One Minute Reflection – 16 December – “The Month of the Divine Infant and the Immaculate Conception” – Friday of Ember Week in Advent – 2 Corinthians 1:3-7, Matthew 16:24-27 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/
“If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow Me.” – Matthew 16:24
REFLECTION – “What does this mean, “take up a cross?” It means, he will bear with whatever is troublesome and in this very act, he will be following Me.
When he has begun to follow me, according to My teaching and precepts, he will find many people contradicting him and standing in his way, many who not only deride but even persecute him.
Moreover, this is true, not only of pagans who are outside the Church but also of those, who seem to be in it visibly but are outside of it because of the perversity of their deeds.
Although these glory, in merely the title of Christian, they continually persecute faithful Christians.
Such belong to the members of the Church in the same way, that bad blood is in the body.
Therefore, if you wish to follow Christ, do not delay in carrying His Cross, tolerate sinners but do not yield to them.
Do not let the false happiness of the wicked corrupt you.
You do well to despise all things for the sake of Christ, in order that you may be fit for His companionship.”- St Caesarius of Arles (470-543) Bishop of Arles and Father of the Church – (Sermons, 159).
PRAYER – Put forth Thy power, O Lord, we beseech Thee and come that those who trust in Thy goodness may soon be delivered from all harm. Who livest and reignest with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).