Posted in PURGATORY

HOW TO AVOID PURGATORY By Fr Paul O’Sullivan O.P.

HOW TO AVOID PURGATORY By Fr. Paul O’Sullivan O.P.

For those who have not read this little book and to refresh myself, I will be posting the entire book in daily doses.  (To read later find in the Purgatory Category).

Chapter 1

CAN WE AVOID PURGATORY?     YES.

Many think that it is practically impossible for the ordinary Christian to
avoid Purgatory.   Go there we all must–so they say.

They laughingly remark: “It will be well for us if we ever get there” Alas!
When too late they will recognise how terribly rash their words were.   As a
consequence of such fatalistic ideas, many make no serious effort to avoid
Purgatory, or even to lessen the term they may have to pass there.   Thank
God all do not hold such gloomy views.

WE SHALL STRIVE IN THE FOLLOWING PAGES TO SHOW

a) How all can notably shorten their period of expiation in Purgatory; b)
And how they may even avoid Purgatory altogether.   These pages are well
worth reading and re-reading.   The fact is that a great number of souls go
to Purgatory and remain there for long years simply because they had never
been told how they could have avoided it.

The means we suggest are easy, practical and within the reach of all.
Moreover, far from being irksome, the use of these means will only serve to
make our lives on this earth holier and happier and will take away the
exaggerated fear of death which terrifies so many.

We ask you, Dear Reader, to put this little booklet into the hands of all
your friends.   You cannot do them a greater service.

chapter-one

 

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Posted in MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 18 February

Thought for the Day – 18 February

Faithful to the promises he made as a Dominican, to preach the Gospel after having contemplated it in prayer, Fra Angelico put his creativity at the disposal of the Lord.   With brush and paint in hand, he used his talents to transmit to all people the sublimity and the redemptive strength of the divine mysteries.

Between 1425 and 1447, Fra Angelico carried out his activity for the Dominican convents and other ecclesiastical institutes at Fiesole, Florence (most especially at the convent of San Marco), Cortona and Orvieto.   The fame of his genius merited him the esteem of the Sovereign Pontiffs Eugenio IV and Nicolas V, who contracted him for the task of frescoing several rooms in the Vatican Palace (1445-49).

Fra Angelico died on February 18, 1455, in the convent of Santa Maria Sopra Minerva in Rome and was buried in the adjoining Basilica, where his body was covered by a simple slab on which was carved his portrait.   With a personality that was uncomplicated and clear, Brother Giovanni had lived a poor and humble life, refusing honours and positions.

The virtue and the profound religious spirit which characterized the life of this artist and Dominican is reflected in his spirituality, his purity and the luminosity of his art.   Even before his official recognition as a blessed of the Church, he had been given by the faithful the title “Beato Angelico.”   In a moving ceremony on October 18, 1984, Pope John Paul II, on his knees in front of Fra Angelico’s tomb, proclaimed him solemnly to be the universal patron of all artists.

The Incarnation was one of Fra Angelico’s favourite themes and he painted over 25 variations of it.   His painted meditations, so needed at the time of the early Renaissance, are still necessary today.   God became man to bring us closer to Himself by way of all things human.   He makes all things new by fashioning them into possible vehicles of grace for us, so that by visible realities and concrete concepts, we can arrive at an understanding and a love of higher, invisible realities, all leading to God Himself.  Without art our lives would be much depleted. L   et us pray for artists today, especially those who can lift our hearts and minds to God that the Lord may come to them and guide their hands.

Blessed Fra Angelico, Pray for us!

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Posted in ART DEI, MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY

Quote of the Day – 18 February

Quote/s of the Day – 18 February

Theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar said Angelico’s art embodies the motto of the Dominican Order contemplata aliis tradere, that is,
“communicating to others the contemplated mysteries”.
Another writer expressed a similar judgment: fece teologia dipingendo la bellezza, che mostrò la luce del Risorto nelle creature da lui redente: “he did theology by painting the beauty that shows the light of the Risen Christ in creatures”.

Author of the Lives of the Artists – Vasari – wrote of Fra Angelico that “it is impossible to bestow too much praise on this holy father, who was so humble and modest in all that he did and said and whose pictures were painted with such facility and piety.”

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Posted in MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 18 February

One Minute Reflection – 18 February

Well done you are an industrious
and reliable servant…… Come share
your master’s joy…………Matthew 25:21

REFLECTION – “In God’s house we must try to
accept whatever job he gives us:
cook, kitchen boy, waiter, stable boy or baker.
For we know that our reward depends not
on the job itself but on the faithfulness
with which we serve God.”……..Pope John Paul I
Fra Angelico’s painting was the fruit of the great harmony between a holy life and the creative power with which he had been endowed………St John Paul

PRAYER – O God, in Your providence You inspired blessed Fra Angelico to portray the beauty and sweetness of heaven. By his prayers and the example of his virtues, grant that we may manifest this splendour to our brothers and sisters. Blessed Angelico, pray for us! Through Christ our Lord, amen.

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Posted in MORNING Prayers, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning Offering – 18 February

Our Morning Offering – 18 February

Excerpt from the ‘Universal Prayer’ – attributed to Pope Clement XI

Lord, I believe in You: increase my faith.
I trust in You: strengthen my trust.
I love You: let me love You more and more.
I am sorry for my sins: deepen my sorrow.

I worship You as my first beginning,
I long for You as my last end,
I praise You as my constant helper,
And call on You as my loving protector.

Guide me by Your wisdom,
Correct me with Your justice,
Comfort me with Your mercy,
Protect me with Your power.

I offer You, Lord, my thoughts: to be fixed on You;
My words: to have You for their theme;
My actions: to reflect my love for You;
My sufferings: to be endured for Your greater glory.

Grant this through Christ our Lord, amen.

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Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 18 February – Blessed FRA ANGELICO

Saint of the Day – 18 February – Blessed FRA ANGELICO O.P. (1395-1455 aged 59) – Patron of Artists.

Fra Angelico was an Early Italian Renaissance painter described by Vasari in his Lives of the Artists as having “a rare and perfect talent”.

He was known to contemporaries as Fra Giovanni da Fiesole (Brother John of Fiesole) and Fra Giovanni Angelico (Angelic Brother John). In modern Italian he is called il Beato Angelico (Blessed Angelic One); the common English name Fra Angelico means the “Angelic friar”.

In 1982 Pope John Paul II proclaimed his beatification in recognition of the holiness of his life, thereby making the title of “Blessed” official. Fiesole is sometimes misinterpreted as being part of his formal name, but it was merely the name of the town where he took his vows as a Dominican friar and was used by contemporaries to separate him from others who were also known as Fra Giovanni. He is listed in the Roman Martyrology as Beatus Ioannes Faesulanus, cognomento Angelicus—”Blessed Giovanni of Fiesole, surnamed ‘the Angelic’ “.

Fra Angelico is probably better known as an artist than as a holy man. He was already called “Beato” while he was still alive. Pope John Paul II gave this a new reality when he beatified him in 1982. Patrick Duffy tells his story.

Early life
Born Guido di Pietro at Vicchio, 25 kms north-east of Florence, also the birth place of Giotto, in his childhood he was known as Guido da Vicchio or Guido di Pietro.   He may have been already a painter before he and his brother Benedetto joined the Dominicans at Fiesole.

At Fiesole 1418-35
After his novitiate at Cortona he went to live at the Dominican convent at Fiesole.   As a young friar, he worked at illuminating missals and manuscripts.   He became known to his companions as Fra Giovanni da Fiesole but later more popularly – even within his own lifetime in Italy – he was called Il Beato Angelico.

San Marco, Florence (1436-45)
In 1436 Fra Angelico was one of a number of the monks from Fiesole who moved into the newly-built monastery of San Marco in Florence.   This not only put him in the centre of artistic activity but also engaged the patronage of the wealthy and powerful Cosimo de’ Medici, who often came there himself when he wanted to retreat from the world.

According to his biographer Giorgio Vasari (1511-74), it was at Cosimo’s urging that Fra Angelico undertook the task of decorating the monastery, including the magnificent Chapter House fresco, the often-reproduced Annunciation, the Maesta with Saints Cosmas and Damian, Saint Mark and Saint John, Saint Lawrence and three Dominicans, Saint Dominic, Saint Thomas Aquinas and Saint Peter Martyr.

The Vatican and Orvieto, 1445–1449
bl Sacrament and fra angIn 1445 Pope Eugenius IV (1431-47), who knew the artist’s work in Florence, summoned Angelico to Rome to paint the frescoes of the Chapel of the Holy Sacrament at St Peter’s but this was destroyed a century later when Pope Paul III (Alessandro Farnese 1534-49) wanted to make room for the great staircase of the Vatican Palace.   Vasari says that at this time Eugenius offered Fra Angelico the archbishopric of Florence, but that he refused it, recommending another friar for the position.

In 1447 when the papal court moved to the comparative cool of Orvieto Fra Angelico worked with his pupil, Benozzo Gozzoli, on the vault of the chapel of the Madonna of St Brizio in the cathedral.

In 1449 back at the Vatican, he designed the famous fresco scenes from the lives of St. Laurence and St. Stephen for the walls of the Chapel of Nicholas V.   From 1449 until 1452, Fra Angelico was back at San Marco in Florence, where he was prior for three years.

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The Transfiguration shows the directness, simplicity and restrained palette typical of these frescoes. Located in a monk’s cell at the Convent San’ Marco, its apparent purpose is to encourage private devotion.

Death and influence
In 1455 Fra Angelico died while staying at a Dominican Convent in Rome, perhaps working on Pope Nicholas’ Chapel. His tomb can be seen in the Church of Santa Maria sopra Minerva in the centre of Rome. And this is his epitaph:

When singing my praise, do not say I was another Apelles.
But say that, in the name of Christ, I gave all I had to the poor.
Part of my work remains on earth and part is in heaven.
The city that bore me, Giovanni, is the flower of Tuscany.

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Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saints 18 February

St Angilbert of Centula
St Colman of Lindisfarne
St Constance of Vercelli
St Esuperia of Vercelli
St Ethelina
Bl Fra Angelico
St Gertrude Caterina Comensoli
St Helladius of Toledo
St Ioannes Chen Xianheng
St Ioannes Zhang Tianshen
St Jean-François-Régis Clet
St Jean-Pierre Néel
Bl Jerzy Kaszyra
Bl John Pibush – one of the Martyrs of Douai
St Leo of Patera
St Martinus Wu Xuesheng
Bl Matthew Malaventino
St Paregorius of Patara
St Sadoth of Seleucia
St Simeon
St Tarasius of Constantinople
St Theotonius
Bl William Harrington

Martyrs in North Africa – 7 saints
Martyrs of Rome – 5 saints