Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy All Saints Day!!!

I wish you all a Happy Feast of All Saints. Here is a funny song that mention more than 100 saints in 1 1/2 minute…

Here is a serious one…. It is the Litany of the Saints at the Funeral of John Paul II. All Saints Day (November 1st) is the anniversary of John Paul’s Ordination to the Priesthood in 1946…

All Saints Day is also a day that we remember saints who are not officially canonized by the Pope. With thankful heart, I remember the babies I baptized at the hospital who are now in Heaven. When a priest gives the Sacrament, he is giving something what he himself cannot give.

I also want to share my talk on Holiness with you. This talk is one of my most favorites. I have been giving this talk many times in different places @ retreats & conferences in the past 4 years. The outline of this talk is base on a book called “The Spiritual Life”. Here is an outline of the talk:

Means to Holiness

Interior Means

Exterior Means

Desire for Holiness

Spiritual Direction

Knowledge of God & Knowledge of Self

Schedule of Daily Prayer

Conformity to the Will of God

Spiritual Readings

Prayer

Sanctification of Social Relations

Talk on Holiness

Repeating Myself

Haven’t posted anything in the last 2 days. I am sick with a flu, & last night I was too sick even to teach or to blog. I got a good long sleep. Today, I am resting, praying, & blogging. But I also have 2 Masses & sermons & talks to prepare. Anyhow, in the last few days, I found I repeated myself many times….

On Tuesday & Thursday I helped out the Chinese RCIA @ Corpus Christi. I basically repeated what I taught at the Chinese RCIA here @ St. Pats.

On Wednesday morning I finished visiting the religion classes & I repeated 6 more times by giving them the talk on the Rosary. One class had their religion @ computer lab. I told the students about my blog. And the kind teacher, projected my blog on the big screen. And I explained the layout & contents of this blog. It was fun…

On Wednesday around noon, I said Mass @ Universality (UBC), and I repeated part of the talk I gave to my 3 prayer groups about the Presence of God…

St. Francis de Sales teaches to use these 4 considerations:

“1. a lively earnest realization that His Presence is universal; that is to say, that He is everywhere, and in all, and that there is no place, nothing in the world, devoid of His Most Holy Presence…

2. call to mind that God is not only present in the place where you are, but that He is very specially present in your heart and mind, which He kindles and inspires with His Holy Presence, abiding there as Heart of your heart, Spirit of your spirit…

3. dwell upon the thought of our Lord, Who in His Ascended Humanity looks down upon all men, but most particularly on all Christians, because they are His children; above all, on those who pray, over whose doings He keeps watch….

4. exercise your ordinary imagination, picturing the Saviour to yourself in His Sacred Humanity as if He were beside you just as we are wont to think of our friends, and fancy that we see or hear them at our side. But when the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar is there, then this Presence is no longer imaginary, but most real…” (Introduction to the Devout Life Part II, Chapter 2)

The church @ UBC…

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On Wednesday night, I repeated myself again by using the pop-up book on Jesus Christ @ Confirmation Class. For 1st Communion Class I repeated myself again by comparing the word “church” with the word “school”…

Both the words "church" & "school" can refer to both people & building. The school has 2 groups of people: teachers & students. The Church also has 2 groups of people: clergy & faithful. Students learn from teachers & the faithful learn from the clergy. The head of the school is the principal & the head of the Church is the Pope.

Yesterday, I helped out Corpus Christi Elementary School by visiting the classrooms. I gave them the same talk on the saints I gave on Tuesday to the students of St. Pats Elementary. After the classroom visitations, to my surprise, I saw my students & teachers from St. Pats @ Corpus Christi. There was a girl volleyball game between the 2 schools. I was there for the 1st round. Seeing my old students & my new students playing against each other, I had a hard time deciding whom to cheer. Finally, St Pats won the game.

“Repetition is the Mother of Learning”. I have learnt quite a lot by repeating myself.

Repeating oneself is something a priest have to do often. But I firmly believe that if one do that with a spirit of love, prayer , & sacrifice, God will make use of our simple words to touch the hearts of many. Please do say a prayer for the people I am teaching…. Thanks.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

My Vestments

Finally!!! It had arrived!!! My new Roman Vestment! This is the 8th & my last Roman Vestment. This is the Rose one. And now my collection is complete!!!

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I am keeping the Roman Vestments @ my former parish, Corpus Christi, because I am still saying the Chinese Sunday Mass there. Sometimes, I also say Mass there on special occasions, like wedding or funeral. Here are my other 7 Roman Vestments…

SANY0005 SANY0012

SANY0007 SANY0008

SANY0009 SANY0010

SANY0006SANY0011

SANY0013 SANY0014

SANY0004 SANY0001

I like Roman Vestments (Fiddleback) because when I was an altar boy in Hong Kong, my pastor (@ St. Jude’s, North Point, H.K.), Fr. Mak, wore fiddlebacks for weekday Masses. When I became a priest 2 years ago, my interest on fiddleback was re-enkindled by this post from a blog. So I started to purchase them bit-by-bit.

I also have a good collection of Gothic Vestments here at St. Patrick’s parish (you can click on images for bigger size)…

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I really like to celebrate Liturgy with dignity & beauty. It has been a great joy to wear these beautiful vestments in the past 2 years as priest. Many of my Vestments were from Ordination gifts. I thank God for the generosity of my relatives & friends.

Talk on the Saints

I felt like Moses this morning when I did my classroom visitations at St. Pats Elementary. I was holding 2 big icons (not 2 tablets!!!). I talked about different kinds of saints: Apostles, Martyrs, Pastors, Doctors, virgins, Holy Men, & Holy Women. Priests wear red (symbol of Holy Spirit, blood, love, & victory) vestments for Apostles & Martyrs. They wear white (symbol of purity, light, & joy) for the other saints.

The icons I brought were from Russia. The 1st icon has 160 different images of Our Lady. The 2nd icon has different saints…

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I also told the children to process of Canonization:

Servant of God

Venerable

Blessed

Saint

By declaring a person “blessed”, the pope gives permission to the faithful to honor the person as a saint.

By declaring a person “saint”, the pope is using his infallible authority declaring to the whole Church that the person is in Heaven. Church building can be dedicated under a saint’s name.

How can we honor the saints?

We can honor the saints:

first, by imitating their holy lives;

second, by praying to them;

third, by showing respect to their relics and images.

I played a game with the children: I asked them to give me a saint name, and I would immediately tell the class the feast day of that saint. They gave me many names, and I was able to give a date for most of them at very fast pace.

This afternoon, I started some private instructions. I am now giving instruction to an elderly Chinese lady. I am also instructing 3 children. All 4 are preparing for Baptism. I like to use very simple catechism books for private instructions. And I am preparing to start some more private instructions later this school year.

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I really enjoy giving private instructions. It is much more personal & flexible. Passing the Faith from person-to-person, heart-to-heart is indeed very beautiful. Thanks be to God!!!

Answer for Good Old Days Photo

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Could you guess who am I? Look at the other picture. We took it in 2001, and we stood in the reverse order…

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I was a seminarian at the time & my cousin was a nun of the Dominicans of St. Cecilia in the U.S. My cousin & I were baptized together on Easter Sunday 1976. Now I am a priest & she is a nun: Sr. Mary Jacinta Li.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Spiritual Life Talks

Today, I gave 2 talks (+ 1 sermon) on the importance of the interior/spiritual life.

The Gospel at Mass this morning (Luke 13:10-17) was about Jesus healed a crippled woman. The crippled woman is a symbol of sinful humanity being earth bounded, and cannot look up to Heaven. We all need the healing power of Jesus in order to be detached from earthly things, and be attached to God.

But we need to cooperate with Jesus by being serious about our interior life. There are 3 things we should do:

1. Set aside time for prayer each day, and stick to our priority.

2. Try to be recollected during the day by turning our mind to God from time to time.

3. Spent time before the Blessed Sacrament. It is an invaluable school for the interior life.

St. Joseph Cafasso did point out that the greatest enemy of the Holy Priesthood is "worldliness". Being earth bounded makes a priest ineffective, but a strong interior life enables a priest to serve the people with quite different power & unction.

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This morning, I led the smallest of my 3 private prayer group (in Chinese). I talked about chapters 1 to 13 from the part 2 of the Introduction to the Devout Life from St. Francis de Sales. I talked about how to meditate, and to pray during the day. I encouraged the parents to drop by the chapel to pray after they send their children to school or before they pick them up from school.You can listen to the talk right at this post. Or to download the talk or the English version from my web page. The title of the file is "Prayer".

This afternoon, we had the Queen of Angels Group @ St. Pats. As usual, we prayed the Rosary together. I also share the same topic with the young people of the importance of the spiritual life. I purposed to the young people, that from next meeting on, we will spend the 1st part of the meeting @ the chapel. So that we can pray the Rosary in front of the Blessed Sacrament. The young people liked the idea.

After praying the Rosary & my talk, we played some games outdoor. And we also played a game using the "Friendly Defenders Catholic Flash Cards", so that the young people could learn a bit of apologetics.

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Sunday, October 26, 2008

Another Beautiful Sunday

The theme of this Sunday's Gospel is Love. You can hear me sermons @ my last 2 posts below. I preached on loving God & loving others.

Love God:

  • "The measure of loving god is, to love without measure." (St. Bernard)
  • Charity is the queen of all virtues.

Love Others:

  • To love self & others out of love for God (supernatural love)
  • The Golden Rule:

Negatively: do to no one what you do not want others to do to you

Positively: do to others what you would like others to do to you

You can also download my sermons from my web page.

This afternoon I had the joy of baptizing Baby Justin...

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Later in the afternoon, I met the Lee family @ the Chinese Mass in Corpus Christi church. We prayed for the eternal rest of Mrs. June Lee. Some relatives were from out of town. I was glad to see Meagan from Toronto. She was a participant of this year ECCCLC. If you want to know more about ECCCLC, please read my posts from late August & early September.

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This evening, we had Life Teen @ St. Pats. We had fast food style supper...

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I gave the young people a talk on the Real Presence. Then we had Adoration in the church...

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After Life Teen, I went for supper with a few Chinese families from Corpus Christi...

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I also blessed the house (in Chinese)....

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