Thought for the Day – 26 July – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
Adoration of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament
“Anyone who loves Jesus sincerely in the Sacrament of the Eucharist, must experience a pang of regret whenever he enters a Church and sees, that the spaces surrounding the Tabernacle are empty.
Here and there, a few people may be praying before statues of Our Lady and of the Saints but, too often, there is nobody to worship Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.
Only the dim light of the Tabernacle lamp seems to be attempting to compensate in some small way, for the ingratitude of men.
Yet, here is no mere image but the real living Jesus Who loves us and longs to shower His gifts upon us.
We are poor and He is rich; we are weak and He is strong.
We are sinners and He wishes us to kneel repentant at His feet so that He may forgive us.
We are bent beneath the weight of our cross, which seems too heavy for us to bear and He desires to lighten it by His grace.
We are weary and worried and unable to find a friend who will fully understand and comfort us.
But, if we go to Jesus, we shall find a Friend and a Comforter. “Come to me,” He says to us, “all you who labour and are burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden light” (Mt 11:28-30).
Let us kneel before Jesus in the Tabernacle and confide to Him, our worries, sorrows and desires.
He will understand and enlighten us; He will strengthen our wavering resolution and inspire in our hearts, the divine love, which makes it easy to sacrifice ourselves for His sake.”
Quote/s of the Day – 5 August – “Month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary” – Wednesday of the Eighteenth Week in Ordinary Time and the Memorial of the Dedication of Mary Major
“Mary was placed by God in the centre of history and we can say, that everything was made through her and with her and in her.”
St Bernard (1090-1153)
Doctor of the Church
“Mary is the divine Page on which God the Father wrote the Word of God, His Son. Let us draw near to her and read her!”
St Albert the Great (1200-1280)
Doctor of the Church
“The single richest treasure in the Vatican is the Rosary.”
Bl Pope Pius IX (1792-1878)
“All to Jesus through Mary, all to Mary for Jesus.”
St Marcellin Champagnat (1789-1840)
“No matter how enormous our sins may be, no matter how irresistible our carnal instincts may seem, no matter how hopelessly we may have plunged into the depths of evil, it is enough for us to raise our eyes in confidence towards Mary. … Like a merciful Mother, she will obtain for us from God, forgiveness and the strength to return to the path of penitence and of peace. … Let us turn to her with trust and humility and she will certainly assist us.”
One Minute Reflection – 5 August – “Month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary” – Wednesday of the Eighteenth Week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Jeremiah 31:1-7, Responsorial psalm Jeremiah 31:10-13, Matthew 15:21-28 and the Memorial of the Dedication of Mary Major
And Jesus went away from there and withdrew to the district of Tyre and Sidon. … Matthew 15:21
REFLECTION – “Jesus came out of Israel …: “Jesus went from that place and withdrew to the region of Tyre” (Mt 15:21), a name which means “gathering of the nations.”This was so, that, from among the people of that territory, those who believed might be saved when they came out from it.
Now, pay attention to these words: “And behold, a Canaanite woman, coming out of that district, called out saying: ‘Have pity on me, Lord, son of David! My daughter is tormented by a demon’” (v. 22). Now in my opinion, if she had not withdrawn from that territory she would not have been able to call out to Jesus with cries that sprang from “great faith,” as the Lord Himself testified (v. 28).
It is “according to the measure of our faith” (Rm 12:6) that we come out from the territory of the pagan nations … We must certainly believe that each one of us, so long as he is a sinner, finds himself in the region of Tyre or Sidon, of Pharaoh or Egypt, or of some other land alien to God’s inheritance. But when sinners abandon their wrongdoing, turning back to the good, they withdraw from those regions where sin dwells and hasten to the regions that are the portion of God …
Notice, too, the sort of journey Jesus makes to meet the Canaanite woman, for he seems to be going towards the region of Tyre and Sidon …. The righteous are directed towards the kingdom of heaven and elevation into the Kingdom of God but sinners are directed towards the outcome of their evildoing …
The Canaanite woman, by leaving these territories, also left that tendency towards decadence, when she cried out and said: “Have pity on me, Lord, Son of David” … All the miracles accomplished by Jesus, as the evangelists have told them, took place, then, so that those who saw them might have faith. But those events are the symbol of what is always been brought about by Jesus’ power, for there is no age when what was written is not being realised in exactly the same way.” … Origen (c 185-253) Priest and Theologian, Church Father – Commentary on Saint Matthew’s gospel, Book XI, ch. 16
PRAYER – Forgive the sins of Your people Lord and since of ourselves, we are unable to do what pleases You, lead us on the way of salvation in Your divine Son who lives in us and gives us life. May the prayers of Mary, His Mother help us to constantly meditate on His eternal sustenance. He is our food, our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, God forever and ever, amen.
Saint of the Day – 5 August – Blessed Salvio Huix-Miralpeix CO Cong. Orat. (1877–1936) Bishop of Ibiza and later of Lleida, Catalonia and Martyr, Religious of the Congration of the Oratory of St Philip Neri, Professor of Theology, Apostle of the sick – born on 22 December 1877 in Santa Margarida de Vallors, Girona, Spain and died by being shot in the head on the morning of 5 August 1936 in a cemetery in Lleida, Spain.
Salvio Huix was born on 22 December 1877. His family, were fairly well-off and were more than ordinarily devout Catholics — daily Mass, Rosary, Visits to the Blessed Sacrament were built into the life of the family. There were always Priests visiting the home and there were quite a few Priests in the family, so it came as no real surprise, when young Salvio announced his intention to offer himself as a candidate for the Priesthood, leaving home for the local minor seminary at the age of 10. There, he excelled at his studies, not on account of any unusual intelligence but because of his tremendous application to his work. It was said by those who knew him that he would always do whatever was needed as well as he possibly could and, that he was an immensely practical sort of person, not given to day dreams or idling. The virtues noticed by his fellow students were to be those admired by his fellow Oratorians – his obedience, his joy and warm heartedness, his natural interest in others, his capacity for hard work and real leadership, while at the same time, shying away from any publicity. It must be said that this young man was also hot tempered and at times had difficulty in controlling his temper.
Salvio was Ordained Priest on 19th September 1903 and was sent to work as a country curate. He served in two rural Parishes but found there wasn’t work enough to absorb his energies; moreover, he wanted to be near people and to be active in the business of helping people become holy. It was this desire that lead him to enter the Oratory in Vich in 1907. He was then 30 years old.
What was life at the Oratory of Vich like? The fathers would rise each morning at 4:30am, except on Sunday and feast-days, when they would get up half an hour earlier. After an hour of mental prayer, they would go down to the Church to hear Confessions and after the last penitent was done, the fathers would say their Masses at one of the side-altars in the church. The afternoon was spent in the confessional, or working with one of the groups or sodalities which were attached to the church -Brothers of the Little Oratory, groups for young people etc. There were the sick to be visited and children to be catechised. Fr Huix became aware that there was nothing for young married men, who seemed to have no part in the life of the Church. Bl Salvio believed that a religion that attracted only women and children in large numbers was seriously deficient, so he started a confraternity for married men under the patronage of St Joseph. Both these men and the young ,he encouraged in the apostolate. He was anxious to get them working for the sick, not just by visiting them but by actually looking to their physical and material needs. He himself was unafraid to get his hands dirty and when he wasn’t busy in the Confessional or at the Seminary, where he was Professor of Mystical and Ascetical Theology, he was likely to be found tending the sick — washing them if needs be and changing their bed-linen.
In 1927, Fr Salvio, by now provost of the little community, was nominated Bishop of Ibiza. The island had been without a Bishop for 69 years and so his appointment was greeted with great joy. A photograph of his arrival shows the quay crowded with hundreds of cheering people. Even though his Episcopal Consecration (which took place 28 April that year) meant that Fr Huix would have to leave his Congregation, he remained very much a son of St Philip, even in the way he governed his Diocese. As Bishop he showed himself to be a very caring shepherd and very practical one too. Another photograph taken at a reception soon after his appointment as Bishop, shows him, his head inclined towards the person he is talking to, holding his hand, evidently interested in what he is saying. His clergy, he found, were extremely poor and so he organised a life insurance scheme which would guarantee them some security in their old age. He continued to encourage the laity in the social apostolate. He was very much a man for his people.
In 1931, Spain was declared a Republic and although the Spanish Bishops initially urged the faithful to co-operate with the Government, within a few weeks, things began to change and as the new order made itself felt. In Madrid and elsewhere, convents were pillaged and burned; the Jesuits were suppressed; the Archbishop of Toledo was expelled; all schools run by religious orders were closed. Cemeteries were secularised and Catholic burials were forbidden. All Crucifixes were ordered to be removed from the cemeteries. On Ibiza, men carried the great Crucifix from the cemetery to the Cathedral doors, where the Bishop himself shouldered the Crucifix and carried it to the sanctuary. Bl Salvio was unimpressed by the anti-religious laws and ideas and in his Lenten pastoral letter of 1932, he told his people that even though the dogs bark and the pigs grunt, the sun and the moon will continue to shine.
He remained Bishop of Ibiza for 8 years, when in 1935, he was translated to the more prestigious see of Lerida on the mainland. There he hoped to continue his pastoral programme but this was not to be, because within the year, the civil war broke out.
Between July 1936 and March 1937, there was an onslaught of violence against the Church, a few months in which thousands of people died. By the end of the war, it was reckoned that 6,832 priests and religious had been killed, 12 bishops and 283 religious sisters.
On 18 July there was a military uprising against the Republican government. Two days later, the city of Lerida was in the hands of republican forces, who burned the Cathedral and the Churches of the city, killing, in the course of several months, 80% of the Priests of the Diocese. The last photograph of Mgr Huix, taken in June of 1936, shows him flanked by the Priests he had just Ordained; within a month, all but one of those young men, together with their Bishop, were dead. One of his seminarians, aged about 15 was given a mock trial. The crowd shouted for his death and the ‘Judge’, so called, went through the motion of washing his hands, before condemning him to death. The boy was then beaten, stripped and nailed to a beam where he died.
On the night of the 21st July, after republicans had burned the Cathedral, they turned their attention to the Episcopal residence. Whilst they were beating down the doors, Huix, together with his Secretary, the porter and his daughter, confessed, consumed the Blessed Sacrament and escaped by the back door. He had, it seems, expected something of the sort to happen, since he kept a suitcase with a simple suit packed ready, just in case. At first, he took refuge in the house of the gardener but realising the danger to which he was exposing this man and his family, he gave himself up to the police. ‘I am the Bishop of Lerida,’ he said, ‘and I place myself under your protection.’ The police promptly handed him over to the republicans, who imprisoned him. Many of the leading people of the city were already in gaol, also a number of his clergy. All were struck by the Bishop’s cheerfulness and his continuing care for his flock. On St James’ feast, he was able to say Mass, using vessels that had been smuggled in to the prison. He administered Communion and heard Confessions.
Early in the morning (4:30am) on the 5th August, the feast of Our Lady of the Snows, the Bishop and 20 others were told that were going to be taken for trial at Barcelona. Once outside the city, the lorries stopped by the cemetery and the prisoners were instructed to get out. Realising they were about to be killed, the group all asked their Bishop for his blessing. This he gave, telling them, ‘Be brave, for within the hour we shall be reunited in the presence of the Lord.’He is said to have used a popular Catalan saying on reaching the end of a long journey: Ja soms a sants(We are saints). They then recited the Credo together and were made to dig their graves. One account tells that Mgr Huix was offered his life if he would abjure his faith. This he refused to do but asked one favour, that he might be the last to die. As each was killed, he blessed them. One of the militia men, objecting to this, shot him through the hand, he continued to bless with his left In a written testimony after the Martyrdom, the man who had administered the coup de grace to the dying, said how there was much blood and that the sinews of the Bishop’s arms were exposed through having been shot a number of times.
Blessed Salvio was not the only father of the Oratory to lose his life in the tragic events of the Civil War. Four fathers from Barcelona were murdered, five from Gracia and the Provost of Vich. May their blood and that of all the Martyrs, be the seed of a new spring in the life of the Church in his country and their intercession, the means of a true reconciliation and understanding. I have perhaps spoken at too great a length about Blessed Salvio , when it might well have sufficed to quote St Ambrose: ‘I have called him Martyr. I have said everything.’
Blessed Salvio was Beatified on 13 October 2013 by Pope Francis in Tarragona, Spain along with another 521 martyrs. His liturgical feast is kept today, 5 August.
Almighty and eternal God, who in your goodness bestowed on the Bishop and Martyr Salvio Huix, the gift of pastoral charity even to the point of shedding of his blood for Christ and His Church, bestow on us also, the grace to work faithfully in your vineyard and to experience his intercession in this life. Through Christ our Lord. Amen
Our Lady of Copacabana: A statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary standing four feet tall, made of plaster and maguey fibre and created by Francisco Tito Yupanqui. Except for the face and hands, it is covered in gold leaf, dressed like an Inca princess and has jewels on neck, hands and ears. There is no record of what the image looks like under the robes, the carved hair has been covered by a wig and the image never leaves the Basilica. On 21 February 1583 it was enthroned in an adobe church on the Peninsula of Copacabana, which juts into Lake Titicaca nearly 3 miles above sea level. In 1669 the Viceroy of Peru added a straw basket and baton to the statue, which she still holds today. The present shrine dates from 1805. The image was crowned during the reign of Pope Pius XI and it’s sanctuary was promoted to a Basilica in 1949. It has been the recipient of many expensive gifts over the years, most of which were looted by civil authorities in need of quick cash. Patronage – Bolivia, Bolivian navy.
St Abel of Rheims
St Aggai of Edessa
Bl Arnaldo Pons
St Cassian of Autun
St Casto of Teano
Bl Corrado of Laodicea
St Emidius of Ascoli Piceno
St Gormeal of Ardoilen
Bl James Gerius
St Margaret the Barefooted
St Memmius of Châlons-sur-Marne
St Nonna St Oswald of Northumbria (604-642) Martyr Biography: https://anastpaul.com/2019/08/05/saint-of-the-day-5-august-saint-oswald-of-northumbria-c-604-642-martyr/
St Paris of Teano
Bl Pierre-Michel Noël Blessed Salvio Huix-Miralpeix C.O. Cong Orat (1877–1936) Bishop and Martyr
St Theodoric of Cambrai-Arras
St Venantius of Viviers
Martyrs of Fuente la Higuera: A group of Augustinian priests and clerics who were martyred together in the Spanish Civil War. 5 August 1936 in Fuente la Higuera, Valencia, Spain. They were Beatified on 28 October 2007 by Pope Benedict XVI.
• Anastasio Díez García
• Ángel Pérez Santos
• Cipriano Polo García
• Emilio Camino Noval
• Felipe Barba Chamorro
• Gabino Olaso Zabala
• Luciano Ramos Villafruela
• Luis Blanco Álvarez
• Ubaldo Revilla Rodríguez
• Victor Gaitero González
Martyrs of the Salarian Way: Twenty-three Christians who were martyred together in the persecutions of Diocletian.
303 on the Salarian Way in Rome, Italy.
Martyred in the Spanish Civil War:
Bl Eduardo González Santo Domingo
Bl Jaume Codina Casellas
Bl José Trallero Lou
Bl Lluís Domingo Mariné
Bl Manuel Moreno Martínez
Bl Maximino Fernández Marinas
Bl Victor García Ceballos