Thought for the Day – 22 March – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Presence of God
“A man who lives always in the Presence of God. cannot sin. When we find ourselves in the presence of a high-ranking worldly personality, do we dare to behave any other way but correctly and respectfuly? How should we dare then to behave in any other fashion, in the Presence of the Infinite Majesty of God, our Creator and Redeemer, Who will one day also be our Judge?! Could He not, in a single instant, snap the thread of our mortal life and call us before His judgement-seat, even while we are in the act of offending Him?!
Let us remember St Paul’s stern warning: “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Heb 10-:31). Let us remain always in the Presence of God and we shall be at peace and strong in His grace.”
Quote/s of the Day – 22 March – Wednesday of the Fourth Week in Lent and the Memorial of St Catherine of Genoa (1447-1510)
“We must not wish anything other than what happens from moment to moment, all the while, however, exercising ourselves in goodness.”
“And when I hear it said, that God is good and He will pardon us and then see, that men cease not from evil-doing, oh, how it grieves me! The Infinite Goodness with which God communicates with us, sinners as we are, should constantly make us love and serve Him better but we, on the contrary, instead of seeing in His Goodness an obligation to please Him, convert it into an excuse for sin, which will, of a certainty, lead in the end, to our deeper condemnation.”
“I see clearly with the interior eye, that the sweet God loves, with a pure love, the creature that He has created and has a HATRED for nothing but SIN, which is more opposed to Him, than can be thought or imagined.”
Our Lenten Journey with St Francis de Sales – 22 March – Wednesday of the Fourth Week in Lent – Isaias 1:16-19, John 9:1-38 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/
“If sin abounds in malice to destroy, grace superabounds to repair.” Romans 5:20
“One thing I know that whereas I was blind. now I see.” John 9:25
THE MERCY OF GOD ON THE RETURN OF A SINNER St Francis de Sales (1567-1622) Doctor Caritas
“THE ENTRANCE OF SIN, takes away life from the heart and from all its good works; the entrance of grace, restores life to the heart and to all its good works. A severe winter kills the plants of the field, so that, were it to continue always, they should remain forever dead.
Sin, the sad and fearful winter of the soul, kills the holy works which it finds there and, were it to continue always, never should life or vigour return. But as, on the approach of lovely spring, not only the new seeds which we cast into the earth, shoot up and bud, under the influence of this mild season of fecundity, every one according to its kind but also the old plants, which the bitterness of the preceding winter had wasted and withered, grow green again and take back their former life.
So sin being destroyed,and the grace of Divine Love coming back to the soul, not only the new affections, which the return of the sacred springtime brings, germinate and produce many merits and benedictions but also, the works faded away under the harshness of the winter of past sin, being delivered from their mortal enemy and reinvigorated and, as it were, resuscitated, flourish anew and fructify in merits for eternal life. …
God has promised an eternal recompense to the works of the just man but, if the just man turn away from His Justice by sin, God will no longer remember his justices, or the good works which he has done. But if, nevertheless, this poor man, after falling into sin, rises again and returns to Divine Love by penance, God will no longer remember his sin and, if He will no longer remember his sin, He will then remember his preceding good works and the recompense they had deserved, since sin, which alone can take them away from the Divine Memory, is effaced, abolished and annihilated.” – (Consoling Thoughts on God and Providence).
One Minute Reflection – 22 March – Wednesday of the Fourth Week in Lent and the Memorial of St Isidore the Farmer (c 1070 -1130) Confessor – Isaias 1:16-19, John 9:1-38 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/
“I am the light of the world. When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay of the spittle and spread the clay upon his eyes,” – John 9:5-6
REFLECTION – “To the man who had been blind from birth He gave sight, not by means of a word but by an outward action, doing this, not without a purpose or because it so happened but that He might show forth, the Hand of God which, at the beginning had moulded man. And, therefore, when His disciples asked Him, for what cause the man had been born blind, whether for his own or his parents’ faults, He replied: “Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents,but that the Works of God, should be made manifest in him.” Now the Work of God is the fashioning of man. For, as Scripture says, He made [man] by a kind of process: “And the Lord took clay from the earth and formed man.” (Gn 2:7). Wherefore also, the Lord spat on the ground and made clay and smeared it upon the eyes, pointing to the original fashioning, how it was effected and manifesting the Hand of God to those who can understand, by what [Hand] man was formed out of the dust…
And, inasmuch, as man, with respect to that formation which, after Adam, had fallen into transgression, needed the layer of regeneration, [the Lord] said to him [upon whom He had conferred sight], after He had smeared his eyes with the clay: “Go to Siloam and wash,” thus restoring to him, both [his perfect] confirmation and that regeneration which took place, by means of the smearing. And so, when he had washed, he emerged seeing that he might both know Him Who had fashioned him and might learn [to know] Him, Who has conferred life upon him …
But He, the very same Who formed Adam at the beginning, with Whom also the Father spoke, [saying], “Let Us make man after Our Image and Likeness,” revealing Himself in these last times to men, formed visual organs for him, who had been blind, [in that body which he had derived] from Adam.” – St Irenaeus (130-202) Bishop, Martyr, Theologian, Father of the Church (Against Heresies, V, 15, 2-4).
PRAYER – Grant us, we beseech Thee, Almighty God, through the intercession of the blessed Confessor Isidore, so to acknowledge Thee, the only true God and Jesus Christ Whom Thou have sent, that we may be found worthy to be forever numbered among the sheep who hear His Voice.Through the same 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)Through the same 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 – 22 March – Wednesday of the Fourth Week in Lent
Grant us Thy Light, O Lord By The Venerable St Bede (673-735) Father and Doctor of the Church
Grant us Thy Light, O Lord, so that the darkness of our hearts, may wholly pass away and we may come at last, to the Light of Christ. For Christ is that Morning Star, Who, when the night of this world has passed, brings to His Saints, the promised Light of Life and opens to them, everlasting day. Amen.
Saint of the Day – 22 March – Blessed Hugolinus Zefferini OSA (c1320-1367) Priest, Friar of the Hermits of St Augustine, Hermit, Miracle-worker. Born in c1320 in Cortona, Arezzo, Italy and died in 1367 of natural causes. Also known as – Hugolinus of Cortona, Hugolinus Zephyrini, Hugolino, Ugolino. Patronage – Cortona, Italy (chosen by the citizeins in 1508). Blessed Hugolinus was Beatified in 1804 by Pope Pius VII (cultus confirmed).
Hugolinus was born into the noble Zefferini family. Whilst still a baby, his family were forced to flee Cortona due to civil unrest and strife. They moved to Mantua where, in time, Hugolinus became a Page in the Court of the Gonzagas.
But Hugolinus found himself extremely unhappy in the worldly and often dissapated life of the Court. He felt a great desire to give himself to the Lord in the religious life.
In 1336, Hugolinus joined the Augustinian Friars at the Monastery of St Agnes in Mantua. After his studies he was Ordained to the Priesthood. He lived a holy life within the Monastery in Mantua for 18 years but felt a calling to the solitary life and a closer union with his Creator. His gentle and kind nature endeared him to his brethren Friars and to all who knew him.
Obtaining permission, he returned to his hometown of Cortona and devoted himself to a life of prayer and contemplation as a Hermit. His holiness attracted many to attend him for spiritual guidance and for his prayers for their illnesses and he thus became greatly loved by all.
He died in 1367 and his body was enshrined in the Church of St Agostino in Corona, where many miracles occured. He was Beatified by his cultus being confirmed in 1804 by Pope Pius VII.
St Callinica of Galatia St Darerca of Ireland St Deghitche
St Epaphroditus of Terracina (1st Century) First Bishop of Terracina, Italy, Missionary, Evangelist, Disciple of the Apostles, Friend and Envoy of St Paul Apostle. St Hippolytus’ list of the Seventy Disciples includes “Epaphroditus, Bishop of Andriace.” The Roman Martyrology reads: “At Terracina, St Epaphroditus, a disciple of the Apostles, who was Consecrated Bishop of that City by the blessed Apostle Peter.” Biography: https://anastpaul.com/2022/03/22/saint-of-the-day-22-march-saint-epaphroditus-of-terracina-1st-century/
St Failbhe of Iona St Harlindis of Arland Blessed Hugolinus Zefferini OSA (c1320-1367) Priest, Hermit St Lea of Rome
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