Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SIN, The SECOND COMING, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 27 January – ‘… Why must you be salt? …’

One Minute Reflection – 27 January – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Bishop, Confessor, Father and Doctor of the Church “Golden Mouthed.” – 2 Timothy 4:1-8, Matthew 5:13-19 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

“You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.” – Matthew 5:13

REFLECTION – “It is as a matter of absolute necessity that He commands all this. Why must you be salt? Jesus says in effect: “You are accountable, not only for your own life but also, for that of the entire world. I am sending you not to one or two cities, nor to ten or twenty, nor even to one nation, as I sent the Prophets. Rather, I am sending you to the entire earth, across the seas, to the whole world, to a world fallen into an evil state.” For by saying, “You are the salt of the earth,” Jesus signifies, that all human nature itself has “lost its taste,” having become rotten through sin. For this reason, you see, He requires from His disciples, those character traits that are most necessary and useful for the benefit of all.” – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Archbishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor  (The Gospel of Matthew: Homily,15).

PRAYER – May heavenly grace, we beseech Thee, O Lord, prosper Thy Church, which Thou mercifully enlightened by the blessed virtues and teachings of glorious and blessed John Chrysostom, Thy Confessor and Bishop. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CATHOLIC TIME, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on TIME

Thought for the Day – 14 January – The Proper Use of Time

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

The Proper Use of Time

Time is money,” runs an old English proverb.
But, for a Christian, time is something much more important.
It is the price of eternity!

With time well spoent or badly spent, we can purchase a life of eternal happiness with God, or of eternal suffering in hell.
Since our true destiny is God and everlasting happiness, all the time which we spend with this in view, is well spent, whereas, all that is not devoted to this end, is useless or harmful.

We must make a special effort to avoid sloth.
There is good reason for calling it the father of vices.
When a man surrenders to laziness, he is squandering a priceless treasure, which was intended to be used in the service of God and for the sanctification of his own soul and the souls of his fellowmen.
He is also disobeying the clear command which God issued after the sin of Adam: “In the sweat of your brow you shall eat bread” (Gen 3:29).

The man who is steeped in sloth, moreover, is more vulnerable to the temptations of the devil, the suggestions of the flesh and the frivolous attractions of the world.
If our hands are not employed in labour, or our minds occupied in study or prayer, we can easily be diverted from our proper purpose and drawn towards sin.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2022/01/14/thought-for-the-day-14-january-the-proper-use-of-time/

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on HELL

Thought for the Day – 12 January – HELL 2

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

HELL 2

“In that place of never-ending suffering, there will be three punishments to torture us.
There will be the worm of conscience which does not die – “Their worm dies not” (Mk 9:43).
This is the awful realisation that we could have saved ourselves but are lost for all eternity; that God gave us so many graces and we damned ourselves by abusing them.
Now, there is no longer any remedy because the Mercy of God has been succeeded once and for all, by His Justice!

In the second place, there is fire.
This is a real fire but altogether different from the material fire we know in this world which was created by God for our benefit and service.
The fire of hell, on the other hand, was created by Divine Justice, purely to punish us.
It is a special kind of fire which tortures body and soul and the rebel angels, as well as damned human beings.
It could be called, discerning, insofar, as it torments more or less mercilessly, according to the gravity of the sin.
These flames embrace every evil and exclude every good.
They are flames which will never be extinguished, flames which burn but do not consume, flames without light, dark and accompanied by the shrieking of eternal despair.
The very thought of this horrible dungeon of torments should spur us onto begin immediately, a life of virtue and Christian perfection!

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2022/01/12/thought-for-the-day-12-january-hell-1/

Posted in "Follow Me", ADVENT, AUGUSTINIANS OSA, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on WORRY/ANXIETY, The BEATITUDES, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The REDEMPTION, The SECOND COMING, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 1 December – ‘Look up …’

Quote/s of the Day – 1 December – “The Month of the Divine Infancy and the Immaculate Conception” – Romans 13:11-14, Luke 21:25-33 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

When these things begin to come to pass,
look up and lift up your heads
because your redemption is at hand.

Luke 21:28

And do not be afraid of those
who kill the body but cannot kill the soul.
But rather, be afraid of him,
who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Matthew 10:28

Elizabeth says:
‘Blessed are you because you have believed.’
You also are blessed,
because you have heard and believed.
A soul that believes,
both conceives and brings forth
the Word of God
and acknowledges His works.

St Ambrose of Milan (340-397)
Great Latin Father and Doctor of the Church

Wherever you are on earth,
however long you remain on earth,
the Lord is near,
do not be anxious about anything!”

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

He is present to the eyes of the mind,
making Himself seen by those who have a pure heart
and conversing with them.
So pursue your path ….
Do not hinder the Lord’s narrow way
with your dragging feet.
Hitch up your garment and be ready for action,
look up and do not burden yourself
with those oppressive loads
which are your evil desires.
For anyone who is accomplishing
the journey from earth to Heaven,
it is enough to diligently pursue one’s path
without assuming extra weight. …

St Theodore the Studite (759-826)
Monk and Theologian at Constantinople

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on THE VOICE OF GOD, SAINT of the DAY, The GOOD SHEPHERD, The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 14 November – Do you listen attentively to the Voice of the Good Shepherd and obey His Word?

One Minute Reflection – 14 November – St Josaphat Kuncewicz OSBM (1584-1623) Confessor, Archbishop, Martyr – Hebrews 5:1-6, John 10:11-16 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

I am the good shepherd and I know mine and mine know me.”- John 10:14

REFLECTION – “He shows in what manner a shepherd may be proved good and, He teaches that, he must be prepared to give up his life, fighting in defence of his sheep, which was fulfilled in Christ. For man has departed from the love of God and fallen into sin and because of this was, I say, excluded from the divine abode of paradise. And when he was weakened by that disaster, he yielded to the devil tempting him to sin and death, following that sin, he became the prey of fierce and ravenous wolves. But after Christ was announced as the True Shepherd of all men, He laid down His life for us (1 John 3:16), fighting for us against that pack of inhuman beasts. He bore the Cross for us that by His own death, He might destroy death. He was condemned for us that He might deliver all of us, from the sentence of punishment: the tyranny of sin being overthrown by our faith: fastening to the Cross, the decree that stood against us, as it is written (Colossians 2:14).

Therefore, as the father of sin had, as it were, shut up the sheep in hell, giving them to death to feed on, as it is written in the Psalms (Ps. Xlviii.16), He died for us, as truly Good and truly our Shepherd, so that the dark shadow of death is driven away, He might join us to the company of the blessed in Heaven and, in exchange for abodes, which lie far in the depths of the pit … grants us mansions in His Father’s House above. Because of this, He says to us in another place: Fear not, little flock, for it has pleased your Father to give you a Kingdom (Luke 12:32). Do you listen attentively to the Voice of the Good Shepherd and obey His Word? – ” – St Cyril of Alexander (376-444) Known as “The Pillar of Faith” Archbishop of Alexandria, Father and Doctor of the Church. (Commentary on the Good Shepherd).

PRAYER – Arouse in Thy Church, O Lord, the spirit with which blessed Josaphat, Thy Martyr and Bishop, was filled, when he laid down his life for his flock; so that, by his intercession, we, also moved and strengthened by the same spirit, may not fear to lay down our lives for our brethren. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in ArchAngels and Angels, DOCTORS of the Church, FRANCISCAN OFM, JESUIT SJ, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HELL, REDEMPTORISTS CSSR

Quote/s of the Day – 2 November – This death …

Quote/s of the Day – 2 November – All Souls Day – “The Month of the Holy Souls in Purgatory”

Remember, when you
leave this earth,
you can take nothing with you,
which you have received,
only that, which you have given.

St Francis of Assisi (c 1181–1226)

This death … has already levelled
his bow to strike me.
Is it not prudent to prevent its stroke,
by dying now to the world,
that at my death,
I may live to God?

St Francis Borgia (1510-1572)

It seems to me, my daughters,
that everything passes so quickly
that we should be thinking more,
about how to die,
than how to live!

St Teresa of Jesus of Avila (1515-1582)
Doctor of the Church

The powers of hell
will assail the dying Christian
but his Angel Guardian
will come to console him.
His Patrons and St Michael,
who has been appointed by God
to defend his faithful servants,
in their last combat with the devils,
will come to his aid
.”

St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787)
Most Zealous Doctor

It is not Death that will come to fetch me,
it is the good God.
Death is no phantom, no horrible specter,
as presented in pictures.
In the catechism it is stated,
that death is the separation of soul and body, that is all!
Well, I am not afraid of a separation
which will unite me to the good God forever.

St Thérèse of the Child Jesus
and the Holy Face (1873 – 1897)

Prayer for a Holy Death
By St Alphonsus de Liguori (1696-1787)

Most Zealous Doctor

My beloved Jesus,
I will not refuse the cross,
as the Cyrenian did;
I accept it, I embrace it.
I accept, in particular,
the death Thou hast destined for me,
with all the pains which may accompany it;
I unite it to Thy Death,
I offer it to Thee
Thou hast died for love of me; I
will die for love of Thee
and to please Thee.
Help me by Thy grace.
I love Thee, Jesus, my love;
I repent of ever having offended Thee.
Never permit me to offend Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always
and then do with me what Thou will.
Amen

MORE:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/11/02/quote-s-of-the-day-2-november-death-is-then-no-cause-for-mourning/

Posted in DIVINE MERCY, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The LORD'S PRAYER

Thought for the Day – 26 October – “Deliver Us From Evil”

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

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
“Deliver Us From Evil”

“Deliver us, O God, from the evil of eternal damnation.
Sin is the greatest evil but, as long as we are on earth, it is an evil which can still be remedied, for God, in His Infinite Mercy, is always ready to forgive and to restore us to His divine friendship, if we sincerely repent.
In Hell, however, there is no further remedy, for there, the Mercy of God has been superseded by His Infinite Justice.
Where the tree falls, there it must lie forever.
Such dreadful unhappiness is barely conceivable!

Deliver us from sin, O God, deliver us from a bad death, deliver us from Hell.
Help us to love You more and more and to serve You more faithfully, so that we may one day enjoy Your blessed company, for all eternity.
Amen.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/10/25/thought-for-the-day-25-october-deliver-us-from-evil/
PART TWO:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/10/26/thought-for-the-day-26-october-deliver-us-from-evil/

Posted in "Follow Me", CARMELITES, DOCTORS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, PATRONAGE - HEADACHES, PATRONAGE - THE SICK, THE INFIRM, ALL ILLNESS, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on THANKSGIVING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 15 October – St Teresa of Jesus

Saint of the Day – 15 October – St Teresa of Jesus of Avila OCD (1515-1582) Virgin and Doctor of the Church

Practical Considerations
On the Life of Saint Teresa
By Fr Francis Xavier Weninger SJ (1805-1888)

I. Teresa began in early youth, after the teachings of her pious parents, to read devout books. From this, she first drew the spirit of piety. No sooner, however, had she become interested in reading worldly books, than she grew, from day-to-day, more indolent in the service of God and she returned, not to her first fervour, until she had cast aside those works and again resumed her pious reading – a proof of the great benefit we may derive from devout books and of the harm which worldly writings may do us.
Oh! that those, who desire to, live piously, may understand this and conform their lives to it.
Oh! that all Christians would guide their children, from their early youth, to the reading of devout books!

II. Teresa, after the death of her mother, chose the Blessed Virgin to be another mother to her, and sought and found, in her, comfort and assistance in all her needs. Thrugh her intercession and that of St Joseph, she received the grace of being constant in her reform.
Love Mary as your mother – seek, with filial trust, consolation and assistance from her.
St Joseph should be one of your principal Patrons, as his intercession is very powerful with the Almighty and, especially, as he has now been solemnly declared the Patron Saint of the Universal Church.

III. The sight of the wounded Jesus, filled the heart of St Teresa with great contrition for her former indifferent life. It inflamed her with true love of God and kept her, until her end, in these sentiments. Consider frequently how your Saviour suffered for your sake and repent of your sins sincerely, as they were the cause of Christ’s bitter Passion.
Love your Redeemer with all the strength of your heart and make the resolution to serve Him in future most fervently.

IV. Teresa saw the place in hell which would have been hers, if she had not discontinued her idle discourses and her indifference in the worship of the Most High. Hence, she often gave humble thanks to God that He had not condemned her and she learned, by it, how hurtful even a menial sin can become, since it may lead us gradually to the path of everlasting perdition.
You have still more reason to give thanks to God that He did not call you away, from this mortal life, in your sin.
How long would you already have been in hell?
If idle, empty conversation would have led Teresa gradually into hell, what may you not have to fear, if you do not abstain from so much sinful talking, in which you indulge?
Learn also that you should not esteem a venial sin, however small it appears to you, as trifling, for, it may slowly lead you to damnation!

V. Many other lessons, which the life of St Teresa contains, I leave to yourself to consider. One thing only I request of you. Call to mind frequently the words which the Saint uttered in her ecstasy:
Only one God!
Only one death!
Only one soul!
Love this only God and do not offend Him.
Take earnest care of your only, your precious, your immortal soul. ‘Keep thyself, therefore and thy soul, carefully
.’ (Deut., iv.)”

Posted in AUGUSTINIANS OSA, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 5 October – ‘ … The body is dead without the soul and the soul is dead without God. … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 5 October – “The Month of the Most Holy Rosary and of the Angels” – Hebrews 10:32-38, Luke 12:1-8 – Scripture search https://www.drbo.org/

“Do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do. … be afraid of him who, after he has killed, has power to cast into hell. ” – Luke 12:4-5

REFLECTION – “The Gospel is life. Impiety and infidelity are the death of the soul. So then, if the soul can die, how then is it yet immortal? Because, there is always a dimension of life in the soul which can never be extinguished. And how does it die? Not in ceasing to be life but by losing its proper life. For the soul is both life to something else and it has it own proper life. Consider the order of the creatures. The soul is the life of the body. God is the life of the soul. As the life that is the soul, is present with the body, that the body may not die, so the life of the soul (God), ought to be with the soul that it may not die.

How does the body die? By the departure of the soul. I say, by the departure of the soul, the body dies and it lies there as a mere carcass, what was a little before, a lively, not a contemptible object. There are in it still, its several members, the eyes and ears. But these are merely the windows of the house – its inhabitant is gone. Those who bewail the dead, cry in vain at the windows of the house. There is no-one there within it to hear. Why is the body dead? Because the soul, its life, is gone. But at what point is the soul itself dead? When God, its life, has forsaken it. This then we can know and hold for certain – the body is dead without the soul and the soul is dead without God. Everyone without God has a dead soul. You who bewail the dead rather, should bewail sin! Bewail ungodliness! Bewail disbelief.! – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon 65).

PRAYER – Grant, we beseech Thee, O Lord God, unto all Thy servants, that they may remain continually in the enjoyment of soundness, both of mind and body and by the glorious intercession of the Blessed Mary, always a Virgin, maybe delivered from present sadness and enter into the joy of Thine eternal gladness. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

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

Thought for the Day – 24 September – Fundamental Facts

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

Fundamental Facts

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

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

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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

Posted in AUGUSTINIANS OSA, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on HELL, Quotes on SALVATION, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL

Thought for the Day – 20 August – Those Who Will to be Damned

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

Those Who Will to be Damned

We cannot claim that we are too weak to fight our temptations.
God is faithful and will not permit you to be tempted beyond your strength” (1 Cor 10:13).

Neither can we complain that we have not enough time to think about such matters, for when God gave us time, He intended us to devote it principally to the solution of the most important problem in our lives, which is, our salvation!
It is futile to insist that the devil is too strong for us, for, to quote St Augustine, he is like a chained mastiff which can bark at us with all his might but, cannot bite us, unless we approach too close to him.

We have been given every weapon – there is no excuse!

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/08/27/thought-for-the-day-27-august-those-who-will-to-be-damned/
PART TWO:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/01/14/thought-for-the-day-14-january-those-who-will-to-be-damned/

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SIN, The SECOND COMING, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 20 August – The least in the Kingdom of Heaven – Matthew 5:19

One Minute Reflection – 20August – “The Month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary” and the Memorial of St Bernard (1090-1153) Confessor – Ecclesiasticus 39:6-14, Matthew 5:13-19

“Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do so, will be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments, will be called greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.” – Matthew 5:19

REFLECTION – “For what reason then does He call some of these commandments “least,” although they are so magnificent and lofty? Jesus spoke this way because He was about to introduce His own teaching, as a new law . As He humbles Himself and speaks of Himself with great modesty, so He refers to His own teaching in the same manner. In this way, Jesus teaches us to practice humility in everything. And besides, since some suspected His teaching to be a new departure, He temporarily taught it in a more reserved way.

But when you hear “least in the Kingdom of Heaven,” you are to think of nothing but hell and punishment. For it was His practice to speak, not only of the joy the Kingdom brings but also, of the time of the resurrection and the fearful event of the Second Coming.

Think of one who calls a brother a fool. That one, transgresses only one commandment, maybe even the slightest one and falls into hell. Compare that one with another, who breaks all the commandments and instigates others to break them too. Do both have the same relationship to the Kingdom? This is not the argument Jesus is making. Rather, He means, that one who transgresses only one of the commands will, on the final day, be the least—that is, cast out—and last and will fall into hell!” – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Archbishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church (The Gospel of Saint Matthew, Homily 16).

PRAYER – O God, Who gave to Thy people, blessed Bernard, as a minister of salvation, grant, we beseech Thee, that we, who cherished him on earth as a teacher of life, may be found worthy to have him as an intercessor in Heaven.Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in AUGUSTINIANS OSA, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 27 July – ‘ … The body is dead without the soul and the soul is dead without God. … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 27 July – “The Month of the Precious Blood” – The Memorial of St Pantaleon (Died c 305) Martyr, Lay Physician, one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers – 2 Tim. 2:8-10; 3:10-12, Matthew 10:26-32

And do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather, be afraid of him, who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” – Matthew 10:28

REFLECTION – “The Gospel is life. Impiety and infidelity are the death of the soul. So then, if the soul can die, how then is it yet immortal? Because, there is always a dimension of life in the soul which can never be extinguished. And how does it die? Not in ceasing to be life but by losing its proper life. For the soul is both life to something else and it has it own proper life. Consider the order of the creatures. The soul is the life of the body. God is the life of the soul. As the life that is the soul, is present with the body, that the body may not die, so the life of the soul (God), ought to be with the soul that it may not die.

How does the body die? By the departure of the soul. I say, by the departure of the soul, the body dies and it lies there as a mere carcass, what was a little before, a lively, not a contemptible object. There are in it still, its several members, the eyes and ears. But these are merely the windows of the house – its inhabitant is gone. Those who bewail the dead, cry in vain at the windows of the house. There is no-one there within it to hear. Why is the body dead? Because the soul, its life, is gone. But at what point is the soul itself dead? When God, its life, has forsaken it. This then we can know and hold for certain – the body is dead without the soul and the soul is dead without God. Everyone without God has a dead soul. You who bewail the dead rather, should bewail sin! Bewail ungodliness! Bewail disbelief.! – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon 65).

PRAYER – Grant, we beseech Thee, Almighty God, that through the intercession of Thy blessed Martyr Pantaleon, we may be delivered from all afflictions of the body and cleansed from all evil thoughts of the mind. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MEDIOCRITY, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SACRIFICE

Thought for the Day – 20 July – Our Passions

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

Our Passions

It is a difficult thing to control and to direct our natural inclinations.
It requires perseverance, sacrifice and the grace of God, for which we should always pray.

Often, this struggle will last a lifetime and we can still fall, even after many years of combat.
It is important, however, never to give up.
If we accept defeat and quietly submit to the tyranny of sinful passions, we are lost forever.
It is a poor outlook too, for a Catholic who ends up by being satisfied with a life of worthless mediocrity.
We must fight hard, pray fervently and value nothing higher than the love of Christ.
When we are finally victorious, our joy will be greater than any happiness which the world can give.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/07/18/thought-for-the-day-18-july-our-passions/

Posted in AUGUSTINIANS OSA, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, MARTYRS, OUR Cross, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES on BAD CONVERSATION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on HERESY, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE WORLD, QUOTES on UNITY/with GOD, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The PASSION

Quote/s of the Day – 11 July – Martyrs

Quote/s of the Day – 11 July – “The Month of the Precious Blood” – The Memorial of St Anacletus (c25-c89) 3rd Bishop of Rome and Martyr

There are also some among the heretics who …
flatter themselves with claims of martyrdom …
But not all ,who submit their bodies to suffering,
even to flames, are to be considered
as having as having shed their blood for their sheep;
rather, they may have shed it
against the salvation of their sheep,
for the Apostle says:
“If I should deliver my body to be burned
and have not charity, it profits me nothing”
(1 Corinthians 13:3).
And how can he have
the faintest charity in him
who, although shown to be at fault,
yet has no love for that unity
which the Lord chose to recommend?
Indeed, so long as you remain
outside the Church
and severed from the fabric of unity
and bond of charity,
you will be punished
with everlasting chastisement,
even if you were burned alive
for the sake of Christ

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

Without the Cup of the Lord
preserving the holy bond of love,
even if a man should deliver his body
to be burned, he gains nothing!

St Fulgentus of Ruspe (c 462 – 533)

The prayer below, was written by Saint Thomas More while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London, awaiting execution by King Henry VIII.

Give Me Thy Grace, Good Lord!
A Prayer of Hope
By St Thomas More (1478-1535)

Give me Thy grace, good Lord.
To set the world at naught.
To set the mind firmly on Thee
and not to hang upon the words of men’s mouths.
To be content to be solitary.
Not to long for worldly pleasures.
Little by little, utterly to cast off the world
and rid my mind of all its business.
Not to long to hear of earthly things
but that the hearing of worldly fancies,
may be displeasing to me.
Gladly to be thinking of God,
piteously to call for His help.
To lean into the comfort of God.
Busily to labour to love Him.
To know mine own vileness and wretchedness.
To humble myself under the mighty Hand of God.
To bewail my sins past,
for the purging of them,
patiently to suffer adversity.
Gladly to bear my purgatory here.
To be joyful in tribulations.
To walk the narrow way that leads to life.
To bear the Cross with Christ.
To have the last thing in remembrance.
To have ever before mine eyes,
my death that is ever at hand.
To make death no stranger to me.
To foresee and consider,
the everlasting fire of Hell.
To pray for pardon before the Judge come.
To have continually in mind,
the Passion that Christ suffered for me.
For His benefits, unceasingly to give Him thanks.
To buy the time again, that I before have lost.
To abstain from vain conversations.
To shun foolish mirth and gladness.
To cut off unnecessary recreations.
Of worldly substance,
friends, liberty, life and all,
to set the loss at naught,
for the winning of Christ.
To think my worst enemies, my best friends,
for the brethren of Joseph
could never have done him
so much good with their love and favour,
as they did him, with their malice and hatred.
These minds are more to be desired of every man,
than all the treasures of all the princes and kings,
Christian and heathen,
were it gathered and laid together,
all in one heap.
Amen

Posted in "Follow Me", MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on SANCTITY, The WILL of GOD

Thought for the Day – 20 May – Mary, the Source of Holiness

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

Mary, the Source of Holiness

Since we are Mary’s children, we should try and reproduce her holiness in ourselves.
Although, it is higher than that of the Angels, her sanctity is easy to imitate.
There is no record that she ever had ecstasies or worked miracles.
Her’s was a perfect internal sanctity, consisting of total conformity with the Will of God and an intense love for Him.

We must aspire to this kind of holiness and model our lives upon it.
There is no point in arguing that it is sufficient to be good Catholics and, that it is not necessary to be holy.
A Catholic, to be truly such, MUST be holy!

St Paul referred to the early faithful as saints (Eph 1:1).
You are a chosen race,” said St Peter, “a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a purchased people,” (1 Peter 1:16, Lev 11:44)
You are to be perfect,” Jesus Himself had commanded, “even as your heavenly Father is perfect,” (Mt 5:48),
This was the reason, He indicated why He had come into the world – “that they may have life and have it more abundantly” (Jn 10:10).
This is the purpose of the Gospel and this must be the purpose of our lives.

Some day, we shall either be holy in Heaven, or we shall be damned.
We shall either be saints in Heaven or condemned forever in Hell.
This truth merits careful though – everything else is passing but this is something which will never pass away.
This command to sanctify ourselves is a reality which is present at every moment of our lives.
Let us do our best to obey it, at any cost!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/05/20/thought-for-the-day-20-may-mary-the-source-of-holiness-2/

Posted in "Follow Me", AUGUSTINIANS OSA, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, JESUIT SJ, QUOTES on BLASPHEMY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CHURCH, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The LAST THINGS, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 19 May – The Church

Quote/s of the Day – 19 May – The Memorial of St Peter Celestine (1210-1296) Pope and Confessor – 1 Peter 5:1-4; 5:10-11, Matthew 16:13-19

Upon this rock I will build My Church
and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

Matthew 16:18

Of one Bread did both Peter and Judas partake
and yet, what communion had the believer
with the infidel?
Peter’s partaking was unto life
but that of Judas, unto death.
For that good Bread
was just like the sweet savour.
For as the sweet savour,
so also does the good Bread
give life to the good
and bring death to the wicked.
“For he that eateth unworthily,
eateth and drinketh judgement to himself:” –
judgement to himself,” not to thee.
If, then, it is judgement to himself, not to thee,
bear as one that is good,
with him that is evil,
that you may attain the rewards
of the good,and be not hurled
into the punishment of the wicked.

People who associate the name of Christian
with a dishonest life, injure Christ! …
If God’s Name, is blasphemed by bad Christians,
it is praised and honoured,
on the other hand,
by the good:
“For in every place, we are the aroma of Christ”
(2 Cor,14-15).
And it is said in the Song of Songs:
“Your name is oil poured out” (1,3).

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

(On John 12:1-9 Monday of Holy Week).

Better that only a few Catholics
should be left,
staunch and sincere in their religion,
than that they should,
remaining many,
desire as it were,
to be in collusion
with the Church’s enemies
and in conformity with the open foes
of our faith.

St Peter Canisius (1521-1397)
Doctor of the Church

The path to Heaven is narrow,
rough and full of wearisome
and trying ascents,
nor can it be trodden without great toil
and, therefore, wrong is their way,
gross their error
and assured their ruin,
who, after the testimony
of so many thousands of Saints,
will not learn where to settle their footing!

St Robert Southwell SJ (1561-1595)
Priest and Martyr

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SIN, SAINT of the DAY, The KINGDOM of GOD, The LAST THINGS, The SECOND COMING, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 13 May – The least in the Kingdom of Heaven.

One Minute Reflection – 13 May – The Memorial of St Robert Bellarmine SJ (1542-1621) Bishop, Confessor, Doctor of the Church – Wisdom 7:7-14, Matthew 5:13-19

“Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do so, will be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments, will be called greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.” – Matthew 5:19

REFLECTION – “For what reason then does He call some of these commandments “least,” although they are so magnificent and lofty? Jesus spoke this way because He was about to introduce His own teaching, as a new law . As He humbles Himself and speaks of Himself with great modesty, so He refers to His own teaching in the same manner. In this way, Jesus teaches us to practice humility in everything. And besides, since some suspected His teaching to be a new departure, He temporarily taught it in a more reserved way.

But when you hear “least in the Kingdom of Heaven,” you are to think of nothing but hell and punishment. For it was His practice to speak, not only of the joy the Kingdom brings but also, of the time of the resurrection and the fearful event of the Second Coming.

Think of one who calls a brother a fool. That one, transgresses only one commandment, maybe even the slightest one and falls into hell. Compare that one with another, who breaks all the commandments and instigates others to break them too. Do both have the same relationship to the Kingdom? This is not the argument Jesus is making. Rather, He means, that one who transgresses only one of the commands will, on the final day, be the least—that is, cast out—and last and will fall into hell!” – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Archbishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church (The Gospel of Saint Matthew, Homily 16).

PRAYER – O God, Who endowed blessed Robert, Your Bishop and Doctor, with wondrous learning and virtue to repel the deceits of error and to defend the rights of the Apostolic See, grant, by his merits and intercession, that we may ever grow in love of truth and that the hearts of the erring may return to the unity of Your Church. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on SIN, SAINT of the DAY, The SECOND COMING

One Minute Reflection – 27 April – The least in the Kingdom of Heaven – Matthew 5:19

One Minute Reflection – 27 April – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius SJ (1521-1397) Confessor, Doctor of the Church and St Peter Armengol OdeM (c 1238-1304) – 2 Timothy 4:1-8, Matthew 5:13-19

“Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do so, will be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments, will be called greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.” – Matthew 5:19

REFLECTION – “For what reason then does He call some of these commandments “least,” although they are so magnificent and lofty? Jesus spoke this way because He was about to introduce His own teaching, as a new law . As He humbles Himself and speaks of Himself with great modesty, so He refers to His own teaching in the same manner. In this way, Jesus teaches us to practice humility in everything. And besides, since some suspected His teaching to be a new departure, He temporarily taught it in a more reserved way.

But when you hear “least in the Kingdom of Heaven,” you are to think of nothing but hell and punishment. For it was His practice to speak, not only of the joy the Kingdom brings but also, of the time of the resurrection and the fearful event of the Second Coming.

Think of one who calls a brother a fool. That one, transgresses only one commandment, maybe even the slightest one and falls into hell. Compare that one with another, who breaks all the commandments and instigates others to break them too. Do both have the same relationship to the Kingdom? This is not the argument Jesus is making. Rather, He means, that one who transgresses only one of the commands will, on the final day, be the least—that is, cast out—and last and will fall into hell!” – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Archbishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church (The Gospel of Saint Matthew, Homily 16).

PRAYER – God, Who didst give strength and learning to blessed Peter Thy Confessor for the defence of the Catholic faith, mercifully grant, that by his example and teaching, the erring may be saved and the faithful remain constant in the confession of truth. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, GOD is LOVE, HOLY SATURDAY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, Quotes on SALVATION, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The KINGDOM of GOD, The LAST THINGS, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION

Holy Saturday – 16 April – The Lord Descends into Hell

Holy Saturday (Vigil Mass of Easter) – 16 April – Matthew 28:1-7

When Christ should appear, Who is your Life, then you also shall appear with Him, in glory.” Colossians 3:4

“And at the end of the Sabbath,
when it began to dawn
toward the first day of the week,
came Mary Magdalen
and the other Mary,
to see the sepulchre
.”

Matthew 28:1

Ancient Christian Writer
Anonymous
(An excerpt from Homily on Holy Saturday)

The Lord Descends into Hell

SOMETHING STRANGE IS HAPPENING — there is a great silence on earth today, a great silence and stillness. The whole earth keeps silence because the King is asleep. The earth trembled and is still because God has fallen asleep in the flesh and He has raised up all who have slept even since the world began. God has Died in the Flesh and hell trembles with fear!

HE HAS GONE TO SEARCH for our first parent, as for a lost sheep. Greatly desiring to visit those who live in darkness and in the shadow of death, He has gone to free from sorrow, the captives Adam and Eve, He Who is both God and the Son of Eve. The Lord approached them bearing the Cross, the Weapon that had won Him the Victory. At the sight of Him, Adam, the first man He had created, struck His breast in terror and cried out to everyone: “My Lord be with you all.” Christ answered him: “And with your spirit.” He took him by the hand and raised him up, saying: “Awake, O sleeper and rise from the dead and Christ will give you light.”

I AM YOUR GOD, Who, for your sake, have become your Son! Out of love for you and for your descendants, I now by My Own Authority, command all who are held in bondage to come forth, all who are in darkness, to be enlightened, all who are sleeping to arise. I order you, O sleeper, to awake. I did not create you to be held a prisoner in hell. Rise from the dead, for I am the Life of the dead. Rise up, work of my hands, you who were created in My image. Rise, let us leave this place, for you are in Me and I Am in you; together, we form only one person and we cannot be separated.

FOR YOUR SAKE I, your God, became your Son; I, the Lord, took the form of a slave; I, Whose home is above the heavens, descended to the earth and beneath the earth. For your sake, for the sake of man, I became like a man without help, free among the dead. For the sake of you, who left a garden, I was betrayed to the Jews in a garden and I was Crucified in a garden.

SEE ON MY FACE the spittle I received in order to restore to you the life I once breathed into you. See there the marks of the blows I received in order to refashion your warped nature in My Image. On My Back see the marks of the scourging I endured, to remove the burden of sin that weighs upon your back. See My Hands, nailed firmly to a tree, for you who once wickedly stretched out your hand to a tree.

I SLEPT ON THE CROSS and a sword pierced My Side for you who slept in paradise and brought forth Eve from your side. My Side has healed the pain in yours. My Sleep will rouse you from your sleep in hell. The sword that pierced Me has sheathed the sword that was turned against you.

RISE, LET US LEAVE THIS PLACE.
The enemy led you out of the earthly paradise. I will not restore you to that paradise but I will enthrone you in Heaven. I forbade you the tree that was only a symbol of life but see, I Who am Life itself, am now one with you. I appointed cherubim to guard you as slaves are guarded but now I make them worship you as God. The throne formed by cherubim awaits you, its bearers swift and eager. The bridal chamber is adorned, the banquet is ready, the eternal dwelling places are prepared, the treasure houses of all good things lie open. The Kingdom of Heaven has been prepared for you from all eternity!

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on GREED, WEALTH, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS

Thought for the Day – 8 April – The Betrayal of Judas

Thought for the Day – 8 April – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Betrayal of Judas

“It is quite certain, that Judas did not commit this sacrilegious act of betrayal on the spur of the moment.
Evil, like goodness, is arrived at step-by-step.
Perhaps it was some motive of self-interest, rather than of pure love, which led Judas to become one of Jesus; Apostles.
Covetousness, “the root of all evils,” (Cf 1 Tim 6:10) seems to have been his dominant passion.
As the Gospel tells us, he kep the money offerings which those who had been converted, gave to Jesus for His support and for that of His Apostles.
Judas did not know how to suppress his dominant passion at times.
On one occasion, he complained about Mary Magdalen, when she anointed the feet of Jesus with precious ointment.
The passion grew and he became a thief, “He was a thief and holding the purse used to take what was put in it” (Jn 12:6).
In spite of the extraordinary grace he had received, he fell into sin.
Finally, he was guilty of the betrayal, of the sacrilegious communion at the last supper and of the kiss of hypocrisy in Gethsemane.

The example of Judas is a lesson to us.
It is disastrous to begin to yield to our passions and to fall into evil habits.
The Holy Spirit warns us that anyone who makes little account of small things, will fall into bigger (Cf Ecclus 19:11).

Let us remember, that even a tiny spark can set off a conflagration.
Likewise, a single mortal sin can lead us to Hell!

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/04/09/thought-for-the-day-9-april-the-betrayal-of-judas/

Posted in CATHOLIC TIME, CHRIST the KING, GOD ALONE!, GOD is LOVE, JESUIT SJ, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The PASSION

Our Morning Offering – 1 April – My God, I Love Thee

Our Morning Offering – 1 April – Friday of the Fourth Week of Lent

My God, I Love Thee
By St Francis Xavier (1506-1552) (Attri)
Transr: Fr Edward Caswall CO (1814-1878)

My God, I love Thee, not because
I hope for heav’n thereby,
nor yet for fear, that loving not,
I might forever die
but for that Thou didst all mankind
upon the Cross embrace;
for us didst bear the nails and spear
and manifold disgrace.

And griefs and torments numberless
and sweat of agony;
e’en death itself and all for man,
who was Thine enemy.
Then why, most loving Jesus Christ,
should I not love Thee well?
Not for the sake of winning heav’n,
nor any fear of hell.

Not with the hope of gaining aught,
nor seeking a reward
but as Thyself hast loved me,
O ever loving Lord!
E’en so I love Thee and will love
and in Thy praise will sing,
solely because Thou art my God
and my eternal King!
Amen

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL

Thought for the Day – 26 March – The Human Soul

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

The Human Soul

Remember that every mortal sin means death to the soul, for it robs it of the supernatural life of grace, making it incapable of every good action and deserving of hell.
If you committed one mortal sin, God could tire of you, as if you were an unproductive tree and put an end to your life, without giving you time to repent!
Then, you would be lost for all eternity.
This thought should never leave your mind, particularly in time of temptation.
At such a time, turn to God with confidence, tell Him that you love Him and do not wish to offend Him at any price.
Face death rather than sin.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/03/27/thought-for-the-day-27-march-the-human-soul/
PART TWO:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/02/10/thought-for-the-day-27-march-the-human-soul-2/

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, GOD ALONE!, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GOOD WORKS, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 21 March – St Benedict

Quote/s of the Day – 21 March – Monday of the Third Week of Lent – The Memorial of St Benedict OSB (c 480-547)

Girded with faith
and the performance of good works,
let us follow in His paths
by the guidance of the Gospel.

There exists an evil fervour,
a bitter spirit, which divides us from God
and leads us to hell.
Similarly, there is a good fervour,
which sets us apart from evil inclinations
and leads us toward God and eternal life.

For at all times, we must so serve Him,
with the good things He has given us,
that he may not, as an angry Father,
disinherit his children,
nor as a dread Lord,
provoked by our evil deeds,
deliver us to everlasting punishment,
as wicked servants,
who refuse to follow Him to glory
.”

“The first degree of humility,
is prompt obedience.

MORE:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/07/11/quote-s-of-the-day-11-july-st-benedict/
AND:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/07/11/quote-s-of-the-day-11-july-st-benedict-2/

St Benedict (c 480-547)

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on POVERTY, The LAST THINGS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 7 March – Do you suppose that charity is not an obligation but voluntary?

One Minute Reflection – 7 March – Monday of the First Week of Lent – Ezech 34:11-16, Matt hew 25:31-46 and the Memorial of St Thomas Aquinas OP (1225-1274) Doctor Angelicus and Doctor Communis

Amen I say to you, as long as you did not do it for one of these least ones, you did not do it for Me.” – Matthew 25:45

REFLECTION –Do you suppose that charity is not an obligation but voluntary? That it is not a law but merely a counsel? I should like it to be so, too and would gladly think so. But God’s left hand gives me cause for alarm, the place where He has set the goats to whom He addresses His reproaches, not because they stole, plundered, committed adultery or perpetrated other such faults but because, they did not honour Christ in the person of His poor!

If you are willing to listen to me, then, O servants of Christ, His brothers and co-heirs, I say ,that we should visit Christ while there is an opportunity, take care of Him and feed Him. We should clothe Christ and welcome Him. We should honour Him, not only at our table, like some; not only with ointments, like Mary Magdalene; not only with a sepulchre, like Joseph of Arimathea; nor with things which have to do with His burial, like Nicodemus… nor finally, with gold, incense and myrrh, like the Magi.

But, as the Lord of all “desires mercy and not sacrifice” (Mt 9,13) and as compassion is better than tens of thousands of fat rams, let us offer Him this mercy through the needy and those who are at present cast down to the ground. Let us do this, so that, when we depart hence, they may “welcome us into the eternal habitations” (Lk 16,9), in the same Christ our Lord, to whom be glory forever.” – St Gregory Nazianzen (330-390) Archbishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon 14, on Love for the Poor, 27, 28, 39-40).

PRAYER – O God, our Saviour, direct our minds by Your heavenly teaching, so that the Lenten fast may profit us. And may the intercession of St Thomas Aquinas, Your humble servant, aid us in our need. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. R. Amen.

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE

Thought for the Day – 25 February – Fervour and Tepidity

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

Fervour and Tepidity

The ONLY choice in the life of a Catholic is between fervour and sin!
The tepid or negligent soul cannot remain long in the grace of God and, when God’s grace is removed, it means the death of the soul.

The spiritual life resembles a steep hill.
A man cannot stay still.
He must keep going upwards or begin to slip downwards.

Whoever struggles on, up the hill is approaching perfection and Heaven; whoever slips backwards, is approaching sin, a dead soul and Hell.

There us NO MIDDLE WAY!
Those who are lukewarm are an object of DISGUST to their Creator, Who casts them away from Himself – “Because thou art lukewarm and neither cold nor hot,” the Holy Spirit says, “I am about to vomit thee out of my mouth” (Apoc 3:16).

So, it is not enough to be mediocre Catholic.
The half-hearted and indifferent are already travelling along the slippery path of sin and are on the waiting list for hell!
It is dangerous for anyone to remain thoughtlessly in this state of spiritude ineptitude.
A man who never thinks of his own salvation, is suffering from a serious illness.
He is running a very great risk of eternal damnation.
He has one foot in Hell here on this earth!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on VIRTUE, QUOTES on WEALTH/RICHES

Thought for the Day – 25 January – The Rich

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

The Rich

“Wealth is a gift from God.
Therefore, it is good, like everything else which comes from God.
Worldly wealth, as St Thomas Aquinas says, can be an instrument of virtue.
But, it is good only insofar, as it leads to holiness.
If it interferes with the practice of virtue, it is evil
(Summa Contra Gentiles, Bk III, 134).

God created the wealth of the earth, not for a few but, for all mankind.
All men have the right, therefore, to draw their means of subsistence from the earth.
If any individual with large private possessions, however lawfully acquired, battles against this right to live, he commits a grave sin.
This could happen either because a man is lacking in justice or in charity.
Both justice and charity are commanded by God, however and, it matters very little, whether a man goes to Hell because he has offended against justice or because he has offended against charity.
Hell is Hell, in either case!

Let us examine ourselves and see if we are lacking in either of the virtues.
It is certain that there would not be so much misery and want in the world, if the Gospel teaching on the virtues of justice and charity had ever really triumphed.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/01/27/thought-for-the-day-27-january-the-rich/

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on MEDITATION, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on SIN, The LAST THINGS

Thought for the Day – 12 January – HELL 1

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

HELL 1

“In whatever you do, remember your last days and you will never sin.” (Eccl 7:36)

“The meditation considered, by the masters of the spiritual life, to be the most useful for rousing the soul from sin, or from a state of torpor, is that on the last things, in other words, on what will happen to us at the end of life.
Amongst these last things, hell is the most terrifying.
Yet, if the mercy of God did not sustain us, we could fall into hell at any moment.
St John Chrysostom meditated on hell everyday.
All the Saints have found in this meditation, the first steps on the way to perfection.
Remember, that a single mortal sin, would merit hell for us!
In that moment, the sinner could have been already hurled into the abyss of torments.
Let us imagine, that we are there …. and, that the goodness and mercy of God has released us from those everlasting, all-devouring flames.   If this should happen, all the sacrifices, which virtue demands, would seem so easy and pleasant.
How ready we should be to do anything, sooner than return to that chasm of eternal sorrow!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DIVINE MERCY, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SUFFERING

Thought for the Day – 9 January – Death

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

Death

“Death, like suffering, is the result of sin: “Through sin death” (Rom 5:12).
But, it is more than a punishment for sin.
It is also a liberation for the just who, like St Francis of Assisi, look upon death as the good sister, who will come one day to set them free and unite them with Christ in everlasting happiness.
Desiring to depart and to be with Christ …” (Phil 1:33).

Death is certainly a fearful thing.
It is the violent separation of the soul from the body.
The mere thought makes us tremble, for our eternal happiness, or misery, depends on this moment.
But, if we lead good Christian lives, if we strive with the help of divine grace to avoid sin and to do what is good, death is no longer terrible.
Death is now reward.
It is the paradise which awaits us.
Even in the mystery of death, the Justice of God is interwoven with His Mercy.
As He punishes us in order to correct us, so, He makes us die, in order to bestow on us, the joys of Heaven.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/01/08/thought-for-the-day-8-january-death/

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, SACRAMENTS, The KINGDOM of GOD, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD

Thought for the Day – 10 December – Those Who Will to be Damned

Thought for the Day – 10 December – 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/