his congregation: “My baptism is about my own growth in holiness. But my priesthood is about your sanctification."

Like any other baptized person, the priest is called to seek the face of God, to know, love, and serve Him in this life, so as to enjoy blessedness with Him forever in the next.

But as an ordained man, the priest’s personal sanctification is advanced by the worthy exercise of his sacred ministry. Every time the priest dons a stole - - whether to celebrate Mass, or to hear confessions, or to anoint the sick, or to baptize, or to preach - - he is living out his priestly vocation and working toward his own sanctification.

Living the priesthood, however, is more than just doing what priests do. It is also being who priests are: a sacramental icon of Christ.

If the priest is to live his priesthood to the fullest, he must be a disciple of the Lord, a man of prayer, a channel of grace, a lover of holiness, a seeker of God, a sinner repentant, a son of the Church, and a father to all.

In this manner, he does not merely exist or survive as a priest, but he truly lives the priesthood that has indelibly marked and transformed his soul for all eternity.

Fr. Joshua Guillory

Prayer Intentions of the Holy Father for September, 2009


Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for August is: "That the word of God may be better known, welcomed and lived as the source of freedom and joy".

His mission intention is: "That Christians in Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar, who often meet with great difficulties, may not be discouraged from announcing the Gospel to their brothers, trusting in the strength of the Holy Spirit".