Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Mon, Nov 19, 2012 - Litany Lane Blog: Monk, Revelation 1:1-4; 2:1-5, Psalms 1:1-4, 6, Luke 18:35-43, St. Rafał Kalinowski, Wadowice Poland

Monday, November 19, 2012 - Litany Lane Blog:

Monk, Revelation 1:1-4; 2:1-5, Psalms 1:1-4, 6, Luke 18:35-43, St. Rafał Kalinowski, Wadowice Poland

Good Day Bloggers! 
Wishing everyone a Blessed Week!
Year of Faith - October 11, 2012 - November 24, 2013

P.U.S.H. (Pray Until Serenity Happens). It has a remarkable way of producing solace, peace, patience and tranquility and of course resolution...God's always available 24/7.

We are all human. We all experience birth, life and death. We all have flaws but we also all have the gift knowledge and free will as well, make the most of it. Life on earth is a stepping to our eternal home in Heaven. Its your choice whether to rise towards eternal light or lost to eternal darkness. Material items, though needed for sustenance and survival on earth are of earthly value only. The only thing that passes from this earth to Purgatory and/or Heaven is our Soul, our Spirit...it's God's perpetual gift to us...Embrace it, treasure it, nurture it, protect it...

"Raise not a hand to another unless it is to offer in peace and goodwill." ~ Zarya Parx 2012


November 02, 2012 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:

"Dear children, as a mother I implore you to persevere as my apostles. I am praying to my Son to give you Divine wisdom and strength. I am praying that you may discern everything around you according to God’s truth and to strongly resist everything that wants to distance you from my Son. I am praying that you may witness the love of the Heavenly Father according to my Son. My children, great grace has been given to you to be witnesses of God’s love. Do not take the given responsibility lightly. Do not sadden my motherly heart. As a mother I desire to rely on my children, on my apostles. Through fasting and prayer you are opening the way for me to pray to my Son for Him to be beside you and for His name to be holy through you. Pray for the shepherds because none of this would be possible without them. Thank you."

October 25, 2012 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:

"Dear children! Today I call you to pray for my intentions. Renew fasting and prayer because Satan is cunning and attracts many hearts to sin and perdition. I call you, little children, to holiness and to live in grace. Adore my Son so that He may fill you with His peace and love for which you yearn. Thank you for having responded to my call." ~ Blessed Virgin Mary


Today's Word:  monk  monk  [muhngk]

Origin:  before 900; Middle English; Old English munuc  < Late Latin monachus  < Greek monachós  hermit, noun use of adj.: solitary, equivalent to món ( os ) alone + -achos  adj. suffix

1. (in Christianity) a man who has withdrawn from the world for religious reasons, especially as a member of an order of cenobites living according to a particular rule and under vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience.
2. (in any religion) a man who is a member of a monastic order: a Buddhist monk.
3. Printing . a dark area on a printed page caused by uneven inking of the plate or type. Compare friar


Today's Old Testament Reading -  Psalms 1:1-4, 6

1 How blessed is anyone who rejects the advice of the wicked and does not take a stand in the path that sinners tread, nor a seat in company with cynics,
2 but who delights in the law of Yahweh and murmurs his law day and night.
3 Such a one is like a tree planted near streams; it bears fruit in season and its leaves never wither, and every project succeeds.
4 How different the wicked, how different! Just like chaff blown around by the wind
6 For Yahweh watches over the path of the upright, but the path of the wicked is doomed


Today's Epistle -  Revelation 1:1-4; 2:1-5

1 A revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him so that he could tell his servants what is now to take place very soon; he sent his angel to make it known to his servant John,
2 and John has borne witness to the Word of God and to the witness of Jesus Christ, everything that he saw.
3 Blessed is anyone who reads the words of this prophecy, and blessed those who hear them, if they treasure the content, because the Time is near.
4 John, to the seven churches of Asia: grace and peace to you from him who is, who was, and who is to come, from the seven spirits who are before his throne,
1 'Write to the angel of the church in Ephesus and say, "Here is the message of the one who holds the seven stars in his right hand and who lives among the seven golden lamp-stands:
2 I know your activities, your hard work and your perseverance. I know you cannot stand wicked people, and how you put to the test those who were self-styled apostles, and found them false.
3 I know too that you have perseverance, and have suffered for my name without growing tired.
4 Nevertheless, I have this complaint to make: you have less love now than formerly.
5 Think where you were before you fell; repent, and behave as you did at first, or else, if you will not repent, I shall come to you and take your lamp-stand from its place.


Today's Gospel Reading - Luke 18:35-43

Now it happened that as Jesus drew near to Jericho there was a blind man sitting at the side of the road begging. When he heard the crowd going past he asked what it was all about, and they told him that Jesus the Nazarene was passing by. So he called out, 'Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me.' The people in front scolded him and told him to keep quiet, but he only shouted all the louder, 'Son of David, have pity on me.' Jesus stopped and ordered them to bring the man to him, and when he came up, asked him, 'What do you want me to do for you?' 'Sir,' he replied, 'let me see again.' Jesus said to him, 'Receive your sight. Your faith has saved you.' And instantly his sight returned and he followed him praising God, and all the people who saw it gave praise to God.
• The Gospel today describes the arrival of Jesus to Jericho. It is the last stop before going up to Jerusalem, where the “Exodus” of Jesus will take place, according to what he announced in his Transfiguration (Lk 9, 31) and along the way up to Jerusalem (Lk 9, 44; 18, 31-33).

• Luke 18, 35-37: The blind man sitting on the side of the road. “Now it happened that as Jesus drew near to Jericho, there was a blind man sitting on the side of the road begging. When he heard the crowd going past he asked what it was all about. They told him that Jesus the Nazarene was passing by”. In the Gospel of Mark, the blind man is called Bartimaeus (Mk 10, 46). Since he was blind, he could not participate in the procession which accompanied Jesus. At that time, there were many blind people in Palestine, because the strong sun which hit the whitened rocky earth hurt the eyes which were not protected.

• Luke 18, 38-39: The cry of the blind man and the reaction of the people. “Then he began to cry out: Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me!” He calls Jesus using the title “Son of David”. The catechism of that time taught that the Messiah would be of the descent of David, “Son of David”, a glorious Messiah. Jesus did not like this title. In quoting the Messianic Psalm, he asks himself: “How is it that the Messiah can be the son of David if even David calls him “My Lord?” (Lk 20, 41-44) The cry of the blind man bothers the people who accompany Jesus. Because of this, “The people in front scolded him and told him to keep quiet. They tried to stop him but he only shouted all the louder, Son of David have pity on me!” Even up to our time the cry of the poor bothers the established society: migrants, beggars, refugees, sick with AIDS, and so many!

• Luke 18, 40-41: The reaction of Jesus before the cry of the blind man. And what does Jesus do? “Jesus stopped and ordered them to bring the man to him”. Those who wanted to stop the blind man from shouting because this bothered them, now asked by Jesus, are obliged to help the poor man to get to Jesus. The Gospel of Mark adds that the blind man left everything and went to Jesus. He did not have too much; only his mantle. That is what he possessed to cover his body (cf. Es 22, ­25-26). That was his security! That was his land! Today, also, Jesus listens to the cry of the poor which, we, many times do not want to hear. “When he came up to Jesus, he asked him: What do you want me to do for you?” It is not sufficient to shout or cry out, it is necessary to know why he is shouting! The blind man answers: “Lord that I may see again”.

• Luke 18, 42-43: Go! Your faith has saved you! “And Jesus says: Receive your sight. Your faith has saved you“. Immediately he recovered his sight and began to follow Jesus praising God. And all the people, when they saw that, praised God.” The blind man had called Jesus with an idea which was not totally correct, because the title “Son of David” was not completely correct. But he had greater faith in Jesus than in his ideas about Jesus. He did not demand anything like Peter did (Mk 8, 32-33). He knew how to give his life accepting Jesus without imposing any conditions. Healing is the fruit of his faith in Jesus. Once he was cured, he follows Jesus and walks along with Him toward Jerusalem. In this way he becomes a model disciple for all of us who want “to follow Jesus along the road” toward Jerusalem: to believe more in Jesus and not so much in our ideas about Jesus! In this decision to walk with Jesus is found the source of courage and the seed of the victory on the cross. Because the cross is not something fatal, but it is an experience of God. It is the consequence of the commitment of Jesus, in obedience to the Father, to serve the brothers and not to accept privileges!

• Faith is a force which transforms the person. The Good News of the Kingdom announced by Jesus was a sort of fertilizer. It made the seed of life hidden in people to grow; that seed hidden like the fire under the ashes of observance without life. Jesus blew on the ashes and the fire lit up. The Kingdom appears and the people rejoice. The condition was always the same: to believe in Jesus. The cure of the blind man clarifies a very important aspect of our faith. Even calling Jesus with ideas which are not completely correct, the blind man had faith and he was cured. He was converted; he left everything behind and followed Jesus along the road toward Calvary! The full understanding of the following of Jesus is not obtained from a theoretical instruction, but rather from a practical commitment, walking together with Him along the way of service, from Galilee to Jerusalem. Anyone who insists in keeping the idea of Peter, that is, of the glorious Messiah without a cross, will understand nothing of Jesus and will not succeed in attaining the attitude of a true disciple of Jesus. Anyone who knows how to believe in Jesus and gives himself (Lk 9, 23-24), anyone who knows how to accept to be last (Lk 22, 26), who knows how to drink the chalice and to carry his/her own cross (Mt 20, 22; Mk 10, 38), this one, like the blind man, even not having ideas completely correct, will succeed “to follow Jesus along the way” (Lk 18, 43). In this certainty of walking together with Jesus is found the source of courage and the seed of victory on the cross.
Personal questions
• How do I see and hear the cry of the poor: migrants, Negroes, sick of AIDS, beggars, refugees, and so many others?
• How is my faith: am I more fixed on my ideas about Jesus or on Jesus?

Reference: Courtesy of Order of Carmelites, www.ocarm.org.


Featured Item of the Day from Litany Lane


Saint of the Day:  Saint Rafał Kalinowski

Feast Day:  November 19
Patron Saint

St Rafal Kalinowski
Rafał Kalinowski, O.C.D. (Polish: Józef Kalinowski, Lithuanian: Rapolas Kalinauskas) (1 September 1835 – 15 November 1907) was a Polish Discalced Carmelite friar born as Józef Kalinowski inside the Russian partition of Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, in the city of Vilnius (Pl: Wilno; Ru: Вильнюс). He was a teacher, engineer, prisoner of war, royal tutor, and priest, who founded many monasteries around Poland after the suppression by the Russians. He was canonized by Pope John Paul II in 1991, the first man to be so recognized in the order of the Discalced Carmelites since Saint John of the Cross.


He was born as Józef to a noble "szlachta" family in the city of Vilnius (Wilno). At the time he was born, the area was known as a Russian partition, though it had formerly been part of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. He was the second son of Andrew Kalinowski (1805–1878), an assistant superintendent professor of mathematics at the local Institute for Nobles (Instytut Szlachecki). His mother, Josephine Połońska, died a few months after he was born, leaving him and his older brother Victor without a mother. His father then married Josephine's sister (a practice that was not uncommon in that time), Sophie Połońska, and had three more children: Charles, Emily, and Gabriel. After Sophie died in 1845, Andrew married again, this time to the 17-year-old Sophie Puttkamer, daughter of Maryła Wereszczak (famous at the time for being written about by Adam Mickiewicz), who became mother to all of Andrew's existing children and had four more of her own: Mary, Alexander, Monica, and George. From the age of 8, Kalinowski attended the Institute for Nobles at Vilna, and graduated with honors in 1850. He next attended the School of Agriculture (Instytut Agronomiczny) at Hory-Horki, near Orsha.

Military career

Choice of colleges was strictly limited by the Russians, so in 1853 he enlisted in the Russian Army and entered the Nicholayev Engineering Academy (Mikołajewska Szkoła Inżynierii). He was promoted to Second Lieutenant in 1856. In 1857 he worked as an associate professor of mathematics, and from 1858-1860 he worked as an engineer who helped design the Odessa/Kiev/Kursk portion of the Trans-Siberian railway.

In 1862 he was promoted to Captain, but he resigned from the Russian Army in 1863 and became Minister of War during the Polish insurrection known as the January Uprising. On 24 March 1864 he was arrested and condemned to death by firing squad, but his family intervened and the sentence was changed to 10 years in a Siberian labor camp. He was forced to trek overland to the salt mines of Usole, near Irkutsk, Siberia, a journey that took nine months.

Three years after arriving in Usole he was allowed to move to Irkutsk. From 1871-1872 he did meteorological research for the Siberian section of the Russian Geographical Company. He also participated in Benedict Dybowski's research expedition to Kultuk at Baikal.

Royal tutor

He returned to Warsaw in 1874, and became a tutor to 16-year-old Prince August Czartoryski. August was diagnosed with tuberculosis in 1876, and Kalinowski accompanied him to various health destinations in France, Switzerland, Italy, and Poland.[1] Kalinowski was a major influence on the young man (known as "Gucio"), who later became a priest and was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 2004.

Carmelite priest

In 1877 Kalinowski joined the Carmel of Linz, and took the name "Brother Raphael of St. Joseph." The name "of St. Joseph" had nothing to do with his birthname—it was common for many Carmelites to list their name as "of St. Joseph", after the "Convent of St. Joseph" founded by Teresa of Avila, co-founder of the Discalced Carmelite Order.

Kalinowski was ordained as priest at Czerna in 1882 by Bishop Albin Dunajewski, and in 1883 he became Prior of the convent at Czerna. He founded multiple Catholic organizations around Poland and the Ukraine, most prominent of which was a monastery in Wadowice, Poland, where he was also Prior. He founded a Carmelite Sisters convent in Przemyśl in 1884, and Lvov in 1888.

From 1892-1907 he worked to document the life and work of Mother Theresa Marchocka, a 17th century Discalced Carmelite, to assist with her beatification. He died in Wadowice of tuberculosis in 1907. Fourteen years later, Karol Wojtyła, later known as Pope John Paul II, was born in the same town. He was a noted spiritual director of both Catholic and Russian Orthodox faithful.


Monastery of Discalced Carmelites in Czerna, Poland
Kalinowski's remains were originally kept in the convent cemetery, but this proved unmanageable because of the large number of pilgrims who came visiting. So many of them took handfuls of dirt from the grave that the nuns had to keep replacing the earth and plants at the cemetery. His body was later moved to a tomb, but the pilgrims went there instead, often scratching with their hands at the plaster, just to have some relic to keep with them. His remains were then moved to a chapel in Czerna, where they remain.

Father Rafał was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1983 in Kraków, in front of a crowd of over two million people. On 17 November 1991, he was canonized when, in St. Peter's Basilica, Pope John Paul II declared his boyhood hero a Saint. Rafał was the first friar to have been canonized in the Order of the Discalced Carmelites since co-founder Saint John of the Cross (1542–1591). His feast day is 19 November.

Literary works

  • Carmelite Chronicles of the monasteries and convents of Vilnius, Warsaw, Leopolis, and Kraków
  • Translated into Polish the autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux, The Story of a Soul
  • Wrote biography of Hermann Cohen (a famous Jewish pianist, who had converted to the Carmelite Order and become "Father Augustine Mary of the Blessed Sacrament")
  • Kalinowski, Rafal, Czesc Matki Bozej w Karmelu Polskim, in Ksiega Pamiatkowa Marianska, Lwów-Warszawa 1905, vol. 1, part II, pp 403–421
  • Kalinowski, J. Wspomnienia 1805-1887 (Memoirs 1805-1887), ed. R. Bender, Lublin 1965
  • Kalinowski, Jozef, Listy (Letters), ed. Czeslaus Gil, vol. I, Lublin 1978, vol II, Kraków 1986-1987
  • Kalinowski, Rafal, Swietymi badzcie. Konferencje i teksty ascetyczne, ed. Czeslaus Gil, Kraków 1987


    • Biography by Eileen Ahern, OCDS
    • Elonka's family: Pics and info about Saint Raphael - a biographical page by his great-great-grandniece, with references to several published biographies
    • (Polish) Polish-language page about Saint Raphael with many pictures
    • (Italian) Beatification of Father Raphael Kalinowski and Brother Albert Chmielowski in Krakow (June 22, 1983)
    • Praskiewicz, Szczepan, Saint Raphael Kalinowski: an Introduction to His Life and Spirituality, 1998, ICS Publications, ISBN 0-935216-53-7
    • Blessed Raphael Kalinowski of Saint Joseph, His Life in Pictures, 1983, Rome, Postulation General
    • Gil, Czeslaus, OCD, Rafał Kalinowski
    • Monk Matthew, Saint from the Salt Mines, 1986, Mid-Suffolk Printing Company, distributed by Carmelite Book Service, Oxford
    • Sokol, Stanley (1992). The Polish Biographical Dictionary. United States: Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers. ISBN 0-86516-245-X.
    • "Miracle Clears Way for Sainthood Cause." The Catholic Sun, July 19, 1990


    Featured Items Panel from Litany Lane


    Today's  Snippet  I:  Wadowice, Poland

    Pope John Paul II Square
    Wadowice [vadɔˈvit​͡sɛ] is a city in southern Poland, 50 km from Kraków with 19,200 inhabitants (2006), situated on the Skawa river, confluence of Vistula, in the eastern part of Silesian Foothills (Pogórze Śląskie). Wadowice is best known for being the birthplace of Pope John Paul II.

    The first permanent settlement in the area of today's Wadowice was founded in late 10th century or early 11th century. According to a local legend, the town was founded by certain ‘Wad’ or ‘Wład’, a short form for the Slavic name of Ladislaus (Polish: ‘Władysław’). The town was first mentioned as Wadowicze in St. Peter penny register in years 1325–1327. In 1327 it is also mentioned (under the same name) in a fief registry sent from prince John I Scholastyk of Oświęcim to Bohemian king John I, Count of Luxemburg. At this time it was a trading settlement belonging to the Dukes of Silesia of the Piast Dynasty, and according to some historians it was already a municipality. In 1430 a great fire destroyed the town. It was soon rebuilt and granted city rights, along with a city charter and a self-government, based on the then-popular Kulm law. The privileges, granted by Prince Kazimierz I of Oświęcim led to a period of fast reconstruction and growth.

    The administrative division of the region in the times of regional division was complicated. Initially, between 1313/1317 and 1445, Wadowice belonged to the Silesian Duchy of Oświęcim and after 1445 to the Duchy of Zator. In 1482 Władysław I of Zator inherited only half of his father's lands and created a separate Duchy of Wadowice, which lasted until his death in 1493. The following year his brother and successor, Jan V of Zator abdicated. At the same time the land was subject to Bohemian overlordship, which lasted until the following year, when the Duchy was bought by the Kings of Poland and incorporated as a Silesian County. Finally, the County was incorporated into the Kraków Voivodeship in 1564.

    Marcin Wadowita, Deacon Krakow Academy
    In the 16th-17th centuries Wadowice was a regional centre of crafts and trade. Among the most notable sons of the town was Marcin Wadowita, a theologian, philosopher and a deacon of the Kraków Academy. He was also the founder of a hospital and a basic school in Wadowice. However, several plagues and fires halted the prosperity and the town's growth was eventually halted as well.

    In the effect of the 1st Partition of Poland, Wadowice was annexed by Austria, incorporated into the newly-established Kingdom of Galicia, under direct Austrian rule, and renamed Frauenstadt. The town's growth started soon afterwards, after a road linking Vienna with Lwów was built. The town became a seat of a communal administration and since 1867 - a county site. Small industries were developing slowly during the 19th century. New inhabitants settled in the area, attracted by the industry, new military barracks and various administrative institutions. In addition, a new hospital and a regional court were erected in the town centre. Finally, in the last 25 years of the 19th century partial liberalisation of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy led to creation of various Polish cultural and scientific societies.

    After the World War I and the dissolution of the monarchy, Wadowice became part of the newly-reborn Poland. The seat of a powiat remained in the town and in 1919 the inhabitants of the area formed the 12th Infantry Regiment that took part in the Polish-Bolshevik War of 1919–1920.

    Pope John Paul II Family Home
    In 1920 Karol Wojtyła was born in Wadowice (later known as the bishop of Kraków and Pope John Paul II).

    After the Polish Defensive War of 1939, Germany occupied the area and on October 26 Wadowice was annexed by Nazi Germany. On December 29 of the same year the town was renamed to Wadowitz. Initially the Polish intelligentsia was targeted by harsh German racial and cultural policies and hundreds of people from the area, most notably priests, teachers and artists, were murdered in mass executions. Hundreds more were expelled and resettled to the General Government in order to make place for German settlers. Between 1941 and 1943 a ghetto was established in the city. 

    Almost the entire local Jewish population (more than 2,000) was exterminated, mostly in the nearby Auschwitz concentration camp. In addition, the Germans set up a POW camp for Allied soldiers and a penal camp that served as a transfer camp for various German concentration camps. Despite German terror, the Home Army units were active in the area, most notably in the town itself and in the Beskid mountains to the south of it.

    Virgin Mary's Offertory minor basilica
    After the war, in 1945 Wadowice retained its powiat town status and until 1975 served as a notable centre of commerce and transport in the Kraków Voivodeship. 

    After that the town was transferred to the newly-created Bielsko-Biała Voivodeship. After the peaceful transformation of the political and economical system in Poland (in 1989), most of the local industry was found inefficient and went bankrupt. 

    However, the ecological and historical heritage of the area as well as its status as the birthplace of Pope John Paul II led to fast growth of tourism. Currently more than 200,000 people visit Wadowice every year and this number is rising.

    Wadowice is today mainly a centre for tourism and sightseeing, but also a place for small industries such as the production of machines and construction materials. There is also the headquarters of the biggest juice-maker of Poland - Maspex - and the shoe producer - Badura.

    Culture and sightseeing

    • Days of Wadowice (Dni Wadowic) are held every May–June. The feast starts every May 18 to commemorate the birth of Karol Wojtyła.
    • Museum of the Holy Father Family Home in the family home of Pope John Paul II collects objects that belonged to Karol Wojtyła and his family.
    • Parochial church - the Virgin Mary's Offertory minor basilica–15th century, rebuilt in 18th century.
    • Kościelna 4 street, an 18th-century house.
    • Neo-Classical "Mikołaj" manor - 19th century, named after the mayor Mikołaj Komorowski.
    • Municipal Museum of Marcin Wadowita.
    • Pope John Paul II square with 19th-century burgher houses.
    • Monument to Emil Zegadłowicz, a writer who described the area of Wadowice in many of his books

    Notable people

    • Karol Wojtyła (1920–2005), Polish priest and bishop of Kraków, 1978-2005 as Pope John Paul II
    • Marcin Wadowita Martinus Vadovius Campinus (born 1567), Polish theologian, philosopher and deacon of the Kraków Academy
    • Godwin Brumowski (1889–1936), Austro-Hungarian WWI fighter ace and air general
    • Saint Raphael Kalinowski (b. 1835, Vilna; d. 1906, Wadowice), founder of Wadowice college, seminary, church, monastery, and convent
    • Ada Sari (29 June 1886 - 12 July 1968) was a famous Polish opera singer, actress.


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