Archive for the ‘Little Christmas’ Category

August 1: Feast of St. Alphonsus Maria Liguori

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

The Feast of St. Alphonus Liguori (September 27, 1696 – August 1, 1787) according to the 1969 Calendar was celebrated on August 1.  His statue and holy relic were honored in the sanctuary, and the faithful were invited to venerate his relic at the conclusion of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

This statue of St. Alphonsus, from Quebec, is unique in that he is shown in his Redemptorist habit prior to being consecrated a bishop.  In fact, while his hair is already white, he is without his usual beard.

We thank this great Doctor of the Church and Patron Saint of Moral Theologians and Priest Confessors for his love for the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Altar and Our Blessed Lady as well as his devotion to the  Divine Infancy of Our Lord.  While we pray the Stations of the Cross he wrote almost every Friday in Lent, we can also thank him for the prayers we pray every 25th of the Month in Honor of the Child Jesus (“Little Christmas”).  St. Alphonsus was also the Spiritual Father of American Saint John N. Neumann, C.Ss.R.,  (Redemptorist Missionary and 4th Bishop of Philadelphia, PA) and American Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos, C.Ss.R. (d. 1867), whose Shrine is in New Orleans, LA (go to for more information on Blessed Seelos).

St. Alphonus Maria de Liguori, pray for us!

Prayers for the 25th of Every Month

Tuesday, January 25th, 2011

Here is a PDF copy of the prayers we recite in honor of the Child Jesus after the Holy Mass on the 25th of every month, beginning today, January 25th:

Prayers to the Child Jesus for the 25th of every month

A Reflection on the Incarnation by St. Alphonsus Liguori

Sunday, January 23rd, 2011

CONSIDER that after so many centuries, after so many prayers and sighs, the Messiah, whom the holy patriarchs and prophets were not worthy to see, whom the nations sighed for, “the desire of the everlasting hills,” our Savior, has come; he is already born, and has given himself entirely to us: “A child is born to us, and a son is given to us.”

The Son of God has made himself little, in order to make us great.

He has given himself to us, in order that we may give ourselves to him.

He has come to show us his love, in order that we may respond to it by giving him ours.

Let us, therefore, receive him with affection. Let us love him, and have recourse to him in ill our necessities.

“A child gives easily,” says St. Bernard; children readily give anything, that is asked of them. Jesus came into the world as a child in order to show himself ready and willing to give us all! good gifts: “The Father hath given all things into his hands.”

If we wish for light, he has come on purpose to enlighten us.

If we wish for strength to resist our enemies, he has come to give us comfort.

If we wish for pardon and salvation, he has come to pardon and save us.

If, in short, we desire the sovereign gift of divine love, he has come to inflame our hearts with it; and, above all, for this very purpose, he has become a child, and has chosen to show himself to us worthy of our love, in proportion as he was poor and humble, in order to take away from us all fear, and to gain our affections.

“So,” said St. Peter Chrysologus, “should he come who willed to drive away fear, and seek for love.” And Jesus has chosen to come as a little child to make us love him, not only with an appreciative but even a tender love.

All infants attract the tender affection of those who behold them; but who will not love, with all the tenderness of which they are capable, a God whom they behold as a little child, in need of milk to nourish him, trembling with cold, poor, abased, and forsaken, weeping and crying in a manger, and lying on straw?

It was this that made the loving St. Francis exclaim: “Let us love the child of Bethlehem, let us love the child of Bethlehem. Come, souls, and love a God who has become a child, and poor, who is so lovable, and who has come down from heaven to give himself entirely to you.”

January 25: “Little Christmas” in Salem

Sunday, January 23rd, 2011

THIS TUESDAY, THE FEAST OF THE CONVERSION OF ST. PAUL AND THE END OF THE OCTAVE OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY is also the 25th of the Month, and a day traditionally dedicated to the Child Jesus as a monthly remembrance of His Birth (and popularized as “Little Christmas” by many great Saints, as well as Founders of religious congrega-tions, including the Doctor of Prayer and Founder of the Redemptorists, St. Alphonsus Liguori). Therefore, at St. Mary in Salem – on this first “Little Christmas” of the Year of Our Lord 2011 -we will begin the custom of honoring the Child Jesus with prayers and devotions following the morning Mass, continuing on the 25th of every month.

Why not make the sacrifice and assist at Holy Mass on the first “Little Christmas” of 2011? Why not make the resolution to come to church on the 25th of every month to adore and offer thanks to the Lord Jesus, Who, out of His tremendous became Man in the virginal womb of Our Lady?

The general prayer intentions for the monthly “Little Christmas Devotions” will be for the spiritual and physical protection of the children and young people of our parish, the strengthening of Catholic family life, for the end of abortion and child abuse, and for the sick, especially those suffering from cancer. To those general prayer intentions, you are invited to add your own and place them with confidence in the all-loving Heart of the Infant Christ.  Whenever the liturgical calendar permits, the Priest of Salem will offer a Votive Mass of the Holy Name or of the Nativity of Our Lord on the 25th of the month.