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our lady of lourdes st bernadette soubirous grotto cave february 11
Our Lady of Lourdes – St. Bernadette

On February 11, 1858, a 14 year old girl named Bernadette Soubirous had an encounter with a "beautiful lady" when she was gathering firewood on the French side of the Pyrenees, near a town called Lourdes.  Here she tells the story of that encounter with...

st. don john bosco photo January 31 youth ministry principles boys
Principles for Youth Ministry – John Bosco

Here Don John Bosco provides some guiding principles for youth ministry based on his legendary success at evangelizing and teaching young boys on the streets of Turin Italy during the days of the Industrial Revolution. In a day when harsh corporal punishment was the...

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Marriage & Family – Vatican II

This excerpt from Gaudium et Spes, Vatican II's Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, affirms the sanctity of marriage and the family....

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Blessing of Christmas Manger or Nativity Scene

Short services of blessing of a Christmas Manger or Nativity Scene that are actually part of the official liturgy of the Roman Rite of the Catholic Church. But they can be conducted by lay men or women in their own homes. Both full...

christmas tree blessing book bless
Blessing a Christmas Tree

The Book of Blessings contains a short service to bless a Christmas tree which can be led by lay people in their homes. To make your Christmas tree more meaningful, use it this year and every Christmas!...

image our lady of guadalupe tilma Juan Diego feast december 12 apparition tepeyac mexico roses
Our Lady of Guadalupe – Story of the Apparition

This is an excerpt that recounts the famous apparition of the Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Guadalupe, to the Indian, Juan Diego, on Tepeyac hill outside of Mexico City in the year 1531. The annual Feast commemorating this marvelous event is celebrated on December 12.[dropcaps...

advent season charles borromeo
Advent Season – Charles Borromeo

This reflection on the meaning of the Season of Advent, the time of preparation for the Coming of Jesus Christ, is an excerpt of a Pastoral Letter written by St. Charles Borromeo, bishop of Milan, Italy, in the 16th Century....

four evangelists francis xavier missions mission duty evangelize december 3
Duty to Evangelize – Francis Xavier

St. Francis Xavier, Patron Saint of Foreign Missions, was clearly one of the greatest missionaries and evangelists of all time. Though not all of us are called to foreign missions, the Second Vatican Council, Pope Paul VI, and Pope John Paul II remind us forcefully...

advent wreathe blessing
Blessing of the Advent Wreathe

This short rite of blessing is one of the sacramentals, official liturgical prayer, though it may be led by lay people. It is perfect for the blessing of the Advent wreathe in a home. This brief service is a wonderful way to begin a family’s...