Remembering Lives of Service

Today’s Word:

She, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood.
(Luke 21:4)


On This Date…

On Saturday, November 25, 1893, Abbot Bernard Pennings, O.Praem., age 32, reached his first mission in America – Our Lady the Snows Parish in Delwiche, Wisconsin. In his first letter to his mother he wrote, “Although the journey was long and difficult, we did not suffer at all, thanks to your prayers and those of our friends and acquaintances.”

On November 25, 1963, President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, age 46, was buried in Arlington National Cemetery after the Mass of Christian Burial at the Cathedral of Saint Matthew in Washington, D.C. Leaders of 92 nations attended the Funeral Mass, and one million people lined the route from the US Capitol to the Cathedral. An eternal flame marks the grave in Arlington.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus commends a poor widow who gave two small coins, saying, “She, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood.” During this week of Thanksgiving, we recall the lives and service of Abbot Pennings and President Kennedy.

– Father McLaughlin

150 Years After Gettysburg

Today’s Word:

… this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom – and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
– from Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address


On This Date…

LincolnGettysburg

On November 19, 1863, 150 years ago today, President Abraham Lincoln traveled to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania to speak at the dedication ceremony of the Soldiers’ National Cemetery. The cemetery commemorates the soldiers who fought and died at Gettysburg from July 1-3, 1863. At the Battle of Gettysburg, 3,155 Union soldiers died; 14,529 soldiers were wounded; and 5,365 soldiers were listed as “missing.” Confederate losses were even higher. The battle stands as the bloodiest three days of American history to date.

As President Lincoln looked upon the rows of graves, he said:

But, in a large sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here have consecrated it …from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion.

We can pray today, in the words of President Lincoln that “this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom – and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

– Father McLaughlin

Celebrate Faith

Today’s Word:

Stand up and go your way; your faith has saved you.
(Luke 17:19)


On This Date…

On November 13, 354, Saint Augustine was born in North Africa. After his conversion in 387, he was ordained a priest and bishop, and he wrote the Rule that Norbertines follow.

Abbot Pennings and his companions made their trans-atlantic journey on the SS Veendam.

Abbot Pennings and his companions made their trans-atlantic journey on the SS Veendam.

On November 13, 1893, Abbot Bernard Pennings, O.Praem., the founder of Archmere, and two Norbertine companions, arrived in New Jersey by boat from Holland. Twenty-three other Dutch Norbertines would later come to America as missionaries in Wisconsin.

On November 13, 1963, 50 years ago today, Daylesford Priory was established as an independent Norbertine community; the Norbertines of Daylesford currently sponsor Archmere.

On November 13, 2006, ground was broken at Archmere for the Student Life Center; it was dedicated on October 12, 2007.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus says to the healed man, “Stand up and go your way; your faith has saved you.” Today, we celebrate the faith of Saint Augustine, Abbot Pennings and his companions, and the benefactors of the Student Life Center.

– Father McLaughlin