Everyday unite your prayers and adorations with those of the Most Holy Virgin and of one of the nine choirs of Angels and Saints, to honour one of the dispositions of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and to practise some virtue in its honour.
THE FIRST DAY
With the Blessed Virgin, the Seraphim and the Holy Patriarchs.
Adore often the Sacred Heart of our Lord Jesus Christ in the most Holy Sacrament, humble yourself before the Infinite Majesty of God the Father and offer, continually to Him, the purest and most profound homages.
Practice—Renew in your soul, the most lively sentiments of respect and adoration for God and frequently make these acts.
Prayer of St Alphonsus Liguori to the Sacred Heart
O Adorable Heart of my Jesus, Heart created expressly. for the love of men! Until now, I have shown towards Thee only ingratitude. Pardon me, O my Jesus. Heart of my Jesus, Abyss of Love and of Mercy, how is it possible, that I do not die of sorrow when I reflect on Thy Goodness to me and my ingratitude to Thee? Thou, my Creator, after having created me, hast given Thy Blood and Thy Life for me and, not content with this, Thou hast invented a means of offering Thyself everyday for me, in the Holy Eucharist, exposing Thyself to a thousand insults and outrages. Ah, Jesus, do Thou wound my heart with a great contrition for my sins and a lively love for Thee. Through Thy Tears and Thy Blood, give me the grace of perseverance in Thy fervent love, until I breathe my last sigh. Amen.
Thought for the Day – 15 June – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Divine Worker
“Work is both a right and an obligation, which belongs to all men. In the beginning of creation, however, work was a pleasure for the human race and the earth yielded its fruits easily and readily. “The Lord God took the man and placed him in the Garden of Eden to till it and to keep it” (Gen 2:15). But after Adam’s sin of rebellion, nature, in its turn, rebelled against man. Work was no longer merely a pleasure but, a chastisement and a dire necessity too.
“Cursed be the ground because of you,” God said to Adam. “In toil shall you eat of it, all the days of your life; thorn and thistles shall it bring forth to you and you shall eat the plants of the field. In the sweat of your brow, you shall eat bread.” (Gen 3:17-19).
This commandment of God is binding upon everyone. Idleness is condemned as the source of evil. “Idleness is an apt teacher of mischief ” (Ecclus 33:29). Everyone must engage, in either mental or manual labour. These two kinds of work, complement one another and are equally dignified and necessary. A man who works with his hands should not envy the man who works with his intellect. The mental worker should not despise nor consider himself superior to the manual labourer. We are all brothers and have been placed wherever we are by the designs of Providence. For this reason, we should love and help one another.”
Quote/s of the Day – 15 June – The Memorial of St Vitus (c 290-c 303) and Companions, Martyrs – Wisdom 3:1-8, Luke 10:16-20
“But yet rejoice not in this, that spirits are subject unto you but rejoice in this, that your names are written in Heaven.”
“So also, you now indeed have sorrow but I will see you again and your heart shall rejoice. And your joy, no man shall take from you.”
“…We must all rejoice exceedingly, to be even the last, in the Kingdom of God!”
St Gregory the Great (540-604) Pope, Confessor, Father and Doctor “Father of the Fathers”
“From now on, then, if God has no need of your goods, neither does He have to give you this great thing, if you refuse to love Him, all He requires is love, without which nothing constrains His giving. Love, then and you will receive the Kingdom, love and you will possess it… Love God more than yourself and already, you begin to have what it is your desire to possess fully, in Heaven.”
St Anselm (1033-1109) Doctor magnificus Doctor Marianus
One Minute Reflection – 15 June – “The Month of the Sacred Heart” – The Memorial of St Vitus (c 290-c 303) and Companions, Martyrs – Wisdom 3:1-8, Luke 10:16-20
“He who hears you, hears Me and he who rejects you, rejects Me and he who rejects Me, rejects Him Who sent Me.”…Luke 10:16
REFLECTION – “Someone, having listened to the verse: “Offer to God a sacrifice of praise” (Ps 50.14), said to himself: “I will go to Church every day when I get up and sing a morning hymn; then an evening hymn at the end of the day and then, in my own home, a third and fourth hymn. This is how I will make a sacrifice of praise everyday and offer it to my God.” It is good to do this if you do it in truth but beware of placing your confidence in what you do and fear lest, while your tongue is speaking eloquently before God, your life may be speaking badly… Take care you do not live evilly, while speaking well.”…St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor of the Church
PRAYER – Grant O Lord, we pray, that through the intercession of Thy Holy Martyrs Vitus, Modestus and Crescentia, Thy Church be not high-minded but grow in that humility which is pleasing to Thee, so that despising evil, she may practice whatever is good with unbounded charity. 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). “Jesus, meek and humble of heart, make my heart like unto Thine.” – 300 Days, EVERYTIME. (Unless otherwise stated, e.g., “once a day,” a partial Indulgence may be gained any number of times in succession.) St Pope Pius X, 15 September 1905.
Our Morning Offering – 15 June – “The Month of the Sacred Heart”
O Good Jesus, Make Me Live in Thee and for Thee By Pope Benedict XV (1854-1922)
O Most Sacred Heart of Jesus! O fount of every good! I adore Thee, I love Thee and sincerely repenting of my sins I present to Thee my poor heart. Give it back to me humble, patient, pure and in everything, conformed to Thy wishes. Make me, O good Jesus, live in Thee and for Thee. Protect me in dangers, comfort me in afflictions, grant me health of body, succour in my temporal needs, Thy blessing in all my works and the grace of a holy death. Amen
Indulgence – 100 days Once a day Pope Benedict XV 4 December 1916
Saint of the Day – 15 June – Saint Isfrid of Ratzeburg O.Praem (c 1115-1204) Bishop of Ratzeburg, Confessor, Spiritual advisor, Missionary, Mediator and Peacemaker, a renowned Administrator and gentle corrector of his flock, whom he protected against political abuses, Defender of the Pope and the Holy See. Istfrid also built and restored Churches and Monasteries and established many new Parishes. Born in c.1125 in Germany and died on 15 June 1204 at Ratzeburg, Holstein, Germany of natural causes, aged 89. Additional Memorial – 17 February in the Diocese of Osnabrück, Germany and the Archdiocese of Hamburg, Germany. Also known as – Isfried, Isfrido.
Isfrid was born around 1115 in Germany. Nothing is known about his early years. He entered the Order of the Premonstratensians, which is also called the Norbertines, after its founder, St Norbert of Xanten (1080-1134), or White Canons, after the colour of their habit.
Istfrid became a Canon in the Monastery in Cappenberg near Selm in Westphalia. In 1159 he was elected the first Prior of the Monastery of Jerichow near Berlin. There he built a magnificent Romanesque Church.
At the request of Henrik Löwe, Duke of Saxony, the Norbertines of Magdeburg had turned their attention to the conversion of the pagan Vendors, a common name for the Slavic tribes on the Elbe and the Baltic Sea. Saint Evermod was elected by Henrik Löwe, as the first Bishop of the restored Diocese of Ratzeburg in northern Germany. Upon the death of St Evermod, Istfrid was proposed as his successor. But strife over this election led to a two-year sedis vacancy. But the battle was ended through Henrik Löwe’s intervention and in 1180, Isfrid was finally elected, as the second Bishop of Ratzeburg. The medieval chronicle describes him as sanctus sancti successor – a saint who succeeds a saint.
Isfrid completed the construction of the Cathedral, which was begun by Evermod. He was known for his organisational skills and created many Parishes. He also worked tirelessly for the German colonisation of the land of the Vendians. Against himself, he tended to be strict in his penance but against the rebellious, he was a gentle judge and tried to convince them and win them over through his preaching. In 1190 he visited the Monastery of Floreffe in present-day Belgium, which had been destroyed by fire. According to Arnold of Lübeck, he succeeded in recalling all the Canons who had been scattered in all directions over the past year and a half. He restored the Monastery and Consecrated seven Altars in one day. The same year, he also Consecrated the Romanesque Church in Postel, a daughter house of Floreffe.
Isfrid was the Confessor and friend of Duke Henrik Löwe, a pious layman who enthusiastically supported Isfrid in his project to continue the missionary work of the invaders that Evermod had started. But Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa (1152-90; Emperor from 1155) wrongly took from Henrik his possessions and gave them to Bernhard of Anhalt. In the battle between the imperial party stauferne and the papal party, Isfrid took the side of the defeated Henrik Löwe, as he had once sworn allegiance to him, despite all threats and protests.
Isfrid also defended the rights of his people against the intrigues of Emperor Fredrik and his vassal, Bernhard of Anhalt. Bernhard punished anyone who disliked the Emperor’s policy towards the Pope or who sympathised with Duke Henrik. Isfrid bore these persecutions with dignity and patience until Henrik was finally reconciled with the Emperor, who returned to him the duchy. Isfrid remained Duke Henrik’s Confessor and spiritual guide and when Henrik was dying in 1195, Isfrid went to him to hear his Confession, give him absolution and the last Sacraments before he died on 6 August 1195. In the old annals of Stederburg, Isfrid is called, “a man who excelled in Christian wisdom, humility and strength.”
In 1195, the Canons at the Chapter in Schwerin, which was composed of both Saxons and Wends, could not agree on the election of a Bishop. Isfrid was asked by the Pope to mediate and judge between the candidates and the choice fell on Brunward, one of the first converts to receive the Episcopal honour.
Isfrid died on 15 June 1204 in Ratzeburg, aged 89 and was buried in the choir in his Cathedral, next to his predecessor St Evermod. His reputation for holiness spread rapidly and miracles continued to occur after his death. Pope Benedict XIII (1724-1730), confirmed his cult on 26 March and 12 April 1728, along with a number of other Premonstratensians.
His memorial day is the day of his death, 15 June. In the Diocese of Osnabrück he is commemorated on 17 February with two other Bishops of Ratzeburg, Saints Evermod (1154-1178) and Ludolf (1236-1250), both of whom, were PremonstratensianS. Because Ratzeburg in the state of Schleswig-Holstein is today located in the newly established Catholic Diocese of Hamburg (1995), the three holy Bishops were transferred from the calendar of the Diocese of Osnabrück to the calendar of the Archdiocese of Hamburg. He is depicted as a Bishop, with the water that turned into wine and with the blind man for whom he prayed that his sight be restored, which God approved.
St Vitus (c 290-c 303) – Martyr, One of the Fourteen Holy Helpers. Died aged 12-13 years of age. Patronages – against animal attacks, against dog bites, against epilepsy; epileptics, against lightning, against over-sleeping, against rheumatic chorea or Saint Vitus Dance, against snake bites, against storms, against wild beasts, of actors, comedians, dancers, dogs, Bohemia, Czech Republic, Serbia, 17 cities. His very short life: https://anastpaul.com/2017/06/15/saint-of-the-day-15-june-st-vitus/
St Abraham of Saint-Cyriacus St Achaicus of Corinth St Barbara Cui Lianshi St Benildis of Córdoba
St Bernard of Montjoux/Menthon CRSA (c 1020-1081) “Apostle of the Alps” Priest, Founder of a patrol that cleared robbers from the mountains and he established hospices for travellers and pilgrims. The large dogs, trained to search for lost victims in the mountains, are named for him. Patronages – Alpinists, Alps (proclaimed by Pope Pius XI on 20 August 1923), Campiglia Cervo, Italy, mountain climbers (proclaimed by Pope Pius XI on 20 August 1923), mountaineers, skiers, travellers in the mountains (proclaimed by Pope Pius XI on 20 August 1923). Biography: https://anastpaul.com/2018/06/15/saint-of-the-day-15-june-st-bernard-of-menthon-c-r-s-a-c-1020-1081-apostle-of-the-alps/
St Constantine of Beauvais St Domitian of Lobbes St Edburgh of Winchester St Eigil St Eutropia of Palmyra St Fortunatus of Corinth
St Hadelinus of Lobbes St Hesychius of Durostorum St Hilarion of Espalion St Isfrid of Ratzeburg O.Praem (c 1115-1204) Bishop, Confessor Bl Juan Rodriguez St Julius of Durostorum St Landelin of Crespin St Leonides of Palmyra St Libya of Palmyra St Lotharius of Séez St Melan of Viviers St Orsisius Bl Pedro da Teruel Bl Peter Snow St Pierre de Cervis
Bl Ralph Grimston St Tatian of Cilicia Bl Thomas Scryven St Trillo of Wales St Vaughen of Ireland
St Vouga of Lesneven
Martyr of Lucania – 11 Saints: Eleven Christians Martyred together. We known nothing else about them but the names – Anteon, Candidus, Cantianilla, Cantianus, Chrysogonus, Jocundus, Nivitus, Protus, Quintianus, Silvius, Theodolus in Lucania (modern Basilicata), Italy, date unknown.