Posted in ADVENT REFLECTIONS, GOD ALONE!, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The DIVINE INFANT, The INCARNATION, The REDEMPTION, The WILL of GOD

Thought for the Day – 22 December – The Humility of Mary

Thought for the Day – 22 December – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Humility of Mary

“The profound humility of Mary was commensurate with her high dignity.
As Dante put it, she was the humblest and noblest of creatures. “Umile ed altra piu che creatura” (Paradiso 33:2)
None of the saints was humbler than Mary, just as none of them was greater.
It was an Archangel who came down from Heaven and bowed before her as he praised her in the highest terms as “full of grace” and announced the unique dignity she was to receive as Mother of God.
She bowed her head in turn and declared herself to be the handmaid of the Lord, ready to do His will in all things.
Then she went to visit and congratulate her cousin, Elizabeth, because she had heard from the Angel that she was to be the mother of the Precursor.
When she arrived at the house, she was greeted by Elizabeth with the words: “How have I deserved that the mother of my Lord should come to me?”
Far from being flattered, however, Mary attributed all her glory to God and replied with the Magnificat, a hymn of praise and gratitude in God’s honour.
It was the same when Jesus was born in the manger at Bethlehem.
There was a sudden brightness in the sky and the angels sang “Glory to God in the highest and on earth, peace among men of goodwill.”
But even though she held the Lord of Heaven and earth, in her arms, the Blessed Virgin asked for nothing for herself.
Her only desire was to do the will of God.
The love of Jesus was enough for her.
She did not seek her own glory but the glory of God.
Likewise, on the weary journey into Egypt, she was content because, she was with Jesus and in the obscure life of Nazareth, she desired no other treasure but Her divine Son.
During His public life, she followed Him in silence.
Once only she spoke in a submissive tone, in order to ask a favour for others but not for herself.
It was at the wedding celebrations in Cana, when she asked for the first miracle, in such a way, that it was not even apparent that it was she who had wrung the favour from the filial heart of Jesus.
It was always like that, up to the time of Calvary and the Resurrection, the Ascension and Pentecost.
She remained humbly in the background all the time.
Now, after her departure from this earth, her humility has been gloriously crowned in the dogma of the Assumption and in her Coronation as Queen of Angels and of Saints.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in ADVENT QUOTES, ADVENT REFLECTIONS, DECEMBER - The IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, MARIAN Antiphons, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HOLY SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, The ANNUNCIATION

Quote/s of the Day – 22 December – My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord – Luke 1:46

Quote/s of the Day – 22 December – Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Advent, O Rex Gentium/O King of all Nations, Readings: 1 Samuel 1:24-28, 1 Samuel 2:1, 4-5, 6-7, 8, Luke 1:46-56

“Mary said: My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour.” – Luke 1:46-47

“The Lord has exalted me by a gift so great,
so unheard of, that language is useless to describe it
and the depths of love in my heart can scarcely grasp it.
I offer then all the powers of my soul
in praise and thanksgiving.
As I contemplate His greatness,
which knows no limits,
I joyfully surrender my whole life,
my senses, my judgment,
for my spirit rejoices in
the eternal Godhead of that Jesus,
that Saviour,
whom I have conceived in this world of time.”

“Those who refuse to be humble cannot be saved.
They cannot say with the prophet:
See, God comes to my aid;
the Lord is the helper of my soul.
But anyone who makes himself humble,
like a little child,
is greater in the kingdom of heaven.”

St Bede the Venerable (673-735)
Father and Doctor of the Church

Posted in ADVENT REFLECTIONS, CHRIST the KING, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, HOMILIES, MARIAN Antiphons, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, The INCARNATION, The O ANTIPHONS, The REDEMPTION, The WORD

Advent Reflection – 22 December – O Rex Gentium/O King of all Nations – ‘ … that we might see Him, touch Him and hear Him speak.”

Advent Reflection – 22 December – Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Advent, O Rex Gentium/O King of all Nations, Readings: 1 Samuel 1:24-281 Samuel 2:14-56-78Luke 1:46-56

The Lord is at hand, come let us adore Him.

O KING OF ALL NATIONS
and keystone of the Church
come and save man,
whom You formed from the dust!

…For he who is mighty has done great things for me and holy is his name. … Luke 1:49

REFLECTION – “Then Mary said: “My soul magnifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour … He has helped Israel his child (Lk 1:54 Gk), remembering his mercy and the covenant he made with Abraham and his descendants forever.”
Do you observe how the Virgin surpasses the perfection of the patriarch and seals the covenant God made with Abraham when He said to him: “This is to be the covenant between me and you”? (Gn 17:11) … It is the song of this prophecy that the holy Mother of God addressed to God when she said: “My soul magnifies the Lord …, for He who is Mighty has magnified me; holy is His name. In making me the mother of God He preserves my virginity. The full number of every generation is summed up within my womb, that they may be made holy in it. For He has blessed all ages, men and woman, young people, children, the old” (…)

“He has put down the mighty from their thrones and exalted the lowly” (…) The lowly, the gentile peoples hungry for righteousness (Mt 5:6), have been exalted. By making known their lowliness and hunger for God and by begging for God’s word, just as the Canaanite woman asked for crumbs (Mt 15:27), they have been satisfied with the riches concealed within the divine mysteries.
For Jesus Christ our God, son of the Virgin, has handed out to the gentiles the whole inheritance of divine favours.
He has raised up Israel his child: not just any Israel but His child, on whose exalted birth He bestows honour. This is why the Mother of God calls this people her child and her heir. God, who found this people worn out by the letter, wearied by the Law, calls it to His grace. By giving this name to Israel He raises him up, “remembering his mercy, as he promised to our forefathers, Abraham and his seed for ever.”
These few words sum up the whole mystery of our salvation. Wanting to save humankind and seal the covenant established with our fathers, Jesus Christ then “inclined the heavens and came down” (Ps 18[17]:10).
Thus He manifested Himself to us, putting Himself within our reach so that we might see Him, touch Him and hear Him speak.” – A 4th century homily (Incorrectly attributed to Gregory of Neocaesarea, called “Thaumaturgos”, no. 2)

Prayer – The Magnificat
The Canticle of Mary
Luke 1:46-55

My soul glorifies the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God, my Saviour
He looks on His servant in her lowliness
Henceforth, all ages will call me blessed:
The Almighty works marvels for me,
holy is His Name!
His mercy is from age to age,
on those who fear Him.
He puts forth His arm in strength
and scatters the proud-hearted.
He casts the mighty from their thrones
and raises the lowly.
He fills the starving with good things,
sends the rich away empty.
He protects Israel, His servant,
remembering His mercy,
the mercy promised to our fathers,
to Abraham and his sons forever.
Amen

Posted in ADVENT PRAYERS, HYMNS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS for SEASONS, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The INCARNATION, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The O ANTIPHONS

Our Morning Offering – 22 December – O Come, Divine Messiah!

Our Morning Offering – 22 December – Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Advent, O Rex Gentium/O King of all Nations

O Come, Divine Messiah!
By Abbé Simon J Pellegrin (1663-1745
)
English Translation of French Carol Venez Divin Messie
Translator: Sister Mary of St Philip, SND

O come, divine Messiah!
The world in silence waits the day
When hope shall sing its triumph,
And sadness flee away.

Dear Saviour haste;
Come, come to earth,
Dispel the night and show Thy face
And bid us hail the dawn of grace.

O come, divine Messiah!
The world in silence waits the day
When hope shall sing its triumph,
And sadness flee away.

O Christ, whom nations sigh for,
Whom priest and prophet long foretold,
Come break the captive fetters;
Redeem the long-lost fold.

You come in peace and meekness,
And lowly will Thy cradle be;
All clothed in human weakness
We shall Thy Godhead see.

Dear Saviour haste;
Come, come to earth,
Dispel the night and show Thy face
And bid us hail the dawn of grace.

O come, divine Messiah!
The world in silence waits the day
When hope shall sing its triumph,
And sadness flee away.
Amen!

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 22 December – Saint Hungerus Frisus of Utrecht (Died 866)

Saint of the Day – 22 December – Saint Hungerus Frisus of Utrecht (Died 866) Bishop of Utrecht – born in the Low Countries, now the Netherlands and died in 866 at Prum, Germany of natural causes. Also known as Hunger.

Painting by Blessed Fra Angelico

St Hungerus was the Bishop of Utrecht from 854 to 866. We are not sure when he was born. After the death of his predecessor Luidger of Utrecht, Luidger’s nephew Craft, was offered the seat. However, Craft, a very wealthy person, refused because he was afraid that he would attract Viking raids.

Instead the Canon, St Hungerus was appointed. At first, his relations with the Vikings were peaceful but eventually Utrecht was threatened by the Vikings, at which the Bishop and the entire clergy of Utrecht fled to Saint Odilienberg, near Roermond. During this time of exile, Hungerus spent his time teaching the faith in the surrounding areas. In 858 King Lothair II made a Monastery available for them. Later, the Bishop settled in Prum and then in Deventer.

By all accounts, St Hungerus was a Godly and pious man, who unlike his predecessors, did not engage in nepotism. In the case of the childless marriage between King Lotharius and his wife, he defended the sanctity of their marriage on Biblical and theological grounds but against his counsel, to secure his succession, Lothair repudiated his wife and married Waldrada, with whom he had a son.

St Hungerus Died in Prum, Germany of natural causes and his feast is today 22 December.

St Catherine Cathedral, the Seat of the Bishop of Utrecht
Posted in MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 22 December

St Frances Xavier Cabrini (1850-1917) – Universal optional memorial (except in the USA which is on 13 November)
About St Frances:

https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/12/22/saint-of-the-day-22-december-st-frances-xavier-cabrini-m-s-c-1850-1917/

St Abban of New Ross
Bl Adam of Saxony
St Amaswinthus of Málaga
St Athernaise of Fife
St Bertheid of Münster
St Chaeremon of Nilopolis
St Flavian of Acquapendente
St Honoratus of Toulouse
St Hungerus of Utrecht (Died 866) Bishop
St Ischirione of Alexandria
Blessed Jutta of Disibodenberg OSB (c 1084-1136)
Biography:

https://anastpaul.com/2018/12/22/saint-of-the-day-22-december-blessed-jutta-of-disibodenberg-osb-c-1084-1136/
Bl Ottone of Toulouse
Blessed Thomas Holland SJ (1600-1642) Priest and Martyr
His Life and Death:

https://anastpaul.com/2019/12/22/saint-of-the-day-22-december-blessed-thomas-holland-sj-1600-1642-priest-and-martyr-his-faith-was-his-crime/
St Zeno of Nicomedia

Martyrs of Ostia – (3 saints): A group of Christians martyred together. The only details about them to survive are three names – Demetrius, Florus and Honoratus. They were martyred at Ostia, Italy.

Martyrs of Rhaitu – (43 saints): 43 monks martyred by Blemmyes, in Raíthu, Egypt, date unknown.

Martyrs of Via Lavicana – (30 saints): A group of 30 Christians martyred together in the persecutions of Diocletian.
c 303 in Rome, Italy and were buried between two bay trees on the Via Lavicana outside Rome.