When God the Creator made all things, he commanded the plants to bring forth fruit each according to its own kind; he has likewise commanded Christians, who are the living plants of his Church, to bring forth the fruits of devotion, each one in accord with his character, his station and his calling.
I say that devotion must be practiced in different ways by the nobleman and by the working man, by the servant and by the prince, by the widow, by the unmarried girl and by the married woman. But even this distinction is not sufficient; for the practice of devotion must be adapted to the strength, to the occupation and to the duties of each one in particular.
Tell me, please, my Philothea, whether it is proper for a bishop to want to lead a solitary life like a Carthusian; or for married people to be no more concerned than a Capuchin about increasing their income; or for a working man to spend his whole day in church like a religious; or on the other hand for a religious to be constantly exposed like a bishop to all the events and circumstances that bear on the needs of our neighbor. Is not this sort of devotion ridiculous, unorganized and intolerable? Yet this absurd error occurs very frequently, but in no way does true devotion, my Philothea, destroy anything at all. On the contrary, it perfects and fulfills all things. In fact if it ever works against, or is inimical to, anyone’s legitimate station and calling, then it is very definitely false devotion.
The bee collects honey from flowers in such a way as to do the least damage or destruction to them, and he leaves them whole, undamaged and fresh, just as he found them. True devotion does still better. Not only does it not injure any sort of calling or occupation, it even embellishes and enhances it.
Moreover, just as every sort of gem, cast in honey, becomes brighter and more sparkling, each according to its color, so each person becomes more acceptable and fitting in his own vocation when he sets his vocation in the context of devotion. Through devotion your family cares become more peaceful, mutual love between husband and wife becomes more sincere, the service we owe to the prince becomes more faithful, and our work, no matter what it is, becomes more pleasant and agreeable.
It is therefore an error and even a heresy to wish to exclude the exercise of devotion from military divisions, from the artisans’ shops, from the courts of princes, from family households. I acknowledge, my dear Philothea, that the type of devotion which is purely contemplative, monastic and religious can certainly not be exercised in these sorts of stations and occupations, but besides this threefold type of devotion, there are many others fit for perfecting those who live in a secular state.
Therefore, in whatever situations we happen to be, we can and we must aspire to the life of perfection. – Introduction to the Devout Life
A dear friend of the Community, Fr. Lawrence Robotnik, passed away on February 28th. Fr. Robotnik came to Old St. Mary’s to celebrate the weekly German Mass. Father was an example of priestly charity and faithfulness, and will be sorely missed by the Community and Old St. Mary’s Parish.
Requiem Aeternam dona eis, Domine et lux perpetua luceat eis: Requiescant in pace. Amen.
Ewige Ruhe schenke ihm, o Herr! Und das ewige Licht leuchte ihm! Lasse ihn ruhen in Frieden. Amen.
Join the Community for a Sung Traditional Latin Mass tomorrow, January 6th, for the Epiphany of the Lord. Mass will begin at 7pm. Following Mass, the annual blessing of chalk will occur. Everyone is also invited to bring any gold, incense, or myrrh which will be blessed following Mass. Epiphany Water was blessed earlier today and will be available following Mass.
Watch Old St. Mary’s bulletin for information on how to set an appointment to have your house blessed in the new year. Or read here
The Community-in-Formation wishes everyone a very Merry and Blessed Christmas! Please know that all of our family, friends, and benefactors will be remembered in our Masses tomorrow.
As we celebrate the birth of our salvation, may we all find consolation in the fact that God so loved the world that He sent His only Son, in order that we might have life, and have it more abundantly. May we reflect upon the meaning of this Feast Day by reading the great Christmas Day Sermon of St. Leo the Great.
“Our Savior, dearly-beloved, was born today: let us be glad. For there is no proper place for sadness, when we keep the birthday of the Life, which destroys the fear of mortality and brings to us the joy of promised eternity. No one is kept from sharing in this happiness. There is for all one common measure of joy, because as our Lord the destroyer of sinand death finds none free from charge, so is He come to free us all. Let the saint exult in that he draws near to victory. Let the sinner be glad in that he is invited to pardon. Let the gentile take courage in that he is called to life. For the Son of God in the fullness of time which the inscrutable depth of the Divine counsel has determined, has taken on him thenature of man, thereby to reconcile it to its Author: in order that the inventor of death, the devil, might be conquered through that (nature) which he had conquered. And in this conflict undertaken for us, the fight was fought on great and wondrous principles of fairness; for the Almighty Lord enters the lists with His savage foe not in His own majesty but in our humility, opposing him with the same form and the same nature, which shares indeed our mortality, though He is free from all sin.” – St. Leo the Great, Christmas Day Sermon
To watch a live stream of the Rorate Mass, please see below or visit our YouTube Channel. Mass begins at 6:45am on Saturday Morning (12/14). The live stream will be archived following the Mass…
Join the Community-in-Formation for a Solemn Traditional Mass for Bl. John Henry Newman, CO. Bl. John Newman brought the person of St. Philip and the idea of the Oratory to England, where it has had much success in reclaiming England to the Faith. Join us as we celebrate this Blessed of the Congregation, and invoke his intercession for similar blessing upon the Cincinnati Community, and all Oratorian Communities in the United States.
When: October 9th at 7pm
Where: Old St. Mary’s Church
123 E. 13th St.
Over-the-Rhine – Cincinnati, Ohio 45202
Who: Fr. Lawrence Juarez, Celebrant
Fr. Jon-Paul Bevak, Deacon
Br. Adrian Hilton, Subdeacon
Check out the latest article from our friend Gail over the Catholic Beat… Please share with family and friends to get the message out. Also, please note the new time for Vespers starting this Sunday, 3pm… No Vespers next Sunday, October 13, because of the closing of 40 Hours.