Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Now is the Time

I am Stephanie Morris, formerly the Director of Archives of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament and an Associate of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament (ASBS). Sister Annette Marie O’Donnell had begun this blog as “Companions on the Journey” but has retired from actively writing. St. Katharine said we are all typewriters in the hands of the Lord; it has been a pleasure and privilege for me to serve as St. Katharine’s typist for many years.

St. Paul told the Corinthians, “Behold, now is a very acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” (Second letter, 6:2)

Many of us remember the days of “What are you giving up for Lent?” The other side of this question is, “What are you doing for Lent?”  The Church tells us that Prayer, Almsgiving, and Fasting are important pillars of our Lenten practices. St. Katharine would suggest praying the Rosary daily would be a good addition to our prayer life.  For her, the Rosary was “a symbol of love.”

As we approach Holy Week, we might consider the Sorrowful Mysteries.

The Sorrowful Mysteries are these:

1.   The Agony in the Garden. St. Katharine said: “The betrayal of Judas [was] more painful to Our Lord than any other sorrow.”  “An Angel came to comfort Him.” What can we do to comfort Him? How can we show our loyalty to Jesus?

2.   The Scourging at the Pillar: “Jesus has purchased our hearts and affections at the exorbitant price of His Wounds and blood.”  Our forgetting His love or ignoring His will for us reopens these Wounds.

3.   Crowning with Thorns: “Every sin … has been one of these thorns. Try in my Holy Communion to pluck out these thorns one by one considering the love which gave me absolution.”  St. Katharine thanked Jesus “for finding time in the midst of all Thy Sufferings to think of me, and to put fresh heart and Joy into me.”

4.   Jesus Carries His Cross: “It was on His Sacred Shoulders that Jesus bore His Cross, but it was His Heart which accepted it.”  “He sends us a cross; are we working to carry it?” Jesus had help on the path to Calvary; we can be someone else’s help, or we can accept help from another.

5.   Jesus dies on the Cross: St. Katharine prayed: “Teach me, Oh my dear Mother, as I kneel with Thee at the foot of the Cross – teach me the lesson of sacrifice. Let me learn it here at the feet of Jesus crucified.” And again, St. Katharine prayed: “With Mary, I hear my Savior pronounce the sixth word: ‘It is consummated.’ …. All His sufferings are mine. He came into the world to suffer and die – and for me and the salvation of all mankind.”

St. Katharine urged the Sisters to meditate on the Passion. “Why talk of the Passion? The Passion is one of the principle means of sanctity…. It is a gold mine of sanctity.”  The Cross is the “ladder between earth and heaven.”

Saint Katharine’s feast day is March 3rd, a Sunday this year. She would suggest that should remember Christ’s sacrifice first. Then, we can thank Him for the gift of St. Katharine.

May your prayerful Lent bring you a blessed Easter season!

Stephanie Morris, ASBS

February 15, 2024


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