Missionary Priests of the Blessed Sacrament
P.O. Box 1428 • Bensalem, Pa 19020
Tel: 215.244.9211 • Fax: 215.244.9211
Email: apea@webtv.net

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"They took the body of Jesus and bound it with burial clothes along with the spices".           John 19:40

In the place where he had been crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had yet been buried. So they laid Jesus there. John 19:41,42



Summer/Fall 2012



Vol. 27, No. 1

Two New American Saints

On October 21, Pope Benedict XVI canonized two American women, a German immigrant and a native American. Saint Marianne Cope (Barbara Koob) was born in Germany on January 23, 1838, a year before her family immigrated to the United States. Barbara grew up in West Utica, NY. In 1862 she joined the Sisters of St. Francis and took the religious name Marianne. In the years that followed, she taught school and worked at parishes in central New York State and helped found St. Elizabeth Hospital in Utica and St. Joseph Hospital in Syracuse. She was elected the second mother superior of the Syracuse-based religious community. In 1883 she responded to an appeal for volunteers to care for leprosy patients in the Hawaiian Islands. Mother Marianne called her sisters together and told them of the request and of the details of working with this dreaded illness. More than thirty-five of them volunteered at once. Of those six were chosen. Mother Marianne decided to accompany the six sisters to Hawaii, get them settled, and then return to Syracuse. However, she never returned to Syracuse. Seeing the great need, she decided to stay. She worked with Father (now Saint) Damien DeVeuster at the leper colony on the island of Molokai for several months before his death in 1889 and continued his work there afterwards. After serving the lepers for thirty years, she died on August 19, 1918 at the age of 80. Her feast day is January 23.

      Saint Kateri Tekakwitha was born in 1656 in the village of Ossernenon (near Auriesville, NY) in 1656. Her father was a Mohawk chief and her mother a Catholic Algonquin. (She received her Christian name Kateri, which is Iroquois for Catherine, when she was baptized at the age of twenty.) When Tekakwitha was four years old smallpox raged through her village, killing her parents and baby brother. It left her weakened, scarred and partially blind. She was then adopted by two aunts and an uncle. When Tekakwitha was eighteen, a Jesuit missionary, Father Jacques de Lamberville, established a chapel in her village. She was fascinated with his stories about Jesus Christ, which vaguely recalled to her the simple Catholic piety of her mother. She received instructions from the priest and was baptized. Her family and the villagers did not accept her conversion, and she became the village outcast. She was taunted and threatened with torture and death if she did not renounce her religion. Because of the increasing hostility from her people and because she wanted to devote her life to working for God, Kateri left her village and fled more than 200 miles to the Catholic mission of St. Francis Xavier near Montreal. The journey through the wilderness took more than two months. There she received her First Holy Communion on Christmas Day, 1677. She led a life there of prayer, penance and good works, teaching the young and caring for the poor and sick. She spent hours in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament, kneeling on the cold chapel floor. She loved praying the Rosary and carried it around her neck always. On March 25, 1679, Kateri made a vow of perpetual virginity and devoted her life totally to Christ. Her poor health plagued her throughout her life and led to her death on April 17, 1680 at the age of 24. Her last words were, “Jesus, I love you.” Moments after her death her scarred and disfigured face cleared up and became beautiful, a miracle witnessed by many. Kateri is known as “Lily of the Mohawks.” Her feast day is July 14.

 

Home Parish of Marianne Cope Celebrates 20 Years of PEA

St. Joseph-St. Patrick parish in Utica, NY, the home parish of newly canonized Saint Marianne Cope, celebrated its 20th anniversary of perpetual adoration on March 4 of this year. St. Marianne, (then Barbara Koob) was educated at St. Joseph School and was a parishioner of St. Joseph Church (now St. Joseph-St. Patrick) until she joined the Sisters of St. Francis. St. Joseph-St. Patrick parish is special to Fr. Victor Warkulwiz of APEA because it the first parish in which he helped to start perpetual Eucharistic adoration. And it was a challenging assignment for the newly ordained priest. First of all, it was a small parish, only about 400 families. Also, being Father’s first assignment, he had not yet mastered the homily. In addition, work was going on in the church. One of the large stained-glass windows was taken out for repairs, and the opening was covered with a plastic tarp. It was windy outside, and the wind kept flapping the tarp, making a lot of noise. As if that wasn’t enough distraction, the PA system was intermittent and noisy. As a result, few people in the cavernous church were able to hear Fr. Victor’s homily clearly, and only about 100 people signed up, not near enough to start 24/7 adoration, which was the goal. But this did not deter Betty Frank, the devoted and persistent mover behind the whole effort. She and Marianne Cope, whose intercession she invoked, were determined to start perpetual Eucharistic adoration at the parish. Betty patiently recruited people from neighboring parishes until there were enough adorers to start perpetual adoration. The parish finally started full 24/7 perpetual adoration on March 4, 1992, three months after Fr. Victor’s visit. And it has been going strong ever since, accumulating 175,200 hours of adoration over the 20 years, thanks to the devotion and commitment of the adorers and coordinators, especially Betty and her successor as head coordinator, Rose Marie Roberts. Praise God for this great blessing He has bestowed on Saint Marianne Cope’s home parish!

APEA Visits EWTN

Msgr. Anthony F. Wassel and Fr. Victor P. Warkulwiz, M.S.S. were guests on EWTN Live with Fr. Mitch Pacwa on his April 18 show. Msgr. Wassel is a long-time friend of APEA. He is the retired pastor of St. Joseph parish (now Blessed Teresa of Calcutta parish) in Mahanoy City, PA. He served there for 42 years and had perpetual Eucharistic adoration in the chapel there for 27 years when he retired; and it continues on today. For those 27 years he advertised perpetual adoration at St. Joseph’s on a large billboard along the highway entering Mahanoy City. The chapel has been a great blessing to the community.

      Fr. Pacwa opened the interview by recalling Bl. John Paul II’s remark that Eucharistic adoration can radically transform the world. Msgr. Wassel stated that he started perpetual adoration at St. Joseph’s in 1982, and that when he started it his priest friends said it would not last a week. But they were wrong. It has lasted thirty years so far. Msgr. Wassel further pointed out that the Eucharist is God’s greatest gift to us. When Mother Teresa of Calcutta visited his parish, she said that greatest blessing to Mahanoy city was perpetual adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Fr. Victor made the point that the Eucharist is a threefold sacrament: a sacrament of sacrifice, of communion, and of presence. Various things were discussed about perpetual adoration, including both the practical and the spiritual. Getting perpetual adoration started in a parish and how to make a holy hour were among the topics covered. The blessings of perpetual adoration, especially the nurturing of vacations to the priesthood, the religious life, and marriage were mentioned. Finally, in the question and answer segment, the topics of home adoration via computer and the decline of Eucharistic adoration and Benediction after Vatican II and their restoration were among the things discussed. Fr. Pacwa mentioned that the workers at EWTN make an weekly hour in the chapel there. He attributed the continuing success of EWTN to that practice. Msgr. Wassel and Fr. Victor also were blessed by making a visit to the Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville, AL, thanks to the hospitality of Jim and Louise Hunt, friends of APEA who live in Alabama near EWTN.
 

Perpetual Adoration Cultivates Vocations at Benedictine College

A recent EWTN News report stated that seven women who attended Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas recently took their final vows with the Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George. The community was founded in 1869, and its sisters serve the poor and needy on five continents. The order currently has some 1600 members, who offer healthcare, childcare, and education to those in need. The seven sisters from Benedictine College were members of the classes of 2005-2011. Graduates from the 2012 class are currently serving the Church in various lay religious ministries throughout the country. Other recent graduates have entered seminaries in Atlanta, Georgia and Tulsa. Since the year 2000, nearly 90 Benedictine alumni have pursued vocations to the priesthood or religious life. Benedictine College is a vibrant, orthodox, genuine Catholic college, loyal to the Church’s tradition. It is one of the colleges recommended by the Cardinal Newman Society, an organization that advocates a return to orthodoxy and Catholic identity in Catholic education. It is included in the Society’s guidebook entitled Choosing a Catholic College: What to Look For and Where to Find It.

      APEA was privileged to help start perpetual Eucharistic adoration in 1999 at the Benedictine parish, St. Benedict’s, a block or so from the campus. The pastor, Fr. Gerard Senecal, O.S.B., says that the chapel is nearly always filled with students during the school year, and that many vocations were nurtured there.

Our Lady of the Gulf Adoration Chapel Prayer

Dear Lord, I come to this quiet place
to find you for a moment in this space.
I bring to you my burdens to share
because I know you are the one to care.

I drop in here, away from the mad rush
for a few moments, my mind to hush.
I may sit as my mind may wander,
hopefully, to you who are yonder.

May I block out the noise outside
as I reflect on your murmurings inside,
hoping to find the solace I yearn for here,
knowing that, to you, I am very dear.

I may sit and gaze at the monstrance,
allowing you to place me in your loving glance
as you nourish my mind and soul
while drawing me closer to my eternal goal.

And when it is time to leave,
You will keep tugging at my sleeve,
inviting me to come back again and again
to be continually affirmed in your love, Amen.

© Fr. Michael Tracey, Pastor, Bay St. Louis, MS

APEA Activity in 2011

In 2011 the priests of the Apostolate for Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration visited the following parishes to help start or maintain perpetual Eucharistic adoration (or as close to it as possible):

St. Joseph, Williston, ND; Ascension, Hurricane WV; Holy Ghost, Tiverton, RI; St. Mark, Huntersville, NC; St. Cecilia, Harvey, ND; St. Patrick, Imogene, IA; St. Francis de Assisi, Rancho de Taos, NM; Our Lady of Guadalupe, Taos, NM; St. Vincent de Paul, Vestal, NY; Blessed Sacrament, Johnson City, NY; Ss. Cyril & St Methodius, Binghamton, NY; Holy Trinity, Binghamton NY; Assumption, Eden Valley, MN; Most Holy Name of Jesus, Gulfport, FL; St. Patrick, Elmira, NY; St. Anastasia, Fort Pierce, FL; St. Pius X, Lafayette LA; St. John the Evangelist, Warrenton, VA; St. Mary, New Ulm, MN; St. Mary, Waverly, MN; Holy Rosary, St. Mary's, OH; Most Holy Trinity, Phoenix, AZ; Sacred Heart, Royersford, PA; St. Bernard, Stewartville, MN; St. Matthew, Gillette, WY; All Saints, Mesa, AZ; St. Joseph, Tontitown, AR; St. Mark, St. Paul, MN; Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, New Ulm, MN; St. Mary of Czestochowa, Delano, MN; Holy Trinity, Winsted, MN; St. John, Cokato (Darwin), MN; St. Bridget, Rochester, MN; St. Peter, De Land, FL; Nativity BVM, Media, PA; Assumption BVM, Jacksonville, FL; St. Thomas Aquinas, Rio Rancho, NM; St. John, Orange, NJ; St. Albert, Albertville, MN; St. Michael, St. Michael, MN.

A Eucharistic Conversion Story

The priests of APEA in their travels hear many stories of Eucharistic miracles. Here is one: A perpetual adoration adorer in a parish told the story of her conversion to the Catholic faith. She said that she had been raised without any religion. She grew up indifferent to religion, but she was not anti-religious. She had a close friend who was a devout Catholic. One day they were on a trip together. Her friend had to first stop off at her parish to take care of some business in the office. While her friend took care of her business, the lady decided to take a tour of the parish campus. She noticed people going in and out of a building and became curious about what was going on there. So she went over to the building, opened the door, and was immediately overwhelmed with a powerful sense of the presence of God. The building she entered was a perpetual adoration chapel. She had no knowledge whatsoever of Catholic belief in the Eucharist and was quite puzzled by the experience. She told her friend what had happened, and her friend explained to her about the chapel. This incident led to her conversion to the Catholic faith and to eventually becoming the head coordinator for perpetual adoration at her parish.