Jun 132016

St. Anthony of Padua

Actions speak louder than words; let your words teach and your actions speak. We are full of words but empty of actions, and therefore are cursed by the Lord, since he himself cursed the fig tree when he found no fruit but only leaves. It is useless for a man to flaunt his knowledge of the law if he undermines its teaching by his actions.

But the apostles “spoke as the Spirit gave them the gift of speech.” Happy the man whose words issue from the Holy Spirit and not from himself!

We should speak, then, as the Holy Spirit gives us the gift of speech. Our humble and sincere request to the Spirit for ourselves should be that we may bring the day of Pentecost to fulfillment, insofar as he infuses us with his grace, by using our bodily senses in a perfect manner by keeping the commandments. Likewise we shall request that we may be filled with a keen sense of sorrow and with fiery tongues for confessing the faith so our deserved reward may be to stand in the blazing splendor of the saints and to look upon the triune God. – from a sermon by Saint Anthony of Padua

Apr 292016

When life gives us a downpour of tasks, deadlines or situations that seem too difficult to handle I try to remember this quote.

Start by doing what is necessary.precioustreasures.com.au

“Start by doing what’s necessary, then what’s possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”
St Francis of Assisi

We all need encouragement from time to time especially when we’re faced with ‘mountains’ which we believe can’t be moved.

To believe a thing impossible is to make it so.   French Proverb

Impossible only means that you haven’t found the solution yet.   Anonymous

Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!   Audrey Hepburn

Never tell a young person that anything cannot be done. God may have been waiting centuries for someone ignorant enough of the impossible to do that very thing.   G. M. Trevelyan

I’m not always quick to remember these quotes but I do try, and when I remember I do find it easier to deal with the ‘mountain’. One small step after another and before you know it the job is done and sometimes you’ve accomplished something way beyond your expectations. It is so true when St. Francis finished off his quote by saying ‘and suddenly you are doing the impossible’.

It’s also true when Walt Disney said

“It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.”

It's kind of fun to do the impossible.precioustreasures.com.au

Encourage one another.

Apr 242016

There are a number of paintings depicting the Madonna del Buon Consiglio, (Our Lady of Good Counsel). I hadn’t given much thought or had much interest until my visit to Italy. After waiting a number of years to return to Italy I was able to get there in 2013 and kept it simple with a visit to Rome, Assisi and Abruzzo (for a short visit with relatives). It was mainly a pilgrimage for me, although I preferred to call myself a Pilgrim/Tourist on that trip.

On my visit to Assisi I came across a small painting on display at the Sacro Convento Museum at the Basilica of San Francesco. It immediately caught my eye and I fell in love with it. It was a beautiful depiction of Our Lady of Good Counsel painted by Pasquale Sarullo. Sarullo (1828 – 1893) was a 19th-century Franciscan friar, priest and artist. He was from Ciminna, in the province of Palermo, Italy; his work was appreciated by his contemporaries and had an international circulation. I can’t find detailed information about this artist or images of other works he painted but his painting of Our Lady of Good Counsel is a popular one, and I came home with a souvenir of Our Lady of Good Counsel – a small plaque with the image by Sarullo.

Our Lady of Good Counsel by Sarullo

Our Lady of Good Counsel by Sarullo

Devotion to the Mother of Good Counsel is associated with the story of a miraculous icon. The sacred image is found in a church in Genazzano, a beautiful town on a hill, south-east of Rome. The church dedicated to Our Lady of Good Counsel was built there in the fourth century. The fresco image was painted on a sheet of plaster that was very thin and delicate. It has survived through the centuries, withstanding several earthquakes and the bombing during World War II. Even though altars and walls around it were destroyed and the roof caved in, the icon was not destroyed.

Our Lady of Good Counsel fresco at Genazzano Italy

Our Lady of Good Counsel fresco at Genazzano Italy

The icon at Genazzano is approximately 30 centimetres wide and 46 centimetres high. The Christ Child nestles close to his mother. Mary supports Jesus with her left arm. She bends her head toward him, and their cheeks touch tenderly. The left hand of Jesus gently grasps the rim of her dress, indicating the intimacy of nursing……reflecting Mary’s concern for both Jesus and his Church. It is the most famous fresco in Augustinian possession. There is an annual feast day on 26th April.

Madonna del Buon Consiglio by Sarullo

Madonna del Buon Consiglio by Sarullo

This is the painted version by Sarullo that I was drawn to… it’s beautiful, and I love it.

Apr 042016

Pope Francis' Prayer Intentions April 2016.www.precioustreasures.com.au

These are two causes that have been on my heart lately so it was lovely to read that these are Pope Francis’ Prayer Intentions for April.

Small Farmers – That small farmers may receive a just reward for their precious labour.


Evangelisation Prayer Intention for April

African Christians – That Christians in Africa may give witness to love and faith in Jesus Christ amid political-religious conflicts.


Mar 292016

Mother Angelica, born into eternal life on Easter Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 5:00p.m.

While the world mourns and sends tributes for the passing of Mother Angelica, I would like pay my tribute, in a small way, with a few of my favourite quotes from Mother Angelica. I will remember her as an amazing and inspirational woman. Her words and teachings were always down-to-earth and in the Spirit, full of encouragement, and given in love. She was close to the Heart of Jesus, having a trusting, child-like relationship with her Lord … and her desire to do God’s will was contagious.

Mother Angelica. Faith is what gets you started.www.precioustreasures.com.au

Faith is what gets you started. Hope is what keeps you going. Love is what brings you to the end.

Mother Angelica.Faith is one foot on the ground.www.precioustreasures.com.au

Faith is one foot on the ground, one foot in the air, and a queasy feeling in the stomach.

Mother Angelica. Where most men work for degrees.www.precioustreasures.com.au

Where most men work for degrees after their names, we work for one before our names: ‘St.’ It’s a much more difficult degree to attain. It takes a lifetime, and you don’t get your diploma until you’re dead.

May Mother Angelica live on in our hearts. The best tribute we could give would be that her work continues on through the legacy she left behind.

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord,
and let the perpetual light shine upon her.
May she rest in peace.

For up-to-date news on Mother Angelica or to learn more about her life and work please visit the following websites –
EWTN – Mother Angelica

Vatican Radio

Catholic News Agency

Mar 182016

There comes a time - Martin Luther King JR.www.precioustreasures.com.au

The purpose of this post to help spread awareness of the new Infant Viability Bill which was introduced into Victoria’s State Parliament in October 2015, by Dr Rachel Carling-Jenkins. Since 2008 Victoria’s State Parliament introduced the most draconian abortion laws in Australia, and in the world. (See Abortion Law Reform Act 2008) The saddest thing next to this law being passed is that the general Victorian population is unaware of how severe the abortion issue is here. The time hasn’t come quickly enough to do something about it.

Accurate statistics on abortion in Australia is difficult to find because it seems that no precise figures are kept on abortion anywhere in Australia. The three most populous States, NSW, Victoria and Queensland do not keep any statistics on abortion; And although WA, SA and NT collect abortion statistics it only reflects abortions from which a Medicare rebate has been claimed. Some information can be found on the internet, most of which is not current data but may give an idea of how many abortions have been carried out in Australia. What happens in this procedure? What happens in failed abortions where babies are born alive? Does the unborn baby feel any pain? What happens to the bodies and pieces of aborted babies? What of the effects of this surgery on the mother? How much information and/or support is given to the mother? What are the reasons for each abortion and what are the statistics per reason?

We can find a mountain of statistics from the AIHW (Authoritative information and statistics to promote better health and well-being), over a variety of categories, such as Surgery in Australia – we can find out who had the surgery, and how many were involved in emergency or elective admissions, the reasons for the admissions, and the care that was provided … but no statistics on abortion.

We can find statistics on which animals are responsible for causing the most human deaths in Australia (NCIS); or from the RSPCA we can find national statistics on Animals received by each RSPCA Society and reasons for euthanasia of dogs and cats etc …but something as sacred as human life within the womb, and the life carrying the unborn baby, seems to have no significance or importance here at all. What of the woman who is about to go through the abortion surgery – what of the health, well-being and care for her? Where are the statistics? Members in government don’t want to know how many unborn babies have been aborted, the reasons for the abortion, how many have been born alive and left to die, or even the physical, emotional and mental health effects this operation may have on the mother. They can avoid collecting statistics and ignore it all but the facts backed by medical science are still present, they will stand and won’t go away even if not collected in a tidy statistical format.

It is time now to help spread awareness of the new Infant Viability Bill which was introduced into Victoria’s State Parliament in October 2015, by Dr Rachel Carling-Jenkins.

As stated on the website –

This is the first formal attempt at pro-life legislation in Victoria in decades, and the first legislative attempt to remedy the abortion law reforms of 2008.

Under this Bill:
• Abortions would no longer be allowed from the 20th week of pregnancy.
• Infant viability will be promoted and supported (all infants born alive from the 20th week of pregnancy on-wards, including as the result of a medical emergency, must be cared for with the intent to save the infant’s life if at all possible).
• Mothers who are at least 20 weeks pregnant, who present in distress to their doctor must be offered practical support, for example a referral to a pregnancy support service offering holistic care (such as counselling, social and practical support).
• Penalties will be introduced for physicians who breach the new laws and for medical facilities in which the laws are breached.
• Mothers will not be criminalised or face any penalties.

Come and join the good fight and lend your support behind this worthwhile cause and help get this Bill passed. Watch this video, visit the Infant Viability Bill website (and register to keep up-to-date with the news) and please pass it on to others.

A call to action video based on the current Abortion Laws here in Victoria Australia

Created by PAUL BOVOLOS PRODUCTIONS for the Infant Viability Bill.

Infant Viability Bill 

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