DAY TWO – NOVENA of DEVOTION to the PRECIOUS BLOOD of JESUS
Opening Prayer for each Day:
Grant me the grace to know You, to love You and to be truly sorry that I have offended You. I ask this grace by Your Precious Blood – By that Precious Blood, which bathed Your Sacred Body and trickled down to the ground in the Garden of Olives. By that Precious Blood, which poured forth from Your Sacred Body during the scourging. By that Precious Blood, which covered Your Sacred Face when You were Crowned with Thorns. By that Precious Blood, which burst from Your hands and feet on Calvary. By that Precious Blood, which came forth from Your Sacred Heart after Your death. By that Precious Blood, which we drink in Holy Communion and of which You said: “He who feeds on My Flesh and drinks My Blood has life eternal.“ Amen.
Day Two: Jesus Sheds Blood in the Circumcision
Eternal Father, we offer You the Precious Blood of Jesus shed in the circumcision. In the fullness of time, You sent Your only Son, born of a woman, born under the Law. Help us to live in our lives the true spirit of laws. In Baptism we have become Your children, the new people of God. Preserve in us, Your strength, to live with faith, hope and charity. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Our Father … Glory be … V. Praise and thanksgiving be evermore to Jesus. R. Who by His Blood has saved us. V. Glory to the Blood of Jesus! R. Now and forever. Amen
Thought for the Day – 23 June – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
Progress in the Love of God
“The entire Christian system is based on the love of God. This, is “the greatest and first commandment” (Mt 22:38) of Jesus, from which the second commandment, to love our neighbour, naturally flows. A man who does not observe this first commandment is not a Christian, whereas a man who endeavours to increase, everyday, his love for God, is a saint. There are may grades of ascent in this love but, the basic step is indicated in the words of our Divine Master: “He who has my commandments and keeps them, he is is who loves me” (Jn 14:15,21).
The love of God should not consist of an empty and ineffective sentimentality but, should comprise, a sincere determinations to please God by carrying out His will, without reserve and by becoming more closely united to Him, by the help of His holy grace. Progress in the love of God is divided by the masters of the spiritual lfe into three stages: (1) the period of purification; (2) the period of illuminations and; (3) the period of union with God. We may have advanced no farther than the first stage because there is still so much to be purified in our souls. Nevertheless, let us ask God’s grace, to help us to begin this work immediately!”
Quote/s of the Day – 23 June – The Memorial of St Joseph Cafasso (1811-1860)
“A single word from him – a look, a smile, his very presence – sufficed to dispel melancholy, drive away temptation and produce holy resolution in the soul.”
St John Bosco, writing about St Joseph
“All a person’s holiness, perfection and profit lies in doing God’s will perfectly…. Happy are we, if we succeed in pouring out our heart into God’s, in uniting our desires and our will to His, to the point, that one heart and one will are formed, wanting, what God wants, wanting, in the way, in the time and in the circumstances, what He desires and willing it all, for no other reason, than that God wills it.”
“We are born to love, we live to love and we will die, to love still more.”
“Never do anything that your heart tells you, is displeasing to Mary and, in addition, never deny her anything that you know she would welcome and desire from you.”
“Heaven is filled with converted sinners , of all kinds and there is room for more!”
One Minute Reflection – 23 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Readings: Genesis 15: 1-12, 17-18, Psalms 105: 1-2, 3-4, 6-7, 8-9, Matthew 7: 15-20
“By their fruits, you shall know them.” – Matthew 7:20
REFLECTION – “Try to gather together more frequently to give thanks to God and to praise Him. For when you come together frequently, Satan’s powers are undermined, and the destruction he threatens, is destroyed in the unanimity of your faith. Nothing is better than peace, in which all warfare between heaven and earth is brought to an end.
None of this will escape you if you have perfect faith and love toward Jesus Christ. These are the beginning and the end of life – faith the beginning, love the end. When these two are found together, there is God and everything else concerning right living follows from them. No-one professing faith sins; no-one possessing love hates. “A tree is known by its fruit.” So those who profess to belong to Christ will be known by what they do. For the work we are about, is not a matter of words here and now but depends on the power of faith and on being found faithful to the end.
It is better to remain silent and to be, than to talk and not be. Teaching is good if the teacher also acts. Now there was one teacher who “spoke, and it was made” (Ps 33:9) and even what He did in silence, is worthy of the Father. He who has the word of Jesus can truly listen also to His silence in order to be perfect, that he may act through his speech and be known by his silence. Nothing is hidden from the Lord but even our secrets are close to Him. Let us then do everything, in the knowledge, that He is dwelling within us, so that we may be His temples and He may be God within us.” – St Ignatius of Antioch (c 35-c 108) Bishop and Martyr, Apostolic Father of the Church – Letter to the Ephesians, 13-15
PRAYER – God our Father, You open the gates of the kingdom of heaven to those who are born again of water and the Holy Spirit. Increase the grace You have given, so that the people who have been purified from all sin, may not forfeit the promised blessing of Your love. Grant that the Holy Spirit may ever guide and bear us in His inspiration. We make our pray through Christ, our Lord, in union with You and the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen O HEART of love, I place all my trust in Thee; for though I fear all things from my weakness, I hope all things from Thy mercies. – Ejaculation of Saint Margaret Mary – Indulgence 300 Days, Everytime – Raccolta 180 St Pius X, 3 June 1908.
Our Morning Offering – 23 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart”
May the Heart of Jesus be the King of My Heart! By St Francis de Sales (1567-1622) Doctor of Charity
May Your Heart dwell always, in our hearts! May Your Blood ever flow, in the veins of our souls! O Sun of our hearts, You give life to all things, by the rays of Your goodness! I will not go, until Your Heart has strengthened me, O Lord Jesus! May the Heart of Jesus be the King of my heart! Blessed be God. Amen
Saint of the Day – 23 June – Blessed Marie of Oignies (1167-1213) Recluse, Mystic, Ascetic, chastely married in continence, spiritual advisor., gifted with supernatural insight and prophesy. Marie had a deep devotion to the Passion, the Blessed Virgin and for the Souls in Purgatory, for whom she offered many prayers and penances. Born in 1167 at Nivelles, Diocese of Liege, Belgium and died n 23 June 1213 of natural causes. Patronages – against fever, of women in labour . Also known as Mary, Maria, Mariam. Miriam.
Marie of Oignies was born of very wealthy parents. But while still very young, she rejected everything childish or vain — games, beautiful clothing, ornaments. At the age of fourteen, despite her desire to be a nun, she was obliged to marry a virtuous young lord. Her holy life caused admiration in her spouse and decided him to follow her examples and together they resolved to practice continence for life, to distribute their wealth to the poor and consecrate themselves to works of piety. The demon tried every artifice to make them relent in their holy resolution but failed. They drew down on themselves the most abundant blessings, as well as sarcasms and insults from the worldly.
Marie had the gift of tears and could not look at a Crucifix without breaking into a torrent of tears or being ravished in ecstasy. When a Priest told her to cease these exhibitions, she asked God to make him understand that it was not possible for a creature to arrest tears which the Holy Spirit obliges to well up. And the Priest, that same day while saying his Mass, began to shed so many tears that the Altar cloths and his vestments, were wet with them.
She had a great devotion to Saint John the Evangelist and conversed with him, as well as with her Guardian Angel. By vision and revelation, she often knew the temptations and secrets of the hearts of the persons who consulted her. She converted many, obtained graces by her prayers for the living and especially for the dead, for whom she offered prayers and sacrifices and suffered various illnesses with invincible patience. Her many visitors made her life of contemplation difficult and she decided to change her residence; her husband permitted her to go to Oignies, where she lived in retreat amidst her heavenly favours and conversations.
She saw the place destined for her in heaven and gave up her holy soul surrounded by angelic songs of bliss. The faithful who had addressed her, were so impressed with the value of her intercession, that her relics became the object of great respect. Buried at Oignies, her remains in 1609 were placed in a silver reliquary in its Parish Church of Our Lady; in 1817 they were transferred to the Church of Saint Nicolas at Nivelle, near her birthplace.
Saint John‘s Eve Vigil of the Feast of the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist
Madonna del Sasso, Bibbiena, Arezzo, Toscana, Italy (1347) – 23 June:
The little seer , Caterina, 7 years old, while her mother was washing clothes in the Vessa stream, moved away a little, placing herself near a stone . Here she saw a beautiful lady dressed all in white who, having entered the nearby field of beans, collected several and placed them in the bosom of the girl. Meanwhile, the mother was busy and the little girl ran to tell her of the lady and showed her the beans she had received but the mother paid no attention to her daughter’s meeting.
Returning to the village, Caterina complained to her mother because the beans had grown so much that their weight was difficult for her to bear but her mother told her to be patient as they would soon be home. In the evening, the mother wanted to cook some of those beans but she noticed that they were full of blood. The whole country ran to see the prodigy. The following morning, everyone went in procession to the stone and here they decided to build a Chapel in honour of the Madonna. The apparition of the Madonna del Sasso was preceded and followed by two further miraculous events.
Also in 1347, shortly before the vision, a white dove appeared on the top of the stone and was approached only by children and an old hermit , Beato Martino da Poppi, a Camaldolese Monk, who had his hermitage nearby . When the children approached it, the dove pecked at their fingers and hands but if adults approached, it flew away. In 1444, several people saw golden-blue light globes inside and outside the C hurch these appeared for about three months The podestà, together with some family and friends, returning from a hunting party, about 300 meters away from the sacred stone, saw a crowd of white-dressed young men heading in procession to the Church. A small Chapel was immediately built next to the boulder, later enlarged to include the entire boulder. It now host sthe beautiful image of the Madonna del Sasso, painted by Bicci di Lorenzo in 1435 . This image miraculously remained intact in the fire that completely destroyed the Church in 1486.
The Dominican Fathers were custodians of the Sanctuary since 1468,. They immediately worked on the construction of the current Sanctuary, in pure Renaissance style, based on a design by Giuliano da Maiano. A great amount of funds for the construction of the Sanctuary and Convent, came from Savonarola in 1495, who solicited help from noble families of Florence and from the Medici in particular.
Bl Félix of Cîteaux St Felix of Sutri Bl Frances Martel Bl Francis O’Sullivan St Hidulphus of Hainault St James of Toul St John of Rome
St Joseph Cafasso (1811-1860) “Priest of the Gallows”, Priest, Theology Lecturer, Social Reformer, Confessor, Spiritual Director (of St John Bosco and quite a few other Saints), Rector of a post-Ordination Theological College, member of the Third Order of St Francis. His will bequeathed everything to aid the Little House of Divine Providence which was the religious order founded by St Joseph Benedict Cottolengo (1786-1842). St John Bosco (1815-1888) preached the funeral Mass homily. Patronages – Italian prisons, Prison chaplains, Prisoners, those condemned to death. St Joseph Cafasso’s Biography: https://anastpaul.com/2018/06/23/saint-of-the-day-23-june-st-joseph-cafasso-1811-1860-priest-of-the-gallows/
Bl Lupo de Paredes Blessed Marie of Oignies (1167-1213) Recluse, Mystic, Ascetic St Moeliai of Nendrum Bl Peter of Juilly Bl Thomas Corsini of Orvieto St Thomas Garnet Bl Walhere of Dinant St Zenas of Philadelphia St Zeno of Philadelphia — Martyrs of Ancyra: A family of converts who were arrested, tortured and sent in chains to Ancyra, Galatia (modern Ankara, Turkey) where he was tortured more by order of governor Agrippinus during the persecutions of Diocletian. Martyr. They were – Eustochius, Gaius, Lollia, Probus, Urban. They were roasted over a fire and finally beheaded c 300 in Ancyra, Galatia (modern Ankara, Turkey).
Martyrs of Nicomedia: During the persecutions of Diocletian, many Christians fled their homes to live in caves in the area of Nicomedia. In 303 troops descended on the area, systematically hunted them down and murdered all they could find.