Thought for the Day – 27 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Sons of God
“In the beginning of his Gospel, St John speaks of the eternal nature of the Son of God, the Word through Whom all things were created and Who became man to enlighten and redeem the world, which was wallowing in ignorance and sin. Unfortunately, he adds, instead of welcoming Him, the world rejected Him but, he goes on to say that “to as many as received him, he gave the power of becoming the sons of God” (Cf. John 1:1-12). These words are a summary of the history of Christianity and, indeed, of the human race, for Jesus Christ was to be a “sign that shall be contradicted” (Lk 2:34). On our side, there have always been the children of the world, those who ignore or openly combat Christ; on the other, the children of God,the thousands who acknowledge Christ as the Hope of salvation and the Light of the world and adore and love Him as God.
To which side do I belong? Perhaps I am convinced that I have never attacked or rejected Christ. But, in effect, I did so every time I committed a deliberate sin, for I put my own caprice before His will. God’s grace in me was weakened by venial sin, or extinguished altogether by mortal sin. As a result, I cased to be a child of God and became a child of Satan. In losing Jesus, I forfeited all real happiness in this world AND in the next!”
Quotes of the Day – 28 August – The Memorial of St Augustine of Hippo (354-430) – Father and Doctor of Grace
“To fall in love with God, is the greatest romance; to seek Him, the greatest adventure; to find Him, the greatest human achievement.”
“You ask what you might offer to God? Offer yourself! What does God expect from you, except yourself?”
“He bought brothers for Himself by His blood, He made them welcome by being rejected, He ransomed them by being sold, He honoured them by being dishonoured, He gave them life by being put to death. So, brethren, rejoice in the Lord, not in the world. That is, rejoice in the truth, not in wickedness, rejoice in the hope of eternity, not in the fading flower of vanity. That is the way to rejoice. Wherever you are on earth, however long you remain on earth, the Lord is near, do not be anxious about anything!”
“God provides the wind but man must raise the sails.”
“A man may lose the good things of this life against his will but, if he loses the eternal blessings, he does so with his own consent.”
“Do you wish to RISE? Begin by DESCENDING. You plan a tower that will pierce the CLOUDS? Lay first the foundation of HUMILITY.”
“If we live good lives, the times are also good. As we are, such are the times.”
“He who calls us, came here below, to give us the means of getting there. He chose the wood that would enable us to cross the sea – indeed, no-one can cross the ocean of this world, who is not borne by the Cross of Christ. Even the blind can cling to this Cross. If you can’t see where you are going very well, don’t let go of it, it will guide you by itself. ”
“We pray then to Him, through Him, in Him and we speak along with Him and He along with us. ”
“The foolish ones, when taking their lamps, brought no oil with them but the wise brought flasks of oil with their lamps.” … Matthew 25:3-4
REFLECTION – “It is some great thing, some exceedingly great thing, that this oil signifies. Do you think it might be charity? If we try out this hypothesis, we hazard no precipitate judgement. I will tell you why charity seems to be signified by the oil. The apostle says, “I will show you a still more excellent way.” “If I speak with the tongue of mortals and of angels but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.” This is charity. It is “that way above the rest,” which is, with good reason, signified by the oil. For oil swims above all liquids. Pour in water and pour in oil upon it, the oil will swim above. If you keep the usual order, it will be uppermost, if you change the order, it will be uppermost. “Charity never fails.” … St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor – Sermon 93
PRAYER – Renew in Your Church, we pray , O Lord, the spirit with which You endowed Your Bishop Saint Augustine, that, filled with the same spirit, we may thirst for You, the sole fount of true wisdom and seek You, the author of heavenly love. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. St Augustine, pray for us! Amen
Our Morning Offering – August 28 – Friday of the Twenty-first week in Ordinary Time and the Memorial of St Augustine (354-430) – Doctor of Grace
Only You! By St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor of Grace
Lord Jesus, let me know myself and know You and desire nothing save only You. Let me hate myself and love You. Let me do everything for the sake of You. Let me humble myself and exalt You. Let me think of nothing except You. Let me die to myself and live in You. Let me accept whatever happens as from You. Let me banish self and follow You and ever desire to follow You. Let me fly from myself and take refuge in You, That I may deserve to be defended by You. Let me fear for myself. Let me fear You and let me be among those who are chosen by You. Let me distrust myself and put my trust in You. Let me be willing to obey for the sake of You. Let me cling to nothing save only to You, And let me be poor because of You. Look upon me, that I may love You. Call me, that I may see You and forever enjoy You. Amen
Today, 28 August, we celebrate the Memorial of Saint Augustine, one of the great founders of Monasticism in the Western Church, Bishop, Theologian, Preacher, Writer and Doctor of the Church. None of these titles, though accurate, would please him, however, as much as the simple one he used to describe himself: ‘Servant of God.’ For, whatever we achieve in life, whatever gifts and talents we have been given, are of little value unless they lead us, as they did Augustine, to know, love and serve God ever more deeply.
“Augustine, numbered among the four great Doctors of the Western Church, possessed one of the most penetrating minds of ancient Christendom. He was the most important Platonist of patristic times, the Church’s most influential theologian, especially with regard to clarifying the dogmas of the Trinity, grace and the Church. He was a great speaker, a prolific writer, a saint with an inexhaustible spirituality.
His Confessions, a book appreciated in every age, describes a notable portion of his life (until 400), his errors, his battles, his profound religious observations. Famous too is his work The City of God, a worthy memorial to his genius, a philosophy of history. Most edifying are his homilies, especially those on the psalms and on the Gospel of St John.
Augustine’s Episcopal life was filled with mighty battles against heretics, over all of whom he triumphed. His most illustrious victory was that over Pelagius, who denied the necessity of grace; from this encounter he earned the surname “Doctor of grace.”
As an emblem Christian art accords him a burning heart to symbolise the ardent love of God which permeates all his writings. He is the founder of canonical life in common, therefore, Augustinian Monks and the Hermits of St Augustine honour him as their spiritual father.” … Excerpted from The Church’s Year of Grace, Pius Parsch
St Jerome wrote to Augustine in 418: “You are known throughout the world; Catholics honour and esteem you as the one who has established anew the ancient Faith.”
If I wanted to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ
An excerpt from his Sermon 47, De ovibus (On Sheep)
“This is our glory – the witness of our conscience. There are men who rashly judge, who slander, whisper and murmur, who are eager to suspect what they do not see and eager to spread abroad things they have not even a suspicion of. Against men of this sort, what defence is there, save the witness of our own conscience?
My brothers, we do not seek, nor should we seek, our own glory even among those whose approval we desire. What we should seek is their salvation, so that if we walk as we should, they will not go astray in following us. They should imitate us if we are imitators of Christ and, if we are not, they should still imitate Him. He cares for His flock and He alone is to be found with those, who care for their flocks, because they are all in Him.
And so we seek no advantage for ourselves when we aim to please men. We want to take our joy in men—and we rejoice when they take pleasure in what is good, not because this exalts us but because it benefits them.
It is clear who is intended by the apostle Paul – If I wanted to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ. And similarly when he says – Be pleasing to all men in all things, even as I in all things please all men. Yet his words are as clear as water, limpid, undisturbed, unclouded. And so you should, as sheep, feed on and drink of his message; do not trample on it or stir it up.
You have listened to our Lord Jesus Christ as He taught His apostles – Let your actions shine before men so that they may see your good deeds and give glory to your Father who is in heaven, for it is the Father who made you thus. We are the people of His pasture, the sheep of His hands. If then you are good, praise is due to Him who made you so, it is no credit to you, for if you were left to yourself, you could only be wicked. Why then do you try to pervert the truth, in wishing to be praised when you do good and blaming God when you do evil? For though He said – Let your works shine before men, in the same Sermon on the Moun,t He also said: Do not parade your good deeds before men. So if you think there are contradictions in Saint Paul, you will find the same in the Gospels but if you refrain from troubling the waters of your heart, you will recognise here, the peace of the Scriptures and with it you will have peace.
And so, my brothers, our concern should be not only to live as we ought but also, to do so in the sight of men; not only to have a good conscience but also, so far as we can in our weakness, so far as we can govern our frailty, to do nothing which might lead our weak brother into thinking evil of us. Otherwise, as we feed on the good pasture and drink the pure water, we may trample on God’s meadow and weaker sheep will have to feed on trampled grass and drink from troubled waters.”
Saint of the Day – 28 August – Blessed Angelo da Pesche d’Isernia TOR (c 1400-1460) Lay Franciscan Tertiary, Holy Beggar, gifted with the charism of levitation, apostle of the poor, spiritual adviser – born in c 1400 in Pesche d’Isernia, Italy and died in 1460 in the Franciscan monastery in Lucera, Foggia, Italy of natural causes.
The blessed is named in the ‘Franciscan Martyrology’ on 28 August, he was born in Pesche d’Isernia around the year 1400, of his life it is known that he was a layman, gardener and beggar of the Franciscan Order, in various Convents in Southern Italy.
Blessed Angelo he had a great spirit of prayer and union with God, which he did not lose even in carrying out the most humble and material works.
It is said that having been called to the house of the Countess of Ariano, wife of Count Innico, he arrived when a concert was being given in the palace in the presence of the Count. Upon hearing that fifteenth-century music, his thoughts went to the celestial choirs and this gave him an ecstasy, rising from the ground for a while.
And like so many other humble friars and holy men in past centuries, thanks to their simplicity and discernment in reading people’s hearts, they were sought out and consulted for advice and guidance, Blessed Angelo da Pesche d’Isernia was also consulted and followed in his simple but profound advice from princes and nobles of the Aragonese kingdom of the Two Sicilies.
He died in the Franciscan Convent of Lucera (Foggia) in 1460, his body rests in this Apulian city.
St Facundinus of Taino St Felix of Venosa St Fortunatus of Salerno St Gaius of Salerno St Gorman of Schleswig Bl Henry Webley St Hermes of Rome Bl Hugh More Bl James Claxton St Januarius of Venosa St Joaquina Vedruna de Mas St Julian of Auvergne St Moses the Black St Pelagius of Istria St Restitutus of Carthage St Rumwold the Prince St Septiminus of Venosa St Vicinius/of Sarsina (Died 330) Biography: https://anastpaul.com/2019/08/28/saint-of-the-day-28-august-saint-vicinius-died-330/ St Vivian of Saintes Bl William Dean — Martyred in the Spanish Civil War: Martyrs of Griñon – 10 beati Martyrs of Tarragona – 6 beati • Blessed Agustín Bermejo Miranda • Blessed Alejandro Iñiguez De Heredia Alzola • Blessed Andrés Merino Báscones • Blessed Antonio Solá Garriga • Blessed Arturo Ros Montalt • Blessed Aurelio da Vinalesa • Blessed Celestino Ruiz Alegre • Blessed Cesáreo España Ortiz • Blessed Eladi Peres Bori • Blessed Evencio Castellanos López • Blessed Francisco López Navarette • Blessed Germán Arribas y Arribas • Blessed Graciliano Ortega Narganes • Blessed Isidre Fábregas Gils • Blessed Jaume Tarragó Iglesias • Blessed Javier Pradas Vidal • Blessed Joan Tomás Gibert • Blessed Joaquim Oliveras Puljarás • Blessed José Gorastazu Labayen • Blessed Josep Camprubí Corrubí • Blessed Juan Bautista Faubel Cano • Blessed Lázaro Ruiz Peral • Blessed Manoel José Sousa de Sousa • Blessed Modest Godo Buscato • Blessed Modest Pamplona Falguera • Blessed Nicolás Rueda Barriocanal • Blessed Serviliano Solá Jiménez • Blessed Teodoro Pérez Gómez