Announcing a Novena to St Anne – Begins Wednesday 17 July

Announcing a Novena to St Anne – Begins Wednesday 17 July

We begin the Nine Day Novena to St Anne, mother of the Blessed Virgin Mary and grandmother of Jesus Christ, on Wednesday this week.

The Feasts of St Anne and her husband St Joachim are celebrated on 26 July.    St Anne is the patron of childless couples, homemakers, mothers and grandparents.   She is invoked for safe and healthy childbirth and against sterility.   But her patronages are manifold and include children, housewives, lost articles, moving house, poverty, child-care providers and more.   I think most importantly, as the mother of our most beloved Mother Mary and the Grandmother of Jesus, her intercession and influence, on our behalf, extends to whatever needs we may bring to her.

So let us pray!

st anne novena begins 17 july - made 15 july 2019


Thought for the Day – 15 July – ‘Meditation on Christ in His humanity …’

Thought for the Day – 15 July – Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 10:34-11,1 and The Memorial of St Bonaventure OFM (1221-1274) Seraphic Doctor of the Church

Saint Bonaventure saw the spires of the great cathedrals reaching up to heaven as a reflection of the human soul’s reaching up to God in his The Soul’s Journey into God. Likewise, the streams of light coming into the church through the stained-glass windows, reflect God expressing Himself, in the wide variety of creatures upon whom He showers His gifts of grace.

And the images go on and on as the saint reaches into human experience of creation and cultural artifacts and finds vestigium (the footprints) of God since everything in creation, reflects in some way, the grandeur of God.   Human beings, of course, are the actual image of God.

It was this ability to take the spirituality of Saint Francis—as reflected in Saint Francis’ Canticle of the Sun, for instance—and place it at the heart of his writings, keeping the simplicity of the Franciscan insights and creating a sublime theology, that truly deserves the name “Seraphic.”

When Bonaventure was declared a Doctor of the Universal Church in 1588 by Pope Sixtus V, he was given the title “Seraphic Doctor.”   Merriam-Webster defines a seraph as one of the highest-ranking angels as well as “one of the six-winged angels standing in the presence of God.”   It was as a seraph that Christ appeared to Saint Francis when he received the stigmata on Mount La Verna.   Therefore, it is fitting to use the term to describe the soaring mysticism of Saint Bonaventure.

In his General Audience on 3 March 2010, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about the life of St Bonaventure.   He called to mind the great works of literature, art, philosophy and theology that were inspired by the Christian faith during the time period in which the saint lived.

“Among the great Christian figures who contributed to the composition of this harmony between faith and culture, Bonaventure stands out, a man of action and contemplation, of profound piety and prudent government,” Pope Benedict said.

The Pope called on the faithful to take note of “the central role that Christ always played in Bonaventure’s life and teaching,” and to imitate the way in which “the whole of his thinking was profoundly Christocentric.”

“Meditation on Christ in His humanity is corporeal in deed, in fact but spiritual in mind. . . . By adopting this habit, you will steady your mind, be trained to virtues and receive strength of soul….Let meditation of Christ’s life be your one and only aim, your rest, your food, your desire, your study.” – St Bonaventure

St Bonaventure, Pray for us!let meditationof christ's life - st bonaventure pray for us 15 july 2019.jpg


Quote/s of the Day – 15 July – The wisdom of St Bonaventure

Quote/s of the Day – 15 July – Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 10:34-11,1 and The Memorial of St Bonaventure (1221-1274) Doctor of the Church

“Every creature
is a divine word
because it
proclaims God.”every-creature-st-bonaventure-15-july-2018.jpg

“In all your deeds and words,
you should look upon this Jesus, as your model.
Do so, whether you are walking
or keeping silence,
or speaking,
whether you are alone or with others.
He is perfect
and thus, you will be,
not only irreprehensible
but praiseworthy.”in all your deeds and words - st bonaventure 15 july 2019.jpg

“Christ has something in common with all creatures.
With the stone He shares existence,
with the plants He shares life,
with the animals He shares sensation
and with the angels He shares intelligence.
Thus all things are transformed in Christ
since in the fullness of His nature,
He embraces some part of every creature.”christ-has-something-in-common-st-bonaventure-15-july-2018.jpg

“We must beg the Holy Spirit,
with ardent longing, to give us these fruits.
The Holy Spirit alone,
knows how to bring to light,
the sweetness hidden away
under the rugged exterior of the words of the Law.
We must go to the Holy Spirit for interior guidance.”we-must-beg-the-holy-spirit-st-bonaventure-15-july-2018.jpg

“Since happiness is nothing else
than the enjoyment of the Supreme Good
and the Supreme Good is above us,
no-one can enjoy happiness,
unless he rises above himself.”since happiness is nothing else - st bonaventure 15 july 2019.jpg

“God might have created a more beautiful world,
He might have made heaven more glorious
but it was impossible for Him, to exalt a creature,
higher than Mary, in making her His Mother.”

St Bonaventure (1221-1274) Doctor of the Churchgod might have created a more beautiful world - st bonaventure 15 july 2019.jpg


One Minute Reflection – 15 July -‘… but not more than you love your God!’

One Minute Reflection – 15 July – Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 10:34-11:1 and The Memorial of St Bonaventure (1221-1274) Doctor of the Church and Bl Anne-Marie Javouhey (1779-1851)

“Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me…” … Matthew 10:37

REFLECTION – “It is to those who are on fire with love or, rather, those He wants to set on fire with this love, that our Saviour addresses these words.   For our Saviour has not done away with but regulated, the love we owe to parents, spouse, children.   He did not say:  “Those who love them” but “Those who love them more than me”…   Love your father but love the Lord even more,  love him who brought you into the world but love yet more he who gave you being.   It was your father who brought you into the world but it was not he who created you, since he did not know, when he bred you, who you would be or what you would become.   It was your father who fed you but he is not the origin of the food that staunched your hunger.   Finally, your father must die if you are to inherit his goods but you will share the inheritance God intends for you, while living with him eternally.

So love your father but not more than you love your God, love your mother but love still more the Church who has begotten you into eternal life…   Indeed, if you owe such gratitude to those who begot you for mortality, what kind of love do you owe to those who begot you for eternity?   Love your spouse, love your children as God does, to lead them to serve God together with you and then, when you are reunited, you will not be afraid of being separated.   Your love for your family would indeed fall short if you did not lead them to God…

Take up your cross and follow the Lord.   Your Saviour Himself, wholly God as He was in the flesh, clothed with your flesh, He, too, showed human feelings when He said – “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me,” (Mt 26:39)…   The servant’s nature with which He clothed Himself for your sake caused His human voice, the voice of His flesh, to be heard.   He took your voice so as to express your weakness and give you His strength… and to show you, whose will to prefer.”… St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor of the Church – Sermon 344, #2-3matthew 10 37 whoever lovs father or mother - so love your father but not more - st augustine 15 july 2019.jpg

PRAYER – God our Father, we are Your children and You have set us aside to come home to You by the light of the way of Your divine Son.   Grant we pray, that we may grow in faith and love daily, by the intercession of Saint Bonaventure and Blessed Anne-Marie Javouhey (1779-1851) and may be a light of love, to all around us, as they were.   We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever, bonaventure pray for us 15 july 2019

bl anne-marie javouhey pray for us 15 july 2019

Posted in 7 GIFTS of the HOLY SPIRIT, DOCTORS of the Church, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY

Our Morning Offering – 15 July – Prayer for the Gifts of the Holy Spirit

Our Morning Offering – 15 July – Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C

Prayer for the Gifts
of the Holy Spirit
By St Bonaventure (1221-1274) – Seraphic Doctor of the Church

We beg the all-merciful Father through You,
His only-begotten Son made man for our sake,
crucified and glorified for us,
to send upon us, from His treasure-house,
the Spirit of sevenfold grace,
Who rested upon You in all His fullness.

The spirit of wisdom,
enabling us to relish the fruit of the tree of life,
which is indeed Yourself.
The gift of understanding:
to enlighten our perceptions.
The gift of prudence,
enabling us to follow in Your footsteps.
The gift of strength:
to withstand our adversary’s onslaught.
The gift of knowledge,
to distinguish good from evil
by the light of Your holy teaching.
The gift of piety,
to clothe ourselves with charity and mercy.
The gift of fear,
to withdraw from all ill-doing
and live quietly in awe
of Your eternal majesty.

These are the things for which we petition.
Grant them for the honour of Your Holy Name,
to which, with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
be all honour and glory, thanksgiving, renown
and Lordship forever and ever.
Amenprayer for the seven gifts of the holy spirit by st bonaventure - 30 oct 2018 mem of st angelo of acri.jpg

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 15 July – Blessed Anne-Mary Javouhey (1779-1851)

Saint of the Day – 15 July – Blessed Anne-Mary Javouhey (1779-1851) aged 71 – Religious Sister, Missionary and Founder of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Cluny.   She was born on 10 November 1779 at Jallanges, France and died on 15 July 1851 at Paris, France of natural causes.   She is known as the Liberator of the Slaves in the New World, a 19th-century “Mother Teresa” and as the mother of the town of Mana, French Guiana.  Patronages – Jallasnages, Mana and the Sisters she founded.   During the French Revolution through her teen years, she helped to hide and care for a number of priests persecuted by the French Revolution, including keeping watch for them as they said Mass.

Imagine a Mother Teresa in the France of Napoleon’s day and you will have a picture of Anne-Marie Javouhey.   Nanette, as she was called, was a “velvet brick,” a thin layer of gentleness covering her determined core.   A competent leader, Nanette dominated every scene in her adventurous life.Bl.-Anne-Marie-Javouhey

In 1800, she tested her vocation with the Sisters of Charity at Besançon.   One night she heard a voice say, “You will accomplish great things for me.”   A few nights later, St. Teresa of Ávila with black, brown and bronze children appeared to her.   “God wants you to found a congregation to care for these children,” said the saint.

In 1801, Nanette and her three natural sisters opened a school for poor children near Chamblanc.  Anne-Marie-JavouheyDuring the next decade she ran two day schools and an orphanage.   In 1812 she founded the Sisters of St Joseph of Cluny.   Then the dam burst, with demand for her sisters’ services clamouring throughout France.

Nanette, now Mother Javouhey, held her sisters to a high ideal of community life that she articulated in the following correspondence to them:

“As we are joined together in community, we should live in unity with all its members, having one heart and soul.   We should be always willing to labour and suffer privations without troubling others.   We must possess nothing of our own, aware that everything belongs to the community according to the spirit of community life.

If we find that we are in want for certain things—and surely we will be often—we should rejoice because holy poverty does not imply that we should want nothing.   But rather, it means that we should be happy to do without anything for the sake of God and the sake of others.

Each sister should be prepared to accept willingly the duties assigned to her, no matter how hard or how menial they may appear…”

In 1817, Mother Javouhey sent sisters to the African island of Reunion to open her first missionary outpost.  bl anne-marie lifeIt wasn’t long before she had sisters serving black, brown and bronze people at remote places in Africa at Senegal, Sierra Leone and Gambia and in South America at French Guiana.   With dogged faith the sisters battled extreme hardship everywhere.

At the government’s request, Mother Javouhey undertook some very unusual tasks.   For example, she spent four years supervising the establishment of a colony for blacks at Mana, French Guiana.   Then in 1834 she accepted the most remarkable assignment of her life.   Six hundred slaves were to be liberated in Guiana and she was asked to prepare them for emancipation by training them in the ways of religion and civilised society.   As each family was ready to be freed, Mother Javouhey arranged for them to have money, some land and a anne-marie javouhey

Anne-Marie Javouhey spent the last years of her life in France directing the work of her burgeoning congregation.   When she died in 1851, her sisters were in thirty-two countries and colonies.   Today, the Congregation of the Sisters of St Joseph of Cluny numbers close to 3,000 Sisters serving in over 60 countries, including the United States, Canada, India and Ireland.

When news of her death in 1851 reached the black population of French Guiana, there was general grief for “the mother of the slaves”.   Blessed Anne-Marie was Beatified on 15 October 1950 by Ven Pope Pius anne marie lg statue face.jpg

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 15 July

St Bonaventure of Bagnoregio OFM (1221-1274) – Seraphic Doctor of the Church -(Memorial)
St Bonaventure!

Dispersion of the Apostles:   Commemorates the missionary work of the Twelve Apostles. It was first mentioned in the 11th century and was celebrated in the northern countries of Europe during the Middle Ages. It is now observed in Germany, Poland and some dioceses of England, France and the United States.

St Abundantia of Spoleto
St Abudemius of Bozcaada
St Adalard the Younger
St Anrê Nguyen Kim Thông
Bl Anne-Mary Javouhey (1779-1851)
Bl Antoni Beszta-Borowski
St Apronia
St Athanasius of Naples
St Antiochus of Sebaste
St Benedict of Angers
Bl Bernard of Baden
St David of Sweden
St Donivald
St Eberhard of Luzy
St Edith of Tamworth
St Eternus
St Felix of Pavia
St Gumbert of Ansbach
St Haruch of Werden
St Jacob of Nisibis
St Joseph Studita of Thessalonica
Bl Michel-Bernard Marchand
Bl Peter Aymillo
St Phêrô Nguyen Bá Tuan
St Plechelm of Guelderland
Bl Roland of Chézery
St Valentina of Nevers
St Vladimir I of Kiev

Martyred Jesuit Missionaries of Brazil – 40 beati: A band of forty Spanish, Portugese and French Jesuit missionaries martyred by the Huguenot pirate Jacques Sourie while en route to Brazil. They are –
• Aleixo Delgado • Alonso de Baena • álvaro Borralho Mendes • Amaro Vaz • André Gonçalves • António Correia • Antônio Fernandes • António Soares • Bento de Castro • Brás Ribeiro • Diogo de Andrade • Diogo Pires Mimoso • Domingos Fernandes • Esteban Zuraire • Fernando Sánchez • Francisco Alvares • Francisco de Magalhães • Francisco Pérez Godoy • Gaspar Alvares • Gonçalo Henriques • Gregorio Escribano • Ignatius de Azevedo • Iõao • João Fernandes • João Fernandes • Juan de Mayorga • Juan de San Martín • Juan de Zafra • Luís Correia • Luís Rodrigues • Manuel Alvares • Manuel Fernandes • Manuel Pacheco • Manuel Rodrigues • Marcos Caldeira • Nicolau Dinis • Pedro de Fontoura • Pedro Nunes • Simão da Costa • Simão Lopes •
They were martyed on 15 and 16 July 1570 on the ship Santiago near Palma, Canary Islands. They were beatified on 11 May 1854 by Pope Pius IX.

Martyrs of Alexandria – 13 saints: Thirteen Christians who were martyred together. We know the names of three, no details about them and the other ten were all children. – Narseus, Philip and Zeno. Martyred in the early 4th-century in Alexandria, Egypt.

Martyrs of Carthage – 9 saints: A group of nine Christians who were martyred together. We know nothing else but their names – Adautto, Catulinus, Felice, Florentius, Fortunanziano, Januarius, Julia, Justa and Settimino. They were martyred in Carthaginian and their relics at the basilica of Fausta at Carthage.

Martyrs of Pannonia – 5 saints: Five 4th-century martyrs killed together. No information about them has survived except the names – Agrippinus, Fortunatus, Martialis, Maximus and Secundinus.