Thought for the Day – 21 December – The Silence of the Divine Infant

Thought for the Day – 21 December – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

A Christmas Novena VI
The Silence of the Divine Infant

Jesus Christ is the Eternal Word of God, made man, the infinite and substantial image of the Divine Intellect.
Nevertheless, the Divine Infant, Whom we adore in the stable at Bethlehem, is mute and silent.
The voluntary humiliation of the Son of God is such, that He, the Word of God, cannot utter a single human syllable.

By this chosen silence, however, He teaches us many things.
In the first place, He teaches us humility and self-denial.
He teaches us, moreover, to recollect ourselves in the Presence of God, so that it may be easier for us to speak with Him and for Him, to make known what He requires of us.
The silence of prayer brings forth divine consolations and inspirations to holiness,

Do we love to be silent?
It is not necessary to become hermits but, it is essential, from time to time, to place ourselves quietly in the Presence of God.
God cannot be heard through the noise and confusion of the world, whereas, He speaks clearly to the soul, which seeks the silence of prayer.
In any case, if we go about looking for the gossip and idle chatter of the world, it is almost impossible not to offend God.
“Avoid profane and empty babblings,” St Paul urges us, “for they contribute much to ungodliness” (2 Tim 2:16).
“If anyone does not offend in word,” adds St James, “he is a perfect man” (Js 3:2).
“The tongue is a little member,” he continues but, goes onto emphasis that it is capable of doing either a great deal of good or a great deal of harm.
“With it, we bless God the Father and, with it, we curse men, who have been made after the likeness of God. Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. These things, my brethren ought not to be so” (Js 3:5-10).

There are two main lessons which we should learn, therefore, from the silence of the Divine Infant.
We should learn to love recollection and, we should learn to make proper use of the gift of speech, which can be an equally powerful weapon, in the cause of good, or, in the cause of evil!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in ArchAngels and Angels, DOCTORS of the Church, ENCYCLICALS, FATHERS of the Church, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MARIAN QUOTES, MOTHER of GOD, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The HOLY NAME of MARY

Quote/s of the Day – 21 December – Our Mother

Quote/s of the Day – 21 December – O Oriens/O Radiant Dawn – “Month of the Immaculate Conception” – Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Advent, Readings: Songs 2: 8-14 or Zephaniah 3: 14-18a; Psalm 33: 2-3, 11-12, 20-21; Luke 1: 39-45

“Having confidence in you,
O Mother of God, I shall be saved.
Being under you protection,
I shall fear nothing.
With your help,
I shall give battle to my enemies
and put them to flight,
for devotion to you,
is an arm of Salvation

St John Damascene (676-749)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“O Mary,
you give assistance
to everyone endeavouring
to rise to God!

St Bridget of Sweden (c 1303 – 1373)

“At the mention of this name
[the Blessed Virgin Mary],
the Angels rejoice
and the devils tremble.
Through this invocation,
sinners obtain
grace and pardon.

St Peter Canisius SJ (1521-1397)
Doctor of the Church

“Wherefore, in the same holy bosom
of His most chaste Mother,
Christ took to Himself flesh
and united to Himself,
the spiritual Body formed
by those who were to believe in Him.
Hence Mary, carrying the Saviour
within her, may be said,
to have also carried, all those.

whose life was contained
in the life of the Saviour.
Therefore, all we,
who are united to Christ
and, as the Apostle says,
are members of His body,

of His flesh and of His bones (Eph 5:30),
have issued from the womb of Mary,
like a body united to it’s Head.”

St Pius X (1835-1914)
Pope from 1903 to 1914
Encyclical “Ad diem illum laetissimum” #10-11


One Minute Reflection – 21 December – O Oriens/O Radiant Dawn

One Minute Reflection – 21 December – O Oriens/O Radiant Dawn – “Month of the Immaculate Conception” – Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Advent, Readings: Songs 2: 8-14 or Zephaniah 3: 14-18a; Psalm 33: 2-3, 11-12, 20-21; Luke 1: 39-45

The Lord is at hand, come let us adore Him.

O Radiant Dawn,
Splendour of Eternal Light,
Sun of Justice!
Come and shine on those
who dwell in darkness
and in the shadow of death.

Elizabeth, filled with the holy Spirit, cried out in a loud voice and said, “Most blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.” – Luke 1:41-42

REFLECTION – “Everyday we devoutly greet the most Blessed Virgin Mary with the angel’s greeting and we usually add: Blessed is the fruit of thy womb. After she was greeted by the Virgin, Elizabeth added this phrase as if she were echoing the salutation of the Angel – Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb. This is the fruit of which Isaiah spoke – On that day the shoot of the Lord shall be splendid and radiant—the sublime fruit of earth. What is this fruit but the holy one of Israel, the seed of Abraham, the shoot of the Lord, the flower arising from the Root of Jesse, the fruit of life, Whom we have shared?

Blessed surely in seed and blessed in the shoot, blessed in the flower, blessed in the gift, finally blessed in thanksgiving and praise, Christ, the Seed of Abraham, was brought forth from the seed of David into the flesh.

He alone among men is found perfected in every good quality, for the Spirit was given to Him without measure so that He alone could fulfill all justice. For His justice is sufficient for all nations, according to the Scriptures. As the earth brings forth its buds and as the garden germinates its own seed, so the Lord God shall bring forth justice and praise before all the nations. For this is the shoot of justice, which the flower of glory adorns with its blessings when it has grown. But how great is this glory? How can anyone think of anything more glorious, or rather, how can anyone conceive of this at all? For the flower rises from the root of Jesse. you ask: “How far?” Surely it rises even to the highest place because Jesus Christ is in the glory of God the Father. His magnificence is elevated above the heavens, so that He, the issue of the Lord, is splendid and glorious, the sublime fruit of earth.

But what is our benefit from this fruit? What other than the fruit of blessing from the blessed fruit? From this seed, this shoot, this flower, surely the fruit of blessing comes forth. It has come even to us; first as a seed it is planted through the grace of pardon, then germinated with the increase of perfection and finally, it flowers in the hope or the attainment of glory. For the fruit was blessed by God and in God, so that God may be glorified through it. For us, too, the fruit was blessed, so that blessed by God, we may be glorified in Him through the promise spoken to Abraham. God made the fruit a blessing for all nations.” – Baldwin of Forde O.Cist ( c 1125– 1190) Cistercian Abbot, Bishop, then Archbishop of Canterbury ( An excerpt from A Sermon on the ‘Hail Mary’).

PRAYER – In Your goodness Lord, as we rejoice at the coming of Your Son in flesh and blood like ours, grant that when He comes again in glory, we may receive the gift of eternal life. And may His Blessed and Immaculate ever Virgin Mother, cast upon us a look of mercy and intercede on our behalf. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God now and for all eternity, amen.


Our Morning Offering – 21 December – Hail Mary, the Angelic Salutation

Our Morning Offering – 21 December – “Month of the Immaculate Conception” – Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Advent

Hail Mary, the Angelic Salutation

The Hail Mary/Ave Maria

Hail Mary, full of grace,
the Lord is with thee.
Blessed art thou among women,
and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners,
now and at the hour of our death.

Áve María, grátia pléna,
Dóminus técum.
Benedícta tū in muliéribus,
et benedíctus frúctus véntris túi, Iésus.
Sáncta María, Máter Déi,
óra pro nóbis peccatóribus,
nunc et in hóra mórtis nóstrae.

Today, Catholics may wish to thank St Peter Canisdius (1521-1397), for this Doctor of the Church gave us the second half of the Hail Mary prayer.

This 16th-century Saint, known as the second Apostle of Germany, followed in the giant footsteps of St Boniface, who evangelised Germany a thousand years earlier. He was also active at the Council of Trent and wrote much on the Blessed Virgin Mary.

The first half of the Hail Mary, of course, comes from Scripture. What many Catholics don’t know, is that the second half of this Catholic prayer is due to the intervention of St Peter Canisius at the Council of Trent. St Peter began adding onto the scriptural part of the Hail Mary, the “Holy Mary Mother of God pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.” It was Trent that officially accepted this addition to the prayer and included it in their famous Catechism of the Council of Trent in 1566.

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 21 December – Blessed Daniel of the Annunciation OdeM

Saint of the Day – 21 December – Blessed Daniel of the Annunciation OdeM (13th Century-possibly) Friar of the Order of Our Lady of Mercy and the Redemption of the Captives, commonly called the Mercedarians. Also known as Daniele dell’Annunziata.

Sadly, we have almost no information of this Blessed not even the confirmed dates of his life.

Daniel was a Mercedarian Friar at the Monastery of Santa Maria della Pace in Naples, Italy. He was a staunch defender of the freedom of the Church from state control and of his Order.

Monastery of Santa Maria della Pace

He was known for personal piety and strict adherence to his Order’s rule and orthodox Christian doctrine.

The Church of Monastery of Santa Maria della Pace
Posted in IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MARIAN TITLES, NOVENAS, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS

Feast of St Thomas, Apostle of Christ, Christmas Novena to the Christ Child, Day Six, Notre-Dame de Saint-Acheul / Our Lady of Saint Acheul, Amiens, France, (4th Century) and Memorials of the Saints – 21 December

Feast of St Thomas, Apostle of Christ
His Feast was moved to 3 July in 1969

Christmas Novena to the Christ Child, Day Six:

Notre-Dame de Saint-Acheul / Our Lady of Saint Acheul, Amiens, France, founded by Saint Firmin, Bishop (4th Century) – 21 December:

The Church containing the Shrine of Our Lady of Acheul, was located near Amiens. In fact, Saint Acheul was once considered the Mother-Church of the Cathedral of Amiens and was sometimes called the “Old Cathedral of Amiens,” although this is no longer the case, as there is now a larger Cathedral Church in Amiens.
The Church stands on the very place where once a Roman temple stood, and tradition tells that Saint Firminus (Died 303) was the Apostle of Amiens, arriving there before the close of the third century after Christ. It is said that by the eloquence of his preaching and the number of his miracles, Saint Firminus (or Saint Firmin) converted many idolaters to the True Faith and Baptised three thousand men in forty days.
The early Church, built around the year 300, contained the remains of the Martyred Saint. This Church was devastated repeatedly by the invasions of the Normans, and was finally totally destroyed in 1218. The relics of Saint Firmin were transferred to the Cathedral of Amiens during the Middle Ages.
The Shrine of the Virgin of Saint Acheul, is noteworthy for a singular miracle – an apparition which occurred during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. The celebrant, after the Consecration, saw a hand appear from within a luminous cloud and the hand of Christ took the Sacred Host and dropped it into the Chalice. Some of the faithful present likewise witnessed the same thing – a certain skeptic was brought to his knees in humble acceptance of the fact, that the Holy Sacrifice is truly the same as that of Calvary. The armorial bearings of the Abbey of Saint-Acheul, displays a hand in remembrance of this miracle.

The Altar to Our Lady at the Cathedral

The present Cathedral of Saint Acheul was not finished until the fifteenth century. After the erection of the new Cathedral at Amiens, Saint Acheul was known as the Church of Our Lady of Acheul. Miracles took place frequently and pilgrimages continued.
The Church of Saint Acheul was destroyed by a natural phenomenon, probably a strong storm, in about the year 1751. It was rebuilt and completed in 1760. A few short years later, during the Terror of the French Revolution, the Church was used as a stable.
Today, the Church is protected as an historical monument, the decree given in 1969. The Abbey buildings are now occupied by a private party but the Church is used as a Parish Church.

The Abbey building is visible next door

St Peter Canisius SJ (1521-1397) Doctor of the Church (Optional Memorial)
His Feast day is 27 April (General Roman Calendar, 1926–1969.
AND Pope Benedict’s Catechesis on St Peter Canisius:

Bl Adrian of Dalmatia

St Anastasius II of Antioch (Died 609) Bishop and Martyr, Confessor, Defender of the Faith.

St Anrê Tran An Dung
St Baudacarius of Bobbio
St Beornwald of Bampton
Bl Bezela of Göda
Blessed Daniel of the Annunciation OdeM Mercedarian Friar (13th Century?)
St Dioscorus

Blessed Dominic Spadafora OP (1450-1521) Dominican Priest, renowned Preacher and Evangelist. His body is incorrupt.

St Festus of Tuscany
St Glycerius of Nicomedia
St James of Valencia
St John of Tuscany
St John Vincent
St Micah the Prophet
St Phêrô Truong Van Thi
St Severin of Trèves (Died c 300) Bishop, Confessor
Bl Sibrand of Marigård
St Themistocles of Lycia