Highlights of St. Anthony of Padua

Franciscan Thaumaturgist, born at Lisbon, 1195; died at Vercelli [actually Arcella --Ed.], 13 June, 1231. He received in baptism the name of Ferdinand. Having been educated in the Cathedral school, Ferdinand, at the age of fifteen, joined the Canons Regular of St. Augustine, in the convent of St. Vincent, just outside the city walls (1210). Two years later to avoid being distracted by relatives and friends, who frequently came to visit him, he betook himself with permission of his superior to the Convent of Santa Croce in Cóimbra (1212), where he remained for eight years, occupying his time mainly with study and prayer.

Gifted with an excellent understanding and a prodigious memory, he soon gathered from the Sacred Scriptures and the writings of the Holy Fathers a treasure of theological knowledge. In the year 1220, having seen conveyed into the Church of Santa Croce the bodies of the first Franciscan martyrs, who had suffered death at Morocco, 16 January of the same year, he too was inflamed with the desire of martyrdom, and resolved to become a Friar Minor, that he might preach the Faith to the Saracens and suffer for Christ’s sake. Having confided his intention to some of the brethren of the convent of Olivares (near Cóimbra), who came to beg alms at the Abbey of the Canons Regular, he received from their hands the Franciscan habit in the same Convent of Santa Croce. Thus Ferdinand left the Canons Regular of St. Augustine to join the Order of Friars Minor, taking at the same time the new name of Anthony, a name which later on the Convent of Olivares also adopted.

With the zeal of an apostle he undertook to reform the morality of his time by combating in an especial manner the vices of luxury, avarice, and tyranny. The fruit of his sermons was, therefore, as admirable as his eloquence itself. No less fervent was he in the extinction of heresy, notably that of the Cathares and the Patarines, which infested the centre and north of Italy, and probably also that of the Albigenses in the south of France, though we have no authorized documents to that effect.

At the end of Lent, 1231, Anthony retired to amposanpiero, in the neighbourhood of Padua, where, after a short time he was taken with a severe illness. Transferred to Vercelli, and strengthened by the apparition of Our Lord, he died at the age of thirty-six years, on 13 June, 1231. He had lived fifteen years with his parents, ten years as a Canon Regular of St. Augustine, and eleven years in the Order of Friars Minor. The name of Anthony became celebrated throughout the world, and with it the name of Padua. The inhabitants of that city erected to his memory a magnificent temple, whither his precious relics were transferred in 1263, in presence of St. Bonaventure, Minister General at the time.

Source: Catholic Encyclopedia. “St. Anthony of Padua.” Accessed June 16, 2011. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01556a.htm

The Church honored the Feast of St. Anthony on Monday, June 13th. We have a variety of gift and liturgical items available for St. Anthony to celebrate his life and work. Call us at 1-866-757-5195 or check out our website at Church Supply Warehouse for our selection!!

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Our Lady of Perpetual Help

The picture of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour is painted on wood, with background of gold. It is Byzantine in style and is supposed to have been painted in the thirteenth century. It represents the Mother of God holding the Divine Child while the Archangels Michael and Gabriel present before Him the instruments of His Passion. Over the figures in the picture are some Greek letters which form the abbreviated words Mother of God, Jesus Christ, Archangel Michael, and Archangel Gabriel respectively. It was brought to Rome towards the end of the fifteenth century by a pious merchant, who, dying there, ordered by his will that the picture should be exposed in a church for public veneration. It was exposed in the church of San Matteo, Via Merulana, between St. Mary Major and St. John Lateran. Crowds flocked to this church, and for nearly three hundred years many graces were obtained through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin. The picture was then popularly called the Madonna di San Matteo. The church was served for a time by the Hermits of St. Augustine, who had sheltered their Irish brethren in their distress. These Augustinians were still in charge when the French invaded Rome (1812) and destroyed the church. The picture disappeared; it remained hidden and neglected for over forty years, but a series of providential circumstances between 1863 and 1865 led to its discovery in an oratory of the Augustinian Fathers at Santa Maria in Posterula.
Source:  Catholic Encyclopedia.  “Our Lady of Perpetual Succour.”  Accessed June 9, 2011.  http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11699b.htm
We have a variety of medals, frames, and statues for Our Lady of Perpetual Help available.  We are offering a 26″ x 36″ frame pictured above on sale at $585 with free shipping!  Regular price is $700 plus shipping.  Call us for information or visit us on the web at churchsupplywarehouse.com.
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An Introduction to St. Michael the Archangel

Michael is an archangel in Jewish, Christian, and Islamic tradition. He is viewed as the field commander of the Army of God. He is mentioned by name in the Book of Daniel,[1] the Book of Jude,[2] and the Book of Revelation, in which he leads God’s armies against Satan’s forces during his uprising.[3] In the book of Daniel, Michael appears as “one of the chief princes”[1] who in Daniel’s vision comes to Gabriel’s aid in his contest with the angel of Persia (Dobiel). Michael is also described there as the advocate of the Children of Israeland as a “great prince who stands up for the children of your [Daniel's] people”.[4]

In Hebrew, Michael means “who is like God” (mi-who, ke-as or like, El-deity), which in Talmudic tradition is interpreted as a rhetorical question: “Who is like God?” (which expects an answer in the negative) to imply that no one is like God. In this way, Michael is reinterpreted as a symbol of humility before God.[5][6]

In Roman Catholicism Saint Michael has four distinct roles. First, he is the supreme enemy of Satan and the fallen angels. He vanquished Satan and ejected him from Paradise and will achieve victory at the hour of the final battle with Satan. Secondly, he is the Christian angel of death: at the hour of death, Saint Michael descends and gives each soul the chance to redeem itself before passing, thus consternating the devil and his minions. Saint Michael’s third role is weighing souls in his perfectly balanced scales (hence the saint is often depicted holding scales) on Judgment Day. And finally, Saint Michael is the Guardian of the Church.

In the Catholic tradition, Saint Michael symbolizes the victory of good over evil, and he has been widely represented in Catholic art through the ages. Devotions to Saint Michael have a large Catholic following, and a large number of churches are dedicated to him worldwide.

Saint Michael has specific roles within Roman Catholic teachings that range from acting as the chief opponent of Satan to the saving of souls at the hour of death. Roman Catholic literature and traditions continue to point to Saint Michael in contexts as varied as the protection of the Catholic Church to the Consecration of Russia by popes Pius XII and John Paul II regarding the messages reported at Our Lady of Fatima.

Source:  Wikipedia contributors, “Michael (archangel),” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Michael_(archangel)&oldid=428041974 (accessed May 9, 2011).

Wikipedia contributors, “Saint Michael (Roman Catholic),” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia,http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Saint_Michael_(Roman_Catholic)&oldid=426600109 (accessed May 9, 2011).


Special offer:  We are offering a beautiful 29″ St. Michael by Veronese statue in resin dipped bronze and lightly hand-painted for $285.00.  Regularly priced at $412.50, for a limited time we are offering free shipping.  There are limited quantities so order online or call to get one while supplies last.  Just click here to view details.

We also offer a wide selection of St. Michael products to help meet your church’s needs. To view our selection of St. Michael products  such as statues, medals, framed prints and more, click here.  Church Supply Warehouse.

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Highlights of the Life of Pope John Paul II

Early Life

Karol Józef Wojtyła, known as John Paul II since his October 1978 election to the papacy, was born in the Polish town of Wadowice, a small city 50 kilometers from Krakow, on May 18, 1920. He was the youngest of three children born to Karol Wojtyła and Emilia Kaczorowska. His mother died in 1929. His eldest brother Edmund, a doctor, died in 1932 and his father, a non-commissioned army officer died in 1941. A sister, Olga, had died before he was born.  He was baptized on June 20, 1920 in the parish church of Wadowice by Fr. Franciszek Zak, made his First Holy Communion at age 9 and was confirmed at 18. 

Upon graduation from Marcin Wadowita high school in Wadowice, he enrolled in Krakow’s Jagiellonian University in 1938 and in a school for drama.  In 1942, aware of his call to the priesthood, he began courses in the clandestine seminary of Krakow, run by Cardinal Adam Stefan Sapieha, archbishop of Krakow. At the same time, Karol Wojtyła was one of the pioneers of the “Rhapsodic Theatre,” also clandestine. 

After the Second World War, he continued his studies in the major seminary of Krakow, once it had re-opened, and in the faculty of theology of the Jagiellonian University. He was ordained to the priesthood by Archbishop Sapieha in Krakow on November 1, 1946.  On July 4, 1958, he was appointed titular bishop of Ombi and auxiliary of Krakow by Pope Pius XII, and was consecrated September 28, 1958, in Wawel Cathedral, Krakow, by Archbishop Eugeniusz Baziak.

Pontificate Highlights

The Cardinals elected him Pope at the Conclave of 16 October 1978, and he took the name of John Paul II. On 22 October, the Lord’s Day, he solemnly inaugurated his Petrine ministry as the 263rd successor to the Apostle. His pontificate, one of the longest in the history of the Church, lasted nearly 27 years.He had more meetings than any of his predecessors with the People of God and the leaders of Nations. More than 17,600,000 pilgrims participated in the General Audiences held on Wednesdays (more than 1160), not counting other special audiences and religious ceremonies [more than 8 million pilgrims during the Great Jubilee of the Year 2000 alone], and the millions of faithful he met during pastoral visits in Italy and throughout the world.  Also note the numerous government personalities he encountered during 38 official visits, 738 audiences and meetings held with Heads of State, and 246 audiences and meetings with Prime Ministers.

His love for young people brought him to establish the World Youth Days. The 19 WYDs celebrated during his pontificate brought together millions of young people from all over the world. At the same time his care for the family was expressed in the World Meetings of Families, which he initiated in 1994.

His most important Documents include 14 Encyclicals, 15 Apostolic Exhortations, 11 Apostolic Constitutions, 45 Apostolic Letters.  He promulgated the Catechism of the Catholic Church in the light of Tradition as authoritatively interpreted by the Second Vatican Council. He also reformed the Eastern and Western Codes of Canon Law, created new Institutions and reorganized the Roman Curia.

Pope John Paul II will be beatified Sunday, May 1, 2011.   

Source:  Vatican.  “His Holiness John Paul II Short Biography.”  Accessed April 26, 2011.

Church Supply Warehouse carries a variety of celebration items such as medals, statuary, and candles.  Visit us online or call 1-866-757-5195 for more information on how you can participate in this momentous occasion.

Special offer:  We are offering a bronze statue to commemorate Pope John Paul II’s beatification. Receive 30% for a limited time!!  Quantities are limited so call us or order online today!   http://bit.ly/k0QLv4

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The Easter Vigil or Holy Saturday Service

In the primitive Church Holy Saturday was known as Great, or Grand, Saturday, Holy Saturday, the Angelic Night, the Vigil of Easter, etc. It is no longer, like Maundy Thursday, a day of joy, but one of joy and sadness intermingled; it is the close of the season of Lent and penance, and the beginning of paschal time, which is one of rejoicing.

The night of the vigil of Easter has undergone a strange displacement. During the first six or seven centuries, ceremonies were in progress throughout the entire night, so that the Alleluia coincided with the day and moment of the Resurrection. In the eighth century these same ceremonies were held on Saturday afternoon and, by a singular anachronism, were later on conducted on Saturday morning, thus the time for carrying out the solemnity was advanced almost a whole day. Thanks to this change, special services were now assigned to Holy Saturday whereas, beforehand, it had none until the late hour of the vigil.

This vigil opened with the blessing of the new fire, the lighting of lamps and candles and of the paschal candle, ceremonies that have lost much of their symbolism by being anticipated and advanced from twilight to broad daylight. St. Cyril of Jerusalem spoke of this night that was as bright as day, and Constantine the Great added unprecedented splendor to its brilliancy by a profusion of lamps and enormous torches, so that not only basilicas, but private houses, streets, and public squares were resplendent with the light that was symbolic of the Risen Christ. The assembled faithful gave themselves up to common prayer, the singing of psalms and hymns, and the reading of the Scriptures commentated by the bishop or priests. The vigil of Easter was especially devoted to the baptism of catechumens who, in the more important churches, were very numerous. On the Holy Saturday following the deposition of St. John Chrysostom from the See of Constantinople, there were 3000 catechumens in this church alone. Such numbers were, of course, only encountered in large cities; nevertheless, as Holy Saturday and the vigil of Pentecost were the only days on which baptism was administered, even in smaller churches there was always a goodly number of catechumens. This meeting of people in the darkness of the night often occasioned abuses which the clergy felt powerless to prevent by active supervision unless by so anticipating the ceremonies that all of them could take place in daylight. Rabanus Maurus, an ecclesiastical writer of the ninth century (De cleric. Instit., II, 28), gives a detailed account of the ceremony of Holy Saturday. The congregation remained silent in the church awaiting the dawn of the Resurrection, joining at intervals in psalmody and chant and listening to the reading of the lessons. These rites were identical with those in the primitive Church and were solemnized at the same hours, as the faithful throughout the world had not yet consented to anticipate the Easter vigil and it was only during the Middle Ages that uniformity on this point was established.

Source:  Catholic Encyclopedia.  “Holy Saturday.”   Accessed April 4, 2011.

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07424a.htm

The Easter Vigil is coming soon!  Get your congregational candles with Church Supply Warehouse by ordering online at:  Church Supply Warehouse!!

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Book signing at Wheaton Religious Gift and Church Supply, Tuesday April 5th, 2011!!

Deacon John Green, founder of Emmaus Ministries, will in the store Tuesday, April 5th, 2011 to sign copies of his newly published, “Street Walking with Jesus.” After reading his book, “You will come away challenged and inspired to live a deeper, more mission-based life.” Deacon Green “didn’t set out to be another Dorothy Day or Mother Theresa, and would be quick to tell you he hasn’t become one. Struck by the words of Micah 6:8 and the act of a homeless man who gruesomely ended his life in Green’s presence, Green vowed to constantly ask himself: How can I live justly? To whom do I show mercy? How may I walk humbly with God?

Deacon Green is the founder of Emmaus Ministries, a non-profit ministry to male prostitutes in Chicago. Emmaus Ministries’ innovative outreach has been featured in numerous Christian and secular television shows, radio broadcasts, magazines and newspapers. John completed a BA in Christian Education from Wheaton College and an MA in Educational Ministries from Wheaton College graduate school in 1992, and in 1997 he earned a Certificate in Non-Profit Business Administration from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

He is a frequent speaker on issues relating to male prostitution, urban ministry, evangelization, and peace and justice work. His wife Carolyn is a nationally performing singer/songwriter. The Green’s have three sons and a daughter. They lived in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago directly in back of Emmaus Ministries for 20 years and relocated to northeast Ohio in 2009. John is an ordained Permanent Deacon in the Roman Catholic Church and serves at Holy Family Parish in Stow, Ohio.

Wheaton Religious Gift will be hosting John Green for his first book signing from 1:00-4:00pm Central time. Stop by for an autographed copy, and take an opportunity to talk with John about his new book or his ministry with Emmaus Ministries.

You may call us at 1-866-757-5195 for more information on available copies of his book, “Street Walking With Jesus,” or order a copy online at Church Supply Warehouse.

Our retail store is located at:

Wheaton Religious Gift and Church Supply

113 W. Front Street

Wheaton, IL 60187

Our store website is:

http://www.churchsupplywarehouse.com/index.asp

Check out his book’s website at:

http://streetwalkingwithjesus.com

We look forward to seeing you!!

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Incense, Its Use and Symbolism in the Church

The use of incense in the ancient world was common, especially in religious rites where it was used to keep demons away. Herodotus, the Greek historian, recorded that it was popular among the Assyrians, Babylonians and Egyptians. In Judaism, incense was included in the thanksgiving offerings of oil, rain, fruits, wine (cf. Numbers 7:13-17). The Lord instructed Moses to build a golden altar for the burning of incense (cf. Exodus 30:1-10), which was placed in front of the veil to the entrance of the meeting tent where the ark of the covenant was kept.  The purpose of incensing and the symbolic value of the smoke is that of purification and sanctification. For example, in the Eastern Rites at the beginning of Mass, the altar and sanctuary area were incensed while Psalm 50, the “Miserere,” was chanted invoking the mercy of God. The smoke symbolizes the prayers of the faithful drifting up to heaven: the Psalmist prays, “Let my prayer come like incense before you; the lifting up of my hands, like the evening sacrifice” (Psalm 141). Incense also creates the ambiance of heaven: The Book of Revelation describes the heavenly worship as follows: “Another angel came in holding a censer of gold. He took his place at the altar of incense and was given large amounts of incense to deposit on the altar of gold in front of the throne, together with the prayers of all God’s holy ones. From the angel’s hand, the smoke of the incense went up before God, and with it the prayers of God’s people.”  The usage of incense adds a sense of solemnity and mystery to the Mass. The visual imagery of the smoke and the smell remind us of the transcendence of the Mass which links heaven with earth, and allow us to enter into the presence of God.

Source:  Father William Saunders.  EWTN.com.  “Why is Incense Used during the Mass?”.  Accessed March 21, 2011.   http://www.ewtn.com/library/ANSWERS/INCENSE.htm.

Restock on incense at 10% off for the next two weeks at Church Supply Warehouse.  Order now to stock up for lent and Easter.  Order online or call 1-866-757-5195!!

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