Thought for the Day – 26 November – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Glory of God
“The whole of creation manifests the glory of God. The grass on the field, the trees of the forest, the insects and birds of the air, the creatures on the earth and in the sea, the stars in the sky – they all speak to us of the power and beauty of the Creator. You also were created by and for God, Who is the beginning and end of all things. In all thoughts, actions and affections, therefore, you should seek the Glory of God. God, indeed, has no need of your small contribution to enhance His Glory. His Glory is complete and perfect in Himself, in Heaven and in Hell, God does not need you but you need God. It is your strict obligation, not only to proclaim the Glory of God but, also to work for its triumph in yourself and in all things.
The man who loves God above all things, seeks only His Glory. The man who loves himself more than he loves God, however, seeks his own petty worldly glorification and strays away from the main road of life, which should lead him towards God.”
Quote/s of the Day – 26 November – The Memorial of St Leonard of Port Maurice OFM (1676-1751)
“I believe, that were it not for the Holy Mass, at this moment, the world would be in the abyss, unable to bear up, under the mighty load of its iniquities. Mass is the potent prop that hold the world on its base.”
“What graces, gifts and virtues the Holy Mass calls down!”
“Oh Most Sacred Name, Name of peace, Balsam of life, which is the centre of all the sighs, of the most fervent lovers of Jesus. The Sign of those who truly love Jesus is to bear Jesus imprinted in the heart and to name often and with devotion, the Most Holy Name of Jesus.”
One Minute Reflection – 26 November – “Month of the Holy Souls in Purgatory” – Readings: Daniel 7: 2-14; Daniel 3: 75-81; Luke 21: 29-33 – The Memorial of St Sylvester Gozzolini OSB Silv. (1177– 1267)
“Consider the fig tree” – Luke 21:29
REFLECTION – “The earth that we see does not satisfy us; it is but a beginning; it is but a promise of something beyond it; even when it is gayest, with all its blossoms on and shows most touchingly what lies hid in it, yet it is not enough. We know much more lies hid in it than we see. A world of Saints and Angels, a glorious world, the palace of God, the mountain of the Lord of Hosts, the heavenly Jerusalem, the throne of God and Christ, all these wonders, everlasting, all-precious, mysterious, and incomprehensible, lie hid in what we see. What we see is the outward shell of an eternal Kingdom and on that Kingdom we fix the eyes of our faith.
Shine forth, O Lord, as when, on Thy Nativity, Thine Angels visited the shepherds; let Thy glory blossom forth, as bloom and foliage on the tree,; change with Thy mighty power this visible world into that divine world, which, as yet we see not, destroy what we see, that it may pass and be transformed into what we believe. Bright as is the sun and the sky and the clouds; green as are the leaves and the fields; sweet as is the singing of the birds – we know that they are not all and we will not take up with a part, for the whole. They proceed from a centre of Love and Goodness, which is God Himself but they are not His Fullness; they speak of Heaven but they are not Heaven; they are but as stray beams and dim reflections of His Image; they are but crumbs from the table!” – St John Henry Newman C.O. (1801-1890),Priest, Theologian (The Invisible World » PPS, vol. 4, no.13)
PRAYER – Lord God, creator of all Light and creator of all good, grant that we may look up to You always and know that by Your Light and your goodness we are safe in this world of corruption. May the Light of our Lord Jesus, make the path He has set out bright and clear and may the prayers of St Sylvester Gozzolini be a help in our struggle. Lead us, Lord, in Your kindness and mercy to our heavenly home. We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.
Our Morning Offering – 26 November – The Memorial of St Leonard of Port Maurice OFM (1676-1751)
Forgive Me, Good Jesus By St Leonard of Port Maurice (1676-1751)
Lord, I confess that up until now I have not lived as a Christian. I am not worthy to be numbered among Your elect. I recognise that I deserve to be damned but Your mercy is great and, full of confidence in Your grace, I say to You that I wish to save my soul, even if I have to sacrifice my fortune, my honour, my very life, as long as I am saved. If I have been unfaithful up to now, I repent, I deplore, I detest my infidelity, I ask You humbly to forgive me. Forgive me, good Jesus and strengthen me, that I may be saved. I ask You not for wealth, honour or prosperity, I ask You for one thing only, to save my soul. Amen
Saint of the Day – 26 November – Saint Sylvester Gozzolini OSB Silv. (1177– 1267) Priest, Abbot, Founder of the Silvestrini Congration, Mystic, gifted with the charism of prophecy and miracles, but also subject to violent attacks by the devil. Born in 1177 in Osimo, Marche, Italy and died on 26 November 1267 at Monte Fano, Fabriano, Italy of natural causes aged 90. Also known as – Silvestro, Sylvester of Osimo.
Sylvester was born of a noble family at Osimo in the Marches of Ancona and in his boyhood was remarkable for his love of study and his good conduct. As a youth, he was sent by his father to Bologna to study jurisprudence but was admonished by God to devote himself to sacred learning. Thus he abandoned the study of law for that of theology and Holy Scripture, giving long hours daily to prayer. This incited his father to anger, which Sylvester patiently endured when his father would not speak to him for ten years. On account of his remarkable virtue, the Canons of Osimo elected him an honorary member of their chapter, in which position he benefited the people by his prayers, his example and his sermons.
While assisting at the funeral of a nobleman, his relative, who had been unusually handsome, he looked into the open coffin and seeing the corpse all deformed, said to himself: “What this man was, I am now; what he is now, I shall be hereafter.“ As soon as the funeral was over, reading these words of our Lord: “If any one will come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me,” he retired into solitude in order to attain greater perfection.
There he gave himself up to watching, prayer and fasting, often eating nothing but raw herbs. The better to conceal himself from men he frequently changed his place of abode;and at length settled at Monte Fano, which, though near to Fabriano, was at that time, a desert. There he built a Church in honour of the most holy father St Benedict and founded the Congregation of Sylvestrians, under the Rule and Habit shown him by St.Benedict in vision.
Satan, roused to envy, strove in many ways to terrify his Monks, making assaults by night at the Monastery gates. But the man of God repressed the enemy’s attacks with such vigour, that the Monks, recognising their father’s sanctity, were more and more confirmed in their holy purpose.
Sylvester was remarkable for the spirit of prophecy and other gifts, which he guarded by deep humility. This so stirred up the devil’s envy that he cast the saint headlong down the oratory stairs and well nigh killed him but the blessed Virgin at once graciously restored him to health. In gratitude for this benefit, Sylvester showed her the tenderest unfailing piety to the end of his life.
In 1247 he obtained from Pope Innocent IV, at Lyons, a Bull confirming his Order and before his death, founded a number of Monasteries.
He died at the age of ninety years, renowned for sanctity and miracles in1267. He was Beatified in1269 by Pope Clement IV who also added him to the Martyrology) and Canonised in 1598 by Pope Clement VIII. His body was disinterred and placed in a Shrine (1275-85) and is still honoured in the Church of Monte Fano. In 1890, the Sovereign Pontiff Leo XIII, extended his Office and Mass to the universal Church, with the rank of Double (third-class feast in the 1960 reform of Pope John XXIII), therefore, reducing today’s memorial to the status of a commemoration, as well as that of Saint Peter of Alexandria, who shares today as his Feast. In 1970, both these were removed altogether and relegated to the local calendars. These wonderful Saints were packed away in dark storage where no-one ever venerates or prays to them for their holy intercession.., but you and I will pray the Collect below and remember .him ..
Collect: May the intercession, O Lord, of blessed Sylvester, the Abbot, recommend us to Thee; that what we cannot hope for through any merits of our own, we may obtain by his prayers. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen
Onze-Lieve-Vrouw van Westrozebeke / Our Lady of Westrozebeke, Staden, West Flanders, Belgium (1482) – 26 November, Third Sunday of June:
On 26 November 1382, opposing armies camped around the Village of Westrozebeke: rebels recently victorious in Ghent vs. Louis II, King of Flanders and French troops brought in to help him. The residents congregated at a forest Chapel to beg the Virgin’s help. At the battle the next day, the rebels fled after their leader was killed. Afterward, a red silk thread encircling the area the King’s forces had occupied, with seven knots equally spaced along it and crosses where the ends met, was discovered – this was interpreted as a sign of the Virgin’s protection. The silk thread was soon distributed for relics and in its place, eight Chapels were built – seven to honour each of Mary’s Sorrows, where the knots had lain and a larger one to honour the Holy Cross. In 1384, Louis II’s son-in-law Philip II of Burgundy, instituted an annual procession and Mass in thanksgiving for the victory. Many pilgrims sought out the circuit of eight Chapels and the help of Our Lady of Roosebeke (“rosy stream“), especially sufferers from the streptococcal skin infection erysipelas, known as St Anthony’s fire in English but as wondroos (“rosy wound“) in Dutch. And they continued to frequent the old forest Chapel of Our Lady of the Fountain, near a spring with waters believed to cure eye diseases. The annual pilgrimage continued for centuries. The faithful from the Provincial Capital of Bruges, brought new clothes for Our Lady’s Statue, while those from Menen, to the south, came in thanksgiving for their deliverance from an epidemic in the early 1500s. In 1566, iconoclasts destroyed the Statue. Believers installed a new one in 1584. During World War I, another miracle came to light. In 1916, when Germans torpedoed the ferry “Sussex” as it crossed the English Channel toward France, sailors from Westrozebeke prayed to Our Lady and were spared. But their Village was not so fortunate: it was destroyed during the war. Our Lady’s beloved Statue, which had been moved away for safekeeping, returned afterwards and was installed in the new Church of St Bavo on 13 June1924.
Now part of the Municipality of Staden, Westrozebeke holds a 10-day festival in July, starting on the third Sunday, when firemen throw roses from the Church tower. The religious portion culminates in Our Lady’s Pageant on the following Saturday, with a procession and Mass in St Bavo’s Church, where roses encircle the Statue of Our Lady.
Bl Albert of Haigerloch St Alypius Stylites St Amator of Autun St Basolus of Verzy St Bellinus of Padua St Bertger of Herzfeld St Conrad of Constance St Ðaminh Nguyen Van Xuyên Bl Delphine of Glandèves St Egelwine of Athelney
St Magnance of Ste-Magnance St Marcellus of Nicomedia Bl Marmaduke Bowes St Martin of Arades St Nicon of Sparta Bl Pontius of Faucigny St Sabaudus of Trier St Siricius, Pope St Stylianus St Sylvester Gozzolini OSB Silv. (1177– 1267) Priest, Abbot, Founder St Tôma Ðinh Viet Du St Vacz — Martyrs of Alexandria – 7+ saints: A group of approximately 650 Christian priests, bishops and laity martyred together in the persecution of Maximian Galerius. We have the names and a few details only seven of them – Ammonius, Didius, Faustus, Hesychius, Pachomius, Phileas and Theodore. The were born in Egypt and were martyred there in c 311 in Alexandria, Egypt.
Martyrs of Capua – 7 saints: A group of seven Christians martyred together. The only details about them to survive are the names – Ammonius, Cassianus, Felicissimus, Nicander, Romana, Saturnin and Serenus. They were martyred in Capua, Campania, Italy, date unknown.
Martyrs of Nicomedia – 6 saints: A group of six orthodox Christians martyred by Arians. Few details have survived except their names – Marcellus, Melisus, Numerius, Peter, Serenusa and Victorinus. Martyred in 349 in Nicomedia, Bithynia, Asia Minor (modern Izmit, Turkey).