Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on GOOD WORKS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Thought for the Day – 24 September – Fundamental Facts

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

Fundamental Facts

Eternity lies ahead.
Where the tree falls, there it will remain.
So it will be with us.
If we have to our credit works of virtue and of apostolic labour, death will be for us, as it was for St Francis, the good sister, who will release us from the bonds which tie us to this earth, so that the soul can soar to its longed-for haven of everlasting joy, in the company of God.
But, if we are so unfortunate, at this last moment, as to find ourselves in mortal sin, we shall be deprived forever of the sight of God and, as a result, of everlasting happiness.
We shall be hurled into the eternal abyss, where there is no light, nor hope and where torments will have no end!

While there is still time, let us meditate on these truths.
Remember – this hour, might be our last!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/09/26/thought-for-the-day-25-september-fundamental-facts/
PART TWO:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/01/21/thought-for-the-day-20-january-2/

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, ON the SAINTS, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on THE VOICE OF GOD, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES, The WILL of GOD

Thought for the Day – 19 July – The Voice of God – The Saints

Thought for the Day – 19 July – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Voice of God – The Saints

God speaks to us through His Saints.

The Saints are those in whom God dwells in such a special way that their entire personalities reflect Him.
They live the Gospel perfectly.

They have renounced themselves in order to belong completely to God.
Not only have they overcome their evil inclinations but, they have conquered themselves in the process of that Christian annihilation which, sublimates human nature, rather than destroys it.
They have enthroned God in the place of their own will and of their own ego, so that, like St Paul, they can claims:
It is no longer I that live but Christ lives in me.”

God still speaks to us through His Saints, for even in this troubled and [digital] age, there are pure and humble souls declared to God and the service of their fellowmen.
Whenever we encounter one of these privileged beings, whether in the pages of a book [or online] or in our actual surrounding world, let us pay attention to them and do our best to imitate their virtues.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/03/10/thought-for-the-day-17-july-the-voice-of-god-2/

Posted in MARIAN PRAYERS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on GRACE, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Thought for the Day – 9 May – The Cardinal Virtues of Mary

Thought for the Day – 9 May – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Cardinal Virtues of Mary

“Holy Mary, make the cardinal virtues flourish in my soul, as they did in yours.
May they light my way through life and show me the way to Heaven.
Protect me my Mother, when I am in danger of losing any of these virtues and obtain for me, from your Divine Son, Jesus, the grace which will nourish and restore them.
Amen.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/05/09/thought-for-the-day-9-may-the-cardinal-virtues-of-mary/
PART TWO:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/05/09/thought-for-the-day-9-may-the-cardinal-virtues-of-mary-2/

Posted in LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, OUR Cross, QUOTES on CONSOLATION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Thought for the Day – 3 April – THE CRUCIFIX

Thought for the Day – 3 April – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

THE CRUCIFIX

Let us weep for our sins and increase in love for our Divine Redeemer.
When we are oppressed by the weight of our own cross, we shall look at the Crucifix and find comfort.
When we are tempted, we shall grasp the Crucifix and turn away with horror from thoughts of sin and ingratitude.

The Crucifix will teach us, as it taught the Saints, the lesson of charity towards God and towards our neighbour.
It will teach us to hate sin and to love virtue.
If we cherish it during life, it will be our consolation to kiss the Crucifix at the moment of death.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/08/04/thought-for-the-day-4-august-the-crucifix/
PART TWO:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/09/25/thought-for-the-day-25-september-the-crucifix/

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 LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on VIRTUE, The 4th Glorious Mystery - The ASSUMPTION, THE ASSUMPTION, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Quote/s of the Day – 12 January – St Aelred

Quote/s of the Day – 12 January – The Memorial of St Aelred of Rievaulx (1110-1167) “St Bernard of the North”

If Saul, who “breathed murderous threats
against the disciples of the Lord” …
was the object of such mercy …
that he was “caught up to the third heaven,
whether in the body or out of the body,”
it is not surprising,
that the holy Mother of God –
who stayed beside her Son
through all the trials He endured,
from His cradle onwards –
should have been lifted up to Heaven,
even in her body
and exalted high above the Choirs of Angels.

“Charity may be
a very short word
but with its tremendous
meaning of pure love,
it sums up man’s
entire relation to God
and to his neighbour.

“Faith is not even a virtue,
unless it is expressed by love;
nor is hope,
unless it loves what it hopes for.

And if we look more closely,
do we not see,
that temperance is only love,
that no pleasure can seduce
?

that prudence, is only love,
that no error can mislead
;

that fortitude is only love,
courageously enduring adversity

and that justice, is only impartial love.
mitigating the injustices of this life?

Charity, therefore, begins with faith,
is exercised through the other virtues
but achieves perfection in itself
.”

St Aelred of Rievaulx O. Cist. (1110-1167)
St Bernard of the North

MORE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/01/12/quote-s-of-the-day-12-january-st-aelred-of-rievaulx/

Posted in GOD ALONE!, LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on VIRTUE, The BEATITUDES, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES, The KINGDOM of GOD

Thought for the Day – 1 December – The Blessedness of Those who Hunger and Thirst for Justice

Thought for the Day – 1 December – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Blessedness of Those
who Hunger and Thirst for Justice

Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for justice” says Jesus Christ, “for they shall be satified” (Mt 5:6).
These words oblige us to seek justice in our actions, if we desire the happiness which Our Lord promised to the just.

We must understand, of course, what is intended here by the word “justice.
It may be interpreted in two ways.
According to its most common meaning, justice is the cardinal virtue which obliges us to give every man his due.
Often in Sacred Scripture, however, the word is synonymous with perfection or holiness; that is, it is the synthesis of all the virtues.
It is in this sense, that Jesus employs the term when He says: “Seek first the kingdom of God and his justice and all these things shall be given you besides” (Mt 6:33).

In its fullest sense then, justice embraces our relations with God, with ourselves and with our neighbour.
In the first place, we must be just towards God and, therefore, in accordance with the Gospel precepts, we must “render to God the things that are God’s” (Mt 22:21).
Since everything belongs to God, our Creator and Redeemer, we must offer everything to Him, including ourselves, all that we are and all that we possess.
We have only obligations in regard to God and no rights because, we have received everything from Him.
We oughts to obey Him, therefore, as our supreme lawgiver.
We ought to adore Him and to love Him, with a greater love than we have for any creature or for ourselves because, He is the highest good, which merits all our love and which alone, can satisfy us.
We should express our love, moreover, by our actions and by the complete dedication of ourselves to His honour and glory.

Justice, then, is in fact, Christian perfection and is the synthesis of all the virtues.
That great pagan writer, Cicero, had already perceived this, when he wrote that “piety is the foundation of all the virtues” (Pro Plancio, 12:29) and that “piety is justice in regard to God” (De natura deorum, I, 4).
Justice in our relations with God, demands, that we adore, love and obey Him.
In this way, we lay the basis of all the virtues. “”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CHRIST the JUDGE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on BAD CONVERSATION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Thought for the Day – 24 July – The Particular and General Judgements

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

The Particular and General Judgements

It is appointed unto men to die once and after this comes the judgement” (Heb 9:27).

To have to appear before the Face of the Living God is terrifying for everybody.
How much more terrifying will it be for the sinner?
Weighed down by numberless sins, he will stand before the scrutinising gaze of God.
He will be able to hide nothing.
Everything will be evident and clear.
The Countenance of our Divine Redeemer, which was mild and merciful during life, will at that moment be that of a severe and just Judge.
After having scorned so many graces, after having spurned so many calls to conversion and so many secret inspirations to change his life, after dying unrepentant …behold the sinner in the presence of his Eternal Judge.
At that moment, he will hear the irrevocable sentence resounding in his ears “Depart from me, accursed ones, into the everlasting fire chich was prepared for the devil and his angels” (Mt 25:41).

This terrible condemnation will be publicly repeated, moreover, at the general judgement.
Memento mori!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE WORLD, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 23 July – Good ground

Quote/s of the Day – 23 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Readings: Exodus 20: 1-17; Psalms 19: 8, 9, 10, 11; Matthew 13: 18-23

“But he that received the seed upon good ground”

Matthew 13:23

“ If you would rise,
shun luxury,
for luxury lowers and degrades.“

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

“You have made us for Yourself
and our hearts are restless
until they rest in You.”

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

“Let us then learn from the Cross of Jesus
our proper way of living.
Should I say ‘living’ or, instead, ‘dying’?
Rather, both living and dying.
Dying to the world, living for God.
Dying to vices and living by the virtues.
Dying to the flesh but living in the spirit.
Thus in the Cross of Christ,
there is death
and in the Cross of Christ, there is life.
The death of death is there
and the life of life.
The death of sins is there
and the life of the virtues.
The death of the flesh is there
and the life of the spirit.
… It was fitting, that we,
who had fallen because of a tree,
might rise up because of a tree.”

St Aelred of Rievaulx (1110-1167)
“St Bernard of the North”

Posted in "Follow Me", ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, GOD ALONE!, I BELIEVE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on CONSOLATION, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Thought for the Day – 27 June – Depending Always on Jesus

Thought for the Day – 27 June – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Depending Always on Jesus

“Virtue is difficult and life holds more trials than consolations.
Sometimes, we feel discouraged because virtue seems impossible and we fall so often, in spite of our best resolutions or because, our cross seems too heavy and we feel that we are overburdened.

Where will we find comfort in our sufferings and strength in our weakness?
“Come to me, all you who labour and are burdened and I will give you rest” (Mt 11:28).
Go to Jesus and depend always on Him.

Difficulties will be overcome, the cross will grow lighter, the pain will be less severe, if we rely always on Jesus.
Isaias, the Prophet, placed these words on the lips of God: “I have made you and I will bear-I will carry and I will save” (Is 46:3).
At that time, Jesus had not yet come; He was not yet present among us with His doctrine, with His consoling spirt and with His Divine Eucharist.
Now things are different; we have Emmanuel, God with us!
Why, therefore, do we not allow ourselves to be carried by Him?
It is necessary for us to allow ourselves to be “Carried by the grace of God,” (Bk II, Ch 9) as The Imitation of Christ puts it.

If God is with us, who or what can prevail against us?

We must, as St Francis de Sales writes, lean on the arm of Jesus, as the child leans securely on the arm of it’s mother.
“It matters little,” he adds, “where she walks, on a grassy plain or on a steep path surrounded by precipices.”
She, is his mother and she carries him; that is enough to make him happy and content.
We must trust Jesus in this way, relying always on His support in joy and in sorrow, in moments of trial and in moments of satisfaction, in life and in death.
Let us not be afraid; Jesus is better and stronger than our earthly mother.
If He guides and supports us, we can be sure of Heaven, no matter what happens!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in "Follow Me", MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on VIRTUE, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Thought for the Day – 9 May – The Cardinal Virtues of Mary

Thought for the Day – 9 May – “Mary’s Month” Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Cardinal Virtues of Mary

Let us compare ourselves with Mary and consider how far we have succeeded in acquiring these virtues.
If we are to possess fully, the Cardinal virtue of JUSTICE, we must direct all our thoughts, desires and actions, towards God.

Since everything comes from God, we should offer everything back to Him.
If we fail to do this, we are guilty of injustice towards God.
We take for ourselves, something which belongs to Him.
We must also be just to our neighbour.
It is not enough to be charitable only because there can be no charity, unless, it is founded on justice.
This justice should characterise our thoughts and judgements, as well as our words and actions.

Have we the Virtue of PRUDENCE?
Prudence demands constant self-control.
How often do we lose control over ourselves and say things which we ought not to say, or do things, which we ought not to do?

Prudence is a splendid virtue, which can be obtained by the grace of God, by living a life of union with Him.
It necessitates constant vigilance over our faculties and passions, in order to ensure, that nothing will interfere with our rational conduct and with our observance of the commandments of God.

Interior TEMPERANCE, is simply the result of prudence, insofar, as it obliges us to master ourselves and to abstain from everything which could upset the proper order of our faculties, in relation to one another and to God.
If we are inwardly temperate, we shall show external temperance in our words and deeds.
We shall abstain, in other words, from everything suggested by our lower nature, which is contrary to the commandments of God and the precepts of the Church.
This means, we shall observe among other things, the Church’s laws of fasting and abstinence.
We shall keep away from dangerous amusements and from anything else which could be harmful to ourselves or to our neighbour.

Finally, we must imitate the FORTITUDE of Mary.
We must be brave in the face of temptation to sin, in suffering and in all the diffculties of life.
Looking always towards Heaven, our true home, we shall find at last, the peace and happiness, which have no end.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/05/09/thought-for-the-day-9-may-the-cardinal-virtues-of-mary/

Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CHASTITY, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

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

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/05/06/thought-for-the-day-6-may-the-virginal-purity-of-mary

Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on VIRTUE, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Thought for the Day – 9 May – The Cardinal Virtues of Mary

Thought for the Day – 9 May – “Mary’s Month” Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Cardinal Virtues of Mary

“Mary’s soul has been appropriately styled, ‘the Garden of all the Virtues.’
In it, the three theological virtues were wonderfully interwoven with the four cardinal virtues of, justice, prudence, temperance and fortitude.

As St John Chrysostom observed, justice is nothing else but the perfect observance of all the commandments. (Homil 12 super Matth).
The Blessed Virgin obeyed all the commandments in her relations with God, to Whom she dedicated herself, from the moment when she gained the use of reason.
She obeyed them in her relations with her Son, Jesus Christ, for she reared and instructed Him with loving maternal care, even though she knew that He was God and had no need of her attention.
She fulfilled them in her relations with men, for whose salvation, she united her sufferings and her merits, to the infinite sufferings ad merits of our Saviour.

Furthermore, Mary was prudence itself.
This virtue shone forth in all her words and in all her actions.
When the Angel appeared in human form and told her that she was to be the Mother of God, she was not flattered nor complacent.
She thought calmly about the mystery which had been announced to her and asked the Angel how it could come to be, since she had already consecrated her virginity to God.
She pronounced her Fiat only when she was reassured by the Angel that through the intervention of the Holy Spirit, she would be a virgin mother.
This was the beginning of the miracle of the Incarnation.
When she was greeted by St Elizabeth as the Mother of the Lord, she did not boast about her distinction but composed a hymn of gratitude, in which she attributed her glory to God alone.
Mary’s prudence, is equally evident in her words of gentle reproof to Jesus after He had been lost and found again, in the company of the Doctors.
It is again obvious at the wedding celebrations in Cana, when she knew well, how to snatch the first miracle from the heart of Jesus.

Mary possessed the virtue of temperance also, both in her external behaviour and in her perfect internal control over all her faculties.
This was the result of her immunity from original sin, which has created such grave moral disorder in our poor human nature.
This virtue, was further perfected, by the purity and holiness of her daily life.

Finally, the virtue of fortitude was Mary’s to an heroic degree.
But her fortitude was always calm and controlled.
The elderly Simeon had foretold that the sword of sorrow would pierce her heart.
Her whole life was interwoven with suffering and privation.
From the manger in Bethlehem, to the flight into Egypt, from the Circumcision, when Jesus first shed His blood, to the Hill of Calvary, where He gave all He had for our salvation.
Mary offered her sufferings along with those of her divine Son for our redemption.
Her fortitude never wavered but was always serene, for her mind and heart were in constant communication with God.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci