Why this popular picture sums up Christmas

The Our Lady of Perpetual Help icon is not often considered for this season, but it should be. After years of not paying much attention to it; the Our Lady of Perpetual Help icon has become my favorite Christmas image this Advent. The image is a 13th-century Byzantine icon currently housed in Rome’s Church of St. Alphonsus. It… Continue reading Why this popular picture sums up Christmas

In Colombia lies the largest crucifix in the world

A 262-foot-long statue of Christ on the cross rests atop a chapel at a religious theme park. Until recently, we were under the impression that the largest crucifix in the world was a 28-foot-tall statue of Jesus in Indian River, Michigan. The towering “Cross in the Woods,” the work of American sculptor Marshall Fredericks, was built in… Continue reading In Colombia lies the largest crucifix in the world

The staircase Saint Joseph built in New Mexico

The Chapel of Loretto in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is home to an exceptional work of carpentry The staircase of Loretto Chapel in Santa Fe, New Mexico is well known for being surrounded by three mysteries: the identity of its builder and the physics of its structure. No one is able to fully understand how… Continue reading The staircase Saint Joseph built in New Mexico

Why is St. Joseph depicted as an old man in christian art?

José de Ribera (January 12, 1591 ? September 2, 1652) ("Lo Spagnoletto") San José y el Niño Jesús / St Joseph and the Infant Jesus 1632 Oil on canvas 126 x 100cm Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid

The main sources of our familiar artistic depictions of St. Joseph are, interestingly, not canonical. The Patron of the Universal Church, Saint Joseph, is rarely mentioned in the Gospels. The gospels of John and Mark do not mention him at all, and Luke only refers to St. Joseph twice –once in Jesus’ “genealogy”, to establish… Continue reading Why is St. Joseph depicted as an old man in christian art?

Polish statue of Christ found peeking out of a growing tree

This unintentional work of art stands as a symbol of Christ’s unfailing presence in the world.   This statue of Jesus was discovered in an abandoned cemetery in the Polish town of Łupków. According to a report from The First News, Łupków is a ruined town that was largely abandoned after World War II. All that remains of… Continue reading Polish statue of Christ found peeking out of a growing tree

THE YEAR OF ST. JOSEPH PRAYER

The official prayer of the Year of St. Joseph—To you, O blessed Joseph (Ad te, beate Ioseph)—was composed by Pope Leo XIII in his 1889 encyclical, Quamquam Pluries. The Holy Father asked that it be added to the end of the Rosary especially during October, the month of the Holy Rosary. This prayer is enriched with… Continue reading THE YEAR OF ST. JOSEPH PRAYER

The churches around the world named for St. Joseph

Parishes have often invoked the patronage of the Patron of the Universal Church.   In this 150th anniversary year of Blessed Pope Pius IX’s declaration of St. Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church, Pope Francis has proclaimed a special “Year of St Joseph.” In St. Joseph’s hometown What would Nazareth be without a church… Continue reading The churches around the world named for St. Joseph

Traces of miracles remain at the birthplace of St. Rita of Cascia

Pilgrims visiting the Umbrian hill town can follow the spiritual journey of Saint of the Impossible.   Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful. John: 14:27 In Umbria’s Valnerina… Continue reading Traces of miracles remain at the birthplace of St. Rita of Cascia

5 Saints who loved the game of chess

These holy men and women were fans of the game centuries ago.   Chess is enjoying a huge surge in popularity thanks to recent shows like Netflix’s The Queen’s Gambit, which has garnered millions of viewers. And while the game may require the patience of a saint, only a handful of the Church’s holy men… Continue reading 5 Saints who loved the game of chess

An abandoned dog finds comfort with Baby Jesus… photos go viral

In the creche of a public Nativity scene, a puppy finds comfort and rest … and a new family.   A touching episode that took place in Criciúma, Brazil, in 2008 has gone viral again! An unusual “living statue” joined a Nativity scene set up in one of the southern Brazilian city’s squares: in the… Continue reading An abandoned dog finds comfort with Baby Jesus… photos go viral

5 Practical ways to imitate Our Lady’s spiritual motherhood

These acts of fruitfulness offer all women a model to follow. Ever since Jesus entrusted his beloved disciple to Our Lady, telling him to see her as his own mother (Jn 19:27), Christ’s followers have recognized Mary as a mother to us all. Her loving care for all Christians is the model par excellence of the spiritual motherhood… Continue reading 5 Practical ways to imitate Our Lady’s spiritual motherhood

Try Mother Teresa’s 5-second prayer to Mary for when you need support

Have this prayer at hand throughout your day.   Two of the Church’s most powerful female intercessors have to be St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta and the Virgin Mary. Throughout Mother Teresa’s long life on earth, which was fully devoted to helping others, there were still times she needed a little divine help. The person that… Continue reading Try Mother Teresa’s 5-second prayer to Mary for when you need support

5-year-old walks 10 km with prostheses and raises $1 million

This extraordinary little boy’s courage and commitment is drawing international acclaim.   As the year draws to a close, it’s good to look back on moments of triumph and hope that have taken place during this difficult time. The story I’m about to tell has its moments of suffering and sorrow, so I’m going to think… Continue reading 5-year-old walks 10 km with prostheses and raises $1 million

8 Powerful quotes on the importance of growing close to the Virgin Mary

With Mary as the perfect role model, here are some quotes that reflect the beauty of a relationship with her. Today we celebrate the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary. It comes exactly nine months before Mary’s nativity on September 8. In many countries around the world it is recognized as a day of… Continue reading 8 Powerful quotes on the importance of growing close to the Virgin Mary

7 Inspirational quotes about the joy of Advent from recent popes

Here’s a reminder on how Advent can fill you with joy and hope in what is to come.   2020 has been a struggle for so many. Advent couldn’t come fast enough. The season that brings so much hope and expectation seems a perfect way to end this tumultuous year. To help the faithful appreciate the beauty… Continue reading 7 Inspirational quotes about the joy of Advent from recent popes

10 Reasons Popes Francis and Benedict love the Christmas crib

This tradition is anything but mere decoration.   Pope Francis loves the Christmas Nativity scenes so much that last year he wrote a whole letter on this tradition, which traces back to his namesake, St. Francis. Pope Benedict XVI as well often pointed out the value of this beautiful tradition.   As you’re standing before your own family… Continue reading 10 Reasons Popes Francis and Benedict love the Christmas crib

British archaeologist confident he has found Jesus’ childhood home

House has all the markings of a skilled craftsman, such as St. Joseph.   Five years of intensive research on archaeological data has consolidated evidence that a 1st-century house in Nazareth belonged to the Holy Family, a British researcher has concluded.   The house, which was discovered decades ago beneath a convent, was first excavated… Continue reading British archaeologist confident he has found Jesus’ childhood home

12 Magical Advent and Christmas picture books perfect for reading aloud

Bring the littlest members of the family into the holiday spirit with these timeless stories!   We’re quickly approaching the most read-aloud time of the year in the weeks leading up to Christmas. If you’re a parent, grandparent, teacher, or just someone who loves a child, you’ll want to stock up on these beloved classic picture books.  … Continue reading 12 Magical Advent and Christmas picture books perfect for reading aloud

Is the Big Bang Church Teaching?

Here’s an interesting question: Is the big bang Church teaching?   The universe is about 13.82 billion years old. Although it is well within the error range of earlier estimates, this new number means that the universe is slightly older than cosmologists previously thought. The new age comes as a result of data just released from… Continue reading Is the Big Bang Church Teaching?

What Carlo Acutis’ nanny taught him—and us

Blessed Carlo learned about Jesus from an unlikely source, and her example gives important lessons to anyone who cares for children.   “Beata was one of the first people to speak to Carlo about God,” says Antonia, mother of Blessed Carlo Acutis. When Carlo was born, his mother had only set foot in a church… Continue reading What Carlo Acutis’ nanny taught him—and us