Thought for the Day – 6 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971) (Apologies for the late post – the usual South African problem to blame – Power Cuts! 🙄)
Pride is Robbery!
“When we are proud, we steal from God! Everything which we are and have, both in the natural and supernatural order, is a gift from God. Therefore, when we claim the credit for ourselves, we take from Him that which really belongs to Him. “What hast thou that thou hast not received.” asks St Paul. “And if thou has received it, why do thou boast as if thou had not received it?” (1 Cor 4:7).
Pride is a very grave sin, therefore. According to Sacred Scripture, “pride is the reservoir of sin, a source which runs over with vice” (Ecclus 10:15). “The beginning of pride,” says the same Book of Ecclsiasticus, “is man’s stubbornness in withdrawing his heart from his Maker” (10:14). It is worth meditating on these words, for because of this sin “God sends unheard-of afflictions and brings men to utter ruin” (Ecclus 10:15). As St Augustine points out, the first sin was one of pride and it changed an angel into a demon. (In Ps 18:15).
When we reflect on the matter, it becomes quite clear, that pride is the basis of every sin (Ibid). When man disobeys the law of God, he prefers sin to God. Sin, therefore, is always an act of rebellion against God. It is as if we were to say to Him: “I prefer to obey my own caprice, rather than to obey Your will.” In this sense, it is true to state, that every sin is founded on pride and involves a turning away from God. But, when we turn away from our Creator and Redeemer, where are we to go? “Lord,” let us say with St Peter, “to whom shall we go? Thou has the words of everlasting life …” (Jn 6:69).”
Quote/s of the Day – 7 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary” – Readings: Colossians 1: 24 – 2: 3; Psalm 62: 6-7,9; Luke 6:6-11
“Stretch forth your hand.”
“While the withered hand was restored, the withered minds of the onlookers were not. … Are you debating what you will do? Worship Him as God. Worship the Wonder-worker. Worship One who worked good things on behalf of another.”
St Athansius (297-373) Father and Doctor of the Church
“And I became their abomination because there was no jealousy in me. Because I continually did good to every man I was hated. And they surrounded me like mad dogs (Ps 22:17) those, who in stupidity, attack their masters. Because their mind is depraved and their sense is perverted.”
Odes of Solomon (Hebrew Christian text from the beginning of the 2nd century) No 28
“Jealousy has no limit; it is an evil that continually endures and a sin, without end. The lies of jealousy burn hotter in proportion to the increasing success of the person who is envied.”
St Cyprian of Carthage (c 200- c 258) Bishop, Martyr, Father of the Church
“ It is ever thus, the more you envy your brother, the greater good you confer upon him. God, who sees all, takes the cause of the innocent in hand and, irritated by the injury you inflict, deigns to raise up him whom you wish to lower and will punish you to the full extent of your crime.”
St John Chrysostom (347-407) Father & Doctor of the Church
“To harbour no envy, no anger, no resentment against an offender is still not to have charity for him. It is possible, without any charity, to avoid rendering evil for evil. But to render, spontaneously, good for evil – such belongs to a perfect spiritual love.”
St Maximus the Confessor (c 580-662) Father of the Church
“The soul that loves Jesus Christ does not envy the great ones of this world but only those, who are greater lovers of Jesus Christ.”
St Alphonsus Maria de Liguori (1696-1787) Most Zealous Doctor of the Church
One Minute Reflection – 7 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary” – Readings: Colossians 1: 24 – 2: 3; Psalm 62: 6-7,9; Luke 6:6-11
“On another Sabbath, he entered the synagogue and was teaching and there was a man whose right hand was withered. ” – Luke 6:6
REFLECTION – “The miracle sometimes converts to faith those who had disbelieved the word but the Pharisees watched Him to see if He would heal on the Sabbath. The nature of an envious person is such, that he makes the praises of others food for his own disease and is wickedly maddened by their reputation. Once more He spoke thus; “I ask you, is it lawful to do good on the Sabbath rather than to do evil, to save life rather than to destroy it?” And why did He do this? Perhaps it might be to move the cruel and unpitying Pharisee to compassion. The man’s malady [his withered hand] perhaps might shame them and persuade them to dispel the flames of their envy.
This question is most wise indeed and a most suitable statement to meet their folly. If it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath and nothing prevents the sick being pitied by God, cease picking up opportunities for fault-finding against Christ and bringing down on your own head, the sentence which the Father has decreed against those who dishonour the Son. You have heard the Father where He says of the Son by the voice of David, “I will crush his foes before him and strike down those who hate him.” But, if it is not lawful to do good on the Sabbath and the law forbids the saving of life, you have made yourself an accuser of the law.” – St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Father and Doctor of the Church. Doctor of the Incarnation (Known a\s the Pillar of Faith) – (Commentary on Luke, Homily 23)
PRAYER – God of mercy and love, You offer all peoples the dignity of sharing in your life. Rule over our hearts and bodies this day. Sanctify us and guide our every thought, word and deed, my our hands be held out to our neighbour in imitation of Your love and mercy. By the intercession of Mary the Sorrowful Mother of Our Lord Jesus Christ and our Mother, strengthen us to love each other as brothers and sisters. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever amen.
Our Morning Offering – 6 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary”
The Day is Filled with Splendour Benedictine Nuns of Stanbrook Abbey
The day is filled with splendour When God brings light from light, And all renewed creation Rejoices in His sight. — The Father gives His children The wonder of the world In which His power and glory Like banners are unfurled. — With every living creature, Awaking with the day, We turn to God our Father, Lift up our hearts and pray: — O Father, Son and Spirit, Your grace and mercy send, That we may live to praise You Today and to the end. Amen
The Day is Filled with Splendour, is a hymn written by the Benedictine Nuns of Stanbrook Abbey. It is sung during Morning Prayer in the Divine Office. It is set to the hymn tune: Paderborn, first published in the Katholische Kirchengesänge of 1616. Psalter Week 3.
Saint of the Day – 6 September – Saint Frontiniano of Alba (Died 311) Deacon Martyr, miracle-worker. Born in Carcassone, France and died by being beheaded on 23 October 311 on the road outside the city walls of Alba Pompeia, Piedmont, Italy near the City cemetery. Additional Memorials – 23 October (dies natalis), 27 April (translation of relics in the Diocese of Alba, Italy). Patronages – sick children, Alba, Italy, Sinio, Italy. Also known as – Frontinianus.
The events of the life of Frontiniano are not fully documented historically and are known through the contents of an ancient liturgical officiation.
According to the story reported in the readings, Frontiniano, who lived in the fourth century, was originally from the French town of Carcassonne and, after completing his studies, was Ordained a Deacon.
With a companion named Cassiano, he embarked on a journey to Rome to make a pilgrimage to the tombs of the Apostles, several miracles occurred along the way. Frontiniano gave sight to a blind man, speech to a mute, crossed the Rhone on a wreck that miraculously re-emerged from the waters and in Alba, Piedmont, on the way back, he droves the devil away from a noble girl of the City. The young woman’s parents, grateful for the miracle worked in their favour, converted to Christianity and were baptised by the Saint.
But the Prefect of the City had Frontiniano arrested and sentenced him to be beheaded, a sentence carried out outside the City walls, on 23 October 311.
On the site of the martyrdom, along the road to Roddi near a cemetery, a famous Benedictine Abbey was built. it was dedicated to the Saint. The Abbey also kept the relics of the titular saint which, during the fifteenth century, were moved to the Cathedral inside the walls by the Bishop Alerino.
In the pastoral visits of the sixteenth century, the custom is still remembered, by the women of Alba, to bring the sick children to the Church of the Saint, after having walked its perimeter nine times, they entered and placed the children on the steps of the Altar where the remains of the Saint were once kept and implored his help. This practice, looked upon with suspicion by the ecclesiastical authorities for fear that it would degenerate into superstition, was certainly of ancient origin, even if it is not possible to know why the Saint was considered a special protector of children.
St Frontiniano, besides being one of the Patron Saints of Alba, is also the Patron Saint of Sinio. 6 September is the official Memorial and is the day on which his name is reported in the Acta Sanctorum.
Notre-Dame de la Fontaine / Our Lady of the Fountain, Valenciennes, France (1008) – 6 September:
Valenciennes is a City in northern France on the Scheldt River and Our Lady of the Fountain was located half a league from the City in the year 1008. According to tradition, there was a terrible famine that preceded the Plague in that fateful year of 1008. It is recorded that the City of Valenciennes was so ravaged by the plague that nearly 8,000 people died in only a few days, so that the chronicles of the time tell us that it seemed “the dead outnumber the living.” The people grieved profoundly at the spectacle of death which constantly surrounded them,and having no other recourse, went in great crowds to their Churches to take refuge at the feet of Our Mother of Mercy and beg for her intercession. A holy hermit named Bertholin, who lived nearby Our Lady of the Fountain, was touched by the misfortune of his brothers and redoubled his austerities and prayers. He prayed for the people of Valenciennes, saying, “O Mary! Rescue these afflicted who have cried out to you! Will you let this people die who have called upon you for rescue and who confide their cares to you? Will you be invoked in vain?” The Blessed Virgin appeared to the hermit Bertholin while he was fervently praying on the night of the 5th of September. The pious hermit was suddenly dazzled by the brilliance of a light purer than the sun, while at the same time the Mother of Mercy appeared to him with an air of kindness. She commanded Bertholin to tell the inhabitants to fast on the following day and then pass the night in prayer to bring an end to the Plague. “Go to my people of Valenciennes. On the eve of my nativity they will see the guarantee of protection that I want to give them.”
The response was overwhelming. The people of Valenciennes did as they were told,and on the eve of the Nativity, the 7th of September, the people of Valenciennes stood upon the ramparts and towers of the City excitedly awaiting the fulfilment of the heavenly promise. Their confidence was not in vain, for suddenly the night seemed to turn into day and they witnessed the Queen of Heaven descending to earth in majesty, sparkling like a light of heaven, brighter than the sun. Accompanied by a host of Angels, Our Lady seemed to gird the town all round with a cord. Nothing can convey the feelings of joy and devotion with which the people of Valenciennes were seized at this sight. At one point they all bowed and asked the Blessed Virgin’s blessing. Their Heavenly Mother did indeed bless them and those who were sick recovered their health and the inhabitants of Valenciennes have been forever freed from the plague. The Blessed Virgin instructed the hermit to tell the people that they were to make a solemn procession, and then to do so every year. The people were eager to fulfill this desire of their Heavenly Mother and left the City singing praises to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Since that time the procession of Our Lady of Saint-Cordon, or the Tour of the Holy Cordon, takes place every year, always along the same route where the holy cord had been placed. The cord of the Blessed Virgin was locked up in a Shrine at a beautiful Gothic Church, Notre-Dame-la-Grande. This cord, the Abbot Orsini related, was still preserved at Valenciennes while he was alive. That is no longer the case, as it disappeared during the Terror that was the French Revolution. The Church was sold at auction and then razed to the ground, and the reliquary sent to the mint. Of the Holy Cord nothing is now known, although no one witnessed its destruction when it disappeared in the year 1793.
St Arator of Verdun St Augebert of Champagne St Augustine of Sens St Beata of Sens St Bega
St Cagnoald St Consolata of Reggio Emilia St Cottidus of Cappadocia
St Eleutherius the Abbot (Died c 585) Monk and Abbot. A wonderful simplicity and spirit of compunction were the distinguishing virtues of this holy sixth century Abbot. His Lifestory: ttps://anastpaul.com/2020/09/06/saint-of-the-day-saint-eleutherius-the-abbot-at-spoleto-died-c-585/
St Eugene of Cappadocia St Eve of Dreux St Faustus of Alexandria St Faustus of Syracuse St Felix of Champagne St Frontiniano of Alba (Died 311) Deacon Martyr St Gondulphus of Metz St Imperia St Liberato of Loro Piceno St Macarius of Alexandria St Maccallin of Lusk
St Mansuetus of Toul St Onesiphorus St Petronius of Verona St Sanctian of Sens St Zacharius the Prophet — Martyrs of Africa – 6 saints: There were thousands of Christians exiled, tortured and martyred in the late 5th century by the Arian King Hunneric. Six of them, all bishops, are remembered today; however, we really know nothing about them except their names and their deaths for the faith – Donatian, Fusculus, Germanus, Laetus, Mansuetus and Praesidius.
Martyred in the Spanish Civil War: • Blessed Diego Llorca Llopis • Blessed Felipe Llamas Barrero • Blessed Pascual Torres Lloret • Blessed Vidal Ruiz Vallejo