UP Catholic 09 22 2017 E Edition Page 8

8 September 22, 2017 THE U.P. CATHOLIC www.upcatholic.org Bishops consecrate Scotland to Immaculate Heart of Mary (CNA/EWTN News) - Constant, pouring rain did not deter the Catholic bishops of Scotland from consecrating Scotland to the Immaculate Heart of Mary on Sunday, Sept. 4. Decked in rain jackets and carrying colorful umbrellas, an estimated five thousand faithful joined the bishops for the historic Mass and consecration, which took place at the national Marian shrine at Carfin, some 35 miles to the west of the capital city of Edinburgh. Today, we consecrate Scotland to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. We express together sorrow for our personal and communal sinfulness, and we implore Marys guidance and strength that we live as a Christian nation should, Bishop Brian McGee of the Diocese of Argyll and the Isles in Scotland said during his homily. The consecration took place during the centennial anniversa- ry year of the appearance of Our Lady of Fatima. One hundred years ago, from May through October 1917, the Virgin Mary ap- peared monthly to three shepherd children in Portugal, delivering messages about conversion, the recitation of the rosary and the fate of the world. I'm very sorry that it's started to rain, joked Bishop McGee at the beginning of his homily. Perhaps it reminds us of the great miracle of the sun, that it was very wet that day too, he said, referring to the last apparition of Mary in Portugal. On that day, a steady rain also fell, transforming the field where Mary appeared into a muddy wet mess before the renowned Miracle of the Sun occurred. The bishop noted that everyone present for the consecration was consecrating not only the country, but their entire selves to the Immacu- late Heart of Mary. Every one of us says I am determined to be consecrated to the Immaculate Heart as well. With God's grace, I want to every day, in every sit- uation, to say yes to God. Imagine that, he said. ...imagine everywhere thousands of people, every day, every circumstance, striving to say yes to God, he noted. What a force for good that would be in Scotland. Bishop McGee added that just as our earthly mothers want the best for us, so too does our Heavenly Mother Mary. Our Mothers are precious to us. Even if they are long dead, we know that they loved us and only want what is best for us. Our Heavenly Mother loves us and only wants what is best for us, he said. One hundred years ago in Fatima, Our Lady insisted to us her children that her Immaculate Heart will tri- umph. Our Lady reminded us that sin most certainly yes has a grip in the world. But a person, who relying on Gods grace, deter- mines with his whole heart...to reject sin and embrace the ways of God, that person too will triumph. The Immaculate Heart of Mary is both a consolation and an inspira- tion to us, he said. Archbishop Philip Tartaglia of Glasgow presided over the Mass and the prayer of consecration, which he asked everyone to recite together. We consecrate Scotland to you: all that we have, all that we love, all that we are. To you we give our minds and hearts, our bodies and souls. We willingly place at your service our homes and our families, our parishes and schools: we desire that all that is in us and around us may belong to you, O Mary, and may share in the benefits of your motherly care, the faithful prayed together. There was also a motion in Scotlands Parlia- ment to recognize the consecration, the Catholic Herald reported. That the Parliament recognises that Scotlands Catholic bishops will consecrate the nation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary on 3 September 2017; understands that the bishops will pray for Scot- land at the Marian Shrine at the Carfin Grotto, near Motherwell, asking that Scotland be ener- gised with a renewed desire to seek the truth, and understands that at the same time they will pray for all parliamentarians and government, so that they will play their part in building a true civilisa- tion of love and strive to create a place where all people are valued, a place where poor, lonely and marginalised people are not forgotten, and a place where people are free to practise their faith, read the text of the motion, which was supported by six representatives. Funding changes in works for retreat center As part of the budget balancing process this year, direct diocesan financial support of Marygrove Retreat Center was halted for the 2017-2018 fiscal year. Last year the center in Garden received about $18,000 from the diocese, which amounted to 8 percent of its budgeted annual revenue. In an Aug. 29 letter to supporters, Marygrove Director Father Timothy Ferguson wrote, As we enter into our 70th year of serving as the retreat center for the Diocese of Mar- quette, Marygrove faces a number of challenges and oppor- tunities. In recent years, the number of retreatants coming to Marygrove has declined, causing some cancellations of retreats. At the same time, our costs have increased (some- thing I think were all too familiar with). While the diocese remains personally committed to the mission and ministry of Marygrove, financial considerations and changing prior- ities have caused the diocese to withdraw our annual subsi- dy Rather than wringing our hands and lamenting the sit- uation, Father Ferguson wrote that he would rather focus on the positives and pointed out that Marygrove is still a vibrant place, truly holy ground, with a remarkable past and, I'm convinced a bright future. As an example, Father Ferguson recounted a visitor who doesn't live in the area, but recently came to pray in the centers chapel where his journey to sobriety began at a retreat 30 years ago. Although the retreat center faces the same struggle as oth- ers across the country with declining numbers of retreatants, new groups have begun to use the center in the past year. The Knights of Columbus state leadership team used the center for an overnight retreat and meeting with diocesan Knights. Nazareth Families, a group of mostly Polish-speak- ing Catholics from across the country committed to a life of common prayer and discipleship, came to Marygrove for the irst time for a retreat. Secular Carmelites use the center for an annual retreat. To support diocesan employees spiritual growth, as well as Marygrove's need for additional retreatants to keep the center viable, the diocese offered a new and ongoing benefit. Each year employees may participate in one of the regular- ly-scheduled retreats, with the cost covered by the diocese. I hope that you've been here and experienced the same type of healing, of insight, of deepening of your relationship with God, Father Ferguson wrote to supporters. I hope that, like me, you consider Marygrove to be a special place, so needed in our busy world today. More than financial support, Father Ferguson encouraged people to come to the center and take advantage of the many spiritual benefits it offers, and to pray. In turn, this would support the center and promote its ongoing viability. What I'm talking about is your commitment to Marygrove to either come here for a retreat yourself (and bring a friend or five!), or to help offset the cost of a retreat for someone who does not have the financial means to do so, said Father Ferguson. A daily Hail Mary (or other prayer for non-Catholics) is encouraged by Father Ferguson, calling prayer the lifeblood of Marygrove. Marygrove Retreat Center is located on M-183, 9 miles south of US-2. To learn more visit www.marygrove.org, write to P.O. Box 38, Garden, MI 49835 or call (906) 644-2771. i h u s i r m r G T b t G a w t A prayer card image of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

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