Second Thoughts of the Day – 4 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – The Memorial of St Francis Caracciolo CRM (1563-1591) Priest, Founder
From the Clerics Regular Minor – Adorno Fathers
In the church of San Lorenzo in Lucina in Rome, there is a sacred image of the Blessed Mother entitled, LA MADONNA DELLA SANITÀ, or rendered in English as Our Lady of Health.
This ancient image had been lost for centuries but was rediscovered as the structure was being restored in the church during the time of Pope Sixtus V. It was moved to the main altar above the painting of the Crucifixion by Guido Reni, see below.
A few years later, Pope Paul V entrusted this church to the Clerics Regular Minor.
His Holiness, who had great esteem for St Francis Caracciolo, spoke to him at length about the Sacred Image of the Madonna, recommending its veneration, entitled Our Lady of Health, in regard to the many graces which were granted to the sick, even during times of plague.
The Clerics Regular Minor promulgated this devotion among the faithful over the years.
In 1867, when a terrible plague afflicted the City of Rome, the faithful of San Lorenzo in Lucina, encouraged by the Clerics Regular Minor, invoked Mary’s aid under this title by reviving this devotion and they were freed from the scourge of cholera.
In 1868, in thanksgiving for graces received, a booklet entitled “Cenni Istorici della Madonna della Sanità di S. Lorenzo in Lucina “ with prayers was published.
Let us invoke the aid of the Blessed Mother under the title of “LA MADONNA DELLA SANITÀ” during this time of for the end of the evil virus and the conversion of sinners.
PRAYER TO OUR LADY OF HEALTH—PREGHIERA ALLA MADONNA DELLA SANITÀ
God gave you, O pre-elected Mary, Mother of the eternal Word, who through such a lofty dignity, filled you with divine Wisdom, who became the wonder of the Angels, the marvel of the world, the Queen of Heaven, the Cooperator of Christ in the redemption of the whole human family and our Mother of love and mercy. Oh! full of joy, we praise and thank the Divine Word for having graced you with so many sublime gifts, enriched by His divine Wisdom. Though we are wretched sinners but humbled and repentant, we turn to your Son Jesus, our Advocate before His Divine Father and to you, our most wise Mother of Mercy, to obtain for us the forgiveness of our sins with sincere sorrow. Say unto the Divine Child, whom you hold close to your bosom, that we strive to be devout and offer Him our repentant hearts again and we will be saved. Give us those graces and help that we need for the benefit of our eternal salvation. Help every devoted infirm person, who trusts in you, by means of this devout exercise to this prodigious Imagine for those who have recourse to you. The favours and graces which you always give to those who trust in you are innumerable and, the new graces, you have obtained, show us that you are for us always, our Mother of Health. Oh Our most loving Mother, obtain for us again from your Son Jesus, our most lovable Redeemer, that we may always trust in His infinite merits and in your most powerful intercession, to obtain, with the graces that we ask for in our temporal needs, the eternal salvation of our souls. AMEN
Thought for the Day – 4 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Sacred Heart of Jesus
and the Blessed Eucharist
“It is from the loving Heart of Jesus that His innumerable gifts come to us – His graces, the Sacraments, the supernatural work of our redemption.
His many acts of mercy and compassion, of which we read in the pages of the Gospel, show us the immensity of the love which His Heart bore for us.
The greatest of all His gifts to us, is the Eucharist, for in the Eucharist, He gives us, not merely His gifts but Himself, the Author of all these gifts.
There are three great mysteries which show us, in a special way, the infinite love of God for us and indicate, although in a manner which we cannot clearly comprehend, that He is love itself. “God is love.” (1 Jn 4:8)
These three mysteries are the Creation, the Incarnation and the Eucharist.
God, infinitely perfect and happy in Himself, wished to impart something of His infinite perfection.
He created the universe and made man master of it.
But, ungrateful man separated himself from God by sin.
He became engulfed in an abyss of evil from which he was incapable of rising to return to God, his only good.
Then God, in another mysterious act of love, became man.
The Eternal Word assumed a human form, taught us the way to Heaven, gave us the means of reaching it and died for our sins on the Cross.
We could never meditate sufficiently on this profound mystery of love.
There was more to follow, however.
When Jesus was returning to His heavenly Father, He wished to remain among us.
During His earthly life, He had given Himself completely up, to the final immolation on Calvary.
But, He wished to give us Himself for all time, until the end of the world.
This is the explanation of the Eucharist, which is Jesus dwelling amongst us as our nourishment and as our consolation in life and at the hour of death.
By means of this wonderful gift, we can live the life of Jesus Himself!”
Quote/s of the Day – 4 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – The Memorial of St Francis Caracciolo CRM (1563-1591) Priest, Founder
“Let’s go, let’s go to heaven.”
His last words
“The zeal of your house consumes me”
“My most beloved Lord, how good you are! Blood of Christ shed for me! It is mine, do not deny it to me because it is mine! O priests, strive to offer Mass everyday, inebriate yourselves with this blood. O Paradise, O Paradise, Blessed are those who live in your house, O Lord.”
One Minute Reflection – 4 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Thursday of the Ninth week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: 2 Timothy 2:8-15, Psalm 25:4-5, 8-10, 14, Mark 12:28-34
Jesus replied: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.” … Mark 12:29-31
REFLECTION – “It is God we love; love of God is the first commandment but the second is like it, namely, that it is only through others that we can return love for love to God.
The danger is when the second commandment becomes the first. However, we have a means of control which is to love each person, to love Christ, to love God in each person, without preference or distinction or exception.
The second danger is, that we cannot do it and will not do it, if we separate charity from faith and hope.
It is prayer that gives us faith and hope. Without prayer we won’t be able to love. …
Faith and hope infused by prayer, are what will clear the path of our love from its most cluttering obstacle – self-love.
The third danger is to love, not “as Jesus has loved us” but in a human fashion. And perhaps this is the greatest danger of all. …
It is not our own love we are to give, it is God’s love. The love of God, a divine person, the gift of God to us but which remains a gift, which has to pass through us, so to speak, to pierce us, in order go elsewhere, to enter others.” … Venerable Madeleine Delbrêl (1904-1964) Missionary to the Outcasts, Author, Poet, Mystic – Fulfilling even on this earth the love for which God has created us (The joy of believing)
PRAYER – God power and mercy, by whose grace, Your people give You praise and worthy service, help us to see Your face in our neighbour. To love them all as we love You. Save us from faltering on our way and grant us the joys You have promised. St Francis Caracciolo, you who loved even unto death, kindly assist our journey by your prayers. Through Jesus our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.
Our Morning Offering – 4 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Thursday of the Ninth week in Ordinary Time, Year A
Prayer to the Sacred Heart When the Clock strikes the Hour By St Gertrude the Great (1256-1302)
O most sweet Jesus,
I commend to Your Sacred Heart,
all that I have done in the hour that is gone,
to be cleansed and purified
and offered to God the Father,
for His eternal praise.
And whatsoever I shall do,
in the hour that is beginning,
I resolve to do
simply and purely,
for the glory of God
and for the salvation of all mankind,
in union with Your Passion.
Saint of the Day – 4 June – Saint Francis Caracciolo CRM (1563-1608) Priest, co-Founder of the Congregation of the Clerics Regular Minor with Venerable John Augustine (1551-1587) the “Adorno Fathers,” Confessor, Apostle of the Eucharistic Adoration – born as Ascanio Pisquizio on 13 October 1563 at his family’s castle at Villa Santa Maria, Abruzzi, Italy and died on 4 June 1608 at Agnone, Italy of a fever, aged 44. Patronages – Association of Italian Cooks (chosen in 1996), Naples, Italy (chosen in 1838).
Francis Caracciolo was born of a noble family on 13 October 1563 in Villa Santa Maria (Abruzzo Region). His parents, Ferrante Caracciolo and Isabella Baratucci Baptised him as Ascanio. He received an excellent educational formation and Catholic education and these showed from his virtues, evident from his early childhood.
When he was 22 years old, he was inflicted by a terrible disease which almost led him to death. In this trial he heard the Lord’s call and was ready to dedicate his life completely in the service of God and neighbour, if he would recover.
After his miraculous cure, Ascanio, faithful to his promise, renounced all his properties and noble titles. He left his home and went to Naples to prepare himself for the Priesthood. He was Ordained a Priest and joined the Confraternity of the White Servants of Justice (I Bianchi), a confraternity that looked after the spiritual welfare of prisoners and those condemned to death. It was located close to the Hospital of Incurables.
His real work was revealed to him, however, in 1587, when he mistakenly received a letter addressed to a relative of the same name, Father Fabrizio Caracciolo, the Abbot of St Mary Major in Naples. He learned from it that the writer, Father Augustine Adorno of Genoa, was planning to found a religious Order of Priests whose work would combine both active and contemplative life. The project appealed to Ascanio and he soon joined forces with Augustine Adorno and Fabrizio Caracciolo.
It was the period after the Council of Trent and Ascanio felt strongly the ideals of the Catholic Reform and saw this opportunity, as a providential sign from God. He immediately made himself available to the initiatives of Augustine and Fabrizio.
The three fathers retreated to the Camaldolese hermitage in Naples to write the first Constitutions of the Order. In addition to the three evangelical counsels of chastity, poverty and obedience, they contemplated a fourth vow – the renunciation of any ecclesiastical dignity. A particular dedication to the divine worship centred on the Eucharistic Devotions nourished by the Circular Prayer and an austere life expressed in the Circular Penitence were indicated as the main qualities of the spirituality of the new religious Order.
After their stay in the hermitage, Ascanio and Augustine went on foot to Rome to ask for the Papal approval. Sixtus V granted their petition and on 1 July 1588, the new Religious Order was approved under the name of Clerics Regular Minor.
Augustine Adorno and Ascanio Caracciolo made their Religious Profession in the Chapel of the White Servants of Justice (I Bianchi) in Naples on 9 April 1589. Ascanio took the name Francis in honour of his devotion to St Francis of Assisi. They chose the motto: Ad Maiorem Resurgentis Gloriam – For the greater glory of the Risen Christ.
The first community of the Clerics Regular Minor lived and carried out their apostolate at the Church of Mercy in Naples. A few days later, they went on a journey to Spain with the intent of establishing the Order there. They were unsuccessful in establishing the Congregation but, they made contacts with other religious orders and leaders. They came back to Naples after a very tiring trip which caused Francis enormous suffering.
In 1591, while Francis took possession of the Church of St Mary Major in Naples, Augustine Adorno went to Rome for the ratification of the approval of the Order by Pope Gregory XIV. The Pope graciously granted the new Order all the same privileges that other religious institutes have.
In September of the same year, Augustine died prematurely at the age of 40. Most of the responsibilities and concerns of the new religious family fell upon Francis, who became the first Superior General during the First General Chapter in 1593. He accepted out of obedience the office for three years.
Francis was convinced of the necessity of expansion of the Order in Spain. He left for another time with Father Giuseppe Imparato and Brother Lorenzo D’ponte on 10 April 1594. He did his works of apostolate at the Hospital of the Italians in Madrid. The hard work and faith which Francis dedicated to the mission bore its first fruits on 25 July 1595, when he obtained the permission to open a religious house dedicated to St Joseph in Madrid. His success through his zealous priestly works provoked hostility of some people against the Order. Francis, solid in his faith, overcame all the difficult moments and left Spain for Italy in June 1596.
The first religious house in Rome was founded at the Church of St Leonard. He sent the first group of clerics to reside in this house.
In November 1596, Francis returned to Naples, where, after lots of hesitation, accepted to share the charge as Superior General for another year. This was the 23 May 1597.
After he obtained for the Order the Church of St Agnes in Piazza Navona and after his resignation as Superior General, Francis left for his third journey to Spain (September 1598). During his stay, he opened the religious houses in Valladolid and Alcala de Hanares. When returned to Rome, he was elected Vicar General for Italy and Superior of St Mary Major in Naples. In his humility, he asked the Pope Paul V to be spared from this position but in vain. The Order obtained from the same Pontiff the Roman Basilica of San Lorenzo in Lucina.
Francis’ health became weaker because of his austere life. Despite all limitations, he did not hesitate from undertaking his last journey with his brother, Father Antonio of the Theatine Fathers, which led them to Loreto, Villa Santa Maria and Agnone (Molise Region) to accommodate the request of opening a new religious house there.
Upon his arrival to Agnone, Francis was physically tired and fell ill. On 4 June 1608, he died uttering the words: “Let’s go, let’s go to heaven.”
His body was given enough preparation for a long journey to Naples. Truly, God has left His own sign on him. When the body was lanced, the blood spouted a red and scented fluid and his vital organs were uncorrupted. Around his heart were printed the words of the Psalm: “The zeal of your house consumes me” (Ps 69:10).
St Francis Caracciolo was Beatified by Pope Clement XIV on 4 June 1769 and Canonised by Pope Pius VII on 24 May 1807. In 1838 he was chosen as a Patron Saint of Naples, where his body lies. At first, he was buried in Basilica of St Mary Major but his remains were afterwards translated to the church of Santa Maria di Monteverginella, which was given in exchange to the Clerics Regular Minor (1823) after their suppression at the time of the French Revolution.
O Saint Francis Caracciolo, for that most ardent love which You brought to this earth and now in heaven you bring to Jesus Christ, our most loving Redeemer and to His ever Virgin Mother Mary Most Holy and for that tender charity with which You consoled and comforted the afflicted and troubled. Oh! obtain the deliverance of our present affliction and tribulation to this soul, which full of trust, has recourse to your loving and mighty patronage and at the same time, that humbly resigns itself to the supreme will of God, whose eternal honour and glory be given forever. AMEN (Clerics Regular Minor – Adorno Fathers)
St Aldegrin of Baume
St Alexander of Verona
Bl Antoni Zawistowski
St Aretius of Rome
Bl Boniface of Villers
St Breaca of Cornwall
St Buriana of Cornwall
St Christa of Sicily
St Clateus of Brescia
St Cornelius McConchailleach
St Cyrinus of Aquileia
St Dacian of Rome
St Edfrith of Lindisfarne
St Elsiar of Lavedan
St Ernin of Cluain St Filippo Smaldone (1848-1923) Biography: https://anastpaul.com/2018/06/04/saint-of-the-day-4-june-st-filippo-smaldone-1848-1923/
Bl Francesco Pianzola St Francis Caracciolo CRM (1563-1608) Priest, Founder
Bl Francis Ronci
Bl Margaret of Vau-le-Duc
Bl Menda Isategui
St Metrophanes of Byzantium
St Nicolo of Sardinia
St Optatus of Milevis
St Petroc of Cornwall
St Quirinus of Croatia
St Quirinus of Tivoli
St Rutilus of Sabaria
Saturnina of Arras
Bl Stanislaw Kostka Starowieyski
St Trano of Sardinia
St St Walter of Fontenelle
Walter of Serviliano
Martyrs of Cilicia – 13 saints: A group of 13 Christians who were martyred together. The only details about them that have survived are their names –
• Cama• Christa• Crescentia• Eiagonus• Expergentus• Fortunus• Italius
• Jucundian• Julia• Momna• Philip• Rustulus• Saturnin
They were martyred in in Cilicia, Asia Minor (in modern Turkey), date unknown
Martyrs of Nyon – 41 saints: A group of 41 Christians martyred together for refusing to sacrifice to imperial Roman idols. We know the names of some but no other details.
• Amatus• Attalus• Camasus• Cirinus• Dinocus• Ebustus• Euticus• Eutychius
• Fortunius• Galdunus• Julia• Quirinus• Rusticus• Saturnina• Saturninus
• Silvius• Uinnita• Zoticus
Martyred by being beheaded in Noviodunum (modern Nyon, Switzerland)