Let us begin: In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
O God, Who by the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, did prepare a worthy dwelling place for Your Son, we beseech You that, as by the foreseen death of this, Your Son, You did preserve Her from all stain, so too You would permit us, purified through Her intercession, to come unto You. Through the same Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. Amen
O Mary, Mother of God, endowed in your glorious Immaculate Conception with the fullness of grace; unique among women, in that you are both mother and virgin; Mother of Christ and Virgin of Christ, we ask you to look down with a tender heart from your throne and listen to our prayers as we earnestly ask, that you obtain for us the favour for which we now plead… ………………………………….. (State your intention here… ) O Mary of the Immaculate Conception, Mother of Christ, you had influence with your Divine Son while upon this earth; you have the same influence now in Heaven. Pray for us and obtain for us from him the granting of our petition if it be the Divine Will. Amen
Say the: Our Father… the: Hail Mary… the: Glory Be…
Thought for the Day – 2 December – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Thirst for Justice
“Jesus commands us, in the Beatitudes, to seek justice, that is perfection in the fulfilment of our obligations to God, to ourselves and, to our neighbour. He commands us, to hunger and thirst for this justice, which is identical to holiness.
When Christ tells us to hunger and thirst for justice, He imposes on us, the obligation of doing our very best to acquire the virtue of Christian justice, which is the sythesis of all the virtues. We must be aware, therefore, of laziness, apathy, tepidity, or mediocrity, for our advance in spiritual perfection, must be continuous. There must be no hesitation or backsliding. The high target which God has set for us, demands hard work and boundless generosity on our part. Jesus Christ loved us so much that He gave Himself entirely for us and shed His Precious Blood to the last drop, for our Redemption. How can we possibly be niggardly or half-hearted in our relatioas with Him?
Whenever God’s cause is at stake, whether in our efforts to achieve our own spiritual perfection or in the fulfilment of our obligations towards our neighbour, we should never refuse anything but, should display absolute dedication to God and to our fellowman. “Let us hunger,” said St Catherine of Siena, “for God’s honour and for the salvation of souls” (Vrev di perfezioe, p81). The hunger and thirst for justice, nourished by the love of God and of our neighbour, should exclude all mediocrity and selfishness from our lives. It should urge us on, as it did the Saints, towards the highest pinnacles of sanctity.”
Quote/s of the Day – 2 December – Thursday of the First week of Advent – Readings: Isaiah 26: 1-6; Psalm 118: 1 and 8-9, 19-21, 25-27; Matthew 7: 21, 24-27
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven but only the one, who does the will of my Father in heaven.”
“On each occasion I say: ‘Lord, Thy will be done! It’s not what this, or that one, wants but, what You want me to do.’ This is my fortress, this is my firm rock, this is my sure support.”
St John Chrysostom (347-407) Father and Doctor of the Church
“He who is his own master is a scholar under a fool.”
St Bernard (1090-1153) Mellifluous Doctor
“Obedience unites us so closely to God that, in a way, it transforms us into Him, so that we have no other will but His. If obedience is lacking, even prayer cannot be pleasing to God.”
St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) Doctor Angelicus Doctor Communis
“Love Him, then, keep Him as a friend. He will not leave you as others do, or let you suffer lasting death. Sometime, whether you will or not, you will have to part with everything. Cling, therefore, to Jesus in life and death, trust yourself to the glory of Him, Who alone can help you when all others fail.“
One Minute Reflection – 2 December – Thursday of the First week of Advent – Readings: Isaiah 26: 1-6; Psalm 118: 1 and 8-9, 19-21, 25-27; Matthew 7: 21, 24-27
“Therefore, whosoever hears these words of mine and does them, I will liken him unto a wise man, who built his house upon a rock and the rain descended and the floods came and the winds blew and beat upon that house and it fell not, for it was founded upon a rock.…” Matthew 7:24
REFLECTION – “If anyone will piously and soberly consider the sermon which our Lord Jesus spoke on the mount, as we read it in the Gospel according to Matthew, I think that he will find in it, so far as regards the highest morals, a perfect standard of the Christian life and this, we do not rashly venture to promise but gather it from the very words of the Lord Himself. For the sermon itself is brought to a close in such a way, that it is clear there are in it all the precepts which go to mould the life. … He has sufficiently indicated, as I think, that these sayings which He uttered on the mount, so perfectly guide the life of those who may be willing to live according to them, that they may justly be compared to one building upon a rock.”…St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, Father and Doctor of the Church (On the Sermon on the Mount)
PRAYER – Take pity on our distress, Lord God; show us Your love. May the coming of Your Son, strengthen us and cleanse us from all trace of sin. May we then follow His Words in complete obedience and fulfil Your Holy Will. And may the Blessed Virgin, the Mother of Our Lord and our Mother, help us on the way. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, our Master in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God with You now and forever, amen.
Dear Saviour, haste! Come, come to earth. Dispel the night and show Your Face And bid us hail the Dawn of grace. O come, Divine Messiah, The world in silence waits the day When hope shall sing its triumph, And sadness flee away. Amen
This is the Refrain from a beautiful Advent Hymn by Abbé Simon-Joseph Pellegrin, a French Cluniac Monk, Poet, Composer and Playwright.
Saint of the Day – 2 December – Saint Athanasius of the Caves (Died c 1176) Monk, Hermit, miracle-worker and healer. Also known as – Athanasius of Macedonia, Athanasius of the Resurrection, Athanasius of Kiev, Afanasij of …
Athanasius was grievously ill for a long time. When he died, the Monks prepared him for burial. However, they all saw the dead man alive. He was sitting up and weeping. To all their questions he replied only: “Seek salvation, obey the Abbot in everything, repent each hour and pray to our Lord Jesus Christ, to His All-Pure Mother and to Saints Anthony and Theodosius, to allow you to end your life here. Do not ask me anything else, for I must pray.”
After this he lived for twelve years longer in solitude in a cave. During that time he spoke not a word to anyone. He wept day and night and partook of a little bread and water only every other day. Just before his death, he assembled the Monks and repeated his earlier words to them, and then he peacefully departed unto the Lord (in about the year 1176).
The Monk Babylas, who had suffered illness and an infirmity of the legs for many years, was healed at his relics. “As I lay there,” he told the brethren, “I cried out in pain. Suddenly, Saint Athanasius appeared to me and said, ‘Come to me, and I shall heal you.’ I wanted to ask him how and when he had returned her, but he became invisible. I believed his words and asked to be taken to his relics. And indeed, I have been healed.” Saint Athanasius was buried in the Antoniev Cave.
Our Lady of Didinia, Cappadocia, Turkey (363) – 2 December:
The Abbot Orsini wrote: “Our Lady of Didinia is in Cappadocia. It was before this Shrine that Saint Basil had begged the Blessed Virgin to remedy the disorders caused by Julian the Apostate. The Saint was granted a vision from Mary, which foretold the death of the emperor.”
The godless Emperor Julian threatened the City of Caesarea with destruction because of a grudge he bore. Saint Basil the Great (329-379) gathered the frightened inhabitants on Mount Didinia, where there was a Marian Church . After three days of prayer and fasting, Basil had a vision in which he saw Mary surrounded by celestial hosts and heard her say: “Go call Mercury to me. He shall kill the blasphemer of my Son.” Saint Mercurius (Mercury) was a Saint/Martyr who died in the year 250. He was a powerful man physically but also courageous. According to tradition, he was once facing a much superior army of Berbers when St Michael the Archangel appeared to him. St Michael gave Mercurius a sword shortly before the battle, telling him: “Mercurius, servant of Jesus Christ, do not be afraid. Take this sword from my hand and fight the Berbers with it. Do not forget your God when you come back victoriously. I am Michael the Archangel, whom God sent to inform you, that you should suffer for the Lord’s Name. I shall be with you and support you until you complete your testimony. The Name of Our Lord Jesus Christ will be glorified in you.” Mercurius felt a strength and confidence granted to him from the sword of Saint Michael and was invincible in the combat. Not much later, however, he refused to burn incense before the false idols in thanksgiving for the victory and was subsequently tortured and killed for his faith in the true God. After the vision of the Mother of God, both Saint Basil and Libanius went to the Church of Saint Mercury. Upon their arrival they found that the arms of Saint Mercurius, which were usually hung there on display, were now missing. Remembering the words of the Blessed Virgin, they then went back to Mount Didinia rejoicing and spread the news of the death of the tyrant to the inhabitants. When the faithful went back to the City and the Church of Saint Mercurius, they found the lance of Mercury back in its accustomed place, although now it was wet with blood. The Emperor Julian had gone on campaign in Persia,but was forced to retreat from the region. It was later learned that he had died in that foreign land on that same night that Saint Mercurius’ weapons had disappeared. History records that he received a wound from a spear that had pierced his liver and intestines, suffering a major hemorrhage from the wound which killed him.
St Athanasius of the Caves (Died c 1176) Hermit St Avitas of Rouen
St Evasius of Brescia Bl Francisco del Valle Villar St Habakkuk the Prophet Bl Ivan Sleziuk Bl John Amero
Bleared Jan van Ruysbroec (c 1293-1382) Known as John “the Admirable,” “the Ecstatic Doctor,” “the Divine Doctor.” Priest, Hermit, Mystic, Spiritual Director and Spiritual Writer. Beatified on 1 December 1908 by Pope Pius X. About Blessed Jan: https://anastpaul.com/2018/12/02/saint-of-the-day-2-december-blessed-john-van-ruysbroeck/ St Lupus of Verona Bl Maria Angela Astorch St Nonnus of Edessa St Oderisius de Marsi St Pimenio in Rome St Pontian
Bl Robert of Matallana St Silvanus St Pope Silverio — Greek Martyrs of Rome – (9 saints): Several Greek Christians martyred in the persecutions of Valerian – Adria, Aurelia, Eusebius, Hippolytus, Marcellus, Mary Martana, Maximus, Neon and Paulina. They were martyred by various means between 254 and 259 in Rome, Italy and are buried in the Callistus catacombs, Rome.
Martyrs of Africa – (4 saints): Four Christians martyred in Africa in the persecutions of Arian Vandals – Januarius, Securus, Severus and Victorinus.