Dumb Ox and Angelic Doctor
 Greetings!
Saluti! Come stai? (“Salutations! How are you?” in Italian) My sincere hope is that you are doing well on this final Thursday in the month of January. The Catholic Christian faithful celebrate one of the all-time greats today with the man who has been referred to as “The Dumb Ox” and “The Angelic Doctor.” Known more commonly as Thomas Aquinas this Italian Saint was one of the most prolific writers and theologians in the history of the Church.
 
While his peers in school chided him for his girth, quiet nature, and shyness one of his professors, St. Albert the Great, said of him, “This is an ox whose braying all Europe will hear” (www.christianity.com). For his purity, piety, sound doctrine, and extensive writings about angels he received the affectionate title of “The Angelic Doctor” (newtheologicalmovement.blogspot.com). A person could spend years and years reflecting upon his diverse theological works. I would humbly submit just a few minutes of your time to prayerfully ponder some of his more noteworthy quotes:
“To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible.”
 
“There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.”
 
“Rarely affirm, seldom deny, always distinguish.”
 
“Give us, O Lord, a steadfast heart, which no unworthy affection may drag downwards; give us an unconquered heart, which no tribulation can wear out; give us an upright heart, which no unworthy purpose may tempt aside. Bestow upon us also, O Lord our God, understanding to know you, diligence to seek you, wisdom to find you, and a faithfulness that may finally embrace you; through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
 
“Grant me, O Lord my God, a mind to know you, a heart to seek you, wisdom to find you, conduct pleasing to you, faithful perseverance in waiting for you, and a hope of finally embracing you. Amen.”
(Source: www.goodreads.com)
Towards the end of his earthly journey St. Thomas Aquinas had a mystical encounter with Jesus who told him he would reward him for his fidelity and writings with anything he would want. Rather than ask for wealth or fame or health or anything else, Aquinas responded, “Lord, nothing except you.” (www.wordonfire.org) May God give us the Grace to say the same at the end of our pilgrimage this side of Heaven.  

Mercy in Christ,
Fr. James
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Trivia Question of the Week
In Mark 4:23 Jesus spoke to the crowds saying, “Anyone who has ears ought to__________?”

A. Hear
B. Be attentive
C. Stay wake
D. Clean them regularly

See the bottom of this newsletter for the answer.
Holy Land Pilgrimage
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Catholic Schools Raffle
Tickets on sale in the church narthex after all Masses this weekend and the weekends February 20-21 and 27-28. For more information call the ICS office during school hours at 763-788-9065.
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Answer to the Trivia Question of the Week:
A. Hear
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