EMY – September: Human Rights

Topic for September: Human Rights
Saint of the month: St. Peter Claver

St. Peter Claver, SJ (1581-1654) is the patron of African missions and of interracial justice, due to his work with slaves in Colombia. Between the years 1616 and 1650, Peter Claver worked daily to minister to the needs of the 10,000 slaves who arrived each year.

When a ship arrived, Peter first begged for fruits, biscuits, or sweets to bring to the slaves. He then went on board with translators to bring his gifts as well as his skills as a doctor and teacher. Claver entered the holds of the ships and would not leave until every person received a measure of care. Peter gave short instruction in the Catholic faith and baptised as many as he could. In this way he could prevail on the slave owners to give humane treatment to fellow Christians. Peter Claver baptised more than 300,000 slaves by 1651. Continue reading “EMY – September: Human Rights”

EMY – August: Women

Topic for August: Women
Saint to contemplate: Blessed Mother Mary, the master piece of the holy Trinity

The role model of girls and women that are exposed today are related to fashion, dating, marital and any interpersonal relationships as well as professional careers. Unfortunately, they do not deal with their future role as mothers. These models appeal to appearance, to fast fading popularity in the world of entertainment. Often they are of questionable integrity, thereby persistently ignoring the Christian and moral implications of womanhood.

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EMY – July: Youth

Topic for July: Youth
Saint of the month: St. John Bosco

St. John Bosco (1815–1888) was born in Italy to a poor farming family. His father died when he was two, leaving his religious instruction to his pious mother. At the age of nine he had his first of many powerful visions which would come throughout his life. In it Jesus and the Virgin Mary showed him that he was to instruct poor, wayward boys and bring them back to God. As a priest he began ministering to the poor and neglected boys of Turin, Italy, who were driven to desperate conditions in the wake of the Industrial Revolution. Don Bosco became a mentor and spiritual director to them, inspiring them to a life of virtue and saving many from a future of crime and poverty. He met with them as a group – called the Oratory of St. Francis de Sales – and catechised them as a kind spiritual father. Continue reading “EMY – July: Youth”

EMY – June: Priests and Nuns

Topic for June: Priests and Nuns
Saint to contemplate: St. Francis of Assisi (1182-1226)

One day Francis was walking by the dilapidated church of San Damiano. He felt that he was led by the Holy Spirit to enter and pray before the crucifix hanging there. As he was praying, Christ on the crucifix came to life and spoke to him in a tender and kind voice: “Francis, don’t you see that my house is being destroyed? “Go, Francis, and repair my Church in ruins.” The ruinous state of the building was a symbol of the decadence of moral and faith of the Christianity itself.

He was born into a rich merchant family. His conversion to a Gospel way of living led Francis renounced his family and became a poor man with no possessions. He was poor, but he was also joyful. Quickly his radical way of life attracted other followers, who similarly gave away their possessions to become beggars.
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