Posted in JESUIT SJ, MORNING Prayers

The Present Moment is the Only Real Moment

The Present Moment is the Only Real Moment

“The spiritual life always concerns itself with the present.
Retreatants are very inclined to worry about the future and be guilty about the past.
It is important to set goals for the future and to implement ways to achieve those goals.
It is also important to review the past, claim the history of grace and sin and more grace.
But the PRESENT MOMENT is the only real moment…………….live in the NOW moment because the present is the ONLY moment of grace.”…….Fr Bill Creed SJ

Say goodbye
to golden yesterdays
……….or your heart
will never learn
to love
the present.

Fr Anthony de Mello SJ “Wellsprings”

Pause in your activities today – perhaps when you are in the car, or between meetings, or busy doing ‘mother’ things that leave you mindless – and be STILL in the present moment of grace.   This is the beginnings of contemplative prayer.

say goodbye - fr anthony de mello


Thought for the Day – 16 May

Thought for the Day – 16 May

“What seems to shine forth especially in the life of Andrew Bobola is his Catholic faith, whose vigour, nourished by divine grace, grew so much stronger with the passing of the years that it conferred on him a special mark of distinction, and spurred him on to undergo his martyrdom with courage.
But the Catholic Church, particularly in the countries to the East, was facing an extremely grave crisis owing to the efforts of the schismatics, who were striving by every device to draw the faithful away from the unity of the Church into their own errors. Andrew went, therefore, into those regions on the instruction and command of his Superiors and by public sermons and private instruction through their cities, towns and villages and most of all by the fervour of his exceptional holiness and the burning zeal of his apostolate, he freed the wavering faith of a multitude of Christians from beguiling falsehood, brought them back to sound principles, and joyfully invited all he could to return to the one fold of Jesus Christ.
He did not merely restore and strengthen the faith of the Christians, languishing and on the verge of collapse but roused them also to weep for their own sins, to settle their disputes, to heal their divisions, to restore true morality. It seemed that, like his Divine Master, wherever he passed by doing good, a new spring blossomed forth, bright with heavenly flowers and fruits of salvation.    Consequently, as tradition has it, he received from all, even from the schismatics, the significant title of “Hunter of Souls.”
This tireless apostle of Jesus Christ had lived by faith, had spread the faith and had defended the faith; so too, he did not hesitate to die for the faith of his fathers.”
INVICTI ATHLETAE (On St. Andrew Bobola)
(Venerable) Pope Pius XII
Encyclical Promulgated on 16 May 1957

Do you find yourself persecuted, in trouble, disliked and maligned because you live by and defend the Faith?    But this is our mission – we do not live according to the instructions of our Divine Master, unless we ‘go forth and spread the good news’.   If we miss a single opportunity to live and speak the truth, we may well be responsible for the eternal damnation of a soul – what a frightening thought!

St Andrew Bobola, inspire us with your zeal for souls and please Pray for us!

st andrew bobola pray for us.jpg 2


Quote of the Day – 16 May

Quote of the Day – 16 May

…..”the Polish Martyr rose to the heights of the noblest triumphs which the Church commemorates. Andrew was asked if he were a priest of the Latin rite, and he replied:

‘I am a Catholic priest.  I was born in the Catholic faith.  In that faith I wish to die.    My faith is true; it leads to salvation.    Do you rather repent; give place to sorrow for sin, else you will be unable, in your errors, to win salvation.    By embracing my faith, you will acknowledge the true God and will save your souls’.

St Andrew Bobola SJ

At these words, those wicked men, utterly devoid of humanity, were roused to a fiendish barbarity and reached such a degree of cruelty that they inflicted still more horrible sufferings on the soldier of Christ.   Once again, “he was scourged, a crown like that of Jesus Christ was bound about his head, he was struck heavy blows and lay wounded by a scimitar.   Next, his right eye was gouged out, strips of skin were torn off, his wounds were savagely scorched and rubbed with prickly bundles of straw.   Nor was that enough: his ears, nose and lips were cut off, his tongue torn out by the root and finally, a weapon plunged into his heart.   And, at long last, the valiant athlete, three hours after midday, displaying a truly marvelous example of fortitude, was pierced by a sword and achieved the glory of martyrdom.” ……………….Venerable Pope Pius XII – INVICTI ATHLETAE (On St. Andrew Bobola) Encyclical Promulgated on 16 May 1957

i am a Catholic priest - st andrew bobola

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

One Minute Reflection – 16 May

One Minute Reflection – 16 May

Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you [falsely] because of me.    Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven…………..Matthew 5:11-12

REFLECTION – “The mind shudders as it recalls all the tortures which the athlete of Jesus Christ endured with unconquerable fortitude and a faith resolute and unbroken……..We do not think this filled him with fear but rather with a heavenly joy.    For We know that he had always prayed for martyrdom and had often recalled these words of the Divine Redeemer..”………Venerable Pope Pius XII

ven pope pius xII on st andrew bobola sj

PRAYER – Gracious Lord, help me too to be an apostle of zeal and a ‘hunter of souls’. For I know that is through Your grace and by that grace manifest in my life that I may reach out and help all those around me. Grant me Lord, the courage and zeal of St Andrew Bobola, who I now request for his intercessionary prayers, on behalf of all Your Holy Church. Amen

st andrew bobola pray for us


Our Morning Offering – 16 May

Our Morning Offering – 16 May

(Bishop of Auxerre)

Most Holy Virgin!
Who art the greatest consolation
that I receive from God,
you who are the heavenly dew
which assuages all my pains,
you who are the light of my soul
when it is enveloped in darkness,
you who are my guide in unknown paths,
the support of my weakness,
my treasure in poverty,
my remedy in sickness,
my consolation in trouble,
my refuge in misery,
and the hope of my salvation,
hear my supplications,
have pity on me,
as becomes the Mother of so good a God,
and obtain for me a favourable reception
of all my petitions at the throne of mercy. Amen

most holy virgin - st germanus

Posted in JESUIT SJ, MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 16 May – St Andrew Bobola SJ

Saint of the Day – 16 May – St Andrew Bobola SJ (1591-1657) Martyr, Priest, Missionary, known as the Apostle of Lithuania and the “Hunter of Souls.”.   Born Andrzej Bobola – Patron of Poland and the Archdiocese of Warsaw. His body is incorrupt.

StAndreaBobola16-5 (1)

Bobola was born in 1591 into a noble family in the Sandomir Palatinate in the Province of Lesser Poland of the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland, then a constituent part of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth.   In 1611 he entered the Society of Jesus in Vilnius, then in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the other part of the Commonwealth.   He subsequently professed solemn vows and was ordained in 1622, after which he served for several years as an advisor, preacher, Superior of a Jesuit residence, etc., in various places.

From 1652 Bobola also worked as a country “missionary”, in various locations of Lithuania:  these included Polotsk, where he was probably stationed in 1655 and also Pinsk, (both now in Belarus).   On 16 May 1657, during the Khmelnytsky Uprising, he was captured in the village of Janów (now Ivanava, Belarus) by the Cossacks of Bohdan Chmielnicki and, after being subjected to a variety of tortures, andrew bobola sj

One description of Bobola’s death written in 1865 states:

“In the same year, the Cossacks surprised a holy Polish Jesuit, in the town of Pinsk and conferred on him the palm of martyrdom, on the 16th of May, 1657.   Father Andrew Bobola, …had just offered up the holy sacrifice, when a horde of Cossacks attacked the town.   On beholding the barbarians, Father Bobola fell upon his knees, raised his eyes and his hands toward heaven, and, having a presentiment that his hour had arrived, exclaimed, “Lord, thy will be done!”   At that moment, the Cossacks rushed upon him, stripped him of his holy habit, tied him to a tree, placed a crown upon his head, …after which they scourged him, tore out one of his eyes, burned his body with torches, and one of the ruffians traced, with his poignard, the form of a tonsure on the head of the venerable Father and on his back the figure of a chasuble!   To do this, the executioner had to strip off the skin of the holy martyr!   But this was not yet all.   The fingers of the apostle had received the priestly unction.   The executioner tore from them the skin and forced needles under his nails!   And during this indescribable torture, the hero prayed for his tormentors;  he preached, both by word and example, until the schismatics tore out his tongue and crushed his head.   Father Andrew Bobola, whom the Church declared Blessed, the 30th of October, 1853, was sixty-five years of age.”388px-st andrew Bobola

Bobola’s body was originally buried in the Jesuit church in Pinsk.   It was later moved to their church in Polotsk.   By the beginning of the 18th century, however, nobody knew where Bobola’s body was buried.   In 1701 Father Martin Godebski, S.J., the Rector of the Pinsk College, reputedly had a vision of Bobola.   This caused him to order a search for the body.   It was found completely incorrupt, which was recognized by the Church and its supporters as proof of holiness.   In 1719 the casket was officially reopened and the body inspected by qualified medical personnel (five physicians and pharmacists).   It was reportedly still completely incorrupt: pliable and with soft flesh.

In 1922, the Bolsheviks moved the corpse, later described by an American journalist as “remarkably well-preserved” to the Museum of Hygiene of People’s Commissioners of Health in Moscow.   The whereabouts of the remains was not known to the Catholic authorities and Pope Pius XI charged the Papal Famine Relief Mission in Russia, headed by American Jesuit Father Edmund A. Walsh, with the task of locating and “rescuing” them.    In October 1923—as a kind of “pay” for help during famine—the remains were released to Walsh and his Assistant Director, Father Louis J. Gallagher, S.J.   Well packed by the two Jesuits, they were delivered to the Holy See by Gallagher on All Saints’ Day (1 November) 1923.   In May 1924, the relics were installed in Rome’s Church of the Gesù, the main church of the Society of Jesus.

Since 17 June 1938 the body has been venerated at a shrine in Warsaw, with an arm remaining at the original shrine in Rome.

Declared Blessed by Pope Pius IX on 30 October 1853, Bobola was canonised by Pope Pius XI on 17 April 1938.   His feast day was originally celebrated by the Jesuits on 23 May but it is now generally celebrated on 16 May.   On his feast day in 2002, Pope John Paul II declared Bobola a patron saint of Poland and of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Warsaw.

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saints – 16 May

St Abdas of Cascar
Bl Adam of Adami
Bl Adam of San Sabine
St Andrew Bobola
St Annobert of Séez
St Aquilinus of Isauria
St Brendan the Navigator
St Carantac
St Carantoc
St Diocletian of Osimo
St Felix of Uzalis
St Fidolus of Aumont
St Fiorenzo of Osimo
St Fort of Bordeaux
St Francoveus
St Gennadius of Uzalis
St Germerius of Toulouse
St Hilary of Pavia
St Honorius of Amiens
Bl Louis of Mercy
St Margaret Of Cortona
St Maxima of Fréjus
Bl Michal Wozniak
St Peregrinus of Auxerre
St Peregrinus of Terni
St Possidius of Calama
St Primael of Quimper
St Simon Stock
St Ubaldus Baldassini
St Victorian of Isauria
Bl Valdimir Ghika

Martyrs of Saint Sabas: A group of monks, whose names have not come down to us, who were massacred by Moors at the monastery of Saint Sabas in Palestine.