Whoever Is Not With Me Is Against Me

Today’s Word:

“Whoever is not with me is against me” (Luke 11:23)


On This Date…

On March 3, 1175 Norbertine Abbot Frederick died in Holland. He was the son of a poor widow, became first a teacher, then a priest, and finally a Norbertine. Just before he died he asked his community, “Pray for me because I could not care for the poor as much as I wished since the monastery was so poor.” He has been venerated as a saint since 1728.

Mother Katharine had a dream. She later wrote: "I looked up in wonder at God's wonderful ways and thought how little we imagine what may be the result of listening and acting on a desire He puts into the heart. If He puts it into the heart, He will bless it; if we try to act upon it, great will be the effect before God."

Saint Katharine Drexel

On March 3, 1955 Mother Katharine Drexel died in Philadelphia at age 96. She and her two sisters were raised in Philadelphia by their father, a widower and banker; he set up a trust fund for his daughters. Her sisters married but Katharine became a nun and founded the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament in 1891. Mother Katharine established 145 Catholic missions, built 112 school for Native Americans and 50 schools for African Americans, donating her trust fund of $20 million dollars for her charitable work. Mother Katharine was canonized on October 1, 2000.

In today’s Gospel Jesus says, “Whoever is not with me is against me”. Abbot Frederick and Mother Katharine were “with Jesus” in their care for the poor, models for us in Lent.

– Father McLaughlin

Give Them Some Food Yourselves

Today’s Word:

“Give them some food yourselves” (Mark 6:37)


On This Date…

Saint John Neumann

Saint John Neumann

On January 5, 1860 Bishop John Neumann collapsed on Vine Street in Philadelphia and died at age 48; he had become the 4th bishop of Philadelphia in 1852. He was one of six children, born in the Czech Republic in 1811. Putting aside his desire to be a physicist, an astronomer, and a physician, he entered the seminary, emigrated to the United States at age 25, and was ordained a priest in New York the same month. He first served as a missionary in New York and Pennsylvania, attending to many immigrants (he spoke eight languages). In Philadelphia Bishop Neumann opened 58 Catholic schools, initiated the Forty Hours Eucharistic Devotion in parishes, wrote two German catechisms, and totally spent himself in service to farmers, coal miners, and the rural poor. He is buried in Saint Peter’s Church in Philadelphia. Saint John Neumann High School, staffed by the Norbertines from 1934 to 2000, is the alma mater of Mr. Burdziak, Mr. Malseed, Father Zagarella, and myself. Bishop Neumann was canonized a saint in 1977.

In today’s Gospel Jesus told the disciples who saw a vast and needy crowd, “Give them some food yourselves”. Saint John Neumann gave himself completely to the people in Philadelphia.

– Father McLaughlin

A Model Missionary

Today’s Word:

“Jesus went around all of Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom, and curing every disease and illness among the people” (Matthew 4:23)


On This Date…

70

Saint John Neumann

On January 5, 1860, Bishop John Neumann collapsed on Vine Street in Philadelphia and died at age 48; he had become the 4th bishop of Philadelphia in 1852. He was one of 6 children, born in the Czech Republic in 1811. Putting aside his desires to be a physicist, an astronomer, and a physician, John Neumann entered the seminary, emigrated to the United States at age 24, and was ordained priest in New York in 1836. He first served as a missionary in New York and Pennsylvania, attending to many immigrants (he spoke 8 languages).

In Philadelphia, Bishop Neumann opened 58 Catholic schools, finished the cathedral, initiated the Forty Hours Eucharistic Devotion in parishes, wrote 2 German catechisms, and totally spent himself in service to farmers, coal miners, and the rural poor. Bishop Neumann is buried in Saint Peter’s Church in Philadelphia. Bishop Neumann was canonized a saint in 1977. Saint John Neumann High School, staffed by the Norbertines from 1934 to 2000, is the alma mater of Mr. Burdziak, Mr. Malseed, Father Zagarella, and myself.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus “went around all of Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom, and curing every disease and illness among the people”. Like Christ, Bishop Neumann taught, preached, and attended the sick – a model missionary.

– Father McLaughlin