Saturday, October 30, 2010

Little Office of the Immaculate Conception

Today (October 30) is the Feast of St. Alphonsus Rodriguez (532-1617), a married man who experienced lots of human sufferings and later became a lay brother.

St. Alphonsus had a great devotion to the mystery of the Immaculate Conception of Mary. He had a great regard for the Little Office of the Immaculate Conception and popularized its use among others. The saint recited it every day for 40 years. Our Lady is said to have appeared to him, praised him for his devotion, and urged him to recommend this Little Office to others and to spread its use far and wide.

The Missionaries of Charity (founded by Mother Teresa) pray the Little Office everyday. I warmly recommend this devotion to honor Our Lady 7 times a day. The total length of the Little Office is about 15 minutes.

Please click HERE to download the Little Office.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Good News & Bad News

These few days, I have been thinking much about a good news and a bad news.

GOOD NEWS:

The Archbishop told me that the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia will be coming to our Archdiocese, and my cousin, Sister Mary Jacinta Li has been named the first local superior.

image

Please click HERE for videos about the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia.

BAD NEWS:

Our beloved Bishop David Monroe (former Vicar General of our Archdiocese) was seriously injured in an attack

Please click HERE for the news.

This afternoon (Oct. 27), at the children prayer group, I was touched to hear so many of our students mentioned him in the prayer petitions.

Bishop Monroe is a model pastor who have touched the lives of many in Vancouver and Kamloops. Please keep him in prayers.

Personal Update Oct 23-24

Lots of driving during the weekend!!!

After the 4:30 PM Mass on Saturday, I drove to St. Ann’s Parish in Abbotsford to give a talk (7:30-9 PM) on the Holy Eucharist and Eucharistic Miracles. I shared stories of the saints and their relics.

image

image

At 9 PM, I drove from Abbotsford to Squamish (arrived around 11 PM) to hear Confessions of high school students from St. Pat’s at the Encounter Retreat.

I stayed at Squamish overnight. And on Sunday (Oct. 24) I drove 17 km from the camp site to the Dominican Contemplative Nuns to celebrate Mass and to pray the Day Time Hour.

 image

image

image

image

We prayed in the presence of holy relics of many Dominican Saints and Blessed. In the middle of the box are the relics of the True Cross and St. Dominic. I blessed each nun with these relics.

image

In the afternoon, I said Mass for the high school students at the camp site.

image

image

image

At night time, I drove back to Vancouver. 

It was a special weekend, that I said 3 Sunday Masses (including the anticipated Mass) at 3 different locations.

Pax Sinica Article (2010年10月25日): Rules for the discernment of private revelations 分辨真偽的私人啟示

Two weeks ago we looked at Divine Tradition. Public revelation comes to us in Scripture and Tradition. Throughout the history of the Church there have been private revelations. These are supernatural manifestations of hidden truths God makes to private individuals for their own spiritual benefit or that of others. Faith in public revelation is necessary for salvation, whereas private revelations are helpful for salvation.

In recent years there have been numerous reports of alleged apparitions. We need to be very cautious about them, because Satan often uses the "sugar from hell" (i.e. false apparitions) to choke and destroy the "salt of heaven" (i.e. true apparitions). To discern whether an alleged revelation is of divine origin or not, its object, subjects, effects, and signs must be studied.

Object

God does not contradict Himself. A true private revelation must conform to public revelation, the teachings of the Church, and other approved private revelations. Even if the contents of a revelation are 99 per cent in conformity with the Church's teaching and only 1 per cent falsehood, then according to St. Teresa of Avila this revelation must be rejected absolutely!

Private revelations are generally brief, clear, and precise. Every word given at private revelation is for the sanctification of souls. Our Lady did not enter into pointless conversation. Revelations concerning merely curious or useless matters should be rejected as false.

Alleged revelations that contain lies or false prophecies must be rejected. Regarding the manner of speech, Our Lady would never speak in a fretful fashion like a frantic worried woman. True revelations respect free will and do not impose extreme forms of prayer and penance.

Subjects and effects

Studying the effects of an alleged revelation on its seer helps to discern its genuineness. All alleged revelations result in an increase of prayer and devotion. Hence we should not look at the quantity but the quality. True mystics do not just pray more but practise virtues to a heroic degree.

A person cannot remain worldly after seeing Christ or Our Lady. Almost all the unmarried girls who had truly seen Our Lady chose the state of virginity for the rest of their lives. If a seer is making profit from an alleged apparition or if the seer is vain in clothing and appearance, that seer is suspect. Genuine visionaries fly from publicity, while false seers like to travel and seek popularity.

An important criterion in discernment is obedience. A genuine mystic always obey authority. Ordinarily the Holy See does not pronounce judgement on alleged apparitions. It is the authority of the local bishop to do so. So far there has been no private revelation that has received a final condemnation by the local bishop (rather than just initial distrust) and later found to be true. A seer who does not obey the local bishop cannot be genuine.

Signs

Miracles are signs that support the genuineness of a revelation. God does not multiply miracles to satisfy curiosity. Demons cannot perform miracles, but they can do things that look like miracles. A demon can cause apparitions, locutions, visions, voices, levitation, ecstasies, stigmata, halos, odours, things to be moved, signs in the sky, prolonged fast, tongues, secrets revealed, tears, and brass to change to gold.

Only God can create matter out of nothing, provide cures that require instantaneous growth of destroyed tissue, or multiply bread and fishes. An example of a true miracle is a blind child who was born with no pupils and was able to see after the prayer of Padre Pio, now a saint.

I warmly recommend a book by Father Benedict Groeschel, A Still, Small Voice: A Practical Guide on Reported Revelations.

兩週前,我們談及「聖傳」。「公開啟示」是在聖經和聖傳;而在聖教會歷史中,也記載了不少「私人啟示」,屬於天主私下向個別的人,啟示了一些隱藏著的真理,賦予這個人或一總人靈性上的裨益。「公開啟示」為靈魂的得救是必需的,而「私人啟示」,則是為了幫助我們得救靈魂。

近年出現了很多「顯現」的聲明,我們對此要十分小心!撒旦會利用「地獄之糖」(即虛假顯現)去窒息和摧毀「天堂之鹽」(即真實顯現)。要分辨當中啟示的真偽,不能不仔細研究其內容、神視者、成效與徵兆。

內容

天主絕不自我矛盾。「私人啟示」必需與既有的「公開啟示」、教會訓導和已確認真實的私人啟示,相輔相承;即使當中只有極小比例與聖教教義互有差異或相沖,都當作「虛假」處理 —— 誠如聖女大德蘭所教導: 要絕對棄絕這些所謂的啟示!

真實的「私人啟示」,一般是簡潔清淅。每一個字都是為聖化人靈。聖母絕不會作無謂的閒談。如果一個所謂「私人啟示」的內容只是滿足好奇心和空洞無益的,那啟示必定是虛假的。

一個有謊話或假預言的所謂「私人啟示」必定是虛假的。顯現的聖母,言談絕不會像一個焦急煩躁的女人。此等虛論和誤導的所謂「私人啟示」,均要盡被擯棄。

真實的「私人啟示」尊重人的自由意志,不會強加極端苛嚴的祈禱和補贖方式。

成效

要辨別每件「私人啟示」個案的真偽,可細察神視者得啟示後的成效。不論真實或虛假的啟示都會令人多行祈禱敬禮,因此要分辨真偽,我們必需觀察成效的「質」而不單只看「量」。神視者得到真的啟示後,不但更熱心祈禱和敬禮,而且修德行到英雄式的地步。

親睹過基督或聖母的神視者,不會再留戀世俗的錦衣華美,更不會藉啟示圖謀世利錢財。在教會公認的「私人啟示」中,幾乎所有見過聖母顯現的童貞女,都效法聖母,終身守貞。真正的神視者,通常都很「低調」;相反,假的神視者喜歡四處週遊,自覓風光。

另一個辨證的方法,就是「服從教會」。教廷普遍不會對「顯現」作出判决,這是當地主教的權利和責任。到目前為止,從來沒有一個地方主教對否定「顯現」的判决被教廷所推反。不願意服從地方主教的人,不會是真正的神視者。

徵兆

「聖蹟」是印證真實啟示的徵兆。天主的聖蹟不是用來滿足好奇心,而魔鬼只能以酷似奇蹟的事情娛眾 —— 牠可製造顯現、聲音、神魂超拔、假聖印、假光環、假天象、語重義謬的說話、詭秘莫測的訊息、奇幻擬真的物質轉化等。

只有天主才有從虛無中創造的能力,就如病患組織的霍然消失、增餅的奇蹟等等。看看聖庇奧神父St. Padre Pio藉天主能力行的聖蹟吧:聖人熱切祈禱後,一個天生沒有眼球的小孩,竟然張開眼睛,能夠清楚看到周圍!

我誠意推介本篤.葛詩傲神父Fr. Benedict Grosechel的一本書:A Still, Small Voice: A Practical Guide on Reported Revelations。

Friday, October 22, 2010

Personal Update

Baptism of baby on Saturday (Oct. 16)

image

Baptism of two babies on Sunday (Oct. 17)

image image

Please click HERE for my Sunday sermon on the PATH of Prayer.

Farewell to Carmen Herrera who is joining the Daughters of Saint Mary of Providence.

image

Study week for priests least than 5 years at Rosemary Heights Retreat Center from Oct. 18-22. It was a good experience to meet and to talk with priests from other dioceses. Quite often priests in other dioceses in Canada have to drive many kilometers on the weekend  to different churches to say Masses.

image image image image image image

image

Please click HERE for my Sunday Sermon from last week.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Pax Sinica Article (2010年10月18日): Veneration of relics of the saints 恭敬聖人聖髑的意義

This month our archdiocese has been blessed with the presence of relics of St. John Vianney and St. John Bosco.
    According to the Modern Catholic Dictionary, a relic is "an object connected with a saint, e.g. part of the body or clothing or something the person has used or touched."
    "Relics are of three classes: the first is part of the saint's body and is the type placed in the altar stone; the second is part of the clothing or anything used during the saint's life; and the third is any other object, such as a piece of cloth, that has been touched to a first-class relic."


    Means of connection


    The veneration of relics helps us connect to the past, present, and future.
    Relics connect us to the past. They remind us that the saints were real human beings with flesh and bones. The saints experienced human weaknesses, trials, and limitations, but by their co-operation with divine grace they became the heroes of their times, and they contributed marvellously to the glorious history of the Church.
    Relics connect us to the present reality of the communion of saints. The souls of the saints are now in heaven. A relic represents a saint in heaven. When we pray before a relic, we pray to the saint it represents. Relics and sacred images remind us of the loving protection and intercession of the saints.
    Relics also help us to feel connected with the holy places where tombs of the saints are located. Furthermore, relics help us to feel connected with the religious communities that the saints belonged to.
    Relics inspire us to hope for the future. The veneration of relics increases our desire to meet the souls of the saints in heaven. Relics remind us of the resurrection of the dead. The bodies of the saints will rise in glory on the last day. We hope to share the same glory with the saints.


    An example


    Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich (1774-1824) was a mystic who had the exceptional gift of recognizing relics. One time she saw relics and exclaimed: "They are shining: what treasures we possess, more valuable than a kingdom."
    Regarding relics that had been buried and neglected, she said, "I saw that these neglected treasures confer blessings wherever they lie and ward off Satan's influence. I have seen certain places preserved from serious calamities by them whilst others of recent date suffered severely, because possessing nothing of the kind."
    Blessed Catherine lived during a time when churches were being dismantled and convents being suppressed. Many relics were neglected or treated disrespectfully. This was a source of deep sorrow for her and she strove to revive veneration of these relics. People brought her relics, so that at the time of her death she possessed more than 300.
    During her lifetime, Blessed Catherine venerated the relics of saints with deep devotion. With the help of these saints, she is now a blessed in the Church, and her own body has become a holy relic!
    Blessed Catherine was intensely devoted to the Holy Eucharist. For years she ate practically nothing except Holy Communion. The bodies of the saints were made holy by the Eucharist. The same Eucharist will make our bodies holy too!
    In Vancouver I am hosting three prayer groups in Cantonese and English. We pray the Rosary, learn about the teachings and lives of the saints, and honour the holy relics of different saints. If you are interested in joining, please visit my website for more information.

image

image

本月份,我們教區有幸恭迎聖若翰.維雅奈及聖若望.鮑思高兩位聖人的聖髑。「聖髑」是指那些與聖人有關的物件,並分三個等級:一級聖髑是指聖人遺骸,有被放在祭台聖石之內或祭台下;二級聖髑是指聖人生前的衣著或曾用過的物件;三級聖髑是指那些接觸過一級聖髑的物件。

聯繫的中介

恭敬聖人聖髑,幫助我們聯繫過去、現在和未來。

聖髑幫助我們緬懷過去。它們提醒我們: 聖人曾如現在的我們,是個血肉之軀,經歷人性軟弱、試探和局限;但他們與天主聖寵合作,成了教會的英雄,為教會寫下光輝的一章。

聖髑幫助我們感受現在的諸聖相通功。聖人的靈魂現處天堂,聖髑代表聖人。當我們在聖髑前祈禱,我們是向聖髑所代表的聖人祈禱。聖髑和聖相提醒我們聖人在天堂上的代禱和他們對我們的呵護。看到聖髑,使我們想到埋葬聖人的聖地和他們生前所屬的教會團體。

聖髑啟發我們對將來的真希望,激發我們渴望到天堂與那些聖人相聚,也提醒我們,萬民在世界末日的復活,而期望最終能與他們分享同一的光榮。

一個榜樣

真福安納.嘉琳.庵慕烈Anne Catherine Emmerich (1774-1824) 得到很多私人啟示。她具有分辨聖髑的神恩。有一次她看見聖髑,即興奮地說:「聖髑光芒萬象,我們擁有這些珍寶,比一個王國還要珍貴!」有關被埋下和遺忘的聖髑,真福庵慕烈說:「我看見那被忽視的珍寶為地區帶來祝福,並驅除了撒旦的影響力。我見到一些地方因聖髑而免於災難;其它地方則在近期受到蹂躪,因為那些地方欠缺聖髑。」

真福長於教會多災多難之期,很多聖髑被忽視和失敬。她深感痛惜,努力推動重新恭敬聖髑的意識,更積極身體力行。人們把聖髑送給她。在去世時,真福安納擁有超過三百件聖髑。在聖人們的幫助下,她努力成聖。如今她已被宣為真福,而她自己的遺骸亦被尊為聖髑!

福女十分敬禮聖體。多年來,她基本上不進食任何食物,只領聖體。聖體祝化了聖人的身體,同一的聖體也將聖化我們!

在溫哥華,我以粵語和英語,主持三個祈禱會;我們公唸玫瑰經,分享聖人的教導和行實,並供瞻多個不同聖人的聖髑。如有興趣參與,可到我的網址細閱詳情。

Published at Pax Sinica column (October 18) of The B.C . Catholic newspaper

_________________________________________________

Information of my 3 prayer groups:

Hearts of Jesus and Mary Prayer Group (around 30-40 people)

  • In Cantonese
  • Every 1st & 3 rd Sunday
  • 7 PM to 9 PM
  • Corpus Christi Parish, Vancouver

Our Lady of Fatima Prayer Group (around 20-30 people)

  • In English
  • Every 1st & 3rd Monday
  • 7 PM to 9 PM
  • St. Patrick’s Parish, Vancouver

Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Prayer Group (around 15 to 20 people)

  • In Cantonese
  • Every 2nd & 4th Monday
  • 9:45 AM to 11 AM
  • At a private home (SE Vancouver, close to Burnaby)

________________________________________

Our Meetings:

Rosary with guided meditations (Evening groups have Night Prayer & Benediction as well).

Talk on Summa Theologica (St. Thomas Aquinas) & Lives of the Saints.

Pray Litany of Loreto before holy relics. Blessing of Mary, Help of Christians. Individual blessing with holy relics.

Contact Father Anthony Ho:  fatheranthonyho@gmail.com or 604-874-7818 (St. Patrick’s Parish)

One Day Trip to Mission

Last Monday (October 11, Thanksgiving Day), I led members of my three prayer groups on a trip to Mission, BC.

We attended the 8:15 AM Mass at St. Patrick’s and left around 9:15 AM.

Our first stop was Westminster Abbey.

We visited the cemetery and the little grotto.

 

image image

image

At the little grotto, I blessed each person with a relic of St. Benedict. 

image

image

We joined the monks for Mid-Day Prayer.

image

image

We walked to the cliff to see the Fraser River. 

image

image

After lunch in MacDonald, we joined the Poor Clare nuns for Mid-Afternoon Prayer.

image

One of the nuns explained their way of life to us.

image

image

Then we visited the Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes, and prayed the Chapel of Divine Mercy there. 

image

image

image

image

Our last stop was St. Joseph’s Parish in Mission.

image

image

There is another little grotto at St. Joseph’s Parish.

image

image

image

I blessed each person with a relic of St. Francis of Assisi. 

image

Back to Vancouver…. we prayed 20 decades of the Rosary on our way to Mission and on our way back to Vancouver. We offered our day of prayer for the Protection of Human Life. 

image

image