Posted in 7 GIFTS of the HOLY SPIRIT, FRUITS of the SPIRIT, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SIN, The 3rd Glorious Mystery - DESCENT of the HOLY SPIRIT, The HOLY SPIRIT

Thought for the Day – 15 April – What the Holy Spirit Requires of Us

Thought for the Day – 15 April – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

What the Holy Spirit Requires of Us

“The Holy Spirit, coming into our souls, asks us to do four things, in particular.

(1) To keep far from us everything which could be displeasing to God.
This means that we must avoid sin, which is hateful to God and brings about the death of the soul.
When the sin is grave, it destroys charity in us; when it is venial sin, it diminishes our fervour and capacity for good action.
We have become the temples of the Holy Spirit.
Let us do our best, therefore, to keep ourselves pure and free from every stain of sin.
“Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, in whom you were sealed for the day of redemption” (Eph 4:30).

(2) To avoid contamination by the spirit of the world, which is repugnant to the Spirit of God.
The world is selfish and we should be on fire with love for God and for our neighbour.
The world is vain and proud and we should love obscurity, recollection and humility.
The world looks for happiness in honour, wealth and pleasure in the passing goods of this life.
We, on the other hand, should seek our happiness in eternal and heavenly values because God alone can satisfy our hearts and make us happy.

(3) Too avoid affections which are too human and sensual.
Only the clean of heart can see and enjoy God.
All the objects and all the people of this world, should form for us, a ladder which leads to God.

(4) To seek the divine inspiration of the Holy Spirit, in recollection and in prayer.

We should listen for His voice within us, inspiring and advising us.
We should do, obediently, whatever He desires, no matter what sacrifices this may entail.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/06/24/thought-for-the-day-24-june-what-the-holy-spirit-requires-of-us/

Posted in "Follow Me", DOGMA, EASTER, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on HAPPINESS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, QUOTES on TRUTH, The RESURRECTION

Thought for the Day – 5 April – The Resurrection

Thought for the Day – 5 April – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Resurrection

“Even as Jesus rose from the dead, so we shall rise again.
This is a Dogma of ou faith.
“I believe … in the resurrection of the body.”
When Job was seated on his dunghill, his body rotting with leprosy, deserted by everybody, scorned by his wife and reproved by his friends, he found comfort in this great truth.
“I know that my Vindicator lives and that he will at last, stand forth on the dust where I myself shall see and, not another – and from my flesh, I shall see God – my inmost being is consumed with longing” (Job 19:25-27).
St Paul describes this resurrection.
In the twinkling of an eye, he says, at the sound of the trumpet of the Eternal Judge, our bodies will reformed and will have life again.
We shall all rise but not all in the same manner.
The body, which was the companion of the soul during our mortal life, will once again be its companion and share with it, either the eternal glory of Heaven, or the everlasting pains of Hell (Cf 1 Cor 15).
We shall live forever like Jesus.
“I believe in life everlasting,” in everlasting happiness, in Heaven or in eternal damnation in Hell.
This great truth is a warning to us.
If we remember it all our lives, we shall not steer our course towards evil and towards Hell but, towards goodness and towards Heaven, where one day, we shall come to rest in a land of lasting happiness.

Our life should be a continual resurrection, a continual ascent towards perfection, which will raise us from sin, to the state of grace, from the state of grace, to fervour and from fervour to sanctity.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/04/15/thought-for-the-day-15-april-the-resurrection/

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, GOOD FRIDAY, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The 5th Sorrowful Mystery - The CRUCIFIXION, The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 2 April – The Crucifixion

Thought for the Day – 2 April – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Crucifixion

“After a painful and exhausting journey, Jesus reaches Calvary, where He is to be Crucified.
Once again, He is stripped of His garments, which, by this time, have become stuck to His swollen sores.
Then, He is stretched upon the wooden Cross, to which, one of the brutal executioners fastens His Hands and Feet, with blows from a hammer.
The sharp nails are driven through His flesh into the hard wood.
Jesus looks upwards and offers Himself in silence, as a Victim of Expiation, on behalf of His tormentors and of all of us.
His Mother Mary, is standing a few paces away in the company of the holy women and of the beloved Disciple.
The blows of the hammer pierce the maternal heart of the Blessed Virgin but,she remains silent also and prays.

When we have been afflicted by misfortune or sorrow and our hearts are racked with grief, how do we behave?
Have we the resignation, the trust in God and the spirit of prayer, which Jesus and Mary had on Calvary?
Let us remind ourselves, that we are members of the Mystical Body of Christ.
If Jesus our Head, has suffered, how much more, do miserable sinners like the rest of us ,deserve to suffer!?
Jesus wishes us to participate in the work of redemption by uniting our sufferings to His.
“I rejoice now,” says St Paul, “in the suffering I bear … and what is lacking of the suffering of Christ, I fill up in my flesh…” (Col 1:24).

Let us face adversity with courage, therefore and keep our eyes hopefully towards Heaven.
Let us remember, as St Paul also says, that even as we share in the sufferings of Christ, so we shall share in His triumph (Cf 2 Cor 1:7).
Jesus had to ascen Mount Calvary, before He could ascend to Heaven.
If we are to walk in His footsteps, we shall have to do the same.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on HAPPINESS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN

Thought for the Day – 21 March – The Power of God’s Love in the Christian Life

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

The Power of God’s Love
in the Christian Life

“The love which we have for God, our Creator, Redeemer and Benefactor, should not be merely sentimental.
It must be effective.
When love is sincere, it is active.
It is not enought to say: I love You, O my God.
We must show by our actions, that we love Him.
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the Kingdom of Heaven,” Jesus tells us, “but he who does the will of my Father in heaven, shall enter the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 7:21).
Our love must be active, therefore.
Moreover, we must avoid and detest sin because it is an offence against God and, we must strive to become holy.
This involves sacrifice but sacrifice is the touchstone of love.
Anyone in love, is not afraid of sacrifice – in fact, he looks for it, in order to prove his love.
Charity, like faith, is a lifeless thing, if it is not accompanied by actions (Cf Js 2:17).
We must love God by doing everything for love of Him.
God will repay us generously, ot only in the next life but even in the present.
Even on earth, the only real happiness, is that whch comes from Him.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/03/24/thought-for-the-day-24-march-the-power-of-gods-love-in-the-christian-life/

Posted in LENT 2021, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on SUFFERING, The KINGDOM of GOD, The LAST THINGS, The WORD, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Day Twenty nine of our Lenten Journey – 17 March – Ought not all trials be borne for the sake of everlasting life? In truth, the loss or gain of God’s kingdom, is up to you

Day Twenty nine of our Lenten Journey 17 March – Wednesday of the Fourth Week of Lent, Readings: Isaiah 49:8-15, Psalms 145:8-9,13-14, 17-18, John 5:17-30

Imitating Christ with Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471)

In You is the source of life
and in Your Light Lord, we see light

Psalm 35(36)

“ An hour is coming when all who are in the tombs, will hear his voice and come out, those who have done good, to the resurrection of life and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of judgement.” – John 5:28-29

CHRIST: MY CHILD, do not let the labours, which you have taken up, for My sake, break you and do not let troubles, from whatever source, cast you down but in everything, let My promise strengthen and console you. I am able to reward you beyond all means and measure.

You will not labour here long, nor will you always be oppressed by sorrows. Wait a little while and you will see a speedy end of evils. The hour will come when all labour and trouble shall be no more.
All that passes away with time is trivial.

What you do, do well. Work faithfully in My vineyard.
I will be your reward.
Write, read, sing, mourn, keep silence, pray and bear hardships like a man. Eternal life is worth all these and greater battles.
Peace will come on a day which is known to the Lord and then there shall be no day or night, as at present but perpetual light, infinite brightness, lasting peace and safe repose.
Then you will not say: “Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” nor will you cry: “Woe is me because my sojourn is prolonged.” For then death will be banished and there will be health unfailing.
There will be no anxiety then, but blessed joy and sweet noble companionship.

If you could see the everlasting crowns of the saints in heaven and the great glory wherein they now rejoice – they who were once considered contemptible in this world and, as it were, unworthy of life itself – you would certainly humble yourself at once, to the very earth and seek to be subject to all, rather than to command even one.
Nor would you desire the pleasant days of this life but rather, be glad to suffer for God, considering it your greatest gain, to be counted as nothing among men.

Oh, if these things appealed to you and penetrated deeply into your heart, how could you dare to complain even once?
Ought not all trials be borne for the sake of everlasting life?
In truth, the loss or gain of God’s kingdom, is up to you.

Lift up your countenance to heaven, then.
Behold Me, and with Me all My saints.
They had great trials in this life but now they rejoice.
They are consoled. Now they are safe and at rest. And they shall abide with Me for all eternity in the kingdom of My Father.
(Book 3 Ch 47)

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, DIVINE MERCY, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on BAD CONVERSATION, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on REPENTANCE

Thought for the Day –17 March – Two Paths to Heaven – Part Two

Thought for the Day –17 March – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Two Paths to Heaven – Part Two

“If we have been unfortunate enough to have lost our Baptismal innocence by falling into sin, we should not be discouraged.
God’s mercy opens another way for us, the way of penance.
“I have come,” Jesus tells us,“to call sinners, not the just” (Mt 9:13).

Our Divine Redeemer, foresaw, in the Garden of Gethsemane ALL our sins and acts of ingratitude.
Nevertheless, He offered Himself as a victim of expiation on our behalf and, shed His Precious Blood upon the Cross, for our redemption.
How would it be possible for Him to refuse to forgive us?
How could He not long to save us, in spite of our sins?

Let us recall the consoling parables of the prodigal son and the lost sheep.
If we feel that we fall into the category of prodigal sons or lost sheep, then let us turn NOW to Jesus for forgiveness.”

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/08/26/thought-for-the-day-26-august-two-paths-to-heaven-part-one/

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, The LAST THINGS, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 17 March – Death

Quote/s of the Day – 17 March – Wednesday of the Fourth Week of Lent, Readings: Isaiah 49:8-15, Psalms 145:8-9,13-14, 17-18, John 5:17-30

“I tell you for certain,
that everyone who hears my message
and has faith in the one who sent me,
has eternal life
and will never be condemned.
They have already gone from death to life.”

John 5:24

“You do not know
when your last day may come.
You are an ingrate!
Why not use the day, today,
that God has given you
to repent?”

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

“Keep a clear eye toward life’s end.
Do not forget your purpose
and destiny as God’s creature.
What you are in His sight,
is what you are and nothing more.
Remember that when you leave this earth,
you can take nothing that you have received…
but only what you have given – a full heart
enriched by honest service, love, sacrifice and courage.”

St Francis of Assisi (c 1181-1226)

“Do now,
what you wish to have done,
when your moment
comes to die.”

St Angela Merici (1474-1540)

“See, my children,
to die well, we must live well;
to live well, we must seriously examine ourselves,
every evening think over what we have done during the day;
at the end of each week, review what we have done during the week;
at the end of each month, review what we have done during the month;
at the end of the year, what we have done during the year.
By this means, my children,
we cannot fail to correct ourselves
and to become fervent Christians in a short time.
Then, when death comes, we are quite ready,
we are happy to go to Heaven.”

St John Vianney (1786-1859)

Posted in DIVINE MERCY, FATHERS of the Church, LENTEN THOUGHTS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, The LAST THINGS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 26 February – “Give, Lord because we have given.” Matthew 5:20-26

One Minute Reflection – 26 February – Friday of the First Week of Lent, Readings Ezekiel 18:21-28Psalms 130:1-23-45-77-8Matthew 5:20-26

“Go first and be reconciled with your brother” – Matthew 5:24

REFLECTION – “In heaven there is a mercy that we attain by mercy here on earth… And there are two kinds of almsgiving: one good, the other better. The first consists in offering a morsel of bread to the poor; the other in at once forgiving the brother who has sinned against you. With our Lord’s help let us hasten to put into practice these two kinds of almsgiving that we may be fit to receive eternal pardon and the true mercy that is Christ’s. For He Himself has said: “If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you will not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions” (Mt 6,14-15). And elsewhere the Holy Spirit cries aloud: “Should a man nourish anger against his fellows and expect healing from the Lord? Should a man refuse mercy to his fellows yet seek God’s pardon for his own sins?” (Sir 28,3-4)…

Let us make haste as much as we can and, for as long as we live, to acquire these two kinds of alms and distribute them to others. Then, on the day of judgement, we shall be able to say with full assurance: “Give, Lord, because we have given.” St Caesarius of Arles (470-543) Bishop and Monk – Sermons to the people no.25

PRAYER – Lord God, true light and creator of light, grant that faithfully following the instructions of Your Son and pondering all that is holy, we may ever live in the splendour of Your presence. By the gifts of the Holy Spirit, may we always be light to our neighbour. Mary, Mother of Love and our loving mother, by your prayers, may we grow in charity and love. We make our prayer through Christ, our Lord 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 "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, GOD ALONE!, LENT 2021, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on TRUTH, The HEART, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Day Six of our Lenten Journey – 22 February – Let Your truth teach me.

Day Six of our Lenten Journey – 22 February – The Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter, Readings: 1 Peter 5:1-4, Psalm 23:1-3,4-5, Matthew 16:13-19

Imitating Christ with Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471)

In Your Light Lord, we see light

“He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”
Simon Peter said in reply, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
– Matthew 16:15-16

CHRIST: MY CHILD, walk before Me in truth and seek Me always in the simplicity of your heart. He who walks before Me in truth shall be defended from the attacks of evil and the truth shall free him from seducers and from the slanders of wicked men. For if the truth has made you free, then you shall be free indeed and you shall not care for the vain words of men.

DISCIPLE: O Lord, it is true. I ask that it be with me as You say. Let Your truth teach me. Let it guard me and keep me safe to the end. Let it free me from all evil affection and badly ordered love and I shall walk with You in great freedom of heart.

CHRIST: I shall teach you those things which are right and pleasing to Me. Consider your sins with great displeasure and sorrow and never think yourself to be virtuous because of your good works.
You are truly a sinner. You are subject to many passions and entangled in them. Of yourself you always tend to nothing. You fall quickly, are quickly overcome, quickly troubled and quickly undone. You have nothing in which you can glory but you have many things for which you should think yourself vile, for you are much weaker than you can comprehend.
Hence, let none of the things you do seem great to you. Let nothing seem important or precious or desirable except that which is everlasting. Let the eternal truth please you above all things and let your extreme unworthiness always displease you. Fear nothing so much, blame and abhor nothing so much as your own vices and sins; these should be more unpleasant for you than any worldly losses.

Some men walk before Me without sincerity. Led on by a certain curiosity and arrogance, they wish to know My secrets and to understand the high things of God, to the neglect of themselves and their own salvation. Through their own pride and curiosity and because I am against them, such men often fall into great temptations and sins. I leave them to their own devices without My help and counsel!

Fear the judgements of God! Dread the wrath of the Almighty! Do not discuss the works of the Most High but examine your sins — in what serious things you have offended and how many good things you have neglected.

Some carry their devotion only in books, some in pictures, some in outward signs and figures. Some have Me on their lips when there is little of Me in their hearts.
Others, indeed, with enlightened understanding and purified affections, constantly long for everlasting things, they are unwilling to hear of earthly affairs and only with reluctance do they serve the necessities of nature.
These sense what the Spirit of truth speaks within them, for He teaches them to despise earthly things and to love those of heaven, to neglect the world and each day and night, to desire heaven.
(Book 3 Ch 4:1-4)

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on WORK/LABOUR

Thought for the Day – 21 February – Detachment from the World

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

Detachment from the World

“St John Bosco said, that we should ork as if we never had to die.
But, we should also be as detached from worldly things, as if we had to die in one hour.
A man who works like this, can accomplish wonders because, he is not working for himself but, for God.
We should work and pray with our feet on the earth and our minds in heaven.
We should seek God, not ourselves, in everything which we do.
Let us remember, that one moment in Heaven, is worth infinitely more than all the pleasure, love and vanity of this world!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/03/12/thought-for-the-day-12-march-detachment-from-the-world/

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, LENT 2021, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 18 February – “The servant is not greater than his Master”

Quote/s of the Day – 18 February – Thursday after Ash Wednesday, Readings: Deuteronomy 30:15-20, Psalms 1:1-2, 3, 4 and 6, Luke 9:22-25

“The servant is not greater than his Master”

John 13:16

“Only let it be in the name of Jesus Christ,
that I may suffer together with Him!
I endure everything
because He Himself,
Who is perfect man, empowers me.”

St Ignatius of Antioch (c 35 – 107)

“Oh cherished cross!
Through thee my most bitter trials
are replete with graces!”

St Paul of the Cross (1604-1775)

“Humility, obedience, meekness
and love are the virtues
that shine through the Cross
and the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar.
O my Jesus, help me imitate you!”

“To labour and to suffer
for the One we love,
is the greatest proof of our love.”

St Anthony Mary Claret (1807-1870)

“It is only through suffering
that we become holy.
And to become holy is our only purpose in life,
our only preparation for heaven.”

Bl Francis Xavier Seelos CSsR (1819-1867)

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, NOVEMBER - Month of the SOULS in PURGATORY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, QUOTES on VIRTUE, The HOLY SOULS

Thought for the Day – 27 March – The Human Soul

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

The Human Soul

“Consider that you have only one soul, which belongs entirely to God and has Heaven for its true home.
God has given you two hands, two feet, two ears and two eyes but, He has given you only one soul.
What a disaster, if you should lose it, for you would then be damned forever!
When God made you to be free, He placed your fate in your own hands.
“When God, in the beginning, created man, He made him subject to his own free choice” (Ecclus 15:14).
Remember that the salvation of your soul is the most necessary work which you have to do!
It is more precious to you than gold or silver.
“More precious than gold is health and well-being, contentment of spirit, than coral” (Ecclus 30:15).
All our attention should be devoted to keeping our soul free from sin and endowing it with every virtue.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One Here:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/03/27/thought-for-the-day-27-march-the-human-soul/

Posted in DIVINE MERCY, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DESPAIR, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 24 September – Faith and Hope

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

Faith and Hope

“Christian hope derives from faith.
When we believe in the infinitely good and merciful God, Who was made man for us and Who shed His Precious Blood, for our salvation, we experience a great hope and a great confidence.
No matter how numerous our sins and our defects, as long as we are sincerely repentant, we should continue to hope for the forgiveness of God.
Despair, which led Judas to commit suicide, should never be allowed to enter our minds.
Like the penitent Magdalen, like the prodigal son, like the lost sheep and, like the good thief, let us trust in Jesus with faith, hope and sorrow for our sins.
Let us remember, that He is infinitely good and merciful and ardently desires to pardon us.
Together with this hope of God’s forgiveness, we should nurture the hope of gaining Heaven, which the Lord, in His infinite goodness, has promised, not only to innocent souls but, also to repentant sinners.
In order that this hope may not be in vain, however, we should include, in our repentance for our sins, a firm purpose of amendment.

Let us remember, that the more we hope for, the more we shall obtain!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One Here:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/09/25/thought-for-the-day-24-september-faith/

Posted in "Follow Me", DOMINICAN OP, GOD ALONE!, JANUARY month of THE MOST HOLY NAME of JESUS, ON the SAINTS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SILENCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY NAME, The WILL of GOD

Quote/s of the Day – 23 January – Blessed Henry Suso

Quote/s of the Day – 23 January – “Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” and The Memorial of Blessed Henry Suso OP (1295-1366)

“Faith in Jesus and in the power of His Holy Name
is the greatest spiritual force in the world today.
It is a source of joy and inspiration in our youth;
of strength in our manhood,
when only His Holy Name and His grace,
can enable us to overcome temptation;
of hope, consolation
and confidence at the hour of our death,
when more than ever before,
we realise, that the meaning of Jesus is
‘Lord, the Saviour.’
We should bow in reverence to His Name
and submission to His Holy Will.”

“Suffering is the ancient law of love;
there is no quest without pain;
there is no lover who is not also a martyr.”

“Remember, that you will derive strength
by reflecting, that the saints yearn
for you to join their ranks;
desire to see you fight bravely
and, that you behave like true knights
in your encounters with the same adversities
which they had to conquer.
That
breath-taking joy is theirs
and your eternal reward
for having endured a few years of temporal pain.
Every drop of earthly bitterness
will be changed into an ocean
of heavenly sweetness!”

“I have often repented of having spoken.
I have never repented of silence.”

“Let each look to himself
and see what God wants of him
and attend to this,
leaving all else alone.”

Blessed Henry Suso (1295-1366)

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Thought for the Day – 20 January – Carrying our Cross – The Royal Road

Thought for the Day – 20 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Carrying our Cross – The Royal Road

“There is only one way to become holy and to win Heaven.
This is the way of the Cross.
The Imitation of Christ contains some moving thoughts on the subject of the royal road of the Cross.
We shall summarise them here.

The words of Jesus seem hard to many: “Renounce yourself, take up your cross and follow Me.”
But, it would be much harder to hear on the last day those terrible words: “Depart from Me, you cursed, into everlasting fire.”
Those who listen now and accept the message of the Cross, need not be afraid of hearing this irrevocable sentence on that day.
Why avoid the way of the Cross if it is the only road which leads to Heaven?
In the Cross there is salvation; in the Cross there is protection from our enemies.
If we carry our cross with submission and love, we shall find peace of soul.
If we intertwine our cross with the Cross of Jesus, we shall obtain energy of mind, joy of spirit and perfect holiness.
If we die on the Cross with Jesus, we shall live with Him in eternal happiness.
If we are His companions in suffering, we shall also be with Him one day in glory (Rom 6:8).

Everything depends on our dying on the Cross with Jesus.
There is no other way to life and to true interior peace but the way of the Holy Cross and of daily mortification (Imitation of Christ, Bk II ch 12).”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Quote/s of the Day – 20 January – Our only “Mask”

Quote/s of the Day – 20 January

Our only “Mask

Do not let love and fidelity forsake you,
bind them around your neck,
write them on the tablet of your heart.
Then will you win favour and esteem
before God and human beings.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
on your own intelligence do not rely.
In all your ways be mindful of him,
and he will make straight your paths.”

Proverbs 3:3-6

“Whatever you do, do from the heart,
as for the Lord and not for others,
knowing that you will receive
from the Lord
the due payment of the inheritance;
be slaves of the Lord Christ.”

Colossians 3:23-24

“So then let us cast off the works of darkness
and put on the armour of light. …
But put on the Lord Jesus Christ
and make no provision
for the flesh, to gratify its desires.”

Romans 13:12,14

“He [Christ], protects their faith
and gives strength to believers,
in proportion to the TRUST,
that each man,
who receives that strength,
is willing to place in Him.”

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

“Remember God
more often
than you breathe!”

St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“… There is one Road
and one only,
well secured against all possibility
of going astray
and, this Road is provided
by One Who is Himself
both God and man.
As God, He is the Goal,
as man, He is the Way.”

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

“Loving You, O God,
brings its own reward here on earth,
as well as the eternal reward of heaven.
By becoming mirrors of Your love,
by wearing the mask of Your likeness
and by allowing You to make us perfect,
we can know the joy of heaven,
even while we abide here on earth.”

William of St Thierry O.Cist (c 1075 – c 1148)
Cistercian Monk, Mystic, Theologian, Writer

“May He,
Who is the Track of the runners
and the Reward of the winners,
lead and guide you along it –
He, Christ Jesus!”

Bl Guerric of Igny O.Cist (c 1080-1157)
Cistercian Abbot

“Christ is both the way and the door.
Christ is the staircase and the vehicle …”

St Bonaventure (1221-1274)
Seraphic Doctor

“He who wishes for anything but Christ,
does not know what he wishes;
he who asks for anything but Christ,
does not know what he is asking;
he who works and not for Christ,
does not know what he is doing.”

St Philip Neri (1515-1595)

Transform me into Yourself
By St John Gabriel Perboyre (1802-1840) Martyr

O my Divine Saviour,
Transform me into Yourself.
May my hands be the hands of Jesus.
Grant that every faculty of my body
May serve only to glorify You.
Above all,
Transform my soul and all it’s powers
So that my memory, will and affection
May be the memory, will and affections
Of Jesus.
I pray You
To destroy in me all that is not of You.
Grant that I may live
but in You, by You and for You,
So that I may truly say, with Saint Paul,
“I live – now not I – But Christ lives in me.
Amen

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER

Thought for the Day – 17 January – The Help of God

Thought for the Day – 17 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Help of God

“There are several passages in Sacred Scripture which emphasise clearly and effectively, our utter weakness and dependence on God.
“Not that we are sufficient of ourselves,” says St Paul, “to think anything, as from ourselves but our sufficiency is from God” (2 Cor 3:5).

Jesus warns us, that without Him, we can do nothing: “Without me, you can do nothing” (Jn 15:5).
He uses the allegory of the vine and the branches as an illustration of this.
I am the vine, He says and you are the branches.
So it is necessary for you to remain united to me and I to you.
In the same way as a branch that does not live on, in the vine, can yield no fruit of itself, so you can do nothing, if you do not live on in Me.
If anyone does not remain united to Me, he will be like a withered branch which is thrown into the fire to be burned (Jn 15),

We must remain united to Jesus, therefore, if we wish to do anything good and to merit everlasting life.
Otherwise, the supernatural life of grace will not be transmitted to us.
If Jesus is not there, death comes into our souls.
Let us remain close to our Divine Redeemer.
If we continue to live in Him, He will give us everything we ask, as He has promised: “If you abide in me and, if my words abide in you, ask whatever you will and it shall be done to you” (Jn 15:7).

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One of this thread here:
https://anastpaul.com/?s=the+beggars+of+god

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Thought for the Day – 14 January – Those Who Will to be Damned

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

Those Who Will to be Damned

“Only those who will it themselves, are damned.
God wishes all men to be saved.
It was for this, that He came into the world and shed His Precious Blood.
Moreover, He has given us the means necessary for salvation.
“God our Saviour, wishes all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim 2:4).

What can be wanting to us, therefore, in order to obtain salvation?
Divine grace is certainly not lacking, for God gives it to us without reserve.
“I come that they may have life and have it more abundantly” (Jn 10:10).
Nor are we lacking in strength, for, as St Paul says, “I can do all things in him who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13).
We have the Sacraments, good inspirations and the example of the Saints.
All that we can be deficient in, then, is our own goodwill and co-operation with the grace of God.
We must be prepared to play our part in our own salvation.

Our first thought and purpose, therefore, must be our own salvation.
The treasure hidden in a field and the pearl of great price (Cf Mt 13:44-46) are symbols of the Kingdom of God and of everlasting happiness.
We should be prepared to sacrifice everything else, in order to find this treasure an to acquire this pearl!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One here:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/08/27/thought-for-the-day-27-august-those-who-will-to-be-damned/

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD the FATHER, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION

Quote/s of the Day – 13 January – St Hilary

Quote/s of the Day – 13 January – The Memorial of St Hilary of Poitiers (315-368) Father & Doctor of the Church

“He conquered death,
broke the gates of hell,
won for Himself a people
to be His co-heirs,
lifted flesh from corruption
up to the glory of eternity.”

“There is no space where God is not;
space does not exist apart from Him.
He is in heaven, in hell,
beyond the seas;
dwelling in all things and enveloping all.
Thus He embraces
and is embraced by, the universe,
confined to no part of it
but pervading all.”

“The utter folly of our time is lamentable,
that men should think.
to assist God with human help
and to protect the Church of Christ
by worldly ambition.”

“The Son of God is nailed to the Cross
but on the Cross,
God conquers human death.
Christ, the Son of God, dies
but all flesh is made alive in Christ.
The Son of God is in hell
but man is carried back to heaven.”

St Hilary of Poitiers (315-368)
Father & Doctor of the Church

More here:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/01/13/quote-s-of-the-day-13-january-the-memorial-of-st-hilary-of-poitiers-315-368-father-doctor-of-the-church/
And:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/01/13/quote-s-of-the-day-13-january-st-hilary/

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One Minute Reflection – 11 January – “The kingdom of God is at hand ” – Mark 1:15

One Minute Reflection – 11 January – The Sixth Day in the Octave of Epiphany, Readings: Hebrews 1:1-6Psalms 97:1 and 26 and 79Mark 1:14-20

“This is the time of fulfilment. The kingdom of God is at hand ”– Mark 1:15

REFLECTION “After John had been arrested, Jesus came into Galilee ” According to our interpretation, John stands for the Law and Jesus the Gospel. Indeed, John says: “One mightier than I is coming after me …” (Mk 1:7) and elsewhere: “He must increase, I must decrease” (Jn 3:30): in this way he compares the Law with the Gospel. And afterwards he says: “I – that is, the Law – baptise you with water; he – that is the Gospel – will baptise you in the Holy Spirit” (Mk 1:8). And so, Jesus comes because John had been put in prison. In effect, the Law is finished, it has been brought to an end, it no longer has its former freedom. But we have passed from the Law to the Gospel …

“Jesus came to Galilee preaching the Gospel, the Good News of the Kingdom of God” … When I read the Law, prophets and psalms, I never heard them speak of the Kingdom of heaven, only in the gospel. For only when He came, of whom it is said “the Kingdom of God is in your midst” (Lk 17:21) that God’s Kingdom was thrown open … In fact, before the Saviour’s coming and the light of the Gospel, before Christ opened the gates of paradise with the thief (Lk 23:43), all holy souls descended to the place of the dead. Jacob himself said: “I will go down weeping and mourning to the nether world” (Gn 37:35) … In the Law, Abraham rests with the dead; in the Gospel, the thief is in paradise. We are not denigrating Abraham; we all want to rest in his bosom (Lk 16:23) but we prefer Christ to Abraham, the Gospel to the Law.

We read that after Christ’s Resurrection many saints appeared in the holy city (Mt 27:53). Our Lord and Saviour preached on earth and preached, too, to the underworld. He died and descended to hell to free the souls held captive there (1 Pt 3:18f.).” – St Jerome (347-420) Priest, Translator of Sacred Scripture, Father and Doctor of the Church – Homilies on Saint Mark’s Gospel, no.2A ; SC 494

PRAYER – Lord, be the beginning ad the end of all that we are and do and say. Prompty our actions with Your grace and complete them with Your all-powerful help. Let our hearts belong to You alone and make us Your obedient servants. By the intercession of the Blessed Mary our Hope and all the Saints and Angels, we make our prayer through Christ our Lord, amen.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES for the NEW YEAR, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, THE EPIPHANY of the LORD, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The INCARNATION, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 7 January – Shine like that star – St Pope Leo the Great

One Minute Reflection – 7 January – The Second Day within the Octave of Epiphany, Readings: 1 John 3:22 – 4:6, Psalms 2:7-8, 10-12, Matthew 4:12-17, 23-25 and the Memorial of St Raymond of Peñafort (1175-1275) “Father of Canon Law”

“ …the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light and for those, who sat in the region and shadow of death, light has dawned.”…Matthew 4:16

REFLECTION – “All these things we know to have taken place ever since the three wise men, aroused in their far-off land, were led by a star to recognise and worship the King of heaven and earth.
The responsiveness of that star exhorts us to imitate it’s obedience and, as much as we can, to make ourselves servants of that grace which invites us all to Christ.
For, whoever lives religiously and chastely in the Church and “sets his mind on the things which are above, not on the things that are upon the earth” (Col 3:2) resembles that heavenly light in a certain sense.
So long as he maintains in himself the brightness of a holy life, he points out to many, like a star, the way that leads to God.
All having this concern, dearly-beloved… you will shine in the Kingdom like children of light.”… St Pope Leo the Great (400-461) Father & Doctor of the Church

PRAYER – Lord, may the radiance of Your glory, light up our hearts and bring us through the shadows of this world, until we reach our homeland of everlasting light. Grant we pray, that by the intercession of St Raymond of Peñafort , our way may be smoothed and our troubles eased. We ask this through Jesus, our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, 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 for the NEW YEAR, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST

Thought for the Day – 3 January – Following Jesus, the Divine Model

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

Following Jesus, the Divine Model

“Jesus is the Divine Model, Whom we ought to follow and imitate.
In Him, the virtues possess both the infinite splendour of the Divinity and the gentle appeal of glorified Humanity.
Jesus does not dazzle us with His brightness but kindly invites us to love and follow Him.
“Learn from me” He says, “for I am meek and humble of heart and you will find rest for your souls” (Mt 11:29).
After He has indicated humility, meekness and interior peace, as the foundations of the spiritual life, He invites us to take up the yoke of His law and assures us, that we shall find it light (Mt 11).

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

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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One Minute Reflection – 2 January – “Now I begin”…

One Minute Reflection – 2 January – Christmas Weekday and The Memorial of St Basil the Great (329-379) and St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390), Readings: 1 John 2:22-28Psalms 98:12-3,3-4John 1:19-28

He said, “I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.” … 1 John 2:23

REFLECTION“Prepare a way for the Lord.” Brethren, however far you journey along it… from the very nature of goodness, there is no limit to the way along which you travel. And so… the wise and indefatigable traveller… can say to himself each day: “Now I begin”… And how many “go astray in the wilderness”… None of them can yet say: “Now I begin.”

For “the beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord.” If the beginning of wisdom, then surely it is also the beginning of the way of goodness… It is this that encourages praise…, it also moves the proud to penance, so that they hear the voice of him crying in the wilderness, ordering the preparation of the way and thus showing how to begin it: “Do penance for the kingdom of heaven is close at hand”…

If you are on the way, then fear only one thing, lest you leave it, lest you offend the Lord who leads you along it, so that He would abandon you to “wander in the way of your own heart”… If you feel that the way is too narrow look forward to the end to which it leads you. If you were to see how everything is to be attained, then you would say without hesitation: “Broad indeed is your command!” If you cannot see so far, believe Isaiah who could… “Behold,” he says, “the redeemed shall walk by this way and the ransomed of the Lord shall return and come to Sion with singing, everlasting joy shall be upon their heads . They shall obtain also joy and gladness and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.” Those who dwell sufficiently on this end, I think, will not only make the way easier for himself but also grow wings, so that he no longer walks but flies… May He, who is the track of the runners and the reward of the winners, lead and guide you along it – He, Christ Jesus!” … Blessed Guerric of Igny (c 1080-1157) Cistercian Abbot – 5th sermon of Advent, SC 166

PRAYER – Look with favour on our morning prayer, Lord and in Your saving love, let Your light penetrate the wilderness in our hearts. May no sordid desires darken our minds, renewed and enlightened as we are, by Your heavenly grace. God our Father, You enriched Your Church and gave examples for us to follow in the life and teachings of Sts Basil and Gregory. Grant that, learning Your truth with humility, we may practise it in faith and love. Sts Basil and Gregory, pray for our beloved Church, pray for all Catholic Christians, through Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.

Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, DOCTORS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, QUOTES for the NEW YEAR, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, St Louis-Marie Grignion de MONTFORT, The HOLY NAME, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 31 December – Are we Ready? “In God’s Name, let us go on bravely”

Quote/s of the Day – 31 December – The Seventh Day in the Octave of Christmas

Are we Ready?
Will this be another year from hell?

“Brothers, . . . I can only say,
that forgetting all that lies behind me
and straining forward to what lies in front of me,
I am racing towards the finishing-point,
to win the prize of God’s heavenly call
in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 3:13

“My brothers,
Christ made love the stairway
that would enable all Christians
to climb to heaven.
Hold fast to it, therefore,
in all sincerity,
give one another practical proof of it
and by your progress in it,
make your ascent together.”

St Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533)

“Love God,
serve God,
everything is in that.”

St Clare of Assisi (1194-1253)

“In God’s Name, let us go on bravely”

St Joan of Arc (1412-1431)

“Our business is, to gain heaven;
everything else, is a sheer waste of time.”

St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)

“God Alone”

St Louis Marie Grignion de Montfort (1673-1716)

“Let us go forward in peace,
our eyes upon heaven,
the only one goal of our labours.”

St Thérèse of the Child Jesus (1873-1897) Doctor of the Church

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Thought for the Day – 30 December – Following Jesus

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

Following Jesus

“When we have renounced ourselves and have embraced our cross with resignation and love, we must follow Jesus.
We must follow Him in a special way as the infallible Teacher of truth.
The teachings of men cannot satisfy our intellects.
Still less, can they satisfy our hearts.
What they teach is either incomplete or false.
This is proved by the fact that the doctrines of mean have succeeded and replaced one another, down through the centuries while “the word of the Lord endures forever” (1 Peter 1:25).

The teaching of Christ produces an extraordinary renovation in the individual, in the family and in society.
It is this renewal which we call Christianity and Christian civilisation.
There is a wide chasm between paganism and Christianity.
This gulf would be even wider, only for the fact that Christianity has not yet been fully put into practice throughout the universe.
There is only one reform necessary.
This is to realise the Christian ideal everywhere.
We must begin by carrying it out ourselves.
Let us follow Jesus, Who is saying to us: “I am the way and the truth and the life” (Jn 14:6). “He who follows Me does not walk in darkness” (Jn 8:12).

Let us follow our divine Master and we shall be sure that we are travelling towards Heaven!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, I BELIEVE!, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on PEACE, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 29 December – ‘… Our sure tranquillity …’

One Minute Reflection – 29 December – The Fifth Day of the Octave of Christmas, Readings: 1 John 2:3-11Psalms 96:1-22b-35-6Luke 2:22-35 and the Memorial of St Thomas à Becket (1118-1170) Martyr, Archbishop of Canterbury

Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace ”- Luke 2:29

REFLECTION “The kingdom of God is at hand” (Lk 21:31). The kingdom of God, beloved brethren, has begun to be at hand; the reward of life and the joy of eternal salvation and perpetual happiness and the possession of paradise once lost, are now coming with the passing of the world; now the things of heaven are succeeding those of earth; great things, small and eternal things, transitory. What place is there here for anxiety and worry? …

It is written that “the just man lives by faith” (Rm 1:17). If you are just and live by faith, if you truly believe in Jesus Christ, why do you, who are destined to be with Christ and secure in the promise of the Lord, not rejoice that you are called to Christ …? Take the example of Simeon, the just man who was truly just, who with full faith kept the commandments of God – when the answer had been given him from heaven that he would not die before he had seen Christ and when Christ as an infant had come into the temple with His mother, he knew in spirit that Christ was now born, concerning whom it had been foretold to him before and on seeing Him he knew, that he himself would quickly die.

Happy, therefore, at the death that was now at hand and untroubled at the approaching summons, he took the child into his hands and, blessing God, he cried out and said: “Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation.” Thus he proved surely and bore witness, that the servants of God have peace, they have a free and tranquil repose when, on being released from the storms of this world, they have sought the harbour of our final abode and eternal security … For that is our peace, that is our sure tranquillity, that, our steadfast and firm and everlasting security.” – St Cyprian of Carthage (c 200-258) Martyr, Bishop, Church Father – On mortality, 2-3

PRAYER – God our Father, our human nature is the wonderful work of Your hands. Your Son took to Himself our manhood, grant us a share in His Sonship, that as co-heirs with Him, we may strive evermore obediently to gain our final home with the Blessed Virgin and all Your saints. Through Christ, our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God with You now and for evermore, amen.

Posted in MARTYRS, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on TEMPTATION

Thought for the Day – 26 December – St Stephen, the First Martyr

Thought for the Day – 26 December – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

St Stephen, the First Martyr

“Among the original seven Deacons nominated by the Apostles, there was one name Stephen, who was outstanding for his sanctity and extraordinary spiritual gifts.
Being enlightened by God, this young man dared to rebuke the Jews in public for their hardness of heart and openly defended the doctrine of Christ, Whom he proclaimed to be the Saviour and Redeemer of the world.
One day when he was threatened by his foes, Stephen raised his eyes trustfully towards Heaven and said: “Behold, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.”
The Jews could no longer restrain their fury and proceeded to drag the young man outside the city.
There they left their garments in the care of a youth named Saul, while they savagely stoned Stephen to death.
Stricken to his knees by the force of the missiles, the saintly young disciple continued to look towards Heaven.
“Lord Jesus,” he cried, “receive my spirit.”
Before he breathed his last, he forgave his enemies in the manner of his divine Master.
“Lord,” he prayed, “do not lay this sin against them.”
And with these words he fell asleep (Cf Acts 7:51-60; 8:1-2).

Let us admire and imitate the courage of this Martyr.
We may never be called on, to endure a martyrdom of blood on behalf of our faith but, we shall almost certainly be obliged to undergo the martyrdom of the assault of the passions on our purity of soul, or of severe physical or mental suffering…
If we accept these trials from God with perfect resignation and love, they will certainly prove as valuable to us, as real martyrdom.
If we endure them with the courage and fortitude of St Stephen, we shall be rewarded as he was, by seeing Jesus standing at the right hand of God and offering us the palm of victory!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Advent Reflection – 10 December – Let us fulfil what is right and holy!

Advent Reflection – 10 December – Thursday of the Second week of Advent, Readings: Isaiah 41:13-20Psalms 145:1 and 9,10-1112-13Matthew 11:11-15 and the Feast of Our Lady of Loreto

Let us adore the Lord, the king who is to come.

Let all your works give you thanks, O LORD,
and let your faithful ones bless you.
Let them discourse of the glory of your Kingdom
and speak of your might
. – Psalm 145:10-11

REFLECTION – “My children, eternal life is being offered to us, the kingdom of heaven is made ready and Christ’s inheritance awaits us – the enjoyment of innumerable and unimaginable blessings, the happiness of a great joy and of immortality, glory and honour without measure and all the other blessings in such great number, that human language is not sufficient to make known its grace and mercy (cf. Wsd. 3:9)!
So let us run from now on with increased energy and above all you, lazy, recalcitrant, dull of heart, friends of murmuring who, unless you improve, are like the cursed fig tree. We surround it with manure (cf. Lk 13:8) and it takes no root at all, we water you with words and not a bit of growth results! “Even now the ax lies at the root of the trees” (Lk 3:9) and I will silence the rest. Let us seek out the fight, bravely pour with our sweat, adorn ourselves with crowns, gain praises and gather up like a treasure “what eye has not seen, and ear has not heard and what has not entered the human heart” (1 Cor 2:9).

Let us rule our lives by that of our fathers, that which goes back to the origin, let us follow in the footsteps of their virtues, love their upright deeds, make of our way of life an image of their own. (…) Yes, let us work together with them! Let us act with them! Let us follow in their footsteps! Yes! Let us, too, fulfil what is right and holy! In this way we will share in their glory, we will be crowned and, together with them, exult in the kingdom of heaven, in Christ Jesus our Lord, to whom belongs the glory and the power, with the Father and the Holy Spirit, now and for ever. Amen.” – St Theodore the Studite (759-826) Catechesis 72 (from the Great Cathecheses)

PRAYER – O God, You willed that, at the message of an angel, Your word should take flesh in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary; grant to Your suppliant people, that we, who believe her to be truly the Mother of God, may be helped by her intercession with You. Through the same Christ our Lord.

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, ON the SAINTS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HAPPINESS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, SAINT of the DAY, The BEATITUDES, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 1 November – “Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven.” – Matthew 5:12

One Minute Reflection – 1 November – The Solemnity of All Saints, Readings: Revelation 7:2-4, 9-14, Psalms 24:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 1 John 3:1-3, Matthew 5:1-12

“Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven.” – Matthew 5:12

REFLECTION – “Rejoice in the Lord without ceasing (cf. Phil 4:4), my dear children. I beg you rejoice, citizens of heaven but exiles on earth, inhabitants of the Jerusalem on high (cf. Gal 4:26) but banished from affairs here below, inheritors of the kingdom of heaven but disinherited from taking any part at all, in earthly pleasures! Rejoice, ardent travellers, at undergoing exile and maltreatment in a foreign land in the name of the commandment of God! Rejoice, you who are last in this world but lords of blessings that exceed our understanding (cf. Phil 4:7).
Rejoice, noble company, brought together by God, assembly united in heart and soul, who give life to filial and fraternal love, a replica on earth of the host of angels! (…) Rejoice, God’s workers, apostolic men. (…) Rejoice, you who set your joy in each other, each making his own the reputation of his brother, you in whom is found neither jealousy, rivalry nor envy but, in their place, peace and charity and life in common. In truth, I do not say that we are not attacked – indeed, who is crowned if not the one who struggles and fights, who exchanges thrusts and wounds with his assailants? – but I say that we should not let ourselves be brought down by the machinations of Satan.
Yes, my children, assembly of God, nourish yourselves with the food of the Spirit and drink the water given by the Lord: whoever comes to possess this water will never thirst again but it will become, in Him, a spring of living water welling up to eternal life (cf. Jn 4:14). (…) Yet a little while and we shall have vanquished. And blessed shall we be; blessed also, it shall be said, are the places, family and countries that have borne you (cf. Lk 11:27-28).” – St Theodore the Studite (759-826) – Catechesis 47 (The Great Catecheses)

PRAYER – Father, All-Powerful and ever-living God, today we rejoice in the holy men and women of every time and place. May their prayers bring us your forgiveness and love. Blessed Virgin, Mother of God, our trusted guide and loving mother and all you holy Saints of the Church Triumphant, pray for us! We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, in union with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.