Thought for the Day – 6 December – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Glory of God
“The whole of creation manifests the glory of God. The grass of the field, the trees of the forest, the insects and birds of the air, the creatures on the earth and in the sea, the stars in the sky – they all speak to us of the power and beauty of the Creator.
You also were created by and for God, Who is the beginning and end of all things. In all thoughts, actions and affections, therefore, you should seek the glory of God. God, indeed, has no need of your small contribution to enhance His glory. His glory is complete and perfect in Himself, in Heaven and in Hell. God does not need you but, you need God. It is your strict obligation, not only to proclaim the glory of God but, also, to work for its triumph in yourself and in all things.
The man who loves God above all things seeks only His glory. The man who loves himself more than he loves God, however, seeks his own petty, worldly glorification and strays away from the main road of life which should lead him towards God.
Holiness consists in love – not earthly love, of course, but supernatural love.”
Quote/s of the Day – 6 December – The Second Sunday of Advent
“Prepare the way of the Lord make his paths straight”
“Open wide your door to the One who comes. Open your soul, throw open the depths of your heart to see the riches of simplicity, the treasures of peace, the sweetness of grace. Open your heart and run to meet the Sun of eternal light that illuminates all men.”
St Ambrose (340-397) Father and Doctor of the Church
“I speak out in order to lead Him into your hearts but He does not choose to come where I lead Him, unless you prepare the way for Him.”
St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor of the Church
“If we wish to make any progress in the service of God, we must begin everyday of our life, with new eagerness. We must keep ourselves, in the presence of God, as much as possible and have no other view or end, in all our actions but the divine honour.”
Advent Reflection – 6 December – The Second Sunday of Advent, Readings: Isaiah 40:1-5, 9-11, Psalms 85:9-10, 11-12, 13-14 (8), 2 Peter 3:8-14, Mark 1:1-8
“Prepare the way of the Lord make his paths straight” – Mark 1:3
“I am unworthy to stoop down to loosen the thongs of his sandals” – Mark 1:7
REFLECTION – “Jesus came to John to be baptised by him. John tried to prevent him, saying: “I need to be baptised by you and yet you are coming to me?” (Mt 3:13-14) “I am the voice, the voice crying in the wilderness – prepare the way for the Lord.” So I cannot be silent, Lord, in Your presence. I “need to be baptised by You and do You come to me?” (…) You existed from the beginning, You were with God and You were God (Jn 1:1). You are the radiance of the Father’s glory, the perfect image of the perfect Father (Heb 1:3). You are the true light enlightening every person who comes into the world (Jn 1:9). You were in the world yet You have come to where You were already. You have become flesh but You have not been changed into flesh. You have lived among us, appearing to Your servants in the likeness of a servant (Jn 1:14; 14:23; Phil 2:7). You, by Your holy name have bridged heaven and earth and do You come to me? You, so great, to such as I? King to herald, Master to servant? (…)
I know the distance between the earth and the Creator, between the clay and the potter. I know how far I, a lamp lit by Your grace, am outshone by You, the Sun of Righteousness (Mal 3:20; Jn 5:35). You are concealed by the pure cloud of Your body but I still recognise Your sovereignty. I acknowledge my servile condition; I proclaim Your greatness. I admit Your absolute authority and my own lowly estate. “I am unworthy to undo the strap of your sandal;” how then could I dare to touch Your Immaculate Head? How could I stretch out my hand over You, who “stretched out the heavens like a tent,” and “set the earth upon the waters” (Pss. 104:2; 136:6)? (…) Surely it is not for me to pray over You, for You are the one who receives the prayers even of those who have no knowledge of You.” – Homily attributed to Saint Gregory Thaumaturgus the Wonderworker (c 213-270) Bishop (His life:https://anastpaul.com/2018/11/17/saint-of-the-day-17-november-st-gregory-thaumaturgus-the-wonder-worker-c-213-c-270/)
MEDITATION – Bombarded as we are by a deafening decibel culture; battered by commercialism; bruised by the relentless onslaught of a consumerist society; dazed and dazzled as we are by tinsel, trash and trinkets; overwhelmed by fake news, fake viruses, fake politicians, fake economies – we need the wilderness of silence and solitude – to make that most intimate and intricate journey – the wilderness of our heart. The heart of our Advent preparation is the preparation of our heart.
PRAYER – Almighty and merciful God, let neither our daily work nor the cares of this life prevent us from hastening to meet your Son. Teach us Holy Father God, silence and solitude, to hear and learn, then lead us into the company of Your Son, as He comes to save us! And may His Mother and ours, the most pure Virgin Mary be our intercessor and advocate. We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.
Our Morning Offering – 6 December – Second Sunday of Advent
Grant us Your Light, O Lord By The Venerable St Bede (673-735) Father and Doctor of the Church
Grant us Your light, O Lord, so that the darkness of our hearts, may wholly pass away and we may come at last, to the light of Christ. For Christ is that morning star, who, when the night of this world has passed, brings to His saints, the promised light of life and opens to them, everlasting day. Amen
Saint of the Day – 6 December – Saint Abraham of Kratia ( c 474–c 558) Bishop, Monk, Hermit – born in c 474 at Emesa, Syria and died in c 558 in Palestine of natural causes.
Abraham of Kratia was born in Emesa, Syria, in 474. After becoming a Monk, the community in his Monastery was dispersed by nomadic raiders. Abraham himself fled to Constantinople.
In Constantinople, Abraham became procurator of another Monastery and at the age of only twenty-six he was made Abbot of a house at Kratia in Bithynia. After some ten years as Abbot, he secretly went to Palestine to seek out solitude and a life of contemplation but his holiness, administrative qualities and love of the Church made him a perfect candidate for the ecclesiastical honour of the role of a Bishop. He was, therefore, forced to return by his Bishop to be made the Bishop of Kratia.
After thirteen years as Bishop, he once more fled to Palestine looking for a life of solitude and prayer. His remaining days were spent in a Palestinian Monastery as a Hermit and he died there around 558.
St Abraham of Kratia ( c 474–c 558) Bishop St Aemilianus the Martyr Bl Angelica of Milazzo St Asella of Rome St Boniface the Martyr St Dativa the Martyr St Dionysia the Martyr St Gerard of La Charite St Gertrude the Elder St Giuse Nguyen Duy Khang St Isserninus of Ireland Bl Janos Scheffler St Leontia the Martyr St Majoricus the Martyr St Peter Pascual (Died 1299) Martyr His life and death: https://anastpaul.com/2019/12/06/saint-of-the-day-6-december-saint-peter-pascual-died-1299-bishop-and-martyr/ St Polychronius St Tertus — Martyred in the Spanish Civil War: • Blessed Esteban Vázquez Alonso • Blessed Florencio Rodríguez Guemes • Blessed Gregorio Cermeño Barceló • Blessed Heliodoro Ramos García • Blessed Ireneo Rodríguez González • Blessed Juan Lorenzo Larragueta Garay • Blessed Luis Martínez Alvarellos • Blessed Luisa María Frías Cañizares • Blessed Miguel Lasaga Carazo • Blessed Narciso Pascual y Pascual • Blessed Pascual Castro Herrera • Blessed Vicente Vilumbrales Fuente