Posted in "Follow Me", ACT of CONTRITION, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on THE WORLD, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 9 May – “You are my friends if you do what I command you. “ – John 15:14

Quote/s of the Day – 9 May – Sixth Sunday of Easter, Readings: First: Acts 10: 25-26, 34-35, 44-48; Psalm: Psalms 98: 1, 2-3, 3-4 (2b); Second: First John 4: 7-10; Gospel: John 15: 9-17

“You are my friends if you do what I command you. “

John 15:14

“It is not that we keep His commandments first
and that then He loves
but, that He loves us
and then we keep His commandments.
This is that grace
which is revealed to the humble
but hidden from the proud.”

“If we live good lives, the times are also good.
As we are, such are the times.”

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

“We must note, therefore,
that he that does things pleasing to God,
serves Christ but he that follows his own wishes,
is a follower, rather of himself and not of God.”

St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444)
Father and Doctor of the Incarnation

PRAYER – O Infinite Goodness – Act of Contrition
By St Robert Bellarmine (1542-1621) – Doctor of the Church

O my God,
I am exceedingly grieved,
for having offended Thee
and with my whole heart,
I repent of the sins I have committed.
I hate and abhor them above every other evil,
not only because, by so sinning,
I have lost heaven and deserved hell
but still more because I have offended Thee,
O infinite Goodness,
who art worthy to be loved above all things.
I most firmly resolve,
by the assistance of Thy grace,
never more to offend Thee for the time to come
and to avoid those occasions
which might lead me into sin.
Amen

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH

Our Morning Offering – 23 April – God Be in My Head

Our Morning Offering – 23 April – Friday of the Third Week of Easter

God Be in My Head
Sarum Book of Hours, 1514

God be in my head
and in my understanding.
God be in my eyes
and in my looking.
God be in my mouth
and in my speaking.
God be in my heart
and in my thinking.
God be at my end
and at my departing.
Amen

The Sarum Rite (or Use of Sarum, also known as the Use of Salisbury) is the Latin liturgical rite developed at Salisbury Cathedral and used from the late eleventh century until the English Reformation.
It is largely identical to the Roman rite but was known for additional responses not in the Roman Rite and for its high ceremony. It also has a wealth of richly worded prayers that have influenced Christian worship ever since.
Saint Osmund (Died 1099) Bishop of Salisbury, is the Bishop who introduced the Sarum Rite – read his life here: https://anastpaul.com/2020/12/04/saint-of-the-day-4-december-saint-osmund-died-1099/
The Cathedral’s liturgy was widely respected during the late Middle Ages and churches throughout the British Isles and parts of northwestern Europe adapted its customs for celebrations of the Eucharist and Liturgy of the Hours.

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, BAPTISM, CONFESSION, CONFIRMATION, HOLY COMMUNION, HOLY ORDERS, HOLY SPIRIT, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on GRATITUDE, QUOTES on HUMAN DIGNITY, QUOTES on MARRIAGE, MARRIED LOVE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on THANKSGIVING, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, QUOTES on VOCATIONS, Sacrament of the SICK, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The KINGDOM of GOD, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD

Thought for the Day – 21 April – The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian

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

The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian

“It is a great dignity to be a Christian.
By Baptism, we become sons of God, heirs to Heaven, temples of the Holy Spirit and members of the Mystical Body of Jesus, which is the Church.
God’s grace raises us to the supernatural order and makes us, as St Paul expresses it, sharers in the divine nature.
By the Sacrament of Confirmation, the Holy Spirit fortifies our faith and gives us the strength to resist the temptations of the devil and to fight like loyal soldiers, for the triumph in ourselves and in others, of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.
The Sacrament of Penance, is our plank of salvation in the shipwreck of sin.

Although, we are all wretched sinners, by this give of the divine mercy, we can recover our lost innocence and return to the grace and friendship of God.
Moreover, in order to prevent us from falling back into sin, Jesus give us Himself in the Blessed Eucharist, which is called, by St Thomas Aquinas, the greatest miracle of His infinite love (Opusculum 56, Officium de festo Corporis Christi, lectures 1-4).

But this is not all.
If it is our vocation for form a family, God consecrates our union at the altar and gives us the graces necessary, to sanctify it, so that it may produce a good Christian family.
If God has called us, on the other hand, to become spiritual fathers of the souls redeemed by His Precious Blood, He raises us to this high dignity, by the Sacrament of Holy Orders.
Finally, when we shall have come to the end of our mortal lives, the Priest will be still by our side, to wash away, by the Sacrament of Extreme Unction, the last traces of sin and to comfort us in our passage to eternity.
The whole life of a Christian, is a chain of favours which accompany him, from the cradle to the grave.
We should be grateful to God for the goodness with which He has treated us and continues to treat us.
We should co-operate generously with His gifts by recognising the lofty honour it is, to be a Christian and by living in accordance with this dignity.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, EUCHARISTIC, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, HOLY COMMUNION, HYMNS, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, PRECIOUS BLOOD PRAYERS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD

Quote/s of the Day – 20 April – ‘What does Jesus Christ do in the Eucharist?’

Quote/s of the Day – 20 April – Tuesday of the Third Week of Easter, Readings: Acts 7:51–8:1, Psalm 31:3-4, 6-8, 17, 21, John 6:30-35

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

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

“What does Jesus Christ do in the Eucharist?

It is God, who, as our Saviour, offers Himself each day for us to His Father’s justice.

If you are in difficulties and sorrows, He will comfort and relieve you.
If you are sick, He will either cure you or give you strength to suffer, so as to merit Heaven.
If the devil, the world and the flesh are making war upon you, He will give you the weapons with which to fight, to resist and to win the victory.
If you are poor, he will enrich you with all sorts of riches for time and for eternity.
Let us open the door of His Sacred and Adorable Heart and be wrapped about for an instant, by the flames of His love and we shall see, what a God who loves us, can do.
O my God, who shall be able to comprehend?”

St Jean Marie Baptiste Vianney (1786-1859)

Sweet Sacrament, We Thee Adore

I see upon the Altar placed
The Victim of the greatest love.
Let all the earth below adore
and join the heavenly choirs above:
Sweet Sacrament, we Thee adore,
Oh! make us love Thee more and more.

Jesus! dear Shepherd of the flock,
that crowds in love, about Thy feet,
Our voices yearn to praise Thee, Lord
and joyfully Thy presence greet:
Sweet Sacrament, we Thee adore,
Oh! make us love Thee more and more.

O Precious Blood of Jesus,
cleanse my soul from every stain!
Most pure Heart of Jesus, purify me!
Most humble Heart of Jesus,
teach me Thy humility!
Sweet Heart of Jesus,
communicate to me Thy gentleness and patience!
Most merciful Heart of Jesus,
have mercy on me!
Most loving Heart of Jesus,
inflame my heart with love of Thee!
Amen

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, HOLY SPIRIT, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, St JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN!, The 3rd Glorious Mystery - DESCENT of the HOLY SPIRIT, The HOLY SPIRIT

Our Morning Offering – 15 April – Nunc, Sancte, nobis Spiritus

Our Morning Offering – 15 April – Thursday of the Second Week of Easter

Nunc, Sancte, nobis Spiritus
By St Ambrose (340-397)
Come, Holy Ghost, Who ever One

Trans St John Henry Newman (1801-1890) Trans 1836

Come, Holy Ghost, Who ever One
Art with the Father and the Son.
Come, Holy Ghost, our souls possess
With Thy full flood of holiness.

In will and deed, by heart and tongue,
With all our powers, Thy praise be sung.
And love light up our mortal frame,
Till others catch the living flame.

Almighty Father, hear our cry
Through Jesus Christ our Lord most high,
Who with the Holy Ghost and Thee
Doth live and reign eternally.

Posted in BAPTISM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, HOLY SPIRIT, The HOLY SPIRIT, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 13 April – ‘… The grace of Him Who has called us.’

One Minute Reflection – 13 April – Tuesday of the Second Week of Easter, Readings: First: Acts 4: 32-37, Psalm: Psalms 93: 1ab, 1cd-2, 5, Gospel: John 3: 7b-15 *Readings below

“Whosoever believeth in him, may not perish but may have life everlasting.” – John 3:15

REFLECTION – “Typology points out what is to be expected, indicating through imitation, what is to happen before it happens. Adam was a type of Him who was to come (Rom 5:14); “the Rock was Christ” (1 Cor 10:4) typologically and, the water from the rock, was a type of the living power of the Word, for He says, “If anyone thirst, let him come to Me and drink.” (Jn 7:37) The manna was a type of the living bread which came down from heaven (Jn 6:41) and the serpent suspended on the pole, was a type of the saving Passion accomplished on the Cross (Nb 21:8f.), since the life of everyone who looked at the serpent was preserved.

Similarly, the history of Israel’s exodus, was recorded to typify those who would be saved through Baptism. The firstborn of the Israelites were saved …) through grace given, to those who were marked with blood. The blood of the lamb is a type of the blood of Christ …

At the time of the exodus, the sea and the cloud led the people from amazement to faith but ,they also typified the grace which was yet to come. “Whoever is wise, let him understand these things” – how the baptism in the sea, which brought about Pharaoh’s demise, typifies the washing, which makes the devil’s tyranny depart. The sea killed the enemy in its waves and Baptism kills the enmity between us and God. The people emerged from the sea unharmed and we come up from the water, as alive from the dead, saved by the grace of Him Who has called us. The cloud is a shadow of the Spirit’s gifts, for He cools the flames of our passions through the mortification of our bodies.” – St Basil the Great (329-379) Bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia, Father, Doctor of the Church – Treatise on the Holy Spirit, 14

PRAYER – True Light of the World, Lord Jesus Christ, as You enlighten all men for their salvation, fill us the grace of the Holy Spirit, that our eyes may be opened and our path visible. May our hearts be filled with the certainty of Your love and grant us the grace to share Your light with all. May Your love in us overcome all things, let there be no limit to our faith, our hope and our endurance. Lead us in Your ways of peace to eternal life by Your Mother’s protecting help. Who live and reign with the Father and Holy Spirit, God forever and ever, amen.

Acts 4: 32-37
32 And the multitude of believers had but one heart and one soul, neither did anyone say that aught of the things which he possessed, was his own but all things were common unto them.
33 And with great power did the apostles give testimony of the resurrection of Jesus Christ our Lord and great grace was in them all.
34 For neither was there anyone needy among them. For as many as were owners of lands or houses, sold them and brought the price of the things they sold 35 and laid it down before the feet of the apostles. And distribution was made to everyone, according as he had need.
36 And Joseph, who, by the apostles, was surnamed Barnabas, (which is, by interpretation, The son of consolation), a Levite, a Cyprian born, 37 having land, sold it and brought the price and laid it at the feet of the apostles.

John 3: 7b-15
7 Wonder not, that I said to thee, you must be born again.
8 The Spirit breatheth where he will and thou hearest his voice but thou knowest not whence he cometh and whither he goeth, so is everyone that is born of the Spirit.
9 Nicodemus answered and said to him: How can these things be done?
10 Jesus answered and said to him: Art thou a master in Israel and knowest not these things?
11 Amen, amen I say to thee, that we speak what we know and we testify what we have seen and you receive not our testimony.
12 If I have spoken to you earthly things,and you believe not; how will you ,believe, if I shall speak to you heavenly things?
13 And no man hath ascended into heaven but he that descended from heaven, the Son of man who is in heaven.
14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of man be lifted up: 15 that whosoever believeth in him, may not perish but may have life everlasting.

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, EASTER, MARIAN Antiphons, MARIAN PRAYERS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH

Our Morning Offering – 11 April – The Regina Coeli

Our Morning Offering – 11 April – The Octave Day of Easter

The Regina Coeli

Queen of heaven, rejoice, alleluia.
For He whom thou did merit to bear, alleluia.
Has risen, as He said, alleluia.
Pray for us to God, alleluia.
Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary, alleluia.
For the Lord has truly risen, alleluia.

Let us pray.
O God, who gave joy to the world
through the resurrection of Thy son,
our Lord Jesus Christ,
grant we beseech Thee,
that through the intercession
of the Virgin Mary,
His mother, we may obtain
the joys of everlasting life.
Through the same Christ our Lord.
Amen

Remember to exchange your Angelus prayer for the Regina Coeli as from Easter Sunday for the next 50 days of Eastertide.
According to Catholic tradition, St Gregory the Great (540-604) heard angels chanting the first three lines one Easter morning in Rome, while following barefoot in a great religious procession of the icon of the Virgin painted by St Luke the Evangelist. He was thereupon inspired to add the fourth line.

Posted in BREVIARY Prayers, CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, HOLY WEEK, HYMNS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, STATIONS of the CROSS, The HOLY CROSS, The SIGN of the CROSS

Our Morning Offering – 29 March – O Cross of Christ

Our Morning Offering – 29 March – Monday of Holy Week

O Cross of Christ
Stanbrook Abbey

O Cross of Christ, immortal tree
On which our Saviour died,
The world is sheltered by your arms
That bore the Crucified.

From bitter death and barren wood
The tree of life is made;
Its branches bear unfailing fruit
And leaves that never fade.

O faithful Cross, you stand unmoved
While ages run their course,
Foundation of the universe,
Creation’s binding force.

Give glory to the risen Christ
And to His Cross give praise,
The sign of God’s unfathomed love,
The hope of all our days.
Amen

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MARIAN Antiphons, MARIAN PRAYERS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The 1st Joyful Mystery - the ANNUNCIATION, The ANNUNCIATION, The INCARNATION

Our Morning Offering – 25 March – The Angelus

Our Morning Offering – 25 March – The Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord

The Angelus

V. The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary.
R. And she conceived of the Holy Spirit.
Hail Mary, full of grace,
The Lord is with Thee;
Blessed art thou among women,
And blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Pray for us sinners,
Now and at the hour of our death. Amen
V. Behold the handmaid of the Lord.
R. Be it done unto me according to thy word.
Hail Mary, etc.
V. And the Word was made Flesh.
R. And dwelt among us.
Hail Mary, etc.
V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
LET US PRAY
Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts, that we to whom the Incarnation of Christ Thy Son was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection. Through the same Christ Our Lord.
Amen

Posted in ACT of CONTRITION, CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 16 March – “Do you want to be healed?” John 5:1-16

One Minute Reflection – 16 March – Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Lent, Readings: Ezekiel 47:1-912Psalms 46:2-35-6,8-9John 5:1-16

“Do you want to be healed?” The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool….” Jesus said to him, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” John 5:6-8

REFLECTION – “We read in the Old Testament that in the times of Noah, since all humankind had been won over by sin, heaven’s floodgates opened and rain poured down for forty days… This was a symbol – it was less about a flood, than about a baptism. For it was indeed a baptism that bore away the misdeeds of the sinners and spared the uprightness of Noah. And so today, just as it was then, our Lord has given Lent to us so that the skies can open for the same number of days to inundate us with the floods of divine mercy. Once washed in the saving waters of baptism, this Sacrament enlightens us and, just as formerly, its waters bear away the evil of our sins and confirm the uprightness of our virtues.

Today’s situation is just the same as in Noah’s time. Baptism is flood to sinners and consecration for the faithful. In Baptism the Lord rescues justice and destroys injustice. We can see this in the example of one and the same man – before he was cleansed by the spiritual commands, the Apostle Paul, was a persecutor and blasphemer (1Tm 1,13). But once he had been bathed with the heavenly rain of Baptism, the blasphemer died, the persecutor died, Saul died. Then the Apostle, the just man, Paul, came to life… Anyone who lives Lent in a religious manner and observes the Lord’s decre,es will see sin die in him and grace come to life… such as these die as sinners and live as righteous persons.” – St Maximus of Turin (?-c 420), Bishop – Sermon for Lent 50

PRAYER – Forgive my sins, O my God, forgive my sins:
the sins of youth, the sins of age, the sins of my soul and the sins of my body,
the sins which, through frailty, I have committed, my deliberate and grievous sins,
the sins I know and the sins I do not know, the sins I have laboured so long to hide from others, that now they are hidden from my own memory.
Let me be absolved from all these iniquities and delivered from the bond of all these evils, by the Life, Passion and Death of my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, DIVINE MERCY, HYMNS, LENT 2021, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, The PASSION

Our Morning Offering – 16 March – God of Mercy and Compassion

Our Morning Offering – 16 March – Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Lent

God of Mercy and Compassion
By Giovanni Battista Pergolesi (1710-1736)
Composer

God of mercy and compassion,
Look with pity upon me,
Father, let me call Thee Father,
‘Tis Thy child returns to Thee.

Refrain:
Jesus, Lord, I ask for mercy.
Let me not implore in vain,
All my sins, I now detest them,
Never will I sin again.

By my sins I have deserved
Death and endless misery,
Hell with all its pains and torments,
And for all eternity.
(Refrain)

By my sins I have abandoned
Right and claim to heav’n above.
Where the saints rejoice forever
In a boundless sea of love.
(Refrain)

See our Saviour, bleeding, dying,
On the cross of Calvary;
To that cross my sins have nail’d Him,
Yet He bleeds and dies for me.
(Refrain)

Giovanni Battista Pergolesi 4 January 1710 – 16 or 17 March 1736 was an Italian Baroque composer, violinist and organist. His best-known works include his Stabat Mater and the opera La serva padrona (The Maid Turned Mistress). His compositions include operas and sacred Masses and music. He died of tuberculosis at the age of 26.

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, CCC, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning offering – 14 March – My Lord and my God

Our Morning offering – 14 March – Laetare Sunday

My Lord and my God
By St Nicholas of Flue (1417-1487)

My Lord and my God,
take from me everything
that distances me from You.
My Lord and my God,
give me everything
that brings me closer to You.
My Lord and my God,
detach me from myself
to give my all to You.
Amen

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, DOCTRINE, DOGMA, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES on UNITY, SAINT of the DAY, The CREED

Quote of the Day – 13 March – St Leander and the Nicene

Quote of the Day – 13 March – Saturday of the Third Week of Lent and The Memorial of St Leander (c 534-c 600)

As we pray the Nicene Creed every Sunday, we might reflect on the fact that, this same prayer is being prayed by every Catholic during Mass, throughout the world.
Saint Leander introduced its recitation as a means of uniting the faithful.
Let’s pray that the recitation, may enhance that unity among Catholics today- each time you pray it, pray in your heart “let them be one.”

The Nicene Creed

I believe in one God,
the Father almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all things visible and invisible.

I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the Only Begotten Son of God,
born of the Father before all ages.
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
consubstantial with the Father,
through Him all things were made.
For us men and for our salvation,
He came down from heaven

and by the Holy Spirit
was incarnate of the Virgin Mary,
and became man.

For our sake He was crucified
under Pontius Pilate,
He suffered death and was buried
and rose again on the third day
in accordance with the Scriptures.
He ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory
to judge the living and the dead
and His kingdom will have no end.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son
is adored and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.

I believe in One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.
I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins
and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead
and the life of the world to come.
Amen

Posted in CHRIST the WORD, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, HOLY SPIRIT, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HOLY SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The 4th Luminous Mystery - The TRANSFIGURATION, The TRANSFIGURATION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 28 February – ‘You see, perfect faith is knowledge of the Son of God … ‘ Mark 9:2-10

One Minute Reflection – 28 February – The Second Sunday of Lent, Readings: Genesis 22:1-2910-1315-18Psalms 116:101516-1718-19Romans 8:31-34Mark 9:2-10

“He was transfigured before them and his clothes became dazzling white” – Mark 9:2-3

REFLECTION – “Three persons were chosen to climb the mountain, two to appear with the Lord … Peter, who received the keys of the Kingdom of heaven, was one of those who climbed up and John, to whom was entrusted the Mother of Jesus and James, who would be the first to be elevated to the Episcopal dignity. Then Moses and Elijah, the Law and the prophets, appeared together with the Word … Let us, too, climb the mountain, let us beg the Word of God to appear to us in His “splendour and beauty,” to “be strong, go forth in majesty and reign” (Ps 45[44]:4). …

For if you do not ascend to the peak of a higher knowledge, Wisdom will not appear to you, understanding of the mysteries will not make itself known. The splendour and beauty to be found in the Word of God will not appear to you but God’s Word will seem like a body “without grace or beauty” (Is 53:2). He will seem to you like a man of suffering, “accustomed to infirmity” (v. 3) and like a word born of man, covered with the veil of the letter and not shining with the power of the Spirit (cf. 2 Cor 3:6-17). …

His clothing takes one appearance at the foot of the mountain, another at the top. It might be said that the garments of the Word are Scripture’s words that, so to speak, clothe the divine thoughts. And just as He appeared to Peter, James and John under another aspect, His garment dazzling white, so the meaning of the divine Scriptures is already explained in your mind’s eye. Thus the divine words become like snow “such as no one on earth could bleach them” …

Then followed a cloud, that hid them under its shadow. This shadow is the divine Spirit, which does not cover over men’s hearts but brings to light, what lies hidden … You see, perfect faith is knowledge of the Son of God, not just for beginners but for the perfect and even for the inhabitants of heaven.” – St Ambrose (340-397) Bishop of Milan, Father and Doctor of the Church – Commentary on Saint Luke’s Gospel, VII9 f.

PRAYER – God our Father, You bid us listen to Your Son, the well-beloved. Nourish our heats on Your Word, purify the eyes of our mind and fill us with joy, at the vision of Your glory. May our Blessed Virgin Mother Mary accompan us and intercede for us as we strive to purify our lives. Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, GOD the FATHER, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, The LORD'S PRAYER, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 23 February– The “Our Father”

Thought for the Day – 23 February– Meditations with (1881-1971)

The “Our Father”

“Our Father, Who art in heaven.”
Heaven is God Himself, Who reveals Himself to the souls of the blessed.
If a man lives in God, his mid and heart are already in Heaven, even though he is still an exile upon this earth.
It is a wonderful experience to lead a bodily existence upon earth, while our minds are with God in Heaven, for, as St Paul says, “our citizenship is in heaven” (Phil 3:20).
As we are aware, God is everywhere, in Heaven and on earth.
When we invoke our Father, Who is in Heaven, however, we manifest our faith in Him and in His generosity, whereby, He reveals Himself in all His glory to the blessed and shows His mercy to us poor exiles, when we come to Him.
In the first words of the Pater Noster, we express, not only our faith but, also our hope of being happy with God for all eternity.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/10/18/thought-for-the-day-18-october-the-our-father/

Posted in EUCHARISTIC, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, PRECIOUS BLOOD PRAYERS, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The PASSION

Our Morning Offering – 21 February – Anima Christi

Our Morning Offering – 21 February – First Sunday of Lent

Anima Christi

Soul of Christ, sanctify me
Body of Christ, save me
Blood of Christ, inebriate me
Water from the side of Christ, wash me
Passion of Christ, strengthen me
Good Jesus, hear me
Within Your wounds, shelter me
from turning away, keep me
From the evil one, protect me
At the hour of my death, call me
Into Your presence lead me
to praise You with all Your saints
Forever and ever,
Amen

For many years the Anima Christi was popularly believed to have been composed by Saint Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556) , as he puts it at the beginning of his Spiritual Exercises and often refers to it. In the first edition of the Spiritual Exercises Ignatius merely mentions it, evidently supposing that the reader would know it. In later editions, it was printed in full. It was by assuming that everything in the book was written by Ignatius that it came to be looked upon as his composition. On this account the prayer is sometimes referred to as the Aspirations of St. Ignatius Loyola and so my image shows St Ignatius at prayer.

However, the prayer actually dates to the early fourteenth century and was possibly written by Pope John XXII but its authorship remains uncertain. It has been found in a number of prayer books printed during the youth of Ignatius and is in manuscripts which were written a hundred years before his birth. The English hymnologist James Mearns found it in a manuscript of the British Museum which dates back to about 1370. In the library of Avignon there is preserved a prayer book of Cardinal Pierre de Luxembourg (died 1387), which contains the prayer in practically the same form as we have it today. It has also been found inscribed on one of the gates of the Alcázar of Seville, which dates back to the time of Pedro the Cruel (1350–1369).

The invocations in the prayer have rich associations with Catholic concepts that relate to the Eucharist (Body and Blood of Christ), Baptism (water) and the Passion of Jesus (Holy Wounds).

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, CONSECRATION Prayers, DOCTORS of the Church, INDULGENCES, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN Saturdays, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning Offering – 20 February –Indulgenced Act of Consecration, Most Holy Mary, By St Francis de Sales

Our Morning Offering – 20 February – Saturday after Ash Wednesday and always a Marian Saturday

Most Holy Mary,
Virgin Mother of God

Act of Consecration
By St Francis de Sales (1567-1622)
Indulgence of 300 days, for each recitation
St Pius X, 17 November 1906

Most Holy Mary,
Virgin Mother of God,
I ………., most unworthy though I am to be thy servant,
yet touched by thy motherly care for me
and longng to serve thee,
do, in the presence of my Guardian Angel
and all the court of heaven,
choose thee this day to be my Queen,
my Advocate and my Mother
and I firmly purpose to serve thee evermore myself
and, to do what I can, that all may
render faithful service to thee.
Therefore, most devoted Mother,
through the Precious Blood thy Son poured out for me,
I beg thee and beseech thee,
deign to take me among thy clients
and receive me as thy servant forever.
Aid me in my every action
and beg for me the grace never,
by word or deed or thought,
to be displeasing in thy sight
and that of thy most holy Son.
Think of me, my dearest Mother
and desert me not at the hour of death.
Amen

Posted in DOMINICAN OP, MARIAN Antiphons, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN Saturdays, MARIAN TITLES, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, YouTube VIDEOS

Our Morning Offering – 13 February – Salve Regina, Hail Holy Queen

Our Morning Offering – 13 February – The Memorial of Blessed Jordan of Saxony OP (1190-1237) and a blessed Marian Saturday

It was Jordan who initiated the custom of singing the Salve Regina in procession each night after Compline, to ask Our Lady’s protection of the brothers against temptations from the devil. This is a custom still practised by Dominicans throughout the world and by our community each night.

Salve Regina
Hail Holy Queen
By Blessed Herman the Cripple of Reichenau
(1013–1054)

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 valley 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, below, by St Bernard of Clairvaux (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.

Let us pray:
Almighty, everlasting God,
who by the co-operation of the Holy Spirit
didst prepare the body and soul
of the glorious Virgin-Mother Mary
to become a dwelling-place fit for Thy Son,
grant that as we rejoice in her commemoration,
so by her fervent intercession,
we may be delivered from present evils
and from everlasting death.
Through the same Christ our Lord.
Amen

Posted in Act of SPIRITUAL COMMUNION, EUCHARISTIC, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, HOLY COMMUNION, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Thought for the Day – 12 February – Spiritual Communion

Thought for the Day – 12 February – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Spiritual Communion

“Jesus, not only desires to come to us but, He desires to remain continually present in us with His love and grace.
“If anyone love me, he will keep my word,” He tells us “and, my Father will love him and we will come to him and make our abode with him” (Jn 14:23).
It is enough for us to love Him and to be ready to keep His commandments.
Such an act of sincere and effective love for Jesus, will cause Him to enter and to remain in our hearts, even after the sacramental species has been consumed.
This is Spiritual Communion, which consists mainly in the yearning for Jesus.
“I have come to cast fire upon the earth and what will I but, that it be kindled” (Lk 12:49).

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One Here:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/06/28/thought-for-the-day-28-june-spiritual-communion/

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, HOLY SPIRIT, Our MORNING Offering, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on ZEAL, REDEMPTORISTS CSSR, The HEART

Our Morning Offering – 12 February – Come O Holy Spirit! By St Alphonsus Liguori

Our Morning Offering – 12 February

Come O Holy Spirit!
By St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787)
Most Zealous Doctor

You made Mary full of grace
and inflamed the hearts of the Apostles
with a holy zeal,
enflame our hearts with Your love.
You are the Spirit of goodness,
give us the courage to confront evil.
You are Fire,
set us ablaze with Your love.
You are Light,
enlighten our minds,
that we may see what is truly important.
You are the Dove,
give us gentleness.
You are a soothing Breeze,
bring calm to the storms that rage within us.
You are the Tongue,
may our lips ever sing God’s praises
You are the Cloud,
shelter us under the shadow of Your protection.
O Holy Spirit, melt the frozen,
warm the chilled
and enkindle in us,
an earnest desire to please You.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen

Posted in CHRIST the WORD, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PSALMS, The WORD

Our Morning Offering – 9 February – Psalm 138:1-14,23-24

Our Morning Offering – 9 February

Psalm 138:1-14,23-24
Douay Rheims

Lord, Thou hast proved me and known me.
Thou hast known my sitting down and my rising up.
Thou hast understood my thoughts afar off,
my path and my line,
thou hast searched out.
And thou hast foreseen all my ways,
for there is no speech in my tongue.
Behold, O Lord, thou hast known all things,
the last and those of old,
Thou hast formed me
and hast laid Thy hand upon me.
Thy knowledge is become wonderful to me,
it is high and I cannot reach to it.
Whither shall I go from Thy spirit?
or whither shall I flee from Thy face?
If I ascend into heaven,
Thou art there,
if I descend into hell, Thou art present.
If I take my wings early in the morning
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
even there also, shall Thy hand lead me
and Thy right hand shall hold me.
And I said: Perhaps darkness shall cover me
and night shall be my light in my pleasures.
But darkness shall not be dark to Thee
and night shall be light as day,
the darkness thereof
and the light thereof, are alike to Thee.
For Thou hast possessed my reins.
Thou hast protected me from my mother’s womb.
I will praise Thee,
for Thou art fearfully magnified,
wonderful are Thy works
and my soul knoweth right well.
Prove me, O God, and know my heart,
examine me and know my paths.
And see if there be in me the way of iniquity
and lead me in the eternal way.
Amen

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS for SEASONS, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY SPIRIT

Our Morning Offering – 4 February – Veni Creator Spiritus By Blessed Rabanus Maurus

Our Morning Offering – 4 February – The Memorial of Blessed Rabanus Maurus (776-856)

Veni Creator Spiritus
The Golden Sequence
By Blessed Rabanus Maurus (776-856)

Come, Creator, Spirit,
come from Your bright heavenly throne,
come take possession of our souls
and make them all Your own.
You who are called the Paraclete,
best gift of God above,
the living spring,
the vital fire,
sweet christ’ning and true love. . . .
O guide our minds with Your best light,
with love our hearts inflame
and with Your strength,
which ne’er decays,
confirm our mortal frame.
Far from us drive our deadly foe,
true peace unto us bring
and through all perils lead us safe,
beneath Your sacred wing.
Through You, may we the Father know,
through You, th’eternal Son
and You, the Spirit of them both,
thrice-blessed Three in One. . . .
Amen!

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY

Quote of the Day – 3 February – THE BLESSING of ST BLAISE

Quote of the Day – 3 February – The Memorial of St Blaise Bishop Martyr (Died c 316)

The Blessing of the Throats is a Sacramental of the Church, ordinarily celebrated today, the Feast day of Saint Blaise.

Saint Blase was, according to various accounts, a Physician before becoming a Bishop. His cult spread throughout the entire Church in the Middle Ages because he miraculously cured a little boy who nearly died due to a fishbone in his throat. From the eighth century he has been invoked on behalf of the sick, especially those afflicted with illnesses of the throat.

If the Blessing is conferred during Mass, the Blessing follows the homily and general intercessions, or, for pastoral reasons, the Prayer of Blessing may take the place of the final Blessing of the Mass. When the Blessing is given outside Mass, it is preceded by a brief celebration of the Word of God. If the Blessing is to be celebrated at Morning Prayer or Evening Prayer, it is given after the Reading and Responsory (and homily) and before the Gospel Canticle.

The Blessing may be given by touching the throat of each person with two candles which have been Blessed yesterday, on the Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin. The candles are held together in the form of a Cross.

THE BLESSING of ST BLAISE

Through the intercession
of Saint Blaise,
Bishop and Martyr,
may God deliver you
from ailments of the throat
and from every other evil.
In the name of the Father
and of the Son
and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen

Posted in "Follow Me", CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, HYMNS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH

Our Morning Offering – 3 February – Lord, for Tomorrow and its Needs

Our Morning Offering – 3 February

Lord, for Tomorrow and its Needs
By Sister Mary Xavier (1877)

Lord, for tomorrow and its needs
I do not pray;
keep me, my God, from stain of sin,
just for today.
Let me both diligently work
and duly pray;
let me be kind in word and deed,
just for today.
Let me no wrong or idle word
unthinking say;
set thou a seal upon my lips,
just for today.
And if today my tide of life
should ebb away,
give me Thy sacraments divine,
sweet Lord, today.
So, for tomorrow and its needs
I do not pray
but keep me, guide me, love me, Lord,
just for today.

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, HYMNS, MARTYRS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, YouTube VIDEOS

Our Morning Offering – 29 January – Be Thou My Vision By St Dallan Forgaill

Our Morning Offering – 29 January – The Memorial of St Dallan Forgaill (c 530- 598) Martyr, Monk, Reformer, Poet

Be Thou My Vision
By St Dallan Forgaill (c 530- 598)

Be Thou my vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art.
Thou my best thought by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Be Thou my wisdom and Thou my true Word;
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord.
Thou my great Father, I Thy true son;
Thou in me dwelling and I with Thee one.

Be Thou my battle-shield, sword for my fight,
Be Thou my dignity, Thou my delight.
Thou my soul’s shelter, Thou my high tower.
Raise Thou me heavenward, O Power of my power.

Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise,
Thou mine inheritance, now and always.
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart,
High King of heaven, my Treasure Thou art.

High King of heaven, my victory won,
May I reach heaven’s joys, O bright heaven’s Son,
Heart of my heart, whatever befall
Still be my vision, O ruler of all.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, EUCHARISTIC, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, HOLY COMMUNION, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, SAINT of the DAY, SPEAKING of ....., The HOLY EUCHARIST, The PASSION

Quote/s of the Day – 28 January – St Thomas speaks on the Holy Eucharist

Quote/s of the Day – 28 January – The Memorial of St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) Doctor of the Church

St Thomas speaks on the Holy Eucharist

“O precious and wonderful banquet
that brings us salvation
and contains all sweetness!”

“O how unspeakable is this Sacrament
which sets our affections ablaze with charity.
… It is the fulfillment of Christ’s Mystical Body.”

“The Eucharist is the Sacrament of Love.
It signifies Love,
It produces love.
The Eucharist is the consummation
of the whole spiritual life.”

“The proper effect of the Eucharist
is the transformation of man into God.”

“As Christ’s Passion does not produce it’s effect
on those who do not hold Him as they should,
so also, those do not attain heaven
through this Sacrament, who receive Him unworthily.
Accordingly, Augustine writes:
“The Sacrament is one thing, it’s virtue another.
Many receive from the altar and, receiving it, are dead.
Eat, therefore, heavenly bread, carry innocence to the altar.”
So it is not surprising, that those who do not keep a pure heart,
fail to gain the effect of the Sacrament.”

Adoro te Devote
Trans. Fr Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ (1844-1889)

Godhead here in hiding, whom I do adore,
Masked by these bare shadows,
shape and nothing more,
See, Lord, at Thy service low lies here a heart
Lost, all lost in wonder at the God Thou art.

Seeing, touching, tasting are in Thee deceived –
How says trusty hearing? that shall be believed,
What God’s Son has told me, take for truth I do,
Truth Himself speaks truly or there’s nothing true.

On the cross Thy godhead made no sign to men,
Here Thy very manhood steals from human ken –
Both are my confession, both are my belief,
And I pray the prayer of the dying thief.

I am not like Thomas, wounds I cannot see,
But can plainly call Thee Lord and God as he,
Let me to a deeper faith daily nearer move,
Daily make me harder hope and dearer love.

O Thou our reminder of Christ crucified,
Living Bread, the life of us for whom He died,
Lend this life to me then – feed and feast my mind,
There be Thou the sweetness man was meant to find.

Bring the tender tale true of the Pelican,
Bathe me, Jesu Lord, in what Thy bosom ran—
Blood whereof a single drop has power to win
All the world forgiveness of its world of sin.

Jesu, whom I look at shrouded here below,
I beseech Thee send me what I thirst for so,
Some day to gaze on Thee face to face in light
And be blest forever with Thy glory’s sight.
Amen

St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS on FAITH

Our Morning Offering – 20 January – Acts of Faith, Hope and Charity

Our Morning Offering – 20 January – Acts of Faith, Hope and Charity

ACT of FAITH

O MY GOD,
I firmly believe
that Thou art one God in Three Divine Persons,
Father, Son and Holy Ghost.
I believe that Thy Divine Son became Man
and died for our sins
and that He will come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe these and all the truths
which the Holy Catholic Church teaches
because Thou hast revealed them,
Who canst neither deceive nor be deceived.
Amen

ACT of HOPE

O MY GOD,
relying on Thy almighty power
and infinite mercy and promises,
I hope to obtain pardon of my sins,
the help of Thy grace
and Life Everlasting,
through the merits of Jesus Christ,
my Lord and Redeemer.
Amen

ACT of CHARITY

O MY GOD,
I love Thee above all things,
with my whole heart and soul
because Thou art all-good
and worthy of all love.
I love my neighbour as myself
for the love of Thee.
I forgive all who have injured me
and ask pardon.
of all whom I have injured.
Amen

Posted in BREVIARY Prayers, CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The HOLY TRINITY

Our Morning Offering – 18 January – Omnipotentia Patris

Our Morning Offering – 18 January – Monday of the Second week in Ordinary Time

Omnipotentia Patris

O Omnipotence of the Father,
help my frailty
and save me from the depths of misery.

O Wisdom of the Son,
direct all my thoughts,
my words and my deeds.

O Love of the Holy Spirit,
be the source of all the actions of my mind,
that they may always be conformed
to God’s good pleasure.
Amen

Posted in ADVENT PRAYERS, ARCHangels and Angels, MARIAN Antiphons, MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN PRAYERS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The ANNUNCIATION, The INCARNATION

Our Morning Offering – 31 December – The Angelus

Our Morning Offering – 31 December – The Seventh Day of the Octave of Christmas

The Angelus

V. The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary.
R. And she conceived of the Holy Spirit.
Hail Mary, full of grace,
The Lord is with Thee;
Blessed art thou among women,
And blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Pray for us sinners,
Now and at the hour of our death. Amen
V. Behold the handmaid of the Lord.
R. Be it done unto me according to thy word.
Hail Mary, etc.
V. And the Word was made Flesh.
R. And dwelt among us.
Hail Mary, etc.
V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
LET US PRAY
Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts, that we to whom the Incarnation of Christ Thy Son was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection. Through the same Christ Our Lord.
Amen

The Angelus (/ˈændʒələs/; Latin for “angel”) is a Catholic devotion commemorating the Incarnation.
As with many Catholic prayers, the name Angelus is derived from its incipit—the first few words of the text: Angelus Domini nuntiavit Mariæ (“The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary”).
The devotion is practised by reciting as versicle and response three Biblical verses narrating the mystery, alternating with the prayer “Hail Mary.”
The Angelus exemplifies a species of prayers called the “prayer of the devotee.”

The devotion is traditionally recited three times daily: 06:00, 12:00 and 18:00.
The Angelus is usually accompanied by the ringing of the Angelus bell, which is a call to prayer and to spread goodwill to everyone. The angel referred to in the prayer is Gabriel, a messenger of God who revealed to the Virgin Mary that she would conceive a child to be born, the Son of God (Luke 1:26–38) so honouring the Incarnation of the Saviour, Redeemer – our Messiah, Jesus the Christ.

The words of the prayer are arranged above for leader and community but, of course, most of us pray the prayer alone 3 times each day, for we are always united with each other in faith.

Posted in "Follow Me", CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MARTYRS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SUFFERING, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 28 December – “The servant is not greater than his lord”

One Minute Reflection – 28 December – The Feast of the Holy Innocents – The Fourth Day of the Christmas Octave, Readings: 1 John 1:5-2:2, Psalm 124:2-5, 7-8, Matthew 2:13-18

When Herod realised that he had been deceived by the magi, he became furious. He ordered the massacre of all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity, two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had ascertained from the magi. – Matthew 2:16

REFLECTION – “The Apostle John said: “Whoever says he abides in Christ, ought to walk even as Christ walked” (1 Jn 2:6). Moreover, the blessed Apostle Paul exhorts and teaches us, saying: “We are God’s children but if children, then heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him that we may also be glorified together” (Rm 8:16f.) … Let us, beloved brethren, imitate righteous Abel, who initiated martyrdom, he being the first to be slain for righteousness’s sake (Gn 4:8) …; let us imitate the three children Ananias, Azarias and Misael, who … overcame the king by the power of faith (Dn 3) … What of the prophets whom the Holy Spirit quickened to a foreknowledge of future events? What of the Apostles whom the Lord chose? Since these righteous men were slain for righteousness’ sake, have they not taught us also to die?

The nativity of Christ at once witnessed the martyrdom of infants, so that they who were two years old and under were slain for His name’s sake. An age, not yet fitted for the battle, appeared fit for the crown. That it might be manifest that they who are slain for Christ’s sake are innocent, innocent infancy was put to death for His name’s sake … How grave is the case of a Christian, if he, a servant, is unwilling to suffer when his Master first suffered! … The Son of God suffered that He might make us sons of God and the son of man will not suffer that he may continue to be a son of God! … The Maker and Lord of the world also warns us, saying: “If the world hates you, remember that it hated me before you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own but because you are not of the world but I have chosen you out of the world … remember the word that I said to you: “The servant is not greater than his lord” (Jn 15:18-20).” – St Cyprian of Carthage (c.200-258) Martyr, Bishop of Carthage, Father of the Church – Letter 55

PRAYER – We praise You, O God, we acclaim You as Lord, the white-robed army of martyrs praise You. (from the Te Deum).