Posted in MORNING Prayers, PAPAL ENCYLICALS, Pope BENEDICT XVI, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on LOVE, SAINT of the DAY, The SOCIAL TEACHING of the Church, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 25 June – Monday of the Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel Matthew 7:1-5 & The Memorial of St Maximus of Turin (? – c 420)

Thought for the Day – 25 June – Monday of the Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel Matthew 7:1-5 & The Memorial of St Maximus of Turin (? – c 420)

“Remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter from your brother’s eye”

Love — caritas — is an extraordinary force which leads people to opt for courageous and generous engagement in the field of justice and peace.   It is a force that has its origin in God, Eternal Love and Absolute Truth.   Each person finds his good by adherence to God’s plan for him, in order to realise it fully:  in this plan, he finds his truth, and through adherence to this truth he becomes free (cf. Jn 8:32)…

Charity is love received and given.   It is “grace”.   Its source is the wellspring of the Father’s love for the Son, in the Holy Spirit.   Love comes down to us from the Son.   It is creative love, through which we have our being; it is redemptive love, through which we are recreated.   Love is revealed and made present by Christ (cf. Jn 13:1) and “poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit” (Rom 5:5).   As the objects of God’s love, men and women become subjects of charity, they are called to make themselves instruments of grace, so as to pour forth God’s charity and to weave networks of charity.

This dynamic of charity received and given is what gives rise to the Church’s social teaching…: the proclamation of the truth of Christ’s love in society.   This doctrine is a service to charity but its locus is truth…   Development, social well-being, the search for a satisfactory solution to the grave socio-economic problems besetting humanity, all need this truth.  What they need even more is that this truth should be loved and demonstrated.   Without truth, without trust and love for what is true, there is no social conscience and responsibility and social action ends up serving private interests and the logic of power, resulting in social fragmentation, especially in a globalised society at difficult times like the present….Pope Benedict XVI Encyclical « Caritas in veritate 

“To illustrate this view of Maximus’ ministry in his city, I would like to point out for example Sermons 17 and 18, dedicated to an ever timely topic:  wealth and poverty in Christian communities.   In this context too, the city was fraught with serious tensions.   Riches were accumulated and hidden.   “No one thinks about the needs of others”, the Bishop remarked bitterly in his 17th Sermon.   “In fact, not only do many Christians not share their own possessions but they also rob others of theirs.   Not only, I say, do they not bring the money they collect to the feet of the apostles but in addition, they drag from priests’ feet their own brethren who are seeking help”.   And he concluded:  “In our cities there are many guests or pilgrims.   Do what you have promised adhering to faith, so that what was said to Ananias will not be said to you as well:  “You have not lied to men but to God'” (Sermon 17, 2-3).”…Pope Benedict Homily on St Maximus 31 October 2007

St Maximus of Turin, Pray for us!st maximus pray for us - 25 june 2018.jpg

 

Posted in EUCHARISTIC Adoration, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The PASSION, The RESURRECTION

Quote/s of the Day 25 June – The Memorial of St Maximus of Turin (? – c 420)

Quote/s of the Day 25 June – The Memorial of St Maximus of Turin (? – c 420)

“At Christmas He was born a man;
today He is reborn sacramentally.
Then He was born from the Virgin;
today He is born in mystery.
When He was born a man,
His mother Mary held Him close to her heart;
when He is born in mystery,
God the Father embraces Him
with His voice when he says:
This is my beloved Son,
in whom I am well pleased: listen to Him.
The mother caresses the tender baby on her lap;
the Father serves His Son by His loving testimony.
The mother holds the child for the Magi to adore;
the Father reveals that His Son
is to be worshiped by all the nations.”at chridtmas he was born a man - st maximus of turin - 25 june 2018

“The light of Christ
is an endless day
that knows no night.”

St Maximus of Turin (? – c 420)the light of christ - st maximus of turin - 25 june 2018

Posted in MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on PEACE, St JOSEMARIA Escriva and Opus Dei, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 25 June – Monday of the Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time, Year B

One Minute Reflection – 25 June – Monday of the Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time, Year B

“You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.”…Matthew 7:5

REFLECTION – “Let us especially resolve not to judge others, not to doubt their good will, to drown evil in an abundance of good, sowing loyal friendship, justice and peace all around us.”… St Josemaria Escriva (1902-1975)matthew 7-5 you hyprocrite - let us especially resolve not to judge - st josemaria - 25 june 2018

PRAYER – God of power and mercy, be with us in our endeavours to be true to Your commandments and be light in our world.   Grant that we may always act in true humility towards our neighbour, assisting where we are able without allowing our hearts to pass judgment on things we do not see and understand.   May our Mother Mary be with us and lead us to the truth of Her Son.   We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.blessed virgin mother mary - pray for us - 25 june 2018

Posted in MORNING Prayers, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Our Morning Offering – 25 June – Monday of the Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time, Year B

Our Morning Offering – 25 June – Monday of the Twelfth Week of Ordinary Time, Year B

O Light Eternal
Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471)

O Light eternal,
surpassing all created brightness,
flash forth the lightning from above
and enlighten the inmost recesses of my heart.
Cleanse, cheer, enlighten
and vivify my spirit with all its powers,
that it may cleave to You in ecstasies of joy.
Oh, when will that happy
and wished-for hour come,
that You may fill me with Your presence
and become all in all to me?
So long as this is not given me,
my joy will not be complete.
Ameno light eternal - thomas a kempis - 25 june 2018 - beige old light

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, PAPAL HOMILIES, Pope BENEDICT XVI, SAINT of the DAY, VATICAN Resources

Saint of the Day – 25 June – St Maximus of Turin (? – c 420) Father of the Church

Saint of the Day – 25 June – St Maximus of Turin (? – c 420) Father of the Church, Bishop, Writer, Theologian  –  known as Massimo – date of birth unknown – his date of death is also not certain.   St Maximus is believed to have been a native of Rhaetia (modern day Northern Italy).  Patron of Turin, Italy.   St Maximus attended the synod of Milan where northern Italian bishops accepted the letter of Pope Leo I which set forth the orthodox doctrine of the Incarnation.   He also attended the the Synod of Rome in 465.   He was a prolific and inspirational Theological writer with 118 homilies, 116 sermons and 6 treatises surviving.

ST maximus of turin

“Between the end of the fourth century and the beginning of the fifth, another Father of the Church after St Ambrose made a great contribution to the spread and consolidation of Christianity in Northern Italy – St Maximus, whom we come across in 398 as Bishop of Turin, a year after St Ambrose’s death.   Very little is known about him, in compensation, we have inherited a collection of about 116 of his Sermons.   It is possible to perceive in them the Bishop’s profound and vital bond with his city, which attests to an evident point of contact between the episcopal ministry of Ambrose and that of Maximus.

At that time serious tensions were disturbing orderly civil coexistence.   In this context, as pastor and teacher, Maximus succeeded in obtaining the Christian people’s support. The city was threatened by various groups of barbarians.   They entered by the Eastern passes, which went as far as the Western Alps.   Turin was therefore permanently garrisoned by troops and at critical moments became a refuge for the populations fleeing from the countryside and urban centres where there was no protection.   Maximus’ interventions in the face of this situation testify to his commitment to respond to the civil degradation and disintegration.   Although it is still difficult to determine the social composition of those for whom the Sermons were intended, it would seem that Maximus’ preaching – to avoid the risk of vagueness – was specifically addressed to a chosen nucleus of the Christian community of Turin, consisting of rich landowners who had property in the Turinese countryside and a house in the city.   This was a clear-sighted pastoral decision by the Bishop, who saw this type of preaching as the most effective way to preserve and strengthen his own ties with the people.St. Maximus presents to the people of Turin the Icon of the Madonna Consolata.

To illustrate this view of Maximus’ ministry in his city, I would like to point out for example Sermons 17 and 18, dedicated to an ever timely topic:  wealth and poverty in Christian communities.   In this context too, the city was fraught with serious tensions. Riches were accumulated and hidden.   “No one thinks about the needs of others”, the Bishop remarked bitterly in his 17th Sermon.   “In fact, not only do many Christians not share their own possessions but they also rob others of theirs.   Not only, I say, do they not bring the money they collect to the feet of the apostles but in addition, they drag from priests’ feet, their own brethren who are seeking help”.   And he concluded:  “In our cities there are many guests or pilgrims.   Do what you have promised”, adhering to faith, “so that what was said to Ananias will not be said to you as well:  “You have not lied to men but to God'” (Sermon 17, 2-3).

In the next Sermon, the 18th, Maximus condemns the recurring forms of exploitation of others’ misfortunes.   “Tell me, Christian”, the Bishop reprimands his faithful, “tell me why you snatched the booty abandoned by the plunderers?   Why did you take home “ill-gotten gains’ as you yourself think, torn apart and contaminated?”.   “But perhaps”, he continues, “you say you have purchased them and thereby believe you are avoiding the accusation of avarice.   However, this is not the way to equate purchasing with selling.   “It is a good thing to make purchases but that means what is sold freely in times of peace, not goods looted during the sack of a city… So act as a Christian and a citizen who purchases in order to repay”  (Sermon 18: 3).   Without being too obvious, Maximus thus managed to preach a profound relationship between a Christian’s and a citizen’s duties.   In his eyes, living a Christian life also meant assuming civil commitments.   Vice-versa, every Christian who, “despite being able to live by his own work, seizes the booty of others with the ferocity of wild beasts”;  who “tricks his neighbour, who tries every day to nibble away at the boundaries of others, to gain possession of their produce, does not compare to a fox biting off the heads of chickens but rather to a wolf savaging pigs.” (Sermon 41, 4).

img-Saint-Maximus-of-Turin

In comparison with the cautious, defensive attitude that Ambrose adopted to justify his famous project of redeeming prisoners of war, the historical changes that occurred in the relationship between the Bishop and the municipal institutions are clearly evident. By now sustained through legislation that invited Christians to redeem prisoners, Maximus, with the collapse of the civil authority of the Roman Empire, felt fully authorised in this regard to exercise true control over the city.   This control was to become increasingly extensive and effective until it replaced the irresponsible evasion of the magistrates and civil institutions.   In this context, Maximus not only strove to rekindle in the faithful the traditional love for their hometown but he also proclaimed the precise duty to pay taxes, however burdensome and unpleasant they might appear (cf. Sermon 26, 2).   In short, the tone and substance of the Sermons imply an increased awareness of the Bishop’s political responsibility in the specific historical circumstances. He was “the lookout tower” posted in the city.   Whoever could these watchmen be, Maximus wonders in Sermon 92, “other than the most blessed Bishops set on a lofty rock of wisdom, so to speak, to defend the peoples and to warn them about the evils approaching in the distance?”.   And in Sermon 89 the Bishop of Turin describes his tasks to his faithful, making a unique comparison between the Bishop’s function and the function of bees:  “Like the bee”, he said, Bishops “observe bodily chastity, they offer the food of heavenly life using the sting of the law.   They are pure in sanctifying, gentle in restoring and severe in punishing”.   With these words, St Maximus described the task of the Bishop in his time.st maximus of turin - snip

In short, historical and literary analysis show an increasing awareness of the political responsibility of the ecclesiastical authority in a context in which it continued de facto to replace the civil authority.
Indeed, the ministry of the Bishop of Northwest Italy, starting with Eusebius who dwelled in his Vercelli “like a monk” to Maximus of Turin, positioned “like a sentinel” on the highest rock in the city, developed along these lines.   It is obvious that the contemporary historical, cultural and social context is profoundly different.   Today’s context is rather the context outlined by my venerable Predecessor, Pope John Paul II, in the Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Ecclesia in Europa, in which he offers an articulate analysis of the challenges and signs of hope for the Church in Europe today (nn. 6-22).   In any case, on the basis of the changed conditions, the believer’s duties to his city and his homeland still remain effective.   The combination of the commitments of the “honest citizen” with those of the “good Christian” has not in fact disappeared.

In conclusion, to highlight one of the most important aspects of the unity of Christian life, I would like to recall the words of the Pastoral Constitution Gaudium et Spes:  consistency between faith and conduct, between Gospel and culture.   The Council exhorts the faithful “to perform their duties faithfully in the spirit of the Gospel.   It is a mistake to think that because we have here no lasting city, but seek the city which is to come, we are entitled to shirk our earthly responsibilities;  this is to forget that by our faith we are bound all the more to fulfil these responsibilities according to the vocation of each one” (n. 43).   

In following the Magisterium of St Maximus and of many other Fathers, let us make our own, the Council’s desire, that the faithful may be increasingly anxious to “carry out their earthly activity in such a way as to integrate human, domestic, professional, scientific and technical enterprises with religious values, under whose supreme direction all things are ordered to the glory of God” (ibid.) and thus for humanity’s good.”…Pope Benedict XVI, General Audience, Wednesday, 31 October 2007header - st maximus of turin

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Feast of Our Lady of Grace/Our Lady of the Bowed Head

Our Lady of Grace/Our Lady of the Bowed Head -https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/06/25/25-june-the-feast-of-our-lady-of-grace/

St Adalbert of Egmond
St Amand of Coly
Bl Burchard of Mallersdorf
St Cyneburga of Gloucester
St Domingo Henares de Zafra Cubero
Bl Dorothy of Montau
St Eurosia of Jaca
St Febronia of Nisibis
Bl Fulgentius de Lara
St Gallicanus of Embrun
St Gallicanus of Ostia
St Gohard of Nantes
Bl Guy Maramaldi
Bl Henry Zdick
Bl John the Spaniard
St Luceias and Companions
St Maximus of Turin (? – c 420)
St Moloc of Mortlach
St Molonachus of Lismore
St Phanxicô Ðo Van Chieu
St Prosper of Reggio
St Selyf of Cornwall
St Solomon I
St Solomon III of Bretagne
St William of Vercelli (1085-1142) – https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/06/25/saint-of-the-day-25-june-st-william-of-vercelli/