Lenten Reflection – 14 March 2018 – – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent

Lenten Reflection – 14 March 2018 – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent

Isaiah 49:8-15, Psalms 145:8-9, 13-14, 17-18, John 5:17-30

Isaiah 49:13 – “For the Lord has comforted his people and will have compassion on his afflicted.”

John 5:28-29 – “…. for the hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come forth, those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of judgement.”

As we approach the end of the Lenten journey, the tone becomes darker and we can feel the crises approaching.
Today’s first reading is a lovely one, Israel’s God promising that all is going to be well “I shall answer you” and “they shall find food on all the bare places.”   And there is a beautiful image of God as mother, utterly incapable of forgetting Israel.   Notice however, that Israel is feeling forgotten, they are hungry and thirsty and in desolate places and in darkness.

These dark tones return in today’s gospel, which continues from yesterday.   Jesus here lays His cards on the table and states plainly and simply, His intimate relationship with the One whom He calls Father and precisely because of who He is – He incurs now the homicidal wrath of His opponents.

We need to be clear this Lent, NOW and forever, about who we think Jesus is – and KNOW that what we believe, will bring the same response – hostility, ire, persecution even hatred!   For it is literally – it is very important to be aware of this – a matter of life and death!

But, “the one who hears my word and believes the One who sent me, has eternal life”. There is Resurrection here but there is also first death.

We must choose our sides NOW!   Now is the time!…(Fr Nicholas King SJ – Reflections for Lent)

Am I ready?
Have I chosen my side?
Am I prepared?

“There was once a good Trappist Father, who was trembling all over at perceiving the approach of death.   Someone said to him, “Father, of what then are you afraid?”   “Of the judgement of God,” he said. “Ah! if you dread the judgement–you who have done so much penance, you who love God so much, who have been so long preparing for death–what will become of me?”

See, my children, to die well we must live well;  to live well, we must seriously examine ourselves:  every evening think over what we have done during the day; at the end of each week review what we have done during the week;  at the end of each month review what we have done during the month;  at the end of the year, what we have done during the year.   By this means, my children, we cannot fail to correct ourselves and to become fervent Christians in a short time.   Then, when death comes, we are quite ready; we are happy to go to Heaven.”St John Vianney (1786-1859) lenten reflection - wed of the 4th week - 14 march 2018

I have nothing, O my Saviour and my God!

I have nothing, O my Saviour and my God!
I have nothing which can be pleasing unto Thee;
I can do nothing,
I am nothing
but I have a heart
and this is enough for me.
Health, honour and life itself
may be taken from me
but no man can rob me of my heart.
I have a heart and with this heart I can love Thee,
O my Saviour Jesus, worthy of all adoration!
And with this heart,
it is my determination to love You
and always I resolve to love Thee,
only to love Thee always.

Father John Croiset SJi have nothing o my saviour and my god - fr croiset sj - 14 march 2018


Novena to St Joseph – Day Five

Novena to St Joseph

Day Five
Saint Joseph, God has appointed you patron of the Catholic Church because you were the head of the Holy Family, the starting-point of the Church.   You were the father, protector, guide and support of the Holy Family.   For that reason you belong in a particular way to the Church, which was the purpose of the Holy Family’s existence.

I believe that the Church is the family of God on earth.   Its government is represented in priestly authority which consists above all in its power over the true Body of Christ, really present in the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar, thus continuing Christ’s life in the Church.   From this power, too, comes authority over the Mystical Body of Christ, the members of the Church — the power to teach and govern souls, to reconcile them with God, to bless them and to pray for them.

You have a special relationship to the priesthood because you possessed a wonderful power over our Saviour Himself.   Your life and office were of a priestly function and are especially connected with the Blessed Sacrament.   To some extent you were the means of bringing the Redeemer to us — as it is the priest’s function to bring Him to us in the Mass — for you reared Jesus, supported, nourished, protected and sheltered Him.   You were prefigured by the patriarch Joseph, who kept supplies of wheat for his people.   But how much greater than he were you!   Joseph of old gave the Egyptians mere bread for their bodies.   You nourished and with the most tender care, preserved for the Church, Him who is the Bread of Heaven and who gives eternal life in Holy Communion.

God has appointed you patron of the Church because the glorious title of patriarch also falls by special right to you.   The patriarchs were the heads of families of the Chosen People and theirs was the honour to prepare for the Savior’s incarnation.   You belonged to this line of patriarchs, for you were one of the last descendants of the family of David and one of the nearest forebears of Christ according to the flesh.   As husband of Mary, the Mother of God, and as the foster-father of the Saviour, you were directly connected with Christ.  Your vocation was especially concerned with the Person of Jesus;  your entire activity centred about Him.   You are, therefore, the closing of the Old Testament and the beginning of the New, which took its rise with the Holy Family of Nazareth. Because the New Testament surpasses the Old in every respect, you are the patriarch of patriarchs, the most venerable, exalted and amiable of all the patriarchs.

Through Mary, the Church received Christ and, therefore, the Church is indebted to her. But the Church owes her debt of gratitude and veneration to you also, for you were the chosen one who enabled Christ to enter into the world according to the laws of order and fitness.   It was by you that the patriarchs and the prophets and the faithful reaped the fruit of God’s promise.   Alone among them all, you saw with your own eyes and possessed the Redeemer promised to the rest of men.

Saint Joseph, I thank God for your privilege of being the Patron of the Church.   As a token of your own gratitude to God, obtain for me the grace to live always as a worthy member of this Church, so that through it I may save my soul.   Bless the priests, the religious and the laity of the Catholic Church, that they may ever grow in God’s love and faithfulness in His service.   Protect the Church from the evils of our day and from the persecution of her enemies, both within and without her.   Through your powerful intercession may the church successfully accomplish its mission in this world — the glory of God and the salvation of souls!

*(prayer to be said at the end of each day’s devotion)

Saint Joseph, I, your unworthy child, greet you.
You are the faithful protector and intercessor of all who love and venerate you.
You know that I have special confidence in you and that, after Jesus and Mary,
I place all my hope of salvation in you, for you are especially powerful with God
and will never abandon your faithful servants.
Therefore I humbly invoke you and commend myself,
with all who are dear to me and all that belong to me, to your intercession.
I beg of you, by your love for Jesus and Mary, not to abandon me during life
and to assist me at the hour of my death.
Glorious Saint Joseph, spouse of the Immaculate Virgin,
obtain for me a pure, humble, charitable mind
and perfect resignation to the divine Will.
Be my guide, my father and my model through life
that I may merit to die as you did in the arms of Jesus and Mary.
Loving Saint Joseph, faithful follower of Jesus Christ,
I raise my heart to you to implore your powerful intercession
in obtaining from the Divine Heart of Jesus all the graces necessary
for my spiritual and temporal welfare,
particularly the grace of a happy death and the special grace I now implore:
(Mention your request)
Guardian of the Word Incarnate, I feel confident that your prayers
on my behalf will be graciously heard before the throne of God.

Memorare to St Joseph

Remember, most pure spouse of Mary, ever Virgin,
my loving protector, Saint Joseph,
that no one ever had recourse to your protection
or asked for your aid without obtaining relief.
Confiding, therefore, in your goodness,
I come before you and humbly implore you.
Despise not my petitions,
foster-father of the Redeemer
but graciously receive them.
AmenMemorare to St Joseph - 14 march 2018. DAY FIVE. jpg


Thought for the Day – 14 March 2018 – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent

Thought for the Day – 14 March 2018 – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent

Each of us must enter on eternity.
Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

“Each of us must come to the evening of life.   Each of us must enter on eternity.   Each of us must come to that quiet, awful time, when we will appear before the Lord of the vineyard and answer for the deeds done in the body, whether they be good or bad.  That, my dear brethren, you will have to undergo. … It will be the dread moment of expectation when your fate for eternity is in the balance and when you are about to be sent forth as the companion of either saints or devils, without possibility of change. There can be no change;  there can be no reversal. As that judgement decides it, so it will be for ever and ever.   Such is the particular judgement. … when we find ourselves by ourselves, one by one, in His presence and have brought before us most vividly all the thoughts, words and deeds of this past life.   Who will be able to bear the sight of himself?

And yet we shall be obliged steadily to confront ourselves and to see ourselves.   In this life we shrink from knowing our real selves.   We do not like to know how sinful we are. We love those who prophesy smooth things to us and we are angry with those who tell us of our faults.

But on that day, not one fault only but all the secret, as well as evident, defects of our character will be clearly brought out.   We shall see what we feared to see here and much more.   And then, when the full sight of ourselves comes to us, who will not wish that he had known more of himself here, rather than leaving it for the inevitable day to reveal it all to him! …………………….We can believe what we choose.   We are answerable for what we choose to believe.”we can believe what we choose - bl j h newman - 14 march 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, SPEAKING of .....

Quote/s of the Day – 14 March 2018 – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent “Speaking of Death & Eternity”

Quote/s of the Day – 14 March 2018 – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent

“Speaking of Death & Eternity”

“Christ’s martyrs feared neither death nor pain. He triumphed in them who lived in them; and they, who lived not for themselves but for Him, found in death itself the way to life.”

St Augustine – (354-430) – Father & Doctor of the Churchchrist's martyrs - st augustine - 14 march 2018

“The more we are afflicted in this world, the greater is our assurance in the next; the more sorrow in the present, the greater will be our joy in the future.”

St Isidore of Seville (560-636) – Doctor of the Churchthe more we are afflicted - st isidore - 14 march 2018

“A man may very well lose his head and yet come to no harm – yea, I say, to unspeakable good and everlasting happiness.”

St Thomas More (1478-1535) a man may very well - st thomas more - 14 march 2018

“Let us prepare ourselves for death;  we have not a minute to lose:  it will come upon us at the moment when we least expect it; it will take us by surprise.  Look at the saints, my children, who were pure;  they were always trembling, they pined away with fear and we, who so often offend the good God–we have no fears.   Life is given us that we may learn to die well and we never think of it.   We occupy ourselves with everything else.   The idea of it often occurs to us and we always reject it;  we put it off to the last moment.   O my children! this last moment, how much it is to be feared!   Yet the good God does not wish us to despair;   He shows us the good thief, touched with repentance, dying near Him on the cross;   but he is the only one and then see, he dies near the good God.   Can we hope to be near Him at our last moment–we who have been far from Him all our life?   What have we done to deserve that favour?   A great deal of evil and no good.”

St John Vianney  (1786-1859) let us prepare ourselves for death - st john vianney - 14 march 2018


One Minute Reflection – – 14 March 2018 – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent and the Memorial of St Matilda

One Minute Reflection – – 14 March 2018 – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent and the Memorial of St Matilda

Now is the acceptable time!   Now is the time of salvation….2 Corinthians 6:2

REFLECTION – “You no longer have the time that is past.   Nor are you sure of the time that is to come.   Hence, all you do have, is this present point in time – and nothing more!”… St Catherine of Siena (1347-1380) Doctor of the Churchyou no longer have the time - st catherine of siena - 14 march 2018

PRAYER – Timeless loving Lord, teach me to be grateful for every moment that You allot to me.   Grant that I may always understand this ‘blink of an eye’ and live each moment only for You, in You and with You.   Difficult as your times were St Matilda, you maintained your eyes on the Lord alone, pray for us all, that we too may follow your example. Amenst matilda pray for us - 14 march 2018


Our Morning Offering – 14 March 2018 – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent

Our Morning Offering – 14 March 2018 – Wednesday of the 4th Week of Lent

Prayer in Honour of the Holy Cross
from the Seven Penitential Psalms Devotion

Lord Jesus Christ,
glorious Creator of the World,
splendour of the Father’s glory,
co-eternal with Him and the Holy Spirit,
Who deigned to take flesh of the spotless Virgin
and permitted Your glorious hands to be
fixed to the gibbet of the Cross,
that You might overthrow the gates of hell
and free the human race
from everlasting death,
look down frpm heaven
and have mercy on me,
a wretch borne down by the weight of sin
and polluted by the stains of my many misdeeds,
in Your mercy, do not forsake me,
most loving Jesus
but forgive that which I have sinned.
Hear me, prostrate before Your most
glorious Cross,
that I may stand before You,
pure and pleasing in Your sight,
Who reigns with the Father,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.
Amen.prayer in honour of the holy cross from the 7 penitential psalms devotion - prayer 2 - 14 march 2018

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 14 March – St Matilda of Ringelheim/Saxony (c 895 – 968)

Saint of the Day – 14 March – St Matilda of Ringelheim/Saxony (c 895 – 968) – Queen, Apostle of Prayer and Charity, Foundress  – Patron of death of children, disappointing children, falsely accused people, large families, people ridiculed for their piety, queens, second marriages, widows.

st mathilda

St Matilda, Queen of Germany and wife of King Henry I was the daughter of Count Dietrich of Westphalia and Reinhild of Denmark.   She was born about 895 and was raised by her grandmother, the Abbess of Eufurt convent.   Matilda married Henry the Fowler, son of Duke Otto of Saxony, in the year 909.   He succeeded his father as Duke in the year 912 and in 919 succeeded King Conrad I to the German throne.

She was widowed in the year 936 and supported her son Henry’s claim to his father’s throne.   When her son Otto (the Great) was elected, she persuaded him to name Henry Duke of Bavaria after he led an unsuccessful revolt.

St Matilda was known for her considerable almsgiving.   She was severely criticised by both Otto and Henry for what they considered her extravagant gifts to charities.   As a result, she resigned her inheritance to her sons and retired to her country home.   She was later recalled to the court through the intercession of Otto’s wife, Edith.   Matilda was welcomed back to the palace and her sons asked for her forgiveness.

In her final years, she devoted herself to the building of many churches, convents and monasteries.   She spent most of the declining years of her life at the convent at Nordhausen she had built.   She died at the monastery at Quedlinburg on March 14 and was buried there with her late husband, Henry.

Church St. Mathildis in Quedlinburg, Germany
The Church and Monastery of St Matilda at Quedlinburg

Last year’s post with more details of St Mathilda’s life –

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 14 March

St Agno of Zaragoza
St Alexander of Pydna
St Aphrodisius of Africa
Bl Arnold of Padua
St Boniface Curitan
St Diaconus
St Eutychius of Mesopotamia
Bl Eve of Liege
Bl Giacomo Cusmano
St Lazarus of Milan
St Leo of the Agro Verano
St Leobinus of Chartres (died 558)
St Matilda of Ringelheim/Saxony (c 895 – 968)
St Maximilian
Bl Pauline of Thuringia
St Peter of Africa
St Philip of Turin
St Talmach
Bl Thomas Vives

47 Martyrs of Rome – Forty-seven people who were baptised into the faith in Rome, Italy by Saint Peter the Apostle, and were later martyred together during the persecutions of Nero. Martyred c 67 in Rome, Italy.

Martyrs of Valeria – Two monks martyred by Lombards in Valeria, Italy who were never identified. After the monks were dead, their killers could still hear them singing psalms. They were hanged on a tree in Valeria, Italy in the 5th century.