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Celebrating the Feast of St. Alphonsus Liguori, August 1st.

August 1st, Redemptorists worldwide celebrate the feast of St. Alphonsus Liguori, their Founder. We give thanks for him and for the group he gathered around him ono missionary men not long afterwards became officially recognised as The Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer, founded to preach the Gospel to the poor and the most abandoned. Just one year earlier, Sr. Maria Celeste Crostorosa (now Blessed) began the Redemptoristine Nuns, a contemplative Order, known now as The Order of the Most Holy Redeemer’. She and Alphonsus worked closely together in the foundation of both groups.

The Redemptorist Missionary -

Strong in faith, rejoicing in hope, burning with charity, on fire with zeal, in humility of heart and persevering in prayer, Redemptorists as apostolic me and genuine disciples of Saint Alphonsus follow Christ the Redeemer with hearts full of joy; denying themselves and always ready to undertake what is demanding, they share in the mystery of Christ and proclaim it in Gospel simplicity of life and language, that they may bring to people plentiful redemption’  (Redemptorist Constitutions, §20)

ALPHONSUS, A MAN ON FIRE

“Return Love for Love”

is what he said to do.

When all was said and done, this was his heart’s deep cry,-

‘return love, for love’.

Live in the Birth of Bethlehem,

walk in its stables,

smell its smells,

and then

be filled with speechless wonder

at the One Who Is,

and who is lying in the food-trough of

the beasts.

Live in the Call of Calvary,

Come back again to stand

upon that hill,

don’t run away from the awe-filled

horror as you stand

and gaze at our Messiah,-

Sent by the One who so greatly

loved the World.

Live in the shadow of its radiance.

Live in the ever-lasting gift of Eucharist,

Behold the Man! Behold the Lamb!

Behold your God, given in a wafer:

Drink in the meaning of the Cup.

‘Can you drink the cup that I must drink?’  (Mark 10:38-39)

‘We can…’ said those

two Thunder Brothers to their Lord.     (Mark 3:17)

And so can we,- drink of the

overflowing cup of given life.

Return love for love.

‘Live in my love’, said He.

‘As He (my Father) has loved me, (John 15:9)

that is the very how

my love is now

for you!’

Come, live in it, and drink of it,-

Come, laugh and dance in it

with Mary, -who ‘rejoices in God my Saviour’ (Luke 1),-

‘so that your joy may be full’. (John 15:11)

If he has so loved us,-

then we

might live our lives,

returning love for love.

(Séamus Devitt C.Ss.R.)

 

( Memories of visit to Naples-Scala, and of page 47 of Frederick Jones’ book on the writings of Alphonsus Liguori, in Classics of Western Spirituality Series..)

———-

Blessed Maria Celeste Crostorosa, foundress of the Redemptoristines

Both the Redemptoristines and the Redemptorists are constantly praying that young women and young men, in their twenties and older, will come and share the passion in us for people. We want the work of the Most Holy Redeemer to continue into future generations. Talk to any Redemptorist, or contact us at vocations@redemptorists.ie. ‘Every new generation is a continent to be won for Christ!’ (St. John Paul II)

‘The harvest is great, the labourers are few: ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers into his harvest.’

seamus.devitt@redemptorists.ie, Esker Monastery, Athenry.

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Mass in Esker Church – and Live-Streaming of Mass

THE REDEMPTORIST CHURCH IN ESKER HAS RE-OPENED FOR THE CELEBRATION OF THE EUCHARIST.

APOLOGIES FOR NO LIVE-STREAMING MONDAY JULY 20th! – The Operator slipped up!

The Church is open for Mass, then closed for cleaning:

On Weekdays, (Mon-Sat.) the Church is opened from 12 to 2pm, for prayer. 

The Shop is open after the 10am Mass, Monday to Saturday, from 10.30 to 12noon.  

The Mass Schedule is as follows:

MASS  on weekdays, 10am , Monday to Saturday.  (On Saturday, Novena Prayers will be included).

MASS on Sundays, at 8am and 11am.

You are asked to arrive in good time, so that proper protocols may be observed, as required in this time of Covid 19. We appreciate your cooperation in all of this.

There are twenty three (23) spaces in the Church.  This is a relatively small number, but we are conscious of the continuing importance of physical distancing , – two metres at present.

PLEASE BRING A MASK: USING A MASK IS A WAY OF PROTECTING YOURSELF AND PROTECTING OTHERS.

IF YOU ARE ILL IN ANY WAY, OR HAVE A TEMPERATURE, PLEASE DO NOT ATTEND.

Some further news:

LIVE-STREAMING OF MASS DAILY FROM ESKER –  Weekdays at 10am, Sundays at 11am.  WE APOLOGISE THAT WE OCCASIONALLY HAVE SOME TECHNICAL ISSUES REGARDING SOUND:  WE ARE WORKING ON IT! 

From Monday July 6th, Mass will be live-streamed from Esker Church:

Click on the Web-Cam button on the right, to participate in our daily Mass, or click below on churchservices.tv/esker

Live-Streaming:  One giant step for Esker! – one small step for everyone else! – but were getting there. And send us an email to let us know how you find it. Thanks.

SUPPORTING ESKER:  You can now donate securely to the upkeep of our Church and Monastery using a credit card. Simply click on the Donate Now button on this front page,  and choose the amount you want to donate. You will be guided through the steps.

ESKER 2020 ANNUAL NOVENA DATES:  September 1st to 9th, inclusive.  If you can’t come to the Novena, the Novena can come to you! Join us online.   We have not forgotten you, and we hope you will join in with us for this great event.  

Meantime, ESKER CHURCH is open daily, Monday to Saturday, from 12noon to 2pm, for people to visit and pray.  It will be Closed on Sundays, from after the 11am Mass.  Social distancing – 2 metres apart – is to be observed.  Please use the sanitisers that are available

The SHOP is opened now, Monday to Saturday, from 10.30 until 12noon.

The Monastery and the Walks  remain closed until further notice.

The Grounds and the Pitch & Putt Course remain closed until further notice.

REDEMPTORISTINE NUNS in Drumcondra, Dublin:  You can find them on www.rednuns.com, and follow Mass from there, daily, if you wish.

——-

A few images that may lift your hearts:

From the corridor in Esker Monastery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When you cannot receive Holy Communion physically, you can say this prayer of St. Alphonsus Liguori, from his Visits to the Blessed Sacrament:

SPIRITUAL COMMUNION:   ‘ My Jesus, I believe that You art present in the Blessed Sacrament. I love You above all things and I desire You in my soul. Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. As though You were already there, I embrace You and unite myself wholly to You; permit not that I should ever be separated from You.    Amen.

God bless and protect us all, at this time. Go bhfóire Dia orainn ! Dia linn, ló ‘gus oiche!

'The Madonna of Ireland' - in a church in Gyor in Hungary since 1652. Linked to the then-Bishop of Clonfert, Walter Lynch. (Photo adapted by S. Devitt C.Ss.R.)

 

 

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ESKER NOVENA 2020: September 1 to September 9: On-line

Photo of the original Icon in Sant' Alfonso Church, Rome. See larger image, below

DATE FOR YOUR DIARY:ESKER 2020 NOVENA is scheduled for SEPTEMBER 1st to 9th, inclusive, 10am and 8pm each day. It will be on-line.
  
FROM MONDAY JULY 6, JOIN US ONLINE DAILY FOR MASS FROM ESKER CHURCH:
Weekday mornings : 10am
Sunday mornings:     11am.
 
To join us, simply click on WEBCAM/or LIVE-STREAMING button on front page or click below on churchservices.tv/esker

The 'Dominican Window', 1886: 15 years before the Redemptorists came.

A NOVENA PRAYER FOR THIS TIME 

Mother of Perpetual Help, 

with the greatest confidence

we come before your holy picture

to beseech your intercession.

We think of you, Mother, at the foot of the cross.

Your heart must have bled to see your Son in agony.

But your joy was great when he rose from the dead,

victorious over the powers of evil.

Mother of Sorrows, 

pray for us in this time of trial.

Help us not to lose heart.

Intercede for your people who are afflicted with Coronavirus.

Comfort your people who are vulnerable and anxious. 

Protect healthcare workers who put their lives at risk.

Inspire our leaders to make good decisions.

Change our hearts so that we may act responsibly.

Teach us to trust in God’s love and mercy,

And to share with you

the joy of having courageously 

faced up to all the challenges of life. 

Amen.

Photo of the Icon of the Mother of Perpetual Help, Sant' Alphonso, Via Merulana, Rome (Photo: S. Devitt C.Ss.R.)

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When you cannot receive Communion…

The Chapel of the Benedictine Nuns in Kylemore: photo S. Devitt

When you cannot actually receive Holy Communion, you can make a prayer of Spiritual Communion: you can express the longing that is in you to be united completely with Christ.   We can say a prayer of Spiritual Communion, such as this one by St. Alphonsus, founder of the Redemptorists: it’s in his ‘Visits to the Most Blessed Sacrament’:

My Jesus, I believe that You art present in the Blessed Sacrament. I love You above all things and I desire You in my soul. Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. As though You were already there, I embrace You and unite myself wholly to You; permit not that I should ever be separated from You.    Amen.

AS GAEILGE:  ‘A Íosa, mo Thiarna, creidim go bhfuilir i láthair go fíor san Naomh Shacraimint. Gráim Thú os cionn chuile nidh faoin spéir, agus is mian liom go mbeifeá agam istigh i m’anam. Cé nach féidir liom Thú a ghlacadh anois go sacraimintiúil,   ar a laighead tar chugam go spioradálta isteach i mo chroí. Fáiltím romhat amhail is go bhfuilir ann cheanna féin. Agus aontaím mé féin leat go h-iomlán. Ná lig dom go brách a bheith scartha Uait. 

There is a beautiful song on YouTube, ‘There is a longing in my heart, O Lord…’. Listen to it here, and watch the words on screen.

A song that many young people love, ‘All of me loves all of you’ by John Legend, is his own composition to his bride for his wedding day, some few years ago. So many of the words can speak of the Eucharist, as well – words of self-giving, and of mutual love. I often use it with young people, after Holy Communion. ‘I give my all to you, you give your all to me…’  ’All of me loves all of you, all of you loves all of me.’    John Legend produced and played the lead part in ‘Jesus Christ, Superstar’, the show, about two years ago.

Wherever you are, and however you are, you can always walk in the presence of the Lord Jesus. He is the Vine, and we are the Branches… and we are all ‘one person in Christ’! He is within. At any time of day or night, you can go into the room of your heart, close the door, and be with your heavenly Father in that place. God is nearer to us than we are to ourselves.

Séamus Devitt C.Ss.R.

 

 

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