Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, OCTOBER - The HOLY ROSARY, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on SUFFERING, ROSARY QUOTES, The 3rd Sorrowful Mystery - THE CROWNING with THORNS, The HOLY ROSARY/ROSARY CRUSADE, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The PASSION

Thought for the Day – 10 October – The Third Sorrowful Mystery – The Crowning with Thorns

Thought for the Day – 10 October – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
The Third Sorrowful Mystery
The Crowning with Thorns

When we see Jesus scourged and crowned with thorns, how can we complain if our path in life is also strewn with thorns?
Jesus was the embodiment of innocence; He was God, yet He willed to suffer in order to expiate our sins and to teach us, that the surest road to Heaven is the way of the Cross.
It was because the Saints understood this so clearly, that they were so eager to participate in the Passion of Jesus Christ and to offer Him, not only the inevitable sorrows of life but, also voluntary suffering of their own, as a proof of their love.
Anyone who does not desire mortification and suffering, does not desire Heaven because, he is not a true follower of Jesus Crucified.

They who belong to Christ,” says St Paul, “have crucified their flesh with its passions and desires” (Gal 5:24).
Let us meditate carefully on the significance of these stern words, so often forgotten today.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/10/10/thought-for-the-day-10-october-the-third-sorrowful-mystery-the-crowning-with-thorns/

Posted in "Follow Me", MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CHASTITY, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, STATIONS of the CROSS, The 1st Sorrowful Mystery - THE AGONY IN THE GARDEN, The HOLY CROSS, The HOLY ROSARY/ROSARY CRUSADE, The PASSION

Thought for the Day – 9 October – The Second Sorrowful Mystery – The Scourging

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

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
The Second Sorrowful Mystery
The Scourging

“The Saints voluntarily imposed on themselves flogging and other severe penances, which would make us shudder in modern times, in order to control their bodily impulses and to expiate, along with Jesus, the sins of their fellowmen.
Today, the pleasure-loving world cries out against such barbaric folly and extravagance.
But you who are a Catholic, educated in the school of Christ Crucified, know that suffering has a mission in your life, that mortification is necessary for the control of the body.

We must make sacrifices in order to combat our evil impulses.
We should avoid weakness and self-indulgence.
Let us always remember that we are followers of Christ Crucified and should, therefore, be prepared to chastise our bodies, even to the point of undergoing martyrdom, if this is necessary, in order to avoid sin and to preserve our chastity.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/10/09/thought-for-the-day-9-october-the-second-sorrowful-mystery-the-scourging/

Posted in "Follow Me", CONFESSION/PENANCE, HEROSIM, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SIN

Thought for the Day – 24 September – The Sacrifices of Life

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

The Sacrifices of Life

“When we say that we must be prepared to make any sacrifice, even to die, rather than offend God and risk eternal damnation, we mean exactly what we say.
“If thy right eye is an occasion of sin to thee,” Jesus says in the Gospel, “pluck it out and cast it from thee; for it is better for thee that one of thy members should perish than that thy whole body should be thrown into hell. And if thy right hand is an occasion of sin to thee, cut it off and cast it from thee; for it is better for thee that one of thy members should be lost, than thy whole body shuld go into hell” (Mt 5:29-30).

We are prepared to do all this when there is a question of preserving mortal life; we are prepared to undergo an amputation in order to avoid death.
Are we prepared to do as much for eternal salvation?

Sometimes, when we wish to set ourselves free from the danger of sin, we must deprive ourselves of things that are dear to us; we must suppress our natural instincts and affections and we must impose on ourselves severe penances and bodily mortifications.
All this is demanded from us by Jesus in these words which seem hard and almost cruel but are none other than a just and necessary commandment.
In certain grave cases, heroism is necessary for all – now is the time of heroes!
Are we courageous for Christ and for eternal life with Him?

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/09/03/thought-for-the-day-3-september-the-sacrifices-of-life/

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on THE WORLD, St JOHN the BAPTIST

Thought for the Day – 24 June – Mortification and Penance

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

Mortification and Penance

“Our Lord reiterates many times, the command to do penance.
“Repent, for the kingdom of God is at hand” (Mt 4:17).
He even insists on penance as a necessary condition for salvation.
“Unless you repent, you will all perish in the same manner” (Lk 13:3).
It is a stern command and it may even seem cruel to some.
Why does the infinitely good God, Who is our loving Father, wish us to impose penances and sufferings on ourselves?
The answer is simple.
God makes us suffer and do penance because He knows that it is necessary for our salvation.
It is because He loves us and desires our welfare.

Mortification and suffering are necessary for two reasons.
They are particularly necessary because, we are all sinners and must expiate our sins.
Secondly, they are necessary because, without penance and suffering, we become attached to the world and forget all about Heaven, which is our real home.
In His love for us, therefore, God commands us to do penance.

The Saints were gluttons for penance and mortification and went as far as imposing on themselves, sufferings which horrify us today.
What are we doing in the way of penance?
Let us remember the command of Jesus and His precursor, St John the Baptist: “Unless you repent, you will all perish!” 
(Ibid).”

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/03/25/thought-for-the-day-25-march-mortification-and-penance/

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 21 June – St Aloysius Gonzaga

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

St Aloysius Gonzaga

“St Aloysius Gonzaga is one of the outstanding models of holy purity, for young and old alike.
We are told, that when he was nine years of age and went to the City of Florence, he went to the Church of the Annunziata, to pray before the picture of our Blessed Lady.
It was then, that he experienced the ardent desire to consecrate himself to God.
He was the eldest son of Prince Ferdinand de Gonzaga and, therefore, heir to his father’s title.
But, from this moment, he was determined to spend his life in the service of God.
He made a vow of perpetual chastity and placed himself under the protection of the Blessed Virgin.

Now, his life became a continual ascent towards perfection.
Hs chastity, which he had offered to Our Lady, remained spotless until his death.
The spirit of evil could make no headway against his angelic virtue.
This was a grace which he merited as a result of his prayers and penances.
He often spent three or four hours, kneeling in prayer and contemplation.
Even at night, he rose from his bed, in order to pray.
His mind and heart where in Heaven, rather than upon earth.
His prayer was an intimate conversation with Jesus, Mary and the Saints.
Innocent though he was, he practised servere mortifications.

Believing himself to be a great sinner, he scourged his body until his blood flowed freely and deprived himself of food and sleep.

Do we wish to preserve our purity and to become saints?
If so, let us remember that without prayer and mortification, this is impossible.
Jesus said to His disciples “that they must always pray and not lose heart” (Lk 18:1) “Pray” He said again, “that you may not enter into temptation” (Lk 22:40) and further, “Unless you repent, you will all perish” (Lk 13:5)
.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on TIME, QUOTES on VANITY

Thought for the Day – 20 March – The Shortness of Time

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

The Shortness of Time

“When we are dying, we shall think with sorrow of our past life.
Then we shall fully understand the fleeting nature of time and the vanity of worldly things.
The world, with its empty grandeur and hollow or sinful pleasures, will seem like a cloud, which passes, or, like a curtain, which is drawn to reveal the entrance to eternity.
Our only comfort will be the number of hours which we have given to prayer and mortification, to charitable work for our poor brothers in Christ and, to apostolic labours.
All the rest, will have passed away, never to return.
But the good which we have done, will remain as our supreme consolation in that final hour.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/01/05/thought-for-the-day-5-january-the-shortness-of-time/

Posted in CONFESSION, CONFESSION/PENANCE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SUFFERING

Thought for the Day – 13 March – Mortification and Penance

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

Mortification and Penance

“Our Lord reiterates many times, the command to do penance.
“Repent, for the kingdom of God is at hand” (Mt 4:17).
He even insists on penance as a necessary condition for salvation.
“Unless you repent, you will all perish in the same manner” (Lk 13:3).
It is a stern command and it may even seem cruel to some.
Why does the infinitely good God, Who is our loving Father, wish us to impose penances and sufferings on ourselves?
The answer is simple.
God makes us suffer and do penance because He knows that it is necessary for our salvation.
It is because He loves us and desires our welfare.

Mortification and suffering are necessary for two reasons.
They are particularly necessary because, we are all sinners and must expiate our sins.
Secondly, they are necessary because, without penance and suffering, we become attached to the world and forget all about Heaven, which is our real home.
In His love for us, therefore, God commands us to do penance.

The Saints were gluttons for penance and mortifiation and went as far as imposing on themelves, sufferings which horrify us today.
What are we doing in the way of penance?
Let us remember the command of Jesus: “Unless you repent, you will all perish!
(Ibid).”

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/03/25/thought-for-the-day-25-march-mortification-and-penance/

Posted in GOD ALONE!, LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MEDIOCRITY, QUOTES on MORALS, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SILENCE, QUOTES on TRUTH

Thought for the Day – 9 December – THE SALVATION OF SOULS

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

THE SALVATION OF SOULS

“If you still belong to the category of those who desire to be good and virtuous, remember that your obligations do not stop at this.
You are obliged to work as hard as possible, for the return of sinners to the fold and for the reawakening of the faith of the indifferent.

A man who really loves God, cannot remain inactive when he witnesses the desertion of so many of his fellow-men, the corruption of public and private morals and the continuous insults offered to the Creator of the human race.
ANYONE WHO REMAINS INACTIVE BECOMES AN ACCOMPLISH!

Everyone is obliged to do his best to prevent the spread of such errors and evils.
Do NOT make the excuse that there is very little which you can do.
Although the resources of those who are still faithful, may be individually insignificant, they become, when combined, an irresistible force.

Remember that you have three invincible weapons – prayer, mortification and sacrifice.
These are the weapons which can and should be employed in order to convert the world and to establuish the Kingdom of God.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in "Follow Me", GOD ALONE!, LENT 2021, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on FREEDOM, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on MEDITATION, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, The WORD, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Day Nineteen of our Lenten Journey – 7 March – ‘ Who is more at rest, than he who aims at nothing but God?’

Day Nineteen of our Lenten Journey – 7 March – The Third Sunday of Lent, Readings: Exodus 20:1-17, Psalms 19:8-11, 1 Corinthians 1:22-25, John 2:13-25

Imitating Christ with Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471)

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

Psalm 35(36)

“Zeal for your house will consume me.” John 2:17

O LORD, I am in sore need still of greater grace, if I am to arrive at the point, where no man and no created thing can be an obstacle to me. For as long as anything holds me back, I cannot freely fly to You. He that said “Oh that I had wings like a dove, that I might fly away and be at rest!“(Ps 55:7) desired to fly freely to You. Who is more at rest, than he who aims at nothing but God? And who more free, than the man who desires nothing on earth?

It is well, then, to pass over all creation, perfectly to abandon self and to see in ecstasy of mind that You, the Creator of all, have no likeness among all Your creatures and that unless a man be freed from all creatures, he cannot attend freely to the Divine. The reason why so few contemplative persons are found, is that so few know how to separate themselves entirely from what is transitory and created.

For this, indeed, great grace is needed, grace that will raise the soul and lift it up above itself. Unless a man be elevated in spirit, free from all creatures and completely united to God, all his knowledge and possessions are of little moment. He who considers anything great except the one, immense, eternal good will long be little and lie groveling on the earth. Whatever is not God is nothing and must be accounted as nothing.

There is great difference between the wisdom of an enlightened and devout man and the learning of a well-read and brilliant scholar, for the knowledge which flows down from divine sources is much nobler than that laboriously acquired by human industry.

Many there are, who desire contemplation but, who do not care to do the things, which contemplation requires. It is also a great obstacle to be satisfied with externals and sensible things and to have so little of perfect mortification. I know not what it is, or by what spirit we are led, or to what we pretend — we who wish to be called spiritual — that we spend so much labour and even more anxiety on things that are transitory and mean, while we seldom or never advert with full consciousness to our interior concerns.

Alas, after very little meditation we falter, not weighing our deeds by strict examination. We pay no attention to where our affections lie, nor do we deplore the fact that our actions are impure.

Remember that because all flesh had corrupted its course, the great deluge followed. Since, then, our interior affection is corrupt, it must be that the action which follows from it, the index as it were of our lack of inward strength, is also corrupt. Out of a pure heart come the fruits of a good life.

People are wont to ask how much a man has done but they think little of the virtue with which he acts. They ask: Is he strong? rich? handsome? a good writer? a good singer? or a good worker? They say little, however, about how poor he is in spirit, how patient and meek, how devout and spiritual. Nature looks to his outward appearance; grace turns to his inward being. The one often errs, the other trusts in God and is not deceived.
(Book 3 Ch 31)

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on MERIT, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, The LAST THINGS

Thought for the Day – 21 January –Fundamental Facts

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

Fundamental Facts

“Death is approaching.
How many years have we left?
How many months?
How many hours?
We do not know.
Perhaps this could be the last day or the last hour of our lives and, if that were true, in what state would we appear before the majesty of God?
How terrible if we were in mortal sin – we would be damned for all eternity!

But, even if we find ourselves in the state of grace, what merits have we to present to the eternal Judge?
What sacrifices have we made to prove our love for Him?
What mortifications and penances have we voluntarily undertake to purify ourselves of our sins?
What good works have we done, what alms have we given, what prayers have we said?
We may have to admit that we have wasted most of the time which God has given us in useless or even sinful occupations.
Let us treasure, at least, the years, days, or hours which God still wills to grant us, for our full conversion and for our spiritual perfection.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One here:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/09/26/thought-for-the-day-25-september-fundamental-facts/

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on FASTING, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, QUOTES on VIRTUE

Thought for the Day – 18 January – External Mortification

Thought for the Day – 18 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

External Mortification

“The interior mortification of self-love and of our sensual inclinations is not enough.
Bodily mortifiation is also necessary.
St Paul provides the reason. “the flesh lusts against the spirit and the spirit against the flesh” (Gal 5:17)

Original sin disturbed the perfect harmony which existed between man’s body and soul.
“I see another law in my members,” said the Apostle Paul, “warring against the law of my mind” (2 Cor 12:7).

There is no such struggle between the flesh and the spirit in brute animals, which are concerned only with the satisfaction of their sensible appetites.
It is because he is endowed with reason and an immortal soul, that man experiences this conflict.
The result is, that either the soul is conquered and becomes the slave of man’s lower instincts, or, the soul is victorious and uses the body as a instrument of virtue.

We can see from this, how necessary it is to mortify our bodies, so that they will not rebel against the mastery of the soul.
Our body will be either the faithful servant, or the relentless tyrant of the soul!

What penances do I perform?
When do I fast?
Little or never, perhaps?
If so, it is not surprising that my body rebels and causes me to fall into sin.
We must follow the example of Jesus and the Saints in this matter, if we wish to remain in the state of grace.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for the NEW YEAR, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CONSOLATION, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on TIME

Thought for the Day – 5 January – The Shortness of Time

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

The Shortness of Time

“We often complain about the swift passage of time.
Hours, days and years pass by, never to return.
When we think about the past, do we feel consoled or depressed?
How many hours have we spent on useless pursuits such as, idle conversation or excessive entertainment?
How many have we devoted to serious sin?
How many, on the other hand, have we spent in prayer, mortification or apostolic work?
How many have we devoted to helping our neighbour by our charitable assistance or advice?
Weigh it all up.
If we discover that the time uselessly or badly spent far outweighs the time spent to our own advantage or to the advantage of others, let us determine to make good the deficit.
Resolve to use God’s precious gift of time in a manner befitting a reasonable being and a Christian, who knows that he has been created for eternity.
“While we have time, let us do good” (Gal 6:10).
We shall be unable to do anything about it afterwards!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MEDIOCRITY, QUOTES on MORALS, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SILENCE, QUOTES on TRUTH

Thought for the Day – 9 December – THE SALVATION OF SOULS

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

THE SALVATION OF SOULS

“If you still belong to the category of those who desire to be good and virtuous, remember that your obligations do not stop at this.
You are obliged to work as hard as possible, for the return of sinners to the fold and for the reawakening of the faith of the indifferent.

A man who really loves God, cannot remain inactive when he witnesses the desertion of so many of his fellow-men, the corruption of public and private morals and the continuous insults offered to the Creator of the human race.
ANYONE WHO REMAINS INACTIVE BECOMES AN ACCOMPLISH!

Everyone is obliged to do his best to prevent the spread of such errors and evils.
Do NOT make the excuse that there is very little which you can do.
Although the resources of those who are still faithful, may be individually insignificant, they become, when combined, an irresistible force.

Remember that you have three invincible weaponsprayer, mortification and sacrifice.
These are the weapons which can and should be employed in order to convert the world and to establuish the Kingdom of God.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FREE WILL, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on INDIFFERENCE, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, SAINT of the DAY, The WILL of GOD

Quote/s of the Day – 18 September – St Joseph of Cupertino and Free Will – “Our Unique Possession”

Quote/s of the Day – 18 September – The Memorial of St Joseph of Cupertino OFM Conv. (1603-1663)

Free Will – “Our Unique Possession”

“Clearly, what God wants, above all,
is our will,
which we received as a free gift from God in creation
and possess as though our own.
When a man trains himself to acts of virtue,
it is with the help of grace from God,
from whom all good things come …
The will is what man has,
as his unique possession.”

St Joseph of Cupertino (1603-1663)

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

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

“God desires, not death but faith.
God thirsts, not for blood but for self-surrender.
God is appeased, not by slaughter
but by the offering of your free will.”

St Peter Chrysologus (c 400-450)
Bishop, Father & Doctor of Homilies

“Remove grace
and you have nothing,
whereby to be saved.
Remove free will
and you have nothing,
that could be saved.”

St Anselm (1033-1109)
Doctor of the Church

“Lord what will Thou have me do?
Behold the true sign of a totally perfect soul –
when one has reached the point
of giving up his will so completely
that he no longer seeks,
expects or desires
to do ought
but that which God wills.”

St Bernard (1090-1153)
Mellifluous Doctor

“Happiness is secured through virtue,
it is a good attained by man’s own will.”

St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)
Angelic Doctor

“But do not forget,
that all the saints cannot endear you to Christ
as much as you can yourself.
It is entirely up to you!”

St Cajetan (1480-1547)

“More determination is required
to subdue the interior man
than to mortify the body
and to break one’s will,
than to break one’s bones.”

St Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556)

“A man makes the most progress
and merits the most grace,
precisely in those matters,
wherein he gains
the greatest victories over self
and most mortifies his will.”

St Francis de Sales (1567-1622)
Doctor of Charity

“I will attempt, day-by-day,
to break my will into pieces.
I want to do God’s Holy Will,
not my own!”

By St Gabriel Francis Possenti
of Our Lady of Sorrows (1838-1862)

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on ANGER, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on VIRTUE

Thought for the Day – 14 August – Little Things

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

Little Things

little things - bacci 14 aug 2020

“Very few people are destined to great things by Almighty God.
More of us must offer ourselves in the relatively unimportant walks of life in which we have been placed by Providence.
Only some of the Saints were endowed with exceptional virtues and miraculous powers which attracted the attention and the admiration of the world.
In the normal course of events, Christian perfection must be acquired little by little, through the practice of ordinary virtues and unspectacular good actions.
There is always scope for these.
An upsurge of anger can be suppressed from the motive of the love of God and of our neighbour.
We can behave courteously towards people who are unsympathetic towards us or who offend us by their unmannerly conduct.
We can combat pride by acts of humility and egoism by acts of charity.
We can mortify ourselves in speech, in behaviour and at table and, we can give alms to the poor, good advice to the ignorant and comfort to the afflicted.

All these virtuous actions are insignificant in the eyes of men but, they are great in the sight of God.
The blades of grass and the flowers in the meadow are tiny things but, joined together, they constitute the pasture which provides nourishment for the herds and the flocks.
Let us perform these small actions everyday and so cultivate the ordinary virtues.
We shall attract the attention and favour of God, Who, will help us to advance, step-by-step, towards the peak of Christian perfection.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The LAST THINGS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 28 July – ‘So from now on, run well …’

One Minute Reflection – 28 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Tuesday of the Seventeenth week in Ordinary Time, year A, Readings: Jeremiah 14:17-22Psalm 79:8-91113Matthew 13:36-43

“The Son of Man will send his angels and they will gather out of his kingdom, all causers of sin and all law-breakers and throw them into the fiery furnace.   In that place, there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.   Then the righteous shall shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father.   He who has ears, let him hear.” … Matthew 13:41-43matthew 13 40-43 the sone of man will send his angels 28 july 2020

REFLECTION – “In your imagination see our Lord Jesus Christ seated on a throne of glory;   beside Him stand the seraphim, cherubim and each angelic order, serving Him with fear and trembling.   Then those who will have finished the combat, without allowing themselves to be drawn by any worldly pleasures or seduced by the attractions of this vain world, will hear the blessed voice of the Master.   “Then, he says, the righteous will shine like the sun” (Mt 13:43) when they have come from east and west, north and south to take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (cf. Mt 8:11) in an indescribable joy (cf. 1 Pt 1:8), when our King and Lord, will distribute gifts according to their merits.   Ah! my brothers and children. ah! how great and beautiful is the glory which the thrice blessed will enjoy and the saints who practised asceticism!   Yes, most certainly, each will receive the blessings promised, according to the degree to which they have pleased God. …

So from now on, run well (cf. Gal 5:7) and may the devil not bewitch you (cf. Gal 3:1) nor hinder you! …   May mercy, peace, charity, freedom from envy, from jealousy and ostentation come upon you, docility, friendly speech, solidarity, compassion towards each other, humility.   Live like this, act like this, praying, too, with all your heart for my humble self that I may not be thrown into the eternal fire.   May we all escape it, having been judged worthy of the kingdom of heaven, in Christ Himself, our God, to whom belongs all glory, honour, adoration, magnificence, together with the Father and the Holy Spirit, now and always, world without end.   Amen.” … St Theodore the Studite (759-826) Monk and Theologian – Catechesis 42

so from now on run well and may the devil - st theodore the studite 28 july 2020

PRAYER – All-powerful and ever-living God, splendour of true light and never-ending day, chase away the night of sin and fill our minds with the glory of Your coming.   Take away our heart of stone and give us a heart of flesh, help us in our battle with sin and the devil.   By our prayers, Your holy Sacraments and the strength of the Holy Spirit, may we be ever vigilant of the evil one.   By our Baptism in Your Son, we are Your children, grant us Your protection.   Kindly listen to the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary and all the saints and angels, whose prayers we beg, through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God for all eternity, amen.

bl virgin mother pray for us 28 july 2020

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Thought for the Day – 25 July – Purification

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

Purification

purification - bacci -25 july 2020

“We must recognise that we are all poor sinners in the sight of God.

Sacred Scripture warns us that “the just mans falls seven times” (Prov 24:16).
“If we say that we have no sin,” says St John, “we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us” (1 Jn 1:8).
Sin is the greatest evil because it offends God, our highest good and happiness.
It only needs our own malice for us to commit sin but, in order to make reparation for it and to redeem us from slavery, it was necessary for God to become man and to offer Himself as a victim of expiation for our sins.
Only a God-Man could have fully satisfied our debt, by offering Himself as a victim of reparation for His adopted brothers.

Jesus desires us to be associated with Him in His Passion, however (Cf Col 1:24).
Our justification cannot be something extrinsic to ourselves but should transform us and make us holy.
Our co-operation with divine grace is necessary for this purpose (1 Cor 15:10).
If we are in sin, we should not only repent but should purify ourselves by acts of penance.
Jesus Himself commands this.
“Unless you repent, you will all perish,” (Lk 13:5) “Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand” (Mt 3:2, 4:17).

We must make satisfaction for our sins, therefore, by voluntary co-operation with the grace of God.
Although God is infinitely good and merciful, He will not purify us without this co-operation on our part.
We can be purified by accepting the unavoidable tribulations of life with perfect resignation and by offering to God, our own voluntary mortifications and sacrifices.

Are we prepared to follow the example of the Saints in this matter?”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 21 July – The Royal Road of the Cross

Thought for the Day – 21 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Royal Road of the Cross

the royal road of the cross - bacci 22 july 2020

“The way of the Cross is the only road that leads to Heaven.
Consequently, a man who refuses to take this road cannot reach Heaven.
If there were another way, Jesus would have told us about it.
Instead, He insisted that if anyone wished to go after Him, he would have to deny himself, take up his cross daily and follow Him (Lk 9:23).

Our Lord did more than preach this way to us, for He gave us an example of the manner in which to follow it.
Jesus could have redeemed us by a single act of His human-divine will, simply by offering Himself to the Eternal Father in expiation of our sins.
But He chose to carry the weight of the Cross, to climb the Hill of Calvary and, to die in agony.

We must ascend our own Calvary, if we wish to imitate and follow Jesus.
Our divine Redeemer fulfilled perfectly, in His Passion, all the works of perfection which He had preached in the Gospel.
Let the Passion of Christ be our rule of life.
Let us be glad, when we seem to be more like Him and sorrowful, whenever we seem to be departing from the example which He set us.

Suffering should be a source of consolation for us, for it makes us more like Jesus, as long as we endure it with resignation and with love.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 18 July – Our Passions

Thought for the Day – 18 July – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Our Passions

our passions - bacci - 18 july 2020

“Our Passions are not essentially sinful.
They can open the way to evil but, they can also lead us towards perfection.
Everything depends on how we control and direct them.
They are impulses which are, at the same time valuable and, dangerous.

Human nature was wounded as a result of original sin.
The soul was disobedient to God and the lower faculties rebelled against right reason.
Hence, the disturbance of our passions.
What should our attitude be in regard to this problem?
Should we suppress or obliterate our passions, as some of the Stoics would have done?
It is, in fact, impossible to do this, for our passions are innate natural forces which cannot be destroyed.
What we should do, is guide and control them.
If the dykes are burst, a strongly flowing river can cause havoc but, if it’s course is wisely directed, it irrigates the soil and makes it fertile.
It is the same with our natural inclinations, which “can be used to form a saint but, can also make a brigand” (Mariano Cordovani OP, Breviario Spirituale, p88).

A man with a fiery and aggressive temperament, can use his natural impulses under God’s guidance, to combat vice in himself and in others.
One who is haughty and ambitious by nature, can convert his ambition into a quest for the true and lasting glory of Heaven.
Finally, a passionate man who feels the need to love and to be loved, can find a partial remedy in Christian friendship.
Most of all, however, he can find repose in the love of God.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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One Minute Reflection – 1 July – ‘Alas, my dear brethren, we are poor stuff …’

One Minute Reflection – 1 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Wednesday of the Thirteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: Amos 5: 14-15, 21-24,  Psalm 50: 7, 8-9, 10-11, 12-13, 16bc-17, Matthew 8: 28-34 and the Memorial of St Junipero Serra (1713-1784) and Blessed Ignatius “Nazju” Falzon OFS (1813-1865)

And he said to them:  Go.   But they going out went into the swine and behold, the whole herd ran violently down a steep place, into the sea and they perished in the waters.   And behold the whole city went out to meet Jesus and when they saw him, they besought him, that he would depart from their coasts.. … Matthew 8:32,34… Matthew 8:32-34

matthew 8 32 and he said to them go but they going out went into the swine 1 july 2020

REFLECTION – “Dear Lord, what we are capable of when we are left to ourselves!   There are some who, in their own words, are envious of the saints who did great penances.   They believe that they could do as well.   When we read the lives of some of the martyrs, we would, we think, be ready to suffer all that they suffered for God, the moment is short lived, we say, for an eternity of reward.   But what does God do to teach us to know ourselves or, rather, to know that we are nothing? This is all He does – He allows the Devil to come a little closer to us. Look at this Christian who a moment ago was quite envious of the hermit who lived solely on roots and herbs and who made the stern resolution to treat his body as harshly.   Alas!   A slight headache, a prick of a pin, makes him, as big and strong is he is, sorry for himself. He is very upset.   He cries with pain.   A moment ago he would have been willing to do all the penances of the anchorites — and the merest trifle makes him despair!

Look at this other one, who seems to want to give his whole life for God, whose ardour all the torments there are cannot damp.   A tiny bit of scandalmongering …. a word of calumny …. even a slightly cold reception or a small injustice done to him …. a kindness returned by ingratitude …. immediately gives birth in him to feelings of hatred, of revenge, of dislike, to the point, often, of his never wishing to see his neighbour again, or at least. of treating him coldly with an air which shows very plainly what is going on in his heart.   And how many times is this his waking thought, just as it was the thought that almost prevented him from sleeping?   Alas, my dear brethren, we are poor stuff and we should count very little upon our good resolutions!” … St John Marie Baptiste Vianney (1786-1859)

a slight headache a prick of apin - st john vianney mattew 8 28-34 two demonics and the pigs swine 1 july 2020

PRAYER – All-powerful God, to serve You is to reign.   Your love gave St Juniperro Serra and Blessed Nazju Falzon, the courage to proclaim the truth of Christ and to preach and live in the light of the Kingdom.  Grant that by their prayers, our lives may bear witness to the faith we profess and our love bring others, to the peace and joy of Your gospel. 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.  Amenstjuniperoserra-pray-for-us - 1 July 2017 and 2020

bl nazju falzon pray for us 1 july 2020

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Thought for the Day – 22 June – Interior Mortification

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

Interior Mortification

anyone who is full of himself and of worldly matters - bacci interior mortification 22 june 2020

“In the spiritual life, as in the physical order, death is the beginning of life.
“Unless the grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone.   But, if it dies, it brings forth much fruit.   He who loves his life, loses it and he who hates his life in this world, keeps it unto life everlasting” (Jn 12:24-25).

This passage of the Gospel, epitomises the doctrine of Christian mortification – it is necessary to die to ourselves, in order to live in God.
Anyone who is full of himself and of worldly matters, has no room in his heart for God.
It is not possible, as St Augustine points out, to fill a vase with earth and then to fill it with water.
There is no room left for the water and, if a little of it enters the vase, it is no longer pure water but muddy!

We must empty ourselves of ourselves and of worldly things, in order to fill ourselves with God.
Jesus told us this quite clearly. “If anyone wishes to come after me, let him deny himself” (Mt 16:24).

If anyone denies himself in order to do God’s will in all things, he has achieved real interior mortification.
Moreover, he has perfect peace, which consists in being established in the love of God.

This does not mean that all self-love is wrong.
In fact, there are two kinds of self-love.
We can love our true good, which is God and, therefore, desire to live in harmony with this supreme good in this life in order to enjoy it as our eternal reward.
This kind of self-love is founded on the love of God, Who is the main reason why we love ourselves.
But if we prefer our own pleasure and satisfaction to God, then our self-love is disproportionate and wrong and leads us into sin.

The first thing we must do, therefore, is to mortify our inordinate self-love.
In other words, we must deny ourselves in matters where self-love is keeping us apart from God, Whom we should love more than anything else in life.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 25 March – Mortification and Penance

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

Mortification and Penance

“In Christian teaching, death is the beginning of life.
“Unless the grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies,” Jesus said, “it remains alone. But if it dies, it brings forth much fruit. He who loves his life, loses it and he, who hates his life in this world, keeps it unto life everlasting” (Jn 12:24-25).
This paradox of dying to this life in order to live in Heaven, was enacted in a wonderful way in the lives of Jesus and of the Saints.
It must be put into effect in our lives also, if we are to be genuine Christians.
Jesus shed His precious blood for us and His death was the beginning of His triumph.
The Apostles, Martyrs and Saints, gave their lives for Christ and received, as their reward, the happy and eternal life of Heaven.
By dying to our own ego and to our passions, we shall find the true life of Christ.
We must die to ourselves, so that Christ may live in us, as He lived in St Paul.
We must die to pride, so that Christian humility may live in us;
we must die to anger, so that patience may live in us;
we must die to lust, so that purity and innocence may live in us
and, we must die to selfishness, so that charity may live in us.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Second Thought for the Day – 8 February – Blessed Esperanza’s Spiritual Testament

Second Thought for the Day – 8 February – The Memorial of Blessed Maria Esperanza de Jesus (1893-1983)

Extract from Blessed Esperanza’s Spiritual Testament

“In the name of the Father, of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, I write to my beloved sons and my beloved daughters this Testament.

I leave entrusted to the Most Holy Virgin, all my sons and daughters and my two beloved Congregations and all the poor people received in them.

I wish to leave to my sons and daughters the precious inheritance that I have, freely and without any merit, received from the Good Jesus.

Recommendations that I make to my beloved sons and to my beloved daughters:
Be humble, love one another, eradicate from your heart the rash judgements, never look for responsibilities or high positions, stay in the hands of obedience like little children; never have discussions or quarrels, never occupy yourselves with things for which you are not responsible, be very charitable and attached to prayer, because the means to obtain grace and glory is prayer;  always follow the narrow path of mortification; work to acquire detachment and disdain with respect to yourselves; you will succeed in this with the knowledge of Our God, His love and the knowledge of your nothingness and your miseries; always and in everything, try to accomplish the Will of Our God and always seek His glory and not yours.

Keep yourselves free, my children, from all greed, try hard to have no attachment to earthly things, because the Son and Handmaid of Merciful Love must be occupied with charity, divine and spiritual things and you will arrive there easily if your hearts are strongly attached to the Good Jesus.

Walk with great attention in order to not become implicated in cares foreign to your vocation and to your state, never get involved in secular business contrary to your vocation, not even in the name of charity or prudence.

The Request I address to the Good Jesus, at the time of the death of my body and the life of my soul, by the mercy and the love of my God. I ask that the Good Jesus personally and the glory of God be the cause of the actions of all the sons and daughters and that He always be their Advocate and defend them against the enemies of the respective Congregations, always repeating in their favour: “Father, forgive them; they do not know what they are doing!”

Jesus, at the time of death, see to it that all the sons and daughters can say, full of love and confidence, what I say to You in these moments, with hope in Your charity, love and mercy:  “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.”

Blessed Esperanza de Jesus, Pray for Us!

bl esperanza de jesus pray for us no 2 8 feb 2020

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Thought for the Day – 6 January – Giving Ourselves, Our Prayer, Our Mortification

Thought for the Day – 6 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971) – First Day after Epiphany

Giving Ourselves, Our Prayer, Our Mortificationthere can be no sanctity without prayer - bacci 6 jan 2020

The Magi gave Jesus material gifts also, as symbols of their complete dedication to Him.
They gave Him gold, because He was a king,
incense, because He was God
and myrrh, because He was man.
We often say that we love God and wish to serve and obey Him in all things.
But when we see that this entails sacrifice, we forget our promises!

We must ask ourselves if we are prepared to offer Jesus gold, that is, to offer Him everything we possess for the promotion of His glory, for the spread of His Kingdom and for the relief of His poor, in whom we ought, always, to see and love Christ Himself.
We must examine ourselves thoroughly on this.
It is easy to find excuses for not giving to God and to His poor in accordance with our means.

We should offer also, the incense of our adoration and unceasing prayer.
There can be no sanctity without prayer.
There can be no real Christians without sanctity.

Finally, we must offer the myrrh of our mortification.
Mortification, as St Vincent de Paul has said, is the ABC of Christian perfection.
St Paul exhorts us, to carry always in ourselves the mortification of Jesus.
If we are not mortified, we can never be holy and can never share the joy which the Magi experienced as they lay prostrate before the cradle of our Divine Redeemer.

Definition of Mortification:
Mortification is the feeling of being completely humiliated.
The word mortification has its roots in the Latin word for “death,” mors.

The original meaning of mortification is religious, in Christianity the meaning is “putting your sin to death”.
In Christian practice, this has varied from denying oneself pleasurable things, like certain foods, to inflicting physical pain on oneself.
The religious reason for this kind of mortification is to cause the “death” of sins — or desires — of the body.