Thought for the Day – 15 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
“The greatest punishment, however, will be that of LOSS.
This is the knowledge that we have lost forever, our one, true and highest good.
The soul will now understand, fully, what it means to have lost God forever.
It will feel irresistibly, the need to be united with Him and to see, enjoy and love Him.
But, at the same time, it will KNOW that God has cast it away from Himself for all eternity, “Go, accursed soul, into everlasting fire!”
Then, the irresistible need for God, will turn to hate and eternal malediction.
The terrifying reality of hell, should not leave us amazed, as if it were an act of implacable severity.
Rather, it should be a warning to us.
God should not seem to us to be a pitiless judge but a judge who is infinitely just and infinitely good.
Rather than send us to hell, God gave us His only-begotten Son, Who died on the Cross for our sins.
Just as the Redemption is a work of infinite love and goodness, so hell is a work of infinite justice.
If we reflect on the mystery of the Incarnation, on the Redemption and on the death of the Son of God, it will appear that, omnipotent though He is, He could not have done more to save us.
The divine work of the Redemption explains the mystery of the eternity of hell.
It is not God Who is relentless.
It is the damned soul which was relentlessly ungrateful towards the infinitely good and merciful God.”
Quote/s of the Day – 15 January – Wednesday of the First week in Ordinary Time, Year A – The Memorial of St Arnold Janssen SVD (1837-1909)
“Proclamation of the Good News is the first and most significant expression, of love for one’s neighbour.”
St Arnold, in his youth, invented a means of personally keeping in contact with God. To do so, he prayed the acts of faith, hope and charity every quarter hour at the signal of the church tower clock or the chime of the clock at home or in school. He would pray:
O God, eternal truth, I believe in You. O God, our strength and salvation, I trust in You. O God, infinite goodness, I love You with my whole heart.
St Arnold Janssen (1837-1909)
Founder of the Missionaries of the Divine Word Missionary Sisters Servants of the Holy Spirit Holy Spirit Adoration Sisters
One Minute Reflection – 15 January – Wednesday of the First week in Ordinary Time, Year A – Readings: 1 Samuel 3:1-10, 19-20, Psalm 40:2, 5, 7-10, Mark 1:29-39 and the Memorial of St Arnold Janssen SVD (1837-1909)
And he came and took her by the hand and lifted her up and the fever left her and she served them...Mark 1:31
REFLECTION – “And he helped her up.” As she couldn’t stand up by herself, it was the Lord who helped her. “He grasped her hand and helped her up.” When Peter was in danger on the sea, just as he was going to drown, he too was grasped by the hand and raised up… What a beautiful sign of friendship and love towards this sick woman! He helped her up by taking her hand, His hand healed the sick woman’s hand. He grasped that hand as a doctor would have done, He, who is both doctor and remedy, took her pulse and assessed the gravity of the fever. Jesus touched it and the fever vanished.
Let us want Him to touch our hand so that in this way what we do may be made pure. Should He enter our house, let us get off our bed at last and not remain lying down. Jesus stands at our bedside and will we remain lying down? Come on! To your feet!… “There is one among you whom you do not recognise” (Jn 1:26), “the kingdom of God is among you” (Lk 17:21). Let us have faith and we shall see Jesus among us.”…St Jerome (347-420) Father & Doctor of the Church
PRAYER – God our Saviour, through the grace of Baptism, You made us children of light. You lead us by the hand and guide and protect us by Your commandments. Fill us with joy at Your nearness and the light of Your Son, by whose beam we see You and follow. St Arnold Janssen was a shining example to us all, grant, we pray, that his prayers may aid us. Through Jesus our Lord and Christ, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.
Our Morning Offering – 15 January – Wednesday of the First week in Ordinary Time, Year A and the Memorial of St Arnold Janssen SVD (1837-1909)
O My God, I Believe in You By St Arnold Janssen (1837-1909)
O my God,
I believe in You,
because You are
the eternal truth.
O my God,
I hope in You,
because You are
infinitely merciful, faithful and almighty.
O my God,
I love You with my whole heart
and am sorry for having offended You.
Out of love for me
You are present in the Blessed Sacrament,
therefore, I long for You,
O my dearest Jesus.
From the Father
send me the Holy Spirit
with His seven gifts,
that I may glorify God
in all things.
Saint of the Day – 15 January – St Arnold Janssen SVD (1837-1909) Priest, Founder, Missionary, Teacher, advocate of the Sacred Heart, Director of the Apostleship of Prayer, He founded the Society of the Divine Word, a Catholic missionary religious congregation, also known as the Divine Word Missionaries, as well as two congregations for women. In 1889 he founded in Steyl, Netherlands, the Missionary Sisters Servants of the Holy Spirit, SSpS and in 1896 at the same place the Holy Spirit Adoration Sisters, SSpSAP. He is the Patron of all of the Orders which he founded.
Arnold Janssen was born on 5 November 1837 in Goch, a small city in lower Rhineland (Germany). The second of ten children, his parents instilled in him a deep devotion to religion. He was Ordained a Priest on 15 August 1861 for the diocese of Muenster and was assigned to teach natural sciences and mathematics in a secondary school in Bocholt. There he was known for being a strict but just teacher. Due to his profound devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, he was named Diocesan Director for the Apostleship of Prayer. This apostolate encouraged Arnold to open himself to Christians of other denominations.
Little by little, he became more aware of the spiritual needs of people beyond the limits of his own Diocese, developing a deep concern for the universal mission of the church. He decided to dedicate his life to awaking in the German church its missionary responsibility. With this in mind, in 1873 he resigned from his teaching post and soon after founded The Little Messenger of the Sacred Heart. This popular monthly magazine presented news of missionary activities and it encouraged German-speaking Catholics to do more to help the missions.
These were difficult times for the Catholic Church in Germany. Bismark unleashed the “Kulturkampf» with a series of anti-Catholic laws, which led to the expulsion of Priests and Religious and to the imprisonment of many Bishops. In this chaotic situation, Arnold Janssen proposed that some of the expelled priests could go to the foreign missions or at least help in the preparation of missionaries. Slowly but surely and with a little prodding from the Apostolic Vicar of Hong Kong, Arnold discovered that God was calling him to undertake this difficult task. Many people said that he was not the right man for the job, or that the times were not right for such a project. Arnold’s answer was, “The Lord challenges our faith to do something new, precisely when so many things are collapsing in the Church.”
With the support of a number of Bishops, Arnold inaugurated the mission house on 8 September 1875 in Steyl, Holland and thus began the Divine Word Missionaries. Already on 2 March 1879 the first two missionaries set out for China. One of these was Joseph Freinademetz (1852-1908) – he would be Canonised on the same day as St Arnold.
Aware of the importance of publications for attracting vocations and funding, Arnold started a printing press just four months after the inauguration of the house. Thousands of generous lay persons, contributed their time and effort to mission animation in German-speaking countries, by helping to distribute the magazines from Steyl. From the beginning the new congregation developed as a community of both Priests and Brothers.
The volunteers at the mission house included women as well as men. From practically the very beginning, a group of women, including Blessed Maria Helena Stollenwerk, served the community. But their wish was to serve the mission as Religious Sisters. The faithful, selfless service they freely offered and a recognition of the important role women could play in missionary outreach, urged Arnold to found the mission congregation of the “Servants of the Holy Spirit,” SSpS, on 8 December 1889. The first Sisters left for Argentina in 1895.
In 1896 Fr Arnold selected some of the Sisters to form a cloistered branch, to be known as “Servants of the Holy Spirit of Perpetual Adoration,” SSpSAP. Their service to mission would be to maintain an uninterrupted adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, praying day and night for the church and especially for the other two active missionary congregations.
Arnold died on 15 January 1909. His life was filled with a constant search for God’s will, a great confidence in divine providence and hard work. That his work has been blessed is evident in the subsequent growth of the communities he founded – more than 6,000 Divine Word Missionaries are active in 63 countries, more than 3,800 missionary Servants of the Holy Spirit and more than 400 Servants of the Holy Spirit of Perpetual Adoration. … Vatican.va
St Arnold was Canonised on 5 October 2003, by St Pope John Paul II, together with St Joseph Freinademetz and St Daniel Camboni, Apostle of Africa.
Our Lady of Banneux, Belgium (under 2 Titles Our Lady of the Poor and Queen of Nations): Our Lady of Banneux, or Our Lady of the Poor, is the sobriquet given to the apparition of the Virgin Mary to Mariette Beco, an adolescent girl living in Banneux, province of Liège (Belgium). Between 15 January and 2 March 1933, Beco told her family and parish priest of seeing a Lady in white who declared herself to be the “Virgin of the Poor,” saying I come to relieve suffering and believe in me and I will believe in you.
St Alexander of Goma
Bl Angelus of Gualdo Tadini St Arnold Janssen SVD (1837-1909)
Bl Peter of Castelnau
St Probus of Rieti
St Romedio of Nonsberg
St Secondina of Anagni
St Secundina of Rome
St Tarsicia of Rodez
Martyrs of Suances – 5 beati: A priest and four laymen in the archdiocese of Burgos, Spain who were martyred together in the Spanish Civil War.
• Blessed Donato Rodríguez García
• Blessed Emilio Huidobro Corrales
• Blessed Germán García y García
• Blessed Valentín Palencia Marquina
• Blessed Zacarías Cuesta Campo
They were martyred on
15 January 1937 near Suances, Cantabria, Spain
Venerated on 30 September 2015 by Pope Francis (decree of heroic virtues)
and Beatified on 23 April 2016 by Pope Francis. The beatification was celebrated in Burgos, Spain, presided by Cardinal Angelo Amato.