Le blog de la Bergerie Un site catholique et bilingue, franco-américain, sur la foi, le monde et la culture, avec des prières, des recettes et des photos de nature, et surtout pour exprimer ma reconnaissance et ma confiance . A Catholic French-American worldview based on faith and reason, gratitude and trust, with articles and prayers, recipes and photos of nature.
little flowers of faith: daisies


2021 March: site is being updated, reformatted, will be masked and safe, and vaccinated,

same name, same interest, better photos yet, more to come soon. Vive le carême 2021!

sunset over the Pacific Ocean February 2021



I posted this on facebook a few years ago: Today in the liturgical calendar it is the feast of The Triumph Of The Cross. In terms of “what’s in the news today?” I call the triumph over death the biggest and best news in the world! It answers the question of “where are we going to? and Why?”. Even for the here and now, as far as dealing with sufferings and challenges, it offers the answers of the way of humility, obedience, complete trust and unending compassion. UPDATE MARCH 25 2020 : FEAST OF THE ANNUNCIATION: I am in the chalet and I am confined (as millions of others) and the threat of the Coronavirus is hanging over our heads... BUT today is the Feast of the Annunciation, and the wonderful FIAT of Mary started an amazing change for the world, for all of us.
Filled with hope, I turn to her asking for her help in:
1) begging her Son to guide us through the weeks ahead,
2) stopping the spread of this virus!
3) caring and comforting all the sick and dying in the meantime,
5) fortifying all the workers out there fighting so hard today for us,
6) guiding all of our leaders, worldwide, to take appropriate responses, and finally
7) strengthening each one of us to do whatever it is we can for our neighbor, for the world, for the glory of God…
And I ask all this in the name of Jesus, to Mary most Holy, Theotokos, turning also towards the angels and the saints!

Mary listened and pondered in her heart...
Nazareth is Nazareth because of Mary’s faith. Nazareth is the place where Mary listened and pondered in her heart. How often we are told that Mary “treasured these things in her heart,” i.e., in her centre. Nazareth is the call to be alone with God alone and from that experience we see, we know, what we have to do. This is what the prayer of contemplation is. Fr. Coste says, “a component part of the Marist spirit is the contemplative dimension, integrated into the very heart of the life and responsibility of Marists. Not loving solitude and silence means still being afraid of self, afraid of standing before self and before God, afraid of being no more than who one is. The day one accepts this confrontation with solitude and silence, then one can enter Nazareth and become identified with this third great foundational image of our congregation.”
When Fr. Colin says that he goes to Nazareth he is not forming a picture of the home in Nazareth in his mind and seeing what people are doing there and so on. In my understanding, for Fr. Colin, Nazareth is another name for the heart or the soul, in faith one goes to the heart, the inner space where God is and one remains there in stillness and silence. The eye of the soul is opened and one sees reality as God sees it, one can see everything in the light of faith because we are alone before God, we become capable of truly judging what we are doing and turning it in the direction what is essential. From that point we set out again to our work more enlightened than before.
Read more here on marist spirituality.

On s'approche, chaque jour un peu plus, de cette merveilleuse Fête de l'Assomption, que nos frères orthodoxes appellent la Dormition. Marie est absolument unique dans l'histoire de l'humanité et dans le plan divin, les deux étant intimement emboités l'un dans l'autre comme une clé dans sa serrure, parfaitement mélangés comme l'eau de pluie dans la rivière, doucement unis comme deux jeunes amoureux se tenant par la main, formant un tout comme un puzzle finalement complété, comme une tapisserie universelle qui s'étend bien plus loin que notre propre galaxie et dont nous, pauvres humains que nous sommes, nous ne pouvons voir seulement qu'un petit morceau, celui qui est devant nos yeux, et encore, faut-il qu'ils soient ouverts avec attention, respect et recueillement...
Marie, aide-nous à mieux voir, à mieux comprendre, à mieux aimer, Marie prie pour nous !



October 1st 2019:
The Feast of Ste Therese de Lisieux

The summary of her theology has been outlined in many books, first of all, in her own book: "Story of a soul". It is a short book, the unique story of her life, her childhood, her spiritual journey, her drive to enter Carmel as early as she could and her hunger for God in the face of His Son. Her book reads very easily, like an adventure story, and her voice has touched so many people that she is one of the most popular saint of all times, with Saint Francis.
Recently, a friend of mine gave me the book "Conversations with Therese of Lisieux, a mystic for our time" by Jacques Gauthier and I liked it a lot and it got me to re-read "Story of a soul". Inspired by my readings and grateful to Therese for her many practical insights - which have always helped me - I came up with this little meditation.
Because when you think about it, Therese de Lisieux is quite an amazing Saint. Her very short life (she was 24 years old when she died) is a remarkable tribute to what the grace of God can accomplish in us when we truly open our hearts and our arms to Him...
All she wanted was "to love Jesus and help others love him too".
I think that it is very appropriate to ask for her intercession in helping us grow in the virtues of Love, Trust and Surrender, when faced with our current culture of Consumerism, Competition and Control….

Sainte Thérèse, priez pour nous!


A short meditation on the theology of Saint Therese de Lisieux (1873-1897) .
- All flower pictures were taken in the French Alps in early June.
- The Carmelite photo was copied with permission from the web site of the Sisters of Carmel in Colorado.
- The picture of the Therese stained-glass window was taken in Notre-Dame des Victoires Church , which is my parish when in San Francisco here
(when I am in Samoëns in the French Alps, it is la paroisse du Bienheureux Ponce en Haut Giffre here ).

Cross of Christ: Bridge to Paradise

Death trampled Our Lord underfoot, but he in his turn treated death as a highroad for his own feet. He submitted to it, enduring it willingly, because by this means he would be able to destroy death in spite of itself. Death had its own way when Our Lord went out from Jerusalem carrying his cross; but when, by a loud cry from that cross, he summoned the dead from the underworld, death was powerless to prevent it. Death slew him by means of the body which he had assumed, but that same body proved to be the weapon with which he conquered death. Concealed beneath the cloak of his manhood, his godhead engaged death in combat; but in slaying Our Lord, death itself was slain. It was able to kill natural life, but was itself killed by the life that is above the nature of man.
(excerpt from Saint Ephrem sermon)

March 2019:
This is such a powerful sermon: zooming in on the CROSS as the BRIDGE to heaven! Placing one next to the other, the Cross (his death as he was nailed to a wooden cross), as the gate to heaven, as the entrance FOR US ALL into eternal life, as our access to God. Saint Ephraim, one of my favorite Saint, a Doctor of the Church, a poet, (he was quite a prolific hymn writer), a deacon of the early Church, gives this most impressive picture
of the Cross and the Bridge and their link in one sentence.
And it is all very theologically sound.
Very informative and formative (and graphic!) for us, believers.

I decided to use the stained glass of the Holy Family (from the church in Samoens, France) to illustrate this sermon because of the fact that Jesus (portrayed here as a child helping his father in his workshop, in a wonderful and peaceful family scene)
is carrying a cross in wood!
This detail is quite a stretch for the mind about the usual constraint of time and place...
It says Get out of the box! Get out of your comfort zone. If there is something that the faith helps accomplish, again and again, it is to stretch us in our mind, in our heart. it certainly helps us, at least it helps me, get out of my comfort zone! Thank you, saint Ephraim, you helped me today see deeper into the passion of our Lord!

I found the text of the sermon in a message from Fr. Hezekias,
from the Institute of Catholic Culture (which is a place with terrific ressources!) link: here

Because of the recent rain and many storms, we got to see the most beautiful rainbows all over town!

31 janvier: la sainte Marcelle! Bonne Fete Marcelle!

Happy Feast Day, Marcelle!

Saint Marcella of Rome, 4th century, was- and is - a wonderful saint: in a time where Rome was again invaded by pagan culture, corrupted and decadent, she changed it by her own exemplary living, by proving a completely different way of life. She was very wealthy and well educated and became a widow after less than a year of marriage, she dedicated herself to help the poor and the sick around her, giving away all her wealth, she was very pious and Christ-centered, living a life of prayers, charity and service, founder of monastical communities for young virgins and older widows, attracting many by her own exemplary life, a leader among them, a scholar of scripture herself and a close friend of saint Jerome (the one who befriended a lion who cried for a week on his tumb after his death, the one who translated the Bible into what came to be called The Vulgate, after writing it verse by verse, next to each others, in 4 languages: Hebrew, Greeek, Latin and Chaldean). When the barbarians invaded and sacked Rome, they beat Saint Marcelle (although she was an elderly woman in her 80's), and tortured her (trying to find her riches) and left her to die ...But her true wealth was not something they could see because it was her love for Christ and dedication to be faith filled and faithful to Him.

St Marcelle, pray for us,
pray for courage and discernment
for us in our troubled and challenging times!

sources: here (in French)

All photos are mine (Michele Szek)

October 2019 Sharing the faith… in English:

Prayer to the Holy Spirit to illuminate mankind Lord Jesus, you came to destroy the works of the devil and to call us all children of God. You sent us the Advocate so that we may know your truth... Lord Jesus, rain down the Holy Spirit upon all of Mankind. Illuminate and convict each of us of who we are in your eyes.... I love this prayer from the blog: Veronica's Veil here !

The formative value of setting up a Creche I moved my article there on my creche of 2018, the theology behind it and who helped me with it! Go check it out here

Steps 1, 2 and 3...

A Year of Kindness
"Make your resolution to be kind in some way to some person every day... Somehow, show an act of mercy, of charity. The ripple effect from that can spread through the world (and into your eternity)...." Read more here on the Spirit Daily site.

A new perspective...
A very interesting perspectibe, using movies and more, on what should be the impact of Christmas on us, in our daily lives... See it on YouTube here

Pope Francis in Palermo, Sicily. He is paying tribute to a priest who worked to keep youths away from the Mafia and was slain by mobsters. Pope Francis appealed to Mafiosi to renounce their quests for power and money as he visited Sicily on Saturday to honor a priest slain by mob henchmen for trying to protect youths from the evil clutches of organized crime. The daylong trip by Francis to the Mediterranean island where the Cosa Nostra is rooted marked the 25th anniversary of the assassination of the Rev. Giuseppe "Pino" Puglisi's assassination. Puglisi was declared a martyr by the Vatican and beatified in 2013, the last formal step before possible sainthood. Francis paid tribute to the priest, who worked to keep unemployed youths in a poor neighborhood of Palermo from turning to local Mafia bosses for jobs like pushing drugs. Read more here


Tweeting with GOD 'Tweeting with GOD' (#TwGOD) has its origin in Leiden in the Netherlands, where Father Michel Remery engaged in dialogue with young people about their questions concerning the Catholic faith. They asked their questions in person after liturgical celebrations, but also via Twitter, Facebook and other new media. During evening sessions, these young people discussed their questions amongst themselves and with their priest. All questions were welcome and no topic was taboo.
Here is a (small) part of the index of tweets, which can be found here
1.1 Doesn't the Big Bang rule out faith in God?
1.2 But seriously, did all that Adam and Eve business really happen?
1.5 Do science and faith contradict each other?
1.10 Why is the Bible so important?
1.20 How can you know what is literally true in the Bible, and what is not?
1.21 Aren't those incredible Bible stories just fairy tales?
1.28 Why did Jesus have to die such a horrific death?
1.29 Wasn't Jesus really just a good person and a wise guru?
1.32 What does the Holy Spirit do? Do I need him?
1.33 God is one, and at the same time he is three. Isn't that nonsense?
1.34 Did God create evil? What does it have to do with my sins?
1.35 If God is all-powerful, why do disasters happen? Why is there evil?

Finding peace through a call to service in Lourdes. "She felt ostracized and isolated in her college community, where her strong Catholic beliefs and her desire to live and practice her faith were an unwelcome anomaly. A nightly event was venting her frustrations to her family back in Nashville. “I was crying every day on the phone with my mom,” recalled Kerman. ... and her mother suggested going to Lourdes to help in the baths. Read more about it here (found on the diocese of Nashville). It is a very moving story.

How to Respond When You Meet Suffering BY THERESA THOMAS DECEMBER "As I sat looking out the shaded glass windows which overlooked the busy downtown area where I was receiving this treatment, I remember feeling amazed that as I sat, literally fighting for my life, my world falling apart, not only from cancer but being exhausted having just had a new baby right before my diagnosis, the rest of the world seemed not to care one bit. People carried about their normal activities with no perception about my own personal agony."… Read more here

Our Lady of Fatima and a Theological Reading of History by Bishop Robert Barron.
The series of Fatima appearances is one of the most extraordinary in the history of the Church-and it has also beguiled political and cultural commentators outside the ambit of the Church. This particular visitation of Mary took place at the height of the First World War, which signaled the end of Enlightenment confidence in the perfectibility of the human being, and in the year of the Bolshevik Revolution, which would exert, for most of the twentieth-century, a massively deleterious influence Read more here here on Catholic World Report site.

Fr. Dwight on Catholic Liturgy: "Would Jesus Recognize Catholic Worship?"
"When people criticize liturgical worship they assume that Jesus was a simple, wandering preacher-a rustic carpenter from Nazareth. Jesus is the equivalent of Pastor Bob from the Backwoods Bible Church who has studied for two years at Buckboard Bible College and then set up his church. He's a homely country man with a sincere message and a good heart. He goes in for no frills religion" Read more here here on Fr. Longenecker's site.

Black Friday and Good Friday
Every argument is a theological argument, and the vulgarity and futility of Black Friday reveals a philosophical-theological crisis at the heart of our culture. Its called "Materialism". Its easy enough to see the consumerism of Black Friday and say this is materialism but the behaviors are a symptom, not the disease. Read more here here at Patheos.com

"To forgive is the highest, most beautiful form of love".
On the essential need we have (every one of us) for love and reconciliation and, at the same time, on the straightforward commandment of Jesus to love our neighbor, here is a very short but very clear and effectual article: Read it here at Catholic365.com

The Greatest Gift You Could Give
The gift of yourself in contrast with the filling up of ego. "The manifestations of ego have produced the bitter fruit of immorality and the confusion of conscience in our time. All manifestations of pride prevent fulfillment by the Holy Spirit..."
By Michael Brown: read more here: here on the Spirit Daily site.

Black Elk, the Lakota medicine man turned Catholic teacher, is promoted for sainthood By Damian Costello | Jon M. Sweeney "Looks Twice mentioned his hope of sainthood for his grandfather. "I felt a tingling, like this was a divine moment," Mr. Thiel remembers. "Never before had I heard someone speak of Black Elk that way..." Read more on America Magazine on Black Elk, a Catholic teacher and a Lakota leader. here

THE DEDICATION TO MARY IN HONOR OF THE FATIMA ANNIVERSARY : It was a wonderful exceptional day in SF and I put all my photos on this page here

CHANGING THE HUMAN HEART: If you say "pray" it almost feels like that's too passive. We do need to pray, though, for many things, and many people, but mostly for wisdom, because I don't know if anyone has the answer... Read more of what Elizabeth Scalia just wrote on facebook, following the terrible news from Las Vegas: here

"A better approach to LIFE and SUFFERING" or what I learned in this summer of 2017, where a variety of things happened, some obviously good and others not so... and what to do about it. I was walking daily (per doctor's orders) and it did not take a Nobel prize winner to see how beneficient it was for my physical and mental health. I begged for help for the not so good things and wrote here about it. Hope, trust and obedience, patience and fortitude, kindness and generosity... I can see why these are "virtues" to be practiced because the truth is that they don't always come up automatically. But they sure make a big difference... Well, I hope my ponderings make sense to others too here

In May 2017, while in the French Alps, I took this wonderful course on-line on Mary and I enjoyed it so much, it stayed with me for so long afterwards (actually, I am still pondering it) that I created this page on Mary Queen of Heaven and Mary the Queen Mother here .

It started from my notes on the videos and is the result of my own reflexions and my own photos on this subject. The course was called “The Bible and the Virgin Mary” and it was offered by the Saint Paul Center for Biblical Theology and I highly recommend it. I only got their workbook to accompany the videos, I took notes as much as I could and I plan to order Dr. Scott Hahn's book "Hail, Holy Queen" very soon. To go check their site, please go to Saint Paul Center for Biblical Theology. The older I become, the more I appreciate Mary's help in deepening my faith... The photo above is mine, taken last July, it is a detail from the Chapel of the Miraculous Medal, rue du Bac, Paris.

In my French column, I posted a short passage from an article on Andre Frossard's conversion and I love it so much that I will translate it here, I find it very powerful and I can certainly relate to it: "This light, which I did not see with the eyes of my body, was not the type which lights up a room neither was it the one which tans us but it was like a teaching light and as the burning brightness of truth. It definitively reversed the natural order of things. Since I was able to catch a glimpse of it, I can say that for me God alone exists, and the rest is only an assumption"....
Found on the French site of Aleteia.fr here

I wrote recently on the joy of hiking to the Chapel of Sales (in Sixt Fer-A-Cheval) and the joy of relationships, of walking, talking and praying on my wonderful but short trip to Paris and you can see it here

To see my own reflexions on Pentecost and the Holy Spirit and a Trinitarian Prayer , go check it out here

A short commentary of mine on Options, freedom and faith, this most amazing combination of strength and freedom, options and choices, obedience and trust, brought by faith and confidence in the grace of God and in the Church founded by His Son... Read it all here here

The Bible and the Virgin Mary: Mary as You've Never Seen Her! During the month of May, the month of Mary, you can sign up and watch a series of video lessons on the Virgin Mary. Videos and talks created by the Saint Paul Center for Biblical Theology. Illustrated by great paintings and frescoes, they weaved Mary's part in salvation history from Scripture and commentaries, devotions and apparitions. I've only watched the first couple of lessons but I highly recommend them. As it says on their web site: A THEOLOGICAL MASTERPIECE : The Bible and the Virgin Mary is based upon the book Hail, Holy Queen, by Dr. Scott Hahn. It teaches Catholics how Marian doctrine and devotion are firmly rooted in Scripture and answers common objections from non-Catholics. Dr. Hahn, is a popular speaker and teacher, a professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville and the founder and president of the Saint Paul Center for Biblical Theology. Check it out here

Gil Bailie offers his masterwork in God's Gamble: in it, Bailie shares the fruits of a lifetime of patient reflection upon the innovative anthropological hypotheses of Girard and also the fearless theological explorations of Hans Urs von Balthasar…In a spirit of humility, Bailie investigates what we can know about both the origin and the destiny of humankind, thanks to the revelation of the Trinity in history. It is a wondrous history that becomes all the more fascinating as we continue to learn more about it through evolutionary science, cultural anthropology, and theological contemplation. See here

Saint Michael, pray for us! I am weary of the storm around us nowdays, of the anger and fury swirling around, of the mean, vulgar and disparaging comments being hurled... and I'm not sure what to do. I am certain that I should not add oil to the fire, that I should not join in this particular dance, but I do know who to turn to for help! Saint Michael, my patron saint, pray for us today! The icon was in my room at San Damiano, last week-end, the border is my own, just to outline it more for this collage, the prayer and the quote below are from "St Michael and the angels" Tan publisher: St Francis of Sales wrote, three centuries ago, that "Veneration of Saint Michael is the greatest remedy against despising the rights of God, against insubordination, skepticism and infidelity"…

Stunned by Providence… by Michele Szekely. This is a short essay of mine on Divine Providence and how one line from a (very unusual) movie startled me. "But "Les Innocentes" is a little gem too, or so it turned out for me. I must admit I found a certain humor in the fact that my own faith in Divine Providence was deepened in that particular flight! I have known for some times now..." Read it all here .

It is especially during troubled times where confusion is spread daily and panic, fear and anger seem to agitate and dominate so many hearts and minds and souls that we need to hold on fast to the words of Christ, him, the Word of God, the Prince of Peace, the Truth, the Life and the Way. It is certainly a good time to practice charity towards our neighbor, to concentrate on fortitude towards ourselves; to deepen our own trust in God the Creator of the world, grow in love of Jesus Christ, his Son, the Redeemer of the world, exercise openness to the Holy Spirit, the Sanctifyer of the world. O Most Holy Trinity, One God, have mercy on us all!

No Silence for Christ! is my own commentary on Scorsese's last movie, which I have not seen and do not plan to see. I am not sure how useful such a commentary can be so it is better to call it a reflection on the horror of apostasy and the dangers of graphic violence, when all morphed together in a fascinating and attractive (I assume) story... You can read it here and you can send me comments via facebook.

If you have already checked some of the pages on this site, if you know me via facebook or in real life, then you must know I am prolife, pro children, pro family... But I was thinking of all this again today as I was reading an article on the French site of Aleteia. It is using one of the little story I myself used once in an article I wrote on this very subject (back in 2008):
- One I called The 3 stages of life where I described the stage in the womb, the stage in the world and the eternal life in ONE GOD.
- The other one Life continuum uses an ultra sound shot and an icône to illustrate the two stages (the one in the womb and the eternal one) which are a bit more "unknown" to us. I don't remember where I found this "twins in the womb story"but it is such a good one to illustrate the various stages of life.
Re-reading all this today, I thought that to be more precise I should say that: I am pro life, but before it all, I am pro eternal life! It is important to articulate one's world view very clearly and to put all things in the appropriate perspective, right? Well, lucky for us, young children have a way of reminding us of what is truly essential, sometimes in the funniest and even slightly bizarre manner (see photo of children in the snow). They had been working both on the snowman, then suddenly she throws herself on the ground and rolls around in the snow giggling so happily that it brings a smile to my face everytime I think about it... The smile of a child, their energy and innocence, the beauty of the snow and the mountains - or the immensity of the Pacific Ocean - and faith and prayers, all these work as terrific physical and spiritual reboots to me. In today's context (mid November 2016), this is exactly what is needed. I don't think I mentioned it yet but I am in the French Alps, I've been here 2 weeks already, and we are both going back to California in a few days.

For an alphabetical listing of articles and prayers on this site please see : Site Map

Octobre 2019 - Le partage de la foi… en français:

La conversion de Michel Houellebecq au catholicisme, sa plus grande tentation ? "Houellebecq explique dans un entretien avec Agathe-Novak Lechevalier : « Je suis catholique dans le sens où je montre l’horreur d’un monde sans Dieu. »
« Il est vrai que ce monde où nous respirons mal...
N’inspire plus en nous qu’un dégoût manifeste,
Une envie de s’enfuir sans demander son reste,
Et nous ne lisons plus les titres du journal"...

En lire plus ici sur le site d'Aleteia (en français)

La garde du coeur : La technique des Pères du désert pour contrôler ses pensées négatives par Mathilde de Robien | 05 avril 2018
Les pensées ne sont pas intrinsèquement mauvaises, mais certaines le deviennent si elles tendent à l'obsession ou à la passion. Comment les contrôler ? Voici une technique élaborée par les Pères du désert : la garde du cœur, qui se rapproche, par certains aspects, de la méditation contemporaine.
La sobriété, la vigilance, la garde du coeur et de l'imagination, le détachement...
En lire plus ici sur le site de aleteia.fr

Finance : pour combattre l’usure, éduquer à la sobriété. Le pape s’élève contre l’usure qui «humilie et tue» (Traduction intégrale) 3 février 2018, article par Hugues de Warren. «Il est important, a-t-il ajouté, de retrouver les vertus de la pauvreté et du sacrifice : de la pauvreté, pour ne pas devenir esclaves des choses, et du sacrifice, parce que on ne peut pas tout recevoir de la vie.» En lire plus ici sur la version française de Zenit.

La hierarchie des anges: une diaporama sur le site d'aleteia.fr, avec des illustrations. Tres interressant. J'ai aussi un livre de l'editeur TAN en anglais sur "St Michel et les anges" ou il est souvent question d'Augustin, de Thomas d'Aquin, du Pere Faber, St Alphonse Liguori, St Olier, Pape St Gregoire le Grand etc... Voici le lien ici .

10 personnes qui ont donné leur vie pour les autres en 2017 by Jesús Colina
Qui sont les "Mère Teresa de Calcutta" de notre temps ? Qui sont les témoins de la charité et de l'amour inconditionnel envers les autres, en particulier envers les plus nécessiteux ? Reconnaissez vous ces noms: 1) Ignacio Echeverría, le «héros au skateboard» des attentats de Londres; 2) Gaetano Nicosie, «l’ange des lépreux» en Chine; 3) Sudha Varghese, la libératrice des «intouchables» en Inde... plus 7 autres. En lire plus ici

Cinéma et enfants: quel film aller voir et à quel âge?
En cette période de vacances de Noël, où beaucoup de familles se rendent au cinéma, le choix d'un film adapté à l'âge des enfants est loin d'être toujours évident. En lire plus ici

Intro a la vie dévote: Comment il faut fortifier son cœur contre les tentations
Incliné à l'avarice ? " Pensez souvent à la folie de ce péché qui nous rend esclaves de ce qui n'est créé que pour nous servir, qu'a la mort, il faudra tout quitter, et a laisser entre les mains d'un tel qui le dissipera, ou auquel cela servira de ruine ou de damnation ; et semblables pensées. Parlez fort contre l'avarice, louez fort les mépris du monde, violentez-vous à faire des aumônes et des charités, et a laisser écouler quelques occasions d'assembler (d'amasser)….

Essential number 13

26 novembre 2017 Notre Seigneur Jésus Christ Roi de l'Univers - Année A
Solennité du Seigneur. Évangile de Jésus Christ selon saint Matthieu:
En ce temps-là, Jésus disait à ses disciples :
" Quand le Fils de l'homme viendra dans sa gloire,
et tous les anges avec lui,
alors il siégera sur son trône de gloire.
Toutes les nations seront rassemblées devant lui ;
il séparera les hommes les uns des autres,
comme le berger sépare les brebis des boucs :
il placera les brebis à sa droite, et les boucs à gauche.

'Amen, je vous le dis : chaque fois que vous l'avez fait
à l'un de ces plus petits de mes frères,c'est à moi que vous l'avez fait.'

Message (supposé) de Medjugorje a MIRJANA (Message du 2 août 2017):
"Chers enfants, par la volonté du Père Céleste, en tant que mère de Celui qui vous aime, je suis ici avec vous pour vous aider à le connaître et à le suivre. Mon Fils vous a laissé les empreintes de ses pas afin que vous puissiez le suivre plus facilement. N’ayez pas peur, ne soyez pas indécis. Je suis avec vous. Ne vous laissez pas décourager car beaucoup de prières et de sacrifices sont nécessaires pour ceux qui ne prient pas, qui n’aiment pas et qui ne connaissent pas mon Fils. Venez-leur en aide en voyant en eux des frères. Apôtres de mon amour, soyez à l’écoute de ma voix en vous ; ressentez mon amour maternel ; pour cela, priez, priez en agissant, priez en donnant, priez avec amour, priez par les œuvres et par la pensée, au nom de mon Fils. Plus vous donnerez de l’amour, plus vous en recevrez. L’amour qui procède de l’Amour éclaire le monde. La Rédemption est l’amour, or l’amour n’a pas de fin. Quand mon Fils viendra à nouveau sur la terre, il recherchera l’amour dans vos cœurs. Mes enfants, nombreux sont les actes d’amour qu’il a posés pour vous. Je vous enseigne à les voir, à les comprendre et à Lui rendre grâce en l’aimant et en pardonnant toujours à votre prochain, car aimer mon Fils signifie pardonner. On n’aime pas mon Fils si on refuse de pardonner à son prochain, si on refuse d’essayer de le comprendre, si on le juge. Mes enfants, à quoi la prière vous sert-elle si vous n’aimez pas et si vous ne pardonnez pas ? Je vous remercie."

La rédactrice en chef du magazine "Terre Sainte" a écrit une lettre à l'un des deux terroristes responsable de la mort du Père Jacques Hamel, égorgé l'été dernier à la fin de la messe... Je viens juste de découvrir cette lettre, et si je l'avais lue plus tôt, je l'aurais mise sur mon site plus tôt… Mais mieux vaut tard que jamais. J'ai regardé à la télé aujourd'hui (par hasard) une émission (très bien!) sur l'ouverture du tombeau du Christ à Jérusalem, avec une interview de Marie-Armelle Beaulieu (rédactrice de Terre Sainte). Voilà, maintenant vous savez tout… : Et voici sa lettre, du moins le début, et le lien où la trouver :
" Pour moi, je prends la peine de t'écrire parce que j'ai tout de même envie de te remercier. Ah, ça t'en bouche un coin ! Il y a le cadeau au père Hamel. Celui du martyre, le vrai, celui qui donne sa vie par amour, témoigne de sa foi jusqu'à en mourir. Techniquement, il n'y a pas de plus belle mort pour un prêtre que de mourir quand, pour nous et au nom du Christ, il donne sa vie pour le salut du monde. Tu as fait un saint de plus. Celui-là, il est entré direct au ciel et est dans la vision béatifique pour l'éternité. C'est probablement ce que 58 ans de sacerdoce lui avait déjà mérité. Et s'il n'avait pas été parfait, tu as parachevé pour lui le chemin vers la sainteté. Merci...."
Lire le texte en entier de cette lettre sur Temps et Contretemps: ici
Et voici le lien avec le site de Terre Sainte où il parle du tombeau de Jésus: ici

Les plus belles pages sur Marie: par le Cardinal de Bérulle (1575-1629)
Que Dieu fait naître en la terre une Vierge, laquelle il rend digne et capable de recevoir et porter le Fils de Dieu au monde. Pour rendre la terre digne de porter et recevoir son Dieu, Dieu fait naître en la terre une personne rare et éminente qui n'a point de part au péché du monde, et est douée de tant d'ornements et privilèges, que le monde n'a jamais vu et ne verra jamais, ni en la terre, ni au ciel, une personne semblable. Elle est conçue sans péché, elle est sanctifiée dès le premier moment de son être. Elle est douée dès lors de l'usage de raison et de grâce, elle est confirmée en état d'innocence et impuissance à offenser...
En lire plus ici

Né entre 480 et 490, à Nursie dans les Apennins, en Ombrie. La vie de St Benoit : Introduction, par Saint Grégoire : "tout quitter pour le Christ" : Il y eut un homme de sainte vie, Benoît - BENEDICTUS - béni par la grâce et par le nom…
Son best-seller : Sa Règle. C'est au Concile de Latran en 1215 que cette règle devient la norme exclusive de la vie monastique en Occident. Ses Titres : Nommé " Patron de l'Europe " par Paul VI, en 1964. Il fut " un messager de Paix ", " un Maître de culture ", " un Hérault de la foi chrétienne ", et " le fondateur de la vie monastique en Occident ".
Ses miracles : Lire le livre II des dialogues de St Grégoire le Grand. Objet qui le caractérise : un livre. Les moines bénédictins ont recopié les codex latins afin de pouvoir les conserver et les transmettre.
Sa parole de Vie : " Ne rien préférer à l'amour du Christ ". En lire plus sur le site de l'Abbaye de Jouarre ici

ASIE/SYRIE - Document du Jesuit Refugee Service six ans après le début du conflit en Syrie. Homs (Agence Fides) - Aujourd'hui, 15 mars, marque le sixième anniversaire du début du conflit syrien et, contrairement à ce que semblent indiquer les impressions superficielles sollicitées par certaines nouvelles fortement emphatisées par les circuits médiatiques internationaux, la Syrie " continue à souffrir " on estime que 13,5 millions de syriens ont besoin d'assistance humanitaire, sachant que la moitié de ce nombre est composé d'enfants. Les enfants ont perdu leur enfance. Près de 3 millions d'enfants syriens de moins de 5 ans ont grandi sans connaître d'autre réalité que celle de la guerre… En lire plus sur le site de Agenzia Fides ici

10 femmes devenues saintes par leur statut de mère:
Être mère, c'est à la fois une immense bénédiction et une lourde responsabilité, et cela aide parfois de savoir que de nombreuses femmes sont déjà passées par là. Ces femmes ne sont pas que des bons exemples à suivre, elles sont des saintes qui peuvent intercéder pour vous et vous apporter du soutien.
Sainte Françoise de Rome, dont on célèbre la fête le 9 mars: Sainte Françoise eut six enfants, mais son fils Baptiste fut le seul à ne pas mourir dans l'enfance. Adulte, il épousa une femme qui détestait Françoise. Alors qu'elle était régulièrement insultée, rabaissée et coupée de la vie de son fils, Françoise décida de ne pas baisser les bras et de continuer à se montrer aimable envers sa belle-fille. Celle-ci finit par changer de comportement et cela permit de retrouver l'harmonie familiale. Parfois, seule une mère est assez forte pour se mettre en retrait avec humilité et amour dans le but de recoller les morceaux dans une famille déchirée. Son conseil : soyez une source d'unité dans votre famille, et non de division. En lire plus ici sur le site de aleteia.fr

Priez pour le monde avec le Pape ! Rentrez dans le Réseau mondial de prière du Pape, avec le site Prier au coeur du monde ici et l'appli "Click To Pray" qui relaient son appel à tous les chrétiens à se mobiliser pour les défis de l’humanité et la mission de l’Église.

Journée du patrimoine chrétien oriental à Paris samedi 21 janvier, les neuf églises catholiques orientales de Paris ouvrent leurs portes au public pour une « journée du patrimoine chrétien oriental ». Trois parcours-pèlerinage sont proposés à travers les rues de Paris à la rencontre des chrétiens d’Orient :
- Saint-Ephrem (des syriens-catholiques) - Notre-Dame-du-Liban (des maronites) - Saint-Julien-le-Pauvre (des melkites) ;
- Notre-Dame d’Égypte (des coptes catholiques) - Notre-Dame-de-Chaldée (des chaldéens) - Sainte-Croix-des-Arméniens
- ou enfin Saint-Volodymyr (des Ukrainiens) - Saint-Georges-des-Roumains - Très-Sainte-Trinité (Russes catholiques).
Ces visites leur permettent de découvrir que l’on peut être catholique sans être latin, orientaux sans être orthodoxes, et donc que l’Église catholique n’est pas monolithique. »...
En lire plus ici sur le site de La Croix

L'icône de la Théophanie, église orthodoxe d'Estonie: L'icône de l'Epiphanie représente symboliquement le baptême du Christ au Jourdain, et illustre également certains textes scripturaires concernant le rôle de l'eau comme instrument et de la création du monde, et du salut de l'humanité. En la personne de Jésus-Christ, qui n'a pas connu le péché, le baptême n'est évidemment pas octroyé, comme dans notre cas " pour la repentance ", " en vue de la rémission des péchés" (Actes 2/38). Traversant la croûte terrestre, le Christ pénètre dans un "tombeau liquide", ce trou noir, lieu du "schéol" ou séjour des morts. Son baptême est essentiellement un passage dans la mort et la résurrection, comme le sera, à sa suite, notre propre baptême, ainsi que l'explique saint Paul : "Nous avons donc été ensevelis avec lui dans la mort par le baptême, afin que, comme Christ est ressuscité d'entre les morts par la gloire du Père, de même nous aussi nous marchions en nouveauté de vie " (Rom. 6/4). De plus, l'entrée du Christ dans le Jourdain a déclenché une véritable Pentecôte personnelle, la première manifestation du Dieu trinitaire. "Dans ton baptême au Jourdain, Seigneur, s'est manifestée l'adoration de la Trinité... " En lire plus ici .

Marie, Miroir des Vierges. Quoi de plus noble que la mère de Dieu ? Quoi de plus splendide que celle-là même qu'a choisie la splendeur ? Quoi de plus chaste que celle qui a engendré le corps sans souillure corporelle ? Et que dire de ses autres vertus ? Elle était vierge, non seulement de corps, mais d'esprit, elle dont jamais les ruses du péché n'ont altéré la pureté : humble de cœur, réfléchie dans ses propos, prudente, avare de paroles, avide de lecture ; elle mettait son espoir non dans l'incertitude de ses richesses, mais dans la prière des pauvres ; appliquée à l'ouvrage, réservée, elle prenait pour juge de son âme non l'homme, mais Dieu ; ne blessant jamais, bienveillante à tous, pleine de respect pour les vieillards, sans jalousie pour ceux de son âge, elle fuyait la jactance, suivait la raison, aimait la vertu. Quand donc offensa-t-elle ses parents, ne fût-ce que dans son attitude ? Quand la vit-on en désaccord avec ses proches ? Quand repoussa-t-elle l'humble avec dédain, se moqua-t-elle du faible, évita-t-elle le miséreux ? ... son attitude extérieure était l'image même de son âme, le reflet de sa droiture ... Bien que Mère du Seigneur, elle aspirait pourtant à apprendre les préceptes du Seigneur ; elle qui avait enfanté Dieu, souhaitait pourtant de connaître Dieu. (Extrait du De Virginibus, dédié en 377 par saint Ambroise à sa sœur Marcelline, religieuse à Rome) en lire plus ici sur le site des plus belles pages sur Marie


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