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Thought for the Day – 22 September – Following Jesus, the Divine Model

Thought for the Day – 22 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Following Jesus, the Divine Model

“Jesus is the Divine Model, Whom we ought to follow and imitate.
In Him, the virtues possess both the infinite splendour of the Divinity and the gentle appeal of glorified Humanity.
Jesus does not dazzle us with His brightness but kindly invites us to love and follow Him.
“Learn from me” He says, “for I am meek and humble of heart and you will find rest for your souls” (Mt 11:29).

After He has indicated humility, meekness and interior peace, as the foundations of the spiritual life, He invites us to take up the yoke of His law and assures us, that we shall find it light (Mt 11).

If we follow Jesus, even though we are bowed with Him, beneath the weight of the Cross, we shall experience, even in this life, a reflection of the peace and joy which will be our reward in Heaven.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/01/24/thought-for-the-day-24-january-following-jesus/
PART TWO HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/07/11/thought-for-the-day-11-july-following-jesus/

Posted in "Follow Me", ARMOUR of CHRIST, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GOOD WORKS, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on THE WORLD, QUOTES on WATCHING, The LAST THINGS, The SECOND COMING, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 25 August – ‘ … Let us be watchful to observe and to do the Lord’s precepts.’

One Minute Reflection – 25 August – St Louis IX (1214-1270) Confessor, King of France – Wisdom 10:10-14, Luke 19:12-26

I say to you that to everyone who has, shall be given but from him, who does not have, even that which he has, shall be taken away.” – Luke 19;26

REFLECTION – “The Lord was looking to our days when He said, “When the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on earth?” (Lk 18:8) We see that what He foretold has come to pass. There is no faith in the fear of God, in the law of righteousness, in love, in good works …. That which our conscience would fear if it believed, it does not fear because it does not believe at all. If it believed, it would also take heed and if it took heed, it would be saved.

Therefore, beloved brothers, let us arouse ourselves as much as we can and break the slumber of our listlessness. Let us be watchful to observe and to do the Lord’s precepts. Let us be like He Himself, has bidden us to be, saying, “Gird your loins and light your lamps and be like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding, ready to open immediately, when He comes and knocks. Blessed are those servants, whom the Master finds vigilant on His arrival“.

We ought to be dressed for work, lest, when the day of setting forth comes, it should find us burdened and entangled. Let our light shine, in good works and glow, in such a way, as to lead us from the night of this world, to the daylight of eternal brightness. Let us always wait with solicitude and caution for the sudden coming of the Lord, so that when he knocks, our faith may be on the watch and receive from the Lord, the reward of our vigilance. If these commands be observed, if these warnings and precepts be kept, we will not be overtaken in slumber, by the deceit of the devil. But we shall reign with Christ in His Kingdom, as servants on the watch.” – St Cyprian (c 200-258) Bishop of Carthage and Martyr, Father of the Church (Treatise on the unity of the Church, 26-27).

PRAYER – O God, Who transported Thy blessed Confessor Louis from an earthly throne to the glory of the heavenly Kingdom, by his merits and intercession we beseech Thee, to make us of the company of the King of kings, Jesus Christ Thy Son. Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on THE WORLD, QUOTES on WEALTH/RICHES, SAINT of the DAY, The HEART, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 23 August – ‘ … O man, send your treasure on, send it ahead into Heaven …’

One Minute Reflection – 23 August – St Philip Benizi OSM (1233-1285) Confessor – 1 Corinthians. 4:9-14, Luke 12:32-34

“For where your treasure is,
there also will your heart be.
” – Luke 12:34

REFLECTION – “All this is what that treasure brings about. Either through almsgiving, it raises the heart of a man into Heaven, or through greed it buries it in the earth. That is why He said, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
O man, send your treasure on, send it ahead into Heaven, or else your God-given soul will be buried in the earth! Gold comes from the depth of the earth — the soul, from the highest Heaven. Clearly it is better ,to carry the gold to where the soul resides, than to bury the soul, in the mine of the gold. That is why God orders those who will serve in His Army here below, to fight as men stripped of concern for riches and unencumbered by anything. To these He has granted the privilege of reigning in Heaven.” – St Peter Chrysologus (c 400-450) Bishop of Ravenna, “Doctor of Homilies” Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon 22)

PRAYER – O God, Who through St. Philip, Thy Confessor, gave us an outstanding example of humility, grant that Thy household may follow his example by scorning worldly prosperity and, ever seek the things of Heaven 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).

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on WISDOM, The HEART, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 17 August – ‘But, it depends on us, if He does not always enter or always remain.’ – St Ambrose

One Minute Reflection – 17 August – St Hyacinth OP (1185-1257) ) Confessor – Sirach 31:8-11, Luke 12:35-40

Let your loins be girt about and your lamps burning and you yourselves ,like men waiting for their master’s return from the wedding; so that when he comes and knocks, they may straightaway open to him. Blessed are those servants whom the master, on his return, shall find watching.” – Luke 12:35-37

REFLECTION – “God, the Word, stirs up the lazy and arouses the sleeper. For indeed, someone who comes knocking at the door is always wanting to come in. But, it depends on us, if He does not always enter or always remain. May your door be open to Him Who comes; open your soul, enlarge your spiritual capacities, that you may discover the riches of simplicity, the treasures of peace and sweetness of grace. Expand your heart, run to meet the Sun of that Eternal Light that “enlightens everyone” (Jn 1,9). It is certain, that this true Light shines for all but, if anyone shuts their windows, then they themselves shut themselves off from this Eternal Light.

So even Christ remains outside, if you shut the door of your soul. It is true that He could enter but He does not want to use force, He does not put those who refuse under pressure. Descended from the Virgin, born from her womb, He shines throughout the universe to give light to all. Those who long to receive the Light, that shines with an everlasting brightness, open up to Him. No night comes to intervene. Indeed, the sun we see each day gives way to night’s darkness but the Sun of justice (Mal 3,20) knows no setting, for Wisdom is not overcome by evil.” – St Ambrose (340-397) Bishop of Milan and Father and Doctor of the Church – (12th Sermon on Psalm 118).

PRAYER – O God, Who gladden us with the annual feast of blessed Hyacinth, Thy Confessor, mercifully grant that, while honouring the anniversary of his death, we may also imitate his deeds. 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).

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, MARIAN PRAYERS, Our MORNING Offering, PAPAL PRAYERS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning Offering – 16 August – Save Us, O Mary!

Our Morning Offering – 16 August – “The Month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary”

Save Us, O Mary!
By Venerable Pope Pius XII (1876-1958)
(Pontiff 1939-1958)

O Virgin, fair as the moon,
delight of the Angels and Saints in Heaven,
grant that we may become like you
and that our souls may receive a ray of your beauty,
which does not decline with the years
but shines forth into eternity.
O Mary, sun of Heaven,
restore life where there is death
and enlighten spirits, where there is darkness.
Turn your countenance to your children
and radiate on us your light and your fervour.
O Mary, powerful as an army,
grant victory to our ranks.
We are very weak
and our enemy rages with uttermost conceit.
But under your banner
we are confident of overcoming him. ….
Save us, O Mary,
fair as the moon,
bright as the sun,
awe-inspiring as an army set in battle array
and sustained not by hatred
but by the ardour of love.
Amen

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL

Thought for the Day – 21 July – Our Dominant Passion

Thought for the Day – 21 July – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Our Dominant Passion

“Holy and God-fearing people know their own particular weakness.
They accept it as a cross and will not rest until they have conquered it with God’s help,
The battle cannot be won in a day but, in most cases, takes a great many years.
Often the ultimate victory is not gained until the hour of death.

It has been said that self-love dies three days after ourselves!
We are enormously attached to our own ego and humility is a very difficult virtue to acquire.

Sometimes, we have struggled for years to gain it and quite suddenly, we meet with another disastrous fall.
It would be easy to be overcome by discouragement at this stage but, this should not be allowed to happen.
When we fall, we should say to God in our repentance: “It is good for me to be humbled.
To ourselves, we should say immediately: “Let us begin all over again.

St Francis de Sales was endowed by nature with a sharp and hasty temperament, against which he fought for many years with great determination and reliance on God’s help.
Finally, he conquered and came to regarded as an angel of peace.
Nevertheless, even in the late years of his life, he still experienced inward tendencies towards anger, so that his exterior gentleness, was really a supreme act of victory!

He as known as the “Gentle Christ of Geneva.””

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/07/20/thought-for-the-day-20-july-our-dominant-passion/

Posted in "Follow Me", ARMOUR of CHRIST, BAPTISM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, QUOTES on GREED, WEALTH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE WORLD, The HEART, The KINGDOM of GOD, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 21 July – ‘Where is the heart that loves …?’

Quote/s of the Day – 21 July – 1 Corinthians 7:25-3, 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
.”

Matthew 13:44

For where your treasure is,
there also will your heart be.

Luke 12:34

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

O man, send your treasure on,
send it ahead into Heaven,
or else your God-given soul
will be buried in the earth!
Gold comes from the depth of the earth —
the soul, from the highest Heaven.
Clearly it is better ,to carry the gold
to where the soul resides,
than to bury the soul,
in the mine of the gold.
That is why God orders those
who will serve in His Army here below,
to fight as men stripped of concern
for riches and unencumbered by anything.

St Peter Chrysologus (c 400-450)
“Doctor of Homilies”
Father and Doctor of the Church

Where is the heart that loves?
On the thing it loves.
Therefore, where our love is,
there our heart is held captive.
It cannot leave it;
it cannot be lifted higher,
it cannot go either to the right or the left;
see, it is fixed.
Where the miser’s treasure is,
there is his heart
and where our heart is,
there is our treasure.

St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)

Posted in "Follow Me", ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on MISSION, QUOTES on SACRED SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 14 July – ‘A good soldier of Christ Jesus’

One Minute Reflection – 14 July – “The Month of the Precious Blood” – The Memorial of St Bonaventure OFM (1221-1274) Seraphic Doctor of the Church – 2 Timothy 4:1-8, Matthew 5:13-19

You are the light of the world.” – Matthew 5:14

REFLECTION – “I shall always love and reverence the Apostles sent by Christ and their successors, in sowing the seed of the Gospel, those zealous and tireless co-operators in propagating the Word, who may justly say of themselves: Let a man so account of us as the ministers of Christ and the dispensers of the mysteries of God. For Christ, like a most watchful and most faithful householder, wished that the Gospel lamp should be lighted by such ministers and delegates, with fire sent down from Heaven and once lighted, should not be put under a measure but set upon a candlestick, so that it may spread its brightness far and wide and put to flight, all darkness and error, rife among both Jews and Gentiles.

Now it is not enough for the Gospel teacher to be a brilliant speaker in the eyes of the people; he must also be as a voice crying in the desert and endeavour, by his eloquence, to help many to lead good lives, lest, if he omit his duty of speaking, he be called the dumb dog that is not able to bark, spoken of by the prophet. Yes, he should also burn, in such a way, that, equipped with good works and love, he may adorn his evangelical office and follow the leadership of Paul. He indeed, was not satisfied with bidding the Bishop of the Ephesians: Thus command and teach: conduct thyself in work as a good soldier of Christ Jesus but he unflaggingly preached the Gospel to friend and foe alike and, said with a good conscience to the Bishops gathered at Ephesus: You know how I have kept back nothing that was for your good but have declared it to you and taught you in public and from house to house, urging Jews and Gentiles to turn to God in repentance and to believe in our Lord Jesus Christ.

Such should be the shepherd in the Church who, like Paul, becomes all things to all men, so that the sick may find healing in him; the sad, joy; the desperate, hope; the ignorant, instruction; those in doubt, advice; the penitent, forgiveness and comfort and finally, everyone, whatever is necessary for salvation. And so Christ, when He wished to appoint the chief teachers of the world and of the Church, did not limit Himself to saying to His disciples: You are the light of the world but also added these words: A city seated on a mountain cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle and put it under a measure but upon a candlestick, that it may shine to all who are in the house. Those churchmen err, who imagine that it is by brilliant preaching, rather than by holiness of and all-embracing love, they fulfil their office.” – St Peter Canisius SJ (1521-1597) Doctor of the Church (Sermon excerpt).

PRAYER – O God, Who gave to Thy people, blessed Bonaventure, as a minister of salvation, grant, we beseech Thee, that we who cherished him on earth as a teacher of life, may be found worthy to have him as an intercessor in heaven. 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).

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, QUOTES on CHASTITY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FASTING, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on REPARATION, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, SAINT of the DAY, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The HEART, The HOLY SPIRIT, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 29 May – ‘ … Offer your whole self, your whole life …’

One Minute Reflection – 29 May – Sunday within the Octave of Ascension – 1 Peter 4:7-11, John 15:26-27; 16:1-4 and the Memorial of St Maria Magdalena de’ Pazzi O.Carm (1566-1607)

Yes, the hour is coming, for everyone who kills you, to think he is offering worship to God.” – John 16:2

REFLECTION – “I urge you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice” (Rm 12,1). With this plea the Apostle Paul raises all men to participation in the priesthood… We do not look outside ourselves for something to offer God but bring with us and within us, something to sacrifice to God for our own advantage… “I urge you by the mercies of God.” Brothers, this sacrifice is in Christ’s image, He Who laid down His life here below and offered it for the life of the world. Indeed He made a living sacrifice of His Body, Who yet lives after being killed. In so great a sacrifice, death was destroyed, removed by the sacrifice… Hence martyrs are born at the time of their death and begin to live as their life ends; they live when they are killed and shine in Heaven when people on earth think they have been snuffed out…

The prophet sang: “You did not ask for sacrifice or oblation but a body you have prepared for me” (Ps 39[40],7). Become both the sacrifice that is offered and the one who offers it to God. Do not lose what God’s power has granted you. Put on the cloak of holiness. Take up the belt of chastity. May Christ be the veil over your head; the cross, the breastplate that gives you perseverance. Keep in your heart the sacrament of Holy Scripture. May your prayer burn constantly, like a sweet-smelling fragrance to God. Take up “the sword of the Spirit” (Eph 6,17), may your heart be the altar where, without fear, you may offer your whole self, your whole life…

Offer your faith, to make reparation for unbelief; offer your fasting, to put an end to voraciousness; offer your chastity, that sensuality may die; be fervent, that wrongdoing may cease; exercise mercy, to end avarice and to suppress foolishness, offer your holiness. Thus will your life become your offering, if it has not been wounded by sin. Your body lives, yes, it lives, each time that, putting evil to death within you, you offer living virtues to God. ” – St Peter Chrysologus (c 400-450)Doctor of Homilies,” Bishop of Ravenna, Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon 108)

PRAYER – O God, lover of chastity, Who endowed with heavenly gifts, blessed Mary Magdalena, a virgin on fire with love for You, grant that we, who keep this feast-day in her honour, may imitate her by purity and love. 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).

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the KING, GOD ALONE!, JUNE-THE SACRED HEART, QUOTES on GOOD WORKS, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SACRED SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The HOLY SPIRIT, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD

Quote/s of the Day – 18 March – St Cyril of Jerusalem

Quote/s of the Day – 18 March – The Memorial of St Cyril of Jerusalem (c 313-386) Bishop of Jerusalem, Confessor and Father & Doctor of the Church

For His body, has been given to you
under the appearance of bread
and His blood, under the appearance of wine,
so that, when you have partaken
of the body and blood of Christ,
you might be one body and one blood with Him.
So shall we become Christ-bearers [“Christophers”].
His body and blood are diffused through all our members – see, then,
how we become participants

in the divine nature!

Do not rejoice in the Cross only in times of peace,
preserve the same faith in times of persecution.
Do not be a friend to Jesus in times of peace alone,
only to become His enemy in times of war.
You are now receiving forgiveness for your sins
and the spiritual gifts lavishly bestowed by your King so,
when war breaks out, fight valiantly for your King.

Our actions have a tongue of their own,
they have an eloquence of their own,
even when the tongue is silent.
For deeds prove the lover more than words
.”

His action is preceded
by the beaming rays of His light and knowledge.
He comes with the truth of the real Protector;
for He comes to save, to lead, to teach, to counsel,
to strengthen, to console,
to illumine in the first place the mind of the person
who receives Him
and through that person‘s works,
the minds of others.

MORE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/03/18/quote-s-of-the-day-18-march-st-cyril-of-jerusalem/

On the Twofold Coming of Christ
HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/12/01/thought-for-the-day-1-december-on-the-twofold-coming-of-christ-st-cyril-of-jerusalem/

The Holy Catholic Church

St Cyril of Jerusalem (c 313-386)
Father and Doctor of theChurch

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, GOD ALONE!, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, MARTYRS, MODESTY, ON the SAINTS, POETRY, QUOTES on BAD CONVERSATION, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY, THE EPIPHANY of the LORD, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Quote/s of the Day – 21 February – St Robert Southwell

Quote/s of the Day – 21 February – St Robert Southwell SJ (1561-1595)

We … are under an obligation
to be the light of the world
by the modesty of our behaviour,
the fervour of our charity,
the innocence of our lives
and the example of our virtues.
Thus shall we be able
to raise the lowered prestige
of the Catholic Church
and, to build up again,
the ruins that others by their vices have caused.
Others, by their wickedness,
have branded the Catholic Faith
with a mark of shame,
we must strive,
with all our strength, to cleanse it
from its ignominy
and to restore it
to its pristine glory!

Christianity is warfare
and Christians are spiritual soldiers
.”

Not where I breathe
but where I love,
I live.”

When Fortune smiles,
I smile to think,
how quickly she will frown
.”

Where sin was hatched,
let tears now wash the nest
.”

The path to Heaven is narrow,
rough and full of wearisome
and trying ascents,
nor can it be trodden without great toil
and, therefore, wrong is their way,
gross their error
nd assured their ruin,
who, after the testimony
of so many thousands of Saints,
will not learn where to settle their footing!

“The Epiphany”
By St Robert Southwell SJ (1561-1595)
Martyr

To blaze the rising of this glorious sun
A glittering star appeareth in the east
Whose sight to pilgrim toil three sages won
To seek the light they long had in request,
And by this star to nobler star they pace
Whose arms did their desired sun embrace.

Still was the sky wherein these planets shined
And want the cloud that did eclipse their rays,
Yet through this cloud their passage they did find,
And pierced these sages’ hearts by secret ways,
Which made them know, the Ruler of the skies
By Infant tongue and looks of babish eyes.

Heaven at her light, earth blusheth at her pride
And of their pomp these peers ashamed be,
Their crowns, their robes, their train they set aside
When God’s poor cottage, clouts and crew they see,
All glorious things their glory now despise
Since God contempt doth more than glory prize.

Three gifts they bring, three gifts they bear away,
For Incense, Myrrh and Gold, Faith, Hope and Love
And with their gifts the givers’ hearts do stay,
Their mind from Christ, no parting can remove,
His humble state, His stall, His poor retinue
They fancy more than all their rich revenue.

St Robert Southwell SJ (1561-1595)
Priest and Martyr

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, St PAUL!, The HEART, The HOLY SPIRIT, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 20 February – ‘ … He has done his part. ..,’

One Minute Reflection – 20 February – Sexagesima – 2 Cor. 11:19-33; 12:1-9, Luke 8:4-15

But that upon good ground, these are they who, with a right and good heart, having heard the word, hold it fast and bear fruit in patience.” – Luke 8:15

REFLECTION – “Note that Jesus does not say: The careless received some seed and lost it, the rich received other seed and choked it and the superficial received some seed and betrayed it. It is not His intention to rebuke them severely, lest He should cast them into despair. Christ leaves the reproof to the conscience of His hearers. Remember also in the parable of the net ,that much was gathered in, that was unprofitable. But He speaks this parable as if to anoint His disciples and to teach them, that they are not to be despondent even though those lost, may be more than those who receive the word. It was with this same ease that the Lord Himself continued to sow, even He who fully foreknew the outcomes.

But why would it be reasonable to sow among thorns or on rocks or on the pathway? With regard to the seeds and the earth, it cannot sound very reasonable. But in the case of human souls and their instructions, it is praiseworthy and greatly to be honoured. For the farmer might be laughed at for doing this, since it is impossible for a rock to bear fruit. It is not likely that the path will become anything but a path or the thorns anything but thorns. But with respect to the rational soul, this is not so predictable. For here, there is such a thing as the rock changing and becoming rich land. Here it is possible, that the wayside might no longer be trampled upon or lie open to all who pass by but that it may become a fertile field. In the case of the soul, the thorns may be destroyed and the seed enjoy full security. For had it been impossible, this Sower would not have sown. And if the reversal did not take place in all, this is no fault of the Sower but of the souls who are unwilling to be changed. He has done His part. If they betrayed what they received of Him, He is blameless, the Exhibitor of such love to humanity.

But mark this carefully: there is more than one road to destruction! There are differing ones and wide apart from one another. For they who are like the wayside are the coarse-minded and indifferent and careless but those on the rock, such as fail, from willed weakness only.” – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Archbishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church (The Gospel of Matthew: Homily 44).

PRAYER St Paul’s Prayer – Ephesians 3:14-21

For this reason, I bow my knees
before the Father, from Whom
every family in heaven and on earth
takes its name.
I pray that, according to the riches
of His glory, He may grant
that you may be strengthened
in your inner being with power through His Spirit
and that Christ may dwell
in your hearts through faith,
as you are being rooted and grounded in love.
I pray that you may have the power
to comprehend, with all the Saints,
what is the breadth and length
and height and depth
and to know, the love of Christ
that surpasses knowledge,
so that you may be filled
with all the fullness of God.
Now to Him Who, by the power at work within us,
is able to accomplish abundantly,
far more than all we can ask or imagine.
To Him be glory in the Church
and in Christ Jesus,
to all generations, forever and ever.
Amen.

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on WATCHING, QUOTES on WISDOM, The HEART, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 8 February – ‘But, it depends on us, if He does not always enter or always remain.’ – St Ambrose

One Minute Reflection – 8 February – The Memorial of St John of Matha (1160-1213) Confessor – Sirach 31:8-11, Matthew 12:35-40

Let your loins be girt about and your lamps burning and you yourselves ,like men waiting for their master’s return from the wedding; so that when he comes and knocks, they may straightaway open to him. Blessed are those servants whom the master, on his return, shall find watching.” – Luke 12:35-37

REFLECTION – “God, the Word, stirs up the lazy and arouses the sleeper. For indeed, someone who comes knocking at the door is always wanting to come in. But, it depends on us, if He does not always enter or always remain. May your door be open to Him Who comes; open your soul, enlarge your spiritual capacities, that you may discover the riches of simplicity, the treasures of peace and sweetness of grace. Expand your heart, run to meet the Sun of that Eternal Light that “enlightens everyone” (Jn 1,9). It is certain, that this true Light shines for all but, if anyone shuts their windows, then they themselves shut themselves off from this Eternal Light.

So even Christ remains outside, if you shut the door of your soul. It is true that He could enter but He does not want to use force, He does not put those who refuse under pressure. Descended from the Virgin, born from her womb, He shines throughout the universe to give light to all. Those who long to receive the Light, that shines with an everlasting brightness, open up to Him. No night comes to intervene. Indeed, the sun we see each day gives way to night’s darkness but the Sun of justice (Mal 3,20) knows no setting, for Wisdom is not overcome by evil.” – St Ambrose (340-397) Bishop of Milan and Father and Doctor of the Church – (12th Sermon on Psalm 118).

PRAYER – All-powerful, eternal God and Father, grant us the grace of Your Spirit and fill us with the light of understanding and love. May we learn to truly pray and by our prayers to entreat You to bless us in Your goodness and lead us to true faith in Your eternal light and Word sent to redeem us. May we always be waiting and prepared to open the door of our hearts to Jesus Christ our Lord, who comes in light, love and peace. Grant that by the prayers of blessed Saint John of Matha we may be strengthened. Holy Mother, be our protection and our guide. We make our prayer through Jesus Christ, our Lord with the Holy Spirit, God now and forever, amen.

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One Minute Reflection – 28 January – ‘ … O man, send your treasure on, send it ahead into Heaven …’

One Minute Reflection – 28 January – Memorial of St Peter Nolasco (c 1182–c 1256) Confessor – 1 Cor. 4:9-14, Luke 12:32-34

“For where your treasure is,
there also will your heart be.
” – Luke 12:34

REFLECTION – “All this is what that treasure brings about. Either through almsgiving, it raises the heart of a man into Heaven, or through greed it buries it in the earth. That is why He said, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
O man, send your treasure on, send it ahead into Heaven, or else your God-given soul will be buried in the earth! Gold comes from the depth of the earth — the soul, from the highest Heaven. Clearly it is better ,to carry the gold to where the soul resides, than to bury the soul, in the mine of the gold. That is why God orders those who will serve in His Army here below, to fight as men stripped of concern for riches and unencumbered by anything. To these He has granted the privilege of reigning in Heaven.” – St Peter Chrysologus (c 400-450) Bishop of Ravenna, “Doctor of Homilies” Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon 22)

PRAYER – O God, You Who, as an example of Your love, divinely taught St Peter to enrich Your Church with new offspring, a family of Religious devoted to the ransom of the faithful, grant by his intercession, that we may be released from the slavery of sin and rejoice in lasting freedom in heaven. 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.

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Thought for the Day – 24 January – Following Jesus, the Divine Model

Thought for the Day – 24 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Following Jesus, the Divine Model

“Jesus is the Divine Model, Whom we ought to follow and imitate.
In Him, the virtues possess both the infinite splendour of the Divinity and the gentle appeal of glorified Humanity.
Jesus does not dazzle us with His brightness but kindly invites us to love and follow Him.
“Learn from me” He says, “for I am meek and humble of heart and you will find rest for your souls” (Mt 11:29).

After He has indicated humility, meekness and interior peace, as the foundations of the spiritual life, He invites us to take up the yoke of His law and assures us, that we shall find it light (Mt 11).

If we follow Jesus, even though we are bowed with Him, beneath the weight of the Cross, we shall experience, even in this life, a reflection of the peace and joy which will be our reward in Heaven.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/01/24/thought-for-the-day-24-january-following-jesus/
PART TWO HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/07/11/thought-for-the-day-11-july-following-jesus/

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Quote/s of the Day – 2 January – Jesus

Quote/s of the Day – 2 January – “Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus”

And this is his commandment,
that we should believe
in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ …

1 John 3:23

Nothing so curbs the onset of anger,
so allays the upsurge of pride.
It cures the wound of envy,
controls unbridled extravagance
and quenches the flame of lust.
It cools the thirst of covetousness
and banishes the itch of unclean desire…
For when I Name Jesus,
I set before myself,
a Man Who is meek and humble of heart,
kind, prudent, chaste, merciful,
flawlessly upright and holy
in the eyes of all
and this same Man is the all-powerful God
Whose way of life heals me,
Whose support is my strength.

St Bernard (1090-1153)
Mellifluous Doctor of the Church

(Sermon 15 On the Song of Songs)

Was it not through the brilliance
and sweet savour of this Name,
that God called us into
His marvellous Light?

St Bernardine of Siena (1380-1444)

“If thou art bound down by sickness,
if sorrows weary thee,
if thou art trembling with fear,
invoke the name of Jesus.

St Lawrence Justinian (1381-1456)

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One Minute Reflection – 4 December – ‘ … If He is within us, who can lead us astray?…’

One Minute Reflection – 4 December – “Month of the Immaculate Conception” – Saturday of the First Week of Advent – Readings: : Isaiah 30:19-21, 23-26; Psalm 147: 1-6; Matthew 9:35-10:1,5a,6-8

At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with pity for them because they were troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd.” – Matthew 9:36

REFLECTION – “From now on we are celebrating, with all our hearts, the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and this is nothing other than what we ought to do, since He has not just come TO us but FOR us. As for the Lord, He has no need of good things from us: the greatness of the grace He has shown us, clearly manifests the depth of our need. We assess the gravity of a sickness by what it costs to cure it …

So we needed a Saviour to come to us, for the state in which we found ourselves, rendered His presence indispensable. May the Saviour come quickly, then! May He come to live in our midst, by faith, with all the wealth of His grace. May He come to draw us out of our blindness and free us from our infirmities, taking control of our weakness! If He is within us, who can lead us astray? If He is on our side, what can we not do in Him, Who is our strength? (Phil 4:13). “If he is for us who can be against us?” (Rm 8:31). Jesus Christ is an unfailing Advocate who can neither be deceived not deceive; He is a powerful Helper Whose Strength can never be spent … . He is the very Wisdom of God, the very Strength of God (1 Cor 1:24) … So let us all run together to such a Master, in every undertaking implore His aid, in the midst of our struggles entrust ourselves to so certain a Defender. If He has come into the world, already it is to live in our midst, WITH us and FOR us.” – St Bernard (1091-1153) Cistercian Monk and the last Father and Doctor of the Church – 7th Sermon for Advent

PRAYER – Lord, to free man from his sinful state, You sent Your only Son into this world. Grant to us, who in faith and love, wait for His coming, Your gift of grace and the reward of true freedom. Be born in us O Lord! We ask our most pure Virgin Mary to guide us in her ways. We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.

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Quote/s of the Day – 2 December – ‘… This is my firm rock …’

Quote/s of the Day – 2 December – Thursday of the First week of Advent – Readings: Isaiah 26: 1-6; Psalm 118: 1 and 8-9, 19-21, 25-27; Matthew 7: 21, 24-27

Not everyone who says to me,
‘Lord, Lord,’
will enter the kingdom of heaven
but only the one,
who does the will of my Father in heaven
.”

Matthew 7:21

“On each occasion I say:
‘Lord, Thy will be done!
It’s not what this, or that one, wants
but, what You want me to do.’
This is my fortress,

this is my firm rock,
this is my sure support.

St John Chrysostom (347-407)
Father and Doctor of the Church

He who is his own master
is a scholar under a fool.

St Bernard (1090-1153)
Mellifluous Doctor

“Obedience unites us so closely to God
that, in a way, it transforms us into Him,
so that we have no other will but His.
If obedience is lacking,
even prayer cannot be pleasing to God.

St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)
Doctor Angelicus
Doctor Communis

Love Him, then, keep Him as a friend.
He will not leave you as others do,
or let you suffer lasting death.
Sometime, whether you will or not,
you will have to part with everything.
Cling, therefore, to Jesus in life and death,
trust yourself to the glory of Him,
Who alone can help you
when all others fail.“

Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471)
(Book 2 Ch 7)

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Quote/s of the Day – 23 November – St Pope Clement I

Quote/s of the Day – 23 November – The Mmemorial of St Pope Clement I (Died c 101) Martyr, Apostolic Father

Through Him, our gaze penetrates
he heights of heaven
and we see, as in a mirror,
the most holy Face of God.
Through Christ,
the eyes of our hearts are opened
and our weak and clouded understanding,
reaches up toward the light.

This, beloved, is the way
in which we found our salvation,
Jesus Christ, the High Priest
Who offers our gifts,
the Patron and Helper
in our weakness (Heb 10:20; 7:27; 4:15).
It is through Him,
that we look straight at the heavens above.
Through Him, we see mirrored,
God’s faultless and transcendent countenance.
Through Him, the eyes of our heart were opened.
Through Him, our unintelligent
and darkened mind
shoots up into the light.
Through Him, the Master was pleased
to let us taste the knowledge
that never fades …”

Charity unites us to God.
There is nothing unkind in charity,
nothing arrogant.
Charity knows no schism,
does not rebel,
does all things in concord.
In charity all the elect of God
have been made perfect.

Look at the holy Apostles.
It was by sinful jealousy
that Peter was subjected to tribulation,
not once or twice but many times;
it was in that way, that he bore his witness
before leaving us for his well-earned place in glory.
And Paul, because of jealousy and contention,
has become the very type of endurance rewarded.
… In him we have one of the greatest
of all examples of endurance.
… [And] we too, are in the same arena
and have the same conflict before us.

Let us fix our thoughts
on the Blood of Christ
and reflect how Precious that Blood is,
in God’s eyes,
inasmuch, as its outpouring
for our salvation,
has opened the grace of repentance
to all mankind.

St Pope Clement I (c 35 – c 99)

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One Minute Reflection – 16 November – ‘Here is a sweet remedy, when downhearted and small … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 16 November – Readings: 2 Maccabees 6: 18-31; Psalm 3: 2-7; Luke 19: 1-10 – The Memorial of St Gertrude the Great (1256-1302)

So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree in order to see Jesus …”- Luke 19:4

REFLECTION – “Here is a sweet remedy when downhearted and small – we should do what Zaccheus did. He was not tall and climbed a tree in order to see God. His zeal merited him to hear these sweet words: “Zaccheus, go home for today I need to dine with you.

We should do the same when we are low, when our hearts are constricted and lacking in charity – we should climb the Tree of the most Holy Cross and there we shall see, we shall touch God! There we shall find the fire of His ineffable charity, the love which caused Him to run, even to the insults of the Cross which raised Him up and made Him ardently desire the honour of His Father and our salvation, with hunger and thirst. … If we wish, if we are not prevented by our negligence, we may accomplish these words in ourselves, emanating from the lips of Truth, when we mount the Tree of the Cross: “when I am lifted up on high, I shall draw all things to myself” (Jn 12:32). Indeed, when the soul is thus raised up, it sees the blessings of the Father’s goodness and power…, it sees the mercy and lavishness of the Holy Spirit, that is to say, the inexpressible love holding Jesus bound to the Wood of the Cross. Nails and bonds cannot hold Him there, only charity… O climb this most holy Tree where hang the ripe fruits of all the virtues, that the body of the Son of God bears – ardently hasten. Dwell within the holy and sweet love of God. O sweet Jesus, Jesus love.” – St Catherine of Siena OP (1347-1380) Doctor of the Church, Co-Patron of Europe (Letter 119 to the prior of the Olivetans

PRAYER – Lord our God, You made the heart of St Gertrude, the dwelling place of Your love. Lighten our darkness so that through her intercession, we may experience the joy of Your presence in our hearts and with Zaccheus, we may have you stay in our home. We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.

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Quote/s of the Day – 7 November – The Order of Preachers

Quote/s of the Day – 7 November – The Memorial of
All Saints of the Order of Preachers

Arm yourself with prayer,
instead of a sword;
be clothed with humility,
instead of fine raiment.

We must sow the seed,
Not hoard it
.”

St Dominic’s Blessing
By St Dominic de Guzman (1170-1221)

May God the Father,
who made us, bless us.
May God the Son,
send His healing among us.
May God the Holy Spirit,
move within us
and give us eyes to see with,
ears to hear with,
and hands, that Your work,
might be done.
May we walk and preach
the word of God to all.
May the angel of peace
watch over us
and lead us at last,
by God’s grace,
to the Kingdom.
Amen

St Dominic de Guzman OP (1170-1221)

“I send you a very little word,
THE WORD,
made little in the crib,
THE WORD,
made flesh for us ….
THE WORD,
of salvation and grace
THE WORD,
of sweetness and glory
THE WORD
Who is good and gentle –
JESUS CHRIST!

Blessed Jordan of Saxony OP (1190-1237)

It is by the path of love,
which is charity,
that God draws near to man
and man to God.
But where charity is not found,
God cannot dwell.
If, then, we possess charity,
we posses God,
for ‘God is Charity’
(1 John 4:8).

St Albert the Great OP (1200-1280)
Doctor of the Church

To convert somebody,
go and take them by the hand
and guide them
.”

Charity is
the form,
mover,
mother
and root
of all
the virtues.

To love is to
will the good
of the other.

The greatest kindness
one can render
to any man
consists in leading him
from error to truth.

O Jesus, Mary’s Son!
By St Thomas Aquinas OP (1225-1274)
Doctor Angelicus, Doctor communis

Hail to Thee! True body sprung
From the Virgin Mary’s womb!
The same that on the cross was hung
And bore for man the bitter doom.
Thou Whose side was pierced and flowed
Both with water and with blood.
Suffer us to taste of Thee
In our life’s last agony.
O kind, O loving One!
O Jesus, Mary’s Son!
Amen

St Thomas Aquinas OP (1225-1274)

Be strong and kill yourself
with the sword of hate and love,
then you will not hear the insults
and abuse. which the enemies
of the Church throw at you.
Your eyes will not see anything,
which seems impossible,
or the sufferings,
which may follow
but only the light of faith
and in that light ,
everything is possible
and remember ,
God never lays greater burdens
on us than we can bear.

What is it you want to change?
Your hair, your face, your body?
Why? For God is in love with all those things
and He might weep when they are gone!

St Catherine of Siena OP (1347-1380)
Doctor of the Church

Compassion, my dear Brother,
is preferable to cleanliness.
Reflect that with a little soap,
I can easily clean my bed covers
but even with a torrent of tears,
I would never wash from my soul,
the stain, that my harshness toward
the unfortunate would create
.”

St Martin de Porres OP (1579-1639)

Just a few of the great Dominicans – Ana OP – with Love

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Quote/s of the Day – 5 November – Jesuits

Quote/s of the Day – 5 November – The Memorial of All Jesuit Saints and Blesseds

Hate what the world seeks
and seek, what it avoids
.”

God’s love calls us to move beyond fear.
We ask God for the courage
to abandon ourselves unreservedly,
so that we might be moulded
by God’s grace,
even as we cannot see
where that path may lead us.

Act as if everything depended on you;
trust as if everything depended on God
.”

St Ignatius Loyola SJ (1491-1556)

I Beg of You, My Lord
By St Peter Faber (1506-1546)

I beg of You, my Lord,
to remove anything which separates
me from You
and You from me.
Remove anything that makes me unworthy
of Your sight,
Your control,
Your reprehension;
of Your speech and conversation,
of Your benevolence and love.
Cast from me every evil
that stands in the way of my seeing You,
hearing, tasting, savouring and touching You,
fearing and being mindful of You,
knowing, trusting, loving and possessing You;
being conscious of Your Presence
and, as far as may be, enjoying You.
This is what I ask for myself
and earnestly desire from You.
Amen

What a tragedy,
how many souls
are being shut out of heaven
and falling into hell,
thanks to you!

St Francis Xavier SJ (1506-1552)

This death … has already levelled
his bow to strike me.
Is it not prudent to prevent its stroke,
by dying now to the world,
that at my death,
I may live to God?

St Francis Borgia (1510-1572)

“We ought to instruct with meekness
those whom heresy has made bitter and suspicious
and has estranged from orthodox Catholics,
… Thus, by whole-hearted charity and goodwill,
we may win them over to us in the Lord.

St Peter Canisius SJ (1521-1397)
Doctor of the Church

We … are under an obligation
to be the light of the world
by the modesty of our behaviour,
the fervour of our charity,
the innocence of our lives
and the example of our virtues.
Thus shall we be able
to raise the lowered prestige
of the Catholic Church
and, to build up again,
the ruins that others by their vices have caused.
Others, by their wickedness,
have branded the Catholic Faith
with a mark of shame,
we must strive,
with all our strength, to cleanse it
from its ignominy
and to restore it
to its pristine glory!

The Burning Babe,

As I in hoary winter’s night
stood shivering in the snow,
Surprised I was with sudden heat
which made my heart to glow;
And lifting up a fearful eye to view
what fire was near,
A pretty babe all burning bright
did in the air appear;
Who, scorchëd with excessive heat,
such floods of tears did shed
As though His floods should quench His flames
which with His tears were fed.
Alas, quoth He but newly born in fiery heats I fry,
Yet none approach to warm their hearts
or feel my fire but I!
My faultless breast the furnace is,
the fuel wounding thorns,
Love is the fire and sighs the smoke,
the ashes shame and scorns;
The fuel justice layeth on
and mercy blows the coals,
The metal in this furnace wrought
are men’s defiled souls,
For which, as now on fire I am
to work them to their good,
So will I melt into a bath to wash them in my blood.
With this He vanished out of sight
and swiftly shrunk away,
And straight I called unto mind
that it was Christmas day.

St Robert Southwell SJ (1561-1595)
Priest and Martyr

When He takes away
what He once lent us,
His purpose is to
store our treasure elsewhere,
more safely and bestow on us,
those very blessings,
that we ourselves
would most choose to have.

(From A Letter to His Mother)

St Aloysius Gonzaga SJ (1568-1591)

The Catholic religion was the religion of your forefathers
and the only one Jesus Christ founded; –
the one which He promised would endure
till the end of time.
It is in the Catholic religion alone
that you can save your soul.

How long are you going to be deaf to His call?
Or are you going to lose your soul,
which Jesus Christ bought at the price
of His Precious Blood?

St John Francis Régis SJ (1597-1640)

… Make use of Our Lord
as an armour which covers [us] all about,
by means of which [we] shall resist
every device of [our] enemies.
You shall then be my Strength, O my God!
You shall be my Guide,
my Director,
my Counsellor,
my Patience,
my Knowledge,
my Peace,
my Justice
and my Prudence.

He promises to be [our] strength,
in proportion to the trust
which [we] place in Him.

St Claude de la Colombiere SJ (1641-1682)
“Apostle of the Sacred Heart”

The May Magnificat
By Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ (1844-1889)

May is Mary’s month and I
Muse at that and wonder why:
Her feasts follow reason,
Dated due to season-

Candlemas, Lady Day:
But the Lady Month, May,
Why fasten that upon her,
With a feasting in her honour?
Ask of her, the mighty Mother:
Her reply puts this other
Question: What is Spring?
Growth in everything-
All things rising, all things sizing
Mary sees, sympathising
With that world of good,
Nature’s motherhood.

Well but there was more than this:
Spring’s universal bliss
Much, had much to say
To offering Mary May.

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Our Morning Offering – 7 September – Christ be Near

Our Morning Offering – 7 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary”

Christ be Near
Excerpt from St Patrick’s Breastplat
St Patrick (c 386 – 461)

Christ be near, at either hand,
Christ behind, before me stand,
Christ with me, where’er I go,
Christ around, above, below.

Christ be in my heart and mind,
Christ within my soul enshrined,
Christ control, my wayward heart,
Christ abide and ne’er depart.

Christ my Life and only Way,
Christ my Lantern, night and day,
Christ be my unchanging Friend,
Guide and Shepherd to the end.

We have this prayer and his own story in one of the certainly authentic writings of this beloved Saint Patrick – his Confessio, which is, above all, an act of homage to God, for having called Patrick, unworthy sinner, to the apostolate.

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 1 September – ‘ … Rescue our life, Lord … ‘

Quote/s of the Day – 1 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of Mary” – Readings: Colossians 1: 1-8; Psalms 52: 10, 11; Luke 4: 38-44

“And standing over her,
he commanded the fever and it left her.
And immediately rising,
she ministered to them.”

Luke 4:39

May We Confess Your Name to the End
By St Cyprian of Carthage (200-258)
Bishop and Martyr
Father of the Church

Good God,
may we confess Your Name to the end.
May we emerge unmarked
and glorious from the traps
and darkness of this world.
As You have bound us together
by charity and peace
and as together
we have persevered under persecution,
so may we also rejoice together
in Your heavenly kingdom.
Amen

St Cyprian of Carthage (200-258)

“We implore You,
O All-Holy, Long-Suffering
Life and Restoration,
Source of goodness,
look down from heaven
and visit all those
who ever trust in You;
rescue our life, Lord,
from all constraint and affliction,
and, in the faith of truth, guide us all.
At the prayers of the
Immaculate Mother of God and Virgin,
Save your world
and those in the world
and spare us all,
You who, for us,
became man without change,
only Lover of mankind.”

St Romanos the Melodios (c 490-c 556)

“Act as if everything depended on you;
trust as if everything depended on God.”

St Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556)

Do you know what those people are like
who are not sustained by that holy Word
or who abuse it?
They are like the sick without a doctor,
like a traveller who has gone astray without a guide,
like a poor man without means.
Let us rather say, my brethren,
that it is altogether impossible
to love God and please Him,
without being nourished by this divine Word!”

St John-Marie Baptiste Vianney (1786-1859)

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, I BELIEVE!, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on SACRED SCRIPTURE, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 31 August – ‘ … What is impossible to the person who believes? …’

One Minute Reflection – 31 August – “Month of the Immaculate Heart” – Readings: Thessalonians 5: 1-6, 9-11; Psalms 27: 1, 4, 13-14; Luke 4: 31-37

And they were all amazed and said to one another, “What is this word? For with authority and power he commands the unclean spirits and they come out.” – Luke 4:36

REFLECTION – “God’s word is living and effective, sharper than any two-edged sword.” (Heb 4:12). It acts in the creation of the world, in the world’s operation and in its redemption. For what is more effective and stronger? “Who can tell the mighty deeds of the Lord, or proclaim all his praises?” (Ps 106:2).

The Word’s effectiveness manifests itself in its works; it also manifests itself in preaching. The Word does not return to God without having produced its effect but, all to whom it is sent, benefit from it (Isa 55:11). It is “effective and sharper than any two-edged sword” when it is received with faith and love. What is impossible to the person who believes, what is difficult to the person who loves? When the Words of God ring out, they pierce the believer’s heart like “sharp arrows of a warrior.” (Ps 120:4) They enter the heart like spears and settle in its most intimate depths. Yes, this Word is sharper than a two-edged sword, for it is more incisive than any other strength or power, more subtle than every subtlety of the human genius, sharper than every learned perception by the human word.” – Baldwin of Forde O.Cist ( c 1125– 1190) – Cistercian Abbot, Bishop, then Archbishop of Canterbury – Homily 6 on Heb 4:12 ; PL 204, 451-453

PRAYER – God our Father, Your rule is a rule of love, Your providence is full of mercy for Your people. Through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin, Mother of the Word made flesh and His Immaculate Mother, grant the spirit of wisdom and understanding in Your Word, Your Son Jesus Christ. Grant that by the light of His Resurrection we may know our eternal home and strive to attain eternal joy there with You. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Thought for the Day – 8 August – The Eucharistic Life

Thought for the Day – 8 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Eucharistic Life

“The Eucharist in our spiritual life could be compared to the sun in the physical life of the world.
The sun gives light, heat and life.
We can imagine what a terrible thing it would be if the sun set one evening and never rose again!
Darkness would envelop the earth once more as at the beginning of creation.
The cold would become relentless and life would be gradually extinguished everywhere.
Men could, for sometime, depend on their reserves of artificial light to illuminate their creeping agony but, life would slowly decline, until it ended in death for everything and for everybody.
Such would be the spiritual life without Jesus, especially without Jesus in the Blessed Eucharist, Who lives amongst us as our only true Friend, Who hears, helps and nourishes us.

He is the sun of our souls, the source of our enlightenment, fervour and consolation.
Are we weary and discouraged beneath the weight of our daily cross and of our sins?
Let us go to Jesus and He will help us to carry our cross.
He will wash away our sins and give us the supernatural strength, never to sin again.

Let us unite ourselves to Jesus, by frequent Communion, by a daily visit to Him in the Tabernacle and, by making a spiritual communion whenever we cannot receive Him in the Blessed Eucharist.
Let us make fervent aspirations, whenever we find our cross too heavy for us or when we are strongly tempted.

Many people go on long pilgrimages to famous Sanctuaries, such as Lourdes, Fatima and the Holy Places of Palestine.
These are certainly worthwhile but, we should not forget that the greatest sanctuary of all is close at hand.
It is in every Church which contains Jesus in the Tabernacle.
Here, we have Jesus Himself, really present and anxious to listen to us and to help us.
The Saints could find no greater joy on earth than to to pray before the Blessed Sacrament.
We are all called to be saints!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, FATHERS of the Church, MARTYRS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 6 August – Courage – Put on Christ!

Thought for the Day – 6 August – The Memorial of St Sixtus II (Died 258) Pope and Marty

St Sixtus II was Consecrated Bishop of the Church of Rome in 257. The following year, while celebrating the sacred liturgy over the tomb of a Martyr in the cemetery or Catacombs of Saint Callistus,
he was arrested by soldiers carrying out the edict of the Emperor Valerian.
On the same day, 6 August, he was put to death along with his Deacons and buried in the same cemetary.
This excerpt from a letter by Saint Cyprian, the North African Bishop of Carthage who was later Martyred in the same persecution, appears in the Roman Catholic Office of Readings for the liturgical Memorial of St Sixtus.
May these words of St Cyprian give us the strength we need in our times, when all is darkness!

St Cyprian of Carthage (c 200 – c 258) Bishop and Martyr, Father of the Church

Courage – Put on Christ!

“Dear brother, the reason why I could not write to you immediately was, that all the clergy were embroiled in the heat of the conflict. They could not possibly leave, all of them having prepared themselves for divine and heavenly glory.
But now, the messengers have come back, those whom I sent to the City to find out and report the truth of whatever decrees had been made about us – for people have been imagining all sorts of different possibilities. Here, then, is the truth:

Valerian sent a rescript to the Senate, saying that Bishops, Presbyters and Deacons should all receive immediate punishment; that Senators, Knights, and other men of importance, should lose their rank and their property and if they still persisted in being Christians, they should lose their heads and that Matrons should be deprived of their property and be sent into exile. Members of Caesar’s own household, whether they had confessed their faith before or were only confessing it now, should be deprived of their property, bound in chains and sent as slaves to his estates.

To this command, Valerian attached a copy of the letters which he had sent to the Governors of the various Provinces about us and we daily await the arrival of these letters, bracing ourselves, each according to the strength of his faith, for the suffering that is to be endured, and looking forward to the help and mercy of the Lord and the crown of eternal life.

You should know, however, that Sixtus was Martyred in the cemetery on the sixth of August and four deacons with him. Moreover, the prefects in the City are daily pushing forward this persecution and anyone who is presented to them is martyred and all his property confiscated by the state.

I beg you to make these things known to the rest of our colleagues, so that through their encouragement, the whole brotherhood may be strengthened and made ready for the spiritual conflict – so that, each one of us, may think less of death and more of immortality – so that, everyone, dedicated to the Lord, with full faith and total courage, may rejoice in this confession and not fear it, for they know, that the soldiers of God and Christ ,are not destroyed, but crowned.
Dearest brother, always fare well in the Lord!”

St Cyprian

(Epist 80 – CSEL 3, 839-840)

Posted in "Follow Me", ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The TRANSFIGURATION

Quote/s of the Day – 6 August – ‘Those who go UP’

Quote/s of the Day – 6 August – Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord – Readings: Daniel 7: 9-10, 13-14; Psalm 97: 1-2, 5-6, 9; Peter 1: 16-19; Mark 9: 2-10

“This is my beloved Son.
Listen to him..”

Mark 9:7

“It is before those who go UP
that Jesus is transfigured
and not to those BELOW.
When He is transfigured,
His Face shines as the sun,
that He may be manifested to the children of light,
who have put off the works of darkness
and put on the armour of light..”

Origen (c 185-253)
Father of the Church

At His Transfiguration
Christ showed His disciples,
the splendour of His beauty,
to which He will shape and colour
those who are His:
‘He will reform our lowness
configured to the body of His glory.’”

St Thomas Aquinas (1225 – 1274)
Doctor of the Church

Posted in "Follow Me", ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, JANUARY month of THE MOST HOLY NAME of JESUS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, The HOLY NAME, The WORD, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Quote/s of the Day – 3 August – Trust

Quote/s of the Day – 3 August – “Month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary” – Readings: Numbers 12: 1-13; Psalm 51: 3-7, 12-13; 14: 22-36

Trust

“Lord, save me.”

Matthew 14:30

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

John 14:27

May We Confess Your Name to the End
By St Cyprian of Carthage (200-258)
Bishop and Martyr
Father of the Church

Good God,
may we confess Your Name to the end.
May we emerge unmarked
and glorious from the traps
and darkness of this world.
As You have bound us together
by charity and peace
and as together
we have persevered under persecution,
so may we also rejoice together
in Your heavenly kingdom.
Amen

St Cyprian of Carthage (200-258)

“We implore You,
O All-Holy, Long-Suffering
Life and Restoration,
Source of goodness,
look down from heaven
and visit all those
who ever trust in You;
rescue our life, Lord,
from all constraint and affliction,
and, in the faith of truth, guide us all.
At the prayers of the
Immaculate Mother of God and Virgin,
Save your world
and those in the world
and spare us all,
You who, for us,
became man without change,
only Lover of mankind.”

St Romanos the Melodios (c 490-c 556)

“Place all your trust in God,
let Him be your fear and your love.
He will answer for you,
He will do what is best for you.
You have here no lasting home.
You are a stranger and a pilgrim
wherever you may be
and you shall have no rest,
until you are wholly united with Christ.
Why do you look about here
when this is not the place of your repose?”

Thomas à Kempis CRSA (1380-1471)

“Act as if everything depended on you;
trust as if everything depended on God.”

St Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556)

“Throw yourself
into God’s arms.
He will carry you
when the road is rough.”

St John Baptiste de La Salle (1651-1719)

Posted in "Follow Me", ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ORIGINAL SIN, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 26 July – The Leaven of Life

Quote/s of the Day – 26 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Readings: Exodus 32: 15-24, 30-34; Psalms 106: 19-20, 21-22, 23; Matthew 13: 31-3

The Leaven of Life

“Just as the Father who has life sent me
and I have life because of the Father,
so the man who feeds on me
will have life because of me.”

John 6:57

“An inborn imperfection in our human dough
was removed, thanks to the leaven
that comes from His perfect body…
To complete what was missing,
in these human bodies of ours,
He gave something of Himself,
just as He gives Himself to be eaten …”

St Ephrem (306-373)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“Those who have been tricked into taking poison,
offset its harmful effect, by another drug.
The remedy, moreover,
just like the poison,
has to enter the system,
so that its remedial effect
may thereby spread through the whole body.
Similarly, having tasted the poison,
that is the fruit,
that dissolved our nature,
we were necessarily, in need of something, to reunite it.
Such a remedy had to enter into us,
so that it might, by its counteraction,
undo the harm the body had already encountered from the poison.
And what is this remedy?
Nothing else than the body
that proved itself superior to death
and became the source of our life.”

St Greogory of Nyssa (c 335– c 395)
Father of the Church

“The doctrine of Christ
is fittingly called leaven
because, the bread is Christ.”

St Anbrose (340-397)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“ … For He did not only give His Body but,
just as our flesh, drawn from the earth,
had lost its life and died through sin,
so He has introduced, so to speak,
another substance like a leaven,
this is His Body, the Body
sharing the same nature as ours but free from sin
and abounding in life.
And He has given it to all of us,
so that, fed with the banquet of this new food …
we might enter immortal life.”

St John Chrysostom (347-407)
Father ad Doctor of the Church

“Dust, so to speak,
had forcibly entered humanity’s eye;
earth had entered it,
had injured the eye
and it could not see the light.
… That physician made a salve for you.
And because He came, in such a way,
that by His flesh,
He might extinguish the faults of the flesh
and by His death He might kill death … ”

St Augustine (354-430)
Father and Doctor of the Church