Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2019, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION, The RESURRECTION

Lenten Thoughts – 7 April – “If you wish to arrive at the second part, do not despise the first”

Lenten Thoughts – 7 April – The Fifth Sunday of Lent, Year C

“Great thing is the knowledge of the crucified Christ.   How many things are enclosed inside this treasure! Christ crucified!   Such is the hidden treasure of wisdom and science.   Do not be deceived, then, under the pretext of wisdom.   Gather before the covering and pray that it may be uncovered.   Foolish philosopher of this world, what you are looking for is worthless… What is the advantage of being thirsty, if you despise the source? …  And what is His precept but that we believe in Him and love each other? In whom?   In Christ crucified.   This is His commandment – that we believe in Christ crucified …  But where humility is, there is also majesty, where weakness is, there shall one find power, where death is, there shall be life as well.   If you wish to arrive at the second part, do not despise the first”

St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor
(Sermon 160, 3-4)this is his commandment that we believe - st augustine 7 april 2019 lenten thoughts.jpg

Posted in GOD the FATHER, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY

Quote of the Day – 7 April – “Be driven by the love of God”

Quote of the Day – 7 April – The Fifth Sunday of Lent, Year C, Gospel: John 8:1–11 and the Memorial of St John Baptiste de La Salle (1651-1719)

“Be driven by the love of God
because Jesus Christ died for all,
that those who live.
may live not for themselves but for Him,
who died and rose for them.
Above all, let your charity and zeal
show how you love the Church.
Your work is for the Church,
which is the body of Christ.”

St John Baptist de La Salle

more quotes by St John Baptiste here:  https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/04/07/quote-s-of-the-day-7-april-easter-saturday-and-the-memorial-of-st-john-baptiste-de-la-salle-1651-1719/

be driven by the love of god - st john baptsiste de la salle 7 april 2019.jpg

Posted in LENT 2019, The WORD

Lenten Reflection – 7 April – “Scapegoating violence”

Lenten Reflection – 7 April – The Fifth Sunday of Lent, Year C, Gospel: John 8:1–11

The Readings:
Isaiah 43:16-21; Psalms 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6; Philippians 3: 8-14; John 8:1-11

And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you;
go and do not sin again.”…John 8:11

Bishop Robert Barron

JOHN 8:1-11

“Friends, our Gospel today tells about the woman that scribes and Pharisees caught in adultery.   Imagine where they were standing when they caught her in the very act.   The voyeurism and perversion of these men!   Then they come en masse, in the terrible enthusiasm of a mob and they present the case to Jesus.

Now, what does Jesus do in the face of this violent mob?   First, He writes on the ground. The mysterious writing might indicate the listing of the sins of each person in the group. As He said in another Gospel, “Remove the plank in your own eye, and then you can see more clearly the speck in your brother’s eye.”

And then He says, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to cast a stone at her.”   He forces them to turn their accusing glance inward, where it belongs.   Instead of projecting their violence outward on a scapegoat, they should honestly name and confront the dysfunction within themselves.

This story, like all the stories in the Gospels, is a foreshadowing of the great story toward which we are tending.   Jesus will be put to death by a mob bent on scapegoating violence.

Reflect: What is “scapegoating violence” and where do you see it in our culture? Have you ever been involved in this type of violence yourself?”john 8 11 - he forces them to turn their accusing glance inwards - bishop robert barron 7 april 2019.jpg

Daily Meditation:
Inspired by His love, guided by His example,
change our selfishness into self-giving.
Today we celebrate the Third Scrutiny,
as we journey to the font with those preparing for Baptism.
We are in our last week before Holy Week.
It seems that there is so much left to do,
to ask for, to be open to, to surrender, to change.
Jesus assures us that He is the “resurrection and the life,”
that if we place our faith in Him, we will “never die.”
“I am troubled now. Yet what should I say?
‘Father, save me from this hour’?
But it was for this purpose that I came to this hour.
Father, glorify your name.”

Today we beg for the graces we need and desire this week.
We ask for courage in the journey ahead.

Indeed I count everything as loss
because of the surpassing worth
of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.
Philippians 3:8the fifth sunday of lent 7 april 2019

Closing Prayer:
Father,
it’s so hard to love the world sometimes
and to love it the way Jesus did seems impossible.
Help me to be inspired by His love and
guided by His example.
Most of all, I want to accept that I can’t do it alone,
and that trying is an arrogance of self-centredness.
I need You, dear God, to give me support in this journey.
Show me how to unlock my heart
so that I am less selfish.
Let me be less fearful of the pain and darkness
that will be transformed by You into Easter joy.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen

Posted in SUNDAY REFLECTIONS, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Sunday Reflection – 7 April – Come to the altar with your wounds and scars.

Sunday Reflection – 7 April – The Fifth Sunday of Lent, Year C

Every moment of your life is a preparation for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, just as every moment of My life was a preparation for and a slow ascent to the Sacrifice of the Cross.   Understand this and you will see that nothing in your life is foreign to My plan for you, that everything you have done and that every place you have ever been and that every person with whom you have been or are connected, is part of My design for your life.

When you bring to your Mass all that you have experienced — your whole life story — you allow Me to redeem those things that are most dark, bitter and painful by taking them into the mystery of My Sacrifice.

Come to the altar with your wounds and scars.   Give them to Me and I shall unite them to My own sufferings and so make them shine in My sight.   Come to the altar with your sins, even with those of which you are most ashamed and I shall show you that I have already taken them upon Myself and expiated them in my Blood.   Come to the altar with every troubled and broken relationship of your past, with every betrayal, every failure, and every falling away from holiness and I shall cast all these things into the ocean of My mercy, never again to be recovered, or named, or used by the Accuser against you.

(From In Sinu Iesu, The Journal of a Priest)when you bring to mass - in sinu jesus - 7 april 2019 sun reflection .jpg

Posted in LENT 2019, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 7 April – He has suffered for all

One Minute Reflection – 7 April – The Fifth Sunday of Lent, Year C, Gospel: John 8:1–11

And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go and do not sin again.”…John 8:11

REFLECTION – “The Gospel shows us sinners who accuse another sinner in Jesus’ presence.   Bending over to write on the ground, Jesus seems to be absent. He breaks His silence only twice – the first time to gather accusers and accused together into their shared culpability; the second time, to give voice to His forgiveness, since no-one is left, to condemn another. In the light of Jesus; silent suffering for all of us, every accusation has to fall silent, for “God has locked everyone up in the same disobedience,” not to punish them (as the accusers wanted) but “the he might have mercy on all” (Rom 11:32).   That no-one can condemn the woman, follows from Jesus’ second rather than first statement. He has suffered for all, in order to gain heaven’s forgiveness for all and for that reason, no-one, can accuse anyone else in God’s presence.”…Cardinal Hans Urs von Balthasar (1905-1988)john 8 11 - neither do i condemn you - he has suffered for all - hans urs von balthasar 7 april 2019

PRAYER – Give us good God, a heart of flesh, that we might resemble the heart of Your love.   For truly following the steps of Your divine Son, we would make peace in the world and give glory to Your kingdom.   Help us Lord, to see with Your eyes and hear with Your ears, that the Word may dwell in us all and bring mercy to all.  May the immaculate heart of Mary, our Mother dwell in us and help us to reach our eternal home.   We make our prayer through Christ, our Lord, with You and the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.mary mother of god pray for us - 27 july 2018

Posted in EUCHARISTIC Adoration, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Our Morning Offering – 7 April – Prayer in Honour of the Eucharistic King

Our Morning Offering – 7 April – The Fifth Sunday of Lent, Year C

Prayer in Honour of the Eucharistic King
By St Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

O Jesus, King of all peoples and all ages,
accept the Acts of Adoration and praise,
which we, Your brothers by adoption,
humbly offer You.
You are the “Living Bread which comes down from heaven
and gives life to the world,”
Supreme Priest and Victim.
On the Cross, You offered Yourself to the Eternal Father
as a bloody sacrifice of expiation,
for the redemption of the human race
and now, You offer Yourself daily upon our altars,
by the hands of Your ministers,
in order to establish, in every heart,
Your “reign of truth and life, of holiness and grace,
of justice, love and peace.”
O King of glory, may Your kingdom come!
Reign from Your “throne of grace”,
in the hearts of children,
so that they may guard untainted
the while lily of baptismal innocence.
Reign in the hearts of the young,
that they may grow up healthy and pure,
obedient to the commands of those who represent You
in their families and schools and in the Church.
Reign in our homes,
so that parents and children may live in peace,
in obedience to Your holy law.
Reign in our lands,
so that all citizens,
in the harmonious order of the various social groups,
may feel themselves children of the same heavenly Father,
called to co-operate for the common good of this world,
happy to belong to the one Mystical Body,
of which Your Sacrament is at once the symbol
and the everlasting source.
Finally, reign, O King of kings
and “Lord of lords,”
over all the nations of the earth
and enlighten all their rules in order that,
inspired by Your example, they may make
“plans for welfare and not for evil.”
O Jesus, present in the Sacrament of the Altar,
teach all the nations to serve You with willing hearts,
knowing that “to serve God is to reign.”
May Your Sacrament, O Jesus,
be light to the mind,
strength to the will,
joy to the heart.
May it be the support of the weak,
the comfort of the suffering,
the wayfaring bread of salvation for the dying
and for all,
the “pledge of future glory”
Amenprayer in honour of the eucharisdtic king.jpg

Posted in FRANCISCAN OFM, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 7 April – Blessed Maria Assunta Pallotta (1878-1905)

Saint of the Day – 7 April – Blessed Maria Assunta Pallotta (1878-1905) aged 27, born Assunta Maria Pallotta, was an Italian professed Religious who served as a member of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary, Missionary to China.  Patronages – Missionaries, against typhus.   Her body is incorrupt.Bienheureuse_Maria_Assunta_Pallotta.jpg

Assunta Maria Pallotta was born on 20 August 1878 in a little village called Force, Italy. Of a gentle and peaceful nature, Assunta was the ray of sunshine in the family home where she was the eldest of four boys and two girls. Although Assunta’s childhood was relatively happy, her family lived in great poverty.   She attended school just for the time necessary to learn to read and write.   In spite of her young age, very soon she had to devote herself fully to the life of the family.   She was a skilful little housekeeper, full of good sense and very active and she helped her mother in everything.

In order to help her family, she courageously faced the humblest and hardest work.   At a certain time, she worked as a diligent little labourer, carrying in a willow basket the materials necessary for the construction work.

When still very young, her attraction for prayer could already be seen.   She had a filial tenderness for the Blessed Virgin and she could be seen setting up little altars or decorating with flowers the pictures of the beloved Madonna in the countryside.  Assunta’s piety very naturally radiated around her by means of a discreet apostolate.   She liked to gather the children of her own age together in the church or under the porch, to speak to them about the goodness of God with all the fervour of her heart.

​On Sundays and in her rare moments of leisure, she would be seen very often in the Church, kneeling for hours before the altar, conversing with the Friend of the humble and the lesser people.   Apprenticed to the old tailor in the village, she liked to place in front of her a holy picture which she looked at from time to time, while her lips murmured the Hail Marys of the Rosary.

At the age of twelve Assunta received Jesus in the Eucharist for the first time.   It was an inexpressible moment of happiness for her, the memory of which would remain as one of the most beautiful of her life.

As a teenager, everyone who knew her was struck by her serenity in look and manner. She was a girl of calm common sense.   Her spirituality was really quite simple.   To God she offered her heart in frequent prayer.   Then, as a continued prayer, she dedicated her exterior actions.

Drawn to give her life entirely to God, Assunta confided in her parish priest, her director, who encouraged her vocation.   When she was nineteen, Assunta decided to enter the convent but encountered many obstacles not least among them her mother’s objections and her lack of dowry.  mariaassuntasite.jpgBut prayer prevailed and at last a letter from Rome, from the Foundress of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary, arrived, “Let the little one come as she is.   The doors of the convent of the Franciscan Missionaries of the Mary at 12 Via Giusti are open to receive her.”

Assunta began her postulancy at St Helen’s Convent in Rome.   During her time as a postulant, Assunta was employed in the kitchen.   Humble and silent, she fulfilled her charge so perfectly that for a long time she was cited as a model to those who came after her.

On 9 October 1898, Assunta was received as a novice and sent to the convent at Grottaferrata.   Here, Sr Maria Assunta was employed in work in the fields.   In this modest field of work, sparing herself neither time nor trouble, Sister Maria Assunta was as happy as in the most attractive work.   To serve God and her neighbour in the humblest and most mortified ways was her motto.   It enabled her to feel true Franciscan joy.

There at the end of November, 1898, Assunta met Mother Mary of the Passion.   Upon learning that Assunta came from an area called “The Marches” Mother Mary of the Passion said, “That is the land of saints.  You must become a saint too”. Assunta had her watchword.   In the depth of her heart, Assunta was stowing away these simple words as her precious heritage.

In January 1902, Sr. Assunta left her beloved Grottaferrata to join a new convent in Florence.   For two years she was to be the joy of this house.   Without having any fixed employment, she helped in all the charges.   When there was extra work or when a harder job presented itself, one was sure to find her ready  . She accepted the request for a service with a lovely smile, nothing changed her good humour.  This angelic patience, the gentleness of her character, caused her to be sent as a helper to the infirmary where the sick benefited from the charitable devotedness of their improvised nurse.

On 19 March 1904, together with nine other Franciscan Missionaries of Mary, Assunta set sail for China.   Ardently Sister Maria Assunta began to study the Chinese language in order to be able to speak of the goodness of God to those around her.   In the convent where the Franciscan nuns cared for four hundred orphans Maria Assunta joyfully worked in the kitchen.   She did her work there with as much diligence and care as she would have taught catechism.   To accomplish her daily duties as perfectly as possible seemed to her the best way of working as a true missionary.   Ever intimately united with God, she lived day by day the ordinary community life for His honour and glory.

A serious epidemic of typhus broke out in the community and she fell victim to it.   She bore the suffering with great patience and fortified by the rites of Holy Church, she died at sunset on 7 April 1905, being then only twenty-seven years old.   Non-believers as well as Christians flocked to the place where she lay as a mysterious perfume filled the entire house for three days after her death.bl maria assunta portrait

Eight years after Sister Assunta’s death when the community was moving to Tai-Yuan-Foo, the Bishop asked for the body of Sister Assunta to be transferred.   The disinterment revealed the fact that the body was incorrupt.    After being exhumed, the body remained exposed to the air in the chapel of the cemetery for a month without being affected.   Once again, God showed His favour for the little missionary Sister who lived for Him alone.

On 7 November 1954, Sister Assunta was beatified by Pope Pius XII.   The Church officially recognised the little Italian girl whose life had been a song of simplicity, purity and love and who is indeed the beloved of Christ whom she had served so devotedly.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA