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Thought for the Day – 13 June – St Anthony

Thought for the Day – 13 June – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

St Anthony

henceforward italy was st anthony second fatherland - bacci - gradual martyrdom 13 june 2020

“St Anthony of Padua was not born a saint but he became one as the result of prayer, self-denial and penance, which attracted to him, God’s many graces.

On a summer evening in the year 1219, five mendicant friars arrived at the gate of the ancient Abbey of Coimbra, asking for hospitality from the Canons Regular of St Augustine.
They received a whole-hearted welcome.
When they had refreshed themselves, they revealed that they belonged to the new Religious Family founded by St Francis of Assisi.
They said that they hoped to reach Morocco, in order to convert the Saracens and, if it was God’s pleasure, to receive the palm of Martyrdom.
Amongst the Canons Regular, who were listening to them, was the youthful Anthony, who had already consecrated his life to God.

Not long afterwards, this little band of Franciscan Missionaries, was cut down by the scimitars of the infidels and became a glorious band of Martyrs.
Their bodies were brought back in triumph to the Abbey which they had visited and there they were buried with great honour.
When they were going away, Anthony had listened enthusiastically to all that they had said and felt a noble envy.
Now that he was in the presence of their hallowed remains, he experienced an urge to follow in their footsteps.

St Anthony joined the Franciscan Order and joyfully set off for the coast of Morocco in search of Missionary labour and of Martyrdom.
But, when he landed on African soil, he was struck down by a serious attack of malaria, which compelled him to return to his native land.

There is no foreseeing the designs of Divine Providence.
The boat in which Anthony was travelling was battered by a tempest and had to go ashore in Italy.
Henceforward, Italy was Anthony’s second fatherland.
It was here, that he conducted his remarkable and fruitful apostolate and slowly accomplished his Martyrdom, by the daily struggle for perfection.

This, is a headline for us!
We may not have been called to go and spread the faith amongst the infidels, at the risk of Martyrdom.
But, we have all been called to a state of holiness.
Perfection, moreover, is a gradual Martyrdom.
The heroic daily effort which is required to abstain from sin and to overcome the wayward tendencies of our nature, can fairly be said, to be, no less difficult, than a bloody Martyrdom.
This is the kind of Martyrdom which we must all endure.
St Anthony of Padua, will obtain for us the grace, to undergo it with the same generosity and constancy, which he displayed.”

St Anthony of Padua, Pray for Us all! Amen.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

ST ANTHONY OF PADUA PRAY FOR US 3

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Sunday Reflection– 24 May – “We shall not be left orphans …”

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

“Arise, make haste, my love, my dove,
my beautiful one and come.
For the winter is now past, the rain is over and gone.
The flowers have appeared in our land.”

Cant 2:10-12

“One thing alone I know – that, according to our need, so will be our strength.
One thing I am sure of, that the more the enemy rages against us, so much the more, will the Saints in Heaven, plead for us;
the more fearful are our trials from the world, the more present to us will be our Mother Mary and our good Patrons and Angel Guardians;
the more malicious are the devices of men against us, the louder cry of supplication will ascend from the bosom of the whole Church of God, for us.
We shall not be left orphans;
we shall have within us, the strength of the Paraclete, promised to the Church and to every member of it.
My Fathers, my Brothers in the Priesthood, I speak from my heart when I declare my conviction, that there is no-one among you here present but, if God so willed, would readily become a martyr for His sake.
I do not say you would wish it;
I do not say that the natural will would not pray that that chalice might pass away,
I do not speak of what you can do by any strength of yours – but, in the strength of God, in the grace of the Spirit, in the armour of justice, by the consolations and peace of the Church, by the blessing of the Apostles Peter and Paul and, in the name of Christ, you would do what nature cannot do.
By the intercession of the Saints on high, by the penances and good works and the prayers of the people of God on earth, you would be forcibly borne up as upon the waves of the mighty deep and carried on out of yourselves by the fullness of grace, whether nature wished it or no.
I do not mean violently, or with unseemly struggle but calmly, gracefully, sweetly, joyously, you would mount up and ride forth to the battle, as on the rush of Angels’ wings, as your fathers did before you and gained the prize.
You, who day by day, offer up the Immaculate Lamb of God, you who hold in your hands the Incarnate Word under the visible tokens which He has ordained, you who again and again drain the Chalice of the Great Victim;
who is to make you fear?
what is to startle you?
what to seduce you?
who is to stop you, whether you are to suffer or to do, whether to lay the foundations of the Church ‘n tears, or to put the crown upon the work in jubilation?”

St John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

1852 – “The Second Spring”
at the first Provincial Synod of the newly restored
Roman Catholic hierarchy in England.

(John Henry Newman – Spiritual Writings – Selected by John T Ford)

one thing I know that according to our need so will be our strength - st john henry newman 24 may 2020 coronavirus

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Quote/s of the Day – 21 May – Blessed Franz Jägerstätter (1907-1943) Layman Martyr “A Saint for our Times!”

Quote/s of the Day – 21 May – Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter and the Memorial of Blessed Franz Jägerstätter OFS (1907-1943) Layman Martyr “The Man Who Would Not Bow His Head to Hitler.”

“If the Church stays silent
in the face of what is happening,
what difference would it make,
if no church were ever opened again?”

if the church stays silent - bl franz jagerstatter 21 may 2020

His sacrifice was uniformly regarded as foolish by his neighbours and his story almost forgotten but for a book written by an American, Gordon Zahn, who heard of Jagerstatter when researching the subject of German Catholics’ response to Hitler.
This book, In Solitary Witness, influenced Daniel Ellsberg’s decision to stand against the Vietnam War by bringing the Pentagon Papers to public attention.   The following quote, taken from one of Jagerstatter’s last letters while in prison.

“Just as the man who thinks only of this world, does everything possible to make life here easier and better, so must we, too, who believe in the eternal Kingdom, risk everything in order to receive a great reward there.
Just as those who believe in National Socialism tell themselves that their struggle is for survival, so must we, too, convince ourselves that our struggle is for the eternal Kingdom.
But with this difference – we need no rifles or pistols for our battle but instead, spiritual weapons – and the foremost among these is prayer…. Through prayer, we continually implore new grace from God, since without God’s help and grace it would be impossible for us to preserve the Faith and be true to His commandments….”

we need no rifles or pistols for our battle - bl franz jagerstatter 21 may 2020

“Let us love our enemies,
bless those who curse us,
pray for Those who persecute us.
For love will conquer
and will endure for all eternity.
And happy are they who live
and die in God’s love.”

let us love our enemies - bl franz jagerstatter 21 may 2020

“I can say from my own experience
how painful life often is,
when one lives as a halfway Christian-
it is more like vegetating than living.”

halfway christian more like vegetatin gthan living bl franz jagerstatter 21 may 2020

“We are not dealing with a small matter
but the great (apocalyptic)
life and death struggle has already begun.
Yet in the midst of it, there are many,
who still go on living their lives
as though nothing had changed … “

we are not dealing with a small matter - bl franz jagerstatter 21 may 2020

“I am convinced that it is still best
that I speak the truth,
even though it costs me my life.
For you will not find it written
in any of the commandments of God
or of the Church,
that a man is obliged under pain of sin,
to take an oath committing him to obey
whatever might be commanded him by his secular ruler. “

i am convinced that it is still best that I speak the truth - bl franz jagerstattr 21 may 2020

“Since the death of Christ,
almost every century has seen the persecution of Christians,
there have always been heroes
and martyrs who gave their lives –
often in horrible ways –
for Christ and their faith.
If we hope to reach our goal some day,
then we, too, must become heroes of the faith.”

if we hope to reach our goal some day then we too must become heroes of the faith - bl franz jagerstatter 21 may 2020

“I cannot believe that,
just because one has a wife and children,
a man is free to offend God.”

i cannot believe that juse because - bl franz jagerstatter 21 may 2020

“I believe it is better to sacrifice one’s life right away,
than to place oneself in the grave danger
of committing sin and then dying.”

Blessed Franz Jägerstätter (1907-1943)

“Called-up to a Higher Order”
Martyr of Conscientious Objection

i believe it is better to sacrifice one's life - rather than commit sin - bl franz jagerstatter 21 may 2020

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on TRADITION, SAINT of the DAY, The RESURRECTION

Quote/s of the Day – 2 May –

Quote/s of the Day – 2 May – Saturday of the Third Week of Easter and the Memorial of St Athanasius (c 295-373) Father and Doctor of the Church “The Father of Orthodoxy”

“In ancient times, before the divine sojourn of the Saviour took place,
even to the saints, death was terrible,
all wept for the dead as though they perished.
But now, that the Saviour has raised His body,
death is no longer terrible,
for all who believe in Christ, trample on it, as it were nothing
and choose rather to die, than deny their faith in Christ.
And that devil, that once maliciously exulted in death,
now that its pains were loosed,
remained the only one truly dead.”

but now that the saviour has raised his body - st athanasius 2 may 2020

“In death, the Word made a spotless sacrifice and oblation of the body He had taken.   By dying for others, He immediately banished death for all mankind.”

On the Incarnation

in death the word made a spotless - st athanasius - 2 may 2019

“But what is also to the point, let us note that the very tradition, teaching and faith of the Catholic Church from the beginning was preached by the Apostles and preserved by the Fathers. On this the Church was founded – and if anyone departs from this, he neither is, nor any longer ought to be called, a Christian.”

but-what-is-also-to-the-point-let-us-note-st-athanasius-2-may-2019

“Christians, instead of arming themselves
with swords,
extend their hands in prayer.”

St Athanasius (c 295-373)

christians instaed of arming themselves - st athanasius 2 may 2020

Posted in MARIAN QUOTES, ON the SAINTS, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on VIRTUE, SAINT of the DAY, St Louis-Marie Grignion de MONTFORT, To JESUS through MARY

Quote/s of the Day – 28 May – God alone!

Quote/s of the Day – 28 May – Tuesday of the Third Week of Easter and the Memorial of St Louis Marie Grignion de Montfort (1673-1716), St Peter Chanel (1803-1841) Priest and Martyr, St Gianna Beretta Molla (1922-1962), Blessed María Felicia of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament OCD (1925-1959)

“God alone!”

GOD ALONE - st louis de montfort 28 april 2020

“Chosen soul, how will you bring this about?
What steps will you take to reach the high level
to which God is calling you?
The means of holiness and salvation,
are known to everybody,
since they are found in the Gospel,
the masters of the spiritual life have explained them,
the Saints have practised them…
These means are –
sincere Humility,
unceasing Prayer,
complete Self-denial,
abandonment to Divine Providence
and obedience to the Will of God.”

chosen soul how will you bring this about - st louis de montfort 28 april 2020

“Since grace enhances our human nature
and glory adds a still greater perfection to grace,
it is certain, that our Lord remains in heaven,
just as much the Son of Mary as He was on earth.
Consequently, He has retained the submissiveness
and obedience of the most Perfect of all Children,
towards the Best of all Mothers.”

True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin, #27

since grace enhances our human nature and glory - st louis de montfort 28 april 2020

“The greatest saints,
those richest in grace and virtue,
will be the most assiduous in praying
to the most Blessed Virgin,
looking up to her,
as the perfect model to imitate
and as a powerful helper to assist them. “

St Louis Marie Grignion de Montfort (1673-1716)

the greatest saints - st louis de montfort 28 april 2020

“It does not matter, whether or not I am killed,
the religion has taken root on the island,
it will not be destroyed by my death,
since it comes not from men but from God.”

St Peter Chanel (1803-1841) Priest and Martyr

it does not matter whether or not i am killed - st peter chanel 28 april 2020

“The stillness of prayer
is the most essential condition
for fruitful action.
Before all else,
the disciple kneels down.”

the-stillness-of-prayer-st-gianna-molla-28-april-2018

“Our body is a cenacle,
a monstrance –
through its crystal,
the world should see God.”

St Gianna Beretta Molla (1922-1962)

our body is a cenacle - st gianna molla - 28 april 2018

“Father, for Your glory,
accept the total surrender of my being,
in union with the perfect sacrifice of Your divine Son.
In Him, through Him and with Him,
I live, love, believe, suffer and die….”

Blessed María Felicia of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament (1925-1959)

Father for your glory - bl maria of jesus in the bl sac - 28 april 2020

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on VIRTUE

Thought for the Day – 3 April – Our Martyrdom

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

Our Martyrdom

“St Ambrose describes virtue, as a slow martyrdom.
In this sense, we must all be martyrs.
There is only one difference.
The Martyrs of the Church shed their blood and gave up their lives for Jesus, within one hour or one day and gained their reward immediately.
Our martyrdom, on the other hand, will be prolonged.
It will last all our lives and will end only when we accept death with resignation from the hands of God.
Ours is the martyrdom of virtue.
Let us clearly understand, that solid Christian virtue is a slow and continual martyrdom, which will end with death.
It is not a flower, which springs up spontaneously in the garden of the soul.
It is like a seed which is thrown on the damp earth and must die there slowly, so that it can generate young shoots, which will produce the ears of corn.
“Unless the grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone. But, if it dies, it brings forth much fruit” (Jn 12:24-25).
It is necessary, then, to descend into the mire of humility and to remain there until we die.
Only after we have died to ourselves, shall we rise again in God (Cf ibid).
After the death of our lower instincts and vices, we shall find a new life.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

st ambrose describes virtue as a slo martyrdom - bacci 3 april 2020

Posted in MARTYRS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 21 February – ‘carrying His cross’

One Minute Reflection – 21 February – Friday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: James 2:14-24, 26, Psalm 112:1-6, Mark 8:34–9:1 and the Memorial of Blessed Noel Pinot (1747-1794) Priest and Martyr

“He summoned the crowd with his disciples and said to them, “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross and follow me.” … Mark 8:34mark 8 34 - whoever wishes to follow me must take up his cross - 21 feb 2020

REFLECTION – “What does this mean, “take up a cross”?   It means he will bear with whatever is troublesome and in this very act he will be following me.
When he has begun to follow me, according to My teaching and precepts, he will find many people contradicting him and standing in his way, many who not only deride but even persecute him.
Moreover, this is true, not only of pagans who are outside the church but also of those, who seem to be in it visibly but are outside of it because of the perversity of their deeds.
Although these glory, in merely the title of Christian, they continually persecute faithful Christians.
Such belong to the members of the church in the same way, that bad blood is in the body.
Therefore, if you wish to follow Christ, do not delay in carrying His cross, tolerate sinners but do not yield to them.
Do not let the false happiness of the wicked corrupt you.
You do well to despise all things for the sake of Christ, in order that you may be fit for his companionship.” … St Caesarius of Arles (470-543) – (Sermons, 159)when he has begun to follow me - st caesarius of arles - 21 feb 2020

PRAYER – Holy Father, send Your Divine Enlightener into the hearts of all Your faithful, filling us with the strength to fulfil our mission as the followers of Your only Son, our Saviour and to take up our cross in His footsteps.   Teach us and guide us, to deny ourselves for His sake.   As the zealous, faithful and courageous shepherd Blessed Noel Pinot, died for love of Christ and His Church, may we and all our Priests, profit by his intercession and be strengthened in the face of all persecution.  We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus, in unity with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amenBL NOEL PINOT PRAY FOR US 21 FEB 2020

Posted in MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on MISSION, SAINT of the DAY, The LAST THINGS

Quote/s of the Day – 18 February – Saint Francis Regis Clet Martyr Missionary

Quote/s of the Day – 18 February – The Memorial of Saint Francis Regis Clet CM (1748-1820) Priest and Martyr

“What a great treasure is a good Missionary
and how few people in this world, are willing
to serve God and His Church in purity of faith,
detachment from creatures and self-abnegation.”

St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)

st vincent de paul quote - what a great treasure is a goodmissionary - st francis regis clet 18 feb 2020

“My brother, you judge me now,
in a short time my Lord Himself will judge you.”

Saint Francis Regis Clet (1748-1820)
Vincentian Priest and Martyr Missionary

my brother, you judge me now - st francis regis clet - 18 feb 2020

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FRANCISCAN OFM, MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 5 February – ‘…The Lord’s cup’

Quote/s of the Day – 5 February – The Memorial of St Philip of Jesus (1572-1597) Martyr, Patron of Mexico City

“But to bear with insult,
patiently undergo humiliation,
pray for those who persecute us (Mt 5,39.44) –
that is the Lord’s cup,
that is the Lord’s feast.“

Saint Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor of the Churchbut to bear with insult - st augustine - martyrdom-5 feb 2020 st philip of jesus

“O happy ship!
O happy galleon for Philip,
lost for my gain!
Loss—no loss for me
but the greatest of all gain!”

St Philip of Jesus (1572-1597) Martyr,

Patron of Mexico Cityo happy ship - st philip of jesus 5 feb 2020

“So everyone who acknowledges me before men,
I also will acknowledge before my Father,
who is in heaven…”

Matthew 10:32matthew-10-32-so-everyone-who-acknowledges-me-13-july-2019-and-27-nov-2019 and 5 feb 2020

Posted in MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on WEALTH/RICHES, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 21 January – Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?”

Quote/s of the Day – 21 January – Tuesday of the Second week in Ordinary Time, Year A and the Memorial of St Agnes (c 291- c 304) – Virgin Martyr

Jesus said in reply, “You do not know what you are asking.
Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?”
They said to him, “We can.”

Matthew 20:28matthew 20 28 can you drink that i am going to drink 21 jan 2020

“You may stain your sword with
my blood but you will never profane
my body that I have consecrated to Christ.”

St Agnes (c 291- c 304) Virgin and Martyryou may stain your sword with my blood - st agnes - 21 jan 2020

“The tyrant dies and his rule is over,
the martyr dies and his rule begins.”

Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855)

The Journals of Kierkegaardthe tyrant dies and his rule is over the martyr dies and his rule begins - soren kierkegaard 21 jan 2019

“Deceitful are the ephemeral pleasures
and joys of this world.
Our supreme comfort in this life, is to die to the world
that we may live with Jesus crucified.
Let others seek gold and other earthly treasures.
I already possess the immortal treasure
of holy poverty on the Cross of Jesus crucified.
The angelic virtue, growing like a pure, fragrant lily
in the hidden beauteous garden of the cloister,
adorns the forehead with heavenly tints,
for it has roots in the Cross of Jesus crucified.
A third crown completes my oblation,
it is the seal of glory,
whereby the obedient, spotless Lamb gained victory.
Obedience is the secure science
of living with Jesus crucified.
With this triple treasure,
I can hope to pass beyond
the fleeting confines of mortal man,
by living poor on this earth and rich in heaven,
united with Jesus crucified.”

Blessed Miguel Agustin Pro (1891-1927)

Priest and Martyrdeceitful-are-the-ephemeral-pleasures-and-joys-of-this-world-bl-miguel-pro-23-nov-2019 and 21 jan 2020

“One doesn’t suffer
when one suffers
for Christ.”

Bl Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyrone-doesnt-suffer-when-one-suffers-for-christ-bl-jerzy-pray-for-us-19-oct-2019and-27-nov-2019.and 21 jan 2020jpg

Posted in CARMELITES, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The RESURRECTION

Quote/s of the Day – 28 December – The Feast of the Holy Innocents

Quote/s of the Day – 28 December – The Feast of the Holy Innocents – The Fourth Day of the Christmas Octave

“These then, whom Herod’s cruelty
tore as sucklings from their mothers’ bosom,
are justly hailed as “infant martyr flowers”;
they were the Church’s first blossoms,
matured by the frost of persecution
during the cold winter of unbelief.”

St Augustine (354-430)
Father & Doctor of the Churchthese-then-28-dec-2017 and 2019.jpg

“The star of Bethlehem
shines forth in the dark night of sin.
Upon the radiance
that goes forth from the manger,
there falls the shadow of the cross.
In the dark of Good Friday, the light is extinguished
but it rises more brightly, as the sun of grace.
on the morning of the resurrection.
The road of the incarnate Son of God,
is through the cross and suffering.
to the splendour of the resurrection.
To arrive with the Son of Man,
through suffering and death,
at this splendour of the resurrection,
is the road for each one of us,
for all mankind.”

St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross
[Edith Stein] (1891-1942)the star of bethlehem shines forth - st teresa benedicta - holy innocents 28 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, CHRISTMASTIDE!, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 28 December – They are alive! 

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

“A voice was heard in Ramah, sobbing and loud lamentation; Rachel weeping for her children and she would not be consoled, since they were no more.” … Matthew 2:18matthew 2 18 - a voice was heard in rama - feast of the holy innocents 28 dec 2019.jpg

REFLECTION – “Where does this jealousy lead?…   The crime committed today shows us. Fear of a rival to his earthly kingdom fills Herod with anxiety, he plots to suppress “the newborn King” (Mt 2:2), the eternal Kin, he fights against his Creator and puts innocent children to death…   As for those children, what fault had they committed?   Their tongues were dumb, their eyes had seen nothing, their ears heard nothing, their hands done nothing.   They accepted death who had not known life. ( … )   Christ reads the future and knows the secrets of the heart, He weighs our thoughts and probes our intentions (cf. Ps 138[139]), why did He forsake them? ( … )   Why did the newborn heavenly King abandon these companions in innocence, forget the sentinels watching around His crib to such an extent, that the foe who wanted to get at the King, ravaged His whole army?

My brethren, Christ did not forsake His soldiers but covered them with honour by allowing them to conquer, before they had lived and to carry away the prize, without a fight. ( … )   He wanted them to possess heaven rather than earth. ( … )   He sent them before Him as His heralds.   He did not abandon them but saved those who went on ahead.   He did not forget them. ( … )

Blessed are they who have exchanged their travail for repose, their pains for ease, their suffering for joy.   They are alive!   Yes, they are alive, they live indeed, who have undergone death for Christ’s sake. ( … )   Happy the tears their mothers shed for these infants, they have won them the grace of baptism. ( … )   May He who deigned to rest in a stable be pleased to lead us also, to the heavenly pastures.” … St Peter Chrysologus (400-450) Bishop of Ravenna, Father and Doctor of the Churchthey accepted death who had not known life - st peter chrysologus - holy innocents - 28 dec 2019.jpg

PRAYER – We praise you, O God, we acclaim you as Lord, the white-robed army of martyrs praise you. (from the Te Deum).we-praise-you-o-god-te-deum-28-dec-2017 and 2019.jpg

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 27 November – “But not a hair of your head shall perish.” … Luke 21:9

Quote/s of the Day – 27 November – Wednesday of the Thirty Fourth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 21:12–19

“Blessed are you
when men revile you
and persecute you …
on my account”

Matthew 5:11matthew 5 11 blesed are you wqhen men revile you and persecute you on my account 27 nov 2019.jpg

But to bear with insult,
patiently undergo humiliation,
pray for those who persecute us (Mt 5,39.44) –
that is the Lord’s cup,
that is the Lord’s feast.“

Saint Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor of the Churchbut-to-bear-with-insult-patiently-undergo-humiliation...st-augustine-feast-of-st-james-25-july-2019. and 27 nov 2019.jpg

“Sheltered under the name of
Jesus Christ,
I do not fear these pains ….”

Saint Lawrence (Died 258), Deacon and Martyrsheltered-under-the-name-of-jesus-christ-st-lawrence-10-aug-2019 and 27 nov 2019.jpg

“One doesn’t suffer
when one suffers
for Christ.”

Bl Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyrone-doesnt-suffer-when-one-suffers-for-christ-bl-jerzy-pray-for-us-19-oct-2019and 27 nov 2019.jpg

“So everyone who acknowledges me before men,
I also will acknowledge before my Father,
who is in heaven…”

Matthew 10:32matthew-10-32-so-everyone-who-acknowledges-me-13-july-2019 and 27  nov 2019.jpg

 

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 23 November – Live with Christ Crucified – Bl Miguel Pro

Quote/s of the Day – 23 November – The Memorial of Blessed Miguel Pro – Priest and Martyr of the Cristero War (1891-1927)

“We ought to speak,
shout out against injustices,
with confidence
and without fear.
We proclaim the principles
of the Church,
the reign of love,
without forgetting
that it is also a reign of JUSTICE!”we ought to spak shout out against injustrices - bl miguel pro 23 nov 2019.jpg

“Does our life become
from day-to-day more painful,
more oppressive,
more replete with sufferings?
Blessed be He a thousand times,
who desires it so.
If life be harder,
love makes it also stronger
and only this love,
grounded in suffering,
can carry the Cross of my Lord, Jesus Christ.”

does our life become from day to day - bl miguel pro 23 nov 2019.jpg

After he had taken his vows in the Society, he recorded the following meditations in his spiritual notebook. The booklet was entitled My Treasure. The words speak for themselves:

“Deceitful are the ephemeral pleasures and joys of this world.
Our supreme comfort in this life, is to die to the world
that we may live with Jesus crucified.
Let others seek gold and other earthly treasures.
I already possess the immortal treasure
of holy poverty on the Cross of Jesus crucified.
The angelic virtue, growing like a pure, fragrant lily
in the hidden beauteous garden of the cloister,
adorns the forehead with heavenly tints,
for it has roots in the Cross of Jesus crucified.
A third crown completes my oblation,
it is the seal of glory, whereby the obedient, spotless Lamb gained victory. Obedience is the secure science of living with Jesus crucified.
With this triple treasure,
I can hope to pass beyond the fleeting confines of mortal man,
by living poor on this earth and rich in heaven,
united with Jesus crucified.”

Blessed Miguel Agustin Prodeceitful are the ephemeral pleasures and joys of this world - bl miguel pro 23 nov 2019.jpg

Posted in MARTYRS, ON the SAINTS, PAPAL HOMILIES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, SAINT of the DAY, St Pope JOHN PAUL, The BEATITUDES

Thought for the Day – 19 October – “One doesn’t suffer when one suffers for Christ”

Thought for the Day – 19 October – The Memorial of Bl Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyr

This beloved and unassuming young priest of Poland was a true hero of that tortured land during the Soviet Communist occupation.   Now a Blessed, Father Jerzy was beloved by everyone in his homeland, believers and non-believers alike, because of his bravery in the face of extreme hatred on the part of the Communist officials.   His story should be much more widely known than it is.

Never in good health, the strongest part of Father Jerzy were his hands.   His most beloved possessions were the crucifix and Rosary sent to him by St Pope John Paul II, a fellow countryman.   He was sickly his whole life, yet he never complained of illness or injury.   One day, when he was making toys with his brothers and sisters, a nail pierced his palm. Later, one of the children noticed blood dripping from his hand.   One of his siblings told the parents because young Jerzy did not want to bother anyone.

Young Jerzy’s great hero was Saint Maximillian Kolbe, another Polish priest who gave his life to save another prisoner – a man with a family – at Auschwitz.   He determined early on to become a priest but kept it a secret so that the authorities could not alter his examination results or pressure the family to keep him out of the seminary.

In 1966, his entire seminary class was drafted into the special indoctrination unit in violation of a church-state agreement.   This cruel treatment was reserved for the most outspoken church leaders, including the future St Pope John Paul II.

The horrible treatment he received in this “special unit” broke his health but not his spirit.   He wrote to his father “It turned out to be very tough but I can’t be broken by threats or torture.”   His seminary professors demanded that he take a period of rest but he refused.   “One doesn’t suffer when one suffers for Christ,” was his reply.

St Pope John Paul said, on his apostolic journey to Poland in 1999:

“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 5:10).

“Our century too has written a great martyrology.   I myself, in the course of the twenty years of my papacy, have raised to the glory of the altars many groups of martyrs: Japonese, French, Vietnamese, Spanish, Mexican.   And how many martyrs there were during the time of the Second World War and under Communist totalitarianism!   They suffered and gave their lives in the death camps of Hitler or those of the Soviets.   In a few days, in Warsaw, I will beatify 108 martyrs who gave their lives for the faith in the concentration camps.   Now is the time to remember all these victims and to grant them the honour which is their due.   These are “the martyrs, many of them nameless, ‘unknown soldiers’ as it were of God’s great cause”, as I wrote in the Apostolic Letter Tertio Millennio Adveniente (No. 37).   And it is good that we speak of them in Poland, since this country had a special role in this contemporary martyrology.   It is good that we speak of them in Bydgoszcz!   All gave testimony of fidelity to Christ in spite of sufferings which horrify us by their cruelty.   Their blood was poured out on our land and made it fertile for growth and for the harvest.   That same blood continues to bring forth fruit a hundredfold for our nation, which perseveres faithfully alongside Christ and the Gospel.   Let us persevere unceasingly in union with them.   Let us thank God that they emerged victorious from their labours:   “God … tried them like gold in the furnace, and like a sacrificial offering he accepted them” (Wis 3:6).   They represent for us a model to be followed.   From their blood we ought to draw strength for the sacrifice of our own life, which we must offer to God each day.   They are an example for us, so that, like them, we may give a courageous witness of fidelity to the Cross of Christ.

4. “Blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you … on my account” (Mt 5:11).

Christ does not promise an easy life to those who follow Him.   Instead, He proclaims that, by living according to the Gospel, they are to become a sign of contradiction.   If He Himself suffered persecution, so too will His disciples:   “Beware of men”, he says, “for they will deliver you up to councils and flog you in their synagogues” (Mt 10:17).

Dear Brothers and Sisters!   Every Christian, united to Christ through the grace of Holy Baptism, has become a member of the Church and “no longer is his own” (cf. 1 Cor 6:19) but belongs to the one who died and rose for our sake.   From that moment on, the baptised enter into a particular bond of community with Christ and His Church.   They, therefore, have the duty of professing before others the faith they have received from God through the Church.   At times this demands great sacrifice on our part, to be offered each day and sometimes for an entire lifetime.   This firm perseverance alongside Christ and His Gospel, this readiness to face “sufferings for righteousness’ sake”, often involve acts of heroism and can take the form of an authentic martyrdom, carried out every day and at every moment of life, drop by drop, until the final “it is finished”.” – Homily in Bydgoszcz – Monday, 7 June 1999 (Excerpt)

The enemies of Christ rule Poland no more!

Blessed Jerzy, Pray, for us!one doesn't suffer when one suffers for christ bl jerzy pray for us 19 oct 2019.jpg

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on TRUTH, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 19 October – Truth!

Quote/s of the Day – 19 October – The Memorial of Bl Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyr

”To live in Truth
is the basic minimum of human dignity,
even if the price to defend the Truth could be costly.
You need to always remain faithful to the Truth.
Truth can never be betrayed.”to-live-in-truth-bl-jerzy-popieluszko-19-oct-2018 and 2019.jpg

“Truth never changes.
It cannot be destroyed
by any decision or legal act.
Telling the truth with courage,
is a way, leading directly to freedom.
A man who tells the Truth,
is a free man,
despite external slavery, imprisonment or custody.”truth never changes - bl jerzy 19 oct 2019.jpg

“It is not enough for a Christian to condemn evil, cowardice, lies
and use of force, hatred and oppression.
He must at all times be a witness to
and defender of justice, goodness, truth, freedom and love.
He must never tire of claiming these values
as a right both for himself and others.”it is not enough for a christian to dondemn - bl jerzy - 19 oct 2019.jpg

“Truth, like Justice,
is connected to Love
and Love has a Price.”truth-like-justice-bl-jerzy-popieluszko-19-oct-2018 and 2019.jpg

“An idea which needs
rifles to survive,
dies of its own accord.”

Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984) Martyran idea which needs rifles to survive - bl jerzy 19 oct 2019.jpg

Posted in MARTYRS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on PRIESTS, the PRIESTHOOD and CONSECRATED LIFE, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on TRUTH, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 19 October – ‘If necessary, even to die for the truth.’

One Minute Reflection – 19 October – Saturday of the Twenty-eighth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 12:8-12 and The Memorial of Blessed Jerzy Popieluszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyr

“And I tell you, every one who acknowledges me before men, the Son of man also, will acknowledge before the angels of God…” … Luke 12:8

REFLECTION  – “It seems to me that in the history of the Church, in the history of Christianity, there are many examples showing to what extent you have to defend the Truth.   You have to defend it to the end.   Jesus Christ sacrificed His life in order to announce His Divine Truth.   Likewise, the apostles sacrificed their lives.   Therefore, the role of the priest is to proclaim the Truth and suffer for the Truth…… If necessary, even to die for the truth.   Such examples are plenty in Christianity and from these examples, we should draw conclusions, for ourselves.” … Blessed Jerzy Popieluszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyrluke 12 8 and i tell you everyone who acknowledges me - the role of the priest - bl jerzy 19 oct 2019

PRAYER – God of power and mercy, You gave Blessed Jerzy Popieluszko, the grace to overcome the sufferings of his nation through the good of the Gospel and to face his own martyrdom with unfailing courage through Your love for him, grant us, who celebrate his victory, that the power of Your protecting hand may keep us unshaken in the face of our ancient enemy and all his hidden snares.   Blessed Jerzy Popieluszko, pray for us! Through our Lord Jesus Christ, in union with our Father and the Holy Spirit, one God for all eternity, amen.bl jerzy popiesluscko pray for us 19 oct 2019.jpg

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, MARTYRS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, SAINT of the DAY

Our Morning Offering – 17 October – A Martyr’s Prayer, St Ignatius of Antioch

Our Morning Offering – 17 October – Thursday of the Twenty-eighth week in Ordinary Time, Year C and the Memorial of St Ignatius of Antioch (c 35 – 107) Father of the Church, Martyr and St Francois Isidore Gagelin (1799-1833) Priest and Martyr

A Martyr’s Prayer
By St Ignatius of Antioch (c 35 – 107)
Father of the Church, Martyr

I am the wheat of God,
and am ground by the teeth of the wild beasts,
that I may be found the pure bread of God.
I long after the Lord,
the Son of the true God and Father, Jesus Christ.
Him I seek, who died for us and rose again.
I am eager to die for the sake of Christ.
My love has been crucified
and there is no fire in me that loves anything.
But there is living water springing up in me
and it says to me inwardly,
“Come to the Father”
Ameni am the wheat of god - st ignatius of antioch 17 oct 2019.jpg

Posted in MARTYRS, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on MISSION, SAINT of the DAY, St Pope JOHN PAUL

Thought for the Day – 28 September – ‘To die for the faith is a gift to some, to live the faith is a call for all.’

Thought for the Day – 28 September – The Memorial of St Lorenzo Ruiz (1600-1637) Martyrto die for the faith is a gift to some to live the faith is a call to all st john paul 28 sept 2019.jpg

Excerpt from the Beatification Homily of
St Pope John Paul
Wednesday, 18 February 1981

“The Lord Jesus by His blood truly redeemed His servants, gathered from every race, tongue, people and nation, to make them a royal priesthood for our God.   The sixteen blessed martyrs, by the exercise of their priesthood—that of baptism or of Holy Orders—performed the greatest act of worship and love of God by the sacrifice of their blood united with Christ’s own Sacrifice of the Cross.   In this way they imitated Christ the priest and victim in the most perfect way possible for human creatures.   It was at the same time an act of the greatest possible love for their brethren, for whose sake we are all called to sacrifice ourselves, following the example of the Son of God who sacrificed Himself for us.

4. This is what Lorenzo Ruiz did.   Guided by the Holy Spirit to an unexpected goal after an adventurous journey, he told the court that he was a Christian and must die for God and wοuld give his life for him a thousand times!

(Had I many thousands of lives I would offer them all for him.

Never shall I apostatise.

You may kill me if that is what you want.   To die for God—such is my will.)

Here we have him summed up, here we have a description of his faith and the reason fοr his death.   It was at this moment that this young father of a family, professed and brought to completion, the Christian catechesis that he had received in the Dominican Friars’ school in Binondo, a catechesis that cannot be other than Christ-centred, by reason both of the mystery it contains and the fact that it is Christ who teaches through the lips of His messenger.

5. The example of Lorenzo Ruiz, the son of a Chinese father and Tagala mother, reminds us that everyone’s life and the whole of one’s life must be at Christ’s disposal.   Christianity means daily giving, in response to the gift of Christ who came into the world so that all might have life and have it to the full.   Or, as so aptly expressed in the theme of my visit to this country – To die for the faith is a gift to some, to live the faith is a call for all.

Dearly beloved, amidst the efforts needed for our own Christian lives and for spreading the light of Christ throughout Asia and the whole world, let us look today to these zealous martyrs who give us deep assurance and fresh hope when they tell us – “In all this we are more than conquerors because of him who has loved us.”   And this is the mystery we celebrate today – the love of Jesus Christ, who is the light of the world. Amen.”

St Lorenzo Ruiz, Pray for Us!st lorenzo ruiz pray for us 28 sept 2019.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARTYRS, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD, VOCATIONS

One Minute Reflection – 10 August – “Whoever loves his life loses it ..”

One Minute Reflection – 10 August – Feast of Saint Lawrence (Died 258), Deacon and Martyr, Gospel: John 12:24–26

“Whoever loves his life loses it and whoever hates his life in this world will preserve it for eternal life” … John 12:25

REFLECTION – “The Roman Church commends this day to us as the blessed Laurence’s day of triumph, on which he trod down the world as it roared and raged against him, spurned it as it coaxed and wheedled him and in each case, conquered the devil as he persecuted him.  … The blessed Lawrence carried out the office of deacon in the Church of Rome.   In that office he administered Christ’s sacred blood to the faithful and for Christ’s sake he shed his own blood.   The blessed apostle John clearly expounded the mystery of the Lord’s Supper when he said:  “Just as Christ laid down his life for us, so should we lay down our lives for our brothers” (1 Jn 3:16).   Saint Lawrence understood this and acted accordingly.   His self-sacrifice was similar in kind to that which he received at the altar. He loved Christ in his life and imitated Him in death.

Brethren, let us imitate Lawrence if we truly love Christ.   We cannot show a better proof of our love than by imitating Him.   “Christ suffered for us, leaving us an example that we might follow his footsteps” (1 Pt 2:21)…   Indeed the garden of the Lord contains not only the roses of martyrdom but also the lilies of virginity, the ivy of marriage and the violets of widowhood.   So no-one, my dear brethren, need despair of his vocation.   Christ suffered for all…  Therefore we must try to understand how the Christian ought to imitate Christ other than by shedding his blood or enduring martyrdom.

The apostle Paul says of our Lord Jesus Christ:  “His state was divine, yet he did not cling to his equality with God.”   What majesty was His!   Paul adds: “He emptied himself to assume the condition of a slave and became as men are” (Phil 2,6f.).   What humility He showed!   Christ humbled Himsel,; the Christian has His example to imitate.   “Christ became obedient” (v.8).   Why then should a Christian be proud?   It was after enduring this humility and defeating death that Christ ascended into heaven, let us follow Him.” … St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor of the Church (From a sermon delivered by St Augustine in about 400 AD on the occasion of the Feast of St Lawrence.)the-roman-church-commends-this-day-to-us-st-augustine-on-st-lawrence-10 aug 2017.jpg

PRAYER – Lord God, You inspired St Lawrence with so ardent a love that his life was renowned for the service of Your people and his death for the splendour of his martyrdom.   Help us to love what he loved and to live as he showed us.   St Lawrence, Martyr for Christ and His Church, pray for us.   Through our Lord, Jesus Christ, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever amen.st-lawrence-pray-for-us-10-august-2018 and 2019.jpg

Posted in MARTYRS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on GRATITUDE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PRIESTS, the PRIESTHOOD and CONSECRATED LIFE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 28 July – St Pedro Poveda (1874-1936) Martyr

Quote/s of the Day – 28 July – The Memorial of St Pedro Poveda (1874-1936) Martyr

“Lord, may I think, what you want me to think.
May I desire, what you want me to desire.
May I speak, as you want me to speak.
May I work, as you want me to work.”lord may i think - st pedro poveda 28 july 2019.jpg

When the Civil War broke out, he was identified as an enemy by those who wished to dechristianse the schools.   A few days before his death he wrote:

“Now more than ever,
we must study the lives of the first Christians
so as to learn from them, how to behave
in times of persecution.
See how they obeyed the Church,
how they confessed Christ,
how they prepared for martyrdom,
how they prayed for their persecutors
and forgave them…”now, more than ever we must study the first christians st pedro poveda 28 july 2019.jpg

his last words:

“I am a priest of Christ”

St Pedro Poveda (1874-1936) Martyri am a priest of christ - last words - st pedro poveda 28 july 2019.jpg

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 25 July – “Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?” 

One Minute Reflection – 25 July – Feast of St James, Apostle, Gospel: Matthew 20:20–28

Jesus said in reply, “You do not know what you are asking.   Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?”   They said to him, “We can.”……Matthew 20:28matthew-20-28 - you do not know what you are asking, can you drink - st james 25 july 2017 and 2019.jpg

REFLECTION“Christ laid down His life for us, so we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers” (1Jn 3,16)…   Jesus said to Peter: “When you were younger, you used to dress yourself and go where you wanted but when you grow old …  someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go…” (Jn 21,18).   It was the Cross, the Passion, He promised him.   “Go even so far as to pasture my sheep, suffer for my sheep.” This is what a good bishop is to be like.   If he is not, he is no bishop…

Now listen to this other testimony.   Two of His disciples, the brothers John and James who were sons of Zebedee, were ambitious for the first place without consideration for the others…   Our Lord answered them:   “You do not know what you are asking”, for he added:   “Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?”   What cup is this if not that… of the Passion?…   And they, forgetting their weakness, immediately said:   “We can”.   Then He said to them:   “My cup you will indeed drink.   But to sit at my right or at my left is not mine to give but is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father”…   In this way He gave proof of His humility for, in fact, everything the Father prepares is prepared, too, for the Son…   He came in humility – He, the Creator, was created amongst us,   He made us but He was made for us.   God before time began, man in time, He delivered man from time.   This great physician has come to heal our cancer… by His example, He has come to heal pride itself.he came in humility, he the creator - st augustine - 25 july 2019 .jpg

This is what we must give our attention to, in the Lord – let us consider His humility, drink the cup of His humility, clasp Him, contemplate Him.   How easy it is to have elevated thoughts, easy to take pleasure in honours, easy to give one’s ear to flatterers and people who praise us.   But to bear with insult, patiently undergo humiliation, pray for those who persecute us (Mt 5,39.44) – that is the Lord’s cup, that is the Lord’s feast.“… Saint Augustine (354-430) FathEr & Doctor of the Church – Sermon for the ordination of a bishop, Guelferbytanus no.32but to bear with insult, patiently undergo humiliation...st augustine-feast of st james 25 july 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Almighty ever-living God, who consecrated the first fruits of Your Apostles by the blood of Saint James, grant, we pray, that Your Church may be strengthened by his confession of faith and constantly sustained by his protection.   Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.   St James the Greater, Apostle of Christ, Pray for us!   Amenst-james-pray-for-us-25-july 2017 and 2019.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 13 July – ‘I will acknowledge before my Father…’

One Minute Reflection – 13 July – Saturday of the Fourteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 10:24–33 and the Memorial of Blessed Carlos Rodriguez Santiago

“So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father, who is in heaven…”… Matthew 10:32matthew 10 32 - so everyone who acknowledges me 13 july 2019.jpg

REFLECTION – “You can be a witness to Christ every day.   You were tempted by the spirit of impurity but… you considered that chastity of spirit and body should not be soiled – you are a martyr or, in other words, a witness to Christ… You were tempted by the spirit of pride but, seeing the poor and needy, you were seized by tender compassion and preferred humility to arrogance –  you are a witness to Christ.   Better still – you have not given your witness in word alone but in deed as well.
What is the surest kind of witness?   “Anyone who acknowledges that Jesus Christ came among us in the flesh” (cf. 1Jn 4,2) and who keeps the commands of the Gospel…   How many there are each day of these hidden martyrs of Christ who confess the Lord Jesus!    The apostle Paul knew that kind of martyrdom and witness of faith rendered to Christ, he who said:  “Our boast is this, the testimony of our conscience” (2Cor 1,12).   For how many people have made a confession of faith exteriorly but denied it interiorly!…  So be faithful and courageous in interior persecutions so that you may also win the victory in exterior persecutions.   There are “kings and rulers,” judges of formidable power, in the persecutions within, likewise.   You have an example of these in the temptations undergone by our Lord (Mt 4,1ff.)”… St Ambrose (340-397) Father & Doctor of the Church -Sermon 20 on Psalm 118what is the surest kind of witness - st ambrose - 13 july 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Come to help us in our weakness, God of mercy, forgive the sins of Your people and as nothing we can do is worthy in Your sight, save us through the intercession of the Mother of our Lord, Jesus Christ.   Listen too to the prayers of a fellow pilgrim Blessed Carlos, who has, by his love for You and passion to proclaim Christ Your Son, reached his eternal destination with You.   We make our prayer through Jesus with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.bl-mother-of-our-lord-pray-for-us-27-oct-2018

bl carlos santiago pray for us 13 july 2019

Posted in "Follow Me", DOCTORS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 9 July – I will not deny you

Quote/s of the Day – 9 July – The Memorial of Saints St Augustine Zhao Rong and Companions, Martyrs of China

“Even though I should have to die with you, I will not deny you.”

Matthew 26:35matthew 9 35 even though i should suffer with you i will not deny you 9 july 2019

“The road is narrow.
He who wishes to travel it more easily,
must cast off all things
and use the cross as his cane.
In other words,
he must be truly resolved,
to suffer willingly,
for the love of God in all things.”

St John of the Cross (1542-1591) Doctor of the Churchthe road is narrow - st john of the cross 9 july 2019 chinese martyrs

Posted in MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 22 June – The question is, would we too?

Thought for the Day – 22 June – The Memorial of St Thomas More (1478-1535) Martyr

His belief that no lay ruler has jurisdiction over the Church of Christ cost Thomas More his life.

Beheaded on Tower Hill, London, on 6 July 1535, More steadfastly refused to approve King Henry VIII’s divorce and remarriage and establishment of the Church of England.

Described as “a man for all seasons,” which title is drawn from what Robert Whittington, an English man of letters, in 1520 wrote of More:

“More is a man of an angel’s wit and singular learning.   I know not his fellow.   For where is the man of that gentleness, lowliness and affability?   And, as time requires, a man of marvellous mirth and pastimes and sometime of as sad gravity.   A man for all seasons.”

More was a literary scholar, eminent lawyer, gentleman, father of four children and chancellor of England.   An intensely spiritual man, he would not support the king’s divorce from Catherine of Aragon in order to marry Anne Boleyn.   Nor would he acknowledge Henry as supreme head of the Church in England, breaking with Rome, and denying the pope as head.

More was committed to the Tower of London to await trial for treason, not swearing to the Act of Succession and the Oath of Supremacy.   Upon conviction, More declared he had all the councils of Christendom and not just the council of one realm to support him in the decision of his conscience.

Four hundred years later in 1935, Thomas More was Canonised a saint of God.   Few saints are more relevant to our time.   In the year 2000, in fact, St Pope John Paul II named him patron of political leaders.   The supreme diplomat and counsellor, he did not compromise his own moral values in order to please the king, knowing that true allegiance to authority is not blind acceptance of everything that authority wants.     King Henry himself realised this and tried desperately to win his chancellor to his side because he knew   More was a man whose approval counted, a man whose personal integrity no one questioned.   But when Thomas More resigned as chancellor, unable to approve the two matters that meant most to Henry, the king had to get rid of him.   Before being executed he said, “I die the king’s faithful servant, but God’s first.”   The question is, would we too?i die the king's faithful servant but god's first st thomas more 22 june 2019 no 2.jpg

St Thomas More, Pray for us!st thomas more pray for us 22 june 2019 no 2

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN QUOTES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Quote/s of the Day – 2 May – Athanasius and Antoninus

Quote/s of the Day – 2 May – Thursday of the Second week of Easter, Gospel: John 3:31–36 and the Memorial of St Athanasius (297-373) – Father and Doctor of the Church and St Antoninus of Florence OP (1389-1459)

“For the Son of God became man
so that we might become God.”for the son of god became man - st athanasius - 2 may 2019

“Christians, instead of arming themselves with swords,
extend their hands in prayer.”christians instead of arming themselves with swords - st athanasius 2 may 2019

“But what is also to the point, let us note that the very tradition, teaching and faith of the Catholic Church from the beginning was preached by the Apostles and preserved by the Fathers. On this the Church was founded – and if anyone departs from this, he neither is, nor any longer ought to be called, a Christian.”

St Athanasius (297-373) Father & Doctor of the Churchbut what is also to the point let us note - st athanasius 2 may 2019

“While other martyrs suffered
by sacrificing their own lives,
the Blessed Virgin suffered,
by sacrificing her Son’s life.”

St Antoninus OP (1389-1459)while other martyrs suffered - st antoninus 2 may 2019

Posted in EUCHARISTIC Adoration, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The PASSION, The RESURRECTION

Quote/s of the Day – 24 April – St Fidelis & St Mary Euphrasia Pelletier

Quote/s of the Day – 24 April – Wednesday of Easter week and the Memorial of St Fidelis of Sigmaringen OFM.Cap. (1577-1622) and St Mary Euphrasia Pelletier (1796-1868)

“Woe to me if I should prove myself
but a half-hearted soldier in the service
of my thorn-crowned Captain.”woe-to-me-st-fidelis - 24 apil 2019 no 2

“What made the holy apostles and martyrs
endure fierce agony and bitter torments,
except faith and especially faith in the resurrection?
What is it that today makes true followers of Christ
cast luxuries aside, leave pleasures behind
and endure difficulties and pain?
It is a living faith that expresses itself through love.
It is this that makes us put aside the goods of the present
in the hope of future goods. It is because of faith
that we exchange the present for the future.”

St Fidelis of Sigmaringen (1577-1622)what made the holy apostles and martyrs - st fidelis - 24 april 2019

“May your heart be an altar,
from which the bright flame,
of unending thanksgiving
ascends to heaven.”may-your-heart-be-an-altar-st-mary-euphrasia-24-april-2019 no 2

“Draw near to our Lord, thoroughly aware
of you own nothingness and you may hope
all things from His Goodness and Mercy.
Never forget that Jesus Christ is no less generous
in the Blessed Sacrament than He was
during His mortal life on earth.”draw-near-to-our-lord-st-mary-euphrasia-24-april-2018

O my God,
may every beat of my heart,
be a prayer, to obtain grace
and pardon for sinners.
May all my sighs, be so many
appeals to Your infinite mercy.
May each look, have the virtue,
to gain to Your love,
those souls, whom I shall look on.
May the food of my life,
be to work without ceasing
for Your glory
and the salvation of souls.
Amen

St Mary Euphrasia Pelletier (1796-1868)morning-prayer-of-st-mary-euphrasia-pelletier-24-april 2019-o-my-god-may-every-beat-of-my-heart-no-2-jpg2.jpg

Posted in CATHOLIC Quotes, MARTYRS, ON the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SUFFERING, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 20 February – Bl Julia Rodzinska

Quote/s of the Day – 20 February – The Memorial of Blessed Julia Rodzinska OP (1899-1945) Martyr

“Kneeling on a wooden plank, straight,
with her head lifted up and eyes aimed
at the Infinite is our sister Julia.
She holds a rosary in her strong, shapely hands.
Her face is focused… She was very pious.
Her piety influenced others.
In her presence, one felt the need to pray.”knelling on a wooden plank - on bl julia rodzinska 20 feb 2019

“She was outstanding
in her love of God
and the Church.”

“She performed works of mercy
where there was no mercy.”

“She reminded us frequently
that God guides everything.”

By a fellow inmate of the Concentration Camp
speaking of Blessed Julia Rodzinska, Martyrshe was outstanding,she performed works of mercy,she reminded us - bl julia rodzinska martyr 20 feb 2019

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, POETRY, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, SAINT of the DAY, SPEAKING of ....., The CHRIST CHILD, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The PASSION

Thought for the Day – 21 January – The Burning Babe

Thought for the Day – 21 January – Monday of the Second week in Ordinary Time –  and The Memorial of St Agnes (c 291- c 304) Virgin and Martyr

Seeing as it is the Memorial of St Agnes and we are thinking about martyrdom, I have included the post below, which is an excerpt from my post on St Robert Southwell’s Memorial – 21 February.    It is talk by Servant of God, Fr John A Hardon SJ (1914-2000) (a hero!).   If you wish to read the whole post, it is here:  https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/21/saint-of-the-day-21-february-st-robert-southwell-s-j-1561-1595-martyr/

“There are two books, prose writings, that Robert Southwell wrote that are worth reading.   They are of course written in 16th century English but, powerful, written to encourage his fellow Catholics to remain firm in their faith.   The one is called ‘Mary Magdalene’s Funeral Tears’.   And the other one is called ‘Epistle of Comfort‘.   We would probably call it a letter of encouragement.   

His poetry – we don’t know exactly when he began to write but it must have been very young because he wrote a great deal of which we have the record and by now the English speaking world knows Robert Southwell.   His two outstanding poems are ‘The Burning Babe’ and ‘The Virgin Mary to Christ On The Cross.’”

The Burning Babe, by St Robert Southwell SJ (1561-1595) Martyr

As I in hoary winter’s night stood shivering in the snow,
Surprised I was with sudden heat which made my heart to glow;
And lifting up a fearful eye to view what fire was near,
A pretty babe all burning bright did in the air appear;
Who, scorchëd with excessive heat, such floods of tears did shed
As though his floods should quench his flames which with his tears were fed.
Alas, quoth he, but newly born in fiery heats I fry,
Yet none approach to warm their hearts or feel my fire but I!
My faultless breast the furnace is, the fuel wounding thorns,
Love is the fire, and sighs the smoke, the ashes shame and scorns;
The fuel justice layeth on, and mercy blows the coals,
The metal in this furnace wrought are men’s defiled souls,
For which, as now on fire I am to work them to their good,
So will I melt into a bath to wash them in my blood.
With this he vanished out of sight and swiftly shrunk away,
And straight I called unto mind that it was Christmas day.

It’s not surprising, it’s one of the great poems of the English language.burning babe excerpt - st robert southwell - mem 21 feb - 21 jan 2019 on martyrdom mem of st agnes

St Agnes, Pray for Us!bernardo-lorente-german-sevilla-1680-sevilla-1759-e2809csaint-agnese2809d-pray-for-us

St Robert Southwell, Pray for Us!st robert southwell - pray for us - 21 feb 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN QUOTES, MARTYRS, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, SAINT of the DAY, SPEAKING of ....., The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 21 January – The Memorial of St Agnes (c 291- c 304) Virgin and Martyr

Quote/s of the Day – 21 January – The Memorial of St Agnes (c 291- c 304) Virgin and Martyr

Speaking of:   Martyrdom

“For me to live
is Christ
and to die,
is gain.”

St Paul – Philippians 1:21for me to live is christ and to die is gain st paul phil 1 21 - 21 jan 2019 martyrdom - no 2

“Christ made my soul beautiful
with the jewels of grace and virtue.
I belong to Him whom the angels serve.”

St Agnes (c 291- c 304) Virgin and Martyrchrist-made-my-soul-st-agnes-21-jan-2018.jpg

“She is too young to know of death,
yet is ready to face it.”she is too young - st ambrose on st agnes - 21 jan 2019.jpg

“One victim but a twin martyrdom,
to modesty and religion.
Agnes preserved her virginity
and gained a martyr’s crown. “

From an essay ‘On Virgins’ by

Saint Ambrose (340-397) Father & Doctor of the Churchone victim but a twin martyrdom - st ambrose on st agnes - no 2 - 21 jan 2019.jpg

“…As we are under great obligations to Jesus,
for His Passion endured for our love,
so also are we under great obligations to Mary,
for the martyrdom which she voluntarily suffered,
for our salvation, in the death of her Son”.

St Bonaventure (1217-1274) Doctor of the Churchas-we-are-under-great-st-bonaventure-on-the-sorrowful-mother-the-third-word-28-march-2018.jpg

“Nothing can happen to me
that God doesn’t want.
And all that He wants,
no matter how bad
it may appear to us,
is really for the best.”

St Thomas More (1478-1535) Martyrnothing can happen to me - st thomas more - 16 march 2018.jpg

“I do not much dread the tortures,
as I look forward to the crown.”

St Robert Southwell S.J. (1561-1595) Martyri do not much dread the tortures st robert southwell sj 21 jan 2019 on martyrdom.jpg

“The tyrant dies and his rule is over,
the martyr dies and his rule begins.”

Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855)
The Journals of Kierkegaardthe tyrant dies and his rule is over the martyr dies and his rule begins - soren kierkegaard 21 jan 2019.jpg