Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, OCTOBER - The HOLY ROSARY, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

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

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

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
“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

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, INCORRUPTIBLES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, The LAST THINGS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 23 October – ‘… Even so, the time is very near for each of us … ‘ St Augustine Luke 12:54-59

One Minute Reflection – 23 October – Friday of the Twenty Ninth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Ephesians 4:1-6Psalms 24:1-23-45-6Luke 12:54-59 and the Memorial of Blessed John Angelo Porro OSM (1451-1505)

“You hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of earth and sky but why do you not know how to interpret the present time?”… Luke 12:56

REFLECTION – “The gospel tells us that some people were rebuked by the Lord because, clever as they were at reading the face of the sky, they could not recognise the time for faith when the kingdom of heaven was at hand. It was the Jews who received this reprimand but it has also come down to us. The Lord Jesus began His preaching of the gospel with the admonition: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Mt 4:17). His forerunner, John the Baptist, began his in the same way: “Repent,” he said, “for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Mt 3:2). Today, for those who will not repent at the approach of the kingdom of heaven, the reproof of the Lord Jesus is the same…
As for when the end of the world will be, that is God’s concern… Even so, the time is very near for each of us, for we are mortal. There are hazards all around us. We should be in less danger from them were we made of glass. What more fragile than a vessel of glass? And yet it can be kept safe and last indefinitely. Of course it is exposed to accidents but it is not liable to old age and the suffering it brings. We, therefore, are the more frail and infirm. In our weakness we are haunted by fears of all the calamities that regularly befall the human race and if no such calamity overtakes us, still, time marches on. We may evade the blows of fortune but shall we evade death? We may escape perils from without but shall we escape what comes from within us? Now, suddenly, we may be attacked by any malady. And if we are spared? Even so, old age comes at last and nothing will delay it.”… St Augustine (354-430) – Father & Doctor of the Church – Sermon 109

PRAYER – Lord God, You fill us with Your grace and teach us true faith. Strengthen in our hearts that faith that no trials may quench the fire, that we may seek Your face in every moment and accept AND LIVE all of Your will. Send us Your Spirit to keep the fire blazing. By the inspiration and prayers of Blessed John Angelo Porro, may we grow in sanctity and may the humble love and intercession of Mary Mother of our faith, be our succour. Through Jesus Your Son our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.

Posted in "Follow Me", ABOUT Antonio Bacci, MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, The 2nd Glorius Mystery - The ASCENSION, The ASCENSION of the LORD

Thought for the Day – 14 October – The Second Glorious Mystery – The Ascension of Jesus into Heaven

Thought for the Day – 14 October – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
The Second Glorious Mystery
The Ascension of Jesus into Heaven

“Forty days after His glorious resurrection, Jesus came, with all His friends, among them His Mother, to the Mount of Olives.
This area had already witnessed the opening phase of His passion, which was all the more poignant, perhaps because in Gethsemane, it was not only His body which was lacerated by scourges and nails but, His soul, which experienced the agonising vision of the sins and ingratitude of the human race.
Now, however, He is here with a glorified body as the Conqueror of sin and of death.
He looks for the last time on His small band of followers, to whom He has entrusted His mission of transforming the entire universe by preaching and putting into practice, the Gospel message, throughout the world.
Now, He promises them the Holy Spirit, Who will give them the power to overcome evil.
Then He is lifted up toward Heaven, until a bright cloud hides Him from their sight.

Perhaps, the Blessed Mother, was the last to take her eyes off the disappearing cloud which had removed Jesus from view.
Her human eyes never saw again the beloved figure of her divine Son but, in her soul, she saw Him entering triumphantly into Heaven among choirs of Angels and sitting at the right hand of the Eternal Father.
She saw and thought with infinite yearnng of the not too distant day, when she would have passed from mortal exile, into the everlasting happiness of Heaven, where she would embrace her divine Son again in an ecstasy of love.

We have all been called to ascend to Heaven with Jesus and Mary.
Let us remember, however, that only the innocent and the repentant can be admitted into Paradise.
If we have been unfortunate enough to have lost our baptismal innocence, only the second way is left to us – the way of penance.
We must purify ourselves of our sins by means of good works.
We must ascend higher and highter, towards the summit of Christian perfection.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SILENCE, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 14 October – Faith, Love, Justice – Luke 11:42

Quote/s of the Day – 14 October – Wednesday of the Twenty-eighth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Galatians 5:18-25, Psalms 1:1-2, 3, 4 and 6, Luke 11:42-46

“But woe to you Pharisees!
For you tithe mint and rue and every herb
and neglect justice and the love of God.”

Luke 11:42

“Christianity is not a matter
of persuading people of particular ideas
but of inviting them to share
in the greatness of Christ.
So pray, that I may never fall into the trap,
of impressing people,
with clever speech but instead,
I may learn, to speak with humility,
desiring only to impress people,
with Christ Himself.”

St Ignatius of Antioch (c 35 – 107)
Father of the Church, Martyr

“Mint and dill and cumin are only spices for food
but are not themselves, substantial food.
What substantive food would mean in conversion,
would be that which is necessary
for the justification of our souls—faith and love—
unlike these legalisms,
which are more like condiments and flavourings.
It is as if, a meal might be thought to consist,
more of condiments and flavourings,
than the food itself.
The seriousness of judgement is neglected,
while great attention is given to minor matters.”

Origen (c 185-253)
Priest, Theologian, Father

“You hide your heart from man –
hide it from God if you can.
… Where will you go?
Where will you flee?
Do you want to hear some advice?
If you want to flee from Him – flee to Him.
Flee to Him by Confessing, not from Him, by hiding,
for you cannot hide but you can Confess.
Tell Him. “You are my refuge” (Ps 32[31]:7)
and let there be nursed in yo,
the love that alone leads to life.”

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

“It is clear, my brethren,
that we live outside ourselves,
we are forgetful of ourselves
whenever we fritter our lives away
in empty pursuits or distractions,
decked out with trifles.
That is why Wisdom
is more concerned to invite us
to the house of repentance
than the house of feasting,
that is to say to call back into himself,
the man outside himself …”

Blessed Isaac of Stella O.Cist (c 1100 – c 1170)
Sermon 2 for All Saints, 13-20

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Quote/s of the Day – 13 October – Our Lady of Fatima

Quote/s of the Day – 13 October – The 103rd Anniversary of the Last Apparition of Our Lady of Fatima

Our Lady of Fátima –or Our Lady of the Rosary,
the name the three children called her –
is a title given to the Blessed Virgin Mary as She appeared in apparitions reported by three shepherd children at Fátima in Portugal.
These Apparitions occurred on the 13th day of six consecutive months in 1917, the first on 13 May and the last today, 13 October 2017.
The three children were Lúcia Santos
and her cousins Jacinta and Francisco Marto.
Her message was one of hope, repentance
and conversion for the whole world.

“I have come, to warn the faithful,
to amend their lives
and ask pardon for their sins.
They must not continue to offend Our Lord,
Who is already too much offended.”

“Look, my Daughter,”
Our Lady said to Lúcia on 10 December 1925,
“at my heart, surrounded with thorns,
with which ungrateful men pierce me.”

“Say the Rosary everyday
to obtain peace for the world.
And after each decade,
say the following prayer:
‘O my Jesus, forgive us our sins,
save us from the fires of Hell,
lead all souls to Heaven,
especially those in most need of Thy mercy.’”

“Pray, pray a great deal
and make sacrifices for sinners,
for many souls go to Hell
because they have no-one
to make sacrifices
and pray for them.”

“In the end,
my Immaculate Heart
will triumph.”

Our Lady assured Lúcia:
“My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge
and the way that will lead you to God.”

Thus, if we devote ourselves to her Immaculate Heart,
Mary will lead us to her Son, Jesus Christ
and we will be on the way to Heaven.

Official Prayer of Consecration
To Our Lady of Fatima

(Issued for the Jubilee in 2017)

Our lady of Fatima Hail,
Mother of the Lord,
Virgin Mary,
Queen of the Rosary of Fatima!
Blessed among all women,
you are the image of the Church dressed in the Paschal light,
you are the honour of our people,
you are the triumph over the mark of evil.
Prophecy of the merciful Love of the Father,
Teacher of the Annunciation of the Good News of the Son,
Sign of the burning Fire of the Holy Spirit,
teach us, in this vale of joys and sorrows,
the eternal truths that the Father reveals to the little ones.
Show us the strength of your mantle of protection.
In your Immaculate Heart,
be the refuge of sinners
and the way that leads to God.
In Faith, Hope and Love,
I surrender myself to you.
Through you, I consecrate myself to God,
O Virgin of the Rosary of Fatima.
And thus surrounded by the Light that comes from your hands,
I will give Glory to the Lord, forever and ever.
Amen

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Thought for the Day – 12 October – The Fifth Sorrowful Mystery – The Crucifixion

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

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
The Fifth Sorrowful Mystery
The Crucifixion

“At last, Jesus reaches Calvary, breathless and reduced to utter exhaustion.
The instrument of torture is taken from Him and laid upon the ground.
Our divine Redeemer suffers acute pain as Her is again stripped of His garments, which have stuck to His wounds.
Now, He is stretched, an innocent victim, on the altar of sacrifice, the Cross.
One of the executioners grasps His hand, pierces it with a large nail and attaches it to the wood.
Then, he does the same with the other hand and with the two feet.
His Mother is close at hand.
She feels in her heart the blows of the hammer which lacerate the living flesh of Jesus.
Jesus remains silent “as a meek lamb that is carried to be a victim” (Jer 11:19).

Now, the executioners raise up the Cross and fix it in the hold already prepared for it.
The shock of this impact sends a shudder of terrible pain through the Victim’s members and entire frame.
Behold Him now, suspended between Heaven and earth, the mediator between God and humanity, the victim of expiation for the innumerable sins of men.

Come near to the Cross and kiss the bloodstained feet.
While the Jews are insulting Him and most of the Apostles have abandoned Him, let us tell Him how we love Him.
Let us tell Him of our sorrow for our sins and of our determination to make amends for our faults and for our ingratitude by living in accordance with His teachings and example.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, FATHERS of the Church, MARTYRS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, ORIGINAL SIN, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on SCANDAL, QUOTES on SIN, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 9 October – ‘Neglecting grace’ – Luke 11:15-26

One Minute Reflection – 9 October – Friday of the Twenty Seventh Week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Galatians 3:7-14Psalms 111:1-23-45-6Luke 11: 15-26 and the Memorial of Saint Denis of Paris (Died c 258) and Companions, the First Bishop of Paris, Martyr

“When an unclean spirit goes out of someone, it roams through arid regions searching for rest but, finding none, it says, ‘I shall return to my home from which I came…” – Luke 11:24

REFLECTION – “The unclean spirit dwelt in us before we believed, before we came to Christ when our soul was still committing fornication against God and was with it’s lovers, the demons.
Afterward it said, “I will return to my first husband” and came to Christ, who “created” it from the beginning “in his image.”
Necessarily, the adulterous spirit gave up his place when it saw the legitimate husband.
Christ received us and our house has been “cleansed” from it’s former sins. It has been “furnished” with the furnishing of the sacraments of the faithful that they who have been initiated know.
This house does not deserve to have Christ as it’s resident immediately, unless it’s life and conduct are so holy, pure and incapable of being defiled, that it deserves to be the “temple of God.”
It should not still be a house but a temple in which God dwells.
If it neglects the grace that was received and entangles itself in secular affairs, immediately, that unclean spirit returns and claims the vacant house for itself.
“It brings with it seven other spirits more wicked,” so that it may not be able again to be expelled “and the last state of that kind of person is worse than the first.”

It would be more tolerable, that the soul would not have returned to it’s first husband once it became a prostitute, than having gone back after confession, to her husband, to have become an adulteress again.
There is no “fellowship,” as the apostle says, “between the temple of God and idols,” no “agreement between Christ and Belial.”Origen of Alexandria (c 185-253) (Homilies on Exodus, 8)

PRAYER – Lord God, You sent St Denis and his companions to proclaim Your glory to the nations and gave them the fortitude to die for Your sake. Help us, by their exmple, to meet with a like indifference, the triumphs and afflictions this world has to offer. We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, one God with You and the Holy Spirit, now and for all eternity, amen.

Posted in ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, The HOLY SPIRIT, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 8 October – ‘… Ask then, unremittingly and without doubting …’ Luke 11:5-13

One Minute Reflection – 8 October – Thursday of the Twenty Seventh week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Galatians 3:1-5, Responsorial Psalm: Luke 1:69-7071-72,73-75Luke 11:5-13

“Which of you who has a friend will go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves… If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit, to those who ask him!” – Luke 11:5,13

REFLECTION – “In one place it is said that the Father “will give good things to those that ask him” (Mt 7:11), elsewhere, that he will “give the Holy Spirit to those that ask him” (Lk 11:13).

From this we learn that those who pray to God with steadfast faith in these promises receive, not only remission of sins but also heavenly gifts of grace. The Lord promised these “good things” not to the righteous but to sinners, saying: “If you, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those that ask him?” (Lk 11:13). Ask then, unremittingly and without doubting, however poor your efforts to gain holiness, however weak your strength, you will receive great gifts, far beyond anything that you deserve. (…)

Struggle to preserve unimpaired the light that shines within your intellect. If passion begins to dominate you when you look at things, this means that the Lord has left you in darkness; He has dropped the reins with which He was guiding you (cf. Jb 30:11) and the light of your eyes is gone from you (cf. Ps 37[38]:10 LXX). Yet even if this happens, do not despair or give up but pray to God with the words of David: “O send out thy light and thy truth” to me in my gloom, “for thou art the salvation of my countenance and my God” (cf. Ps 42[43]:3, 5 LXX).

For “thou shalt send forth thy Spirit and they shall be created and thou shalt renew the face of the earth” (Cf. Ps 103[104]:30 LXX).” – John of Karpathos (Seventh century) Bishop and Monk – One Hundred Texts for the encouragement of the monks in India, nos. 45, 82

PRAYER – Lord God and Father, who entrusted the earth to men and each to the other, grant us the grace this day, to see Your Face in our neighbour and to seek all who need our help. Grant us the grace to work faithfully for Your glory, for the salvation of our souls through the light of faith You have given us. We beg the grace of Your love and mercy and the light of love You send with Your Holy Spirit. May the prayers of Mary our Holy Mother, keep us ever in her guiding care. We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever, amen.

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FRANCISCAN OFM, GOD the FATHER, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 4 October – ‘… What love!’ – Matthew 21:42

One Minute Reflection – 4 October – Twenty Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Readings: Isaiah 5:1-7Psalms 80:91213-1415-1619-20Philippians 4:6-9Matthew 21:33-43 and the Memorial of St Francis of Assisi OFM (c 1181–1226)

“By the Lord has this been done; it is wonderful in our eyes” … Matthew 21:42

REFLECTION “Christ has given us the ministry of reconciliation.” (2 Cor 5:18) Saint Paul thus brings out the greatness of the apostles, by showing us the ministry that was entrusted to them and at the same time, he shows us the love with which God loved us. After people refused to listen to Him who had been sent to them, God did not let His anger burst forth, He did not reject them. He persisted in calling them to Himself through the apostles. Who would not marvel at so much solicitude?

They killed the Son who had come to reconcile them, who was the only Son and of the same nature as the Father. The Father did not turn away from the murderers, He did not say: “I sent them my Son, and they, not satisfied with not having listened to Him, put Him to death and crucified Him. So now, it is only just that I abandon them.” He did the opposite. And after Christ had left earth, it is we, His ministers, who have the responsibility to replace Him. “He has given us the ministry of reconciliation. I mean that God, in Christ, was reconciling the world to himself, not counting men’s transgressions against them.”

What love! going beyond all words and intelligence! Who was it had been insulted? God Himself! And who takes the first step towards reconciliation? He Himself (…) If God had wanted to make us give an account, we would truly be lost since “all died” (2 Cor 5:14). But in spite of our many sins, He did not strike with His vengeance but He even reconciled us to Himself. Not satisfied with taking away our debt, He even considered it to be nothing. In the same way, we have to forgive our enemies if we ourselves want to obtain this generous forgiveness: “He has given us the ministry of reconciliation.”St John Chrysostom (345-407) Father and Doctor – Homily 11 on the Second Letter to the Corinthians, 4-5

PRAYER – All highest, glorious God,
cast Your light into the darkness of our hearts,
give us true faith, firm hope,
perfect charity and profound humility,
so that with wisdom,
courage and perception, O Lord,
we may do what is truly Your holy will.
Amen. By St Francis of Assisi

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONSOLATION, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE

Thought for the Day – 29 September – Frequent Confession and Communion, Part One

Thought for the Day – 29 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Frequent Confession and Communion – Part One

“Among the efficacious means of self-sanctification, are frequent Confession and Holy Communion.
Confession purifies the soul of sin, into which, unfortunately, we continue to fall and confers sacramental grace, through which we are fortified against the assaults of the devil.
It also gives us an opportunity of being guided on the right road by our Confessor, who knows our secret failings and will give us, in God’s name, words of encouragement, comfort and spiritual direction.
We should frequently receive this Sacrament of God’s mercy – in fact, those who are striving after holiness, should go to Confession every week, or, at least every fortnight.
Even if we have not committed grave sin, when we examine ourselves before God, we shall find many faults and failings.
The Holy Spirit reminds us that, even the just man sins seven times a day, which means many times.
“The just man falls seven times” (Prov 24:16).
“If we say that we have no sin” writes St John, “we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us” (1 Jn 1:8).
Since then, we are all poor sinners and Jesus, in His infinite goodness has given us this means of purifying our souls, we should not neglect to use it to remain in the state of grace.
Frequent Confession, is not difficult.
On the contrary, if we have the proper disposition, it can be a great comfort and consolation to us.
There is not greater solace than to possess the grace of God and to be pure and free from all sin.
Furthermore, by remaining in venial sin, we are in danger of drifting gradually into more grievous sin and, into a state of tepidity, which is so dangerous, as well as so displeasing to God.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on ENVY, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on INNOCENCE, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 28 September – ‘… Being like-minded with Him and anxious to walk in His steps.’ – Luke 9:48

One Minute Reflection – 28 September – Monday of the Twenty Sixth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Job 1:6-22Psalms 17:12-36-7Luke 9:46-50 and The Memorial of Blessed Bernardine of Feltre OFM (1439-1494)

“Whoever receives this child in my name receives me and whoever receives me, receives him who sent me, for he who is least among you all, is the one who is great.” … Luke 9:48

REFLECTION – “The passion and lust of pride attacked some of the holy apostles. The mere argument about who of them was the greatest is the mark of an ambitious person, eager to stand at the head of the rest. Christ, who did not sleep, knows how to deliver. He saw this thought in the disciple’s mind, springing up, in the words of Scripture, like some bitter plant. He saw the weeds, the work of the wicked sower. Before it grew up tall, struck its root down deep, grew strong and took possession of the heart, He tears up the evil by the very root. In what way does the Physician of souls amputate pride’s passion? How does He deliver the beloved disciple from being the prey of the enemy and from a thing hateful to God and man? “He took a child,” it says, “and set it by him.” He made the event a means of benefiting both the holy apostles themselves and us their successors. This illness, as a rule, preys upon all those who are in any respect superior to other people.

What kind of type and representation did He make the child He had taken? He made the child a representation of an innocent and humble life. The mind of a child is empty of fraud and his heart is sincere. His thoughts are simple. He does not covet rank and does not know what is meant by one man being higher than another is. Christ brought forward the child as a pattern of simplicity and innocence and set him by Him. He showed him as in an object lesson, that He accepts and loves those who are like the child. He thinks they are worthy of standing at His side, as being like-minded with Him and anxious to walk in His steps.” … St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Father and Doctor of the Church – Commentary on Luke, Homily 54

PRAYER – Lord God, You hold out the Light of Your Word to those who do not know You. Strengthen in our hearts, the faith You have given us and the Credo we profess, so that no trials and pride may quench the fire Your Spirit has kindled in us. May the intercession of Blessed Bernardine of Feltre, grant us the grace of following the way of the Cross, to stand beneath it with our Mother, the Mother of God, Ave Maria! We make our prayer through Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.

Posted in INCORRUPTIBLES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 27 September – ‘… This is the time for each one of us to go out…’ Matthew 21:28

One Minute Reflection – 27 September – Twenty Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Readings: Ezekiel 18:25-28, Psalms 25:4-5, 6-7, 8-9, Philippians 2:1-11, Matthew 21:28-32 and the Memorial of St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)

‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’ … Matthew 21:28

REFLECTION – “My brethren, this is the time for each one of us to go out, for our part, from the place our sin. Let us go out from our Babylon to meet God our Saviour, as the prophet warns us: “Prepare to meet God our Saviour, O Israel, for he comes!” (cf Am 4:12). Let us leave the depth of our sin and consent to set out towards the Lord, who assumed “the likeness of our sinful flesh” (cf Rm 8:3). Let us leave sin’s will and set out to do penance for our sins. Then we shall find Christ – He Himself made expiation for the sin He had certainly not committed. Then He who saves the repentant will grant us salvation: “He shows mercy to those who are converted” (Sir 12:3).

But you are going to say to me (…): “Who is able to depart from sin by himself?” Indeed, it is true, the greatest sin is the love of sin, the desire to sin. Therefore, leave this desire (…), hate sin and see yourself departed from sin. If you hate sin, you have met Christ where He is to be found. To whoever hates sin, (…) Christ forgives their fault while waiting to root out our evil habits.

But you will say that even this is a great deal for you and that, without the grace of God, it is impossible to hate one’s sin and desire justice: “Let them thank the Lord for his mercy, such wondrous deeds for the children of Adam!” (Ps 106[107]:8). (…) O Lord, with a mighty hand, Jesus all-powerful, come to free my captive reason from the demon of ignorance and snatch my sick will, from the plague of it’s lusts. Free my capacities, so that I may act with strength as I desire to do with all my heart.Bl Isaac of Stella O.Cist (c 1100 – c 1170) Cistercian Monk, Abbot, Theologian, Philosopher – Sermon for Lent

PRAYER – Lord God, You hold out the Light of Your Word to those who do not know You. Strengthen in our hearts, the faith You have given us and the Credo we profess, so that no trials may quench the fire Your Spirit has kindled in us. May the intercession of St Vincent de Paul, grant us the grace of following the way of the Cross, to stand beneath it with our Mother, the Mother of God, Ave Maria! We make our prayer through Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on TIME, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The LAST THINGS

Thought for the Day – 25 September – Fundamental Facts

Thought for the Day – 25 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Fundamental Facts

“Life is passing.
The days chase one another; time is flying.
Childhood has become a distant memory.
Perhaps youth and manhood have also passed and gone and we find ourselves on the threshold of old age.
All those days, months and years that have passed were gifts of God.
He gave them to us for our benefit and sanctification.
But what use have we made of them?
Have we laid up treasure for eternal life?
And, if we have not done so up to now, for what are we waiting?
Let us remember the old saying, that we should never put off till tomorrow, what we ca do today.
Today there is still time to turn from sin, regain sanctifying grace and lead a life of Christian perfection.
But tomorrow?
What do we know about tomorrow?
Tomorrow is in the hands of the Lord and we do not know if the Lord will grant us further time to make amends!

Do not say, therefore, that you will change tomorrow, that tomorrow you will turn away from the path of sin and begin to lead a holy life.
For not alone does time pass but, it often betrays us!
Our Lord tells us that the judgement will come at a time when we least expect it.
The time that is gone will never return; the future is uncertain; there remains, only the present.
But the present is equally uncertain; it is something that passes and, every moment could be the last of our lives.
How many whom we have known, were taken away suddenly in the flower of their youth …
Is that not a warning to us?

Let us do good while we have time; let us gain merit now, for eternal life. Amen”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in "Follow Me", DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONSOLATION, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 24 September – “And he sought to see him.” Luke 9:9

Quote/s of the Day – 24 September – Thursday of the Twenty Fifth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Ecclesiastes 1:2-11, Psalms 90:3-4, 5-6, 12-13, 14 and 17, Luke 9:7-9

“… Who is this about whom I hear such things?”
And he sought to see him.”

Luke 9:9

“Come to me, all you who labour
and are burdened and I will give you rest. ”

Matthew 11:28

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

St Pope Clement I (c 35-99)
Apostolic Father, Bishop of Rome and Martyr

“He who calls us, came here below,
to give us the means of getting there.
He chose the wood
that would enable us to cross the sea –
indeed, no-one can cross the ocean of this world,
who is not borne by the Cross of Christ.
Even the blind can cling to this Cross.
If you can’t see where you are going very well,
don’t let go of it, it will guide you by itself. ”

“Do you desire security?
Here you have it.
The Lord says to you, “I will never abandon you,
I will always be with you.”
If a good man made you such a promise,
you would trust him.
God makes it and do you doubt?
Do you seek a support, more sure
than the word of God, which is infallible?
Surely, He has made the promise,
He has written it,
He has pledged His word for it, it is most certain!”

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

“Rest is in Him alone.
Man knows no peace in the world
but he has no disturbance
when he is with God.”

St Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153)
Mellifluous Doctor

“If you learn everything, except Christ, you learn nothing.
If you learn nothing, except Christ, you learn everything.”

St Bonaventure (1221-1274)
Seraphic Doctor of the Church

“Only one thing is necessary:
Jesus Christ!
Think unceasingly of Him. ”

St John Gabriel Perboyre CM (1802-1840)
Martyr for Christ

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One Minute Reflection – 17 September – “Your sins are forgiven.” ~ Luke 7:48

One Minute Reflection – 17 September – Thursday of the Twenty Fourth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 15:1-11Psalms 118:1-216-1728Luke 7:36-50 and the Memorial of St Robert Bellarmine (1542-1621) Doctor of the Church

“Your sins are forgiven. Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” ~ Luke 7:48,50

REFLECTION – “A sinful woman has proclaimed to us that God’s love has gone forth in search of sinners. For when He called her, Christ was inviting our whole race to His love and, in her person, He was drawing all sinners to His forgiveness. He spoke to her alone but He was drawing all creation to His grace. (…)

Who would not be struck by the mercy of Christ, who accepted an invitation to a Pharisee’s house in order to save a sinner! For the sake of the woman who hungered for forgiveness, He, Himself felt hunger for the table of Simon the Pharisee and all the while, under the guise of a meal of bread, He had prepared for the sinner a meal of repentance! (…)

In order that you may have the same experience, reflect within yourself that your sin is great but that it is blasphemy against God and an injury to yourself, to despair of His forgiveness, because your sin seems to you to be too great. He has promised to forgive your sins, however many they are; will you tell Him you cannot believe this and dispute with Him, saying that your sin is too great and He cannot heal your sickness? Stop at that point and cry out with the prophet: “Lord, I have sinned against you” (Ps 51[50]:6). At once He will reply, “As for me, I have overlooked your fault, you shall not die.” Glory to Him from us all, through all ages! Amen, Amen.” ~ An anonymous Syrian writer of the 6th century From a collection of homilies on the sinful woman, 1, 4.5.19.26.28 (Eastern Syrian)

PRAYER – Heavenly Father, teach me to do everything for Your honour and glory. Grant me the grace to work out my salvation with anxious concern each day of my life. St Robert Bellarmine, as you worked tirelessly for the salvation of souls, so now pray for us all, as tirelessly, that we may achieve eternal joy, amen.

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Thought for the Day – 14 September – My Life is Christ

Thought for the Day – 14 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

My Life is Christ

“St Paul reached such a degree of union with Christ that he could exclaim” “To me to live is Christ” (Phil 1:21).
Elsewhere he says” “It is now no longer I that live but Christ lives in me” (Gal 2:20).
This is a characteristic of the Saints.
They live their own lives no longer, for they live the life of Christ.
That is to say, their minds and hearts are always fixed on Jesus.
They love the Lord, more than all things and, more than themselves.
God is the object of all their desires, affections and actions.
As a result, the soul is transfigured and is infused with divine life, so that it does nothing which is not activated by grace.
In the Saints, then, there is reflected something heavenly which attracts and stimulates one to virtue.

The Saints preached effectively in simple, unadorned language, as in the case of the Cure of Ars.
But, their most effective sermon was the example of their lives.
They could say with St Paul: “To me to live is Christ.”
They could repeat the thought of St Jerome: “Christ is the breath of my lips.”
Like St John Chrysostom, they could say: “My heart is the heart of Christ.”
They could say with St Augustine: “I am only an instrument in the service of Christ” and, with St Anselm: “My eyes are the eyes of Christ.”

When we meditate on these words, which signify the height of sanctity, we feel very small, shabby and far from the Christian perfection to which we should aspire.
Perhaps we are still immersed in sin, or perhaps, we are wavering between the things of this world and the things of God, or perhaps, as yet, we have not given up our egoism and complacent mediocrity in order to offer ourselves entirely to God.
Real Christianity demands that we renounce ourselves, live the life of Christ and, make every effort to acquire perfection.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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One Minute Reflection – 9 September – “Blessed are you that weep now, for you shall laugh.” … Luke 6:21

One Minute Reflection – 9 September –Wednesday of the Twenty Third week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 7:25-31Psalms 45:11-1214-1516-17Luke 6:20-26 and the Memorial of St Peter Claver SJ (1581-1654) “Slave of the slaves” and Blessed Frédéric Ozanam (1813–1853) “Servant to the Poor” and Founder of the St Vincent de Paul Society

“Blessed are you that weep now, for you shall laugh.” … Luke 6:21

REFLECTION – “Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted” (Mt 5:5). By this saying the Lord wants us to understand that the path of joy lies in tears. It is through desolation one goes to consolation; in losing one’s life that one finds it; in forsaking it that one possesses it; in hating it that one loves it; in despising it that one keeps it (cf. Mt 16:24 f.). If you would know and have the mastery over yourself, enter within yourself and do not seek yourself without (…) Return to yourself, you sinner, return to where you are, to your heart (…) Will not the one who returns to himself discover himself to be far away, like the prodigal son, in a region of unlikeness, in a foreign land, where he sits and weeps at the memory of his father and his native country? (Lk 15,17) (…)

“Adam, where are you? “(Genesis 3:9) Perhaps still in the shadows, so as not to see yourself, you are sewing leaves together in a vain desire to cover your shame, looking at what is around you and what belongs to you (…). Look inside, look at yourself (…) Return within yourself, you sinner, return to your soul. See and weep for this soul subject to vanity and restlessness who cannot set himself free from his captivity (…) It is clear, my brethren, that we live outside ourselves, we are forgetful of ourselves whenever we fritter our lives away in empty pursuits or distractions decked out with trifles. That is why Wisdom is more concerned to invite us to the house of repentance than the house of feasting, that is to say to call back into himself the man outside himself, saying: “Blessed are they that mourn” and in another passage: “Woe to you who laugh now.”

My brethren, let us groan in the presence of the Lord whose goodness moves Him to forgive; let us turn to Him “with fasting, weeping and mourning “ (Joel 2:12) so that one day His (…) consolation may delight our souls. Blessed indeed are those who weep now, not because they are weeping but because they shall be comforted. Weeping is the way, blessedness the consolation.” Blessed Isaac of Stella O.Cist (c 1100 – c 1170) Sermon 2 for All Saints, 13-20

PRAYER – God of mercy and love, You offer all peoples the dignity of sharing in your life. Rule over our hearts and bodies this day. Sanctify us and guide our every thought, word and deed, may our hands be held out to our neighbour in imitation of Your love and mercy. By the example and prayers of St Peter Claver and Bl Frederic Ozanam, strengthen us to overcome all racial hatreds and to love each other as brothers and sisters. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever amen.

Posted in FRUITS of the SPIRIT, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on REPARATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN

Thought for the Day – 7 September – The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree

Thought for the Day – 7 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree

“Today’s subject for meditation is the parable of the barren fig tree in the Gospel of St Luke.
“A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard and he came seeking fruit thereon and found none. And he said to the vine-dresser, ‘Behold, for tree years now, I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and I find none. Cut it down, therefore; why does it still encumber the ground?’ But he answered him and said, ‘Sir, let it alone this year too, till I dig around it and manure it. Perhaps it may bear fruit but, if not, then afterwards thous shalt cut it down'” (Lk 13:6-9).

Perhaps Jesus has come many times to us also, looking for the fruit of our good works and has found none.
Perhaps, He has continued to bestow favours and blessings upon us and, perhaps, He has waited many years for us to correspond with His grace by performing acts of penance and of expiation.

We may have made good resolutions many times but, what became of them?
Temptations of various kinds may have caused us to neglect these resolutions, which remained like branches without any fruit.
We must remember, that although God is infinitely good and merciful, He is also, infinitely just.
The day could come when He might say: “Cut it down. Why does it still encumber the ground?”
In that case, what would become of us?

An episode described in the Gospel of St Mark, should induce serious reflection.
Jesus was walking from Bethany to Jerusalem and grew hungry on the way.
He saw a fig tree beside the road but, on inspection, found that it was barren.
“And He said to it: ‘May no fruit ever come from thee henceforth forever!’
“And immediately, the fig tree withered up.”

His disciples, we are told, were amazed when they saw this happening (Cf Mt 21:18-20).

How terrible, if God should ever pronounce this severe condemnation upon us!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on GREED, WEALTH, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 7 September – “Stretch forth your hand.” – St Ambrose

One Minute Reflection – 7 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary” – Monday of the Twenty Third week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 5:1-8Psalms 5:5-6712Luke 6:6-11

“On another Sabbath, he entered the synagogue and was teaching and there was a man whose right hand was withered.” … Luke 6:6

REFLECTION“Are you angry at me because I have healed the whole man on the sabbath day?” In this place he revivified, with the salutary strength of good works, the hand which Adam stretched out to pluck the fruit of the forbidden tree. The hand which had withered through a crime, was healed by good deeds. Christ thereby rebuked the Jews who violated the precepts of the law with evil interpretations. They thought that they should rest even from good works on the sabbath, since the law prefigured in the present, the form of the future, in which indeed the days of rest from evils, not from blessings, would come.

Then you heard the words of the Lord, saying, “Stretch forth your hand.” That is the common and universal remedy. You, who think that you have a healthy hand, beware lest it is withered by greed or by sacrilege Hold it out often. Hold it out to the poor person who begs you. Hold it out to help your neighbour, to give protection to a widow, to snatch from harm one whom you see subjected to unjust insult. Hold it out to God for your sins. The hand is stretched forth, then it is healed. Jeroboam’s hand withered when he sacrificed to idols, then it stretched out when he entreated God” … St Ambrose (340-397)- One of the 4 original Doctors of the Latin Church – Exposition on the Gospel of Luke, 5

PRAYER – God of mercy and love, You offer all peoples the dignity of sharing in your life. Rule over our hearts and bodies this day. Sanctify us and guide our every thought, word and deed, my our hands be held out to our neighbour in imitation of Your love and mercy. By the intercession of Mary the Mother of Our Lord Jesus Christ and our Mother, strengthen us to love each other as brothers and sisters. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever amen.

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, MATER DOLOROSA - Mother of SORROWS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 5 September – ‘… The true Sabbath…’ Luke 6:5

One Minute Reflection – 5 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary” – Saturday of the Twenty Second week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 4:6-15, Psalms 145:17-18, 19-20, 21, Luke 6:1-5

And he said to them, “The Son of man is lord of the sabbath.” … Luke 6:5

REFLECTION – “In the Law given by Moses, which was a shadow of things to come (Col 2:17), God commanded everyone to rest and to do no work on the Sabbath. But this was a symbol and foreshadowing of the true Sabbath, which is bestowed on the soul by the Lord (…) For the Lord calls on us to rest, telling us: “Come to me, all you who labour and are burdened, and I will give you rest” (Mt 11:28) And He gives rest to all souls who trust Him and come to Him by delivering them from painful, oppressive and impure thoughts. Then they completely stop indulging in evil, celebrating a true, a delightful and holy Sabbath, a feast of the Spirit in inexpressible joy and rejoicing. They offer a pure and acceptable worship to God, coming from a pure heart. That is the true and holy Sabbath.

So let us, too, beseech God, to bring us into that rest, to give a vacation to our shameful, bad and useless thoughts, so that we might serve God with pure hearts and celebrate the feast of the Holy Spirit. Blessed are they who enter into this rest.” … St Macarius of Egypt (c 300- c 390)- Desert Father, Monk – Spiritual Homilies, no. 35

PRAYER – Holy God, Almighty Father, You taught us to honour Your holy day and the day of rest. In Your divine Son, Whom You gave to us as our brother and glorified by His Resurrection, You showed us the way to our eternal life. As His glorified body shines anew, we rejoice in our future life with Him and embrace His day as our own, each Sunday renewing His Resurrection. We run forward to sing Your glory together with our Holy Mother, the Blessed Virgin and most Sorrowful Mary, to eternity, through our Lord Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.

Posted in "Follow Me", CONFESSION/PENANCE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HOLY SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on REPARATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 3 September – St Pope Gregory the Great!

Quote/s of the Day – 3 September – The Memorial of St Pope Gregory the Great (540-604) – Father & Doctor of the Church

“God is within all things
but not included;
outside all things
but not excluded.
God is above all things
but not beyond their reach.”

“Let no seductive good fortune lead us astray,
he is a foolish traveller
who sees pleasant meadows on his journey
and forgets where he is going.”

“To do penance is to bewail
the evil we have done
and to do no evil to bewail.”

“If some rich and powerful friend were to enter your home,
you would quickly clean the entire house,
for fear something there,
might offend your friend’s eyes, when he entered.
Let anyone then who is preparing his inner house for God,
cleanse away the dirt of his evil deeds.
… The Lord comes into the heart
and makes His home in one,
who truly loves God
and observes His commandments…”

“The Sacred Scriptures grow
with the one who reads them.”

More here:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/09/03/quote-s-of-the-day-3-september-the-memorial-of-st-pope-gregory-the-great-540-604-father-doctor-of-the-church-father-of-the-fathers/

St Pope Gregory the Great (540-604)
Father & Doctor “Father of the Fathers”

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on MISSION, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 3 September – “Put out into the deep and lower your nets for a catch…” … Luke 5:4

One Minute Reflection – 3 September – Thursday of the Twenty-second week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 3:18-23Psalms 24:1-23-45-6Luke 5:1-11 and the Memorial of St Pope Gregory the Great (540-604) – Father & Doctor of the Church

“After He [Jesus] had finished speaking, He said to Simon, “Put out into the deep and lower your nets for a catch…” … Luke 5:4

REFLECTION – “He told Simon and his companions to sail off a little from the land and to let down the net for a draught. But they replied that they had been toiling the whole night and had caught nothing. However, in the name of Christ, they let down the net and immediately it was full of fish.

By a visible sign and by a miraculous type and representation, they were fully convinced that their labour would be rewarded and the zeal displayed in spreading out the net of the gospel teaching would be fruitful. Within this net they should most certainly catch the shoals of the heathen. But note that neither Simon nor his companions could draw the net to land. Speechless from fright and astonishment—for their wonder had made them mute—they beckoned to their partners, to those who shared their labours in fishing, to come and help them in securing their prey.

For many have taken part with the holy apostles in their labours and still do so, especially those who inquire into the meaning of what is written in the holy Gospels. Yet besides them there are also others – the shepherds and teachers and rulers of the people, who are skilled in the doctrines of truth. For the net is still being drawn, while Christ fills it, and calls to conversion those who, according to the Scripture phrase, are in the depths of the sea, that is to say, those who live in the surge and waves of worldly things.” … St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Father and Doctor of the Incarnation – Commentary on Luke, Homily 12

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

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on GRATITUDE, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY SPIRIT, The WILL of GOD, The WORD, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Quote/s of the Day – 31 August – “… The Light of the Only-begotten has Shone on Us …”

Quote/s of the Day – 31 August – Monday of the Twenty Second week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 2:1-5, Psalms 119:97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, Luke 4:16-30

“… The Light of the Only-begotten has Shone on Us …”

“He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free.”

Luke 4:18

“This, beloved, is the way in which we found our salvation,
Jesus Christ, the High Priest who offers our gifts,
the patron and helper in our weakness (Heb 10:20; 7:27; 4:15).
It is through Him, that we look straight at the heavens above.
Through Him, we see mirrored, God’s faultless
and transcendent countenance.
Through Him, the eyes of our heart were opened.
Through Him, our unintelligent and darkened mind shoots up into the light.
Through Him, the Master was pleased to let us taste
the knowledge that never fades,
He who is “the radiance of His splendour,
who towers as much above the angels,
as the title He has inherited, is superior to theirs.”

St Pope Clement I (c 35 – c 99)

“For what reason did God send Him to preach to the poor?
“To preach release to captives.”
We were the captives.
For many years Satan had bound us
and held us captive and subject to himself.
Jesus has come
“to proclaim release to captives and sight to the blind.”
By His word and the proclamation of His teaching,
the blind see.”

Origen (c 185-253)

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

St John Chrysostom (347-407)
Father and Doctor

“He did not treat us as our sins deserved.
For we are now sons of God.
How do we show this?
The only Son of God died for us,
so that He might not remain alone.
He who died as the only Son,
did not want to remain as the only Son.
For the only Son of God made many sons of God.
He bought brothers for Himself by His blood,
He made them welcome by being rejected,
He ransomed them by being sold,
He honoured them by being dishonoured,
He gave them life by being put to death.”

St Augustine (354-430)
Bishop, Great Western Father and Doctor of Grace

An excerpt from his Sermon 171

“You have the words of eternal life”

John 6:68

“These words surely make quite obvious to us
the necessity for sitting at the feet of Christ,
taking Him as our one and only teacher
and giving Him our constant and undivided attention. …
Keeping with their guide was the Israelites’ salvation then,
just as not leaving Christ is ours now.
… We will stay with You always and hold fast to Your commandments.
We will receive Your words without finding fault,
or thinking Your teaching hard,
as the ignorant do but thinking rather:
“How sweet are Your words to my throat!
Sweeter to the mouth are they, than honey or the honeycomb!”

“Our lives are all controlled by the Spirit now
and are not confined to this physical world
that is subject to corruption.
The light of the Only-begotten has shone on us
and we have been transformed into the Word,
the source of all life.”

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

“He is the one who teaches
the truth of prophecy
through His presence
and makes obedience
to the commandments possible,
through grace.”

St Pope Leo the Great (400-461)
Father and Doctor of the Church

Heal us Lord God
Prayer of St Albert of Trapani O.Carm. (c 1240-1307)

O my God,
You have created the human race
by Your wonderful power.
It is an act of Your clemency that has called us
to share Your glory and eternal life.
When the first sin condemned us to suffer death,
out of Your goodness,
You wished to redeem us
through the blood of Your Son,
To unite us to You through our faith
and Your great mercy.
You have brought us back
from the shame of our sin,
You have veiled our dishonour
in the brightness of Your glory.
Look now and see that what You have created,
giving it subtle limbs and joints
and made beautiful through its immortal soul,
is now subject to the attack of Satan.
Be pleased Lord
to reconstitute Your work and heal it.
May Your power be glorified
and may the malice of the enemy be stunned.
Amen

St Albert of Trapani (c 1240-1307)

“Even to the present time
I have not stopped speaking to all men
but many are deaf and obstinate in response.
… He who possesses my words
yet spurns them,
earns his own judgement on the last day.”

Thomas á Kempis (1380-1471)

The Imitation of Christ

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on GRATITUDE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 31 August – And they rose up and put him out of the city … Luke 4:29-30

One Minute Reflection – 31 August – Monday of the Twenty Second week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 2:1-5Psalms 119:979899100101102Luke 4:16-30 and the Memorial of St Raymond Nonnatus O.deM. (1204-1240)

And they rose up and put him out of the city and led him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. But passing through the midst of them he went away….Luke 4:29-30

REFLECTION – “A doctor came amongst us to restore us to health – our Lord Jesus Christ. He discovered blindness in our hearts and promised the light that “eye has not seen and ear has not heard and has not entered the heart of man” (1Cor 2:9).
The humility of Jesus Christ is the cure for your pride. Do not scorn what will bring you healing, be humble, you for whom God humbled Himself. Indeed, He knew that the medicine of humility would cure you, He, who well understood your sickness and knew how to cure it. While you were unable to run to the doctor’s house, the doctor in person came to your house… He is coming, He wants to help you, He knows what you need.
God has come with humility precisely in order that man might imitate Him. If He had remained above you, how would you have been able to imitate Him? And, without imitating Him, how could you be healed? He came with humility because He knew the nature of the remedy He had to administer – a little bitter, it is true but healing. And do you continue to scorn Him? He who holds out the cup to you and you say: “But what sort of God is this God of mine? He was born, suffered, was covered with spittle, crowned with thorns, nailed on the cross!” O miserable soul! You see the doctor’s humility and not the cancer of your pride. That is why humility displeases you…
It often happens that mentally ill people end up by beating their doctor. When that happens, the unfortunate doctor is not only not distressed by the one who beat him but attempts to treat him… As for our doctor, He did not fear being killed by sick people afflicted with madness, He turned His own death into their remedy. Indeed, He died and rose again.”…St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor of the Church

PRAYER – My Lord and my God, help me eternal Father, to overcome my weakness! Teach me to be constantly on guard against my pride, to constantly keep watch for temptation and to live constantly in prayer, that Your Son will lead me to safety. St Raymond Nonnatus, you suffered torture but always remain prayerful and awake, imitating the Lord, please pray for me, amen.

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on TIME

Thought for the Day – 30 August – Perseverance

Thought for the Day – 30 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Perseverance

“He who has persevered to the end,” Jesus tells us, “will be saved” (Mt 10:22; 24:13).
Elsewhere He says that “no-one, having put his hand to the plough and looking back, is fit for the kingdome of God” (Cf Lk 9:62).
It is necessary, therefore, to persevere in goodness, if we wish to be saved.

It is easy to begin but, it is difficult to continue.
In a moment of fervour, perhaps, you promised to be holy.
Maybe some misfortune came your way, such as the loss of someone very dear to you and you were moved to meditate upon the vanity of earthly things and promised to dedicated yourself entirely to God.
In that moment, you experienced the truth of the words of Ecclesiastes, summarised in The Imitation of Christ: “Vanity of vanities and all is vanity but, to love God and serve Him alone” (Bk 1, c 1:4).

Unfortunately, your good resolutions wore away with time.
You may have been swept away once more by the deceptive pleasures of this world.
Or perhaps, your charity grew cold and in your tepidity, you gave into the violent onslaught of temptation.

Christian perseverance has three main enemies.
(1) Firstly, there is time, which slowly consumes this virtue.
You must conquer time by resolving to begin the battle anew every morning of your life.
(2) Then there is the devil, who goes about, as St Peter warns us, like a lion in search of his prey (Cf 1 Peter 5:8).
You must resist him by the strength of your faith.
(3) Finally, there is spiritual sloth, which easily invades the soul.
You must take your cue from St Paul’s exhortation: “My beloved brethren, be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labour is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor 15:58).

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FREE WILL, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MUSIC/SINGING, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on TIME, QUOTES on TRUTH, QUOTES on WORRY/ANXIETY, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY CROSS, The LAMB of GOD, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD

Quotes of the Day – 28 August – St Augustine

Quotes of the Day – 28 August – The Memorial of St Augustine of Hippo (354-430) – Father and Doctor of Grace

“To fall in love with God,
is the greatest romance;
to seek Him,
the greatest adventure;
to find Him,
the greatest human achievement.”

“You ask what you might offer to God?
Offer yourself!
What does God expect from you,
except yourself?”

“He bought brothers for Himself by His blood,
He made them welcome by being rejected,
He ransomed them by being sold,
He honoured them by being dishonoured,
He gave them life by being put to death.
So, brethren, rejoice in the Lord,
not in the world.
That is, rejoice in the truth,
not in wickedness,
rejoice in the hope of eternity,
not in the fading flower of vanity.
That is the way to rejoice.
Wherever you are on earth,
however long you remain on earth,
the Lord is near,
do not be anxious about anything!”

“God provides the wind
but man must raise the sails.”

“A man may lose the good things
of this life against his will
but, if he loses the eternal blessings,
he does so with his own consent.”

“Do you wish to RISE?
Begin by DESCENDING.
You plan a tower
that will pierce the CLOUDS?
Lay first the foundation
of HUMILITY.”

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

“He who calls us, came here below,
to give us the means of getting there.
He chose the wood
that would enable us to cross the sea –
indeed, no-one can cross the ocean of this world,
who is not borne by the Cross of Christ.
Even the blind can cling to this Cross.
If you can’t see where you are going very well,
don’t let go of it, it will guide you by itself. ”

“We pray then to Him,
through Him, in Him
and we speak along with Him
and He along with us. ”

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

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on FREE WILL, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on INDIFFERENCE, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on VIRTUE

Thought for the Day – 27 August – Those Who Will to be Damned

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

Those Who Will to be Damned

“There are many who are so steeped in vice that they never think of eternity and seek their happiness in sinful and worldly pleasures.
They have grown deaf to God’s voice, although He instils in them remorse and restlessness and invites them by good inspirations, to return to His merciful embrace.
They are deaf, too, to the voice of conscience, which, in spite of their degradation, cannot fail to make them feel the attractiveness of virtue and their great need of their Creator.
They are fundamentally unhappy, doubly so because, in this life “there is no peace to the wicked” (Is 48:22) and, in the next life, they will be damned forever.
Only a miracle of divine grace can save them from the abyss into which they have voluntarily precipitated themselves.

There are others who want to have their heaven both in this world and in the next.
They oscillate uncertainly, between good and evil, today being full of good resolutions and tomorrow giving way to sin because virtue seems to demand too many sacrifices.
They would like to be good but they will not take the necessary trouble.

Indecisive and lukewarm, they think that they can serve God and the devil at the same time!
Naturally, this is impossible, as Christ has told us, “No man can serve two masters … You cannot serve God and mammon” (Mt 6:24).
If people of this kind will not make up their minds, they are running the risk of eternal damnation.

To what category do you belong?
Think about this and make a firm decision.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on ABORTION, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on WORK/LABOUR, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 27 August – “Stay awake! … for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.” … Matthew 24:42,44

One Minute Reflection – 27 August – Thursday of the Twenty First week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 1: 1-9Psalms 145: 2-34-56-7Matthew 24: 42-51 and the Memorial of Bl Amadeus of Lausanne OCist (1110—1159) Bishop

Jesus said to his disciples: “Stay awake! … for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.” … Matthew 24:42,44

REFLECTION – “Listen to my words and give ear to my humble discourses,I cry out to you all, I exhort you: “Lift up your hearts to God, unbind yourselves from your attachment to the passions!” Here is what the prophet cries to you: “Come, let us go up to the Lord’s mountain, to the house of the God of Jacob” (Is 2:3), which is that of impassibility and let us contemplate with the eyes of our mind,s the joy held in store for us by the heavenly promises.
My beloved children, gather up your fervour, take wings of fire like the dove, as it is written, fly away (cf. Ps 54[55]:7), place yourselves among the virtuous, those on the right side (Mt 25:33). Receive joy, spiritual desire, impassioned for God. Taste the great sweetness of His love (cf. Rev 10:9-10) and, by it, considering all else as secondary, tread vainglory underfoot, the desire of the flesh and bitter anger! (…)
Let us hike up our tunics, be on the alert, have eagle eyes – this is the speediest flight for the trip that leads us from earth to heaven! It is true that travellers can have something to endure. And this happens to you too – indeed, as you see, you struggle under hard labours, you tire yourselves, you work the ground until you are out of breath, you pour with sweat, you are at the end of your strength, hungry, thirsty, one of you labouring at the plough, the other cultivating the vineyard, another pressing oil, or cooking, constructing, making bread or busy about the cellar. Briefly, each is at their post. All go forward on the highway to God, they approach the great city and, in death, they will have entry to the unutterable joy of the good things God reserves for all those who have loved Him! (…)
May we be accounted worthy of the kingdom of Christ Himself, our God, to whom belongs all glory and power with the Father and the Holy Spirit, now and forever, world without end. Amen.” … St Theodore the Studite (759-826) Monk at Constantinople – Catechesis 16

PRAYER – Lord God, renew Your Church with the Spirit of wisdom and love which You gave to St Amadeus. Lead us by that same Spirit, to seek You, the only fountain of true wisdom and the source of everlasting love. May we turn to You in sorrow and true repentance when we fail and strive always and everywhere to live in Your truth and Your love for all and thus be ready when You come. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, in union with the Spirit, one God, forever and ever. St Amadeus, pray for Holy Mother Church and for us all, amen.

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN TITLES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 26 August – “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!” Matthew 23:27

One Minute Reflection – 26 August – Wednesday of the Twenty First week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 2 Thessalonians 3: 6-1016-18Psalms 128: 1-24-5Matthew 23: 27-32 and the Memorial of Our Lady of Czestochowa

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you are like whitewashed sepulchres, which outwardly appear beautiful but within they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.” … Matthew 23:27

REFLECTION – “You are before God. Question your heart, see what you have done and what you have been yearning for there—your salvation or the windy praise of men. Look within, for a person cannot judge one whom he cannot see. If we are assuring our heart, let us assure it in His presence.
“Because if our heart thinks badly”—that is, if it accuses us within, because we aren’t acting with the spirit with which we should be acting —“God is greater than our heart, and he knows all things” (v.20).
You hide your heart from man – hide it from God if you can . How will you hide it from Him to whom it was said by a certain sinner in fear and confession: “Where shall 1 go from your spirit, and where shed! I flee from your face?”… For where does God not exist? “If,” he said, “I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to hell, you are present” (Ps 139[138]:7-8). Where will you go? Where will you flee? Do you want to hear some advice? If you want to flee from Him, flee to Him. Flee to Him by Confessing, not from Him by hiding, for you cannot hide but you can Confess. Tell Him. “You are my refuge” (Ps 32[31]:7) and let there be nursed in you the love that alone leads to life.”…St Augustine (354-430) – Doctor of Grace

PRAYER – Lord, be the beginning and the end of all that we do and say. Prompt our actions with Your grace and complete them with Your all-powerful help. Fill us with the grace of Your true love, that our hearts may be made of flesh and not of stone. May our hearts, minds and souls belong to You alone. May the guiding hand of the Mother of Your Son lead us, with unfailing tenderness, to You. Through our Lord, Jesus Christ, in union with the Holy Spirit, ‘totus tuus’ Maria – please pray for us, amen.

Posted in MARIAN TITLES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, ORIGINAL SIN, QUEENSHIP of MARY, QUOTES for the NEW YEAR, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on VIRTUE

One Minute Reflection – 22 August – “Whoever exalts himself will be humbled and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.” … Matthew 23:12

One Minute Reflection – 22 August – Saturday of the Twentieth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Ezekiel 43: 1-7ab, Psalms 85: 9ab,10, 11-12, 13-14, Matthew 23:1-12 and The Memorial of the Queenship of Mary

“Whoever exalts himself will be humbled and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.” … Matthew 23:12

REFLECTION – “Humility is a secret power the saints receive when they bring all their life’s ascetical practices to a successful conclusion. For indeed, this power is only bestowed on those who attain to the perfection of virtue through the strength of grace … It is the same power the blessed Apostles received in the form of fire. Our Saviour commanded them, in fact, not to leave Jerusalem until they had received the power from on high (Acts 2:3; 1:4). Here Jerusalem stands for virtue; the power is humility and the power from on high, is the Paraclete, in other words the Consoler Spirit.

Now this is exactly what Sacred Scripture had said – these mysteries are revealed to the humble (Lk 10:21). To the humble it is given to receive within themselves that Spirit of revelation that uncovers mysteries. That is why certain saints have said that humility is what brings the soul to fulfilment in divine contemplation. So let no-one start thinking they have attained complete humility because at some moment a thought of compunction came to them or because they shed a few tears …. But if someone has overcome every contrary spirit …, if he has overturned and subjected all the strongholds of the enemy and if he then feels that he has received that grace in which “the Spirit bears witness to our spirit” (Rom 8:16), in the apostle Paul’s words, then there is the perfection of humility. Blessed are they who possess it. For they continually embrace the breast of Jesus (cf. Jn 13,25).” … St Isaac the Syrian of Nineveh (c 613-c 700) Bishop of Nineveh, Monk at Mosul – Ascetical discourses, 1st series, no 20

PRAYER – Almighty God, our Father, You have given us Mary, the Mother of Your Son, to be our Mother and our Queen. Grant that, supported by her example and her prayers, we may learn true humility and come to the kingdom of heaven and to the glory destined for Your children. We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.