Faith in Action Blog
This Friday, November 30, will mark the first anniversary of the death of Matthew Wise (’06). To pray for the repose of his soul, an alumni priest, Rev. John Tom Mellein, O.P. (’99), will offer a private Mass at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. All who are in the area are invited. The Mass will be held at 8:00 a.m. in Caldwell Chapel.
Please continue to keep Matthew, his family, and his loved ones in prayer throughout the week.
Rose (Teichert) and Dan Grimm (both ’76) have sent along a hopeful report about the health of their daughter Rosie (’10):
Rosie had scans yesterday which showed that one of the tumors in her lungs is gone, the other three have shrunk, and the bad one in her neck seems to be being attacked (as shown by inflammation) in the way we have hoped. We are so grateful, to God and to all of you who are praying. Please keep it up, and we are praying for all of you.
Venerable Fr. Solanus CaseyMichele (Grimm ’81) Loughman, a mother of 10, has been diagnosed with breast cancer. She will be undergoing more tests over the next few days, and she and her husband, Pat (’78), a member of the Greater Los Angeles Board of Regents, will be weighing her options.
The Loughmans invite all to join them in seeking the intercession of Our Lady of Lourdes and Venerable Fr. Solanus Casey. Please keep Michele, her family, and her doctors in your prayers!
Starting tomorrow (Saturday, September 29), EWTN is sponsoring a Novena to the Mother of God for the United States, seeking Our Lady’s intercession and Our Lord’s blessing on the country as we approach the upcoming elections. The novena has the nihil obstat of one of the College's graduates, Rev. Gary Selin (’89), the formation director at St. John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver.
The inspiration for the Novena, says Fr. Selin, came from its author, Rev. Frederick L. Miller, S.T.D., of Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Maryland, who spent last year in sabbatical at St. John Vianney. During that time, the two priests discussed the state of the Church in America, the elections, and what Catholics could do for their country.
“I was concerned, as the year was going on, that we Catholics in the U.S. — starting with us clergy, but also the lay faithful — were not looking at the election enough from the spiritual perspective,” Fr. Selin recalls. From there, he and Fr. Miller thought of the Novena, which, in keeping with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Fortnight for Freedom this summer, would “continue that spirit of prayer and fasting for our country.”
It was important to both priests, says Fr. Selin, that the Novena call upon the aid of the Blessed Mother. “I know from history and my own personal experience,” he notes, citing events from the Battle of Lepanto to the fall of Communism, “that when we invoke the Blessed Virgin Mary in time of great need — when we go to Jesus through Mary — Jesus has come through with very special graces.”
Thus the timing of the Novena to the Mother of God for the United States, which begins on the Feast of the Holy Archangels (September 29), and concludes on the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary (October 7), just prior to the start of the Year of Faith (October 11). “Coming into an election, where so much is on the line for the Catholic Church and for our country with regards to attacks against religious liberty, the attack against the beauty of the Sacrament of Matrimony and even the marital act,” Fr. Selin explains, “we’re callings upon God through the intercession of Mary for very special graces on our country.”
Fr. Selin adds, however, that the act of transforming a nation must begin with our own, interior conversions. “First and foremost in this whole issue of the election, we have to start with ourselves, asking: How have we been faithful to God’s commands? How have we lived a deep prayer life, avoiding sin, growing in holiness and in our dedication to the Holy Eucharist? Then our public acts will be a beautiful overflowing of that commitment of faith.”
Fr. Selin has long had a devotion to the Blessed Mother. His senior thesis at the College was titled, “Mary: Archetype of the Church.” The Mother of God, he says, “has always been close to me in my vocational discernment and leading me here.” Likewise, she must play a role in the future of the nation: “Work has to be done in the public sphere — and that’s the work of the lay faithful to get out there, and we priests have to preach and encourage — but we cannot forget Our Lady.”
An update on Rosie Grimm (’10), courtesy of one of her sisters:
“Please continue to pray for my sister Rosie. She had scans recently. Here’s her Facebook post: ‘Mostly good news: The tumor in my neck is no worse and possibly better, and the tumors in my lungs are either stable or growing pretty slowly. The bad news is that the trial I want to get into has not opened yet, and they aren’t sure when it will open, though hopefully it won’t be too long. Since I’m asymptomatic, we have a little time to play with, but of course I’d like to get start ASAP. So please pray that the approval for the trial comes through quickly.’ She’s heading back East on Monday to get an initial screening for a trial, as a first step. Thanks for your prayers, so much!”
Please continue to keep Rosie and her family in your prayers.
Jesus, I trust in You!
Our Lady, Health of the sick, pray for us.
St. Rita, pray for us.
Blessed John Henry Newman, pray for us.
Blessed Miguel Pro, pray for us.
Bill Dunn (’97) has written to inform us of the death of Paul Meyer (’94):
“I have just learned the sad news that Paul Meyer died recently of a very sudden illness. He had apparently gone to the doctor about three weeks ago after not feeling well, and was sent to the hospital. About a week later he died from a rare and very aggressive form of cancer.…
“Paul and his wife, Kimberlie, were active members of their parish in the diocese of Tulsa, and in recent years they had adopted four children from China in order to provide a Catholic home for them, and also to help promote the culture of life in a country that has state-mandated abortions.
“A group of us in the Tulsa diocese have been organizing a classical studies program for homeschoolers which is to begin this fall, and Paul was going to serve as our math and science teacher. Paul and Kimberly were homeschooling their children while Paul worked as a freelance software engineer and also as a physics teacher at a local college.
“Paul was a kind and humble man, and in his quiet way he radiated a deep and abiding joy which was rooted in his Catholic faith. Paul had a good heart; he loved God above all things, and he always tried to help others to grow closer to God in their own journey through time.”
A full obituary is available on the website of Tulsa’s Fitzgerald Funeral Home.
Please pray the repose of Paul’s soul, and for the consolation and well-being of his wife, Kimberlie, and their four children.
Rosie Grim (’10) reports via Facebook that she is applying to participate in several clinical trials for an anti-cancer drug that is not yet on the market. She may also require another surgery on the tumor in her neck. Still, she says, “I’m feeling fabulous and have started jogging.”
On Wednesday she left with her father and brother for a pilgrimage to Lourdes, England (where she will visit sites related to Bl. John Henry Cardinal Newman), and Cascia (home of her beloved patroness, St. Rita). Please keep their intentions your prayers.
In addition to their prayers to Bl. John Henry, the Grimms have also invited friends to join them in the following devotion to St. Rita:
+Dear Rita, model wife and widow, you yourself suffered in a long illness showing patience out of love for God. Teach us to pray as you did. Many invoke you for help, full of confidence in your intercession. Deign to come now to our aid for the relief and cure of Rosie. To God all things are possible; may this healing give glory to the Lord. Amen.
+Oh ever immaculate Virgin, Mother of Mercy, Health of the Sick, Refuge of Sinners, Comfortess of the Afflicted, you know my wants, my troubles, my sufferings. Look upon me with mercy. When you appeared in the grotto of Lourdes, you made it a privileged sanctuary where you dispense your favors, and where many sufferers have obtained the cure of their infirmities, both spiritual and corporal. I come, therefore, with unbounded confidence to implore your maternal intercession. My loving Mother, obtain my request. I will try to imitate your virtues so that I may one day share your company and bless you in eternity. Amen.
Director of Alumni Relations Mark Kretschmer notified alumni last night that after a week-long search for John Morris (’03), a freshman at the College in 1999-2000, authorities had discovered his body.
Mark asked alumni to “pray for the repose of John’s soul and for the comfort and solace of his family and friends during this very difficult time.” He added that “Rev. Hildebrand Garceau (’78), one of the College’s chaplains, will say a Mass for John next Thursday, June 14 at 5:20 p.m. in the College’s Chapel. Of course, everyone is welcome to attend.”
May his soul, and those of all the faithfully departed, rest in peace.
Director of Alumni Relations Mark Kretschmer has sent out this prayer request for John Morris (’03):
“Please pray for the safety of John Morris ('03) who has been reported missing since May 26. He went missing after spending the day with friends at a baseball game in his home town of Durham, North Carolina. He was going to make a quick stop at the grocery store on his way home, but never came home. His roommate and friends say this is ‘completely out of character’ for John and are very worried about him.”
The alumni of Thomas Aquinas College are joining together to say the following novena to St. Anthony of Padua for for John's return:
O wonderful St. Anthony, glorious on account of the fame of your miracles, and through the condescension of Jesus in coming in the form of a little child to rest in your arms, obtain for me of His bounty the grace which I ardently desire from the depths of my heart. For the safe return of John Morris:
You who were so compassionate toward miserable sinners, regard not the unworthiness of those who pray to you, but the glory of God that it may once again be magnified by the granting of the particular request: for the safe return of John Morris, which I now ask for with persevering earnestness. Amen
Pray one Our Father, one Hail Mary, and one Glory Be in honor of Saint Anthony.
Saint Anthony, pray for us!Read more
After a long struggle with cancer, Mary Kathleen Lear (Katie) Gates — mother of Nora (Bulcher ’04) and mother-in-law of Peter Bulcher (’05) and tutor John Baer — died this past Saturday. A mother of 8 children and the grandmother of 29, Mrs. Gates was a pioneer in homeschooling and a member of several choirs. Her complete obituary is available via the Ventura County Star.
A rosary for Mrs. Gates will be held on Friday, June 8, at 7 p.m. at St. Sebastian Church, 235 N. Ninth Street in Santa Paula, Calif. A funeral will be held on Saturday, June 9, at 10:30 a.m., also at St. Sebastian. Interment will follow at Santa Paula Cemetery.
Please pray for the repose of Mrs. Gates' soul and the consolation of her family.