Wednesday, May 22, 2019


These days I find it hard to even read Catholic news due to the way Bishops, priests and religious are addressed.  In my days of writing, there were standards of respect.  I have in the past done a Blog on women being called “guys” (Blog 8/26/15) . Interestingly enough, young women today do not like to be called ”ladies”  but they have no problem with guys”?  Are we just not thinking straight?

I recently read an article on Bishop Robert Barron (see previous Blog)  and the writer (from the Catholic News Agency) kept referring to him as Barron. So getting off my soapbox, I decided to do a little research.

According to  Marian Therese Horvat, Ph.D.
“the tumultuous and leveling aftermath of Vatican II spelled a death to formalities in the religious sphere. Priests, monks and sisters began to adopt the ways of a world that were becoming increasingly vulgar and egalitarian. Distinguishing titles and marks of respect were considered alienating and only for old-fashioned “establishment” people who were afraid to embrace the “signs of the times.” 

Protocal  states:
When writing about a Bishop he should be referred to as  His Excellency, The Right Reverend Robert Barron, Bishop of Santa Barbara.

A priest should be addressed with his full name: The Reverend  Father James Smith or Father James Smith.  If he is a religious the initials of his order are added, as S.J.  for a Jesuit.  Would you greet Father after Mass ad say “good morning Smith”?

A religious woman should be addressed Sister Benedict Jones, OSB. or in the case of an enclosed nun often the title Mother is used, hence Mother Hildegard George, OSB.

I am making it my mission to write to some of the so-called Catholic news people and give them some hints regarding proper Catholic writing! Perhaps if we begin to have more respect for those who represent Christ to us, there will be an increase in respect for all in our society!


Sunday, May 19, 2019


One of my favorite people, Bishop Robert Barron of Los Angeles Archdiocese, recently gave the Commencement address at Thomas Aquinas College in California.  Some of our favorite interns have graduated from this great school of learning.  Here in part are some of the Bishop’s words from his talk, titled “Greatness of Soul”. Note his emphasis on daily Holy Hour.

But it is my conviction that this is not the time to leave; this is the time to fight. And here I call upon every magnanimous graduate sitting here before me today. Fight by entering the priesthood or religious life and live up to the dignity of your calling; fight by your very holiness of life, becoming the saint that God wants you to become; fight by doing a Holy Hour every day for the purification of the Church; fight by calling for real reform; fight by insisting that the guilty be held accountable; fight by doing the corporal and spiritual works of mercy; fight by evangelizing in your everyday life; fight by ordering your life according to the virtues; fight by playing your priestly role in the sacrifice of the Mass.

And more to it, fight by sanctifying your family, your workplace, the market, the political arena, the world of high finance, the realms of sports and entertainment. In other words, be what the Church is supposed to be in the world. In the second book of Samuel, we hear that David’s corruption with Bathsheba commenced precisely when the King, instead of going on campaign as was his wont, lingered at home, indulging his private desires. As Pope Francis has often reminded us, when the Church fails to go on campaign, when it turns in on itself, corruption is never far behind. Don’t wait for other reformers to arise; this is your moment to meet this crucial moral challenge. And no pusillanimous people need apply!

Thursday, May 16, 2019


Sharing a birthday with me  (December 12, the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe) is a soon to become Spanish saint. (see BLOG 8/19/2017)
On May 18 in Madrid, GUADALUPE ORTIZ de LANDAZURI a laywoman, will become the first numerary of Opus Dei to be beatified. A chemist, university teacher, and close associate of St. Josemaría Escrivá, she was known for her strong character, big heart, and cheerfulness.

Opus Dei was made a personal prelature by St. John Paul II in 1982. It was founded by St. Josemaría in 1928 and teaches that everyone is called to personal holiness in and through their ordinary lives.
Bl. Guadalupe met St. Josemaria in 1944. She later said, “I had the very clear idea that God was speaking to me through that priest.” From that point she felt a calling to serve Christ through her life and work, and several months later, at the age of 27, she became a numerary  (someone who makes  herself fully available to the work of the prelature).
In 1950, St. Josemaria asked her to bring Opus Dei to Mexico. While there, she enrolled in a doctoral program in chemical sciences. She and her associates emphasized concern for the poor and service to the Church and society.
Among the initiatives they spearheaded was a mobile medical clinic which went home-to-home in the poorest neighborhoods providing free care and medicine. She also promoted education among poor, indigenous Mexicans.
Six years later she was asked to go to Rome, but not long after arriving she began to suffer conditions of a heart condition which meant she had to return to Spain. Despite the symptoms of the condition, including tiredness from walking and climbing stairs, she never complained.
She was known to make frequent visits to the Blessed Sacrament to speak with Christ and was also devoted to friends and students and those with whom she lived.
In 1975, doctors decided to operate on her heart. The operation, at the university clinic in Navarra, was successful, but several days afterward she died..

Her brother and sister-in-law  are also up for canonization- 
(Venerable Eduardo Landazuri and Venerable Laura Otaeguri-  BLOGS  8/2017)

Monday, May 13, 2019


The next young woman being considered for canonization could become the patron saint of young people with eye disorders. 

SERVANT OF GOD REBECA ROCAMORA NADAL  was born in 1975 in Granja Rocamora, a tiny village south of the Spanish province of Alicante. One of four children, Rebecca grew up in a profoundly religious environment She was  a typical child but, at the same time mature and reflective, with a marked inclination for the spiritual life.

At  age 10, a pituitary tumor gave her an insidious form of diabetes, causing ocular paralysis.  The ordeal of radiotherapy  did not alter her sunny disposition, but rather she gave courage to other children in the hospital.  She developed a great love of  Our Lady and gratitude for her suffering even when  the therapy weakened her body.

 At  age 16 she become a catechist, preparing children for their first  Communion with much joy and enthusiasm. As a true lover of Jesus, she succeeded in infecting the little ones with her same love.

Rebeca grew to like sports, crafts, books and adventure films, music, dancing, as any young woman of her age, yet she delighted in making others happy.

In 1995 she was diagnosed with  a tumor  on the optic nerve, which was to prove fatal.   She became bed-ridden  yet still managed  to transmit peace and serenity to anyone who approached her, even more than before. For this reason, whoever visited her  left  consoled. “Faith in the Holy Cross is my strength", she would say. The cross united her more and more to God and to the desire to accept His Will.  Daily Mass was celebrated in her room. She dies at the age of 20.

Today she is still remembered in her region of Spain as the "smiling catechist".

Friday, May 10, 2019


SERVANT of GOD MARIACRISTINA CELLA MOCELLIN was born in Monza, Italy on August 18, 1969, the first child of Giuseppe Cella and Caterina Smaniotto, followed by her brother Daniele. 

While attending the "Regina Pacis" linguistic high school in Cusano Milanino, she began to consider the possibility of joining the Sisters of Charity of Saint Joan Antide Thouret, whom she knew in the parish. In the summer of 1985, on vacation in Valstagna (Vicenza), she met Carlo Mocellin. Their friendship soon became love.   

She recognized that her true vocation was to form a "truly Christian" family, and in August 1986, she and Carlo became engaged.

Just a year after the engagement, a tumor appeared on her left thigh, but the couple did not let this hinder their plans. Her treatments were successful, so on February 2, 1991 they were married. The new family established their residence in Carpanè, in the Veneto region, the area where Carlos came from.  Ten months later  their son,  Francesco was born,  followed a year and a half  later by their daughter Lucia.

In the autumn of 1993,  while pregnant with her third child, Maria Cristina was again attacked by the tumor, at the same point where it occurred five years earlier. She and Carlo decided that she would have surgery, but not do the chemotherapy, in order to save the life of their unborn child.  After the birth of Riccardo, on 28 July,  she undertook medical treatments, which were not as successful as before. 

Due to the delay of treatment, the tumor proved fatal. The words of her diary, a sign of constant and progressive growth in faith and humanity, exude an irrepressible love, making  her last days serene.. 

Preparing to accept, once again, God's will, the young mother prepared to leave her loved ones , which she did October 22, 1995, in Bassano del Grappa.

Her testimony, in particular through a letter she had left for Riccardo, began to circulate among the faithful and led to the opening, in the diocese of Padua, of the canonical process for ascertaining his heroic virtues. 

Certainly this brave young woman followed in the footsteps of another great Italian saint, Gianna Molla, who gave her own life that her child would have life.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019


May 4 MARIA CONCEPTION  de ARMIDA, known as CONCHITA  (see BLOG 4/19/17) was beatified. She was born during the Mexican Civil War and  grew up during the Revolution and the religious persecutions that were a part of it. She was married and  widowed at age 39.  She had nine children.

As a mystic, she reported that she heard God telling her: "Ask me for a long suffering life and to write a lot... That's your mission on earth". She never claimed direct visions of Jesus and Mary but spoke of Jesus through her prayers and meditations.

She was foundress of many religious organizations which included the Apostolate of the Cross and the Congregation of Sisters of the Cross of the Sacred Heart of Jesus founded in 1897,
and the Congregation of Missionaries of the Holy Spirit founded in 1914.
Though her children claim they rarely saw her take the time to write, she left 65,000 hand-written pages of mystical meditations.

She is the first Mexican lay woman to be beatified.

"I carry within me three lives, all very strong: family life with its multiple sorrows of a thousand kinds, that is, the life of a mother; the life of the Works of the Cross with all its sorrows and weight, which at times crushes me until I have no strength left; and the life of the spirit or interior life, which is the heaviest of all, with its highs and lows, its tempests and struggles, its light and darkness. Blessed be God for everything!"

The New York Court of Appeals has dismissed an appeal of an earlier judgement allowing VENERABLE FULTON SHEEN’s  (see BLOG 3/22/12)remains to be moved to the Cathedral of St. Mary in Peoria, in accordance with his family’s wishes.  The May 2 dismissal of the Archdiocese of New York’s appeal could pave the way for the Illinois-born archbishop’s beatification, after almost three years of litigation

 “Although the New York Archdiocese may technically have legal options remaining, they are contrary to the wishes of Archbishop Sheen and his family, and would serve no genuine purpose except to delay the eventual transfer of Archbishop Sheen’s remains,” it added.

Archbishop Sheen served as host of the “Catholic Hour” radio show and the television show “Life is Worth Living.” He authored many books, with proceeds supporting foreign missions. He headed the Society for the Propagation of the Faith at one point in his life, and continued to be a leading figure among Catholics in the U.S. until his death.

The Peoria diocese opened the cause for Sheen’s canonization in 2002 after Archdiocese of New York said it would not explore the case. In 2012, Pope Benedict XVI recognized the heroic virtues of the archbishop.

However, Bishop Daniel Jenky of Peoria suspended the beatification cause in September 2014 on the grounds that the Holy See expected Sheen’s remains to be in the Peoria diocese.

The Archbishops’s will had declared his wish to be buried in the Archdiocese of New York Calvary Cemetery. Soon after he died, Cardinal Terence Cooke of New York asked Joan Sheen Cunningham, the Archbishop’s niece and closest living relative, if his remains could be placed in the crypt of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City, and she consented.

Later  the niece has since said that her uncle would have wanted to have been interred in Peoria if he knew that he would be considered for sainthood. In 2016, she filed a legal complaint seeking to have her uncle’s remains moved to the Cathedral of St. Mary in Peoria.

If I had a relative up for sainthood, believe me nothing would get in the way of their canonization.  Let’s  hope this is the end of the feud and the process can rapidly continue to give this great man  of prayer his due!

Archbishop Sheen’s intercession is credited with the miraculous recovery of a pronounced stillborn American baby from the Peoria area. In June 2014, a panel of theologians that advises the Congregation for the Causes of Saints ruled that the baby’s recovery was miraculous – a key step necessary before someone is beatified.


 A great Catholic humanitarian has died today. JEAN VANIER, age of 90, spent his whole life giving hope to suffering people: "The message of the Gospel is to become men and women of compassion. If you become a man or a woman of compassion, you will be like Jesus".

Jean Vanier, founded L'Arche (1964), a community which supports people with disabilities (see BLOG 2/26/14). The community is active all over the world with about 150 centers. Jean had been suffering from cancer and was being cared for at a L’Arche in Paris.

Jean was born in Geneva on September 10, 1928 of  very devote parents, Georges and Pauline Vanier (see BLOG 2/13/14) Jean was a former officer in the Canadian Navy and received  the Templeton Prize in 2015, one of the highest awards given every year to persons from the religious world.

"Our mission  is to encounter a world of extreme weakness, poverty and suffering, people who have often been rejected... L’Arche is a place of reconciliation where people of very different religions and cultures can meet and this transforms the lives of people with disabilities, but also transforms the volunteers. L’Arche, after all, is a place of celebration where the aim is for everyone to be happy... We want to be a sign of the importance of people with disabilities, because they have a message to give, but few know it: they, in fact, were chosen to be the great witnesses of God.”

Jean felt that people with disabilities lead us to God and whoever has compassion for the other is similar to Jesus.

I believe strongly that today it is necessary to create communities that live the values of the Gospel: to live together, to live the Beatitudes and to discover that the life of the Beatitudes, the life of the Gospel can be lived very simply by living together. The message of the Gospel is to become men and women of compassion. If you become a man or a woman of compassion, you will be like Jesus.

Jean Vanier emphasized the importance of joy: "I think the whole vision of evangelization is joyful, because we have received the Good News! The world is not only a world of violence, but the Word made flesh, God came to tell us something. God loves humanity, God is present. This does not mean that there is no struggle against evil. There is violence in the world; there is violence in me and in all of us. But Jesus is stronger and we keep the hope that He will help us.”

Jean Vanier was a man who truly practiced what he preached.  He always had a twinkle in his eye ad a smile for everyone.  May the angels carry him to his well earned place with the saints!