The gospels are bereft of details regarding Mary’s parents – Jesus’ grandparents – not even offering their names. What we do know comes from writings excluded the canon of Scripture, in particular the Protogospel of James. Nevertheless, the cult of Saint Anne existed in the 6th century in the Church of Constantinople and early in the 8th century in Rome. In the 13th and 14th centuries, popular devotion to Anne increased, as seen by the number of churches bearing her name. At the request of some English bishops petitioned by parishioners, Pope Urban VI made her feast an annual celebration. Joachim has been honoured in the East from earliest days, but in the West only since the 16th century. Their names were entered into the Roman calendar in 1584.
The birth of John the Baptist was one of the earliest feasts to be named to a particular day on the Church calendar. June 24 was chosen as it is six months before the birth of Christ. With its proximity to the summer solstice, it signifies the waning of the light, while the birth of Jesus near the winter solstice marks ...More
Tradition says these two apostles, honoured since the earliest days, were martyred in Rome. Peter, a fisherman, was chosen by Jesus to be his disciple. After Simon confessed that Jesus was the Christ, Jesus changed Simon’s name to Peter and told him that it was on this rock (petra) that he would ...More
Paul was born in Tarsus, a Roman citizen raised and educated as a Pharisee. His experience of the risen Christ resulted in his conversion from a zealous persecutor of Christians to an apostle. In the Acts of the Apostles his friend Luke describes Paul’s missionary journeys between the years 45 and 57, his return to Jerusalem, his subsequent arrest and his appeal to Caesar. Here history ends but tradition tells us that Paul was martyred for the faith about the year 66. Paul called himself the “apostle of the Gentiles”.
First Friday at St. Francis de Sales Parish
On the First Friday of every month we begin our Holy Hour with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament at 6 p.m. Our hour includes the sung Chaplet of Divine Mercy, quiet time for prayer and reflection and ...
First Friday at St. Francis de Sales Parish
On the First Friday of every month we begin our Holy Hour with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament at 6 p.m. Our hour includes the sung Chaplet of Divine Mercy, quiet time for prayer and reflection and the opportunity to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and concludes with Benediction. Mass is then celebrated at 7 p.m.
First Friday Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus
Devotion to the Sacred Heart, as we know it, began about the year 1672. On repeated occasions, Jesus appeared to Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, a Visitation nun, in France, and during these apparitions He explained to her the devotion to His Sacred Heart as He wanted people to practice it. He asked to be honored in the symbol of His Heart of flesh; he asked for acts of reparation, for frequent Communion, Communion on the First Friday of the month, and the keeping of the Holy Hour.
When the Catholic Church approved the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, she did not base her action only on the visions of Saint Margaret Mary. The Church approved the devotion on its own merits. There is only one Person in Jesus, and that Person was at the same time God and Man. His Heart, too, is Divine -- it is the Heart of God.
There are two things that must always be found together in the devotion to the Sacred Heart: Christ's Heart of flesh and Christ's love for us. True devotion to the Sacred Heart means devotion to the Divine Heart of Christ insofar as His Heart represents and recalls His love for us.
In honoring the Heart of Christ, our homage lingers on the Person of Jesus in the fullness of His love. This love of Christ for us was the moving force of all he did and suffered for us -- in Nazareth, on the Cross, in giving Himself in the Blessed Sacrament, in His teaching and healing, in His praying and working. When we speak of the Sacred Heart, we mean Jesus showing us His Heart, Jesus all love for us and all lovable.
Jesus Christ is the incarnation of God's infinite love. The Human Nature which the Son of God took upon Himself was filled with love and kindness that has never found an equal. He is the perfect model of love of God and neighbor.
Every day of His life was filled with repeated proofs of "Christ's love that surpasses all knowledge" (Eph 3:19). Jesus handed down for all time the fundamental feature of His character: "Take My yoke upon your shoulders and learn from Me, for I am meek and humble of Heart" (Mt 11:29). He invited all, refusing none, surprising friends and rivals by His unconditional generosity.
The meaning of love in the life of Jesus was especially evident in His sufferings. Out of love for His Father He willed to undergo the death of the Cross. "The world must know that I love the Father and do just as the Father has commanded Me" (Jn 14:31).
The love that Jesus bore toward us also urged Him to undergo the death of the Cross. At the Last Supper, He said, "There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for one's friends" (Jn 15:13)
The Heart of Jesus never ceases to love us in heaven. He sanctifies us through the Sacraments. These are inexhaustible fountains of grace and holiness which have their source in the boundless ocean of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
First Friday Promises
According to the words of Christ through His apparitions to St. Margaret Mary, there are several promises to those that practice the First Friday Devotions:
On 9 consecutive First Fridays , a person is to attend Holy Mass and receive communion. If the need arises in order to receive communion in a state of grace, a person should also make use of the Sacrament of Penance before attending Mass.
1. I will give them all of the graces necessary for their state of life.
2. I will establish peace in their houses.
3. I will comfort them in all their afflictions.
4. I will be their strength during life and above all during death.
5. I will bestow a large blessing upon all their undertakings.
6. Sinners shall find in My Heart the source and the infinite ocean of mercy.
7. Tepid souls shall grow fervent.
8. Fervent souls shall quickly mount to high perfection.
9. I will bless every place where a picture of my heart shall be set up and honored.
10. I will give to priests the gift of touching the most hardened hearts.
11. Those who shall promote this devotion shall have their names written in My Heart, never to be blotted out.
12. I promise you in the excessive mercy of My Heart that My all-powerful love will grant to all those who shall receive communion on the First Friday in nine consecutive months the grace of final penitence; they shall not die in My disgrace nor without receiving their sacraments; My Divine Heart shall be their safe refuge in this last moment.