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St. André Bessette

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St. André Bessette

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January 6 Saint of the Day

January 6 Saint of the Day

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Saint John Neumann was the first member of his community, the Redemptorists, to profess vows in the United States. He did missionary work in Maryland, Virginia, and Ohio and became the bishop of Philadelphia. Noted for his humility and organizational skills, he helped form the Church in the new world.

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Liturgy of the Hours - 2nd Reading

In the world, yet not of it

From a homily on the Gospels by Saint Gregory the Great, pope
I would like to urge you to forsake everything, but that I do not presume to do. Yet, if you cannot give up everything of this world, at least keep what belongs to the world in such a way that you yourself are not kept prisoner by the world. Whatever you possess must not possess you; whatever you own must be under the power of your soul; for if your soul is overpowered by the love of this world’s goods, it will be totally at the mercy of its possessions.
In other words, we make use of temporal things, but our hearts are set on what is eternal. Temporal goods help us on our way, but our desire must be for those eternal realities which are our goal. We should give no more than a side glance at all that happens in the world, but the eyes of our soul are to be focused right ahead; for our whole attention must be fixed on those realities which constitute our goal.
Whatever is vicious must be utterly eradicated, wrenched away not merely from being put into act but even from being so much as thought of. No carnal pleasure, no worldly curiosity, no surge of ambition must keep us from the Lord’s Supper. But further, our minds should merely skirt even the good deeds we perform in this life; in this way, the physical things which give us pleasure will serve our bodily needs without hindering the soul’s progress. You see, my brothers, I dare not say to you, give up everything. Yet, if you will, you can give everything up while keeping it, provided you handle temporal things in such a way that your whole mind is directed toward what is eternal. A man can use the world as if he were not using it, if he makes all external needs minister to the support of his life without allowing them to dominate his soul. They remain external to him and under his control, serving him without halting the soul’s drive to higher things. For such men, everything in this world is there for their use, not to be desired. Nothing should interfere with your soul’s longing; no created pleasure in the world should ensnare you.
If the object of love is what is good, then the soul should take its delight in the higher good, the things of heaven. If the object of fear is what is evil, then we should keep before ourselves the things that are eternally evil. In this way, if the soul sees that we should have a greater love and a greater fear about what concerns the next life, it will never cling to this life.
To help us to achieve all this we have the help of the mediator between God and man. Through him we shall obtain all this the more quickly, the more we burn with a great love for him, who lives and reigns with the Father and the Holy Spirit, for ever and ever. Amen.

St. André Bessette

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St. André Bessette

St. André Bessette

SOURCE: CatholicKidsBulletin.com

A saint for Catholic Teachers

When a young Bohemian immigrant arrived in New York City on a rainy June day in 1836 his hopes for priesthood were uncertain. Due to an ordination moratorium imposed by his homeland’s government, St. John Neumann could not be ordained at home. Forsaking the comforts of home and family, desiring only his life’s oblation in love and service, Neumann chose to go to America. He read accounts of such storied missionaries as Frederic Baraga — a current candidate for sainthood — and he hoped to follow in their footsteps. Little did the young seminarian know when he set foot on American soil that the path God had in store would result in his canonization as the country’s first male saint..

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SOURCE: OSV Kids!

Catechist Magazine Fun Activity

What can we do?

  • Let’s be “welcoming people” like St. André was. Let’s think about how we can welcome people who are new to our school or new to our church or new to our country. How can we reach out to others?
  • Let’s learn about the Congregation of the Holy Cross, the order to which St. André belonged. We can look up the order’s work around the world at holycrosscongregation.org. One of their ministries is André House in Phoenix, AZ, which serves those who are homeless and poor.
  • Let’s talk about St. Joseph, for whom St. André had a special devotion. Saint Joseph is the patron saint of Canada and of the Universal Church. Saint Joseph was always faithful to what God asked of him. We can ask St. Joseph to pray for us as St. André did.
RELATED PAGE: Celebrating Saint André Bessette

Saint John Neumann

As a boy, John Neumann lived in Bohemia, which is now part of Czech Republic. He studied hard, for he wanted to be a missionary priest in America. By the time he was twenty-four, he had learned six languages and had completed his studies for the priesthood. He was not ordained, however, because his bishop thought there were enough priests in his country. So John Neumann decided to leave for America, hoping to be ordained there. He said goodbye to his parents and brother and sailed for the United States. When he arrived, he had one suit of clothes and one dollar in his pocket. Three weeks later, the bishop of New York ordained him.
Father John’s first work was with the German-speaking people in mission parishes near Buffalo, New York. He was not considered very handsome, and some people disliked him and his ways. Priests at that time traveled on horseback and went long distances to care for people in neighboring towns and villages. People laughed at the clumsy way Father John rode. Because he was short, his feet did not reach the stirrups. Children made fun of him. John remained silent, however, and continued going about teaching religion, visiting the sick, and training teachers.
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from Saints Kit
SOURCE: LoyolaPress.co

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St. André Bessette

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