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MONDAY      January 4, 1999      SECTION ONE       vol 10, no. 1

To print out entire text of Today's issue, print this section as well as SECTION TWO

Intelligent philosophical and theological formation must never be lacking in the Church.

     On the feast of one of the first women Doctors of the Church Saint Teresa of Jesus, the Holy Father issued his 13th encyclical on the foundations of faith and reason entitled Fides et Ratio. Today we continue with the tenth part of this lengthy and important encyclical in installments spread out over several issues. The twelfth installment continues the fifth chapter The Magisterium's interventions in philosophical matters focusing on The Church's interest in philosophy in which the Holy Father continues to cite the wisdom of that angelic Doctor of the Church Saint Thomas Aquinas and adds to it the sage direction of Pope Leo XIII in his encyclicals. For those wanting to read the entire encyclical, go to Fides et Ratio For the twelfth installment, click on THE VICAR OF CHRIST SPEAKS.


The knowledge of faith and the demands of philosophical reason

"For all of my children call upon St. Joseph and seek his powerful intercession."

      Those words above from the Blessed Virgin Mary in Message #333 were imparted to the Hidden Flower of the Immaculate Heart on the feast of Saint Joseph the Worker on May 1, 1993 in which Our Lady beseeches all to imitate her "beloved earthly chaste spouse" in these dire times. In her Message #332 preceding this on April 29, the Blessed Mother does not mince words in warning her little ones of the wiles of the world and satan. For the messages 332 and 333, click on "I SOLEMNLY TELL YOU..."

Messages Three Hundred-Thirty-Two and Three Hundred-Thirty-Three

Message Three Hundred-Thirty-Two, April 29, 1993

(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart of Mary)
(Feast of Saint Catherine of Siena)

Message Three Hundred-Thirty-Three, May 1, 1993

(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart)
[Feast of Saint Joseph the Worker]


      Today is the Feast of the first American-born saint Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, known affectionately to all as "Mother Seton" who left her mark from sea to shining sea as the founder of the American Daughters of Charity and as a religious educator. Tomorrow we celebrate another educator, the American Bishop Saint John Neumann. For the readings, liturgy, meditations and vignettes on these two saints, click on LITURGY FOR THE DAY.

Monday, January 4, 1998

Feast of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, Religious founder and educator

      Considered the first American-born saint, Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, known as Mother Seton, went on to found numerous schools throughout the eastern seaboard. Born Elizabeth Ann Bayley on August 28, 1774 in New York City, she was raised an Episcopalian and married William Magee Seton at the age of 20. While raising five children, Elizabeth founded the Society for the Relief of Poor Widows with Small Children when she was only 23. In 1803, having lost their income and becoming poor themselves, the family went to stay with Catholic friends in Pisa, Italy both for economic and health reasons. While there William died leaving Elizabeth a widow. Influenced by her Italian friends, she returned to New York in 1805 and converted to Catholicism. Though she was ostracized by her own family and friends, the director of St. Mary's Seminary in Baltimore offered her the opportunity to open a school in that city. At the age of 35 she, along with four other widows, founded the Sisters of St. Joseph and began a Catholic school in Emmitsburg, Maryland exclusively for poor kids who could not afford tuition. The new nuns' rule was approved by Archbishop John Carroll of Baltimore in 1812 and a year later, having been elected Mother Superior, Mother Seton took vows with eighteen others on July 19, 1813. It officially signaled the beginning of the Order of the Sisters of Charity in America, the first religious society formed in the United States and patterned after the rule of Saint Vincent de Paul. Mother Seton not only opened schools, training teachers herself, but also wrote most of the textbooks for the children. When she died on January 4, 1821 in Emmitsburg, there were already 20 communities and schools established. Pope John XXIII beatified her in 1963 and his successor Pope Paul VI canonized her in 1975 as the first American-born saint. Her legacy lives on. Founding the Catholic school concept she did signaled the advent of the Catholic parochial school system that would become the backbone of the Church in America until after Vatican II, when the new-age concept of "Total Catholic Education" spawned by satan himself, would not only infiltrate every diocese, but kill the long respected tradition of each parish and parent taking an active interest in the young Catholic leaders of tomorrow through their selfless time, talents, and treasures. In a time of great need, the sisters of every Order disappeared and the government began dictating what should and shouldn't be taught; the very reason Mother Seton began her schools in the first place, so that Catholicism would be at the root of any education. Ironically, loyal Catholics, when faced with today's alternatives have turned back to the very way Mother Seton herself was first educated - at home, through home schooling where the parents take total charge of their children as the Church teaches. Maybe it is no coincidence that the leader in Catholic home schooling today is called the Mother Seton Home Study!

Tuesday, January 5, 1998

Feast of Saint John Neumann, Bishop and Religious Educator

      The practice of Forty Hours Devotion in the United States can be attributed to a Czechoslovakian in the nineteenth century who came to our shores to become a Redemptorist priest and foster Catholic schools and education throughout the U.S.A. This man was Saint John Neumann, born on March 28, 1811 and ordained in 1936. In 1852 he was appointed bishop of Philadelphia where he worked tirelessy to establish the Catholic school system in America. He labored especially with European immigrants in mind. He spoke twelve languages fluently and wrote numerous books and two catechisms as well as a Bible History for the students. His was a life of firsts, becoming the first Redemptorist to make his profession in America and the first bishop from America to be ordained a saint. He died on January 5, 1860 just as the Civil War was breaking out, but he was not forgotten and his legacy has served many a college student through the years with almost each college campus throughout the country providing a Catholic oasis for the students known as "Neumann clubs." He was ordained in 1977 by Pope Paul VI.


     Today's Prayer is taken from the Opening Prayer for the Mass honoring Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton

     Lord God, You blessed Mother Elizabeth Seton with gifts of grace as wife and mother, educator and foundress, so that she might spend her life in service to your people. Through her example and prayers may we learn to express our love for You in love for our fellow men and women.

Events in Church History

     On this date in 236 Pope Saint Eutychian was elected as the 27th successor of Peter during a time of great persecution under the Roman Emperor Aurelian. He introduced the vestment "Dalmatic" into the Roman rite. For more on that, see CATHOLIC CANVAS. For other events throughout the centuries that are memorable in Church history today. Click on MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES

Historical Events in Church Annals for January 4:

Daily Dose of curious contents of the Church

   The "Dalmatic", introduced by Pope Saint Eutychian is an outer liturgical vestment with short open sleeves, an opening for the head, and open at the sides from the hem to the shoulders and is worn over the alb and stole. It is so named since it was originally made of Dalmatian wool. It reaches to or below the knees and is worn by the deacon at solemn Mass or religious functions. (source: The Catholic Encyclopedia, Thomas Nelson, Publishers)

December 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message

For more on Medjugorje, click on MEDJUGORJE AND MORE

Click here to go to SECTION TWO or click here to return to the graphics front page of this issue.

January 4, 1999 volume 10, no. 1   DAILY CATHOLIC