Jan 05th - John Neumann
John was born in Germany but, lucky for us, they had too many priests and he felt a call to missionary work. So he loaded up the truck and moved to the United States to be ordained for New York, eventually rising to the rank of Bishop of Philadelphia.
We all have saints we like to carry with us. I literally have John with me, as I am blessed to have a relic procured by classmates during the visit of John Paul II; for my part, I try to let him watch a Phillies game every once in a while.
"My Lord and my God! Have mercy on me and those sheep who, for the time being, have been entrusted to me. Give to my tongue words of life. purify their hearts and make them heed all sound advice and every admonition. Your grace must do everything because I can do nothing but sin—Oh, Jesus, my Redeemer, I am taking Your place. Let me be a redeemer for this parish." Again, before the Blessed Sacrament he went down on his knees as he prepared his first sermon as a priest and begged "God, beseech You to enlighten my mind. Give to my words power and unction that like a two-edged sword they may penetrate deeply into the hearts and minds Of my heart." Much to his satisfaction, his first sermon was well received.
-- Prayers taken from Venerable John Neumann, C.SS.R. Fourth Bishop of Philadelphia By Michael Joseph Curley
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