Posted in EASTER, Papa FRANCIS, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHER and all PRIESTS, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 5 May – “…Lead you where you do not wish to go.”

Thought for the Day – 5 May – Third Sunday of Easter, Year C, Gospel: John 21:1–19

“…Lead you where you do not wish to go.”…John 21:18

The Gospel of the appearance of the Lord at the Sea of Tiberias, ends with the installation of Peter in his pastoral office.   Everything that precedes this, is preparatory -unsuccessful fishing, then the miraculous catch, after which Peter swims to the Lord and stands beside Him on the bedrock of eternity, while the rest of the Church brings her harvest to the two of them, at which point, Peter, himself, hauls the entire netfull ashore. Finally, the crucial question to Peter – “Do you love me more than these?” You, the Denier, do you love me more than the Beloved Disciple there, who stood under the Cross?   Made conscious of his guilt by means of the threefold question, Peter answers with a repentant first ‘Yes’ (since he can, by no means say No), undoubtedly, gaining the strength to do so from John (in the communion of saints).
Without this confession of greater love, the Good Shepherd, who gives His life for his sheep, could not entrust His flock to Peter’s pasturing.
For the office Jesus has received from the Father, is identical, with His own loving sacrifice of His life, for His sheep.
Ever since Jesus bestowed this office on Peter, this unity of love and office has been unconditionally required.   This unity is then sealed by the prediction of Peter’s crucifixion, the gift of completed discipleship.   The cross will be bound up with the papacy, from this point onward, even when it is given to unworthy popes.
The more seriously a pope takes his office, the heavier the weight of the cross, on his shoulder becomes.

Cardinal Hans Urs von Balthasar

Light of the Worldthe gospel of the appearance of the lord at the sea-card hans urs von balthasar 5 may 2019.jpg

Pray for Pope Francis, amen!

Prayer for Pope Francis

O God, shepherd and ruler of all the faithful,
look favourably on Your servant Francis,
whom You have set
at the head of Your Church as her shepherd;
Grant, we pray, that by word and example
he may be of service to those over whom he presides
so that, together with the flock entrusted to his care,
he may come to everlasting life.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with You in the
unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.
Amenprayer for pope francis - 5 may 2019.jpg

Posted in CATHOLIC DEVOTIONS of the Month, MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARIAN TITLES, Papal Apostolic EXHORTATIONS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SAINT Pope PAUL VI, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Marian Thoughts – 5 May – “A Calm Vision”

Marian Thoughts – 5 May – the Month of Mary

Apostolic Exhortation of St Pope Paul VI
Marialis Cultus – 2 February 1974

To Honour Mary

Devotion to the Mother of the Lord becomes for the faithful an opportunity for growing in divine grace and this is the ultimate aim of all pastoral activity.   For it is impossible to honour her who is “full of grace” (Lk. 1:28) without thereby honouring, in oneself, the state of grace, which is friendship with God, communion with Him and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.   It is this divine grace which takes possession of the whole man and conforms him to the image of the Son of God (cf. Rom. 8:29; Col. 1:18).

The Catholic Church, endowed with centuries of experience, recognises in devotion to the Blessed Virgin a powerful aid for man as he strives for fulfilment.   Mary, the New Woman, stands at the side of Christ, the New Man, within whose mystery the mystery of man(124) alone finds true ligh,; she is given to it as a pledge and guarantee that God’s plan in Christ for the salvation of the whole man has already achieved realisation in a creature – in her.   Contemplated in the episodes of the Gospels and in the reality which she already possesses in the City of God, the Blessed Virgin Mary offers a calm vision and a reassuring word to modern man, torn as he often is between anguish and hope, defeated by the sense of his own limitations and assailed by limitless aspirations, troubled in his mind and divided in his heart, uncertain before the riddle of death, oppressed by loneliness while yearning for fellowship, a prey to boredom and disgust. She shows forth the victory of hope over anguish, of fellowship over solitude, of peace over anxiety, of joy and beauty over boredom and disgust, of eternal visions over earthly ones, of life over death.contemplated in the episodes - st paul VI- marilis cultus 5 may 2019.jpg

Let the very words that she spoke to the servants at the marriage feast of Cana, “Do whatever he tells you” (Jn. 2:5), be a seal on our Exhortation and a further reason in favour of the pastoral value of devotion to the Blessed Virgin as a means of leading men to Christ.   Those words, which at first sight were limited to the desire to remedy an embarrassment at the feast, are seen in the context of Saint John’s Gospel to re-echo the words used by the people of Israel to give approval to the Covenant at Sinai (cf. Ex. 19:8, 24:3, 7; Dt. 5:27) and to renew their commitments (cf. Jos. 24:24; Ezr. 10:12; Neh. 5:12). And they are words which harmonise wonderfully with those spoken by the Father at the theophany on Mount Tabor – “Listen to him” (Mt. 17:5

Second Reading
The Little Office of Mary
Saturdays
===============

Mater Admirabilis, Pray for us!mater-admirabilis-pray-for-us-5-may-2019.jpg

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, EASTER, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL HOMILIES, The RESURRECTION, The WORD

Quote of the Day- 5 May – “…Become witnesses of His Resurrection”

Quote of the Day- 5 May – Third Sunday of Easter, Year C

“The Gospel of Easter is very clear –
we need to go back there, to see Jesus risen
and to become witnesses of His Resurrection.
This is not to go back in time, 
it is not a kind of nostalgia.
It is returning to our first love,
in order to receive the fire which Jesus
has kindled in the world
and to bring that fire to all people,
to the very ends of the earth.”

Pope Francis

(Easter Vigil Homily, 2014)pope-francis-easter-vigil.20 april 2017 and again 5 May 2019.jpg

“…He certainly meets us
where we are in life – and –
He will never leave us
where He found us!”

Fr Mark J Hunt STDhe certainly meets us where he found us - 5 may 2019.jpg

Posted in Pope BENEDICT XVI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, St JOSEMARIA Escriva and Opus Dei, SUNDAY REFLECTIONS, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Sunday Reflection – 5 May – ” the privileged place”

Sunday Reflection – 5 May – Third Sunday of Easter, Year C

Pope Benedict XVI

” The Eucharist, the privileged place in which the Church recognises “the Author of life” (Acts 3: 15) is “the breaking of the bread”, as it is called in the Acts of the Apostles.   In it, through faith, we enter into communion with Christ, who is “the priest, the altar and the lamb of sacrifice” (see Preface for Easter, 5) and is among us.

Let us gather round Him to cherish the memory of His words and of the events contained in Scripture, let us relive His Passion, death and Resurrection.   In celebrating the Eucharist, we communicate with Christ, the victim of expiation and from Him we draw forgiveness and life.

What would our lives as Christians be without the Eucharist?   The Eucharist is the perpetual, living inheritance which the Lord has bequeathed to us in the Sacrament of His Body and His Blood and which we must constantly rethink and deepen so that, as venerable Pope Paul VI said, it may “impress its inexhaustible effectiveness on all the days of our earthly life.” – (Insegnamenti, V [1967], p. 779)

in-it-through-faith-pope-benedict-15-april-2018 and 5 may 2019

Many Christians take their time 
and have leisure enough in their social life 
(no hurry here). 
They are leisurely, too, in their professional activities, 
at table and recreation (no hurry here either). 
But isn’t it strange, how those same Christians.
find themselves in such a rush 
and want to hurry the priest, 
in their anxiety to shorten the time devoted 
to the most holy sacrifice of the altar?

St Josemaria Escriva (1902-1975)

many-christians-take-their-time-st-josemaria-15-april-2018.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The RESURRECTION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 5 May – “Jesus was standing on the shore”

One Minute Reflection – 5 May – Third Sunday of Easter, Year C, Gospel: John 21:1–19 and the Memorial of Saint Nunzio Sulprizio (1917-1836)

“When it was already dawn, Jesus was standing on the shore”...John 21:4

REFLECTION – “When it was already dawn, Jesus was standing on the shore”
What does the sea indicate but the present age, which is disturbed by the uproar of circumstances and the commotion of this perishable life?   What does the solidity of the shore signify but the uninterrupted continuance of eternal peace?   Therefore, since the disciples were still held in the waves of this mortal life, they were labouring on the sea. But since our Redeemer had already passed beyond His perishable body, after His Resurrection, He stood on the shore, as if He were speaking to His disciples by His actions, of the mystery of His Resurrection:  “I am not appearing to you on the sea, because I am not with you in the waves of confusion” (Mt 14:25)

It is for this reason that He said, in another place, to these same disciples after his Resurrection:  “These are the words I spoke to you when I was still with you” (Lk 24:44). It was not that He wasn’t with them, when He appeared to them as a bodily presence but… He, in His immortal body, was apart from their mortal bodies.    He was saying, that He was no longer with them, even as He stood in their midst.   In the passage we read today, He also disclosed, by the place in which He was standing, when He showed Himself on the shore, while they were still at sea, what He professed, when he was with them.”…St Pope Gregory the Great (540-604) Father & Doctor of the Churchjesus was standing on the shore - john 21 4 - what does the sea indicate - st gregory the great 5 may 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Lord God, grant Your people constant joy in the renewed vigour of their souls. They rejoice because You have restored them to the glory of Your adopted children, let them look forward gladly to the certain hope of the resurrection.   May the prayers of our Blessed Mother and St Nunzio, who so bravely fought the good fight, be of assistance to us amidst the storms of this mortal life.   We make our prayer through our Resurrected Christ, with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen, alleluia!blessed virgin queen and mother pray for us 5 may 2019st nunzio sulprizio pray for us - 5 may 2019

Posted in CATHOLIC DEVOTIONS of the Month, CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, EASTER, MARIAN PRAYERS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Our Morning Offering – 5 May – Marian Prayer before Mass

Our Morning Offering – 5 May – Third Sunday of Easter, Year C

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary
Before Holy Mass

O most blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of tenderness and mercy,
I, a miserable and unworthy sinner,
fly to you with all the affection of my heart
and I beseech your motherly love,
that, as you stood by your most dear Son,
while he hung on the Cross,
so, in your kindness,
you may be pleased to stand by me, a poor sinner,
and all Priests who today are offering the Sacrifice
here and throughout the entire holy Church,
so that with your gracious help
we may offer a worthy and acceptable oblation
in the sight of the most high and undivided Trinity.
Amen.

(This prayer is adapted from the Priests’ Prayers Before each Mass)prayer-to-the-blessed-virgin-before-mass-15-april-2018.jpg

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 5 May – Saint Nunzio Sulprizio (1917-1836)

Saint of the Day – 5 May – Saint Nunzio Sulprizio (1917-1836) Aged 19 – Layman – also known as “Nuntius” born on 13 April 1817 at Pescosansonesco, Pescara, Abruzzi, Italy and died on 5 May 1836 in Naples, Italy.   Patronages – the disabled, blacksmiths, Workers, Pescosansonesco.   St Nunzio suffered from poor health during his brief life and was considered by those who knew him to be a gentle and pious individual.   He was Beatified in late 1963 by St Pope Paul VI, after the recognition of two miracles (direct healings) attributed to his intercession.   Pope Francis confirmed his Canonisation on 8 June 2018 after the confirmation of a third miracle and Nunzio was Canonised on 14 October 2018, together with Blessed Pope Paul VI, Blessed Oscar Romero (martyr) and others.st-nunzio-sulprizio.11

Nunzio Sulprizio was born on 13 April 1817 to Domenico Sulprizio and Rosa Luciani just after Easter.    He was named after his paternal grandfather Nunzio who died on 8 September 1803.   His parents had married on 28 May 1816 and he was born during a time of great famine.   He was baptised before sunset mere hours after his birth.   His parents took him to the Bishop of Sulmona Francesco Tiberi on 16 May 1820 so he could receive his Confirmation in the faith.Nunzio_Sulprizio.svg

His father died on 31 July 1820 and his mother remarried in 1822 for financial support to a much older man, his little sister Domenica died just months after their father on 7 December 1820.   His stepfather viewed Sulprizio with little more than harshness and contempt.   The relationship between the two was nonexistent and Sulprizio bonded more with his mother and maternal grandmother.   During this period of his childhood,  he attended the school in Corvara that the priest De Fabiis managed.    It was around this time, he also started to attend school that a local priest ran where he learned to read and to write.   In his childhood, he took the time to attend Mass and come to know Jesus Christ but also to follow His example and that of the saints.

His mother died on 5 March 1823 and he was sent to live with his maternal grandmother Anna Rosaria Luciani del Rossi who was illiterate but firm in the faith.   The two often took walks together and attended Mass on a regular basis.   He also began to attend the school for poor students that Father Fantacci managed but his grandmother died only 3 years later, on 4 April 1826.

It was following this that his uncle – Domenico Luciani, took him on as an apprentice blacksmith.    His uncle was harsh on him and often left him without proper nourishment and did not feed him if he decided that Nunzio needed either discipline or correction.   He sent Nunzio to run errands regardless of the distance which put a great strain upon him.   He was also beaten or cursed.   The work was too heavy for his frail frame and his young age.   He contracted a disease in 1831.   This occurred one winter morning when his uncle sent him to the slopes of Rocca Tagliata for supplies.  That evening he became feverish and had a swollen leg and a burning temperature,  forcing him to bed.   He did not mention this to his uncle, though the next morning he could no longer stand.   His uncle was indifferent to his suffering.   His condition was later diagnosed as gangrene in one leg.    He was hospitalised first in L’Aquila between April and June and then in Naples.   Despite his pain he dealt with it with patience and his offering his pain to God.st nunzio sulprizio holy card

During his illness at home he needed to clean his sore on a constant basis since it oozed puss.   There was one occasion where he went to a stream close to home to clean his wound but a woman who came to wash her clothes chased him away, after telling him that he would pollute the water.   Instead he found another stream and was able to recite several rosaries as he let the water clean his sore.

In the hospital, Nunzio later met his paternal uncle – Francesco Sulprizio (a soldier) – who introduced him to a fellow soldier, Colonel Felice Wochinger.   His uncle introduced him to that colonel in 1832.   The two’s relationship soon grew until it became that of father and son.   St Gaetano Errico (1791-1860), a priest  – promised him that he would admit him into his religious order when the time was right.   On 20 June 1832 he entered the Hospital of the Incurables to seek further treatment with the colonel providing for all his needs during this time.   He also prepared for his First Communion and was enthusiastic about receiving it earlier, despite the fact that rules dictated that he had to be fifteen.   He was sent by the Colonel for spa treatments on the island of Ischia and was able to abandon crutches in favour of a simple walking stick.st nuntius sulprizio

In 1835 the doctors decided to amputate his leg as their sole option but his pain continued.   His situation worsened in March 1836 and his suffering increased when his fever increased.   He continued to place his trust in God and was well aware of the fact that the end was near.   Two months later on the date of his death he asked for a crucifix to be brought to him before summoning his confessor to receive the sacraments for the last time.   He died in 1836.    His remains are now located in the Church of San Domenico Soriano in Naples.   Decades after his death Pope Leo XIII proposed Sulprizio as a model for workers.

The miracle that led to his Canonisation concerned a man who was injured in a motorbike accident who fell into a coma.   One relic of St Nunzio was – at the request of his relations – placed in his hospital room.   Almost a week later his parents were told he had made remarkable progress and had awakened from his coma and not in a vegetative state as was predicted by all the doctors concerned.st nunzio canonisation

MARIO DI DONATO, BEATO NUNZIO SULPRIZIO Olio su tela 1995