Thought for the Day – 7 May – The Humility of Mary

Thought for the Day – 7 May – “Mary’s Month” Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Humility of Mary

“Unfortunately, we often look for our share of glory on earth.
We wish to appear to others, not only at our true value but much more than we are really worth.
We imagine that the gifts and qualities which God has given us, belong to ourselves, whereas they are entirely His.

We like to put up a good appearance to win praise and renown – in other words, we want to have our reward upon this earth.
We should remember, however, that if we look for our reward now, we shall not have it in Heaven.

God sees when our motives in doing good are distorted and, when we appear before His judgement throne, He will say to us: “You have received your reward” (Cf Mt 6:2).

Let us be humble like Mary.
Let us make God’s glory, rather than our own satisfaction, the object of our actions.
It will sometimes happen that men will misunderstand us, perhaps even insult us.
We are not forbidden to defend ourselves and explain our position.
We may not have the heroic virtue of St Francis de Sales, who remained silent when he was caluminated.
But we should not be too disturbed by lack of understanding or slander, nor should we be too elated by flattery.
Only one thing should count with us and that is, the testimony of a good conscience before God.
Everything else is passing and futile.

Our humility will be tested by the inevitable opposition, sometimes jealous and malicious, which we shall experience on the part of other men.
On these occasions, we shall see if we are really meek and humble of heart, like Jesus and our Blessed Mother.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci



Quote/s of the Day – 7 May – “Love one another as I have loved you” – John 15:12

Quote/s of the Day – 7 May – “Mary’s Month” – Friday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: Acts 15:22-31, Psalm 57:8-12, John 15:12-17

“Love one another as I have loved you”

John 15:12

“Someone who shows no clemency,
who is not clothed with the bowels of mercy and tears,
no matter what sort of student he is in spirituality,
such a one, does not fulfil the law of Christ.”

St Jerome (343-420)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“My brothers, Christ made love the stairway
that would enable all Christians
to climb to heaven.
Hold fast to it, therefore, in all sincerity,
give one another practical proof of it
and by your progress in it,
make your ascent together.”

St Fulgentius of Ruspe (460-533) Bishop

“Love is watchful.
Sleeping, it does not slumber.
Wearied, it is not tired.
Pressed, it is not straitened.
Alarmed, it is not confused
but like a living flame,
a burning torch,
it forces its way upward
and passes unharmed
through every obstacle.”

“Nothing is sweeter than love,
nothing stronger or higher or wider;
nothing is more pleasant, nothing fuller
and nothing better in heaven or on earth,
for love is born of God
and cannot rest except in God,
Who is above all created things.”

Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471)

Posted in "Follow Me", QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 7 May – “You have not chosen me but I have chosen you and have appointed you” … John 15:16

One Minute Reflection – 7 May – “Mary’s Month” – Friday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: Acts 15:22-31, Psalm 57:8-12, John 15:12-17

“You have not chosen me but I have chosen you and have appointed you” … John 15:16

REFLECTION – “Just as the head and body of a man, form one single man, so the Son of the Virgin and those He has chosen to be His members, form a single man and the one Son of Man. Christ, is whole and entire, head and body, say the Scriptures, since all the members form one body, which, with its Head, is one Son of Man and He, with the Son of God, is one Son of God, who Himself, with God, is one God. Therefore, the whole body with its Head is Son of Man, Son of God and God. This is the explanation of the Lord’s words – Father, I desire that as you and I are one, so they may be one with us.

And so, according to this well-known reading of Scripture, neither the body without the head, nor the Head without the body, nor the Head and body without God, make the whole Christ. When all are united with God, they become one God. The Son of God is one with God by nature, the Son of Man is one with Him in His person; we, His body, are one with Him sacramentally. Consequently, those, who by faith, are spiritual members of Christ, can truly say that they are what He is – the Son of God and God Himself. But what Christ is, by His nature, we are as His partners, what He is of Himself in all fullness, we are as participants. Finally, what the Son of God is by generation, His members are by adoption, according to the text – As sons you have received the Spirit of adoption, enabling you to cry, Abba, Father. …

By the Spirit, from the womb of the Virgin, was born our Head, the Son of Man and by the same Spirit, in the waters of Baptism, we are reborn as His body and as sons of God. And just as He was born without any sin, so we are reborn in the forgiveness of all our sins. As on the cross, He bore the sum total of the whole body’s sins in His own physical body, so He gave His members the grace of rebirth, in order that no sin might be imputed to His mystical body.” – Blessed Isaac of Stella O.Cist.(c 1100 – c 1170) Cistercian Monk, Abbot, Theologian, Philosopher – An excerpt from his Sermon 42

PRAYER – Almighty God and Father, You gave us a new birth in holy Baptism and a new life in Your Son, who first loved us and gave His life for us. Grant us, we pray, the grace to love all as He did and bear much fruit, always striving after what He has taught who goes ahead of us, to lead us to You. May the prayers of His beloved Mother and ours, grant us help and inspiration as we travel the road to eternal life. Through Christ our Lord, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God now and for all eternity, amen.


Our Morning Offering – 7 May – Mary, my Good Mother

Our Morning Offering – 7 May – “Mary’s Month” – Friday of the F1fth Week of Easter

Mary, my Good Mother
By St Marcellin Champagnat (1789-1840)
Founder of the Marist Brothers

Mary, my Good Mother,
I am called here to do good.
I can achieve nothing
without the assistance
of your divine Son,
and yours as well.
This is why I ask you to help me.
I ask you to be with me,
directing my hands,
my words,
my heart,
my whole person.
And when I am faced with some difficulties,
Good Mother, I will entrust them to you
though I myself will do all that depends on me.
I offer and commend to you,
all that will be entrusted to me this day.

Posted in MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 7 May – Saint Flavia Domitilla of Terracina (1st Century) Virgin and Martyr

Saint of the Day – 7 May – Saint Flavia Domitilla of Terracina (1st Century) Virgin and Martyr.

The Roman Martyrology states of her today: “At Terracina, in Campania, the birthday of blessed Flavia Domitilla, Virgin and Martyr, niece of the Consul Flavius Clemens. She received the religious veil at the hands of St Clement and in the persecution of Domitian, was exiled with many others to the island of Pontia, where she endured a long Martyrdom for Christ. Taken afterwards to Terracina, she converted many to the faith of Christ by her teaching and miracles. The judge ordered the chamber in which she was, with the virgins Euphrosina and Theodora, to be set on fire and she thus consummated her glorious Martyrdom. She is also mentioned with the holy Martyrs Nereus and Achilleus, on the 12th of this month.”

Sts Euphrosina and Theodora with St Flavia in the centre

Flavia was niece to the consul and Martyr St Flavius Clemens, being the daughter of his sister as Eusebius testifies; “consequently she was little niece of the Emperor Domitian, who, having put to death her illustrious uncle, banished her for her faith into Pontia. There she lived with her holy eunuchs, Nereus and Achilleus, in exercises of devotion, they all dwelling in separate cells which remained standing three hundred years after. “

Sts Nereus and Achilleus with St Flavia

St.Jerome tells us, that St Paula, going from Rome to Jerusalem, took this is and in her way, visited them with respect and devotion,and, by the sight of them, was animated with fervour. That holy Father , St Jerome, calls her banishment ,a long Martyrdom.

The acts of Sts Nereus and Achilleu say ,that she returned to Terracina and was there burnt under Trajan because she refused to sacrifice to idols. Her relics are kept together with those of Sts Nereus and Achilleus; who, though her servants here on earth, enjoy an equal honour and condition with her, in glory.

This royal virgin found true happiness and joy in suffering for virtue, whilst worldly pomp and honours are only masks which often cover the basest slavery,and much inward bitterness. Sinners who seem the most fortunate in the eyes of the world, feel in their own breasts, frequent returns of fear, anxiety and remorse. They are only enemies to solitude and retirement and, to all serious and calm reflection because they cannot bear to look into themselves and tremble at the very sight of their own frightful wounds. To turn their eyes from themselves, they study to drown their faculties in a hurry of dissipation, business, or diversion. Nay, though nauseated and tired with a dull and tasteless repetition of follies, they choose to repeat them still, for fear of being left alone, at liberty to think of themselves. But what becomes of them when sickness, disasters, or a wakeful hour forces them to take a view of their own miserable state and the dangers which hang over them? Their gaudy show of happiness is merely exterior and only imposes upon others but their pangs and agonies, are interior, these they themselves feel.

The servant of God, who in his sweet love enjoys an inward peace and comfort which the whole world cannot rob him of, carries his paradise within his own breast, whatever storms hover about him. – Fr Alban Butler (1711–1773).

Posted in MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY

Apparition of the Holy Cross over Jerusalem and Memorials of the Saints – 7 May

Friday of the Fifth Week of Easter +2021

Apparition of the Holy Cross over Jerusalem: Commemorates the appearance on 7 May 351, Pentecost that year, of a luminous image of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem. It stretched from Mount Golgotha to the Mount of Olives (about two miles / three kilometers), was brighter than the sun, lasted several hours and was seen by the entire City. It led to many conversions and was reported in a letter attributed to Saint Cyril of Jerusalem.

St Abba

St Agostino Roscelli ( 1818–1902) Priest, Founder of the Institute of Sisters of the Immaculata

Blessed Alberto of Bergamo OP (1214-1279) Layman, Widow, Apostle of Charity, Pilgrim, Third Order Dominican. Beatified by Pope Benedict IV in 1748.
His Life:

Bl Agnellus of Pisa OFM (c 1195-1236)
Bl Antonio de Agramunt
St Augustine of Nicomedia
St Augustus of Nicomedia
St Cerenico of Spoleto
St Domitian of Huy
St Duje
St Flavia Domitilla of Terracina (1st Century) Virgin Martyr
St Flavius of Nicomedia
Bl Francesco Paleari
Bl Gisela of Ungarn
Bl Jan Eugeniusz Bajewski
St John of Beverley
St Juvenal of Benevento
St Maurelius of Voghenza-Ferrara
Bl Miqael of Ulompo
St Peter of Pavia
St Placid of Autun
St Quadratus of Herbipolis
St Quadratus of Nicomedia

St Rose Venerini MPV (1656-1728) Religious, Foundress of the Religious Teachers Venerini (the Venerini Sisters).
About St Rose:

St Serenicus of Hyesmes
St Serenus of Hyesmes
Bl Villanus of Gubbio


Thought for the Day – 6 May – The Virginal Purity of Mary

Thought for the Day – 6 May – “Mary’s Month” Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Virginal Purity of Mary

“Purity is the most beautiful of virtues.
It is a virtue which is admired by God and by men, even by the most corrupt.
It is often said, that it makes us like the angels but in fact, looking at it in a particular way, it makes us superior to the angels.
Since they have no bodies, the angels cannot sin against purity, while we have to fight many battles and overcome many temptations, in order to preserve our chastity.
Jesus had a very special love for this virtue.
He chose to be born of a virgin and, He showed a particular affection for St John, who was a dedicated celibate.
On one occasion, He placed His Hands on the head of a little child and said: “Unless you turn and become like little children, you will not enter into the kingdom of Heaven “(Mt:18.3)

Unfortunately, the virtue of purity is as fragile as it is beautiful.
It can be lost in a single moment of weakness.
We must love ths virtue as Mary loved it.
We must be prepared to make any sacrifice, even the most heroic, rather than lose it.
Worldly charm and beauty attract us and the devil works hard to control our imagination and our affections.
On account of the disturbance of original sin, the flesh is like a terrible weight retarding our spiritual advancement.
Sometimes it seems as if it is irresistibly drawing us towards the abyss of impurity.
But we need not be dragged down, if we are prepared to fly from the occasions of sin and to pray to God and to our heavenly Mother for her intercession.
We must always act at once, for there is no time to dally.
It is fatal to remain inactive and to allow temptation to make its way into our soul.
This kind of battle, said St Francis de Sales, is won only by soldiers who flee.
We must fly from the occasions of sin, no matter what sacrifice this entails.
Jesus has warned us, that it is better to enter Heaven without a hand or a foot, than to be cast into hell.

We know the remedies – instant flight, heroic sacrifice and constant prayer.
We can leave the rest to the grace of God and to the maternal protection of Mary.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci



Quote/s of the Day – 6 May – “You shall love the Lord your God with ALL your heart”

Quote/s of the Day – 6 May – “Mary’s Month” – Thursday of the Fifth Week of Easter. Readings: First: Acts 15: 7-21; Psalm: Psalms 96: 1-2a, 2b-3, 10; Gospel: John 15: 9-1

“As the Father hath loved me,
I also have loved you.
Abide in my love.”

John 15:9

“You shall love the Lord your God
with ALL your heart”

Mark 12:30

“Remember God
more often
than you breathe!”

St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“Choose the opposition of the whole world,
rather than offend Jesus.
Of all those who are dear to you,
let Him be your special love.
Let all things be loved,
for the sake of Jesus
but Jesus, for His own sake.”

Thomas à Kempis CRSA (1380-1471)

(Book 2 Ch 8)

“My dear souls, let us recognise, I pray you,
Christ’s infinite charity towards us
in the institution of this Sacrament of the Eucharist.
In order that our love be a spiritual love,
He wills a new heart, a new love, a new spirit for us.
It is not with a carnal heart but with a spiritual one,
that Christ has loved us with a gratuitous love,
a supreme and most ardent love,
by way of pure grace and charity.
Ah! One needs to love Him back
with one’s whole, whole, whole,
living, living, living and true, true, true heart!!”

St Lawrence of Brindisi(1559-1619)
Apostolic Doctor of the Church

“By giving yourself to God,
you not only receive Himself in exchange
but, eternal life as well!”

St Francis de Sales (1567-1622)
Doctor Caritatis

If a man wants to know if
he is living a good Christian life,
therefore, all he has to do
is ask himself if he loves God
above everything
and his neighbour as himself.
… Love gives wings to his feet
and pours enthusiasm
and fervour into his heart.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971


One Minute Reflection – 6 May – “Abide in my love.” – John 15:9

One Minute Reflection – 6 May – “IMary’s Month” – Thursday of the Fifth Week of Easter. Readings: First: Acts 15: 7-21; Psalm: Psalms 96: 1-2a, 2b-3, 10; Gospel: John 15: 9-11 and the Memorial of St John the Evangelist at the Latin Gate

“Abide in my love.” – John 15:9

REFLECTION – “You may well believe that there is no-one in the world, neither friend nor brother, father or mother, husband or betrothed who loves you more than your God loves you. Divine grace is that treasure of great price, that boundless treasure of which the wise man speaks, which, as soon as we use it, makes us participants in friendship with God (cf. Wis 7:14). In God’s sight we were only miserable creatures, poor servants and now, we become friends, beloved friends of our Creator himself!

Precisely so as to make us more at ease with Him, He emptied Himself (cf. Phil 2:7), so to speak, humbling Himself, so far, as to become man, in order to converse familiarly with men (cf. Bar 3:38).8). Even this was not enough, He became a child, became poor, he even let Himself be put to death on a cross, by a miscarriage of justice, before a whole people. Even more, He went so far as to put Himself under the species of bread, so as to make Himself our companion each day and unite Himself, in close union with each one of us – “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood,” He said, “remains in me and I in him” (Jn 6:56). In sum, one could say, that He has no love but for you, He loves you so much.

Therefore, it is Him you should love and no other. Of Him you could and should say “My Beloved is mine and I am his” (Sg 2:16); my God has given Himself without reserve and, without reserve, I give myself to Him; He has chosen me as the object of His tenderness and He, among thousands, He, the radiant and ruddy one (Sg 5:10), so loveable and so loving, He is the chosen of my heart, the only one I wish to love.”- St Alphonsus Maria de Liguori (1696-1787) Bishop and Most Zealous Doctor of the Church – The manner of conversing with God, trans. from the Italian

PRAYER – In Your gentle mercy Lord, guide our wayward hearts, for we know that left to ourselves, we cannot do Your will. Almighty God, turn our hearts to Yourself, so that we, seeking the one thing ne cessary, may worship You in spirit and in truth. We give You thanks for our faith, increase our faith O our God! May the prayers of St John and all your saints and the Virgin Mary, Queen of All Saints, obtain the gift of humility and fidelity for us and for every believer, so that our prayer may always be genuine and pleasing to the Lord. Through Christ our Lord and Redeemer, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.


Our Morning Offering – 6 May – Mother of Mercy

Our Morning Offering – 6 May – “IMary’s Month” – Thursday of the Fifth week of Easter

Mother of Mercy
By St Bonaventure (1217-1274)
Seraphic Doctor

Virgin full of goodness,
Mother of Mercy,
I entrust to you my body and soul,
my thoughts, my actions,
my life and my death.
O my Queen, help me,
and deliver me from all
the snares of the devil.
Obtain for me the grace
of loving my Lord Jesus Christ,
your Son,
with a true and perfect love,
and after Him, O Mary,
to love you with all my heart
and above all things.


Saint of the Day – 6 May – St John the Evangelist before the Latin Gate.

Saint of the Day – 6 May – St John the Evangelist before the Latin Gate. St John the Apostle and Evangelist – “The Disciple whom Jesus Loved” – (died c 101).

The Roman Martyrology States of this feast today: “At Rome, the feast of St John before the Latin Gate. Being bound and brought to Rome fro Ephesus by the order of Domisian, he was condemned by the Senate to be cast, near the said gate, into a vessel of boiling oil, from which he came out more healthy nd vigorous than before.”

“The seething oil was changed for him into an invigorating bath and the Saint came out more refreshed than when he had entered the cauldron.”

Abbot Dom Prosper Gueranger (1805-1875) relates the story for us.

“The Beloved Disciple John, whom we saw standing near the crib of the Babe of Bethlehem, comes before us again today and this time, he is paying his delighted homage to the glorious Conqueror of death and hell. Like Philip and James, he too is clad in the scarlet robe of martyrdom. The month of May, so rich in saints, was to be graced with the Palm of St John.

Salome one day presented her two sons to Jesus,and, with a mother’s ambition, had asked Him to grant them the highest places in His kingdom. The Saviour, in His reply, spoke of the Chalice which He Himself had to drink,and foretold ,that these two Disciples would also drink of it. The elder, James the Greater, was the first to give His Master this proof of his love; we shall celebrate his victory when the sun is in Leo; it was today that John, the younger Brother, offered his life in testimony of Jesus’ Divinity.

But the Martyrdom of such an Apostle, called for a scene worthy of the event. Asia Minor, which his zeal had evangelised, was not a sufficiently glorious land for such a combat. Rome, whither Peter had transferred his Chair and where he died on his cross and where Paul had bowed down his venerable head beneath the sword, Rome alone deserved the honour of seeing the Beloved Disciple march onto Martyrdom, with that dignity and sweetness which are the characteristics of this veteran of the Apostolic College.

Domitian was then Emperor, the tyrant over Rome and the world. Whether it were that John undertook this journey of his own free choice and from a wish to visit the Mother-Church, or .that he was led thither bound with chains, in obedience to an imperial edict, John, the august founder of the Seven Churches of Asia Minor, appeared before the Tribunal of pagan Rome. He was convicted of having propagated, in a vast province of the Empire, the worship of a Jew that had been Crucified under Pontius Pilate. He was a superstitious and rebellious man and it was time to rid Asia of his presence. He was, therefore, sentenced to an ignominious and cruel death. He had somehow escaped Nero’s power but he should not elude the vengeance of Caesar Domitian!

A huge cauldron of boiling oil was prepared in front of the Latin Gate. The sentence ordered that the preacher of Christ be plunged into this bath. The hour was come for the second son of Salome ,to partake of his Master’s Chalice. John’s heart leaped with joy, at the thought that he, the most dear to Jesus and yet, the only Apostle that had not suffered death for Him, was, at last, permitted to give Him this earnest of his love.

LeBrun, Martyrdom of St John Evangelist at Porta Latina

After cruelly scourging him, the executioners seize dthe old man and threw him into the cauldron but, lo! the boiling liquid had lost all its heat, the Apostle felt no scalding, on the contrary,, when they took him out again, he felt all the vigour of his youthful years restored to him. The Praetor’s cruelty was foiled,and John, the Martyr in desire, was to be left to the Church for some few years longer.

An imperial decree banished him to the rugged Isle of Patmos, where God revealed to him, the future of the Church, even to the end of time.

St John on Patmos

The Church of Rome, which counts the abode and Martyrdom of St John as one of her most glorious memories, has marked, with a Basilica, the spot where the Apostle bore his noble testimony to the Christian Faith. This Basilica stands near the Latin Gate and gives a title to one of the Cardinals.” 

O singular happiness of St John to have stood under the Cross of Christ, so near His divine person, when the other disciples had all forsaken Him! O extraordinary privilege, to have suffered Martyrdom in the person of Jesus and been eye-witness of all He did or endured and of all that happened to Him, in that great sacrifice and mystery. Here he drank of his cup; this was truly a Martyrdom and our Saviour exempted all those who had assisted at the Martyrdom of His Cross, from suffering death by the hands of persecutors. St John, nevertheless, received also the crown of this second Martyrdom, to which the sacrifice of his will, was not wanting but only the execution.


Santa Maria Della Pace / Our Lady of Peace in the Church of Our Lady of Peace, Rome (1483) and Memorials of the Saints – 6 May

Thursday of the Fifth Week of Easter +2021

Santa Maria Della Pace / Our Lady of Peace in the Church of Our Lady of Peace, Rome (also called Our Lady of Miracles) (1483) – 6 May:

The Abbot Orsini wrote: “It is related ,that in the year 1483, a man who had lost his money by gaming, after blaspheming at this picture, gave it four stabs with a dagger and that it bled so copiously, that the miracle was at once divulged all over the City. This picture is still preserved in the Church of Our Lady of Peace, where it is to be seen at the high Altar, framed in marble.”

The present cCurch of Our Lady of Peace, or Santa Maria Della Pace, in Rome, Italy, is still standing. It was built by Pope Sixtus IV after the City of Rome had been under siege by the Duke of Calabria. The Pope had made a vow ,that he would build a new Church in Rome in honour of Our Lady , if peace would somehow be re-established between his Papal States and the Cities of Florence, Milan and Naples. Construction actually started in 1482 as an act of thanksgiving to the Blessed Virgin but the work was not completed until the time of Pope Innocent VIII (1432-1492) who was Pope from 1484 until his death.
According to various traditions, the particular site for the Church was chosen because of an incident, in which a drunken soldier had stabbed a statue of the Madonna in the breast, at which the figure had started bleeding as if it were alive. There is also another legend that perhaps a stone was thrown at the image of Our Lady of Miracles, that currently hangs over the high Altar in the Church of Our Lady of Peace, which subsequently started bleeding. In any event, the Church was in fact built, on the foundations of an earlier Church, known as Saint Andrea de Aquarizariis.
The venerated painting of Our Lady of Miracles depicts the Blessed Virgin holding the Divine Child. It currently hangs over the high Altar at the Church, which was specifically designed by Carlo Maderno to display and enshrine the famous painting.

The now famous image was once believed to have been venerated in the portico of St Andrew’s of the Watercarriers. There is also another famous fresco inside the Church known as the Four Sibyls, which was painted by Raphael in the year 1514.

Santa Maria Della Pace in Rome

St John the Evangelist before the Latin Gate

St John’s Feast Day here:

St Acuta

Blessed Anna Rosa Gattorno (1831-1900) Wife, Mother, Widow, Religious, Foundress of the Daughters of St Anne, Stigmatist, Mystic.

Bl Anthony Middleton
Bl Bartolomeo Pucci-Franceschi
St Benedicta of Rome
St Colman Mac Ui Cluasigh of Cork
St Colman of Loch Eichin
St Dominic Savio
St Edbert of Lindisfarne
Bl Edward Jones
St Evodius of Antioch

St Francis-Xavier de Montmorency Laval (1623-1708) Bishop, Missionary
His Life:

St Heliodorus
Bl Henryk Kaczorowski
St James of Numidia
St Justus of Vienne
Bl Kazimierz Gostynski
St Lucius of Cyrene

Blessed Maria Catalina of Saint Rose Troiani (1813-1997) Virgin, Nun, Missionary, Founder of the Franciscan Missionaries of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Third Order Franciscan.
Her Story:

St Marianus of Lambesa
Bl Peter de Tornamira
St Petronax of Monte Cassino
St Protogenes of Syria
Bl Prudence Castori
St Theodotus of Kyrenia
St Venerius of Milan
St Venustus of Africa
St Venustus of Milan
Bl William Tandi


Thought for the Day – 5 May – Mary, Our Mother

Thought for the Day – 5 May – “Mary’s Month” Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Mary, Our Mother

“Mary is, at the same time, our loving and powerful Mother.
No matter how much earthly mothers love their sons and desire to help them, very often they cannot do so because, their love is limited.
It is not so with Mary.
Not only does she love us but, she also possesses great influence with her divine Son, Jesus.
We should have confidence in her, therefore and have recourse to her, in every spiritual or temporal need.
We may be certain that she will use her powers of intercession on our behalf.
Let us remember, however, to ask, first of all, for the spiritual favours which we need.
Later, we may ask, in a spirit of resignation to God’s Will, for temporal benefits and for release from worldly suffering.
If we acted otherwise, we should not be worthy sons of Mary, who endured all kinds of suffering for the sake of Jesus.

When we recite the Our Father, we say ‘Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven,‘ before we say ‘Deliver us from evil.’
If anyone refuses the cross, he shows that he does not love God because, he does not will what God wills for him.
We should remember that there is no affliction which does not come from God and, that nothing comes from God, which is not for our own good.

So let us ask Mary for everything which we desire but let us ask her, first of all to make us holy.
Devotion to Mary, as St Catherine of Siena assures us, is a mark of predestination..”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci



Quote/s of the Day – 5 May – Conversion

Quote/s of the Day – 5 May – Wednesday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: First: Acts 15: 1-6; Psalm: Psalms 122: 1-2, 3-4ab, 4cd-5; Gospel: John 15: 1-8 and the Memorial of the Conversdion of St Augustine

“Without Me you can do nothing”

John 15:5

“You do not know
when your last day may come.
You are an ingrate!
Why not use the day, today,
that God has given you
to repent?”

“What do you possess
if you possess not God?”

St Augustine (354-430)
Father & Doctor of Grace

“A saint is not someone, who never sins,
but one who sins less and less frequently
and gets up more and more quickly.”

St Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153)
Mellifluous Doctor

“Each day then, we ought to renew our resolutions
and arouse ourselves to fervour,
as though it were the first day
of our turning back to God.
We ought to say: “Help me, O Lord God,
in my good resolution
and in Your holy service.
Grant me now, this very day,
to begin perfectly,
for thus far I have done nothing.”
… Just men depend on the grace of God
rather than on their own wisdom
in keeping their resolutions.
In Him they confide every undertaking …”

Thomas à Kempis CRSA (1380-1471)

“A soul makes room for God
by wiping away all the smudges and smears of creatures,
by uniting its will perfectly to God’s,
for to love is to labour,
to divest and deprive oneself for God, of all that is not God .
When this is done,
the soul will be illumined by and transformed in God.”

St John of the Cross (1542-1591)
Mystical Doctor of the Church

Posted in ONE Minute REFLECTION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 5 May – “Remain in me as I remain in you ” … John 15:5

One Minute Reflection – 5 May – Wednesday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: First: Acts 15: 1-6; Psalm: Psalms 122: 1-2, 3-4ab, 4cd-5; Gospel: John 15: 1-8 and the Memorial of the Conversdion of St Augustine

“Remain in me as I remain in you ” … John 15:4

REFLECTION – “Whatever be the stage in which the soul is, its work, however, is never anything but a work of co-operation. The soul is not alone, God works in and with it, for He is ever the first Author of its progress.

Doubtless, at the outset, when the soul is yet encumbered with vices and evil habits, it must needs apply itself with virility and ardour to remove these obstacles, which are opposed to divine union. The co-operation that God requires of it, at this period, is particularly great and active and is revealed very clerly to the conscience. During this period, God grants sensible graces that uplift and encourage. But the soul experiences inward vicissitudes, it falls then rises up again; it labours, then rests; it takes breath again then goes forward on its way.

As far and in the measure as the soul advances and obstacles give way, the inner life becomes more homogeneous, more regular, more uniform; the action of God is felt to be more powerful because it is more free to act and because it meets with less resistance and more suppleness in the soul; then, we rapidly go forward in the path of perfection. … Our Lord has so clearly given us this fundamental doctrine: “I am the Vine, you are the branches; abide in me that you may bear fruit, for without me you can do nothing” (Jn 15:5). …

To imagine, then, that Christ will take upon Himself all the work would be a dangerous illusion but, to believe that we could do anything, whatsoever without Him, would be no less perilous. We must be convinced too, that our works are only of value by reason of our union with Jesus. ” – Blessed Columba Marmion (1858-1923) Abbot – The “instruments of good works” (Christ, the Ideal of the Monk

PRAYER – Holy God and Father, help us to discern through prayer and meditation what You truly want of us. Then enable us to offer it to You and indeed, to offer ourselves and all we have and all we are, to You. When You bring us sufferings to mould us closer and make us more like You, help us to accept them and offer them back to You. Following Your divine Son, let us pick up those crosses in peace and love. Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God and our mother, pray for us! St Aaugustinet, pray for us. Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God now and forever, amen.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARY'S MONTH, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning Offering – 5 May – Blessed Virgin Mary, Receive Our Gratitude

Our Morning Offering – 5 May – The Memorial of the Conversion of St Augustne of Hippo (354-430)

Blessed Virgin Mary,
Receive Our Gratitude
By St Augustine (354-430)
Father & Doctor of Grace

Blessed Virgin Mary,
who can worthily repay you
with praise and thanks
for having rescued a fallen world
by your generous consent!
Receive our gratitude
and by your prayers,
obtain the pardon of our sins.
Take our prayers into the Sanctuary of Heaven
and enable them to make our peace with God.
Holy Mary, help the miserable,
strengthen the discouraged,
comfort the sorrowful,
pray for your people,
plead for the clergy,
intercede for all women consecrated to God.
May all who venerate you
feel now your help and protection.
Be ready to help us when we pray
and bring back to us,
the answers to our prayers.
Make it your continual concern
to pray for the people of God,
for you were blessed by God
and were made worthy
to bear the Redeemer of the world,
Who lives and reigns forever.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 5 May – Feast of the Conversion of St Augustine (354-430)

Saint of the Day – 5 May – Feast of the Conversion of St Augustine (354-430) Bishop, Father and Doctor of Grace. Born on 13 November 354 at Tagaste, Numidia, North Africa (Souk-Ahras, Algeria) as Aurelius Augustinus Hipponensis and died on 28 August 430 at Hippo, North Africa, which date is his primary Feast day. The Augustinians celebrated today’s memorial on 24 April. St Augustine is the Patron of against sore eyes, against vermin, brewers, printers, theologians, 7 Dioceses, 7 Cities

The Roman Martyrology states of today’s memorial: “In Milan, the Conversion of St Augustine, Bishop and Doctor of the Church, whom the blessed Bishop St Ambrose instructed in the Catholic Faith and baptised on this day.”

The story of a soul’s journey to God is what we celebrate today in the feast of the Conversion of Saint Augustine. Or, perhaps, we might also say, the story of God’s tireless pursuit of His beloved and the attentiveness and openness of that soul at last to God’s love. Conversion, or the turning to God, is a movement that is possible for us at every moment of our journey – not simply once and forever but continually and ever more deeply.

During the Easter Vigil, on the night between 4 and 5 April 387, Augustine was baptised by Bishop Ambrose in the Cathedral of Milan ,together with his son, Adeodatus and a small group of friends, including the ‘brother of (his) heart,’ Alypius. Thus was brought to its happy end, the long and tiring journey of Augustine’s conversion to the Catholic faith. Augustine himself records, in Book 8 of the Confessions, the climactic moment in which he surrendered to God’s grace and was relieved of the doubts and fears, which had so long kept him imprisoned.

Baptism of St Augustine

How many things came together now, in one moment, to bring him freedom: – the story of a visiting countryman, the song of a young child, repeating Tolle Lege, Tolle LegeTake up, read. Take up, read, moving him to pick up St Paul’s Letter to the Romans, to find there, the response to his heart’s longing.

“I found myself weeping in the bitter sorrow of my heart.   And suddenly I heard a voice from a nearby house, a child’s voice, boy or girl I do not know – but it was sort of a sing song that repeated over and over again.   ‘Take and read, take and read.’   Wiping away my tears I took this as a divine command and opened the Scriptures and in silence read the passage on which my eyes first fell – ‘Not in rioting and drunkenness, not in debauchery and impurity, not in contention and envy but put on the Lord Jesus…’”

“How sweet did it suddenly become to me to be free of the sweets of folly -things that I once feared to lose, it was now joy to put away. You cast them forth from me, You the true and highest sweetness, You cast them forth and in their stead, You entered in, sweeter than every pleasure…” (Conf. 9, 1).

Certainly the story of Augustine’s conversion, numbers among the most well-known and most significant of all of Christian history – well-known, through Augustine’s own recording of it in his Confessions; significant, not only for the impact which his life of faith – as Monk, Bishop and Theologian – has had on the Catholic Church ever since but also, on the many men and women of every period, whose own personal lives have been altered by reading it and then hastening to go on and read and read and read the words of love of St Augustine!

Let us now thank God for the great light that shines out from St Augustine’s wisdom and humility and pray the Lord to give to us all, day after day, the conversion we need to lead us toward true life. And we ask our beloved Father and Doctor of Grace, St Augustine, to not forget us in his supplications and intercessions. as he gazes on the Face of God. Amen.


Nuestra Señora de Europa / Our Lady of Europe, Gibraltar (1492) and Memorials of the Saints – 5 May

Wednesday of the Fifth Week of Easter +2021

Nuestra Señora de Europa / Our Lady of Europe, Gibraltar (1492) – 5 May:

Together with Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, Our Lady is the Catholic patron Saint of Gibraltar and as such, protector of the whole of Europe.

In thanksgiving for the reconquest of Spain by Christian forces in 1492, the Catholics of Gibraltar converted a mosque into the Shrine of Nuestra Señora de Europa. Beneath a lighthouse tower, Our Lady presided over the Straits, its mariners and the continent of Europe for over two centuries. But in 1704, the British captured Gibraltar and pillaged the Shrine. They mutilated the wooden statue of the Virgin and Child and threw it over the cliff. A fisherman found the floating pieces and took them to Father Juan Romero de Figueroa at the Church on Main Street (now the Catholic Cathedral of St Mary the Crowned), who carried them to Spain for safekeeping, while the Church of Our Lady of Europe served as a British guardroom.

There across the bay in Algeciras, the Capillita de Europa housing the repaired Statue became a focus of devotion. A replica was placed in Gibraltar’s Cathedral.

In 1864, the Bishop attended the First Vatican Council, where he interested Blessed Pope Pius IX in building a new Shrine to Our Lady of Europe. Two years later,, the new Church was completed. The Vicar Apostolic John Baptist Scandella arranged for the original Statue to be returned to Gibraltar from Algeciras, where a replica replaced it.

This is the replica Statue

But military occupation during two World Wars left the Shrine in such disrepair, that in 1960 it was torn down for construction of the Old People’s Home. In 1961, the Government of Gibraltar returned the original Chapel, the former mosque, to the Catholic Church. In 1962, it was renovated and reopened as the Shrine of Our Lady of Europe, where the Statue was reinstalled on 17 October 1961. In 1979 Pope John Paul II proclaimed the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, Principal Patroness of the Diocese of Gibraltar under this title.

The feast of Our Lady of Europe was celebrated on 30 May until 1980, when the Vatican authorised its transfer to 5 May, then celebrated as Europe Day in honour of the Council of Europe’s founding on 5 May 1949.

Plague on the Shrine of Our Lady of Europe

Conversion of Saint Augustine of Hippo (354-430)


St Pope Pius V OP (1504-1573) (optional memorial) changed in 1969 this feast which had been celebrated on this day of his birth into Heaven since 1713.
Bishop of Rome, Ruler of the Papal States, Pope of the Council of Trent, the Counter-Reformation, the Battle of Lepanto, the Holy Rosary and the Pope who declared St Thomas Aquinas as a Doctor of the Church
(Optional Memorial)
The Roman Martyrology states of St Pius V today: “At Rome, Pope St Pius V, of the Order of Preachers, who laboured zealously and successfully for the re-establishment of Ecclesiastical discipline, the extirpation of heresies, the destruction of the enemies of the Christian name and, governed the Catholic Church by holy laws and the example of a saintly lfe.”
His Life:
Lepanto by G K Chesterton:

St Angelus of Jerusalem O.Carm (1185-1220) Priest, Martyr, Hermit, Mystic, Reformer, Thaumaturge, Missionary, convert from Judaism and a professed Priest of the Order of the Brothers of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel – The 800th Anniversary of his death – 5 MAY 2020..
His Life and Death:

St Avertinus of Tours
Bl Benvenuto Mareni
St Britto of Trier

Blessed Caterina Cittadini (1801-1857) Italian Sister from Bergamo who established the Ursuline Sisters of Saint Jerome Emiliani.

St Crescentiana
St Echa of Crayke
St Eulogius of Edessa
St Euthymius of Alexandria
St Geruntius of Milan
St Godehard of Hildesheim
Bl Grzegorz Boleslaw Frackowiak
St Hilary of Arles
St Hydroc
St Irenaeus of Thessalonica
St Irenes of Thessalonica
Bl John Haile
St Jovinian of Auxerre
St Jutta Kulmsee
St Leo of Africo
St Maurontius of Douai
St Maximus of Jerusalem
St Nectarius of Vienne
St Nicetas of Vienne

St Nunzio/Nuntius Sulprizio (1917-1836) Aged 19
St Nunzio’s very short life:

St Peregrinus of Thessalonica
St Sacerdos of Limoges
St Sacerdos of Saguntum
St Silvanus of Rome
St Theodore of Bologna
St Waldrada of Metz


Thought for the Day – 4 May – Mary, the Mother of God

Thought for the Day – 4 May – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Mary, the Mother of God

“St Matthew (Cf Mt 12:46-50) and St Mark (Cf Mk 3:31-35), relate how Jesus was preaching one day in Galilee, surrounded by His Apostles and by a large crowd, when a man approached and said: “Behold, thy mother and thy brethren are standing outside, seeking thee.”
“Who is my mother,” He answered, “and who are my brethren?”
Then He extended His hand towards His disciples and said: “Behold, my mother and my brethren! For whoever does the will of my Father in Heaven, he is my brother and sister and mother.”

These words were directed at us, not at Our Lady.
Not only was she the Immaculate Mother of Jesus Christ but, she performed lovingly, on all occasions, the Will of the heavenly Father.
She did His Will, in poverty and obedience, in exile and on Mount Calvary.
Therefore, she was God’s Mother in the spiritual, as well as, in the physical sense of the word, insofar, as she was constantly united to Him by a bond of love and of conformity with His desires.

Christ’s words indicate, that Mary’s perfect and continuous acceptance of God’s Will, was even more pleasing to God, than the dignity of the divine Motherhood.

We cannot equal her in dignity but, we can imitate her in this other respect.
Jesus will look on us as His brothers and as worthy sons of Mary, if we carry out His Will in all things.
It is not always easy to do this.
It is not easy, when we are strongly tempted to commit sins of pride, anger or impurity.
It is not easy, when we are overcome by sorrow or by sickness, when we are let down or misunderstod by others, when we are in want and, when we feel that we are collapsing beneath the weght of our cross.
At times like these, we should pray for Mary’s spirit of complete acceptance of the Will of God.

Most Holy Mary, not only were you raised to the dignity of Mother of God but, you carried out His holy Will, heroically on all occasions.
Obtain for me, from your divine Son, Jesus, the grace to co-operate always and at all costs, with His designs for me, both in life and in death, amen.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci



Quote/s of the Day – 4 May – “Lord, help me to live this day … ”

Quote/s of the Day – 4 May – “Mary’s Month” Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: Acts 14:19-28, Psalm 145:10-13, 21, John 14:27-31

“Let not your hearts be troubled,
neither let them be afraid.”

John 14:27

“Can any of you by worrying
add a moment to your life-span?”

Luke 12:25

“Lord, help me to live this day,
quietly, easily.
To lean upon Thy great strength,
trustfully, restfully.
To wait for the unfolding of Thy will,
patiently, serenely.
To meet others,
peacefully, joyously.
To face tomorrow,
confidently, courageously.”

St Frances of Assisi (c 1181-1226)

“Remember that you have only one soul;
that you have only one death to die;
that you have only one life. . . .
If you do this,
there will be many things
about which you care nothing.”

“Let nothing perturb you,
nothing frighten you.
All things pass.
God does not change.
Patience achieves everything.”

St Teresa of Jesus of Avila (1515-1582)
Doctor of Prayer

“Let us think only
of spending the present
day well.
Then, when tomorrow
shall have come,
it will be called
and then, we will think
about it.”

St Francis de Sales (1567-1622) Doctor of the Church

“Prayer is our strength,
our sword,
our consolation
and the key to paradise.”

St Joseph Freinademetz (1852-1908)

“Pray, hope and don’t worry.”

St Pius of Pietrelcina/Padre Pio (1887-1968)


One Minute Reflection – 4 May – “My peace I give to you” –

One Minute Reflection – 4 May – “Mary’s Month” Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: Acts 14:19-28, Psalm 145:10-13, 21, John 14:27-31

“My peace I give to you – John 14:27

REFLECTION‘He breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the holy Spirit” Lord Jesus Christ, once again grant that of us, too, there may be but “one heart and mind” (Acts 4:32) for then there will be “a great calm” (Mk 4:39).
My dear listeners, I exhort you to good will and kindness to one another and peace with all. For were we to have charity among ourselves, we would have both peace and the Holy Spirit. Let us undertake to become devout and pray to God… since the apostles persevered in prayer… If we set ourselves to fervent prayer then the Holy Spirit will enter us and say: “Peace be with you! It is ,; be not afraid” (cf. Mk 6:50)…
And what ought we to ask God for, my brethren? For all that is for His honour and the salvation of your souls and, in a word, for the help of the Holy Spirit – “Send forth your Spirit and they will be created” (Ps 104[103]:30) – peace and tranquillity…” – St Francis de Sales (1567-1622) Bishop of Geneva and Doctor of Charity of the Church – First Sermon for Pentecost

PRAYER – Loving Father, grant us the grace to strive after perfect love. Help us to bring forth frequents acts of love so that we may grow in this greatest of virtues and thus find perfect peace. In the great love of Your divine Son, who gave Himself for us, He filled us with peace and hope. May these gifts grow always in our hearts. We ask for the intercession of Mary, the Blessed Virgin, His Mother. Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, Hail MARY!, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARY'S MONTH, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning Offering – 4 May – Hail, O Mother! By St John Chrysostom

Our Morning Offering – 4 May – “Mary’s Month” – Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Easter

Hail, O Mother!
By St John Chrysostom (347-407)
Father and Doctor of the Church

Hail, O Mother!
Virgin, heaven, throne, glory of our Church,
it’s foundation and ornament.
Earnestly pray for us to Jesus,
your Son and Our Lord,
that through your intercession,
we may have mercy on the day of judgement.
Pray that we may receive, all those good things
which are reserved for those who love God.
Through the grace and favour of Our Lord, Jesus Christ,
to Whom, with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
be power, honour and glory,
now and forever.


Saint of the Day – 4 May – Blessed Ladislas of Gielniów OFM Cap (c 1440-1505)

Saint of the Day – 4 May – Blessed Ladislas of Gielniów OFM Cap (c 1440-1505) “The Apostle of Lithuania,” Priest of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin, zealous and tireless Evangeliser, renowned Preacher, Poet and Hymnist, disciple of St Bernardine of Siena and his charism of the Most Holy Name of Jesus and a devotee of the Passio of Christ. Ladislas served his Order in various capacities which included both a Doorkeeper and as its Provincial. He travelled across Poland to evangelise and was a noted preacher. Born in c 1440 in Gniezno, Poland and died on 4 May 1505 of natural causes. Patronages – Lithuania (chosen in August 1753), Poland (chosen in August 1753)m Galicia (eastern Europe), Warsaw, Poland (chosen in August 1753). He is also known as – “The Apostle of Lithuania,” Lithuanian Apostle,” Wladyslaw of Gielniów.

The Roman Martyrology states of him: “In Warsaw in Poland, Blessed Ladislaus of Gielniów, Priest of the Order of Minors, who preached the Passion of the Lord with extraordinary zeal and celebrated it with pious hymns.”

He worked to build up the fledgling Order in Poland and Lithuania, often in the face of resistance from the larger and more established Conventual Franciscans, with their considerably more relaxed way of religious life. The Observants’ very rigorous asceticism and strict interpretation of Franciscan poverty, constantly threatened to open old wounds among the followers of St. Francis and public controversies, between the two groups, often broke out in the fifteenth century.

Blessed Ladislas was born in the Polish City of Gielniow. He attended the University of Warsaw and then entered the City Convent of the Franciscan Friars Minor reformed by St John of Capestrano.

Within a few years ,he was elected Provincial Superior of the Order, a position he held for a long time, promoting the revision of the constitutions, which were then approved by the General Chapter of the Order, which was held in Urbino in 1498.

He carefully selected the most suitable Friars to send to Lithuania for the evangelisation of that Country. However, he reminded them of the greater importance to be attributed to personal holiness, which must always be placed before the proclamation of the Gospel to others. This initiative succeeded in reconciling several schismatics with the Church and also obtained the conversion of numerous pagans,

Ladislas was an ardent and eloquent preacher, He was much sought after and appreciated by the people. His homilies, as the Martyrologium Romanum also recalls, used to emphasise, in a particular way, the salvific value intrinsic to the Passion of Christ. Below is one of his devotional Hymns on the Passion:

Jesus, Judas sold away, for just wretched money
God the Father gave His Son, for our souls’ salvation
Jesus at the paschal feast, gave out His own body,
soothed His sad Apostles’ grief, with His very life blood.

To the garden Jesus went, with His friends, His loved ones
Thrice His Father he implored, on behalf of sinners
Bloody sweat out from Him poured, in His heavy struggle
O my soul, so very loved, look on Him, who loves you so.

He was the author of various hymns on this theme, intended for singing in Vespers. It was precisely religious song and poetry, in fact, that would become Ladislas’s most lasting legacy to Polish religious culture. He is the first major Polish Poet known by name, to write sometimes in the vernacular, rather than exclusively in the learned language of Latin.

His songs and verse represent well, his own piety, as well as those of his Order. Frequently, they illustrate the popular orientation of both. For instance, the simple poverty of Christ and Mary ,is sometimes stressed, in a gentle and colourful way, which, nonetheless, puts across the Gospel story’s emotional weight. Consider these verses from his vernacular song on the Nativity:

A town not large called Bethlehem
Around that time had many guests,
There Joseph with his new-found bride
Arrived, his Mary great with child.

Because these two possessed no wealth
No welcome could they find in town,
So to a stable off they went,
And there they dwelt in poverty

The purest Virgin Mary thus
To Jesus Christ the Lord gave birth.
At midnight, God Himself was born,
And all the universe rejoiced.

And when the Babe began to cry,
Upon bare earth itself He lay
Before Him there, His Mother knelt
And so to her small Child gave praise.

‘Wa, wa, wa, wa,’ the baby cried,
Lamenting all our human sins,
His mom then took Him up from earth,
And wrapped Him up in swaddling bands.

Because the stable was too tight,
A manger into crib she made.
No nursemaid there was found with her,
To come to that poor Mother’s aid.

Some, lying, have been known to claim
(And thus that Mother they insult!)
That serving maids abounded there
And gave that Mother lots of help.

When in 1498 Poland found itself having to face an invasion by the Tartars and Turks, an army of 70,000 men in all, Ladislas led a prayer crusade to invoke divine intervention. Tradition attributes the consequent extraordinary floods of the Dnepr and Prut rivers to this, which blocked the foreign invaders. This particular intercession, increased his reputation as a great man of prayer.

He strongly upheld the Bernadine mission of preaching to the laity and poor in accessible, moving and often colourful and even entertaining sermons, although always with forceful appeal to keep and live the Christian faith in all its rigour.

It is also reported that, during the last Good Friday of his life, while he was meditating, he levitated into the air, assuming the position of Christ on the Cross. When he returned to the ground, he collapsed and was confined to his bed. He remained bed-ridden until his death on 4 May 1505 a few weeks later.

Ladislas was Beatified in 1586 by Pope Sixtus V and on 11 February 1750, Pope Benedict XIV his cult received official confirmation.

His relics are interred in the Chapel of Blesed Ladislas in Warsaw, see below.

Posted in FRANCISCAN OFM, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MARIAN TITLES, SAINT of the DAY

Notre-Dame de Gray, Gray, Haute-Saône, Franche-Comté, France (1400s) and Memorials of the Saints – 4 May

Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Easter +2021

Notre-Dame de Gray, Gray, Haute-Saône, Franche-Comté, France / Our Lady of Gray (1400s) – 4 May

By the 1200s, a cruciform oak tree had become a place of devotion in the Flemish Town of Scherpenheuvel.(Montaigu in French) In the early 1400s, the Shrine became famous after a Statue of the Virgin placed on the tree, fell down and could not be moved from the spot.

The copy of the orginal Statue, made in 1613

But Protestants destroyed the Sanctuary in 1568 and in 1604 the tree was cut down. In 1613, a poor widow, Jeanne Bonnet, made a pilgrimage to Montaigu at the age of 70. She brought a piece of the sacred oak home to Salins-les-Bains in eastern France, where sculptor Jean Brange, carved a Statue of the Virgin from it, copying the Belgian original from the description.

From 1616 until the French Revolution, this Statue presided over a long series of miracles at the Capuchin Monastery in the Town of Gray, 37 miles away. When the revolutionaries expelled the Monks and pillaged the Monastery, a family hid the holy image until it could be safely installed in the Basilica at Gray.

In thanksgiving for the end of the 1849 cholera epidemic, Cardinal Mathieu, Archbishop of Besançon, gave the Shrine a silver Statue covered in gold and jewels, which he dedicated on 4 May 1851, at a ceremony attended by 92 Priests, throngs of the faithful, artillery salvos and the ringing of all the bells in Town. Afterwards, the Parish celebrated the feast of Our Lady of Gray with a procession every 4 May.

The new Statue dating from 1849

St Albian of Albée
Bl Angela Bartolomea dei Ranzi
Bl Angela Isabella dei Ranzi
St Antonia of Constantinople
St Antonina of Nicaea
St Antonia of Nicomedia
St Antonius of Rocher
St Arbeo of Freising
St Augustine Webster
St Cunegund of Regensburg
St Curcodomus of Auxerre
St Cyriacus of Ancona
St Enéour
St Ethelred of Bardney
St Florian of Lorch
Bl Hilsindis

Blessed Jean-Martin Moyë (1730-1793) Priest, Missionary, Founder

St Jose Maria Rubio y Peralta SJ (1864-1929) “the Apostle of Madrid” and “Father of the Poor,” Confessor
His Life:

St Judas Cyriacus
Blessed Ladislas of Gielniów OFM Cap (c 1440-1505) Priest
St Luca da Toro
Bl Margareta Kratz
Bl Michal Giedroyc
St Nepotian of Altino
Bl Paolino Bigazzini
St Paulinus of Cologne
St Paulinus of Senigallia
St Pelagia of Tarsus
St Porphyrius of Camerino Rino
St Richard Reynolds
St Robert Lawrence
St Silvanus of Gaza

Blessed Tommaso da Olera OFM Cap (1563-1631) Lay Brother of the the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin, Spiritual Advisor, Confessor, Apostle of Charity, Writer, Mystic, Penitent and Ascetic.
His Life:

Carthusian Martyrs: A group of Carthusian monks who were hanged, drawn and quartered between 19 June 1535 and 20 September 1537 for refusing to acknowledge the English royalty as head of the Church:
• Blessed Humphrey Middlemore
• Blessed James Walworth
• Blessed John Davy
• Blessed John Rochester
• Blessed Richard Bere
• Blessed Robert Salt
• Blessed Sebastian Newdigate
• Blessed Thomas Green
• Blessed Thomas Johnson
• Blessed Thomas Redyng
• Blessed Thomas Scryven
• Blessed Walter Pierson
• Blessed William Exmew
• Blessed William Greenwood
• Blessed William Horne
• Saint Augustine Webster
• Saint John Houghton
• Saint Robert Lawrence

Martyrs of Cirta: Also known as
• Martyrs of Cirtha
• Martyrs of Tzirta
A group of clergy and laity martyred together in Cirta, Numidia (in modern Tunisia) in the persecutions of Valerian. They were – Agapius, Antonia, Emilian, Secundinus and Tertula, along with a woman and her twin children whose names have not come down to us.

Martyrs of England: 85 English, Scottish and Welsh Catholics who were martyred during the persecutions by Protestants in the 16th and 17th centuries. They are commemorated together on 22 November.
• Blessed Alexander Blake • Blessed Alexander Crow • Blessed Antony Page • Blessed Arthur Bell • Blessed Charles Meehan • Blessed Christopher Robinson • Blessed Christopher Wharton • Blessed Edmund Duke • Blessed Edmund Sykes • Blessed Edward Bamber • Blessed Edward Burden • Blessed Edward Osbaldeston • Blessed Edward Thwing • Blessed Francis Ingleby • Blessed George Beesley • Blessed George Douglas • Blessed George Errington • Blessed George Haydock • Blessed George Nichols • Blessed Henry Heath • Blessed Henry Webley • Blessed Hugh Taylor • Blessed Humphrey Pritchard • Blessed John Adams • Blessed John Bretton • Blessed John Fingley • Blessed John Hambley • Blessed John Hogg • Blessed John Lowe • Blessed John Norton • Blessed John Sandys • Blessed John Sugar • Blessed John Talbot • Blessed John Thules • Blessed John Woodcock • Blessed Joseph Lambton • Blessed Marmaduke Bowes • Blessed Matthew Flathers • Blessed Montfort Scott • Blessed Nicholas Garlick • Blessed Nicholas Horner • Blessed Nicholas Postgate • Blessed Nicholas Woodfen • Blessed Peter Snow • Blessed Ralph Grimston • Blessed Richard Flower • Blessed Richard Hill • Blessed Richard Holiday • Blessed Richard Sergeant • Blessed Richard Simpson • Blessed Richard Yaxley • Blessed Robert Bickerdike • Blessed Robert Dibdale • Blessed Robert Drury • Blessed Robert Grissold • Blessed Robert Hardesty • Blessed Robert Ludlam • Blessed Robert Middleton • Blessed Robert Nutter • Blessed Robert Sutton • Blessed Robert Sutton • Blessed Robert Thorpe • Blessed Roger Cadwallador • Blessed Roger Filcock • Blessed Roger Wrenno • Blessed Stephen Rowsham • Blessed Thomas Atkinson • Blessed Thomas Belson • Blessed Thomas Bullaker • Blessed Thomas Hunt • Blessed Thomas Palaser • Blessed Thomas Pilcher • Blessed Thomas Pormort • Blessed Thomas Sprott • Blessed Thomas Watkinson • Blessed Thomas Whitaker • Blessed Thurstan Hunt • Blessed William Carter • Blessed William Davies • Blessed William Gibson • Blessed William Knight • Blessed William Lampley • Blessed William Pike • Blessed William Southerne • Blessed William Spenser • Blessed William Thomson •
They were Beatified on 22 November 1987 by Pope John Paul II.

Martyrs of Novellara: A bishop and several his flock who were martyred together in the persecutions of Diocletian and whose relics were kept and enshrined together. We know nothing else about them but the names – Apollo, Bono, Cassiano, Castoro, Damiano, Dionisio, Leonida, Lucilla, Poliano, Tecla, Teodora and Vespasiano. They were Martyred on 26 March 303. Their relics were enshrined in the parish of Saint Stephen in Novellara, Italy in 1603.


Thought for the Day – 3 May – The Imitation of Mary

Thought for the Day – 3 May – “Mary’s Month – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Imitation of Mary

“At first sight, it seems a very difficult matter, to imitate Mary.
More than any other creature, she reached the highest peak of perfection.
But, if we examine the nature of her outstanding sanctity, it will seem easier to imitate her.

According to the masters of spiritual life, there are three kinds of holiness.
First, there is extraordinary sanctity, which abounds in miracles and ecstasies. such as that of St Francis, St Aloysius Gonzaga, St Mary Magdalen dei Pazzi, St Catherine of Siena and many others.
Secondly, there is ordinary holiness, where perfection is achieved without being manifested in miracles or in ecstasies.
Thirdly, there is hidden sanctity, a relationship entirely between the soul and God, which consists in the faithful and loving fulfilment of Hs holy Will.
It is unnoticed by men but one day, it will shine forth in the sight of God and the human race.

The holiness of Mary, falls into the latter two categories, for hers was a hidden sanctity, to outward appearances, quite ordinary.
We read nothing of her having been in ecstasy or having performed miracles.
We do read, however, that she did God’s Will on all occasions; that she lived an obscure life of humility and love; that she followed Jesus, as far as Calvary, along the sorrowful road of the Cross; that she loved Him above everything else and, that she lived for Him alone.

It is not too difficult to imitate Mary.
With her protection and with the grace of God, it can become almost easy.
All we need, is a firm resolution to accomplish the Will of God in all things, a great love for Jesus, which will make Him the object of all our actions and, a spirit of prayer, which will keep us close to God, in every kind of circumstance.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci



Quote/s of the Day – 3 May – “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.” – John 14:9

Quote/s of the Day – 3 May – “Mary’s Month” – Monday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: First: First Corinthians 15: 1-8; Psalm: Psalms 19: 2-3, 4-5; Gospel: John 14: 6-14 and the Feast of Sts Philip and James Apostles and Martyrs

“Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.”

John 14:9

“I am in my Father a
nd you in me
and I in you.”

John 14:20

“It is no advantage
to be near the light,
if the eyes are closed.”

“Faith is to believe
what you do not see.
The reward of this faith,
is to see what you believe.”

St Augustine (354-430)
Father and Doctor of Grace

Posted in CHRIST the WORD, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The HOLY TRINITY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 3 May – ‘Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. ‘ – John 14:9

One Minute Reflection – 3 May – “Mary’s Month” – Monday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: First: First Corinthians 15: 1-8; Psalm: Psalms 19: 2-3, 4-5; Gospel: John 14: 6-14 and the Feast of Sts Philip and James Apostles and Martyrs

“Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? …” -John 14:9

REFLECTION – “In the Church, I know of only one image, that is, the image of the unseen God. God has said about this image, “Let us make man [humankind] in our image.” Of this image it is written that Christ is the “effulgence of the glory and impress of His hypostasis.” In that image, I perceive the Father, as the Lord Jesus Himself has said, “The one who has seen me has seen the Father.” For this image is not separated from the Father, which indeed, has taught me the unity of the Trinity, saying, “I and the Father are one” and again, “All things whatever the Father has are mine.” [In this image, also perceive] the Holy Spirit, seeing that the Spirit is Christ’s and has received of Christ, as it is written, “He shall receive of mine and shall announce it to you.” – St Ambrose (340-397) Bishop of Milan, Father and one of the original four Doctors of the Latin Church( – Sermon Against Auxentius, 32)

PRAYER – Lord God, each year You grant us the blessing of celebrating with joy, the feast day of Your Apostles and Martyrs Saints Philip and James. Make us partners with them by their prayers, in the Passion and Resurrection of Your only-begotten Son, so that we may come, with them, to the eternal vision of Your glory. We make our prayer through Jesus Christ, our Lord in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God now and forever, amen.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARY'S MONTH, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning Offering – 3 May – Mary, Mother of Grace

Our Morning Offering – 3 May – “Mary’s Month” – Monday of the Fifth Week of Easter

Mary, Mother of Grace
St Athanasius (297-373)
Father & Doctor

(whose Feast we celebrated yesterday, 2 May)

It becomes you to be mindful of us,
as you stand near Him who granted you all graces,
for you are the Mother of God and our Queen.
Help us for the sake of the King,
the Lord God and Master, Who was born of you.
For this reason,
you are called full of grace.
Remember us, most holy Virgin,
and bestow on us gifts
from the riches of your graces,
Virgin full of graces.

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 3 May – Saint Ansfrid of Utrecht (c 940-1010)

Saint of the Day – 3 May – Saint Ansfrid of Utrecht (c 940-1010) Bishop, Count of Huy and the sword-bearer and Knight for Otto I, Holy Roman Emperor. He became Bishop of Utrecht in 995. He appears to have been the son or grandson of Lambert, a nobleman of the Maasgau, the area where he later founded the Abbeys of Thorn and Heiligenberg and to have been related to various important contemporaries including the royal family. Born in c 940 in the Brabant region of the Netherlands and died on 3 May 1010 in Amersfoort, Netherlands of natural causes. Patronage – Amersfoort. He is also known as Ansfridus, Ansfried, Ansfrido.

The young Knight St Ansfrid in the Abbey Church of Heiligenberg

The principal source of information regarding Ansfrid is the De diversitatem temporum by the Benedictine Albert of Metz, written around 1022.

Ansfrid had the same name as a paternal uncle, Ansfrid the elder, a Count who held 15 counties. The young Ansfrid studied secular and clerical subjects under another paternal uncle, Robert, Archbishop of Trier, before attending the Cathedral school at Cologne.

In 961, Otto I took Ansfrid into his personal service and made him his swordbearer. When Otto was in Rome the following year to be crowned Holy Roman Emperor, he directed Ansfrid to keep close at hand ,with the sword as a precaution against any unforeseen eventualities.

Because of his Christian commitment, he was highly respected and an important Knight of the Emperor’s circle, holding rich possessions along the Meuse, in Brabant and Gelderland. Possibly all or some of his counties were inherited from his paternal uncle of the same name. As Count, he had considerable success in suppressing piracy and armed robbery. In 985, Otto III granted Ansfrid the right to mint coins at Medemblik, on the north-south shipping route through the Vlie, as well as, the income from tolls and tax collecting.

He was married to Heresuint or Hilsondis. They had one child, Benedicta. He founded a Romanesque Abbey Church on his wife’s estate at Thorn under the patronage of St Michael. The Abbey itself had a double cloister that housed both man and women religious. Ansfrid planned it as a place of retirement for himself and his family after he left public service. His wife was to be the first Abbess but she died on her way there and Benedicta, their daughter, took her place.

sT Ansfrid and Hilsondis. Stained glass windows in the Abbey of Thorn

After his wife’s death, Ansfrid desired to retire and become a Monk. However, in 995, Emperor Otto III and Bishop Notker of Liège persuaded the reluctant Ansfrid to assume the then vacant Aee of Utrecht. Ansfrid objected that as he had borne weapons as a Knight, he was unworthy of the office but the Emperor prevailed. The elderly Count laid down his sword on the Altar of St Mary in Aachen and was Ordained Priest and Consecratedas the eighteenth Bishop of Utrecht, in the same ceremony. Bishop Ansfrid never took a commission in the royal army, in contrast to Notger and the Bishop of Cologne.

In 1006 Bishop Ansfrid founded the Abbey of Heiligenberg, also under the patronage of St Michael. Toward the end of his life he became increasingly weakened through fasting and retired there as a Monk, caring for the sick, although almost blind himself.

Upon his death, during the funeral, the faithful of Heiligenberg took possession of his body, while the people of Utrecht were extinguishing a not coincidental fire. The Abbess of Thorn mediated and Ansfrid was buried in the Cathedral of Saint Martin in Utrecht.

St Ansfrid, fine bronze of the fountain “Li bassinia” in Huy

The Feast of the Finding of the Holy Cross, Feast St James and St Philip, Apostles of Christ, Virgen de la Carrasca, Bordón, Teruel, Aragón, Spain (1212) and Memorials of the Saints – 3 May


St James the Lesser Apostle (Feast)
St Philip the Apostle (Feast)
Sts James and Philip:

Virgen de la Carrasca, Bordón, Teruel, Aragón, Spain (1212) 3 May:

Commemorated on First Monday of May

In 1212, a herder found an image of the Virgin in a holm oak (carrasca) in the rocky countryside of Aragón in Spaon. There are several stories about what happened then, all of them ending with a Shrine in Bordón. Templars carried the Statue to Castellote, 12 miles north but the next day the image was back in the oak, the Virgin made those carrying her to Castellote keep turning toward Bordón and springs arose at each turn.

Original Statue

In the place where it was found, a hermitage was built to house it, which would later be replaced by the building that today is the Parish Church of Bordón, built in 1306 by the Templar Order (The Order was dissolved by Pope Clement V in 1312 ).

Although its exterior hardly stands out, its interior is magical and fascinating, a place full of mystery. In one of the Chapels inside, the Templar novices who previously made a pilgrimage on foot from Castellote, capital of the Templar Commandery, performed initiation rites to become Knights of the Order.

In the 18th century, the interior of the Church was covered with marvellous frescoes, which have been recently restored. Unfortunately, the venerated carving of the Black Virgin of the Carrasca was lost during the Civil War, along with another very famous Romanesque carving with a reputation for miraculously calming storms, the Virgin of the Spider, only a series of photographs being preserved, which allowed the making a replica.

Replica Statue

On the first Monday in May, the faithful from the three towns to the south—Tronchón, Olocau del Rey and Mirambel—conduct a processional pilgrimage to the Virgin de la Carrasca. They have done this “from time immemorial,” according to a document of 1390 in the Parish archives of Tronchón.

St Adalsindis of Bèze
Bl Adam of Cantalupo in Sabina
St Ahmed the Calligrapher
St Aldwine of Peartney
St Pope Alexander I
St Alexander of Constantinople
Bl Alexander of Foigny
St Alexander of Rome
Bl Alexander Vincioli
St Ansfrid of Utrecht (c 940-1010) Bishop
St Antonina of Constantinople
St Diodorus the Deacon

Blessed Edoardo Giuseppe Rosaz TOSF (1877-1903) Bishop of Susa from 1877 until his death, Founder of Franciscan Mission Sisters of Susa, Third Order Franciscan.
His Life:

St Ethelwin of Lindsey
St Eventius of Rome
St Fumac
St Gabriel Gowdel
St Juvenal of Narni
Bl Maria Leonia Paradis
St Maura of Antinoe
St Peter of Argos
St Philip of Zell
Bl Ramon Oromí Sullà
St Rhodopianus the Deacon
St Scannal of Cell-Coleraine
Bl Sostenaeus

St Stanislas Kazimierczyk CRL (1433–1489)
His Life:

St Theodolus of Rome
St Timothy of Antinoe
Bl Uguccio
Bl Zechariah