Thought for the Day – 2 February – The Purification of Our Lady

Thought for the Day – 2 February – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Purification of Our Lady

“In the Gospel narrative of St Luke (Cf 2:22-31), another character also appears.
He intrudes upon the scene without any apparent right to be there but, he had been inspired by God.
This is the old and saintly Simeon.
He was not a priest.
He was an upright man, careful in the observance of the law, who was waiting longingly for the coming of the promises Redeemer.
The Holy Spirit dwelt in him and had revealed, that he would not die until he had seen the Saviour.
He was inspired to go to the Temple, where he saw Jesus.
He took Him in his arms and was overcome with joy.
Then he blessed God and declared that he was now prepared to accept death, as he had been able to see and embrace the Saviour, as God had promised.
Now thou dost dismiss thy servant, O Lord, according to thy word, in peace” (Lk 2:29).
It was a beautiful way to meet death, to be able to hold Jesus close to his heart and see his long life of hope and expectation rewarded by the loving embrace of his Lord.

Let us try and live like Simeon, with our minds and hearts turned towards Jesus.
Let us think chiefly of Him, love Him, above everything else and work only for Him.
Then our death will be as beautiful as his.
In fact, we shall be even more fortunate, for we can go further than receiving Jesus into our arms.
We shall be able to receive Him into out hearts.
He will be at hand to give us the supernatural strength which we shall need on our great journey into eternity.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci



Quote/s of the Day – 2 February – ‘He offered Himself, so who are you,to hesitate to offer yourself?’

Quote/s of the Day – 2 February – The Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin

The day will come when this Child
will no longer be offered in the Temple,
nor in Simeon’s arms
but outside the City
in the arms of the Cross.
The day will come when He
will not be redeemed
by the blood of a sacrifice
but redeem others ,
with His own Blood. …”
That will be the evening sacrifice;
this is the morning sacrifice;
this one is the happiest
but that one is the most complete;
for this one was offered
at the time of birth
and that one will be offered
in the fullness of time,

But what shall we offer, brothers,
what shall we give Him
for all the benefits He has given us?
He offered the most precious Victim
He possessed for our sake;
in truth, He could not have had
anything more precious.
So let up, too,
do what we can,
let us offer Him the best we have,
that is to say, ourselves!
He offered Himself,
so who are you,
to hesitate to offer yourself?

St Bernard (1091-1153)
Mellifluous Doctor of the Church


One Minute Reflection – 2 February – We must be burning with love and radiant with good deeds

One Minute Reflection – 2 February – The Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin, Candlemas – Mal 3:1-4, Luke 2:22-32

And inspired by the Spirit he came into the temple and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the law, he took him up in his arms and blessed God …” – Luke 2:27-28

REFLECTION “Your lamps must be burning in your hands” (Lk 12:35). By this outward sign let us remind ourselves of the joy of Simeon, carrying the Light in his hands … We must be burning with love and radiant with good deeds and so, take up Christ in our hands with Simeon … Let us discuss this charming custom of the Church of bearing lights aloft on this feast day … Could anyone hold up a lighted candle in his hands on this day, without at once remembering that old man, who on this same day, took up in his arms, Jesus, God’s Word, clothed in flesh like a candle-flame clothed in wax and affirmed Him to be “the Light which would be a beacon for the Gentiles.” Surely he was that “burning and radiant lamp” (Jn 5:35; 1,7) which bore witness to the Light. For this purpose he came in the Spirit, who had filled him, into the temple, that he might “receive, O God, your loving-kindness in the midst of your temple” (Ps 48[47]:10) and declare him to be loving-kindness indeed and the light of your own people.

Truly, O holy Simeon, in the quiet contentment of old age, you carried this Light not simply in your hands but in the very dispositions of your heart. You were like a lamp-standard, seeing so clearly how much the Gentiles would one day be lit up, while reflecting … the bright rays of our faith. Old, yet still sincere, you can now be happy, in that, you really see what once you but foresaw. Gone is the world’s gloom, “the Gentiles bask in this light of yours,” “the whole earth is full of his glory” (Is 60:3; 6:3).” … Blessed Guerric of Igny O.Cist. (c 1080-1157) Cistercian Abbot

PRAYER – Almighty, eternal God, we humbly beseech Your majesty that, as Your only-begotten Son was this day presented in the temple in the nature of our flesh, so may You grant us to be presented to You, with purified minds. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).


Our Morning Offering – 2 February – O Gloriosa Virginum

Our Morning Offering – 2 February – The Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin. Candlemas

O Gloriosa Virginum
By St Venantius Fortunatus (c 530 – c 609)

O Glorious Virgin, ever blest,
Sublime above the starry sky,
Who nurture from thy spotless breast
To thy Creator didst supply.

What we had lost through hapless Eve,
The Blossom sprung from these restores,
And, granting bliss to souls that grieve,
Unbars the everlasting doors.

O Gate, through which hath passed the King.
O Hall, whence Light shone through the gloom;
The ransomed nations, praise and sing
Life given from the Virgin womb.

All honour, laud and glory be,
O Jesu, Virgin-born, to Thee;
All glory, as is ever meet,
To Father and to Paraclete.

O Gloriosa Domina is the second half of the hymn: Quem Terra, Pontus, Aethera. It was composed by St Venantius Fortunatus (c 530 – c 609) the Bishop of Poitiers.
In 1632, in accordance with revisions made to the hymns of the Divine Office by Pope Urban VIII (1568-1644), it was altered and changed to O Gloriósa Vírginum.
It is sung in the Common of the Blessed Virgin Mary of the Roman Breviary.
It is said that St Anthony of Padua (1195-1231) was always singing this hymn. His mother sang it to him as a baby,and even on his death bed after receiving Extreme Unction, he intoned the hymn.

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 2 February – Saint Lawrence of Canterbury (Died 619)

Saint of the Day – 2 February – Saint Lawrence of Canterbury (Died 619) the Second Archbishop of Canterbury the successor of St Augustine of Canterbury from 604 until his death in 619, but he was Consecrated as Archbishop by his predecessor, St Augustine, during Augustine’s lifetime, to ensure continuity in the office, Benedictine Monk, Missionary. He was a member of the Gregorian mission sent from Italy to England to Christianise the Anglo-Saxons. Born in the 6th Century and died on 2 February 619 in Canterbury, England of natural causes. Also known as – Lorenzo.

The Roman Martyrology states: “In Canterbury in England, St Lawrence, Bishop, who after St Augustine ruled this Church and greatly increased it by converting King Edbald to the Faith.”

Lawrence, a Monk of the Monastery of St Andrea al Clelio in Rome, arrived in England with St Augustine of Canterbury, to accompany him on his new mission in a land that was still pagan. The expedition had been strongly desired by Pope St Gregory the Great, informed by the Christian Queen of Kent, of the need for shepherds to convert the Anglo Saxons. The missionaries, after a long and dangerous journey, landed in 597 on the island of Thanet, in the kingdom of Kent. Everything that is known about Lawrence’s life is due to the first two books of “Ecclesiastical history” written by St Bede the Venerable.

In 601, following the Baptism of King St Ethelbert, Lawrence was sent to Rome to announce the success of the mission to the Pontiff and receive further instructions on how to proceed.

On the death of Augustine, in 604, he was succeeded by ,Lawrence, whom he himself had designated as his successor. The new Bishop consecrated “the Church dedicated to the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul, so that the bodies of Augustine, all the bishops of Canterbury and the Kings of the Cantia could be buried.”

Lawrence also attempted to continue the consolidation policy already pursued by Augustine among the Anglo-Saxons of south-east England but was unable, like his predecessor, to intensify collaboration with the Irish and British Bishops of the western part of the country, still linked to the island traditions. To the Irish shepherds he address a letter that would find lasting echo in England in the following centuries: “Before understanding the actual situation, we held in high esteem the religious practice of the British and the Irish […]. Having known the British, we thought that the Irish would have been better. But now we have understood […] that the Irish do not surpass the Britons in ecclesiastical observance.” In the same tone he also wrote to the British Bishops but, as Bede pointed out, he made absolutely no profit with this attitude and, therefore, had to face the worsening of the situation even in Kent itself.
The latter phenomenon culminated in 616 with the accession to the throne of Edbald, son of Ethelbert, who refused to embrace the Christian faith accepted by his father.

StLawrence’s vision of St Peter

Two Monks, followers of ,Lawrence, St Mellitus (24 April) and St Justus (10 November), preferred to return to Gaul, in order to avoid getting involved in any bloody persecutions against Christians. Lawrence, after having meditated on this for a long time, in the end preferred to remain in his chair and face the new King. According to an ancient local tradition, also reported by St Bede, Lawrence changed his mind about his departure ,following a very concrete apparition of St Peter, who actually whipped Lawrence for his cowardice. “The servant of Christ, Lawrence, went immediately to the King and, opening his robe, showed him how many wounds he had received.” Edbaldo was greatly impressed by this extraordinary display of supernatural power and decided to convert to Christianity immediately. Granted the resumption of the development of the Church in Kent, Mellitus and justus also soon returned to their positions.

St Lawrence shows King Edbald his wounds

Lawrence died on 2 February 619 and was buried next to St Augustine in Canterbury Abbey. The tomb was opened in 1091 by Abbot Guido, to transfer the relics to a more eminent place and an intense perfume came out that invaded the entire Monastery. Another inspection of his tomb again took place in 1915.

Gravestone marking the site of St Laurence’s burial in St Augustine’s Abbey, Canterbury

The antiquity of the worship paid to the holy Bishop is attested by the Irish Missal of Stowe, which set the date of his feast at 3 February, a commemoration that remained unchanged until the last edition of the Martyrology moved it to 2 February, the actual anniversary of his birth into Heaven.

The iconography relating to St Lawrence usually depicts him in the act of showing King Edbald his wounds.


Feast of the Purification of Our Lady – Candlemas Day and Memorials of the Saints – 2 February

Feast of the Purification of Our Lady – Candlemas Day – 2 February

Our Lady of the Candles – (formally known as Nuestra Señora de la Purificación y la Candelaria) is a Marian title and image venerated by Filipino Catholics. The image, which is enshrined on the balcony of Jaro Cathedral, is known as the patroness of Jaro District of Iloilo City and the whole of the Western Visayas.
The feast day of Our Lady of the Candles is on Candlemas (2 February) and is celebrated in Iloilo City with a Solemn Pontifical Mass presided by the Archbishop of Jaro.

St Adalbald of Ostrevant
St Adeloga of Kitzingen
St Agathodoros of Tyana
St Andrea Carlo Ferrari
St Apronian the Executioner
St Bruno of Ebsdorf
St Burchard of Wurzburg
St St Candidus the Martyr
St Columbanus of Ghent
St Cornelius the Centurion
St Felician the Martyr
St Feock
St Firmus of Rome
St Flosculus of Orléans
St Fortunatus the Martyr
St Hilarus the Martyr
St Jeanne de Lestonnac
St Lawrence of Canterbury (Died 2 February 619) The Second Archbishop of Canterbury
Bl Louis Alexander Alphonse Brisson

Blessed Maria Domenica Mantovani (1862-1934) Virgin, Religious and and the co-founder of the Little Sisters of the Holy Family.
Her Life:

St Marquard of Hildesheim
St Mun

Blessed Peter Cambiano OP (1320-1365) Martyr, Priest and Friar of the Order of Preachers, Confessor, renowned Preacher calling many to conversion by his holy zeal and the power of his words. Martyred by heretics.
His Life and Death:

St Rogatus the Martyr
St Saturninus the Martyr
St Sicharia of Orleans
St Simon of Cassia Fidati
St Theodoric of Ninden
St Victoria the Martyr

Martyrs of Ebsdorf: Members of the army of King Louis III of France under the leadership of Duke Saint Bruno of Ebsdorf. The Martyrs died fighting invading pagan Norsemen, and defending the local Christian population. Four bishops, including Saint Marquard of Hildesheim and Saint Theodoric of Ninden, eleven nobles, and countless unnamed foot soldiers died repelling the invaders. They were martyred in the winter of 880 in battle at Luneberg Heath and Ebsdorf, Saxony (modern Germany).