Happy Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. Blessed Pope Pius IX, in defining this dogma, wrote: “From the very beginning, and before time began, the eternal Father chose and prepared for his only-begotten Son a Mother in whom the Son of God would become incarnate and from whom, in the blessed fullness of time, he would be born into this world. Above all creatures did God so loved her that truly in her was the Father well pleased with singular delight. Therefore, far above all the angels and all the saints so wondrously did God endow her with the abundance of all heavenly gifts poured from the treasury of his divinity that this mother, ever absolutely free of all stain of sin, all fair and perfect, would possess that fullness of holy innocence and sanctity than which, under God, one cannot even imagine anything greater, and which, outside of God, no mind can succeed in comprehending fully” (Bull, Ineffabilis Deus).
Many will also make their consecration to Jesus through Mary today, according to the formula of St. Louis-Marie de Montfort. Most, however, despite their good intentions, will not make much progress. St. Louis-Marie said: “As the essential of this devotion consists in the interior which it ought to form, it will not be equally comprehended by everybody. Some will stop at what is exterior in it, and will go further, and these will be the greatest number. Some, in small number, will enter into its inward spirit; but they will mount only one step. Who will mount to the second step? Who will get as far as the third? Lastly, who will so advance as to make this devotion his habitual state?” (“True Devotion to Mary”, #119).
If you want to be in the small number who advances to the third step, here is your solution: To Jesus through Mary. This is the book which shows you what to do AFTER you’ve made your consecration. Check it out here.
Today is the Feast of St. Ambrose, the great archbishop of Milan. His relics are in the Basilica of Sant’Ambrogio in Milan.
St. Ambrose is the one in white.
Here are some images of the Lombard Gothic Duomo of Milan.
Excavations beneath the Duomo have uncovered the baptistery where St. Ambrose baptized St. Augustine.
Here is the crypt-tomb of St. Charles Borromeo in the Duomo of Milan.
If you want to know the secrets to a happier or better marriage (and every marriage can improve), then you would do well to read Fr. Emil Neubert’s “Mary and the Christian Family”. This is the ONLY book which discusses the main cause of marital problems, and shows you how to overcome it. That’s not an exaggeration, and you’ll discover why when you click here.
St. Maximilian Kolbe and Ven. Frank Duff, Founder of the Legion of Mary, were so impressed with Fr. Neubert’s works that they both struck up friendships with him, and worked tirelessly to promote the sale of his books. If your marriage hasn’t turned out the way you wanted or isn’t going where you want it to go fast enough, and you’re ready to transform it, then see for yourself by clicking here.
Today is the Feast of St. Robert Francis Cardinal Bellarmine, one of two Jesuit Doctors of the Church. The other is St. Peter Canisius. St. Robert was one of the most learned men in the history of the Church. When Pope Clement VIII created St. Robert a cardinal, he said of him: “The Church of God has not his equal in learning. He was the nephew of Pope Marcellus II.
St. Robert is buried in the Roman church of Sant’Ignazio. To the left of him is the altar where St. Aloysius Gonzaga is buried. St. Robert was St. Aloysius’ spiritual director, and he was so impressed with the youthful saint that he asked to be buried “at the feet of his ghostly child.”
St. Robert once said: “If you are wise, then, know that you have been created for the glory of God and your own eternal salvation. This is your goal; this is the center of your life; this is the treasure of your heart. If you reach this goal, you will find happiness. If you fail to reach it, you will find misery.”
There can be only one shortest distance between two points, and the shortest distance between God and us is Mary. St. Robert knew this as well as anyone.
Now you get to discover not only his previously untranslated Marian writings, which were compiled and translated from the thousands of pages of his (Opera Omnia) [Collected Works], but also previously untranslated biographical material about him. Then so you get to see exactly how he lived the Marian doctrines he defended and the Marian devotion he taught. So, be sure to check out The Marian Writings of St. Robert Bellarmine by clicking here.
Today is the Feast of St. Maria Goretti, a martyr for purity. She is buried in the crypt of the Sanctuary of St. Maria Goretti in Nettuno. Enjoy!
Close-up of St. Maria Goretti.
St. Maria Goretti
The Sanctuary of St. Maria Goretti
Nettuno is a beautiful beach town.
Relics of St. Maria Goretti
Nettuno seen from the Sanctuary of St. Maria Goretti
Monument to St. Maria Goretti
“Jesus wants to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart” — Our Lady to Sr. Lucia at Fatima. In addition to celebrating the Feast of St. Anthony of Padua today, the Church also celebrates the Feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Catholics do NOT worship Mary. If you want the real scoop, click here, and you will discover what the real deal is.