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The straying sheep you have not recalled; the lost sheep you have not sought. In one way or another, we go on living between the hands of robbers and the teeth of raging wolves, and in light of these present dangers we ask your prayers. The sheep moreover are insolent. The shepherd seeks out the straying sheep, but because they have wandered away and are lost they say that they are not ours. “Why do you want us? Why do you seek us?” they ask, as if their straying and being lost were not the very reason for our wanting them and seeking them out. “If I am straying,” he says, “if I am lost, why do you want me?” You are straying, that is why I wish to recall you. You have been lost, I wish to find you. “But I wish to stray,” he says: “I wish to be lost.”

So you wish to stray and be lost? How much better that I do not also wish this. Certainly, I dare say, I am unwelcome. But I listen to the Apostle who says: Preach the word; insist upon it, welcome and unwelcome. Welcome to whom? Unwelcome to whom? By all means welcome to those who desire it; unwelcome to those who do not. However unwelcome, I dare to say: “You wish to stray, you wish to be lost; but I do not want this.” For the one whom I fear does not wish this. And should I wish it, consider his words of reproach: The straying sheep you have not recalled; the lost sheep you have not sought. Shall I fear you rather than him? Remember, we must all present ourselves before the judgement seat of Christ.

I shall recall the straying; I shall seek the lost. Whether they wish it or not, I shall do it. And should the brambles of the forests tear at me when I seek them, I shall force myself through all straits; I shall put down all hedges. So far as the God whom I fear grants me the strength, I shall search everywhere. I shall recall the straying; I shall seek after those on the verge of being lost. If you do not want me to suffer, do not stray, do not become lost. It is enough that I lament your straying and loss. No, I fear that in neglecting you, I shall also kill what is strong. Consider the passage that follows: And what was strong you have destroyed. Should I neglect the straying and lost, the strong one will also take delight in straying and in being lost.”

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Saint Ambrose (c.340-397), Bishop of Milan and Doctor of the Church
Commentary on St Luke’s Gospel, 2, 26-27 (SC 45)

“Glorify the Lord with me” (Ps 34 [33]:4)

If only Mary’s soul might dwell in us all to praise the Lord; if only Mary’s spirit might dwell in us all to exult in God. If, physically speaking, there is only one Mother of Christ, Christ is the fruit of all of us through faith since every soul receives the Word of God provided it remains without fault, preserved from evil and sin, guarding its chastity in uncorrupted purity. For every soul to attain this state exalts the Lord just as Mary’s soul exalted the Lord and as her spirit rejoiced in God her Saviour.

The Lord is indeed glorified, as you have read elsewhere: “Glorify the Lord with me” (Ps 34 [33]:4). Not that human words can add anything to the Lord but because he is growing greater in us. For “Christ is the image of God” (2Cor 4:4) and therefore the soul who does something righteous and holy glorifies that image of God in the likeness of which it has been created. Thus too, by glorifying it, the soul participates in a certain manner in its greatness and is raised up by it. It seems to reproduce this image in itself through the brilliant colours of its good works and to imitate it in a certain way by its virtues.”

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An Emperor – Saint? Yes, Blessed Karl of Australia was Emperor of Austria. I came to know of this great saint on http://www.ewtn.com show recently and the stories of miracles attributed to his intercession are many.

http://www.emperorcharles.org/welcome

http://www.emperorcharles.org/biography

Karl of the House of Austria was born in Persenbeug in 1887.  On October 21, 1911, he married Zita of Bourbon-Parma. With his wife and children he led an exemplary family life — a true domestic church, shaped by his intimate love for the Blessed Sacrament and devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. In 1916, in the midst of the First World War he became Emperor of Austria and was crowned King of Hungary. He strove for a fair and lasting peace, and promoted equity and justice.  After the revolution of the Provisional National Assembly in 1919, he was banished into exile, lived in poverty and bore his illness with a profound trust in God. He died on April 1, 1922, in Funchal on the island of Madeira, while calling upon the name of Jesus.

Prayer:  O Blessed Emperor Karl, you accepted the difficult tasks and burdensome challenges that God gave you during your life. In every thought, decision and action you trusted always in the Holy Trinity. We pray to you to intercede for us with the Lord our God to give us faith and courage, so that even in the most difficult situations of our earthly lives we may not lose heart, but continue faithfully in the footsteps of Christ.

Ask for us the grace that our hearts may be moulded into the likeness of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Help us to work with compassion and strength for the poor and needy, to fight with courage for peace in our homes and in the world, and in every situation to trustingly place our lives in the hands of God, until we reach Him, as you did, through Christ our Lord.

Amen.

Imprimator: Archdiocese of Vienna, May 18, 2004 Z1. K787/07 or K788/04, 
Vicar Apostolic Dr. Franz Schuster

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The world has grown old; the human race is adrift. Well, yes, if we abandon humanity to its natural course, to its fatal direction. No, if the power from on high that is preserved in the religion of Jesus and in His Church is poured out anew on all ranks of the human race and restores them to life.
– Blessed Anton Martin Slomsek (1800-1862), Bishop, Feast day September 24

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You will love this beautiful presentation on the life of St John Paul II

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“Heavenly Father, when she was young, Saint Amata of Assisi rejected You and rebelled against morality. Eventually her aunt, Saint Clare of Assisi, converted her and brought the girl into her religious order. I lift up to you all the teenagers I know; guide them to true wisdom, which comes from the Holy Spirit, and help them to desire good values as part of their relationship with a good and loving God.   I also give to You everyone else who is rebelling against Truth, including the media that spreads immorality. May the victory of Jesus set them all free from the demons that try to block the way to Heaven. Saint Amata, pray for us. Amen.
– Saint Amata of Assisi (died 1250), Sister of the Poor Clares, Feast day February 20, from Terry Modica’s book “Daily Prayers with the Saints”, Queenship Publishinghttp://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=1302

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