11/22 Blessed Thanksgiving tomorrow in the Most Holy Divine Will!

Book of Heaven
4/23/32 – Vol. 30  

. . . But while my mind went around in Its Works, my always Lovable Jesus, visiting my poor soul, all tenderness told me: “Blessed daughter of My Volition, since all created things were made for the creatures, My Divine Will remained in each one of them to call the creature, because It did not want to remain alone, but It wanted her for whom things were made, in order to give her the Rights over them and so not remain defrauded in Its Purpose for which It had Created her.

“Now, who hears this call? One who possesses My Will as Life. The Echo of My Will that is in created things forms the same Echo in the soul who possesses It, and in Its very arms It brings her where My Volition Itself calls her. And since she has her Rights given by Me, if she Loves all created things say ‘Love,’ if she adores, they say ‘Adoration,’ if she thanks, they say ‘Thanksgivings,’ in a way that one sees hovering in the sky, in the sun, in the sea, in the wind, in everything, even in the little bird that sings, the Love, the adoration, the thanksgiving of the creature who possesses My Divine Will. How vast is the Love and everything that she can do and say. The Heavens and earth are in her power. 

11/22 Feast Day of St. Cecilia

Born at Rome, of the illustrious family of the Coecilli, Cecilia as a child consecrated her virginity to God.  Forced to marry Valerian, a young pagan, she said to him:  “Valerian, I am placed under the guardianship of an angel who protects my virginity.”

Valerian declared that he would believe in Jesus Christ if he saw the angel.  Cecilia sent him first to Pope Urban, in the Catacombs, to be baptized.  Valerian saw the angel, and got his brother Tiburtius to be baptized; he also saw the angel.  A short time after, both brothers were martyred under the prefect Almachius.

Finally the latter arrested Cecilia and ordered her to be put to death in her home.  This was about 230 A.D.  Her body was discovered in 1599 by Cardinal Sfondrati, just as it was at the moment of her death (see end of this post).

The name of St. Cecilia is mentioned in the Canon of the Mass.

“At the sound of musical instruments,” says the formerlly celebrated first antiphon at Vespers, “the virgin Cecilia sang to God in her heart.”

St. Cecilia is the patroness of musicians.

St. Cecilia

***

Selected Letters of the Servant of God Luisa Piccarreta to Mother Cecilia

33.  To Mother Cecilia

J.M.J.

Fiat – In Voluntate Dei!

My good and reverend Mother,

I feel the certain hope of finding you in the Divine Volition, Which possesses the fullness of all goods; therefore there is no good which I cannot wish you on the beautiful day of your Saint Cecilia.  So I wish you the peace of the Fiat, that may make full day arise in you, always serene, so that the darkness of the night, of disturbances and oppressions may have no place.  Peace can be called daylight of God, in which the Divine Volition forms Its day of ever growing sanctity, and ever new graces.  Dearest Mother, one single act we do in the Divine Will is so great as to surpass the greatness of Heaven and earth; it encloses immensity, power, and all goods.  Therefore my wish for you is that all your life be a continuous act of Divine Will, and then you will have love for all, a sanctity that makes up for all and encloses God Himself.  And when God is with us, what beautiful and good things can we not receive and accomplish?  I could not wish anything more beautiful than the peace of the Divine Will.  It will be your guide, It will sustain you and comfort you in the circumstances of life, and also the bitter ones, which are never lacking.

I leave you in the Divine Volition, so that the feast of Saint Cecilia may be more beautiful, and may be the echo of the feast of Heaven.  My sister kisses your right hand and sends her affectionate and sincere wishes.  And I, renewing my wishes, kiss your right hand.  Most affectionately yours,

the little daughter of the Divine Will

Corato, November 20, 1937

 ***

64.  To Mother Cecilia

In Voluntate Dei!

My good and reverend Mother,

I received your dear letter, that consoled me very much.  Thank you from the heart. In these times my state is very painful, because of the books and other things; but in my poor heart I have the sure hope that these will be the last gems that my dear Jesus will place on my little crown.  And when I feel my hear suffocating with sorrow, I hide in the Divine Will and in It I find the necessary strength.  What a magic force, what powerful magnet does the Divine Will possess!  In the hardest pains It knows how to give rest, placing Its balm on the most embittered wounds.  So, my dearest Mother, let us never move from within the Fiat.  It will form Its divine room in us, in which we will find Jesus, Who will take us in His arms… He will nourish us with the precious food of His Will.  He will cover us with love, hiding all our sufferings in His own, in order to make us more like Him; and in His emphasis of love, He will say to us:  “My daughter, do not fear, I Myself will be your life, your strength, your All.  We will live together and form one single life.  How happy we will be!”

Now, this is my wish for Saint Cecilia:  that the Fiat give you Its divine room, in which you will live one life with dear Jesus.  I can tell you nothing but this:  may the Divine Will cover you and hide you within Itself, but so much as to feel nothing but Will of God within you …

Thank you, thank you for everything.  May Heaven repay you with blessings, and hide you more in His Will, so that the earth may turn into Heaven for you, and all things may be bearers of Divine Will.

I renew my wishes together with my sister.  I believe that this year I am the one opening the wishes for Saint Cecilia – wishes of peace and of union.  Pray for me.  Leaving you in the Divine Will and kissing your right hand, united to my sister, I say,

most affectionately yours,

the little daughter of the Divine Will

Corato, November 10, 1938

 ***

105.  To Mother Cecilia

In Voluntate Dei!

My good and reverend Mother,

I feel the duty to send you my wishes for your Name Day of Saint Cecilia.  She was a martyr of blood, and I wish you a greater martyrdom, more noble and divine, more heroic and more accepted by God – that is, the martyrdom of the Divine Will.  This martyrdom surpasses all other martyrdoms; even more, as many times as you do the Will of God instead of doing yours, so many times will you be able to say:  “I am martyr for You; the martyrdom I offer You is not of blood or of flesh, but with my will united to Yours, I offer You a divine martyrdom.”  Goodness of God!  If only our acts enter the Divine Volition, everything is changed into divine in us, and what is human has no longer life.

Here is my wish.  I could not send you a more beautiful one; more so, since the opportunities are not lacking.  In all circumstances, even painful, you will have a refuge in which to take shelter.  Jesus is waiting for you open arms to receive you and to help you to form in you the noble martyrdom of the Divine Will.

Now let’s come to us.  The Lord has allowed that you go far away, without even seeing each other.  Fiat, Fiat!  And it also seems that you want to forget me:  Fiat to this as well.  But I beg you to never forget to pray for me, poor creature, and from the heart I will do it for you.  It seems to me that I had in you a far away mother who had a thought for me.  Now, Fiat.  Let us remain always united in the Divine Will, from which we will draw the strength and the sanctity He wants from us.

My sister sends you her wishes and kisses your right hand, and I leave you in the Divine Volition to make yourself a saint.  Pray for me.  Kissing your hand, I say,

Most affectionately yours,

The little daughter of the Divine Will.

 ***

115.  To Mother Cecilia

My good and reverend Mother,

Here I am to you, after such a long silence.  Dear Cecilia makes the thought arise in me of sending you my wishes.  But what wishes could I send you?  And here is the Holy Divine Will, which comes before me and says:  “My Will never ends; I have always to give.  Therefore, send her, as wish, my Love which rises continuously, my sanctity which is ever new, my virtue which is always working.  I never tire of speaking, but I also want to receive the little love of the creatures – their will into Mine, to be able to dispose them to receive into their will the prodigies which my Divine Will can do.”

Here is my little wish:  your will at the mercy of the Divine Will.  In this way you will feel in you the Sanctity, the love and the works of the Supreme Fiat as your own.  Your life will no longer be of the earth, but of Heaven.  Your acts will be nothing but divine conquests, in which you will form as many Jesuses for as many acts as you do.  So you will be able to bring Jesus to all.

My good Mother, I think you will appreciate my little wish; more so, since it comes from the heart of a daughter who wants to see her mother as though carried in the arms of the Divine Will, to become the saint It wants her to be.

***

And more on St. Cecilia from the EWTN website (click here)

SAINT CECILIA VIRGIN, MARTYR
SECOND OR THIRD CENTURY
Feast: November 22

 

For over a thousand years St. Cecilia has been one of the most venerated martyrs of the early Church; she is among the seven martyrs named in the Canon of the Mass. According to a tradition current at the end of the fifth century, Cecilia was a Roman girl of patrician family, who had been brought up as a Christian. She fasted often, and wore a coarse garment beneath her rich clothing. Although she wished to remain a virgin, her father betrothed her to a young pagan named Valerian. When the wedding day came, Cecilia sat apart from the guests, repeating psalms and praying. After the ceremony, when the guests had departed and she was alone with her husband, Cecilia made known her great desire to remain as she was, saying that she already had a lover, an angel of God, who was very jealous. Valerian, shaken by suspicion, fear, and anger, said to her: “Show me this angel. If he is of God, I shall refrain, as you wish, but if he is a human lover, you both must die.” Cecilia answered: “If you believe in the one true and living God and receive the water of baptism, then you shall see the angel.” Valerian assented, and following his wife’s directions sought out a bishop named Urban, who was in hiding among the tombs of the martyrs, for this was a time of persecutions. Valerian made his profession of faith and the bishop baptized him. When the young husband returned, he found an angel with flaming wings standing beside Cecilia. The angel placed chaplets of roses and lilies on their heads. The brother of Valerian, Tiburtius, was also converted; and after being baptized he too experienced many marvels. Valerian and Tiburtius devoted themselves to good works in behalf of the Christian community, and they made it their special duty to give proper burial to those Christians who were put to death by order of the prefect Almachius. The two brothers were themselves soon sentenced for refusing to sacrifice to Jupiter. Maximus, a Roman officer charged with their execution, was converted by a vision that came to him in the hour of their death. After professing Christianity, he too suffered martyrdom. The three were buried by the grieving Cecilia, and a little later she herself was sentenced. The prefect came and tried to reason with her, but when he found her firm in the faith and scornful of his threats, he gave an order that she was to be suffocated in her own bathroom. Surviving this attempt on her life, a soldier was sent to behead her. He struck at her neck three times, then left her lying, still alive, for it was against the law to strike a fourth time. She lingered on for three days, during which the Christians who remained in Rome flocked to her house. In dying she bequeathed all her goods to the poor, and her house to the bishop for a Christian place of worship. She was buried in the crypt of the Caecilii at the catacomb of St. Callistus.

The above legend of St. Cecilia dates back, as we have said, to the end of the fifth century. There is no mention of this saint in the Depositio Martyrum, but there is a record of an early Roman Christian church founded by a lady of this name. In the ninth century Pope Paschal I moved the remains of many martyrs from the catacombs to new churches within the city; the presumed relics of St. Cecilia, her husband, his brother, and the Roman officer Maximus, were all placed in the church of St. Cecilia. The origin of her veneration as a patron of music is unknown to us. She was not associated with music in the early period or in the account given in the medieval Golden Legend by Jacobus Voragine, but artists of later times have delighted in depicting her at the organ, singing God’s praise or listening to a choir of angels.

This was taken from “Lives of Saints”, Published by John J. Crawley & Co., Inc.

***

 The photo above is a piece of art by Stefano Maderno (1576-1636). This is how her incorrupt body was found lying before it was moved. The axe marks were visible in her neck and her arm was outstretched with three fingers extended (which was, of course, explained as a testimony to her faith in the Triune God). While at first glance the statue is graceful and flowing, a longer examination reveals the awkwardness of her position. Carved into the floor in front of the altar is this statement:

Behold the body of the most holy virgin Cecilia,
whom I myself saw lying incorrupt in the tomb.
I have in this marble expressed for you the same saint
in the very same posture.

11/21 Feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Religious parents never fail by devout prayer to consecrate their children to the Divine service and love, both before and after their birth. Some amongst the Jews, not content with this general consecration of their children, offered them to God in their infancy, by the hands of the priests in the temple, to be lodged in apartments belonging to the temple, and brought up in attending the priests and Levites in the sacred ministry.

It is an ancient tradition, that the Blessed Virgin Mary was thus solemnly offered to God in the temple in her infancy. This festival of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin, or, as it is often called by the Greeks, the entrance of the Blessed Virgin into the Temple, is mentioned in the most ancient Greek Menologies extant.

 

Excerpt from The Queen of Heaven in the Kingdom of the Divine Will

Day Thirteen

The Queen of Heaven in the Kingdom of the Divine Will departs for the Temple and gives example of Total Triumph in the Sacrifice.

 

The soul to the Triumphant Queen:

Celestial Mama, today I come to prostrate myself before You, to ask for Your Invincible Strength in all my pains; and You know how my heart is filled with them, to the point of feeling drowned with pains. O please! If You love so much to act as my Mother, take my heart in Your hands and pour into it the Love, the Grace and the Strength to triumph in my pains, and to convert them all into Divine Will.

Lesson of the Triumphant Queen:

My daughter, Courage, do not fear; your Mama is all for you, and today I was waiting for you so that My Heroism and My Triumph in the sacrifice may infuse in you Strength and Courage, that I may see My daughter triumphant in her pains, and with the heroism of bearing them with love and in order to do the Divine Will.

Now, My daughter, listen to Me: I had just turned three years old when My parents made known to Me that they wanted to consecrate Me to the Lord in the Temple. My heart rejoiced in hearing this—that is, consecrating Myself and spending My years in the house of God. But beneath My Joy there was a sorrow—for a privation of the dearest persons one can have on earth, which were My dear parents. I was little, I needed their maternal cares; I was depriving Myself of the presence of two great saints. Moreover, I saw that as the day approached on which they were to deprive themselves of Me, who rendered their lives full of joy and of happiness, they felt such bitterness as to feel themselves dying. But, though suffering, they were disposed to make the heroic act of taking Me to the Lord.

My parents loved Me in the order of God, and considered Me a great gift, given to them by the Lord; and this gave them the strength to make the painful sacrifice. Therefore, My daughter, if you want to have Invincible Strength to suffer the hardest pains, let all your things be in the Order of God, and hold them as precious gifts given to you by the Lord.

Now, you must know that I, with Courage, prepared Myself for My departure for the Temple, because, as I delivered My will to the Divine Being and the Supreme Fiat took Possession of My whole being, I acquired all Virtues as My own Nature. I was Dominator of Myself; all Virtues were in Me like many Noble Princesses, and according to the circumstances of My Life, they promptly showed themselves, to do their office without any resistance. In vain would they have called Me Queen, had I not possessed the Virtue of being Queen over Myself. Therefore, I had in My Dominion Perfect Charity, Invincible Patience, Enrapturing Sweetness, Profound Humility, and the whole endowment of the other Virtues. The Divine Will rendered My little earth of My humanity fortunate, always flowery, and without the thorns of vices.

Do you see then, dear daughter, what it means to Live of Divine Will? Its Light, Its Sanctity and Power convert all Virtues into one’s nature; nor does It lower Itself to Reign in a soul where there is a rebellious nature—no, no. It is Sanctity, and It wants the nature in which It must Reign to be Ordered and Holy. Therefore, by the Sacrifice of going to the Temple, it was Conquests that I made; and over this Sacrifice, the Triumph of a Divine Will was formed in Me. And these Triumphs brought into Me New Seas of Grace, of Sanctity and of Light—to the extent of feeling Happy in My Pains, in order to be able to Conquer New Triumphs.

Now, My daughter, place your hand upon your heart, and tell your Mama: do you feel your nature changed into virtue? Or, do you feel the thorns of impatience, the noxious herbs of agitations, the bad humors of affections which are not holy? Listen—let your Mama do it; place your will into My hands, determined in not wanting it any more, and I will make you be Possessed by the Divine Will, which will banish everything from you; and what you have not done in many years, you will do in one day, which will be the beginning of True Life, of Happiness, and of True Sanctity.

The soul:

Holy Mama, help your daughter; make a visit to my soul, and with Your Maternal hands, snatch from me everything You find which is not Will of God. Burn away from me the thorns, the noxious herbs, and You Yourself, call the Divine Will to Reign in my soul.

 

Little Sacrifice:

Today, to honor Me, you will call Me three times to visit your soul, and will give Me all the freedom to do with you whatever I want.

 

Ejaculatory Prayer:

Sovereign Queen, take my soul in Your hands, and transform it completely into Will of God.

11/20 On the Solemnity of Christ the King (on 11/20/1994), Anniversary of the Opening of the Cause of Beatification and Canonization of the Servant of God Luisa Piccarreta

“Most dear ones, even now we are the sons of God, but that which we will be has not yet been revealed. We know then that when He will be manifested, we will be similar to Him because we will see Him as He is.”  I John 3:2

On the Solemnity of Christ the King, 20 November, 1994 in the Mother church of Corato, Mons. Carmelo Cassati, Archbishop of Trani-Barletta-Bisceglie, having received the Non Obstare issued by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, blessed the opening of the Cause of Beatification and Canonization of the Servant of God Luisa Piccarreta, secular third order Dominican. With the Archbishop himself as president of the Ecclesiastical Tribunal, joined by enthusiastic faithful from southern Italy and around the world, Luisa began her triumphal journey toward the Honors of the Altar.

On October 29, 2005, the conclusion of the Diocesan Phase of the  Cause of Beatification and Canonization of the Servant of God, Luisa Piccarreta,  was officially celebrated and transferred to the Vatican.

  Closing of the Diocesan Phase 
of the Cause of Beatification and Canonization
of the Servant of God, Luisa Piccarreta

October 29, 2005

Whoever has received particular  graces attributed to the intercession of the Servant of God Luisa Piccarreta is requested to write to:

Don. Savino Lattanzio
Parrocchia S. Giacomo M.
Caso V. Amanuele, 139
70051 Barletta (BA)
0883/517371

***

“For I reckon that the sufferings of this time are not worthy to be compared with the glory to come, that shall be revealed in us. For the expectation of the creature waiteth for the revelation of the sons of God. For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him that made it subject, in hope: Because the creature also itself shall be delivered from the servitude of corruption, into the liberty of the glory of the children of God.”
Romans 8:18-21

11/18 Dedication of the Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul

We owe to the Holy Apostles the priceless treasure of the Christian faith.  They handed Chris’s teachings down to us.  From them, we recede the Holy Gospel and the letters of the Apostles.  They laid a firm foundation for the Church of Christ.

Both Apostles St. Peter and St. Paul are distinguished for this character, their zealous apostolic labors and their great cult in the Holy Church.

The Basilica of St. Peter on the Vatican and that of St. Paul outside the Walls were consecrated by St. Slyvester on November 18th.

The Basilica of St. Peter’s was completely rebuilt in the 16th century when it was falling into decay.  Julius II and Leo X had recourse to the greatest artists of the age, Bramante and Michael Angelo.  Urban VIII consecrated this church, the vastest and richest in the world, on November 18, 1626.

The Basilica of St. Paul, on the Ostian Way, was nearly completely destroyed by fire in 1823.  The church was rebuilt with unheard of magnificence by Gregory XVI and Pius IX, and consecrated by the latter on December 10, 1854, two days after the proclamation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception.

St. Peter’s stature located at St. Peter’s in Rome
(Note St. Peter’s right foot is warn down from all the years of pilgrim veneration)

Our Lord Jesus Christ, having great plans for St. Peter at the beginning of his calling, changed the name Simon to the symbolic name of Peter-Cephas, which means rock, for he was to be the rock that will form the foundation of His Church.  St. Peter was closely associated with Christ during His public life:  He witnessed the glory of Christ on Mt. Tabor; in the name of all the Apostles, he professed the Divinity of Christ; he was sent with St. John to prepare the Paschal Supper; He witnessed Christ’s agony in the Garden of Olives; the temple tax was paid by Christ for Himself and for Peter.

After the Ascension of Christ, St. Peter became the head of the Apostles and the leader of the first Christian community in Jerusalem.  Under his leadership, a new Apostle was elected to take the place of Judas.   Peter convoked the first church Council in Jerusalem.   St. John Chrysostom calls Peter “the firstborn lamb from the flock of the Good Sheperd.”

The love of Christ was the chief motive of St. Peter’s apostolic activity, labors and sacrifices.  That love finally led him to suffer and die for the sake of his beloved Teacher.  A pious tradition relates that he considered himself unworthy to die on the cross as Christ did, and therefore asked to be crucified upside down.  This tradition is confirmed by Bishop Eusebius (+340) in his History of the Church, and by St. John Chrysostom in a sermon on the Apostles SS. Peter and Paul, in which he says:  “Rejoice, Peter, who dies on the cross head downward.”  St. Peter died in Rome during the reign of Emperor Nero (54-58), between the years of 64-67 A.D.

***

Statue of Saint Paul
by Giuseppe De Fabris 1840
in front of the St. Peters Basilica

St. Paul did not belong to the original group of the twelve apostles, but through his apostolic labors, his dedication, his superhuman sacrifices, and his sufferings in the service of Christ, he receive the title, along with Peter, of the First Apostle.  He is the only one of the Apostles who was highly educated and was by birth a Roman citizen.  While Paul was on his way to Damascus, Christ Himself converted him in a miraculous manner and called him to be an Apostle.  After his conversion from being a persecutor of Christians, he became, in heart and soul, a zealous and courageous apostle of Christ.

“Paul was a wolf,” says St. Chrysostom, “But he became a lamb.  He was a thorn, but he became a fruitful vine.  From an enemy, he became a friend; from a weed, he became wholesome bread . . . The blasphemer became a theologian; the persecutor, a herald of good news; the tormentor – a leader; the traitor – a fellow-champioin.”  (On the Holy Twelve Apostles)

In his apostolic work, St. Paul distinguished himself as a man of uncompromising character, remarkable strength of will and fervent spirit.  For many years, he fearlessly preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ day and night.  His unlimited love for Christ knew no obstacle, recognized no difficulties, and placed no limit to sacrifice.  His love impelled him to undertake great missionary journeys and to establish new Churches; he was always ready to suffer and die for Christ.

The apostle of the Gentiles was not only an excellent preacher and a good organizer, but also an eminent theologian and writer.  From him we have fourteen letters addressed to various Churches or persons in which he clearly expounds the teachings of Christ.  St. Paul gave up his life for Christ in 65 or 67 A.D.