St Philomena’s help for an alcoholic

Concord statue
 
 
 
 

In the 1950’s a man left his wife and five children because of his alcoholism. His mother-in-law prayed to St Philomena to help him.  The Salvation Army found him in a very derelict state and took him in and rehabilitated him. In gratitude his mother-in-law whose name happens to be Philomena donated the statue of St Philomena pictured above to a parish in Sydney, Australia. St Philomena is powerful in her intercession for those who are addicted to alcohol, drugs and even cigarettes.  The account above was related to me by a friend, who personally knew the lady mentioned in the story above.

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An ecumenical boss

I once worked in an office in Sydney, where the staff were consisted mainly of Catholics and Jews.  The boss in my section was a member of the Anglican Church. He used to let the Catholics go to Mass in work hours at a nearby church on Holy Days of Obligation. The reason for this was that his little grandson was a Catholic and used to ask him why people were in different churches. This is hard to explain to a three year old. The boss had a great time telling this to the bank manager over the phone in these words, “I let Gilroy’s mob go to Mass”.  For those who are not familiar with this ‘Gilroy’s mob’ was the bosses’ way of describing the Catholics on his staff.  Cardinal Gilroy was the first Australian born cardinal.  At that time he was the Archbishop of Sydney.

Loretta Young

The following story was told by the late Father Aeden McGrath an Irish missionary priest at a talk which he gave in Sydney, Australia.  Father McGrath was in China during World War II when the Japanese Army were in the country.  The Japanese were advancing toward the area where his parish was located. The local women were terrified of what was going to happen when the Japanese soldiers arrived. They begged Father McGrath who was a very short man to protect them.  There was very little that he could do. He prayed to Our Lady for help.  The Japanese soldiers arrived.  The Japanese sergeant had a big crush on Loretta Young the Hollywood actress, who he had seen in movies. He was keen to find out if Father McGrath had ever met Loretta Young.  As a matter of fact Father McGrath had met her, probably through association with Father Patrick Peyton (the founder of the Family Rosary Crusade). The sergeant ordered his soldiers to leave the people in peace, because Father McGrath knew Loretta Young!
This is one of the stories in my book: Help from heaven (Answers to prayers). The book can be read free on-line by pressing here
            

Help for people who are suffering from Panic attacks

Prayer is the most important thing to help the sufferer of panic attack. I have had firsthand experience of this unpleasant condition and have also given voluntary counseling, to people who have been sent to me, by a priest friend who did not know what else to do to help people who came to him, seeking prayers and help to overcome their panic attacks.

These people did recover from the condition.  When you add prayer to the equation things improve out of sight.

 

As well as prayer, I would like to recommend to your friend the following advice.  There are many books on panic attack, however the one which I would recommend to your friend is entitled: Living with It. The author of the book is Bev Aisbett. It is published by HarperCollins Publishers (Australia) Pty Ltd.

 

A search of the Internet  will quickly locate web sites which distribute the book.  What is different about this book, is that it is actually a cartoon book with captions.  The author of the book Bev Aisbett, is a professional cartoon artist, living in Sydney.  She wrote this book, after suffering and recovering from this debilitating condition.  The visual humour in the book is extremely valuable to the sufferer of panic attack, and instructs them in what the condition really is, and the techniques which you can use to overcome panic attack.

 

Briefly the symptoms of panic attack are caused by a release of a large flood of adrenaline into the blood stream, which ordinarily is meant to protect you in dangerous situations, such as when you would flee if you saw a violent person running toward you to physically attack you, or to help you to move with great haste out of the path of a speeding car, which was coming toward you. However in the case of panic attack the body releases a flood of these chemicals inappropriately, (when there is no real danger).  However you are not sunk in this matter. There are steps that you can take to deal with the situation and be healed of panic attack.

 

I will outline some of these for you now.  If you feel the condition of panic attack coming upon you with its unmistakable symptoms of heart palpitations, sweating, shaking, extraordinary fear that doesn’t match the situation that you are in, (for example you may be just simply shopping at the supermarket, where no real danger exists), there are special breathing techniques which can be used.  Another technique is that you dare your body to unleash the symptoms upon you.  The symptoms will abate or stop completely, if you adopt an attitude that says,  “I do not care if the body unleashes the symptoms of panic attack upon me”.  The release of adrenaline in panic attacks is not able to operate when this attitude is adopted.  The more often you get on top of this matter the sooner you will recover from this condition. 

 

It has been observed that consciously switching to a calm attitude, during a panic attack, somehow enables the brain to switch off further releases of Adrenalin, thereby minimising the severity of the attack.

 

The habitual use of relaxation techniques, such as lying down and listening to soothing music or using imagination techniques, such as the imagining yourself in a very relaxed calm place such as the beach, are also useful in the treatment and management of panic attack.  It is important to replace negative and fearful ideas with the calming and positive ones.

 

It doesn’t really matter what stresses in your life led to panic attack, the important thing is dealing with it, and recovering from it.

 

Australian quiz

What state is Sydney in?

Is Tasmania a state of Australia or is it another country?

What is the capital of Victoria?

Name the most famous beach in New South Wales?

Name the capital of South Australia?

Healing of autism (Mary Help of Christians)

In the 1980’s an outdoor shrine of Mary Help of Christians was built and blessed in Sydney. Our daughter was three years of age at the time. She had severe autism and could not talk. The man who was in charge of the shrine was a friend of our family. He told us that he had a plan to hold regular gatherings at the shrine, where people would pray for specially chosen intentions. e.g. a person with cancer. He selected our daughter as the first person who would be prayed for. We willingly agreed. It was his hope that our daughter would receive a miracle healing. On the appointed day, a group of people gathered at the shrine. A Jesuit priest brought our daughter up to the microphone and introduced her to the people and explained to them that she had autism.  He asked them to join with him in saying the Rosary for her healing. At the end of the Rosary the priest asked the people to keep this intention in their prayers. There was no instant miracle that day, but in the years to come our daughter made spectacular progress.

 

Useful information 

The powerful intercession of the Holy Souls in Purgatory for their benefactors and ways to help them

 

Novena to St Philomena the Wonder Worker for the healing of autism