Thought for the Day – 25 August – Pride is Robbery!

Thought for the Day – 25 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Pride is Robbery!

“When we are proud, we steal from God!
Everything which we are and have, both in the natural and supernatural order, is a gift from God.
Therefore, when we claim the credit for ourselves, we take from Him that which really belongs to Him.
“What hast thou that thou hast not received.” asks St Paul. “And if thou has received it, why do thou boast as if thou had not received it?” (1 Cor 4:7).

Pride is a very grave sin, therefore.
According to Sacred Scripture, “pride is the reservoir of sin, a source which runs over with vice” (Ecclus 10:15).
“The beginnong of pride,” says the same Book of Ecclsiasticus, “is man’s stubbornness in withdrawing his heart from his Maker” (10:14).
It is worth meditating on these words, for because of this sin “God sends unheard-of afflictions and brings men to utter ruin” (Ecclus 10:15).
As St Augustine points out, the first sin was one of pride and it changed an angel into a demon. (In Ps 18:15).

When we reflect on the matter, it becomes quite clear, that pride is the basis of every sin (Ibid).
When man disobeys the law of God, he prefers sin to God.
Sin, therefore, is always an act of rebellion against God.
It is as if we were to say to Him: “I prefer to obey my own caprice, rather than to obey Your will.”
In this sense, it is true to state, that every sin is founded on pride and involves a turning away from God.
But, when we turn away from our Creator and Redeemer, where are we to go?
“Lord,” let us say with St Peter, “to whom shall we go? Thou has the words of everlasting life …” (Jn 6:69).”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci


Quote/s of the Day – 25 August – St Louis IX and St Joseph Calasanz

Quote/s of the Day – 25 August – The Memorials of St Louis IX (1214-1270) King of France and St Joseph Calasanz (1557-1648) Founder

“Dear son, have a tender pitiful heart for the poor
and for all those whom you believe to be
in misery of heart or body and,
according to your ability, comfort
and aid them with some alms.”

“In order to avoid discord,
never contradict anyone
except in case of sin
or some danger to a neighbour
and, when necessary to contradict others,
do it with tact and not with temper.”

“In prosperity,
give thanks to God with humility and fear,
lest by pride,
you abuse God’s benefits
and so offend him.”

St Louis IX King of France (1214-1270)

“All who undertake to teach
must be endowed with deep love,
the greatest patience and,
most of all, profound humility.
They must perform their work with earnest zeal.
Then, through their humble prayers,
the Lord will find them worthy
to become fellow workers
with Him in the cause of truth.”

“As Scripture says,
“Those who instruct many in justice
will shine as stars for all eternity.”
They will attain this more easily,
if they make a covenant of perpetual obedience
and strive to cling to Christ
and please Him alone
because, in His words,
“What you did to one of the least
of my brethren, you did to me.”

“For if from childhood,
a child is diligently imbued
with piety and literacy,
a happy course of life
can be foreseen.”

St Joseph Calasanz (1557-1648)
Patron of children
and of Catholic schools,
Pray for Us!


One Minute Reflection – 25 August – “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. ” Matthew 23:23

One Minute Reflection – 25 August – Tuesday of the Twenty First week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 2 Thessalonians 2: 1-3a14-17Psalms 96: 1011-12,13Matthew 23: 23-26 – The Memorials of Sts Louis IX, (1214-1270) King of France, St Thomas de Cantelupe of Hereford (c 1218–1282) and St Joseph Calasanz (1557-1648) Founder

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You pay tithes of mint and dill and cumin and have neglected the weightier things of the law – judgement and mercy and fidelity. [But] these you should have done, without neglecting the others…” … Matthew 23:23

REFLECTION – “Not only among the Jews but among ourselves as well, we find people sinning in these ways. They are swallowing camels. People of this type frequently show off their religion even in the smallest of things. They are rightly called hypocrites for wanting to exploit their religiosity before men but being unwilling to undertake that very faith, which God Himself has justified.
Therefore, the imitators of the scribes and Pharisees must be dislodged and sent away from us, lest a woe, touches us, in the same way it touches them.
The scribes could be described as those who valued nothing found in the Scriptures, except its plain sense interpreted legalistically.
Meanwhile, they condemn those who look into the very depths of God Himself.
Mint and dill and cumin are only spices for food but are not themselves, substantial food. What substantive food would mean in conversion, would be that which is necessary for the justification of our souls—faith and love—unlike these legalisms, which are more like condiments and flavourings. It is as if, a meal might be thought to consist, more of condiments and flavourings than the food itself.
The seriousness of judgement is neglected, while great attention is given to minor matters.
Spiritual exercises which in and of themselves are hardly justice, are spoken of as justice and compassion and faith.
It is lacking in justice to treat these small parts as the whole.
When we do not offer to God the observance of all that is necessary for worship, we fail altogether.” … Origen (c 185-253) – Priest, Theologian, Father – Commentary on Matthew, 19

PRAYER – Dear Lord, help me to teach others about You by my example as well as my words. Grant that I may spread Your truth and Your light wherever I go. St Louis and St Joseph of Calasanz, you are examples of the way to true faith and love, assist us by your prayers, in living the true way of life in this world to attain our true home in heaven. We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever, amen.


Our Morning Offering – 25 August – O God, We Love You

Our Morning Offering – 25 August – Tuesday of the Twenty First week in Ordinary Time and The Memorial of St Louis IX (1214-1270) King of France

O God, We Love You

Prayer inspired by St Louis’ Last Instructions
to his Eldest Son, Philip
(Perhaps Philip prayed thus)

O God, we love You.
We want to do nothing to displease You.
If we have troubles, let us thank You.
If we don’t, we also humbly thank You.
Let us look for ways to grow closer to You,
whether in Confession, prayer, or at Mass.
Let us open our hearts to afflicted people
and do what we can to comfort them.
Let us look for ways to improve our society.
Thank You for friends who help us bear
our burdens and help us grow in holiness.
Let us turn away from gossip or swearing.
Let us always do what is right for those we serve
and promote peace among our neighbours.
Let us be quick to defend our Faith.
O Holy Trinity, all You holy saints,
please defend us from all evils.
Please give us grace to do Your will always,
so that You are honoured
and so we may be with You forever.

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 25 August – Saint Thomas de Cantelupe of Hereford (c 1218–1282) Bishop of Hereford, Lord Chancellor of England

Saint of the Day – 25 August – Saint Thomas de Cantelupe of Hereford (c 1218–1282) Bishop of Hereford, Lord Chancellor of England, a gentle but firm Administrator, Apostle of the poor, the needy and the humble – born in c 1218 in Hambledon, Buckinghamshire, England and died on 25 August 1282 in Ferento, Montefiascone, Italy of natural causes  (aged 63–64). This year on 17 April 2020, the 700th Anniversary celebrations were held in Hereford Cathedral for the Canonisation of Saint Thomas which took place on 17 April 1320 by Pope John XXII. His personal austerity (Thomas habitually wore a hair shirt), his zeal as a reforming Bishop and an intrepid defender of the rights of his Church, together with over 400 claimed miracles reported at his tomb, were causes for his Canonisation. He is also known as de Cantelow, de Cantelou, de Canteloupe, de Cantilupo. Patronages – Hereford, Hereford Cathedral, Diocese of Herefore, Hambledon.

St Thomas de Cantelupe was the penultimate figure of English history to have achieved official, papal, Canonisation before the Reformation (the last medieval recipient of this honour was Osmund, bishop of Salisbury, Canonised in 1456).. He was of noble Anglo-Norman descent, the son of William, 2nd Baron Cantelupe and Seneschal to King John and his wife Millicent de Gournay, widow of Amaury de Montfort, Count of Evreux. His father’s brother, Walter, was Bishop of Worcester and, by him, young Thomas was educated. The future Bishop and Saint also studied in Oxford and Paris and, before he had passed middle age, he was known, everywhere, as one of the most remarkable band of Scholar-Ecclesiastics who did so much to redeem the name of the Church in the 13th century. He was Ordained by his uncle in 1245.

Thomas became Chancellor of Oxford University in 1262 and earned golden opinions by the firm, yet tactful, control which he succeeded in establishing over the horde of unruly students. In 1265, Earl Simon de Montfort appointed him Chancellor of the Realm but this position he naturally lost at the fall of the ‘Righteous Earl.’ The best testimony to the remarkable moral ascendancy which he had achieved, is furnished by the fact that even King Henry III seems to have felt no enmity towards him.

He thought, however, to travel abroad for a time, during which he lectured on theology. With the accession of Edward I, the evil days were past and, during the last ten years of his life, Thomas was counted among the most trusted advisers of the great King. When, in 1275, the Chapter of Hereford Cathedral elected him Bishop of their Diocese, he, at first, declined the honour and was, only with the utmost difficulty, induced to accept it.

As this appointment took him far from London and the Royal Court, Thomas requested that Edward I “commit to him, until the heirs of Henry d’Earley, tenant in chief, come of age, the manor of Earley [Whiteknights] near Reading” and it was here that he resided whenever attending the King.

It may well be, that the kindly gentle scholar hated the prospect of life at Hereford among the rough and despotic barons of the Welsh Marches, the chief of whom, was the hot-tempered, grasping and unstable Gilbert de Clare, the ‘Red’ Earl of Gloucester. But, in point of fact, Thomas proved a very firm opponent of feudal arrogance and Gilbert the Red, found himself thoroughly worsted in an attempt to filch the Bishop’s hunting rights in the Malvern Forest. Lord Clifford, an amiable person who amused himself with cattle rustling, fire raising and maltreating the Bishop’s tenants, was even forced to do penance barefoot through the streets of Hereford to the high altar of the Cathedral, where Bishop Cantelupe himself castigated him with a rod. It is no wonder that a man who thus stood up for the helpless, was beloved by his flock and their affection was not diminished by his hospitality and boundless charity.

In one respect, it might seem that this really Christian man fell short of his ideals, for he was an ecclesiastical pluralist of the first order – being, at once, Canon and Cantor of York, Archdeacon and Canon of Lichfield & Coventry, Canon of London, Canon of Hereford, Archdeacon of Stafford and Rector of various rural parishes, including Sherborne St John in Hampshire. However, it is likely that, as in the case of Bishop Walter de Merton who held the great seal immediately before Cantelupe, the King found such preferments to be an expedient means of paying him. And, despite the usual practice being to take each salary and ignore one’s parochial responsibilities, Thomas is notable for having made sure that good curates always took his place, while still making visits himself whenever he could.

At the close of his life, Bishop Cantelupe in defending the rights of his church against lay aggressors, Thomas successfully challenged the authority of Archbishop Pecham of Canterbury over metropolitan jurisdiction within the Diocese of Hereford. At the height of his anger, Pecham solemnly excommunicated the refractory Bishop of Hereford who, at once, proceeded to Rome to lay his case before Pope Martin IV.  There is reason to believe, however, that, as an excommunicated person, he could obtain from the Pope nothing more than “the promise of a quick despatch and removal of delays” and that this broken man only received absolution in the hour of his death, which occurred near Orvieto on 25 August 1282, – while travelling to the Papal Court at Orvieto to hear judgement on his case.

St Thomas de Cantelupe Appeals to Pope Martin IV

Richard Swinfield, his successor in the see of Hereford, who had accompanied Bishop Cantelupe to Italy as his chaplain, proceeded, probably at the prelate’s own request, to separate the flesh of his body from the bones by boiling. The flesh was interred in the Church of Santo Severo, near Orvieto; the heart was conveyed to the Monastic Church of Ashridge in Buckinghamshire, founded by Edmund, Earl of Cornwall and the bones were brought to his own Cathedral at Hereford. As they were being conveyed into the church, says the compiler of the Bishop’s ‘Life and Miracles,’ Gilbert Earl of Gloucester approached and touched the casket which contained them, whereupon they ‘bled-a-fresh.’ The Earl was struck with compunction and made full restitution to the Church of all the lands which Bishop Cantelupe had rightly claimed from him.

St Thomas’ Death with King Edward I

Swinfield, who had been the constant companion of Bishop Thomas and many of the contemporary chroniclers, bear witness to the purity and excellence of the Bishop’s life and his tomb soon became distinguished by miracles. The first of these, according to the annalist of Worcester, occurred in April 1287. At the time, apparently, of the removal of his remains from the tomb in the Lady Chapel, to the shrine which had been provided for them in the north transept. The number of miracles increased daily and, in 1289, Bishop Swinfield, who had brought Thomas’ bones from Italy, wrote to the Pope requesting his Canonisation.

At the Reformation all the Shrines in Hereford Cathedral were swept away. St Thomas’ Shrine was wholly demolished but the faithful managed to rescue some of his relics, including his head. These bones were preserved until the seventeenth century by local Catholics but were dispersed thereafter, some of St Thomas’ relics are still honoured in England at Belmont Abbey in Herefordshire, Stonyhurst College in Lancashire and since 1881, St Thomas’ skull has be preserved at Downside Abbey.

Many difficulties, however, were interposed and in spite of numerous letters from King Edward I and his son, Edward II, it was not until May 1320 that the bull of Canonisation was issued by Pope John XXII. It is possible that the excommunication of Cantelupe and his connection with the Knights Templars, of which Order he was Provincial Grand Master in England, were among the causes of the delay. The Templars were arrested throughout England in 1307; condemned in 1310 and, in 1312, the Order was finally dissolved in the Council of Vienne.

A book entitled ‘The Life and Miracles of Saint Thomas Cantelupe,‘ said to be compiled from evidences at Rome, collected before his Canonisation, was published at Ghent in 1674. “No fewer than four hundred and twenty-five miracles are registered, reported to be wrought at his tomb. . . . Yea, it is recorded in his legend, that by his prayers were raised from death to life, three-score several persons, one-and-twenty lepers healed and three-and-twenty blind and dumb men to have received their sight and speech.”

In the 2004 edition of the Roman Martyrology, St Thomas Cantelupe is listed under 25 August with the Latin name Thomae Cantelupe. He is mentioned as follows: ‘At Mount Faliscorum in Tuscany passed Saint Thomas Cantelupe, Bishop of Hereford in England, famous for his learning, who, though severe in his treatment of himself, was generous to the poor.’ 

The arms of Cantelupe-Gules, three leopards’ heads, with a fleur-de-lis-or issuing from the mouth, – have since his Canonisation been assumed as those of the see of Hereford.

Prayer to St Thomas

Hail Thomas,
good shepherd,
patron of the flock of Christ
and teacher of the Church,
lend your help to the sick,
I beg you,
and confer on devout minds
by your intercession,
the light of grace,
through Christ our Lord.

Hereford Cathedral
St Thomas’ Shrine at Hereford Cathedral
Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 25 August

St Joseph Calasanz Sch.P. (1557-1648) (Optional Memorial)

St Louis IX (1214-1270) King of France (Optional Memorial)
All about this wonderful Saint here:

St Alessandro Dordi
Bl Andrea Bordino
St Andreas Gim Gwang-Ok
St Aredius of Limoges
St Ebbe the Elder
Bl Eduard Cabanach Majem
St Eusbius of Rome
Bl Fermí Martorell Vies
Bl Francesc Llach Candell
St Genesius of Arles
St Genesius of Brescello
St Genesius of Rome
St Gennadius of Constantinople
St Geruntius of Italica
St Gregory of Utrecht
St Gurloes of Sainte Croix
St Hermes of Eretum
St Hunegund of Homblieres
St Julian of Syria
St Julius of Eretum
Bl Ludovicus Baba
Bl Ludovicus Sasada
Bl Luis Cabrera Sotelo
St Maginus
St Marcian of Saignon
St Maria Micaela of the Blessed Sacrament (1809-1865)
Her Life:
Bl María del Tránsito de Jesús Sacramentado
Bl Maria Troncatti
St Menas of Constantinople
Bl Miguel Carvalho
St Nemesius of Rome
St Patricia of Naples
Bl Paul-Jean Charles
Bl Pedro de Calidis
St Peregrinus of Rome
St Petrus Gim Jeong-Duk
St Pontian of Rome
St Severus of Agde
St Thomas de Cantelupe of Hereford (c 1218–1282) Bishop, Lord Chancellor of England

St Vincent of Rome

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War:
• Blessed Antoni Prenafeta Soler
• Blessed Antoni Vilamassana Carulla
• Blessed Enric Salvá Ministral
• Blessed Florencio Alonso Ruiz
• Blessed Fortunato Merino Vegas
• Blessed Josep Maria Panadés Terré
• Blessed Juan Pérez Rodríguez
• Blessed Luis Gutiérrez Calvo
• Blessed Luis Urbano Lanaspa
• Blessed Manuel Fernández Ferro
• Blessed Miguel Grau Antolí
• Blessed Pere Farrés Valls
• Blessed Ramon Cabanach Majem
• Blessed Salvi Tolosa Alsina
• Blessed Vicente álvarez Cienfuegos