Thought for the Day – 8 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
Falling into Sin
“The just man falls seven times,” says the Book of Proverbs (24:16).
Unfortunately, we have all experienced how true this is. “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves” (Cf 1 Jn 1:8).
We fall often, in many ways – in thought, in speech, in action and by omission.
Sometimes, we fall in a moment of weakness or of impatience, at other times, we sin by an act of premeditated malice. “Watch and pray,” Our Lord warns us, “that you may not enter into temptation” (Mt 26:41).
Our Lord also said that we “must always pray not lose heart” (Lk 18:1).
In other words, we should have a spirit of prayer which is based on the love of God and keeps us close to Him.
It is only when we are united to God, that temptations cannot hurt us and we are protected by His grace, from falling into deliberate sin.
It is idle to protest that this would require the virtue of anchorite and that we are entangled in all kinds of other business.
Virtue is necessary for everybody, not only for anchorites. “The kingdom of heaven has been enduring violent assulat and the violent have been seizing it by force” (Mt 11:12).
In order to attain to the kingdom of God, therefore, we have to do violence to our corrupted nature.
A life of solitude is not essential for prayer, however.
One can be busy from morning till night and pray continuously, so that his work is offered to God and done for the love of God.
In this way, work becomes prayer and will save us from falling into sin.”
Quote/s of the Day – 9 July – The Memorial of Blessed Marija of Jesus Crucified Petković (1892-1966)
“Love infinitely, the most sweet Lord Jesus Christ, do everything for Him alone and spend your life, in works of mercy and of love.”
Bl Marija of Jesus Crucified Petković (1892-1966)
“Through Him, our gaze penetrates the heights of heaven and we see, as in a mirror, the most holy face of God. Through Christ, the eyes of our hearts are opened and our weak and clouded understanding, reaches up toward the light.”
St Pope Clement I (c 35-99)
Apostolic Father, Bishop of Rome and Martyr
“In the morning let your first act be to greet My Heart and to offer Me your own. Whoever, breathes a sigh toward Me, draws Me to himself.”
Jesus to St Matilda/Mechtilde of Hackeborn
“O blessed Jesus, give me stillness of soul in You. Let Your mighty calmness reign in me. Rule me, O King of Gentleness, King of Peace.”
St John of the Cross (1542-1591)
Doctor of the Church
“You leave the land just as it is when you depart, you do not carry anything away. Our first aim is to go to God, we are not on earth for anything but this!”
St John Vianney (1786-1859)
“Do everything out of love for God, for God, with God, to get to God.”
Bl Maria Rosa Flesch (1826-1906)
“The well-being of souls is only in Christ. Therefore, let the love of Jesus be our perfection and our profession, let us light our hearts from the eternal flames of love that radiate from the Sacred Heart of Jesus.”
“Go for the love of Jesus, for the interests of Jesus and Jesus will always be at your side, always in your heart.”
One Minute Reflection – 9 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Thursday of the Fourteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: Hosea 11:1-4, 8-9, Psalm 80:2-3, 15-16, Matthew 10:7-15 and the Memorial of Blessed Marija of Jesus Crucified Petković (1892-1966)
“And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’” … Matthew 10:7
REFLECTION – “We Missionaries often wonder why the work of the conversion of the non-Christian world goes so slowly. We usually give various reasons to explain this painful fact and in truth, the problem may be considered from many angles, some of which do not concern our responsibility. But, for the part that does concern us and it is the main part, the problem has a very clear solution. To save the world, God in His infinite wisdom wanted to have co-workers. God does His part well – do the people called to help Him do their part equally well?
Let us work in such a way that the whole Church, all Christian people, led by their Bishops and clergy, truly feel the apostolic duty that is incumbent upon them to promote the propagation of the faith, with every means. Let us work in such a way that that Missionaries, the most direct instruments for the conversion of souls, are saints and non-Christians will not be slow to be converted.
… You, Missionaries in active service in the field, are particularly concerned with your part of co-operation. Therefore, I say to you, be holy Missionaries by following the footsteps of those great Missionaries who went before you and, for the part that concerns you, your apostolic duty will have been done to the full. The souls the Lord, in His merciful designs, has entrusted to each one of you that you may lead them to salvation, will be saved and at the end of your days you will be able to say with the Divine Redeemer: “(Father) I kept those you had given me true to you name. I have watched over them and not one is lost” (Jn 17:12).” … Blessed Paolo Manna PIME (1872-1952) Superior General of the PIME Founder of the Pontifical Missionary Union – “Holiness is the Soul of Mission”
PRAYER – “Lord, You have called us to the apostolate with the witness of our life and the proclamation of the Gospel, may we contribute to the coming of Your Kingdom in the nations to which you send us. Lord, You wish us to be Missionaries in communion with the Churches that have given us the faith and richness of Christian life, keep us united to our bishops and to the people they guide, that together we may carry out the mission You have entrusted to us in their name. Lord, You wanted our parents and benefactors, through their generosity and sacrifices, to participate in our apostolic life, may they share the reward You have prepared for those who work for the coming of Your Kingdom throughout the world. Merciful Lord, during their earthly life You assigned our deceased brethren the task of spreading Your Word, may they receive the reward for their apostolate in the glory of heaven. AMEN” … (From the Manual of PIME MIssionaries) And Lord, may the prayers of Your holy men and women, today we call on Bl Marija of Jesus Crucified Petković, who proclaimed Your Kingdom by her life, be every heard for our intercession.
Our Morning Offering – 9 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Thursday of the Fourteenth week in Ordinary Time
May I Be United With You, Good Jesus By St Peter Canisius (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church
Let my eyes take their sleep
but may my heart always
keep watch for You.
May Your right hand bless Your servants
who love You.
May I be united with the praise
that flows from You, Lord Jesus,
to all your saints;
united with the gratitude
drawn from Your heart, good Jesus,
that causes Your saints to thank You;
united with Your passion, good Jesus,
by which You took away our guilt;
united with the divine longing
that You had on earth, for our salvation;
united with every prayer
that welled from Your divine Heart, good Jesus
and flowed into the hearts of Your saints.
Saint of the Day – 9 July – Blessed Marija of Jesus Crucified Petković (1892-1966) Religious Sister and Foundress of the Congregation of the Daughters of Mercy of St Francis. Born on 10 December 1892 at Blato, Korcula, Dubrovnik-Neretva, Croatia as Marija Petkovic and died on 9 July 1966 in Rome, Italy of natural causes. Patronage – Congregation of the Daughters of Mercy of St Francis.
Marija Petkovic was born on 10 December 1892 on the island of Korcula in Blato, Croatia. She was the sixth of 11 children born to Antun Petkovic-Kovac and Maria Marinovic. Her father, a very wealthy man and most generous towards the poor, was an example to Marija and all his children.
After elementary school, Marija was enrolled in 1904 in Blato’s newly-opened municipal school run by the Servants of Charity, who had recently arrived from Italy. After successfully completing the three-year programme, she continued her studies at the School of Domestic Science, also directed by the Servants of Charity.
In 1905, when she was 13, Marija made her First Holy Communion. Before entering the church, she knelt down before her parents and asked their pardon for all her wrongdoings. Her father, moved to tears at this display of simplicity and faith, assured his daughter that she had never done anything to sadden her parents, but had always been obedient and loving. Her desire to be obedient, her love of prayer and solitude, her attention to the poor and abandoned, were all virtues that flowered in young Marija’s soul and nourished her desire to give herself completely to God.
In 1906 she became involved with the “Daughters of Mary” Association, and it was at this time that she revealed to Bishop Josip Marcelic that she wanted to enter the convent. This marked the beginning of Marija’s spiritual direction under the Bishop’s care. On 21 November 1906, she made a private vow of chastity to the Lord, saying: “I choose You alone as my spouse, I will love only You.” Marija renewed this vow every day.
From 1909 to 1919 Marija was President of the Daughters of Mary and its 300 members. She began as part of the group the “Good Shepherd” Association, composed of 20 young women who would visit the sick, prepare children for their First Communion and make spiritual reparation for sins.
In 1911 Marija’s father died, leaving Marija with the responsibility of helping her mother to take care of the family and provide for the education of the other children. The outbreak of World War I a few years later also left its mark on the Croatian people, claiming many young lives, destroying the surrounding farmland, spreading disease and perpetuating social injustices. This period proved to be very influential in Marija’s vocational discernment.
In 1915, under the guidance of Bishop Marcelic, she began the “Society of Catholic Mothers,” and in 1917, she assumed the responsibility of guiding the Third Order Franciscans with its 200 members. That same year, she began helping the Servants of Charity in the “soup kitchen” that they directed. In 1918, in front of the citizens of Blato, Marija made the solemn promise to the Bishop to remain in Blato to help and live with the poor.
Marija enters the Convent of the Servants of Charity:
On 25 March 1919, Marija and her friend, Marija Telenta, entered the convent of the Servants of Charity. Two months later, however, the superior died and the other Sisters, for political reasons, returned to Italy. Marija and her companion were left to take care of the Convent and direct the apostolate. Marija asked the two other Croatian Sisters who remained, if they wished to stay with her in Blato or to move to another Convent. Both wished to remain with Marija in Blato.
Bishop Marcelic took immediate watch over the Sisters and wrote to them to be above all “obedient,” and to “serve the children and the poor with care.” He wrote to Marija that she was to be “the superior and the last among the Sisters and if necessary, [she was to] go barefoot while the Sisters wore shoes, she hungry and the Sisters full, following the example of the Crucified Jesus.” Marija also requested from him the Rule of the Third Order Franciscans.
In the winter of 1919, Marija opened three institutions in Blato – a day-recovery centre, a child-care facility and an orphanage. She understood with increasing clarity and humility, that God was preparing her for still greater works.
The Congregation of the Daughters of Mercy is founded:
On 25 August 1920, in Prizba-Korcula, she wrote the first Constitutions of the new order. The Bishop had decided that the community would officially be inaugurated on 4 October, Feast of St Francis. On that day, Marija took the name “Marija of the Crucified Jesus” and became Foundress of the new Congregation of the Daughters of Mercy.
Notwithstanding the difficulties, including outside opposition against the Congregation, Mother Marija continued to put all of her trust in God, truly convinced that the new foundation was “His work.”She was known to say: “If I had money, I would trust in money but [without it] I trust only in God.”
From 1920 to 1952, Mother Marija was elected five times as the Superior General of the Daughters of Mercy. She travelled all over Croatia, Latin America and Italy, opening 46 communities while she was alive. The growing number of Sisters served in various social ministries, such as in nursing homes, hospitals, nursery schools, parish work and work in the seminaries.
Mother Marija died on 9 July 1956, after three years of partial paralysis caused by illness. In her spiritual testament, she left to her daughters a last recommendation: “Love infinitely the most sweet Lord Jesus Christ, do everything for Him alone and spend your life in works of mercy and of love.” … Vatican.va
On his third pastoral visit to Croatia, St Marija was Beatified by Pope John Paul II on 6 June 2003 in Dubrovnik, she was the first Blessed of Croatian birth.
The Congregation of the Daughters of Mercy of Saint Francis with the Generalate in Rome, now has branches in Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Slovenia, Romania, Italy, Germany, in Argentina , Chile, Paraguay and Peru and in Canada.
Virgen del Rosario / Our Lady of the Rosary (Chiquinquirá, Boyacá, Colombia) (1586) – 9 July, 26 December:
In the mid-16th century the Spanish painter Alonso de Narvaez created a portrait of the Virgin of the Rosary. He painted in pigments from the soil, herbs and flowers of the region of modern Colombia and his canvas was a rough 44 inch x 49 inch cloth woven by local Indians. The image of Mary is about a meter high. She has a small, sweet smile, both her face and the Divine Child’s are light coloured and she looks like she’s about to take a step. She wears a white toque, a rose-coloured robe and a sky blue cape. A Rosary hangs from the little finger of her left hand and she holds a sceptre in her right. She holds the Christ Child cradled in her left arm and looks toward Him. Christ has a little bird tied to His thumb and a small Rosary hangs from His left hand. To either side of Mary stand Saint Anthony of Padua and Saint Andrew the Apostle, the personal Patrons of the colonist, Don Antonio de Santana and Monk, Andrés Jadraque, who commissioned the work.
In 1562 the portrait was placed in a rustic Chapel. It was exposed to the air, the roof leaked and soon the damage caused by the humidity and sun completely obscured the image. In 1577 the damaged painting was moved to Chiquinquirá, Colombia and stored in an unused room. In 1585 Maria Ramos, a pious woman from Seville, cleaned up the little Chapel and hung the faded canvas in it. Though the image was in terrible shape, she loved to sit and contemplate it.
On Friday 26 December 1586 the faded, damaged image was suddenly restored. It’s colours were bright, the canvas cleaner, the image clear and seemingly brand new. The healing of the image continued as small holes and tears in the canvas miraculously self-sealed. It still has traces of its former damage and the figures seem brighter and clearer from a distance than up close. For 300 years the painting hung unprotected and thousands of objects were touched against the frail cotton cloth by pilgrims. This rough treatment should have destroyed it but it healed and survives. In 1829, Pope Pius VII declared Our Lady of Chiquinquirá Patroness of Colombia and granted a special liturgy. In 1897 a thick glass plate was placed over it to shield the painting from the weather and the excess zeal of the faithful. The image was canonically crowned in 1919 and in 1927 her sanctuary declared a Basilica.
Patronages – Colombia (1829), Venezuelan National Guard.
St Augustine Zhao Rong, Priest and Martyr (Died + 1815) and his 119 companions or Martyrs of China (Died 1648–1930, Qing dynasty and Republic of China) (Optional Memorial): 25 priests, friars, nuns, seminarians and lay people. The 87 Chinese Catholics and 33 Western missionaries, from the mid-17th century to 1930, were martyred because of their ministry and, in some cases, for their refusal to apostatise.
Many died in the Boxer Rebellion, in which xenophobic peasants slaughtered 30,000 Chinese converts to Christianity along with missionaries and other foreigners.
Canonised on 1 October 2000 by Pope John Paul II in Rome. Full story here:
St Agrippinus of Autun
St Alexander of Egypt
St Audax of Thora
St Brictius of Martola
St Copra of Egypt
St Cyril of Gortyna
Bl Dionysius the Rhetorician
St Everild of Everingham
St Faustina of Rome
St Felician of Sicily
Bl Fidelis Chojnacki
St Floriana of Rome
St Hérombert of Minden
Bl Jane Scopelli
St Joachim Ho
Bl Luigi Caburlotto
Bl Marguerite-Marie-Anne de Rocher
Bl Marie-Anne-Madeleine de Guilhermier Blessed Marija of Jesus Crucified Petković CRM (1892-1966)
St Patermutius of Egypt
St Paulina do Coração Agonizante de Jesus St Veronica/Ursula Giuliani OSC Cap. (1660-1727) Biography:
Four Holy Polish Brothers – 4 saints: Four brothers who became hermits, Benedictine monks and saints – Andrew, Barnabas, Benedict and Justus. They were born in Poland and died in 1008 of natural causes.
Martyrs of Gorkum – 19 saints: Nineteen martyrs killed by Calvinists for loyalty to the Pope and for their belief in the Real Presence in the Eucharist. They are –
• Adrianus van Hilvarenbeek • Andreas Wouters • Antonius van Hoornaar • Antonius van Weert • Cornelius van Wijk • Francisus de Roye • Godfried van Duynen • Godfried van Melveren • Hieronymus van Weert • Jacobus Lacops • Joannes Lenaerts • John of Cologne • Leonardus van Veghel • Nicasius Janssen van Heeze • Nicolaas Pieck • Nicolaas Poppel • Petrus van Assche • Theodorus van der Eem • Willehad van Deem •
They werehanged on 9 July 1572 in Brielle, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands.
Beatified on 24 November 1675 by Pope Clement X and Canonised on 29 June 1867 by Pope Pius IX.
Martyrs of Orange – 32 beati: 32 nuns from several orders who spent up to 18 months in prison and were finally executed for refusing to renounce Christianity during the persecutions of the French Revolution.
• Anne Cartier • Anne-Andrée Minutte • Dorothée-Madeleine-Julie de Justamond • élisabeth Verchière • élisabeth-Thérèse de Consolin • Jeanne-Marie de Romillon • Madeleine-Françoise de Justamond • Madeleine-Thérèse Talieu • Marguerite-Eléonore de Justamond • Marguerite-Marie-Anne de Rocher • Marguerite-Rose de Gordon • Marguerite-Thérèse Charensol • Marie Cluse • Marie-Anastasie de Roquard • Marie-Anne Béguin-Royal • Marie-Anne Depeyre • Marie-Anne Doux • Marie-Anne Lambert • Marie-Anne-Madeleine de Guilhermier • Marie-Claire du Bac • Marie-Clotilde Blanc • Marie-Elisabeth Pélissier • Marie-Gabrielle-Françoise-Suzanne de Gaillard de Lavaldène • Marie-Gertrude de Ripert d’Alauzier • Marie-Marguerite Bonnet • Marie-Marguerite de Barbégie d’Albrède • Marie-Rose Laye • Rosalie-Clotilde Bes • Suzanne-Agathe Deloye • Sylvie-Agnès de Romillon • Thérèse-Henriette Faurie
They were guillotined between 6 July and 26 July 1794 at Orange, Vaucluse, France.
Beatified on 10 May 1925 by Pope Pius XI.
Martyrs of the Baths – 10,204 saints: A group of Christians enslaved by Diocletian to build the gigantic baths in imperial Rome, Italy. The end of their labours coincided with the beginning of the great persecutions of Diocletian and they were all executed. Ancient records indicated there were 10,204 of them; Zeno of Rome is the only one whose name has come down to us and we know nothing else about any of their individual lives.