|Our outdoor statue of St. Joseph in early spring several years ago, before the weather took its toll and its paint began peeling badly. The new design for the shrine includes a roofed structure to protect the statue from the elements.|
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Since we have recently been trying to come up with a special way to show our gratitude to St. Joseph for all that he has done for us, we couldn’t help but think that our newsletter was a perfect opportunity to promote devotion to this great Saint, and to share with you our plans to thank and honor him.
In 1870, Pope Pius IX declared St. Joseph the Patron of the Universal Church. Just as all of the favors bestowed on the Blessed Virgin were in preparation for or in relation to her dignity as Mother of God, so St. Joseph’s holiness springs from his place in the Holy Family, as foster father of Christ and spouse of the Blessed Virgin. Being nearest to the source of all grace and the channel through which it flows to us, it stands to reason that he would have the most benefit from that proximity.
St. Teresa of Avila maintains that as certain saints are patrons to help us in special needs, St. Joseph helps in all our needs.
The annals of the Little Sisters of the Poor contain numerous accounts of the Sisters’ trust in St. Joseph in all their necessities, and the wonderful and sometimes humorous means by which he repaid their trust and provided for their necessities. On one occasion the Sisters were out walking in very inclement weather when they met a man who asked them why they were out in the storm. They replied that they had no more bread in the house for the elderly in their care and were trying to find some. The man told them, “You can go home now. I own a bakery and my staff made too much bread this morning. On account of the storm we haven’t been able to sell it; I will send it over.”
On the feast of St. Joseph last year, we went on procession to visit each of the several shrines dedicated to him around the Mount.
Sister Louise Marie receives ashes on Ash Wednesday, the first day of the penitential season of Lent.
As I read over the numerous stories to choose this incident, it made me remember how many similar stories of our own we could tell of the care St. Joseph has taken of our Sisters though the years. Our Congregation has always relied heavily on St. Joseph as our insurance broker and financier, and he has done a marvelous job. The gargantuan task of restoring and maintaining our century-old building continues to move along under his constant vigilance. For this reason, the Sisters and staff at St. Michael’s have undertaken to renovate the outdoor shrine to St. Joseph as a thank offering for his paternal protection and unceasing favors.
We have a beautiful design — a composite of ideas from several parishioners and Sisters. The plan is to break ground and finish between his feastdays of March 19 and May 1. Already we have received donations of money and materials, as well as volunteers signing up to assist with the labor. We are sure that there are many who have been beneficiaries of this great saint, and who would love to be able to help us honor and thank our good father, St. Joseph, fittingly, whether by joining in our prayers, or by contributing towards this project. And just in case you didn’t know, in our monthly Mass offered in his honor and asking his continued aid and protection, we also ask him to intercede for you, our dear benefactors.
Our Apostolate of PrayerAre you worried about a loved one? Is there a problem that is weighing heavily upon your heart? Send in your intentions, and the Sisters will commend them in their prayers and Masses, especially during our upcoming Novenas:
Our Lady of Good Counsel
(Feast: April 26)
(Feast: May 31)
Vocation, or the call to consecrate oneself to God, is a privilege: a privilege which does not depend on personal merit, but on God’s good pleasure alone. God chooses whom He wills, when He wills, and as He wills. “All men take not this word,” said Jesus, speaking of perfect chastity, “but only they to whom it is given” (Matt. 19:11). This prerogative has been given only because it pleased God and He so willed. “You have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you” (John 15:16).
God’s choice is the basis of every vocation; it is wholly gratuitous, inspired solely by His love. Each one so chosen should justly consider himself as a privileged one of God, privleged without any merit on his own part, privileged only because the Most High has so decreed in the unfathomable designs of His will. Each one so chosen can and should feel that God might have selected others far more deserving, more virtuous, more gifted; and confronted with the mystery of God’s choice and his own insufficiency, he should be unable to do otherwise than prostrate himself in gratitude and humility. Together with Mary, the most privileged of all creatures, every consecrated soul can sing its Magnificat: “My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Savior, because He hath regarded the humility of His handmaid” (Luke 1:46-48).
The story of every vocation can be summarized by saying that God’s glance has rested with special love on one of His creatures. That this creature is poor, weak and wretched does not matter. God knows what it is made of. He sees its poverty and draws it to Himself: “I have loved thee with an everlasting love; therefore have I drawn thee, taking pity on thee” (Jeremias 31:3). God’s choice is absolutely free and cannot be determined either by the merits or by the characteristics of His creatures, nor does He seek them; rather His choice often falls on the weakest, on those whom the world despised. God only seeks hearts capable of corresponding to His love of predeliction, hearts capable of giving themselves to Him without reserve and with complete generosity. —Divine Intimacy, Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, OCD, p. 219
|Sr. Maria Kazimiera’s feastday
Mother Mary Dominica’s feastday
Feast of St. Joseph; Sr. Mary Josephine’s feastday
Sr. Mary Julianna’s feastday
Feast of Mother of Good Counsel
Feast of St. Louis Marie de Montfort, Spiritual Father of the Congregation of Mary Immaculate Queen (CMRI);
Sr. Louise Marie’s feastday;
begin preparation for Renewal of Total Consecration to Mary
|Sr. Mary Imelda’s feastday
100th Anniversary of the Apparition of Our Lady at Fatima
Sr. Bernardine Marie’s feastday
Sr. Madeleine Marie’s feastday
Sr. Marie Janae’s feastday
Feast of the Queenship BVM (Titular feast of our Congregation)
Sr. Maria Regina’s feastday;
Renewal of Total Consecration to Mary
Sr. Mary Angela’s feastday
Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
Sr. Corinne Marie’s feastday;
Sr. Mary Antoinette’s feastday
Sisters’ Annual Retreat
Feast of Our Mother of Perpetual Help
Sisters’ Vows Ceremonies
Sr. Mary Petra’s feastday
Sr. Mary Paula’s feastday
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Anima Mariae is the free quarterly newsletter of the CMRI Sisters.
St. Michael’s Convent