Our Morning Offering – 4 July – The Memorial of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati T.O.S.D. (1901-1925) “Man of the Eight Beatitudes”
Prayer to Walk the Path of the Beatitudes By Cardinal Giovanni Saldarini (1924-2011) Archbishop of Turin
You gave to the young Pier Giorgio Frassati
the joy of meeting Christ
and of living his faith
in the service of the poor and the sick,
through his intercession,
may we, too, walk the Path of the Beatitudes
and follow the example of his generosity,
spreading the spirit of the Gospel in society.
Through Christ our Lord,
Thought for the Day – 4 July – The Memorial of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati T.O.S.D. (1901-1925) “Man of the Eight Beatitudes”
Once after visiting a badly disfigured leper he explained to a friend his rationale for his selfless giving:
“How rich we are to be in good health. The deformation of that young man will disappear in a few years when he enters Paradise. But we have the duty of putting our health at the service of those who haven’t it. To act otherwise would be to betray the gift of God. No human being should ever be left abandoned. But the best of all charities is that consecrated to the sick. That is an exceptional work: few have the courage to face its difficulties and dangers, to take on themselves the sufferings of others, in addition to their own needs and their own precautions and cares.”
Pier Giorgio was famous in Turin but his family regarded him as a problem . His father, Alfredo Frassati, editor of the daily La Stampa, seems to have resented his largesse. And his mother was inconvenienced by his frequent absences and his lateness to meals. Only after his death did they come to appreciate their son.
A virulent form of poliomyelitis attacked Pier Giorgio in July 1925 and he died within a week. He was twenty-four years old.
Once a friend observed that when Pier Giorgio finished praying in church, he waved a little farewell towards the tabernacle. I like to imagine the scene when this jovial saint said hello to Christ in heaven. My thought is this, on the Memorial of his beautiful saint, Bl Pier Giorgio, that the greatest gift and the only glory of my life is being a Catholic and striving each day, to grow in those greatest of all commandments, to love God above all and to love my neighbour as myself. St Edmund Campion (1540-1581), put it so well, “to be a Catholic is my greatest glory.”
Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, pray for us!
LET US PRAY:
PRAYER FOR THE CANONISATION OF BLESSED PIER GIORGIO FRASSATI
O merciful God,
Who through the perils of the world
deigned to preserve by Your grace
Your servant the blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati
pure of heart and ardent of charity,
listen, we ask You, to our prayers, and
if it is in Your designs that he be glorified by the Church,
show us Your will,
granting us the graces we ask of You,
through his intercession,
by the merits of Jesus Christ, Our Lord,
in union with the Holy Spirit,
one God forever and ever.
Quote/s of he Day – 4 July – The Memorial of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati T.O.S.D. (1901-1925) “Man of the Eight Beatitudes”
“I urge you, with all the strength of my soul, to approach the Eucharistic Table as often as possible. Feed on this Bread of the Angels, from which you will draw, the strength, to fight inner struggles.”
“Jesus comes to me every morning in Holy Communion, I repay Him, in my very small way, by visiting the poor. The house may be sordid but I am going to Christ.”
“To the Heights”
Blessed Pier Giorgio’s famous motto, “Verso l’alto,” Italian for “To the heights,” meant reaching for God as well as the mountain peaks. His regular habit was to attend Mass before heading to the mountains and of visiting the Blessed Sacrament upon his return. He loved the Eucharist. He would often spend whole nights in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.
“You ask me whether I am in good spirits. How could I not be so? As long as Faith gives me strength, I will always be joyful. Sadness ought to be banished from Catholic souls… the purpose for which we have been created shows us the path; even if strewn with many thorns, it is not a sad path. It is joyful even in the face of sorrow.”
One Minute Reflection – 4 July – The Memorial of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati T.O.S.D. (1901-1925) “Man of the Eight Beatitudes”
If someone who has worldly means sees a brother in need and refuses him compassion, how can the love of God remain in him? Children, let us love not in word or speech but in deed and truth…..1 John 3:17-18
REFLECTION – “Everyone of you knows, that the foundation of our religion is charity. Without it all our religion would crumble because we would not truly be Catholics, as long as we did not carry out, or rather shape our whole lives, by the two commandments in which the essence of the Catholic Faith lies: to love God with all our strength and to love our neighbour as ourselves.”…….Bl Pier Giorgio Frassati
PRAYER – Loving Father, teach me to see the face of Your Divine Son in all those I meet especially those in need. Help me to realise that love is the most powerful force in the world. Saint Elizabeth of Portugal and Blessed Pier Georgio are an inspiration to us all, teaching us by their actions, that it is only in living love in charity that we can be true Catholics. Saint Elizabeth of Portugal and Blessed Pier Georgio pray for us, amen.
Saint of the Day – 4 July – St Elizabeth of Portugal T.O.S.F. (1271-1336) Queen Consort, Franciscan Tertiary, Apostle of Charity and Peace, political negotiator and mediator – also known as Elizabeth of Aragon, Elisabet in Catalan, Isabel in Aragonese, Portuguese and Spanish and The Peacemaker, born in 1271 at Aragon, Spain and died on 4 July 1336 at Estremoz, Portugal of a fever. Patronages – Coimbra, Diocese of San Cristóbal de La Laguna, Cathedral of La Laguna.
Elizabeth means “Promise of God”
Saint Elizabeth was the daughter of King Peter III of this kingdom and niece of King James the Conqueror, great-niece of Emperor Frederick II of Germany. They gave her the name Elizabeth after her aunt, Saint Elizabeth of Hungary.
Her formation was formidable and from the time she was very young she had a notable piety. She was taught that, in order to be truly good, she ought to include mortification of her likes and whims along with her prayer. She was careful to order her life toward the love of God and neighbour, disciplining her habits of life. She did not eat between meals.
She was married at the age of 12 to King Dionysius of Portugal. This was a great cross for Elizabeth because he was a man of little morals, being violent an unfaithful. But she endured heroically this trial. She prayed and offered many sacrifices for him. She always treated him with goodness. They had two sons: Alfonso, the future king of Portugal and Constance, future king of Castille. Saint Elizabeth even educated the natural sons of her husband with other women. The king, for his part, admired her and permitted her to live an authentic Christian life, to a certain degree. She would rise very early in the morning and read six psalms, attend Holy Mass and dedicated herself to manage the duties of the palace. In her free time she met with other women to make clothing for the poor. She dedicated the afternoons to visiting the elderly and ill.
She made possible the construction of hostels, a hospital for the poor, a free school, a home for women repenting from a sinful life and a hospice for abandoned children. She also constructed convents and did other good works for the people. She would lend her beautiful dresses and even one of her crowns for the weddings of poor young women.
Saint Elizabeth would frequently distribute coins from the Royal Treasury to the poor so that they could buy their daily bread. On one occasion, King Dionysius, suspicious of her actions, began to spy on her. When the queen began to distribute money among the poor, the king saw and, infuriated, went to reclaim it. But the Lord intervened, in such a way that, when the king ordered that she showed him what she was giving to the poor, the coins turned to roses.
The son of Elizabeth, Alfonso, had a violent character like his father. He was filled with anger at the preference his father showed to his natural children. On two occasions he promoted a civil war against his father. Elizabeth strived for reconciliation between father and son. On one occasion she went on pilgrimage to Santarem, a Eucharistic miracle and, dressed as a penitent, implored the Lord for peace.
Then she went to present herself on the field of battle and, when the armies of her spouse and son were about to engage in battle, the queen kneeled between them and, on her knees, asked her husband and son to be reconciled.
Some of her letters have been preserved, which reflect gospel values and audacity of our Saint. To her husband:“Like an infuriated wolf that is going to kill your Little son, I will fight so that the arms to the King are not unleashed against our own son. But at the same time, I will first make sure that the arms of the army of my son are destroyed, before they are fired against the followers of his father.”
To her son: “By the Blessed Virgin Mary, I ask that you make peace with your father. See, the soldiers are burning houses, destroying crops and breaking everything in pieces. Not with weapons, my son, we cannot fix the problem with weapons, but rather with dialogue, continuing negotiations to fix these conflicts. I will make the troops of the king go away and that the demands of the son be attended to but please remember, that you have a most serious duty to your father as his son and as a subject to his king.”
She obtained peace on more than one occasion, and her husband died repentant, without a doubt due to prayers of his wife.
Because Saint Elizabeth had such a great love for the Eucharist, she dedicated herself to study the lives of the Saints who were most notable in their love for the Eucharist and especially Saint Clare. After becoming a widow, Saint Elizabeth divested herself of all her riches. She went on a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, where she surrendered her crown to the Archbishop in order to receive the habit as a Claretian tertiary. The Archbishop was so moved by this act of the Saint that he gave her his pastoral cross to help her on her return to Portugal. She lived her last years in the convent, dedicated to Eucharistic adoration.
When a war broke out between her son and her son-in-law, the King of Castille, Saint Elizabeth, despite her old age, undertook a long journey by dangerous roads and obtained peace. Nevertheless, the trip cost her life. Feeling herself close to death, she asked to be taken to a Claretian convent that she herself had founded. There she died invoking Our Lady on 4 July 1336.
God blessed her tomb with miracles. Her body can be venerated in the Claretian convent in Coimbra. She was Canonised on 25 May 1625 by Pope Urban VIII.
Saint Elizabeth of Portugal, pray for peace in our world!
St Elizabeth of Portugal T.O.S.F. (1271-1336) (Optional Memorial)
Bl Agatha Yun Jeom-Hye
St Albert Quadrelli
St Andrew of Crete
St Anthony Daniel
St Aurelian of Lyons
St Bertha of Blangy
St Carileffo of Anille
Bl Catherine Jarrige
St Cesidio Giacomantonio
Bl Damiano Grassi of Rivoli
St Donatus of Libya
St Edward Fulthrop
St Elias of Jerusalem
St Finbar of Wexford
St Fiorenzo of Cahors
St Flavian of Antioch
Bl Giovanni of Vespignano
St Haggai the Prophet
Bl Hatto of Ottobeuren
Bl Henry Abbot
St Henry of Albano
St Hosea the Prophet
St Innocent of Sirmium
Bl John Carey
Bl John Cornelius
Bl Jozef Kowalski
St Laurian of Seville
St Lauriano of Vistin
Bl Maria Crocifissa Curcio
St Namphanion the Archmartyr
Bl Natalia of Toulouse
St Odo the Good
Bl Odolric of Lyon
Bl Patrick Salmon
Bl Pedro Romero Espejo
Bl Pier Giorgio Frassati (1901-1925) Incorrupt – https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/07/04/saint-of-the-day-4-july-blessed-pier-georgio-frassati-t-o-s-d-the-man-of-the-eight-beatitudes/
St Sebastia of Sirmium
St Theodore of Cyrene
St Theodotus of Libya
Bl Thomas Bosgrave
Bl Thomas Warcop
Bl Ulric of Augsburg
St Ulric of Ratzeburg
St Valentine of Langres
St Valentine of Paris
Bl William Andleby
Bl William of Hirsau