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Thoughts of Mary – 31 May – Look to Mary

Thoughts of Mary – 31 May – “Mary’s Month”

In the last General Audience, held by St Pope John in the Vatican Basilica (15 May 1963) before his death. He exhorted us to:

Look to Mary
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

“Is it possible for a Christian not to love the holy Mother of Jesus, whom He has regarded with affection since His childhood, to whom He prayed with the first words He ever uttered and to whom He has trustfully turned for help in the difficult moments of His life?
All find in her and for her, a tender expression of confidence and gentleness – this is a great comfort to us, a great comfort at all times.

In this month of May, good Christians, increase a hundredfold, their tributes of profound veneration for Mary ….

We must cherish in our hearts, a fervour that will strengthen us and enable us, to look to Jesus and to Our Lady with great confidence, so that we may not only await but, hasten the triumph of the Lord’s charity and grace, by our enthusiasm and virtuous living and through our apostolate.
This fervour, must promote brotherly love and induce us to reject all motives for division among us.
We must be impelled, in short, to love all that unites us, because the Lord came to redeem the whole world and He is always continuing His work of salvation, mercy and peace.”

look to mary - st john XXIII 31 may 2020

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Thought for the Day – 31 May – Pray for Us … at the Hour of Our Death

Thought for the Day – 31 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Pray for Us … at the Hour of Our Death

“We have come to the end of this month, which we have dedicated to Mary.
Let us remember, however, that apart from this month of May we should dedicate our whole lives to her, up to final moment of death.
We are always in need of Mary’s patronage and intercession with God.
Let us always have recourse to her, therefore, especially in danger and in suffering but, most especially, at the decisive moment of death, for this is the moment on which eternity depends.
This day will arrive sooner or later but, it will certainly come, “at an hour that you do not expect” (Lk 12:40).

In the second part of the Hail Mary, the Church places on our lips, these words of supplication: “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death, Amen.”
How many times we have recited this prayer!
But do we ever think of death?
Let us remember that a mediation on death is the most valuable lesson in life.
One day, we shall find ourselves face-to-face with God, drawing our last breath on earth.
It may be on a sick bed, it may be in the middle of a street – we do not know.
It may be after a long illness at the end of which we are comforted by the Holy Sacraments and blessed by a priest, or it may be quite unexpected.
But, it is certain that death will come.
Let us aim, therefore, at being always prepared, so that it may not come when we have no good works to offer and when our hearts are full of ourselves and of worldly interests.
Like Mary, let us lead lives of holiness and we shall be sure to die holy deaths.
Let us beseech our heavenly Mother to be by our side at that final moment to sustain us in the conflict and to consign our souls to her divine Son, Jesus. Amen.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

pray for us at the hour of our death - bacci 31 may 2020

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Thoughts of Mary – 30 May – The Bible of the Poor

Thoughts of Mary – 30 May – “Mary’s Month”

The Bible of the Poor
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

“When our forefathers built their churches, they adorned them with sacred imagery, paintings or stained glass illustrating the mysteries of the life of Jesus and Mary.
It was like having a Gospel open for everyone to read, easily understood by all and rightly called, “the Bible of the Poor.”

This is just what the Rosary of Mary has been to us for seven hundred years, a joy to our eyes and hearts in the contemplation, in so many images, of the chief episodes in the life and mission of Jesus and of Mary – of Jesus, the Son of God, our Redeemer, of Mary, the Mother of Jesus and our Mother too.
It is a prayer that rises from our lips and our innermost hearts, begging for the divine gifts that may satisfy the needs of individuals and of the whole Church.

What a great and mysterious thing is human life too, Christian life! a sequence and interwoven pattern of it’s own joys, sorrows and triumphs.
Is this not so, my brothers?
And so, in the Rosary, we combine the little bibles of our lives with the Great and True Mysteries of the bible of the lives of our souls! Amen.”

the rosary the bible of the poor - st john XXIII 30 may 2020

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Thought for the Day – 30 May – The Ascension of Jesus

Thought for the Day – 30 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Ascension of Jesus

“When we meditate on the Ascension, we should humbly ask God, to give us the grace, to strip ourselves of our sins and defects.
Then we shall be able to fly towards Him with love and hope in this life and, when our soul has been set free from the body which imprisons it on earth, we shall be able to set out on our last joyful flight into His presence.
These are the reflections which should be in our minds around the feast of the Ascension.
These are the desires which we should foster and the resolutions which we should form.
Let us ask Our Lord, to bless them.

O Mary, my most holy Mother, implore your divine Son Jesus, now ascended into Heaven, that I may be more detached from the useless and passing goods of this earth.
Ask Him to purify my soul from every stain of sin and to strengthen my will, in it’s good resolutions.
Ask Him that my heart may rise nearer to God and to you, through it’s desire for perfection.
Amen.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

o mary most holy mother - the ascension of jesus - bacci 30 may 2020

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Our Morning Offering – 30 May – O Lady, I Call upon You By St Bernard

Our Morning Offering – 30 May – “Mary’s Month” – Saturday of the Seventh Week of Easter

O Lady, I Call upon You
By St Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153) Mellifluous Doctor

Run, hasten, O Lady,
and in your mercy help your sinful servant,
who calls upon you,
and deliver him from the hands of the enemy.
Who will not sigh to you?
We sigh with love and grief,
for we are oppressed on every side.
How can we do otherwise than sigh to you,
O solace of the miserable,
refuge of outcasts,
ransom of captives?
We are certain that when you see our miseries,
your compassion will hasten to relieve us.
O our sovereign Lady and our Advocate,
commend us to your Son.
Grant, O blessed one,
by the grace which you have merited,
that He who through you
was graciously pleased to become a partaker
of our infirmity and misery,
may also, through your intercession,
make us partakers, of His happiness and glory.
Ameno lady i call upon you - st bernard, run hasten o lady - 30 may 2018

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Thoughts of Mary – 20 May – Mary’s Visit to Her Cousin, Elizabeth

Thoughts of Mary – 20 May – “Mary’s Month”

Mary’s Visit to Her Cousin, Elizabeth
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

“What gentleness and charm in this three months’ visit made by Mary to her beloved cousin!
Each of them is about to bear a child but, for the Virgin Mother, this is the most sacred maternity that it is possible to imagine on earth.
Their two souls mingle and respond in a sweet harmony:  “Blessed are you among women” (Lk 1:42), on the one hand and, on the other, “God, my Saviour, has regarded the low estate of his handmaiden, for behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed” (Lk 1:48).

What takes place here, at Ain-Karim on the hill of Hebron, sheds a light, both very human and divine, on the relations that bind Christian families, brought up in the ancient tradition of the Holy Rosary – the Rosary recited every evening at home, in the family circle, the Rosary recited not just in or or a hundred or a thousand families but by every family, by everyone, everywhere in the world, wherever the is one of us “Suffering, fighting and praying” (A Manzoni, La Pentecost v 6) someone who has answered a call to the Priesthood or to Missionary service or to a dream which will turn out to be an apostolate, or wherever men are constrained by those legitimate, if obligatory demands of labour or trade, military service, study, teaching or any other occupation.

There is a beautiful reunion, during the ten Hail Marys of the Mystery, of so many countless souls, linked together by blood or by domestic ties, in a relationship which hallows and, thereby strengthens, the love that binds our dearest ones together – parents and children, brothers and relations, people from the same locality, people of the same race.
All this, with the purpose and intention of sustaining, increasing and irradiating that universal charity, the exercise of which, is the most profound joy and supreme honour, of our lives.”

What gentleness and charm - st john XXIII mary's visit to Elizabeth

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Thought for the Day – 29 May – The Great Exile

Thought for the Day – 29 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Great Exile

“Let us turn away from this spectacle of a corrupt and corrupting world and raise our fearful gaze towards Mary.
What a contrast!
She was wholly pure and beautiful.
Her mind was always in contact with God.
Her heart was full of the love of God and of her neighbour, whose redemption from the slavery of sin, she ardently desired to achieve by co-operating with her divine Son.
All her desires and actions were in harmony with the will of God, so that she lived completely in God.
Let us think about ourselves.
What place has Jesus in our approach to life?
Let us try and think of Him more often.
Let us meditate on the eternal truths, on the commandments of God and on the precepts of the Church which He has founded.
Let us endeavour to make all our actions conform with these commandments.
Above all, let us seek to love God more and more and, let us pray constantly, for those countless souls who ignore and reject Him.
Then we shall be content in the midst of the trials of this world, for we shall have God in our hearts.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

all her desires and actions - bacci - the great exile 29 may 2020

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Our Morning Offering – 29 May – Look Down Most Blessed Virgin Mother By St Pope Paul VI

Our Morning Offering – 29 May – “Mary’s Month” – Friday of the Seventh Week of Easter and the Memorial of St Pope Paul VI (1897-1978)

Look Down Most Blessed Virgin Mother
By St Pope Paul VI (1897-1978)

Look down with maternal clemency,
most Blessed Virgin, upon all your children.
Consider the anxiety of Bishops
who fear that their flocks
will be tormented by a terrible storm of evils.
Heed the anguish of so many people,
fathers and mothers of families
who are uncertain about their future
and beset by hardships and cares.
Soothe the minds of those at war
and inspire them with “thoughts of peace.”
Through your intercession,
may God, the avenger of injuries, turn to mercy.
May He give back to nations
the tranquillity they seek
and bring them to a lasting age of genuine peace and joy.
Amenlook down most blessed virgin mother - st pope paul VI - 29 may 2020 his memorial

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Thoughts of Mary – 28 May – The Assumption of Mary into Heaven

Thoughts of Mary – 28 May – “Mary’s Month”

The Assumption of Mary into Heaven
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

the mystery of the assumption St John XXIII 28 may 2020

“The queenly figure of Mary is illuminated and glorified in the highest dignity which a creature may attain.
What grace, sweetness and solemnity in the scene of Mary’s “falling asleep,” as the Christians of the East imagine it!
She is lying in the serene sleep of death, Jesus stands beside her and clasps her soul, as if it were a tiny child, to His Heart, to indicate the miracle of her immediate resurrection and glorification.

The Christians of the West, raising their eyes and hearts to heaven, choose to portray Mary borne body and soul to the eternal Kingdom.
The greatest artist saw her thus, incomparable in her divine beauty.
Oh let us too go with her, borne aloft by her escort of angels!
This is the source of consolation and faith, in days of grief or pain, for those privileged souls – such as we can all become, if only we respond to grace – whom God is silently preparing for the most beautiful victory of all, the attainment of holiness.

The mystery of the Assumption, brings home to us the thought of death, of our own death and gives us a sense of serene confidence;  it makes us understand and welcome the thought, that the Lord will be, as we wish Him to be, near us in our last agony, to gather into His own Hands, our immortal soul.

“May your grace be always with us, Immaculate Virgin.”

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Thought for the Day – 28 May – Living the Gospel

Thought for the Day – 28 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Living the Gospel

“The doctrine of the Gospel is so sublime that no generation has yet been able to practice it fully.
Only the Blessed Virgin and the Saints have approached the peak of perfection indicated by Christ.
“You are to be perfect, even as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Mt 5:48).
How far have we advanced?
We are not expected, obviously, to achieve the absolute perfection of our heavenly Father.
But, we are obliged to strive towards it with the help of the grace of God.
It maybe that our particular circumstances excuse us from fulfilling the evangelical counsels but, we have no option but to obey the precepts of the Gospel.
We are under no obligation to sell all our possessions and give the money to the poor but, it is too bad for us if our hearts are not detached from earthly things and in contact with God.
We must be prepared to face the consequences, if we do not observe the precepts of justice and charity towards God and our neighbour.
We are especially obliged to help those who are in need of any kind, with whatever we have to spare in the way of material assistance or advice.
It is our own misfortune, too, if we do not mortify ourselves, accept the will of God, even in suffering and, empty our hearts of worldly attachments, in order to fill them with spiritual preoccupations.
Let us remember, that we belong to God!
All our thoughts and desires should, therefore, be directed towards God alone!

Most Holy Mary, you sought always to reflect in your own soul, the beauty and sanctity of your divine Son, by obeying His teaching in a heroic manner.
Obtain for me, the grace, to be detached from worldly affairs, especially from sin.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

you are to be perfect - living the gospel bacci 28 may 2020

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Our Morning Offering – 28 May – Most Holy Virgin, My Consolation By St Germanus

Our Morning Offering – 28 May – “Mary’s Month” – Thursday of the Seventh Week of Easter and The Memorial of St Germanus (c 490-576)

Most Holy Virgin, My Consolation
By St Germanus (c 490-576)

Most Holy Virgin!
Who are the greatest consolation
that I receive from God,
you who art the heavenly dew
which assuages all my pains,
you who are the light of my soul
when it is enveloped in darkness,
you who are my guide in unknown paths,
the support of my weakness,
my treasure in poverty,
my remedy in sickness,
my consolation in trouble,
my refuge in misery,
and the hope of my salvation,
hear my supplications,
have pity on me,
as becomes the Mother of so good a God
and obtain for me a favourable reception
of all my petitions at the throne of mercy.
Amen

most holy virgin my consolation by st germanus 28 may 2020

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Thoughts of Mary – 27 May – The Annunciation

Thoughts of Mary – 27 May – “Mary’s Month”

The Annunciation
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

this is the first shining point of union between heaven and earth - st john XXIII the annunciation 27 may 2020

“This is the first shining point of union between heaven and earth – the first of those events which were to be the greatest of all time.
The Son of God, Word of the Father, “without whom was not anything made that was made” (John 1:3), in the order of creation, in this mystery takes on human nature and becomes a man, in order to save and redeem all men, all mankind.

When Mary Immaculate, the finest and most fragrant flower of all creation, said in answer to the angel’s greeting:  “Behold the handmaid of the Lord” (Luke 1:38), she accepted the honour of divine motherhood, which was, in that moment, realised within her.
And we, born once in our father Adam, formerly the adopted sons of God but fallen from that high estate, are now once more brothers, adopted sons of the Father, restored to His adoption by the redemption which was already begun.
At the foot of the Cross, we shall all be children of Mary, with that same Jesus, whom she has conceived on that day.
From that day onwards, she will be Mother of God (Mater Dei) and our Mother (Mater Nostra) too.

What sublimity, what tender love is this first mystery!

When we reflect on this, we see that our chief and constant duty is, to thank the Lord who deigned to come to save us and for this purpose, made Himself man, our brother man;  He has joined us by becoming the Son of a woman and by making us, at the foot of the Cross, the adopted sons of this woman.   He wanted us, who were the adopted sons of His Heavenly Father, to be the sons of His own Mother.

Let the intention of our prayer, as we contemplate this first picture offered to our thoughts, be, besides a constant feeling of gratitude, a real and sincere effort to acquire humility, purity and ardent love for the Blessed Virgin, who provides the most precious example of all these virtues.”

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Thought for the Day – 27 May – A Lesson from Scripture – God alone

Thought for the Day – 27 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

A Lesson from Scripture
God alone

“Mary lived a life of poverty and suffering, even though, she was close to Jesus, Who could have made her wealthy and happy on this earth by a single act of His will.
But she never asked her divine Son for worldly happiness.
She regarded Jesus, as her only treasure and her happiness consisted in perfect obedience to the will of God.
When she arrived in Bethlehem with her holy Spouse, St Joseph, she could not find room in the inn nor in any of the houses.
This did not matter to her.
She found refuge in a stable and there, she gave birth to Jesus, the only treasure of her life.

When Herod planned to kill the Divine Infant, Mary did not ask for a miracle in order to escape but, undertook a long and difficult journey into exile.
Only once did she ask her Divine Son for a miracle.
Then, it was not for herself but for the newly-married couple at Cana, who had run short of wine.
What is our attitude?
How important are worldly matters to us?
What place has God in our hearts?
Are we chasing after money, pleasure and success?
If we worry a great deal about these things, we shall suffer torment and disillusionment.
The final disillusionment will be the restlessness of our hearts, which can find peace and lasting happiness in God alone.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

a lesson from scripture god alone - bacci 27 may 2020

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Our Morning Offering – 27 May – O Mother and Handmaid of God By St Methodius

Our Morning Offering – 27 May – “Mary’s Month” Wednesday of the Seventh Week of Easter

O Mother and Handmaid of God
By St Methodius (c 815 – 885)
(Brother of St Cyril)

Your name, O Mother of God,
is replete with all graces and Divine blessings.
You have contained Him who cannot be contained,
and nourished Him who nourishes all creatures.
He who fills heaven and earth
and is the Lord of all,
was pleased to be in need of you,
for it was you who clothed Him with that flesh
which He did not have before.
Rejoice, then, O Mother and Handmaid of God!
Rejoice, because you have made Him a debtor
who gives being to all creatures.
We are all debtors to God
but He is a debtor to you.
That is why, O most holy Mother of God,
you possess more goodness
and greater charity, than all the other Saints
and have freer access to God than any of them,
for you are His Mother.
Be mindful of us, we beg you, in our miseries,
for we celebrate your glories
and know how great is your goodness.
Amen

o-mother-and-handmaid-of-god-st-methodius-23-may-2018 and brightened for 27 may 2020

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Thoughts of Mary – 26 May – Mary, Mother and Queen

Thoughts of Mary – 26 May – “Mary’s Month”

Mary, Mother and Queen
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

“We crown you, together with your divine Son, O Mother, we crown you as our Queen and may the golden crown that encircles your brow, glow as a sign of the highest holiness to which a human creature may rise, as an “ornament of honour that surpasses all other dignity and merit in the Church, both militant and triumphant and, finally, as a symbol of your most powerful intercession with your Son, for our needs.   These are the individual needs of everyone of us and of our families…”

The crown is of purest gold, like the hearts of your children who offer it to you:  ” … a crown of gold upon her head.”

We beg you for two special graces – peace of mind and the spirit of peace in our families, in our parishes and in this Diocese, which loves and honour you, peace in our own blessed land and in all her endeavours to achieve the loftiest ideals of human and social life in the light of the Gospel and in faithfulness to the teaching of the apostles, today, yesterday and always, the shining beacon of truth, justice and true Christian brother hood.

Ah, my brothers!   I speak of true Christian brotherhood and, after peace, this is the second grace for which I intend to pray and for which, I ask you all to pray to Jesus …. under the auspices and with the help of the prayers of our newly crowned Queen.”mary our queen and mother - st john XXIII 26 may 2020

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Thought for the Day – 26 May – Solitude

Thought for the Day – 26 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Solitude

“A man who has no love for solitude, does not love God.
It can easily happen that worldly objects dazzle the mind and enchant the heart, so that anyone who is greatly occupied with them, does not see or experience God in any way.
A man who talks a lot with other men, rarely speaks with God.
God’s voice is heard in silence and in solitude and we must listen for it if we wish to have any ease of conversation with Him.
It is fatal to allow ourselves to be deafened by the noise of the world and never to listen for the voice of God, which speaks within us.

Only those who have been called to a higher vocation, can live in a cloister but a little solitude is necessary for everybody from time to time.
It maybe a course in the Spiritual Exercises, or a monthly day of recollection, or a quarter of an hour spent everyday in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament.
In those moments of detachment from the world and of intimacy with God, we can enjoy conditions far above any which can be found on earth.
Such moments can be the beginning of a new life.
The Holy Spirit incites us through the prophet Osee, to find these necessary intervals for silence and prayer:  “I will allure her and will lead her into the wilderness and I will speak to her heart” (Osee 2:14).
Jesus set the standard for us, when He spent forty days alone in the desert, fasting and praying.
Even though the Apostles were engaged in public missionary activity, He was anxious that they should retire from it for a while, in order to refresh themselves spiritually. “Come apart into a desert place,” He said “and rest a while” (Mk 6:31).
St Bernard wrote that silence and peace far away from the noise of the world, helped the soul to meditate on God and on spiritual matters (Epist 73).
“Solitude is Heaven to me,” (Epist 4 ad Rust) said St Jerome.

The Blessed Virgin also took refuge from distraction and loved the solitude of her home in Nazareth, where the Angel first announced to her, that she was to be the Mother of God.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

solitude bacci 26 may 2020

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Our Morning Offering – 26 May – Mary, I Love You By St Philip Neri

Our Morning Offering – 26 May – “Mary’s Month!” – Tuesday of the Seventh Week of Easter and The Memorial of St Philip Neri (1515-1595)

Mary, I Love You
By St Philip Neri (1515-1595)

Mary, I love you.
Mary, make me live in God,
with God and for God.
Draw me after you, holy mother.
O Mary, may your children persevere in loving you.
Mary, Mother of God and Mother of mercy,
pray for me and for the departed.
Mary, holy Mother of God, be our helper.
In every difficulty and distress,
come to our aid, O Mary.
O Queen of Heaven,
lead us to eternal life with God.
Mother of God, remember me,
and help me always to remember you.
O Mary, conceived without sin,
pray for us who have recourse to you.
Pray for us,
O holy Mother of God,
that we may be made worthy
of the promises of Christ.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray to Jesus for me.
Amen

mary i love you by st philip neri 26 may 2020

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Thoughts of Mary – 25 May – Queen of the World

Thoughts of Mary – 25 May – “Mary’s Month”

Queen of the World
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

“An eloquent passage written by St Peter Canisius, as a commentary on the Gospel of St Luke, contains these admirable reflections: “Oh blessed day that saw the humble Handmaid of the Lord raised and borne aloft to such great glory, made Queen of Heaven and Mistress of the world! She could rise no higher than this, being destined to reign in glory by the side of Christ, enthroned in the Kingdom of the blessed.”

…. This is one of the characteristic conceptions of the Christian faith.
When we think of the Mother, we know we are all brothers of the Son;  we know that the Spirit, the divinity of our Brother, passes mysteriously into us and enables us to understand these hidden and wonderful truths, with the help of the sublime and magnificent indications of the sacred liturgy.

We must, therefore, try in every way we can, to foster these feelings in ourselves and make them more profound, ever adding new warmth to our love for Mary.
This helps us to love our Lord Jesus Christ, the beginning, the continuation and the end of all and, also, to love His Gospel and His Church.

Everything must always be placed in the light of this supernatural doctrine and under the protection of the Mother of God, who, having risen to eternal glory, has not withdrawn herself from us and does not lose sight of us.
She is always willing and anxious to listen to our prayers and receive the trustful petitions we offer to her, with profound humility, so that she may present them to her Son.”

she is always willing and anxious to listen to our prayers - st john XXIII - queen of the world 25 may 2020

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Thought for the Day – 25 May – Living in the Presence of God

Thought for the Day – 25 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Living in the Presence of God

“The ability to live always in the presence of God, is the foundation of the spiritual life.
It is an unquestionable fact, that we are always i the presence of God.
“In Him, we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28).
But, we must be aware of this divine presence.
If we really live all the time in the presence of God, we shall be able to avoid sin, practise virtue and enjoy God’s close friendship.
How can we offend God, our Creator, Redeemer and Judge, if we remember that we are being watched by Him?
“If we reflect on the presence of God,” says St Thomas Aquinas, “we shall hardly ever sin” (Opusc 58:2).
“If we keep ourselves always in the presence of God,” writes St John Chrysostom, “we shall think no evil, say no evil and do no evil” (Hom 8 ad Phil 2).

When we are always aware of God’s presence and realise that He is absolute truth, goodness and beauty, we shall be moved to love and imitate Him.
“Walk in my presence and be perfect” (Gen 17:1).
Because God is our only true good, we shall try, by every means in our power, to live close to Him and to offer Him all the thoughts, desires and actions of our day.
The rare moments of formal prayer will not be enough for us then but, we shall long to be in constant communication with God.

When boiling water is moved away from the fire, it gradually loses it’s heat.
It is the same with us, St John Chrysostom remarked, when we move away from our awareness of God.   We must live in His presence all the time and must check ourselves immediately, if we notice that we are slipping away from this ideal.

My dear Mother Mary, you who lived in the intimate presence of God, obtain for me also this great grace, so that I may avoid sin, do good and love God upon earth, in the hope of enjoying Him forever in Heaven.  Amen.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

my dear mother mary - living in the presence of god - bacci - 25 may 2020

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Our Morning Offering – 25 May – Salve Regina by Bl Herman the Cripple (1013–1054)

Our Morning Offering – 25 May – “Mary’s Month” – Monday of the Seventh week of Easter

Salve Regina
Hail Holy Queen
By Blessed Herman the Cripple (1013–1054)
His Memorial is on 25 September

Hail, holy Queen, Mother of Mercy
Hail our life, our sweetness and our hope.
To thee do we cry,
Poor banished children of Eve,
To thee do we send up our sighs,
Mourning and weeping in this vale of tears.
Turn then, most gracious advocate,
Thine eyes of mercy toward us
And after this our exile,
Show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus

This line by St Bernard (1090-1153) Doctor of the Church
O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.

℣ Pray for us, O holy Mother of God,
℟ that we may be made worthy
of the promises of Christ.
Amen

salve regina hail holy queen - by bl herman the cripple 25 sept 2019

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Thoughts of Mary – 24 May – The Light Comes from the Altar

Thoughts of Mary – 24 May – “Mary’s Month”

The Light Comes from the Altar
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

“When He ascended into Heaven, the majestic flow of the Blood of Jesus did not cease on this earth;  it still flows in a ever-widening stream through untold centuries of grace – the vision which began with the Immaculate Conception, ends in the Blessed Sacrament!

In this way, one mystery corresponds to the other, the one illuminates, completes and confirms the other.
From the Eucharist, back to the Passion, from the Passion to the public life and, further back, to the hidden life of Jesus in Nazareth, from this hidden life to His Birth – from far beyond the Annunciation to the heights of the [Immaculate] Conception and back to us again – it is a continual rising re-descending, unutterable, divine.
Because of this, we see Mary Immaculate present at every Mass and in every Communion.
The light of the Immaculate which streams upon us comes from the Altar, from the Tabernacle and, in the same way, when we draw near to the Altar and the Tabernacle, it is almost as if we hear Mary’s voice inviting us:  “Eat, O friends and drink, drink deeply, O lovers” (Song 5:1).

This, my brothers, is the doctrine.
On this foundation is built the reality, the great and thrilling reality which re-assumes so fully, in all ages, the best Christian piety of the whole world.

In fact, when persecution rages, the Christians draw strength to resist and to extend their conquering apostolate and, if need be, even to die, from the Bread of the strong, from the inebriating Chalice offered over the tombs of martyrs in our ancient cemeteries, under the kind eyes of Mary, whose roughly drawn images smiles among the symbols and ornaments of primitive Christian art.”from the eucharist back to the passion - the light comes from the altar st john XXIII 24 may 2020

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Thought for the Day – 24 May – The Recollection of Mary

Thought for the Day – 24 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Recollection of Mary

“It is believed that when the Angel Gabriel visited the Blessed Virgin in order to tell her that she was to be the Mother of God, she was in a quiet corner of her home, absorbed in prayer.
She had no love for the noise and confusion of the world but preferred to be recollected in the company of God.
This was to be the pattern of her whole life.
In the midst of her domestic duties, on her journey to St Elizabeth and on her travels in Galilee and Judea, in the wake of her divine Son, her mind and heart were always concentrated on God.

Interior recollection is a wonderful thing.
It helps us to hear God’s voice more clearly.
It keeps us removed from the temptations of the world and assists us in sanctifying every moment of our lives.

“The cell continually dwelt in growth sweet,” (Bk 1, C 20:5) says The Imitation of Christ and goes onto ask:  “What can thou see elsewhere that thou does not see here?   Behold the heavens and the earth and all the elements, for out of these are all things made” (Ibid C 20:8).
“As often as I have been amongst men,” it exclaims, “I have returned less a man” (Ibid C 20:2).
When we move around chattering with different people, we have lost something of ourselves by the time we return home.
Perhaps we have wasted a good deal of time in useless conversation or, worse still, have seen or heard unpleasant or disturbing things.
When we go about in the world, we do not often see much that is edifying or instructive and rarely meet people whose conversation does us good.
For this reason, even when we cannot remain apart, we should carry in ourselves, as Mary did, a spirit of interior recollection and communication with God.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

the recollection of mary - bacci 24 may 2020

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One Minute Reflection – 24 May – With Jesus, to the Father

One Minute Reflection – 24 May – “Mary’s Month” – The Seventh Sunday of Easter, Readings: Acts 1:12-14, 1 Peter 4:13-16, Psalm 27(26):1.4.7-8a, John 17:1-11 and the Feast of Our Lady, Help of Christians

“Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.” … John 17:11

REFLECTION – “In this seeking after God, the principle of our holiness, we cannot find a better model than Christ Jesus Himself.   But, you will at once say, how is this?   Can Christ be our model?   How could He “seek God” since He was God Himself?   It is true that Jesus is God, true God come forth from God, Light arising from the uncreated Light, Son of the living God, equal to the Father (cf. Creed of the Mass).   But, He is likewise man, He is authentically one of us through His human nature. …   And we see Christ Jesus, like a giant, rejoice to run the way in the pursuit of the glory of His Father.   This is His primal disposition.

Let us hear how, in the Gospel, He clearly tells us so:  “I seek not my own will but the will of him who sent me” (Jn 5:30).   To the Jews, He proves that He comes from God, that His doctrine is divine, because He seeks the glory of Him that sent Him (cf. Jn 7:18).   He seeks it to such a degree, that He has no solicitude for His own (cf. Jn 8:50).   He has ever these words upon His lips: “My Father,” His whole life is but the magnificent echo of this cry:  “Abba, Father!”   All for Him is summed up in seeking the will and the glory of His Father.   And what constancy in this search!   He Himself declares to us that He never deviated from it:   “I do always the things that please [my Father]” (cf. Jn 8:29).   At the supreme hour of His last farewell, at the moment when about to deliver Himself up to death, He tells us, that all the mission He had received from His Father was accomplished (cf. Jn 17:4). …

If, as God, Jesus is the term of our seeking, as Man, He is the unique Exemplar, wherefrom we ought never to turn our gaze.” … Bl Columba Marmion (1858-1923) Abbot – To seek God (Christ, the Ideal of the Monk)

john 17 11 holy father, keep them in your name - if as god jesus is the term of our seeking, as man he is the unique Exemplar - bl columba marmion 24 may 2020

PRAYER – Since it is from You, God our Father, that redemption comes to us, Your adopted children, look with favour on the family You love, grant us to seek You and to to find You in Your Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.,, May our whole being become a copy of Your Son’s obedience and thus follow Him to You in our eternal heritage.   We entreat Our Lady, Queen of Heaven and Help of Christians to offer her prayers to You to strengthen us in our trials.   Through Christ, Our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God for all eternity, amen.

our lady help of christians pray for us 24 may 2020

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Thoughts of Mary – 23 May – Our Striving After Perfection With Our Mother’s Help

Thoughts of Mary – 23 May – “Mary’s Month”

Our Striving After Perfection With Our Mother’s Help
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

“To have a special devotion to Mary, means, that we are trying to perfect our own spiritual lives, in imitation of our heavenly Mother and with the help of her grace.
In this effort, which we must all make, we must strive to obtain purity and be constant in our search for what is best and in our endeavour to improve our conduct.
We must find the sure and decisive way of attaining the bright goal of our desires, with the sure hope of finally sharing, with Mary, in the joy of Jesus Christ, the fountain of eternal life.

We turn to you, O Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus and our Mother too.
How could we, with trembling hearts, concern ourselves with the greatest problem of all, that of life and death, now overshadowing all mankind, without trusting ourselves to your intercession to preserve us from all dangers?

This is your hour, O Mary, Our Blessed Jesus entrusted us to you in the final hour of His bloody Sacrifice.
We are sure that you will intervene.

And now, indeed, we beseech you for peace, O most sweet Mother and Queen of the world.
The world does not need victorious wars or defeated peoples but renewed and strengthened health of mind and peace, which brings prosperity and tranquillity;  this is what it needs and what it is crying out for – the beginning of salvation and lasting peace. Amen, Amen.”we turn to you o blessed virgin mary - st john XXIII 23 may 2020

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Thought for the Day – 23 May – Mary, Queen of Heaven and Earth

Thought for the Day – 23 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Mary, Queen of Heaven and Earth

“Towards the close of his life, St Paul wrote to his well-beloved disciple, St Timothy:  “As for me, I am already being poured out in sacrifice and the time of my deliverance is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith.   For the rest, there is laid up for me a crown of justice, which the Lord, the just judge, will give to me in that day;  yet, not to me only but, also to those who love his coming” (2 Tim 4:6-8).

After all his apostolic labours and difficulties and, after a lifetime of boundless love, St Paul could confidently say, that he would receive the crown which he had earned.
When the Blessed Virgin came to the end of her earthly pilgrimage, during which she had lovingly worked and suffered so much for Jesus, she could have expected, with even greater certainty, to receive the crown of glory, which she had merited.
She was the noblest and holiest of creatures, because, she was the Mother of the eternal Word of God made man.
Therefore, her reward had to be greater than that of any other creature.
She was the Mother of the King of Angels and of Saints, of Heaven and earth.
As such, it was her place to rule over them all.
Seated at the right hand of her divine Son, she has glory and power, which none other could possess.
The Church, therefore, invokes her under the title of Queen of Angels and of Saints, Queen of Apostles, Queen of Virgins, of Confessors and of Martyrs, Queen of Heaven and of earth.
When our Holy Father, Pius XII, solemnly proclaimed her Queenship, in the year 1954, he was only giving voice to the general consensus of tradition, of the Liturgy and of the belief of all the faithful (Cf Encyclical, Ad Coeli Reginum, 11 Oct 1954).

It should be very encouraging to all of us to know that we have so powerful a Queen in Heaven, whose privilege it is, to dispense God’s graces.
She has crushed the poisonous head of Satan.
Now, she is able and eager to help us, her loyal sons and servants, to resist temptation, to frustrate the schemes of our deadly enemy and to perfect ourselves in virtue. Amen.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

mary queen of heaven and earth -bacci 23 may 2020

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Our Morning Offering – 23 May – Mother of my God and my Lady Mary – St Alphonsus

Our Morning Offering – 23 May – “Mary’s Month” – Saturday of the Sixth Week of Easter

Mother of my God and my Lady Mary
By St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787)
Most Zealous Doctor

Mother of my God and my Lady Mary,
as a beggar, all wounded and sore,
presents himself before a great Queen,
so do I present myself before you,
who are Queen of heaven and earth.
From the lofty throne on which you sit,
disdain not, I implore you,
to cast your eyes on me, a poor sinner.
God has made you so rich
that you might assist the poor
and has made you Queen of Mercy
in order that you might relieve the miserable.
Behold me then and pity me,
behold me and abandon me not,
until you see me changed
from a sinner into a saint.
Amen

mother of my god and my lady mary - st alphonsus - 19 may 2018 REDONE FOR 23 MAY 2020

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Thoughts of Mary – 22 May – Our Love For Mary

Thoughts of Mary – 22 May – “Mary’s Month”

Our Love For Mary
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

All the world knows the Gospel story of the Lord’s last testament in which, at the supreme moment of death, He left His mother to the world, as the universal Mother of all who believe in Him, follow His commandments and form His Church, one, holy, Catholic and apostolic.
He, John, who is the witness and heir of this testament, takes care to add, that from that moment “the disciple took her to his own home” (John 19:26-27).

This welcoming of the Mother of Jesus as our Mother, is characteristic of the moving and glorious history of the Church’s continual devotion to Mary.
Ever Altar, every Chapel, every Church built in honour of the Mother of God, anywhere in the world, testifies to the historic fidelity of the Church’s children to the example of the beloved disciple.

Holy Immaculate Mary,
help of all who are in trouble.
Give courage to the faint-hearted,
console the sad,
heal the infirm,
pray for the people,
intercede for the clergy,
have a special care for nuns.
May all feel,
all enjoy your kind
and powerful assistance,
all who now and always,
render and will render you honour
and will offer you their petitions …
Hear all our prayers, O Mother
and grant them all.
We are all your children –
‘Grant the prayers of your children.’
Amen forever and ever!

holy immaculate mary - our love for may st john XXIII 22 may 2020

Posted in Hail MARY!, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI

Thought for the Day – 22 May – Prayer to Mary, Our Mother

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

Prayer to Mary, Our Mother

“There is a story told of a devout man who was wavering before the onslaught of temptation and was accustomed to kneel before a statue of Our Lady and say this simple prayer:  “Show yourself a mother to me.”
When the same man had fallen into sin and, although full of remorse, had not succeeded in reforming, he went one day to Mary’s Altar and pitifully repeated his usual prayer.
Immediately, he heard a gentle voice replying – “Show that you are my son.”

If we wish Our Lady to be a mother to us, we must also show her that we are her children.
Earthly mothers are delighted to think that their offspring take after them.
In the same way, Mary wishes to see, a reflection of her own sanctity in our thoughts, desires and actions.
All this demands sacrifice, of course.
It demands hard work, fervent prayer and constant watchfulness over ourselves.
If we do all that we can and never lose courage, God will not refuse us His help and our good Mother, will not, fail to intercede for us!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

prayer to our lady - bacci 22 may 2020

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Our Morning Offering – 22 May – Alma Redemptoris Mater

Our Morning Offering – 22 May – “Mary’s Month” – Friday of the Sixth Week of Easter

Alma Redemptoris Mater
Loving Mother of the Redeemer
Prayers of the Church from the Breviary

Loving Mother of the Redeemer,
gate of heaven, star of the sea,
assist your people who have fallen,
yet strive to rise again.
To the wonderment of nature
you bore your Creator,
Yet remained a virgin after as before.
You who received Gabriel’s joyful greeting,
have pity on us poor sinners.

Alma Redemptoris Mater,
quae pervia caeli porta manes,
et stella maris, succurre cadenti,
surgere qui curat, populo:
tu quae genuisti, natura mirante,
tuum sanctum Genitorem,
Virgo prius ac posterius,
Gabrielis ab ore,
sumens illud Ave, peccatorum miserere.

This is one of four Marian antiphons, with following versicles and prayers, traditionally said or sung after night prayer, immediately before going to sleep.   It is said from the beginning of Advent (from night before the fourth Sunday before Christmas) through 1 February.alma redemptoris mater - 22 may 2020

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Thoughts of Mary – 21 May – The Source of Comfort

Thoughts of Mary – 21 May – “Mary’s Month”

The Source of Comfort
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

Motives for melancholy are never in short supply – and when were they ever lacking in the history of the world? – because of the inexorable alternation in human life of sadness and joy.
Sometimes, these mix and merge together and when that happens, we would try in vain to separate them.

A wise man, a wise Christian, must do all he can to free himself from sad thoughts and, at all times, have recourse to those sources of comfort, which transform suffering into motives of love, of merit, of present and eternal joy.

The Mother of Jesus, who is our Mother too – oh how I love to associate these two titles! – is one of the richest sources of our consolation, the richest after Jesus, who is, of His very nature, Light and Life! – she, is rich in comfort and joy and encouragement, for all the children of Eve, who have become her own children through the redemptive sacrifice and will of Christ.

This explains, the whole world’s devotion to the Virgin, whom her saintly cousin, Elizabeth, truly hailed as “Blessed,” in reply to Mary’s confession of humility in the Magnificat, which remains the everlasting canticle of mankind redeemed, the song of the past, present ad future.the mother of jesus - source of consolation - st john XXIII 21 may 2020