Pioneers of New France

Many consider Canada to be one of the best countries to live in. However, in the 17th century, when Canada was just newly founded, it was considered the country of crosses. Fountain of Grace takes a look at how Blessed Catherine of St. Augustine and St. Francois de Laval sacrificed their comfort and contributed to the well-being of Canadians.
Publish date: 2020 - 1 - 25

Food for Thought Christmas Special: Fabulous Four from Sabah

John the Baptist, the forerunner of Christ, preached repentance in the wilderness. He ate locusts and wild honey. Some Bible scholars think that “locusts” could also refer to some kind of bean. Adapting from a famous Malaysian dish, our version of the “Fabulous Four from Sabah” includes sweet peas as well as fried dried fish mixed with honey to imitate the feel of eating locusts.
Publish date: 2019 - 12 - 7

Prep for Christmas: Learning from the Hermits in Cappadocia

Cappadocia, Turkey is the hometown of three Church Fathers and where numerous monasteries and churches are located. "Prep for Christmas" takes you there to get to know the lives of the hermits in the past.
Publish date: 2019 - 11 - 30

St. Marguerites and Montreal

Montreal, Canada was very different from what it is now when the city was first founded more than 370 years ago. The cross at Mount Royal reveals the deep Catholic roots of this city. Fountain of Grace takes a look at how two saints, both named Marguerite - St. Marguerite Bourgeoys and St. Marguerite d'Youville - contributed to the early developments of Montreal.
Publish date: 2019 - 11 - 2

A Burning Heart for Souls: St. Francis Xavier

In January 2018, a precious relic of St. Francis Xavier - his right forearm which he used to baptize more than 100,000 people - was on tour across Canada. One of the churches even attracted 13,000 people to venerate the relic in one day. Fountain of Grace takes a look at the life of St. Francis Xavier, as well as Catholic Christian Outreach - the group of modern missionaries that organized the relic pilgrimage.
Publish date: 2019 - 9 - 7

Spiritual Talk – Fr. Ho talks about Saints

There are three kinds of saints recognized by the Church: Biblical saints, traditional saints, and ecclesiastical saints. Biblical saints lived in the time of the Bible, such as Mary and Joseph. Traditional saints were martyrs, monastics, Church Fathers, and missionaries who lived in the first millennium, before a canonization process existed, so their sanctity was recognized through the liturgy. After the first millennium, a canonization process was established to investigate the sanctity of candidates for recognition as saints. If the investigation begins, the candidate is known as a Servant of God. Once evidence of martyrdom or heroic sanctity is found, the candidate becomes a Venerable. If the candidate advances to become a Blessed, the local church or community will venerate them through the liturgy like a saint. If the candidate is a martyr, then they automatically become a Blessed; but if not, then evidence must be found that they are already in Heaven. That is, evidence of an intercessory miracle that defies natural explanation must be found. If their importance extends beyond the local church or community to the universal Church, as shown by their intercessory miracles, then the Pope can proclaim the candidate as a Saint. At this point, the universal Church will venerate them through the naming of Churches and mentioning them in the liturgy. The Church has dedicated different days to commemorate different saints who gave witness to God at different times and places, showing us that everyone can walk on the path to holiness through the grace of God.
Publish date: 2019 - 8 - 24

Jesus and His Rock

An honest but impetuous fisherman, Peter gave up everything to follow Jesus when he was called. But he was weak and even denied Jesus three times. Yet our Lord not only forgave him, but also made Peter the head of his Church on earth. Fountain of Grace takes you to the Holy Land to relive the story of how St. Peter became the Rock on which Christ built his Church.
Publish date: 2019 - 6 - 22

Music of the Heart – Matteo Ricci Musical – The Journey

Bonny made a special trip to Hong Kong to watch the original Catholic musical "Matteo Ricci". She will share with us the main actors of the musical and what is Matteo Ricci's spirit, and also the song - The Journey.
Publish date: 2019 - 6 - 8

Music of the Heart – Matteo Ricci Musical – Sogno Impossibile

Bonny made a special trip to Hong Kong to watch the original Catholic musical "Matteo Ricci" and share the origins of the musical and the theme song.
Publish date: 2019 - 6 - 1

Radio broadcast – Full episode (June 1, 2019)

【Music of the Heart】Matteo Ricci Musical - Sogno Impossibile 【Spiritual Talk】Fr. Anthony Ho talks about Messiah. 【Cold Knowledge (3)】Question: For the Love and Life program you can listen on the web, is it the Toronto broadcast version or the Vancouver broadcast version? 【Edwin's blog】June 1, 2019
Publish date: 2019 - 6 - 1

Guardians of Canada: Our Lady of the Cape and Blessed Frédéric Janssoone

Trois-Rivières, a French-speaking city in Quebec, is the home of treasures of the Catholic Church in Canada. Blessed Frédéric Janssoone, a Franciscan friar who devoted all of his energy in spreading the Good News of Christ, might become Canada's next saint. A little-known stone chapel ultimately became a Marian shrine which attracts thousands of pilgrims yearly. Fountain of Grace uncovers these treasures for you.
Publish date: 2019 - 5 - 11

Mother of New France: St. Mary of the Incarnation

In 1639, St. Mary of the Incarnation left France for Canada, a newly founded settlement, so that girls may receive an education. What did she give up in order to fulfill this God-given mission? Fountain of Grace takes a look at how St. Mary of the Incarnation gives her life for Canada.
Publish date: 2019 - 4 - 27

Small Town, Big Mission: Everyone is Missionary

What does the word "missionary" call to mind? In the 21st century, how do missionaries live their lives? Missionaries from four Catholic churches in Macau share with you their stories.
Publish date: 2019 - 4 - 6

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (20)

In 1939, St. Josemaría Escrivá successfully escaped Communist territory and when the Spanish Civil War ended, he returned to Madrid. Opus Dei was criticized for being a secret society, so they received recognition from the Archbishop of Madrid in 1941 and from Pope Pius XII in 1950. Opus Dei had laity, married persons, and even some “co-operators”, some of whom were not even Catholics. These people helped Opus Dei in its ministries, like education and cultural works. Although persecution of Opus Dei continued, St. Josemaría responded not with enmity but prayer, and in 1951, he consecrated the families of all Opus Dei members to the Holy Family and the entire Opus Dei to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. He sent Opus Dei members around the world to spread the Gospel. He knew that the period of Vatican II would be a turbulent time, so he distributed Rosaries, asking for prayers for the Church, and went to Marian pilgrimage sites, praying for the Church himself. The saint passed away in 1975, hopeful of helping more people in Heaven, and was canonized by Pope John Paul II in 2002. He taught us that everyone has a vocation to holiness and has apostolic work.
Publish date: 2019 - 3 - 30

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (19)

In 1937, St. Josemaría Escrivá and his companions waited in the forest to be smuggled out of Communist territory. They made good use of their time in hiding – they would wake up at 7am, pray at 7:15am, celebrate Mass at 7:30am, pray the Rosary, and meditate. He assigned jobs to his companions: collecting wood, cleaning, keeping records, leading prayers, and giving talks on their occupations. One day, the time came to leave and St. Josemaría retrieved the Eucharist from a silver cigarette case for them to adore. On Sunday, they were climbing a mountain and decided to celebrate the Mass on the mountainside. The flat stone that served as the altar was so low that St. Josemaría had to kneel to celebrate Mass and needed his companions to shield the Eucharist from being blown away. They reached mountaintop before sunset thanks to St. Josemaría’s encouragement. But the next day, they had to climb another mountain, and his breathing became hurried. His companions had to carry him, but he said, “I have come not to be served, but to serve.” They began praying the Rosary, but with their hands occupied with climbing, they lost count. Some decades had 20-30 Hail Mary’s. Then, they reached the mountaintop.
Publish date: 2019 - 3 - 23

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (18)

In 1937, St. Josemaría Escrivá and his companions were smuggled out of Barcelona. Not long after, the Communist police cracked down on the place they had been staying at. During their escape, they stayed in a farmhouse and celebrated Mass with a glass as the chalice and a notebook as the Missal. There was still a risk of capture, so they moved to an abandoned rectory nearby. St. Josemaría began having doubts whether it was the will of God that he leave Madrid and escape Communist-controlled territory. He prayed to the Virgin Mary to give him a rose as a sign that he was doing the will of God. One day, as he told his companions that he would not be celebrating Mass, he went to an abandoned church and emerged ecstatic. In his hands was a wooden rose – he would celebrate Mass that day. At another time, they had to hide in a cabin in the woods to wait for more refugees before continuing. St. Josemaría named it St. Raphael’s Cabin and prayed for the angel’s intercession. As a witness later recounted, the Mass that he celebrated in the forest was very sacred. The priest was recollected and focused and the singing of birds added to the atmosphere.
Publish date: 2019 - 3 - 16

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (17)

St. Josemaría Escrivá had evaded capture thus far in Madrid during the Spanish Civil War, but his friends knew that it was a matter of time before he was caught by the Communists. They brought him to some smugglers in Barcelona, who would take him to the Nationalist-controlled area. St. Josemaría had an influential friend in Barcelona, an old classmate while studying law, and an atheist. Upon arrival in Barcelona, the friend invited him over for dinner and tried to convince him to accept a legal career to save his life. But St. Josemaría was adamant that he would not abandon his priestly vocation. Seeing this, the friend told him, “If you ever get captured, tell them you are my brother, and I will see what I can do.” In 1937, Barcelona suffered famine and in their apartment, a starving dog was so hungry that it ate the belt and sock of St. Josemaría’s travelling companion. Nonetheless, St. Josemaría gave his food to the poor children and when that ran out, he played with them, giving them love and concern.
Publish date: 2019 - 3 - 9

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (16)

During the Spanish Civil War, St. Josemaría Escrivá hid in the Honduran Consulate; not wanting to waste his time, he continued to celebrate the Mass, pray the Rosary, and meditate with fellow refugees. They also studied other languages in the hopes of spreading the Opus Dei around the world after the war. He personally wrote prolifically and read the classics and theological works. He also sought Confession from other priests once a week. A follower, named Isidoro, used his Argentine citizenship to transit freely in and out of Communist-occupied Madrid. He served as St. Josemaría’s messenger, carrying spiritual reflections and the Eucharist to others. However, as all priests in Madrid had either fled or were in hiding, many people died without receiving the Sacraments. St. Josemaría decided to leave the Consulate, carrying fake documents and dressed as a civilian. He prayed many Rosaries on the streets, heard Confessions, consoled people, and preached secretly. Sometimes, he would narrowly evade capture, saved only by the careful attention of his sympathizers.
Publish date: 2019 - 3 - 2

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (15)

For five months in the Spanish Civil War, St. Josemaría Escrivá hid from the Communists in an insane asylum. Many of the “patients” were actually refugees; as many of the medical staff had Communist sympathies, they would report suspected refugees to the secret police. However, some doctors taught St. Josemaría how to imitate an insane person. Assigned to him were three nurses – two of whom were Communist sympathizers and one, the head nurse María Luisa, who was a reliable person. St. Josemaría told her that he was a Catholic priest and asked her to stand guard as he celebrated Mass in his room. In 1936, due to the severe religious persecution, the Holy See exempted priests in Spain from the usual requirements of an altar, liturgical vessels, and vestments for celebrating the Mass. Every day, St. Josemaría secretly celebrated the Mass and brought the Eucharist to other political refugees in the asylum. He would also write letters to encourage the other patients, using codewords to disguise their contents: “Don Manuel” meant Jesus, “Don Manuel’s mother” meant Mary, and grandfather meant God the Father. St. Josemaría wrote his letters like a grandfather to his grandchildren. In 1937, he moved to hide at the Honduran Consulate; before leaving, he gave the Eucharist to the other refugees wrapped in paper so they could receive without touching it with their hands. Because consulates enjoy diplomatic immunity, they sheltered many Catholic refugees, although they suffered overcrowding and starvation. He would offer Mass every day on luggage cases as an altar, with a crystal glass as a chalice, and with a suit and tie as vestments.
Publish date: 2019 - 2 - 23

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (14)

During the Spanish Civil War, St. Josemaría Escrivá was on the run from the Communists. On August 28, 1936, he hid in the third-floor apartment of a man named Manuel and one of Manuel’s maternal relatives. The troops began searching from the ground floor up and the three men moved up to the rooftop and hid. As the troops neared, St. Josemaría told the relative, “I am a priest. If you wish, you can make a perfect contrition and your sins will be forgiven.” As the relative later recalled, revealing his priestly office was very courageous, for had the troops found them, he could have sold out St. Josemaría to save his own life. St. Josemaría began praying to his guardian angel, encouraged the other two men to do so too, and forgave their sins. They asked, “What will happen if they find and kill us?” He replied, “Then you will go to heaven.” The footsteps neared the door they were hiding behind, then stopped, and turned around. Of all the doors of the apartment, the soldiers neglected to search the one hiding the three men! At another time, St. Josemaría learned that his friend Fr. Pedro had been killed and he wept. Before the war, they had discussed the possibility of being martyred and had agreed that whichever one was martyred first would pray for the other in heaven. A few days before his death, Fr. Pedro said, “Now is the time to study the lives of the early Christians, to know how they worked amidst persecution, obeyed the Church, proclaimed Jesus Christ, prepared for martyrdom, forgave their persecutors. Fr. Pedro was canonized in 2003. Starting from October 1936, St. Josemaría hid in an insane asylum for five months.
Publish date: 2019 - 2 - 16

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (13)

St. Josemaría Escrivá would invite a priest known for being difficult to get along with to lunch every Wednesday. He would flag a taxi for him, order him good food, and prepare conversation topics beforehand. As Wednesdays were dedicated to St. Joseph, St. Josemaría would treat the priest as reverently as he would St. Joseph. St. Josemaría also went to lunch with a medical student, who was similarly friendless. At least he can experience some love from us, thought Josemaría. When the student went to university, St. Josemaría would clean his dorm room for him. From 1936 to 1939, Spain was in civil war; in the Communist-occupied regions, priests and clergy were killed and laity were imprisoned for wearing religious symbols. The penalty for hiding a priest or attending a Mass was death. St. Josemaría sent his students home and went into hiding. Many friends did not want to take him in, and one person was executed because of him; St. Josemaría would henceforth pray for his soul at every Mass. During this period, St. Josemaría had no bread and wine to consecrate, so he would pray a “dry Mass”, saying all the prayers of the Mass except for the consecration. With a fervent heart, St. Josemaría made spiritual communion where sacramental communion was impossible.
Publish date: 2019 - 2 - 9

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (12)

In 1935, St. Josemaría Escrivá requested the permission of the Bishop of Madrid to retain the Blessed Sacrament in the chapels of his schools. This was approved and St. Josemaría was ecstatic, telling his friend Pedro that God mustn’t feel lonely or forgotten at his schools. On March 1st, St. Josemaría celebrated a Mass in honour of St. Joseph, welcomed the new students and introduced the newest resident – Jesus. He was devoted to the Eucharist and decorated the Tabernacle with flowers, thinking that they were like kisses to call the mind to the presence of God. In 1936, Spain held an election and the leftist parties won, immediately sparking anti-Catholic persecution: Catholics were killed and churches plundered. Despite the danger, St. Josemaría still openly wore his priestly cassock in the streets, unwilling to hide his priestly identity in case someone needed him to administer the Sacraments. Whenever he encountered dangerous situations, he would pray to Mary for protection. In the few weeks before the Spanish Civil War, he met with Fr. Pedro and discussed the possibility that they too would be martyred. But they both agreed that their friendship would not end with death, that if one of them were killed, they would pray for the other in Heaven.
Publish date: 2019 - 2 - 2

Spiritual Talk – Fr Ho talks about St Josemaria Escrivá (10)

In February 1933, St. Josemaría Escrivá began to teach catechism to university students. He brought an image of Mary to class which he had found on the floor of an anti-religious place, ripped from a catechism textbook. In a spirit of love and reparation, he dubbed it “Our Lady of the Catechism” and framed it. After class, he took his three students to a chapel for Benediction – ten years later, he described feeling that God was blessing not just those students, but innumerable people of all races. More students came and they began to teach children themselves. In June, he founded a college in a small apartment – there were two classrooms, a reading room, a guest room, a living room, a kitchen, and his own office. He taught law, architecture, math, physics, and languages. While studying a doctorate in law himself, he still found time to teach, correspond by mail, hear Confessions, provide spiritual direction, visit the sick, and pray three Rosaries a day.
Publish date: 2019 - 1 - 19