Christmas Novena to the Christ Child – Day Six – 21 December

Christmas Novena to the Christ Child – Day Six – 21 December

Day Six
God’s Mercy Revealed In His Coming Down From Heaven To Save Us.

Saint Paul says, “The goodness and kindness of God, our Saviour, has appeared.”
When the Son of God made Man appearedon earth, then was it seen how great is God’s goodness towards us.
Saint Bernard says that first of God’s power was manifested in the creation of the world
and His wisdom in its conservation
but His merciful goodness was especially manifested later in His taking human nature on Himself,
in order to save fallen mankind by His sufferings and death.
For what greater proof of His kindness towards us could the Son of God show us,
than in taking on Himself the punishment we had deserved?

See Him as a weak, newborn infant, wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.
Unable to move or feed Himself, He has need of Mary to give Him a little milk to sustain His life.
Or see Him again in Pilate’s courtyard, tied with fast bonds to a column and there scourged from head to foot.
Behold Him on the way to Calvary, falling down from weakness under weight of the cross that He must carry.
Finally behold Him nailed to this tree of shame, on which He breathes His last amid pain and anguish.
Because Jesus Christ wished that His love for us should win all the love of our hearts for Himself,
He would not send an angel to redeem us but chose to come Himself, to save us by His Passion and death.
Had an angel been our redeemer, men would have had to divide their hearts
in loving God as their Creator and an angel as their redeemer;
but God, who desires men’s whole hearts, as He was already their Creator, wished also to be their Redeemer.

O my Dear Redeemer! ]
Where should I be now, if You had not borne with me so patiently
but had called me from life while I was in the state of sin?
Since You have waited for me till now, forgive me quickly, O my Jesus,
before death finds me still guilty of so many offenses
that I have committed against You.
I am so sorry for having vilely despised You, my sovereign Good,
that I could die of grief.
But You can not abandon a soul that seeks You.
If hitherto, I have forsaken You,
I now seek You and love You.
Yes, my God, I love You above all else;
I love You more than myself.
Help me, Lord, to love You always during the rest of my life.
Nothing else do I seek of You.
But this I beg of You, this I hope to receive from You.
Mary, my hope, do you pray for me.
If you pray for me, I am sure of grace. AmenDAY SIX NOVENA TO THE CHRIST CHILD - 21 DEC 2017

Posted in ADVENT, DOCTORS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, ON the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day from Pope Benedict– 21 December – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church

Thought for the Day from Pope Benedict – 21 December – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church

Characteristic of St Canisius’ spirituality was his profound personal friendship with Jesus.   For example, on 4 September 1549 he wrote in his journal, speaking with the Lord:  “In the end, as if you were opening to me the heart of the Most Sacred Body, which it seemed to me I saw before me, you commanded me to drink from that source, inviting me, as it were, to draw the waters of my salvation from your founts, O my Saviour”.

Then he saw that the Saviour was giving him a garment with three pieces that were called peace, love and perseverance.   And with this garment, made up of peace, love and perseverance, Canisius carried out his work of renewing Catholicism.   His friendship with Jesus — which was the core of his personality — nourished by love of the Bible, by love of the Blessed Sacrament and by love of the Fathers, this friendship was clearly united with the awareness of being a perpetuator of the Apostles’ mission in the Church. And this reminds us that every genuine evangeliser is always an instrument united with Jesus and with His Church and is fruitful for this very reason.

Friendship with Jesus had been inculcated in St Peter Canisius in the spiritual environment of the Charterhouse of Cologne, in which he had been in close contact with two Carthusian mystics:  Johannes Lansperger, whose name has been Latinised as “Lanspergius” and Nikolaus van Esche, Latinized as “Eschius”.

He subsequently deepened the experience of this friendship, familiaritas stupenda nimis, through contemplation of the mysteries of Jesus’ life, which form a large part of St Ignatius’ Spiritual Exercises.   This is the foundation of his intense devotion to the Heart of the Lord, which culminated in his consecration to the apostolic ministry in the Vatican Basilica.

The Christocentric spirituality of St Peter Canisius is rooted in a profound conviction:  no soul anxious for perfection fails to practice prayer daily, mental prayer, an ordinary means that enables the disciple of Jesus to live in intimacy with the divine Teacher.

For this reason in his writings for the spiritual education of the people, our Saint insists on the importance of the Liturgy with his comments on the Gospels, on Feasts, on the Rite of Holy Mass and on the sacraments;  yet, at the same time, he is careful to show the faithful the need for and beauty of personal daily prayer, which should accompany and permeate participation in the public worship of the Church.

This exhortation and method have kept their value intact, especially after being authoritatively proposed anew by the Second Vatican Council in the Constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium:  Christian life does not develop unless it is nourished by participation in the Liturgy — particularly at Sunday Mass — and by personal daily prayer, by personal contact with God.

Among the thousands of activities and multiple distractions that surround us, we must find moments for recollection before the Lord every day, in order to listen to Him and speak with Him.

At the same time, the example that St Peter Canisius has bequeathed to us, not only in his works but especially with his life, is ever timely and of lasting value.   He teaches clearly that the apostolic ministry is effective and produces fruits of salvation in hearts only if the preacher is a personal witness of Jesus and an instrument at his disposal, bound to Him closely by faith in His Gospel and in His Church, by a morally consistent life and by prayer as ceaseless as love.  And this is true for every Christian who wishes to live his adherence to Christ with commitment and fidelity.    Thank you. (Pope Benedict XVI – GENERAL AUDIENCE, Paul VI Audience Hall, Wednesday, 9 February 2011).

St Peter Canisius, pray for us!

st peter canisius pray for us 2

And last year’s Thought for the Day is also inspiring –


Posted in ADVENT, DOCTORS of the Church, JESUIT SJ, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on SANCTITY, SAINT of the DAY, Uncategorized

Quote/s of the Day – 21 December – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church

Quote/s of the Day – 21 December – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church

“Such should be the shepherd
in the Church who, like Paul,
becomes all things to all men,
so that the sick may find healing in him;
the sad, joy;
the desperate, hope;
the ignorant, instruction;
those in doubt, advice;
the penitent, forgiveness and comfort
and finally, everyone,
whatever is necessary, for salvation.
And so Christ, when He wished
to appoint the chief teachers
of the world and of the Church,
did not limit Himself to saying to his disciples:
‘You are the light of the world’;
but also added these words:
‘A city seated on a mountain cannot be hid.
Neither do men light a candle
and put it under a measure but upon a candlestick,
that it may shine to all who are in the house.’
Those churchmen err, who imagine,
that it is by brilliant preaching,
rather than by holiness of and all-embracing love,
they fulfil their office.
such should be - st peter canisius - 21 dec 2017

“If you have too much to do, with God’s help, you will find time to do it all.”

St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Churchif you have too much to do - st peter canisius - 21 dec

“Among the Jesuit saints, it is Peter Canisius
that brought me into the Society of Jesus…
as we go on, you will see, what influence
St Peter has had on this sinner. “

“(St Peter Canisius had) an extraordinary devotion
to the Holy Eucharist – his devotion to the Holy Sacrifice
were such that people would come from great distances
to watch him offer Mass, so devoutly did he celebrate.
He was one of the people that urged frequent Communion
at the Council of Trent and was one of those who got
the Council of Trent to pass a little known decree,
little known because it took almost three hundred years
for that decree to really come to life.
The Council of Trent, mind you, sixteenth century,
encouraged daily Communion – you would never guess it, would you?
Peter Canisius was one of those who, under instructions from Ignatius,
made sure that the Council passed that decree
and he spent hours before the Blessed Sacrament.”

Ven Servant of God Fr John A Hardon S.J. (1914-2000)st peter canisus had an - fr john a hardon - 21 dec 2017


One Minute Reflection – 21 December – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church

One Minute Reflection – 21 December – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church

God who is mighty,
has done great things for me,
holy is his name…….Luke 1:49Luke 1 - 49

REFLECTION – “While remaining the Mother of our Judge, Mary is a mother to us, full of mercy.   She constitutes our protection.   She keeps us close to Christ and she faithfully takes the matter of our salvation into her charge.”……………….St Peter Canisiuswhile remaining the mother of our judge - st peter canisius - 2016 image

PRAYER – Heavenly Father, You have filled Mary with grace and made her a Co-Meaditrix with Christ Your Son.   Grant that I may have constant recourse to her and attain the salvation she helped win for the world.   St Peter Canisius, you lived a life of total and full dedication to our Father, to His divine Son and his holy and most blessed mother and in complete openness to the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.   Please pray for us that as you were strengthened in sanctity and doctrine for the defence and growth of the Catholic faith, every seeker of truth may have the joy of finding our God and that all Catholics may persevere and grow in love and zeal for the one true faith. amen.canisius-pray-for-us - 2016


Our Morning Offering – 21 December – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius (1521-1397) Doctor of the Church

Our Morning Offering – 21 December – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church

May I Be United With You, Good Jesus
St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church

Let my eyes take their sleep
but may my heart always
keep watch for You.
May Your right hand bless Your servants
who love You.
May I be united with the praise
that flows from You, Lord Jesus,
to all your saints;
united with the gratitude
drawn from Your heart, good Jesus,
that causes Your saints to thank You;
united with Your passion, good Jesus,
by which You took away our guilt;
united with the divine longing
that You had on earth, for our salvation;
united with every prayer
that welled from Your divine heart, good Jesus
and flowed into the hearts of Your saints.
Amenmay I be united with you good jesus - st peter canisius sj



Thursday of the Third Week of Advent – 21 December

Thursday of the Third Week of Advent – 21 December
“The Lord is at hand, come let us adore Him.”

My beloved speaks and says to me:
“Arise, my love, my fair one,
and come away;
for lo, the winter is past,
the rain is over and gone…”...Song of Solomon 2:10-11

Our God loves us – with “enduring love.”
Our God is in a relationship with us that is faithful, forgiving, healing.
Let us accept it, surrender to its power, and feel the joy
and freedom growing in our hearts.

I will praise you, Lord, for you have rescued me... Psalm. 30

Today’s Daily Reflection – Intercessions:
Christ is the wisdom and power of God and His delight is to
be with the children of men. With confidence, let us pray:
Draw near us, Lord.
Lord Jesus Christ, You have called us to Your glorious kingdom,
– make us walk worthily, pleasing God in all we do.
You who stand unknown among us,
– reveal yourself to men and women.
You are nearer to us than we to ourselves,
– strengthen our faith and our hope of salvation.
You are the source of holiness,
– keep us holy and without sin now and until the day
of Your coming.

O Radiant Dawn,
splendour of eternal light, sun of justice:
come and shine on those
who dwell in darkness and in the
shadow of deatho radiant dawn - 21 dec 2017

Closing Prayer:
God of salvation,
You promise us strength
and courage in our lives
if only I ask.
You forgive me
and touch me with Your enduring love.
My past life does not matter.
You have forgiven me
and You love me with such tenderness.
As I ponder the blessings of the days ahead,
and am so grateful for Your forgiveness,
I ask to feel the jubilation and song
break out in my life today.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!
May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.thursday of the third week of advent - 21 dec 2017




Saint of the Day – 21 December – St Peter Canisius S.J. (1521-1397) – Doctor of the Church

Saint of the Day – 21 December – St Peter Canisius S.J. (1521-1397) – Priest, Religious, Doctor of the Church, Reformer, Teacher, Confessor, Writer, Apostle of Charity –  (Born as Pieter Kanis on 8 May 1521 at Niemguen, Netherlands – 21 December 1597 at Fribourg, Switzerland of natural causes).   Patronages – Catholic Press, Germany, Catechists.   Known as the Hammer of Protestantism and the Second Apostle of Germany.   St Peter  became known for his strong support for the Catholic faith during the Protestant Reformation in Germany, Austria, Bohemia, Moravia and Switzerland.   The restoration of the Catholic Church in Germany after the Protestant Reformation is largely attributed to the work there of the Society of Jesus, which he led.   “Peter Canisius was the first publisher, the first author, the first editor of the Society of Jesus.   By now, Jesuits have followed in his footsteps to the tune of having published in 400 years, thousands of books.   From the time of Canisius, and his name is first in the bibliography of Jesuit writers, from Peter Canisius to the end of the l9th century, that is to 1900, there are about twenty volumes of bibliography, each volume about two inches thick, stands about eighteen inches high, filled just with authors and titles, thousands and thousands and thousands, no other religious institute in the Church publishes as much as members of the Society.   It was all started by Peter Canisius.” (Ven Servan of God Fr John A Hardon S.J.)

canisius - large

St Peter Canisius was born in 1521 in what is now the Netherlands.   His father was the local mayor and his mother died shortly of his birth.  Peter studied at the University of Cologne and earned a Master’s degree in 1540 at the age of 19.   While there, he met St Peter Faber, one of the first Jesuits.   Through him, Canisius became the first Dutchman to join the Society of Jesus in 1543.   St Peter Canisius’ preaching and writings, led him to become one of the most influential Catholics of his time.   He supervised the founding and maintenance of the first German-speaking Jesuit colleges and was known as the Second Apostle of Germany.

If you have too much to do, with God’s help you will find time to do it all – St Peter Canisius

For a half-century he led the Catholic Reformation in Austria, Bavaria and Bohemia.   For that reason he is reckoned an apostle to Germany, second only to St. Boniface.   With stupendous energy he preached and taught in parishes, reformed and founded universities, wrote many books including popular catechisms, restored lapsed Catholics, converted Protestants, preached retreats and found time to care for the sick.   In his last 30 years travelling more than 20,000 miles on foot or horseback, St Peter Canisius spearheaded the renewal of the Catholic faith in southern Germany.Saint_Petrus_Canisius

Peter Canisius revitalised Catholic life and teaching at universities in Ingolstadt and Augsburg.   He founded new ones at Prague and Fribourg.   In all four cities his preaching and catechising won the hearts of Catholics and attracted nominal Protestants to the church.   In Vienna his personal care for plague victims made him a most popular figure.  Thus, when appointed diocesan administrator, he was in a position to revive the city’s long decadent Catholic community.

After 1555, Peter Canisius published his famous Summary of Christian Doctrine and two smaller catechisms.   These books generated the Catholic Reformation as Luther’s catechism had spread Protestantism.   Canisius’s catechisms also helped launch the Catholic press.    The Three Catechisms he compiled between 1555 and 1558.   The first Catechism was addressed to students who could grasp the elementary notions of theology;  the second, to young people of the populace for an initial religious instruction;  the third, to youth with a scholastic formation of middle and high school levels.   He explained Catholic doctrine with questions and answers, concisely, in biblical terms, with great clarity and with no polemical overtones.   “There were at least 200 editions of this Catechism in his lifetime alone, translated into 15 languages!   And hundreds of editions succeeded one another until the 20th century.   So it was that still in my father’s generation people in Germany were calling the Catechism simply “the Canisius”.   He really was the Catechist of Germany for centuries, he formed people’s faith for centuries.” (Pope Benedict XVI).

He was offered the post of Bishop of Vienna in 1554 but declined in to continue his travelling and teachings.


In the late 16th century, when open hostility typified relations between Catholics and Protestants, Peter Canisius advised charity and moderation. He opposed theological debates with Protestant leaders and in general, discouraged discussion of Catholic distinctives such as indulgences, purgatory and monastic vows with Protestants.   He believed such efforts only heightened division and embittered relations.   He articulated his views in this letter to his Jesuit superior:

“It is plainly wrong to meet non-Catholics with bitterness or to treat them with discourtesy.   For this is nothing else than the reverse of Christ’s example because it breaks the bruised reed and quenches the smoking flax.   We ought to instruct with meekness those whom heresy has made bitter and suspicious and has estranged from orthodox Catholics, especially from our fellow Jesuits.   Thus, by whole-hearted charity and good will we may win them over to us in the Lord.

Again, it is a mistaken policy to behave in a contentious fashion and to start disputes about matters of belief with argumentative people who are disposed by their very natures to wrangling.   Indeed, the fact of their being so constituted is a reason the more why such people should be attracted and won to the simplicity of the faith as much by example as by argument.”

In 1591, Peter Canisius suffered a stroke that nearly killed him.   But he recovered and devoted himself to writing for six more years until his death in 1597.   His body was interred before the high altar of the Church of Saint Nicholas in Fribourg and his relics were translated to the Church of Saint Michael at the Jesuit College in Fribourg in 1625. He was Canonised 21 May 1925 by Pope Pius XI and was added to the now 36 Doctors of the Church, by Pope Pius XI in 1925.SOD-1221-SaintPeterCanisius-790x480Petrus Canisius / Gemaelde - Petrus Canisius / Painting -

Posted in ADVENT, SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 21 December

St Peter Canisius S.J. (1521-1397) Doctor of the Church (Optional Memorial)

Bl Adrian of Dalmatia
St Anastasius II of Antioch
St Anrê Tran An Dung
Bl Anton Durcovici
St Baudacarius of Bobbio
St Beornwald of Bampton
Bl Bezela of Göda
Bl Daniel of the Annunciation
St Dioscorus
St Festus of Tuscany
St Glycerius of Nicomedia
St James of Valencia
St John of Tuscany
St John Vincent
St Micah the Prophet
St Phêrô Truong Van Thi
St Severinus of Trèves
Bl Sibrand of Marigård
St Themistocles of Lycia