Thought for the Day – 6 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
A Ladder Ascending to God
“Let us lower our eyes and observe the world around us. Here again, everything speacks to us of God, for everything is a reflection of His power and goodness. From the tiny flowers which opens its perfumed petals to the dawn and closes them again to the sunset, as if in an an act of self-effacement before its Creator, to the pines and cedars of the forest, all nature seems to send up a hymn of praise and thanksgiving to God. We are surrounded by marvels but the greatest of them all is man, the lord of the universe. The beauty and order which we admire in creatures are concentrated in him; the eye, the ear and the tongue are among the extraordinary gifts which his body has received from God.
But, when we pass from the body to the soul, that spiritual flame which God has kindled in us, we we have reached an object of wonder, far surpassing the splendour of material things. A mind which is capable of thought and reasoning and a heart which is capable of love, belong, not merely to this world but are a living image of our Creator. It is for Him, therefore, that the intellect should function; it is He, that the heart should love!”
Quote/s of the Day– 6 July – “Month of the Precious Blood” – Readings: Genesis 32: 23-33, Psalms 17: 1b, 2-3, 6-7ab, 8b and 15, Matthew 9: 32-3
We are not without a Shepherd!
“I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for the ones you have given me, because they are yours. All mine are yours and all yours are mine and I am glorified in them. … Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.”
“This, beloved, is the way in which we found our salvation, Jesus Christ, the High Priest who offers our gifts, the patron and helper in our weakness (Heb 10:20; 7:27; 4:15). I t is through Him, that we look straight at the heavens above. Through Him, we see mirrored, God’s faultless and transcendent countenance. Through Him, the eyes of our heart were opened. Through Him, our unintelligent and darkened mind shoots up into the light. Through Him, the Master was pleased to let us taste the knowledge that never fades,”
St Pope Clement I (c 35 – c 99)
“The mark of Christ’s sheep is their willingness to hear and obey, just as disobedience is the mark of those who are not His. We take the word ‘hear’ to imply obedience to what has been said.”
St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Father and Doctor of the Church
“Pray in the spirit and sentiment of love, in which the royal prophet said to Him, ‘Thou, O Lord, are my portion.’ Let others choose to themselves, portions among creatures, for my part, You are my portion, You alone I have chosen for my whole inheritance.”
St Augustine of Canterbury (Died c 605)
And if by chance you do not know Where to go in quest of Me, Do not go far My Face to see, Searching everywhere high and low, But in yourself must seek for Me.
For, soul, in you I am confined, You are My dwelling and My home; And if one day I chance to find Fast-closed the portals of your mind I ask for entrance when I come.
Oh, do not seek me far away, For, if you would attain to Me, You only need My Name to say And I’ll be there, without delay. Look in yourself to seek for Me!”
One Minute Reflection – 6 July – “Month of the Precious Blood” – Readings: Genesis 32: 23-33, Psalms 17: 1b, 2-3, 6-7ab, 8b and 15, Matthew 9: 32-38 and the Memorial of St Maria Goretti
“And seeing the multitudes, he had compassion on them because they were distressed and living like sheep without a shepherd.” – Matthew 9:36
REFLECTION – “Look around you, my brethren, on every side … Look around, I say and answer why it is that there is so much change, so much strife, so many parties and sects, so many creeds? because men are dissatisfied and restless; and why restless, with everyone his psalm, his doctrine, his tongue, his revelation, his interpretation? they are restless because they have not found … It has not yet brought them into the Presence of Christ, in which “is fulness of joy” and “pleasure for evermore” (Ps 16:11).
Had they been fed with the bread of life (Jn 6:35) and tasted of the honeycomb, their eyes, like Jonathan’s (1 Sam 14:27), had been enlightened, to acknowledge the Saviour of men but having no such real apprehension of things unseen, they have still to seek and are at the mercy of every rumour from without.
O sad and pitiable spectacle, when the people of Christ wander on the hills as “sheep which have no shepherd;” and instead of seeking Him in His ancient haunts and His appointed home, busy themselves in human schemes, follow strange guides, are taken captive by new opinions, become the sport of chance, or of the humour of the hour, or the victims of self-will, are full of anxiety and perplexity,and jealousy and alarm, “tossed to and fro, and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness whereby they lie in wait to deceive;” (Eph 4:14) —and all because, they do not seek the “one body” and the “one Spirit,” and the “one hope of their calling,” the “one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all,” (Eph 4:5-6) and “find rest for their souls” (Mt 11:29)! – St John Henry Newman (1801-1890) Cardinal, Founder of the Oratory in England, Theologian, Writer, Poet, Hymnist – Sermon “Invisible Presence of Christ” Sermons on Subjects of the Day, no 21
PRAYER – True Light of the world, Lord Jesus Christ, as You enlighten all men for their salvation, give us grace, we pray, to herald Your coming, by preparing Your ways of justice and of peace. We lift our hearts and eyes in prayer and beg of You that we may always offer You the souls of those in need of You. And may the prayers of Bl At Maria Goretti, strengthen us on our journey. Who live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.
Our Morning Offering – 6 July – “Month of the Precious Blood”
An Old Morning Prayer – Excerpt From The Blossoms of the Cross — 1894 The Sisters of St Joseph
I rise In God’s strength, In God’s power, In the Agony of Christ, In the Cross of Christ, In Christ’s Precious Blood, These will sustain me against my enemies, visible and invisible. I rise in the blessing of Christ which my dearest Jesus left to the whole world. Protect me, All-Holy Trinity, God the Father, Who created me, God, the Son, Who redeemed me in His Precious Blood, God, the Holy Ghost, Who sanctified me in Holy Baptism. God, the Father, I give myself to Thee! God, the Son, I commend myself to Thee! God, the Holy Ghost, teach me! Mary, Mother of God, assist me! All you Saints of God, pray for me! All you Holy Angels, protect me! The Cross of Christ preserve me! Amen
Saint of the Day – 6 July – Saint Dominica of Campania (c 287-303) Virgin Martyr. Born in c 287 in Tropea, Calabria, Italy and died in the first attempt by being thrown to wild animals who refused to harm her. Thereafter, she was beheaded on 6 July 303, making her between 15 and 16 years old. Patronages – Camaldoli, Italy, Caraffa di Catanzaro, Italy, Mandanici, Italy, Scorrano, Italy, Torre di Ruggiero, Italy, Tremestieri, Italy, Tropea, Italy, in Nicomedia, Bithynia (in modern Turkey). Also known as – Dominica of Tropea, Ciriaca.
The Roman Martyrology states of her today: “In Campania, St Dominica, Virgin and Martyr, in the time of the Emperor Diocletian. For having destroyed idols, she was condemned to the beasts but being uninjured by them. she was beheaded and departed for Heaven. Her body is kept with great veneration at Tropea, in Calabria.”
Almost nothing more is known of Dominica except that she was the daughter of Christian parents, Doroteo and Arsenia.
The Sacred Congregation of Rites granted a special Mass in her honour to Tropea, Calabria, Italy on 14 May 1672.
Notre-Dame d’Iron / Our Lady of Iron, Dunois, France (1631) – 16 July:
Saint-Sulpice-le-Dunois is a small Village located near the centre of France. Once home to Our Lady of Iron, it is situated near the larger Town of Blois, its population was only 517 citizens in the year 2007, which was a decrease from the 636 citizens who had lived there in 1999. It was in the Chapel of this tiny Village of Saint-Sulpice-le-Dunois, in the year 1631, that our story takes place involving Our Lady of Iron.
There was a young French couple living in the village at that time, who felt themselves singularly blessed. Were they not fortunate? They took pleasure in their youth and enjoyed good health, had happy employment,lived in a modest home and they had recently been blessed with a fine baby whom they felt was as sweet as the Babe of Bethlehem. Thus they mused on their way home together after early morning Mass one day. As soon as they entered their home, Pierre hurried to the cradle to gaze lovingly at his infant son. The child must have been restless, he thought, as there was evidence that he had struggled with the bedclothes which were tossed about and tangled strangely about the infant. Pierre reached in and lifted his son to hold him in his arms, only to find that the tiny figure was rigid and cold. Stunned, he called for his wife disbelieving, for it seemed their baby was dead! Pierre’s thoughts turned to Our Blessed Mother and then to the Statue of Our Lady of Iron at the Parish Church. They had spent many hours there in the past praying for her assistance and her help had never failed them. They determined to take their baby there instantly! Surely, Mary would not fail them in this time of dire need. Together they entered the Church, and sadly laid the lifeless form at the feet of the Statue of Our Lady of Iron. As they began to pray for her intercession, they dedicated their baby to the Blessed Virgin Mary. In that very instant, the child who had been smothered by struggling in its cradle, cried out and came back to life. News of the miracle spread far and wide and the fame of Our Lady of Iron was assured.
Bl Angela of Bohemia Bl Augustin-Joseph Desgardin Bl Christopher Solino St Cyril of Thessaloniki St Dominica of Campania (c 287-303) Virgin Martyr St Gervais St Giusto of Condat St Goar of Aquitaine St Godelieve
St Saxburgh of Ely St Sisoes the Great Bl Suzanne Agathe de Loye St Thomas Alfield St Tranquillinus of Rome — Martyrs of Campania – 23 saints: A group of 23 Christians arrested, tortured and then beheaded together in the later 3rd century by order of governor Rictiovarus in the persecutions of Diocletian. The names that have come down to us are – Antoninus, Arnosus, Capicus, Cutonius, Diodorus, Dion, Isidore, Lucia, Lucian, Rexius, Satyrus and Severinus.
Martyrs of Fiesole – 5 saints: Five Christians martyred together in the persecutions of emperor Domitian – Carissimus, Crescentius, Dulcissimus, Marchisianus and Romulus. c 90 near Fiesole, Italy.