Thought for the Day – 16 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
“Unless You Turn and Become Like Little Children, You Will Not Enter into the Kingdom of Heaven”
“At the beginning of their ministry, before they had been strengthened and enlightened by the Holy Spirit, the Apostles were as ambitious as most other men. One day, the mother of John and James, the sons of Zebedee, came to Jesus and asked Him, if her two sons could have precedence over the other Apostles and sit on the highest thrones in His kingdom, one at His right hand and the other at His left. Jesus disapproved of this desire to predominate. “Whoever wishes to become great among you,” He said, “shall be your servant and, whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave; even as the Son of Man has not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mt 20:26-28).
On another occasion, the Apostles came to Jesus and asked Him, which of them would be the greatest in the kingdom of Heaven. Jesus’ only answer was to call a little child and to place him in the centre of the group. “Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whoever, therefore, humbles himself as this little child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 18:3-4).
This is the lofty teaching of the Gospel. If we wish to be great and pleasing in the eyes of God, we must be unimportant in our own regard and in our relations with men. The Gospel involves an overthrow of human values. Anyone who makes himself insignificant, will become great. Anyone who tries to make himself out to be a great man, becomes of little account in the eyes of God. “God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble” (Cf Js 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5). If we wish to please the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the first thing we must do, is become as little children. In other words, we shall have to suppress our ambition and vanity and destroy our self-love, so that, the Sacred Heart may fill our hearts with the love of God alone!”
Quote/s of the Day – 16 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” and The Memorial of St John Francis Régis SJ (1597-1640)
“The Catholic religion was the religion of your forefathers and the only one Jesus Christ founded; – the one which He promised would endure till the end of time. It is in the Catholic religion alone that you can save your soul.”
“How long are you going to be deaf to His call? Or are you going to lose your soul, which Jesus Christ bought at the price of His Precious Blood?”
“My child, it is indeed the Voice of God you have heard. He has given you a great grace in thus calling you into His one true Church. While you live, never cease to thank Him and bless Him for it.”
(All the above from – Rev Fr D. Chisholm, The Catechism in Examples (London: R & T Washbourne, Ltd
“Brother, I see our Lord and our Lady opening the gates of Paradise for me. Into Your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.” St John Francis Regis on his deathbed
One Minute Reflection –16 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Readings: Second Corinthians 9: 6-11, Psalms 112: 1bc-2, 3-4, 9, Gospel: Matthew 6: 1-6, 16-18
“They have received their reward” – Matthew 6:5
REFLECTION – “Take care not to perform righteous deeds in order that people may see them.” Why not? If people see them then what will you get out of them? “You will have no recompense from your heavenly Father.”My brethren, the Lord is not bringing judgement here but giving an explanation. He casts light on the wiles of our thoughts, He strips bare the secret intentions of our souls. He draws attention to the measure of a just retribution, to those unrighteous, pondering righteousness. Righteousness that sets itself in the sight of others can expect no divine reward from the Father. It wanted to be seen and it was seen; it wanted to please others and it pleased them. It has received the recompense it wanted – the recompense it did not want, it will not have …
“When you give alms, do not blow a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do.” “Blow your trumpet” – this is the exact phrase in that this kind of alms is more like a deed of war than of peace. It passes wholly into its sound but has nothing to do with mercy. It comes from the land of disunion but has not been nourished by goodness. It is a dealing in outward show, not chaste commerce …. “So, then, when you give alms, do not blow a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets to win the praise of others. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward.” You have taken good note: – alms offered at a meeting, in public square and street corners, is not an offering made for the comforting of the poor but has been set forward in the sight of others to attract their admiration … Flee hypocrisy, my brethren, flee from it …. It does not bring comfort to the poor; the groans of the homeless but is only a pretext for it, to seek out even more busily, a spectacular glory for itself. It inflates its praise of the suffering of the poor. – St Peter Chrysologus (406-450) Bishop of Ravenna, Father and Doctor of the Church – Sermon 9
PRAYER – Lord God, in Your wisdom, You created us, by Your providence You rule us, penetrate our inmost being with Your light, so that our way of life may always be one of faithful service to You, as we follow the way of Your Son. Holy Mother, guide us as you guided Your Son. Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God, amen. SACRED Heart of JESUS, Thy Kingdom come! – Indulgence 300 Days – Every time – Raccolta 179 St Pius X, 6 November 1906.
Our Morning Offering – 16 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart”
Act of Love to the Sacred Heart of Jesus By Servant of God Cardinal Rafael Merry del Val (1865-1930)
Reveal Your Sacred Heart to me, O Jesus and show me Its attractions. Unite me to It forever. Grant that all my aspirations and all the beats of my heart, which cease, not even while I sleep, may be a testimonial to You, of my love for You and may it say to You – “Yes, Lord, I am all Yours” the pledge of my allegiance to You, rests forever in my heart and will never cease to be there. May You accept, the slight amount of good that I do and be graciously pleased, to repair all my wrong-doing; so that I may be able, to bless You in time and in eternity. Amen
Saint of the Day – 16 June – St John Francis Régis SJ (1597-1640) Priest, Confessor., renowned Preacher, Missionary., miracle-worker. Born as Jean-François Régis on 31 January 1597 at Fontcouverte, Aude, France and died on 31 December 1640 (aged 43) at La Louvesc, Ardèche, France of natural causes. Patronages – lacemakers, medical social workers, illegitimate children, Regis University, Regis High School (New York City), Regis Jesuit High School (Aurora, Colorado).
The Roman Martyrology states of him today: “In the village of La Louvese, formerly of the Diocese of Vienne in Dauphiny, the decease of St Jean-Francois Régis, Confessor, of the Society of Jesus, distinguished by his zeal for the salvation of souls and by his patience. He was placed on the list of Saints by Pope Clement XII.”
John Francis ministered to Catholics suffering neglect after civil conflict between Calvinists and Catholics devastated France. Much of southern France had fallen under control of the Huguenots who destroyed Catholic Churches and killed the Priests. Home missioners such as Régis had the task of rekindling a once-strong faith.
John Francis was born on 31 January 1597 in Fontcouverte, in southern France. His father, Jean Régis, had recently been ennobled as a result of service rendered during the Wars of the League. His mother, Marguerite de Cugunhan, was of a noble family. John Francis was remarkably holy from childhood. He was disinterested in children’s games, preferring instead, to contemplate the things of God. Sensitive and devout as he was, he managed not to be insufferable and was well-liked by his peers. He was educated at the Jesuit College of Béziers.
In 1616, at the age of 19, he entered the Jesuit Novitiate in Toulouse and began to prepare for a priestly ministry that would save thousands of souls. He studied humanities, philosophy and then theology. After finishing his course in rhetoric at Cahors, Regis was sent to teach grammar at several colleges: Billom (1619–22), Puy-en-Velay (1625–27), and Auch (1627–28). While he was teaching, he also pursued his studies in philosophy at the scholasticate at Tournon. Noted for an intense love of preaching and teaching the Faith, as well as a great desire to save souls, John Francis began his study of theology at Toulouse in 1628. Less than two years later, in 1630, he was Ordained a Priest at 31. The following year, having completed his studies, John Francis made his tertianship.
He was now fully prepared for his vocation and life’s work and entered upon his apostolic career in the summer of 1631. He was a tireless worker who spent most of his life serving the marginalised. As a newly ordained Priest, he worked with bubonic plague victims in Toulouse. From May 1632 until September 1634, his headquarters was at the Jesuit College of Montpellier. Here he laboured for the conversion of the Huguenots, visited hospitals, assisted the poor and the needy, withdrew from vice wayward women and girls and preached Catholic doctrine with tireless zeal to children and the poor. John Francis is best known for his work with at-risk women and orphans. He established safe houses and found jobs for them. He established the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament, which organised charitable collections of money and food from the wealthy. He also established several hostels for prostitutes and helped many become trained lace makers, which provided them with a stable income and an opportunity to avoid the threat of exploitation.
In 1633, he went to the Diocese of Viviers at the invitation of the local Bishop,, Monsignor Louis II de la Baume de Suze, giving missions throughout the Diocese. From 1633 to 1640 he evangelised more than fifty districts in le Vivarais, le Forez, and le Velay. John Francis laboured diligently on behalf of both Priests and laypersons. His preaching style was said to have been simple and direct. He appealed to the uneducated peasantry and immense numbers of conversions resulted.
Others it seems, were jealous of his success in reaping a harvest of conversions.His boldness – perceived as arrogance in some cases – led to a conflict with certain other Priests, a period of tension with the local Bishop and even threats of violence from those whose vices he condemned. Although he longed to devote himself to the conversion of the indigenous inhabitants of Canada, he remained in France all his not very long life. The influence of the best people on the one hand and on the other the patience and humility of the Saint, soon succeeded in confounding the calumny and caused the discreet and enlightened ardour of Father John Francis to shine forth with renewed splendour.
Less moderate indeed was his love of mortification, which he practiced with extreme rigour on all occasions, without ruffling, in the least, his evenness of temper. As he returned to the house one evening after a hard day’s toil, one of his confrères laughingly asked: “Well, Father Regis, speaking candidly, are you not very tired?”“No”, he replied, “I am as fresh as a rose.” He then took only a bowl of milk and a little fruit, which usually constituted both his dinner and supper and finally, after long hours of prayer, lay down on the floor of his room, the only bed he knew.
John Francis walked from town to town, in rough mountainous areas where travel was difficult, especially in the winter. On one particularly treacherous journey, Fr John Francis slipped and broke his leg. Leaning on his companion, he managed to make it to town, where he refused the help of the doctor in favour of spending a few hours in the Confessional. When he emerged several hours later, his badly broken leg had been healed.
In mid-December 1640 the Jesuit Missioner was giving a Mission at Montregard; – he interrupted his work there to return to his home at Le Puy because he had an intimation that he would soon die. He wanted to prepare for his death so he spent three days in retreat before making a general confession. Then he and his companion, Brother Claude Bideau, went back to Montregard to finish the Mission there.
On 23 December the two set out for La Louvesc, the site of the next Mission but a winter storm blew in and they lost their way in the snow and had to spend the night in a battered shack. The next day they were able to reach La Louvesc where they found people waiting for them. Rather than taking a few minutes to eat and rest, John Francis immediately began preaching, then heard Confessions and celebrated Mass. So many people came for Confession that hedid not stop until it was time for Midnight Mass. Both Christmas day and the following day were also spent in the Confessional. Because of the crush of people, John Francis had to hear Confessions in the Sacristy where a broken window let in cold air directly onto him. By late afternoon he felt weak and suddenly collapsed. He was put in the Parish Priest’s bed but people followed him even there, seeking to confess. He lapsed into unconsciousness and the physician who attended him, confirmed that pneumonia had set in. Nothing could be done. John Francis lingered on until 31 December, praying constantly. He died as he had lived:,entirely poured out for souls.
But immediately after his death Regis was venerated as a saint. Pilgrims came in crowds to his tomb and since then, the concourse has only grown. Mention must be made of the fact that a visit made in 1804 to the blessed remains of the Apostle of Vivarais, was the beginning of the vocation of the Blessed Curé of Ars, Jean-Baptiste Vianney, whom the Church has raised in his turn to her altars.“Everything good that I have done”, he said when dying, “I owe to [John Francis] him.” The place where John Francis died has been transformed into a mortuary Chapel. Nearby is a spring of fresh water to which those who are devoted to Saint John Francis attribute miraculous cures through his intercession.
Today, Régis’ name lives on across the world. There are Churches, lakes, mountains, Schools. hotels, apartment complexes, swimming pools and Streets with his name. The Jesuit mission at Conewago, PA was named after him.
John Francis Régis was Beatified om 18 May 1716 by Pope Clement XI and Canonised on 5 April 1737 by Pope Clement XII.
Beata Vergine Addolorata / The Blessed Virgin of Sorrows, Campocavallo, Osimo, Ancona, Marche, Italy (1892) – 16 June, The first Sunday of August., 15 September (Feast o Our Lady of Sorrows), The last Sunday of September AND special Devotions thrughout May: 16 June
In the 1870s, a small country Chapel was built three miles from Osimo, a Town just inland from the Adriatic near the world-famous Shrine of Loreto. Don Giovanni Sorbellini, appointed in 1883 to say holy day Masses at the Campocavallo Chapel, hung in it an oleograph of the Pietà he had bought from a travelling salesman.
The Miraculous image is an oleograph, a particular type of print that imitates oil painting, measures 38cm x 52cm and portrays the Virgin holding the lifeless body of Jesus in her arms, just taken down from the Cross. On the ground some instruments of the passion are depicted and in the background the City of Jerusalem. Our Lady has her gaze turned to heaven in action, not of resigned pain, but of complete uniformity of her will to that of God.
On 16 June 1892, a few families who stayed to pray after Mass saw the eyes of the Sorrowful Virgin move and blink and tears dropped onto her cheeks. Everyone then shouted: “Our Lady is crying!”. News of theMiracle travelled rapidly and widely.
On 7 July a blind woman regained her sight whilst at prayer before the image. The same year, Don Sorbellini began building the present magnificent Sanctuary, consecrated in 1905. For at least 10 years, in truth, there are many miracles and testimonies of those who saw the movement and tears and even today!
It’s the focus of the Festa del Covo, a Nativity-themed harvest festival the first Sunday of August, and the Festa dell’Addolorata the third Sunday of September, the date of the Consecration of the Church and Crowning of Mary. The Feast of the first Miracle is celebrated today, 16 June and of course, the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows is celebrated o 15 September.
St Actinea of Volterra St Aitheachan of Colpe St Amandus of Beaumont Bl Antoine Auriel St Aurelian of Arles St Aureus of Mainz
St Berthaldus St Ceccardus of Luni St Cettin of Oran St Colman McRhoi St Crescentius of Antioch St Cunigunde of Rapperswil St Curig of Wales St Cyriacus of Iconium
Blessed Donizetti Tavares de Lima (1882-1961) Priest, Apostle of the poor, the elderly and the sick, miracle-worker, known to bilocate. A prophecy related to Vatican II: “No, no, Archbishop! We won’t see this disgrace (prophesying that they both would die soon) but it will come! This was not just a dream, nor a nightmare! The darkness will fall over this world! I beg you: don’t let them destroy the Altars!” An amazing life: https://anastpaul.com/2020/06/16/saint-of-the-day-16-june-blessed-donizetti-tavares-de-lima-1882-1961/
St Elidan St Felix of San Felice St Ferreolus of Besançon St Ferrutio of Besançon Bl Gaspare Burgherre St Graecina of Volterra St Ismael of Wales St John Francis Régis SJ (1597-1640) Priest, Confessor
St Maurus of San Felice St Palerio of Telese St Similian of Nantes Bl Thomas Redyng St Tycho of Amathus — Martyrs of Africa: A group of five Christians martyred together. We know nothing else but the names – Cyriacus, Diogenes, Marcia, Mica, Valeria. They were martyred in an unknown location in Africa, date unknown.
Martyrs of Làng Cóc: A group of five Christian laymen, four farmers and a doctor, from the same village in the apostolic vicariate of Central Tonkin (in modern Vietnam). During the persecutions of emperor Tu Duc, they were each ordered to stomp on a cross to show their contempt for Christianity; they each refused. Imprisoned, tortured and martyred. • Anrê Tuong • Ðaminh Nguyen • Ðaminh Nguyen Ðuc Mao • Ðaminh Nhi • Vinh Son Tuong The were beheaded on 16 June 1862 in Làng Cóc, Nam Ðinh, Vietnam and canonised on 19 June 1988 by St Pope John Paul II.