Quote/s of the Day – 24 March – Thursday of the Third Week of Lent – Jeremias 7:1-7, Luke 4:38-44
“And the crowds were seeking after Him and they came to Him and tried to detain Him, that He might not depart from them. But He said to them, To the other towns too I must proclaim the kingdom of God, for this is why I have been sent.”
“Christ has no body on earth but yours, no hands but yours, no feet but yours. Yours are the eyes through which, the compassion of Christ, looks out to the world. Yours are the feet, with which, He is to go about doing good. Yours are the hands, with which, He is to bless others now.”
St Teresa of Avila (1515-1582) Doctor of the Church
Great convert Teacher of the Faith Who never ceased from preaching Christ, Saint Paul impart to us your zeal, That we may reach the joys unseen.
All glory to the Trinity, Forever honour, sov’reignty, To God Almighty be all praise, Beginning and the End of all. Amen
Thursday of the Third Week of Lent – 24 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Jeremias 7:1-7, Luke 4:38-44
“The eyes of all look hopefully to You, O Lord,and You give them their food in due season. You open Your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing.” – Psalm144:15-16
“Now when the sun was setting, all those who had any who were sick with various diseases brought them to him and he laid his hands on everyone of them and healed them. And demons also came out of many, crying, “You are the Son of God!” But he rebuked them and would not allow them to speak because they knew that he was the Christ.”
“BUT OBSERVE AGAIN, I pray, how great is the efficacy of the touch of His holy flesh. For It both drives away diseases, of various kinds and a crowd of demons and overthrows the power of the devil and heals a very great multitude of people, in one moment of time. And although able to perform these miracles by a word and the inclination of His will, yet, to teach us something useful, He also lays His hands upon the sick. For it was necessary, most necessary, for us to learn, that the holy flesh which He had made His own, was endowed with the activity of the power of the Word, by His having implanted in it, a godlike might. Let It then take hold of us, or rather let us take hold of It, by the mystical “Giving of thanks,” that It may free us also from the sicknesses of the soul and from the assault and violence of demons.
HE WOULD NOT PERMIT the unclean demons to confess Him, for it was not fitting for them to usurp the glory of the Apostolic office, nor with impure tongue, to talk of the mystery of Christ. Yea! although they speak ought that is true, let no-one put credence in them – for the light is not known by the aid of darkness, as the disciple of Christ teaches us, where he says, “For what communion hath light with darkness? or what consent hath Christ with Beliar?” – St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Father and Doctor of the Incarnation
One Minute Reflection – 24 Marcr – Thursday of the Third Week of Lent – Jeremias 7:1-7, Luke 4:38-44 and the Feast Dy of St Gabriel the Archangel
“At that time, Jesus rose from the synagogue and entered Simon’s house. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a great fever and they besought Him for her.” – Luke 4:38
REFLECTION – “Now Simon’s mother-in-law was kept in her bed sick with a fever.” May Christ come to our house and enter in and by His command, cure the fever of our sins. Each one of us is sick with a fever. Whenever I give way to anger, I have a fever. There are as many fevers as there are faults and vices. Let us beg the Apostles to intercede for us with Jesus, that He may come to us and touch our hand. If He does so, at once our fever is gone. He is an excellent Physician and truly the Chief Physician. Moses is a physician. Isaias is a physician. All the Saints are physicians but He is the Chief Physician.” – St Jerome (343-420) Father & Doctor of the Church (Homilies on the Gospel of Mark 75).
PRAYER – O God, Who, out of all the Angels, chose the Archangel Gabriel to announce the mystery of Your Incarnation, mercifully grant that we, who keep his feast on earth, may have him as our patron in Heaven. Who lives and reigns with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).
Our Morning Offering – 24 March – Thursday of the Third Week of Lent
Behold Me, O Sweet Lord, Behold Me! By St Aelred of Rievaulx O.Cist. (1110-1167)
Behold me, O Sweet Lord, behold me! For I hope. that in Your Loving Kindness, O Most Merciful One, You will behold me, either as a loving Physician to heal, a kind Teacher to correct, or an indulgent Father to pardon… confident in Your Sweet Powerful Mercy and most Merciful Power, I ask, in virtue of Your Sweet Name and of the Mystery of Your Sacred Humanity that, mindful of Your Kindness and unmindful of my ingratitude, You forgive me my sins and heal the languors of my soul. Amen
Saint of the Day – 24 March – The Archangel Saint Gabriel whose name means “the Power of God. ” He appeared to the prophet Daniel (Dan 8:16; 9:21), to the priest Zachary to announce the forthcoming birth of Saint John the Baptist (Luke 1:11, 19) and to the Blessed Virgin Mary to announce the birth of Our Saviour (Luke 1:26.). His Feast Day is celebrated today 24 March.
Saint Gabriel, the Archangel Abbot Prosper Guéranger OSB (1805-1875)
So far in the Church’s Calendar, we have not met with any Feast in honour of the Holy Angels. Amidst the ineffable joys of Christmas Night, we mingled our timid but glad voices with the Hymns of these heavenly Spirits, who sang around the Crib of our Emmanuel. The very recollection brings joy to our hearts, saddened as they now are by penitential feelings and by the near approach of the mournful anniversary of our Jesus’ Death. Let us, for a moment, interrupt our sadness, and keep the Feast of the Archangel Gabriel. Later on, we shall have Michael, Raphael, and the countless host of the Angel Guardians but today, it is just that we should honour Gabriel. Yes, a day hence and we shall see this heavenly Ambassador of the Blessed Trinity coming down to the Virgin of Nazareth, let us, therefore, recommend ourselves to him and beseech him to teach us how to celebrate, in a becoming manner, the grand Mystery of which he was the Messenger.
Gabriel is one of the first of the Angelic Kingdom. He tells Zachary, that he stands before the Face of God (St. Luke 1:11,19.). He is the Angel of the Incarnation because it is in this Mystery, which apparently is so humble, that the power of God is principally manifested and, Gabriel signifies the strength of God. We find the Archangel preparing for his sublime office, even in the Old Testament. First of all, he appears to Daniel, after this Prophet had had the vision of the Persian and Grecian Empires and, such was the majesty of his person, that Daniel fell on his face trembling (Dan 7:17). Shortly afterwards, he appears again to the same Prophet, telling him the exact time of the coming of the Messias: Know thou and take notice: that from the going forth of the word to build up Jerusalem again, unto Christ the Prince, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks (Ibid. 9:25), that is, sixty-nine weeks of years.
When the fulness of time had come and Heaven was about to send the last of the Prophets, he, who after preaching to men the approach of the Messias, is to show him to the people, saying: Behold the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world, Gabriel descends from Heaven to the temple of Jerusalem and prophesies to Zachary the birth of John the Baptist (Luke 1:13), which was to be followed by that of Jesus Himself.
Six months later on, the holy Archangel again appears on the earth and this time it is Nazareth that he visits. He brings the great message from Heaven. Angel as he is, he reveres the humble Maid, whose name is Mary. He has been sent to her by the Most High God, to offer her the immense honour of becoming the Mother of the Eternal Word. It is Gabriel that receives the great Fiat, the consent of Mary and when he leaves this earth, he leaves it in possession of Him, for Whom it had so long prayed, in those words of Isaias: Drop down Dew, O ye Heavens (Is. 14:8.)!
The hour at length came, when the Mother of the Emmanuel was to bring forth the Blessed Fruit of her virginal Womb. Jesus was born amidst poverty but Heaven willed that His Crib should be surrounded by fervent adorers. An Angel appeared to some Shepherds, inviting them to go to the Stable near Bethlehem. He is accompanied by a multitude of the heavenly army, sweetly singing their hymn: Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to men of good will! Who is this Angel that speaks to the Shepherds and seems, as the chief of the other blessed Spirits that are with him? In the opinion of several learned writers, it is the Archangel Gabriel, who is keeping up his ministry as Messenger of the Good Tidings (St. Luke 2:10).
Lastly, when Jesus is suffering His Agony in the Garden of Gethsemani, an Angel appears to Him, not merely as a witness of His suffering but that He might strengthen Him, under the fear his Human Nature felt at the thought of the Chalice of the Passion He was about to drink (Ibid. 22:42, 43.). Who is this Angel? It is Gabriel, as we learn, not only from the writings of several holy and learned authors,but also, from a Hymn which the Holy See has permitted to be used in the Liturgy. …
These are the claims of the great Archangel to our veneration and love; these are the proofs he gives of his deserving his beautiful name, the Strength of God. God has employed him in each stage of the great work, in which he has chiefly manifested his power, for Jesus, even on his Cross, is the Power of God (1 Cor. 1:21.), as the Apostle tells us. Gabriel prepares the way for Jesus. He foretells the precise time of His Coming; He announces the birth of His Precursor; he is present at the solemn moment when the Word is made Flesh; he invites the Shepherds of Bethlehem to come to the Crib and adore the Divine Babe and when Jesus, in his Agony, is to receive Strength from one of His own creatures, Gabriel is found ready in the Garden of Gethsemani, as he had been at Nazareth and Bethlehem.
The Angel of the Agony John Henry Newman (1801-1890)
Jesu! by that shuddering dread which fell on Thee; Jesu! by that cold dismay which sicken’d Thee; Jesu! by that pang of heart which thrill’d in Thee; Jesu! by that mount of sins which crippled Thee; Jesu! by that sense of guilt which stifled Thee; Jesu! by that innocence that girded Thee; Jesu! by that sanctity that reign’d in Thee; Jesu! by that Godhead which was one with Thee; Jesu! spare those souls which are so dear to Thee; Who in prison, calm and patient, wait for Thee; Hasten, Lord, their hour and bid them come to Thee; To that glorious Home, where they shall ever gaze on Thee. Amen
O holy Angel who didst strengthen Jesus Christ our Lord, come and strengthen us also, come and tarry not!
St Pigmenius of Rome St Romulus of North Africa St Secundus of North Africa St Seleucus of Syria St Severo of Catania St Timothy of Rome
Martyrs of Africa – 9 Saints: A group of Christians murdered for their faith in Africa, date unknown. The only details about their that survive are the names – Aprilis, Autus, Catula, Coliondola, Joseph, Rogatus, Salitor, Saturninus and Victorinus. .
Martyrs of Caesarea – 6 Saints: A group of Christians Martyred together in the persecutions of Diocletian. We know little else but six of their names – Agapius, Alexander, Dionysius, Pausis, Romulus and Timolaus. They were martyred by beheading in 303 at Caesarea, Palestine.