Thought for the Day – 8 July – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
“The tendency to complain about others, is a most insidious cancer which can corrode all that is good in our conversation, making it harmful and even gravely sinful. Grumbling is always, more or less sinful, according to the circumstances. It may be a sin against charity, which demands that we love our neighbour as ourselves and help him as much as possible, by word and by deed. It may be a sin of scandal because the person to whom we are complaining maybe provoked to throw stones in his turn at the subject of our detraction. It maybe a sin of theft because it takes away the reputation of the person whom we are criticising. This could carry with it, the obligation to make restitution by withdrawing what we have said, if it is false or doubtful or by speaking charitably of the person whom we have wronged in order to restore his good name. Uncharitableness in speech, is also a sin of injustice, when it involves calumny, in which case, there is an obligation to repair the damage done in the best way possible.
Since criticism of others can be such an evil thing, we should take care not to form the habit of employing it as a means of making our conversation more lively and acceptable. The life of a Catholic, should be governed by charity and grumbling about others, is always an offence against charity!”
Quote/s of the Day – 8 July – The Memorial of St Elizabeth Queen of Portugal TOSF (1271-1336) – Proverbs 31:10-31, Matthew 13:44-52.
“The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure hidden in a field; he who finds it, hides it and in his joy, goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.”
“For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.”
“We have had Your treasure hidden within us, ever since we received baptismal grace, it grows ever richer at Your sacramental table.”
St Ephrem (306-373) Father and Doctor of the Church
“Let your door stand open to receive Him, unlock your soul to Him, offer Him a welcome in your mind and then you will see the riches of simplicity, the treasures of peace, the joy of grace. Throw wide the gate of your heart, stand before the Sun of the everlasting Light.”
St Ambrose (c 340-397) Father and Doctor of the Church
“ He who finds Jesus, finds a rare treasure, indeed, a good above every good, whereas he who loses Him, loses more than the whole world. The man who lives without Jesus, is the poorest of the poor, whereas no-one is so rich, as the man who lives in His grace. … Let all things be loved, for the sake of Jesus but Jesus, for His own sake.”
Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471)
“Do not be afraid any longer, little flock, for your Father is pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your belongings and give alms. Provide money bags for yourselves that do not wear out, an inexhaustible treasure in heaven that no thief can reach nor moth destroy.”
St John Leonardi (1541-1609)
“You leave the land just as it is when you depart, you do not carry anything away. Our first aim is to go to God, we are not on earth for anything but this!”
One Minute Reflection – 8 July – “The Month of the Precious Blood”– The Memorial of St Elizabeth Queen of Portugal TOSF (1271-1336) – Proverbs 31:10-31, Matthew 13:44-52.
“So shall it be at the end of the world. The angels shall go out and shall separate the wicked from among the just. And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” – Matthew 13:49-50
REFLECTION – “Our Lord was an example of incomparable patience. He bore with a “devil” among His disciples even to His Passion (Jn 6,70). He said: “Let them grow together until the harvest lest you uproot the wheat when you pull out the weeds” (cf. Mt 13,29f.). As a symbol of the Church, He preached that the net would bring back to shore, namely the end of the world, every kind of fish, both good and bad. And He made it known, in various other ways, whether openly or in parables, that there would always be a mixture of good and bad. But, nevertheless, He stresses, that we have to protect the Church’s discipline when He says: “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have won over your brother” (Mt 18,15)…
Yet today, we see people who think of nothing but stern commandments, who order that troublemakers be reproved, ‘not giving what is holy to the dogs,’ treating, like the publicans, ‘anyone who despises the Church, cutting off the scandalous member from the body‘ (Mt 7,6 ; 18,17 ; 5,30). Their stormy zeal so troubles the Church, that they pull out the weeds before their time and their blindness makes of them enemies, of the unity of Jesus Christ…
Take care not to let these presumptuous thoughts enter our hearts, trying to separate ourselves from sinners, so as not to be soiled by contact with them, wanting to form a band of pure and holy disciples. We will achieve nothing but breaking up our unity, under the pretext of not associating with the wicked. To the contrary, let us remember the parables of Scripture, their inspired words, their striking examples, where we are shown that, until the end of the world and the day of judgement, the bad will always be mingled amongst the good in the Church, without their participation in the Sacraments being harmful to the good, so long as these latter, have not played a part in their sins.” – St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor of Grace (On Faith and Works – Excerpt ch 3-5)
PRAYER – Most merciful God, Who among other admirable gifts, endowed blessed Queen Elizabeth with the special grace of calming the tumult of war; grant by her intercession that, after the peace for which we humbly pray, we may attain everlasting happiness. 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 – 8 July – “The Month of the Precious Blood”
An Old Morning Prayer – Excerpt From The Blossoms of the Cross — 1894 The Sisters of St Joseph
I rise In God’s strength, In God’s power, In the Agony of Christ, In the Cross of Christ, In Christ’s Precious Blood, These will sustain me against my enemies, visible and invisible. I rise in the blessing of Christ which my dearest Jesus left to the whole world. Protect me, All-Holy Trinity, God the Father, Who created me, God, the Son, Who redeemed me in His Precious Blood, God, the Holy Ghost, Who sanctified me in Holy Baptism. God, the Father, I give myself to Thee! God, the Son, I commend myself to Thee! God, the Holy Ghost, teach me! Mary, Mother of God, assist me! All you Saints of God, pray for me! All you Holy Angels, protect me! The Cross of Christ preserve me! Amen
Saint of the Day – 8 July – St Edgar the Peaceful (c 943-975) King of the English, faithful son and Defender of the Church, Protector and Founder of Monasteries and Churches, a fair and wise ruler., always with the support of St Dunstan and the Bishops. Born in 943 or 944 in Wessex, England and died on 8 July 975 in Winchester, Wessex, England of natural causes. Patronage – kings, widowers. Also known as – Eadgar the Peaceful, Edgar the Peaceable, Edgar I, Edgar of England.
Edgar was King of England from 959 until his death. He was the younger son of Edmund I and St Elgiva of Shaftesbury and came to the throne as a teenager, following the death of his older brother Eadwig. As King, Edgar further consolidated the political unity achieved by his predecessors, with his reign being noted for its relative stability. His most trusted advisor was St Dunstan (909-988, who he recalled from exile and made Archbishop of Canterbury. The pinnacle of Edgar’s reign was his coronation at Bath in 973, which was organised by St Dunstan and forms the pattern for the current coronation ceremony in England. After his death he was succeeded by his son Edward.
One of Edgar’s first actions was to recall St Dunstan from exile and have him made Bishop of Worcester (and subsequently Bishop of London and later, Archbishop of Canterbury). St Dunstan remained Edgar’s advisor throughout his reign, by his advice and support, becoming the virtual Prime Minister. England underwent a religious revival during Edgar’s reign, with the spiritual and secular assistance of his friend, St Dunstan, as well as Archbishop Oswald of York and Bishop Aethelwold of Wincheste. Edgar founded Abbeys, encouraged the Benedictine Monks and their Rule and enacted penalties for nonpayment of tithes and Peter’s Pence, always encouraging faithful adherenceto the Pope.
Edgar was efficient and unusually tolerant of local customs; while he spent much time in military actions, his reign was a peaceful period for civilians. By the end of his reign, England was sufficiently unified, in that it was unlikely to regress back to a state of division among rival kingships. Indeed, an early eleventh century King Cnut the Great states in a letter to his subjects that “it is my will that all the nation, Ecclesiastical and lay, shall steadfastly observe Edgar’s laws, which all men have chosen and sworn at Oxford.”
Edgar was crowned at Bath and along with his wife Ælfthryth was anointed, setting a precedent for a coronation of a Queen in England itself. Edgar’s Coronation did not happen until 973 (just two years before his death), in an imperial ceremony planned, not as the initiation but as the culmination of his reign. This service was devised, written and arranged by St Dunstan himself and celebrated with a poem in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, forms the basis of the present-day British Coronation ceremony.
When Peaceful Edgar ruled the land He had eight kings at his command; How did he tame this royal band? Ah, he was knowing! These kings he did not subjugate And make them draw his coach of state Like Tamburlaine; he built an eight And taught them rowing
The symbolic Coronation was an important step – other Kings of Britain came and gave their allegiance to Edgar shortly afterwards, at Chester. Six kings in Britain, including the King of Scots and the King of Strathclyde, pledged their faith that they would be the King’s liege-men on land and sea. Later chroniclers made the kings into eight, all plying the oars of Edgar’s state barge on the River Dee.
Edgar died on 8 July 975 at Winchester, Hampshire. He left behind Edward, who was probably his illegitimate son by Æthelflæd and Æthelred, the younger, the child of his wife Ælfthryth. He was succeeded by Edward. Edgar also had a possibly illegitimate daughter by Wulfthryth, who later became Abbess of Wilton. She was joined there by her daughter, Edith of Wilton, who lived there as a nun until her death. Both women were later regarded as Saints.
St Landrada Bl Mancius Araki Kyuzaburo St Morwenna St Pancras of Taormina Bl Peter the Hermit St Procopius of Ceasarea St Sunniva of Bergen St Thibaud de Marly St Totnan of Thuringia
Abrahamite Monks/Martyrs of Constantinople: A group of Monks in a Monastery founded by Saint Abraham of Ephesus. Martyred in the iconoclast persecutions of Emperor Theophilus. In c 835 in Constantinople.
Martyrs of Shanxi – 7 Saints: In 1898 seven sisters of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary were sent to the Shanxi Diocese in China to serve the poor in hospitals and care for the unwanted or other destitutes in orphanages. They were: • Anne-Catherine Dierks • Anne-Francoise Moreau • Clelia Nanetti • Irma Grivot • Jeanne-Marie Kuergin • Marianna Giuliani • Pauline Jeuris There they all died in one of the periodic persecutions against foreign missionaries. They were beheaded on 9 July 1900 at Taiyuanfu, China- Canonisedon 24 November 1946 by Pope Pius XII.
Martyrs of Syrmium – 5 Saints: Five Christians Martyred together for their faith. We know nothing else about them but the names – Cecilia, Eperentius, Eraclius, Sostratus and Spirus. They were martyred in the 4th century in Syrmium, Pannonia (modern Serbia).