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Articles in this newsletter:
Jesus, Mary, Joseph!
St. Alphonsus Liguori on the Religious Vocation
Photo Gallery (separate web page)
Just for Smiles
Calendar

Our Apostolate of Prayer
Send intentions for Sisters’ Novenas

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  St. Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church

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Spring 2015

Dear Friends,

Praised be Jesus and Mary!

Looking over the quarter into which we are entering, we see that the devotions proper to each month bring before us once more the Holy Family. We begin with the month of St. Joseph, then that of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, and lastly, the month dedicated to Our Blessed Mother Mary. Then, too, it is hardly possible to lose sight of the sufferings of Christ during this Lenten season. Any of these topics will provide abundant food for meditative thought and at the same time, they are only facets of the one mystery of our redemption. We can only take here a small sip of nectar from each of these precious flowers to whet the appetite of our souls, that through continued meditation we may grow daily in our union with Jesus, Mary and Joseph.

We can always turn confidently to the head of the Holy Family, St. Joseph. His quiet strength and humble competence hide the amazing growth of the gifts of the Holy Ghost in his docile soul. Joseph knew the responsibilities and cares, the uncertainties and decisions, the toils and exhaustion of our human condition. We get the sense that his feet were firmly planted on this earth, though he lived in company with the God of heaven, and we know instinctively that we can count on him for help in any difficulty, since Mary and Jesus trusted themselves to His Providence.

“O Sacred Banquet in which Christ is received, the memory of His Passion is renewed, the mind is filled with grace and a pledge of future glory is given to us.”

Thus prays the priest during the ceremony of Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. The sufferings of Christ and His glory are inseparably linked in this most Holy Sacrament of His Body and Blood. Jesus gave us Himself in the Blessed Sacrament as His Last Will and Testament the night before He died. Sublime mystery! In the one action, as it were, He accepts death for our Redemption while bestowing on us His glorious living Body to sustain us in our own sufferings, and remind us of the joy and union of the final resurrection.

Young ladies join the Sisters for prayers during Vocations Weekend Vocations Weekend 2015: This year twenty young ladies came to the convent for a weekend to learn more about the vocation to the Sisterhood.

  

Having already given us Himself, how could He not share with us His Mother as well? Born to her in her sorrows we were, but she is our springtime: our life, our sweetness and our hope. We are hers and she is ours! Though, as St. Louis Marie de Montfort tells us, she begged God to keep her hidden during her earthly life, still, we look on her with awe, knowing that within the maiden’s body there dwells a soul immaculate. And externally, nothing seems to change, though she becomes the Mother of the Incarnate God! How fitting that we celebrate the feast of the Annuciation and Incarnation during the month of St. Joseph, who protected those most holy mysteries by his quiet presence in the life of Mary. God removed that greatest of patriarchs from the sweet presence of these beloved charges, perhaps that he might not suffer more in witnessing their pains, or perhaps that he might not shield them from the sufferings they both must bear.

Mary Immaculate, Blessed Virgin and Holy Mother, Queen of Martyrs and of Angels! Our own sweet mother, Mary! Gloriously crowned in heaven, she still tenderly bends to hear the cries of her children in their exile, to accept the flowers and candles with which they honor her, singing her praises and presenting their petitions in her month of May.

Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I give you my heart and my soul…may I breathe forth my soul in peace with you!

On the Religious Vocation

by St. Alphonsus Liguori

The Sisters praying during the 40 Hours Devotion

Our Apostolate of Prayer

Are 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)
Queenship BVM
   (Feast: June 1)
 

How singular a thing it is, when there is question of entering religious life, to lead a life more perfect and more free from the dangers of the world, that men of the world say that it is necessary to deliberate a long time before putting such resolutions in execution, in order to ascertain whether the vocation comes from God or from the devil.…

The saints, however, do not talk thus. St. Thomas says that even if the vocation to religious life should come from the devil, we should nevertheless follow it as a good counsel, though coming from an enemy. St. John Chrysostom, as quoted by the same St. Thomas, says that God, when He gives such vocations, wills that we should not defer even a moment to follow them. Christ requires from us such an obedience that we should not delay an instant… [It is not necessary to deliberate for a long time.]

Let us also hear what St. Francis de Sales writes on religious vocation, because it will confirm what has already been said:

“To have a sign of a true vocation, it is not necessary that our constancy be sensible; it suffices if it be in the superior part of our soul. And therefore we must not judge that a vocation is not a true one, if the individual thus called, before putting it in execution, does not feel any longer those sensible movements which he felt in the beginning. [A sensible attraction to religious life is not necessary.] Even should he feel a repugnance Vocation: Is Jesus knocking at the door of your heart? and coldness, which sometimes bring him to waver, and make it appear to him that all is lost. It is enough that the will remains constant in not abandoning the divine call, and also that there remains some affection for this call.

“To know whether God will have one become a religious, one ought not to expect that God Himself should speak or send to one an angel from heaven to signify His will. Nor is it necessary that ten or twelve experts should examine whether the vocation is to be followed or not. But it is necessary to correspond with the first movement of the inspiration, and to cultivate it, and then not to grow weary if disgust or coldness should come on; for if one acts thus, God will not fail to make all succeed in His glory.

“Nor ought we to care much from what source the first movement comes. The Lord has many means to call His servants. Sometimes He makes use of a sermon, at other times of the reading of good books. Some, as St. Anthony and St. Francis, were called by hearing the words of the Gospel; others by means of afflictions and troubles that came upon them in the world, and which suggested to them the motive for leaving it. These persons, although they come to God only because they are disgusted with the world or out of favor with it, nevertheless, failing not to give themselves to Him with their whole will, become sometimes greater saints than those who entered religion with a more apparent vocation…”

Just for Smiles

One day a repairman came to the convent to do some work in the refectory. It happened to be a Friday in Lent, which the Sisters observe as a strict ”silence day“ within the cloister. Busily working with his back to the room, the man didn’t notice that Sisters were coming in one by one for lunch. His task accomplished, he was stunned when he turned around and found the room filled with nuns. A Sister heard him talking on his cell phone as he walked away, “I couldn’t believe it! The room was full of women and not one was saying a word!“

Calendar

March 4
6-8
9
19
  Sr. Maria Kazimiera’s feastday
Vocations Weekend
Mother Mary Dominica’s feastday
Feast of St. Joseph; Sr. Mary Josephine’s feastday
April 5
6
20

26
28
  Easter Sunday
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
May 12
14
20
25
30
  Sr. Mary Imelda’s feastday
Sr. Mary Gemma’s feastday
Sr. Bernardine Marie’s feastday
Sr. Madeleine Marie’s feastday
Sr. Marie Janae’s feastday
June 1



12

13
23-26
27
29
30
  Feast of Queenship BVM (and St. Angela);
renewal of Total Consecration to Mary
Sr. Maria Regina’s feastday;
Sr. Maria 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.
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