NOTICE: I am a practicing Catholic, active and in good-standing with my local parish, who professes faith and loyalty to the Church. This ministry - my "little work" - is strictly a personal expression of that faith and loyalty, and not an officially recognized ministry in the Diocese of Honolulu. ~ Peter

Saturday, November 2, 2013

First Saturday Parish Rosary at St. Anthony of Padua Church, 11/2/2013

The "Table of Remembrance" at the main altar of St. Anthony of Padua Church.
Dozens of photos of our departed parishioners cover the table to be remembered in our prayers.
I absolutely love the Church.  Among the many reasons why is because I think it's awesome that we have a special day - the Feast of All Souls - set aside to commemorate ALL our deceased brethren, especially those who are still in the process of purification.  Whether you believe in the concept of an afterlife purgation, or not, it's just a beautiful and comforting tradition... and I look forward to it every year, along with the Feast of All Saints that precedes it.
It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead,
that they may be loosed from sins.”
~ 2 Maccabees, 12:46
So today the Church throughout the world is not just remembering our deceased... but it's also united as one in praying for the peaceful repose of its dearly departed (very, very powerful!) . In observance of the feast, and in solidarity with other Catholics, our parish's First Saturday Rosary for Peace was offered for the blessed souls in Purgatory.  It was very meaningful and moving...
Parishioners and visitors to our Kailua church, awaiting the start
of the Holy Rosary in our Day Chapel.
Before we started the Rosary, I shared about the life of Bl. Marie of Providence (d. 1871) - a French founder of a religious institute - who dedicated her life's work and merits  exclusively towards the relief of the Poor Souls.  Bl. Marie mystically shared in their suffering so she had firsthand knowledge of the painful purification the Holy Souls endured.  She was definitely the right holy person to share about today and I think our prayer participants appreciated learning about her saintly life.
The display altar with the Holy Relics of the Blessed Mother and Bl. Marie of Providence.
People often stop to view the relics and pray before heading to the main church next door for Mass.
Afterwards, I gave the participants a few moments to bring to mind family and friends who have since passed away, towards whom they could apply our Rosary Prayer.  There was a "presence" as we began to pray - something otherworldly, yet good - and at least two people reported to me that they had mysteriously experienced the strong fragrance of fresh roses in our Day Chapel (there were no roses in the chapel), which I smelled, too.  It was just another small confirmation that there was more going on during our prayer time than what is perceived with the eyes.
"The [holy] souls are in prison, a fire, but the Good God asks us only
for a prayer to let them out and we don't say it."
~ words of Bl. Marie of Providence,
Founder of the Society of the Helpers of the Holy Souls
So ended another First Saturday Rosary at St. Anthony of Padua Church.  Our next Rosary Prayer gathering will be on December 7th, the eve of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.  It won't be like our normal monthly Rosary Meetings, but rather we will honor our dear Blessed Mother with a special candlelight procession while praying the Rosary, and a potluck celebration afterwards.  I can't wait - I know it'll be another awesome prayer event in our Kailua community!

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