Posted in LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on VIRTUE

Thought for the Day – 12 May – “All Generations Shall Call Me Blessed”

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

“All Generations Shall Call Me Blessed”

“It is related in the Gospel, that once a certain occasion, a woman in the crowd, was roused by the preaching and miracles of Jesus and cried out: “Blessed is the womb that bore thee and the breasts that nursed thee.” But Jesus replied: “Rather blessed are they who hear the word of God and keep it” (Lk 11:27-28).
These words take nothing from the glory of the Mother of God.
They were not intended for her but, for us.
She was great and holy, not only because she was chosen to be the Mother of the Word Incarnate but also because she perfected herself in virtue by carrying out, in everything, the teaching of her divine Son, Jesus.

We cannot follow her as far as her high dignity of Mother of God but we can follow her in her heroic practice of virtue.
Admittedly, we shall not be able to climb to an equal height but, with the help of God and under Mary’s own protection, we can and should, walk in her footsteps.

We can imitate her humility, her purity, her lively faith, her burning love for God and for her neighbour and her spirit of constant prayer and union with God.
If we do this, we shall always feel that she is by our side as our loving Mother, who is eager to help us to become holy.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/05/12/thought-for-the-day-12-may-all-generations-shall-call-me-blessed/

Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CHASTITY, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Thought for the Day – 6 May – The Virginal Purity of Mary

Thought for the Day – 6 May – “Mary’s Month” Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Virginal Purity of Mary

“Purity is the most beautiful of virtues.
It is a virtue which is admired by God and by men, even by the most corrupt.
It is often said, that it makes us like the angels but in fact, looking at it in a particular way, it makes us superior to the angels.
Since they have no bodies, the angels cannot sin against purity, while we have to fight many battles and overcome many temptations, in order to preserve our chastity.
Jesus had a very special love for this virtue.
He chose to be born of a virgin and, He showed a particular affection for St John, who was a dedicated celibate.
On one occasion, He placed His Hands on the head of a little child and said: “Unless you turn and become like little children, you will not enter into the kingdom of Heaven “(Mt:18.3)

Unfortunately, the virtue of purity is as fragile as it is beautiful.
It can be lost in a single moment of weakness.
We must love ths virtue as Mary loved it.
We must be prepared to make any sacrifice, even the most heroic, rather than lose it.
Worldly charm and beauty attract us and the devil works hard to control our imagination and our affections.
On account of the disturbance of original sin, the flesh is like a terrible weight retarding our spiritual advancement.
Sometimes it seems as if it is irresistibly drawing us towards the abyss of impurity.
But we need not be dragged down, if we are prepared to fly from the occasions of sin and to pray to God and to our heavenly Mother for her intercession.
We must always act at once, for there is no time to dally.
It is fatal to remain inactive and to allow temptation to make its way into our soul.
This kind of battle, said St Francis de Sales, is won only by soldiers who flee.
We must fly from the occasions of sin, no matter what sacrifice this entails.
Jesus has warned us, that it is better to enter Heaven without a hand or a foot, than to be cast into hell.

We know the remedies – instant flight, heroic sacrifice and constant prayer.
We can leave the rest to the grace of God and to the maternal protection of Mary.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/05/06/thought-for-the-day-6-may-the-virginal-purity-of-mary

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, LENT 2021, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, The HEART, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Day Nine of our Lenten Journey – 25 February – Thursday of the First week of Lent – Bring to God a Clean and Open Heart

Day Nine of our Lenten Journey – 25 February – Thursday of the First week of Lent, Readings: Esther C:12, 14-16, 23-25, Psalms 138:1-2,2-3, 7-8, Matthew 7:7-12

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)

“Ask and it will be given you, seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you.” – Matthew 7:7

When Jesus is near, all is well and nothing seems difficult.
When He is absent, all is hard.
When Jesus does not speak within, all other comfort is empty.
But if He says only a word, it brings great consolation.

[…] How dry and hard you are without Jesus!
How foolish and vain if you desire anything but Him! Is it not a greater loss than losing the whole world?
For what, without Jesus, can the world give you?
Life without Him is a relentless hell but living with Him is a sweet paradise.
If Jesus be with you, no enemy can harm you.

He who finds Jesus finds a rare treasure, indeed, a good above every good, whereas he who loses Him, loses more than the whole world.
The man who lives without Jesus is the poorest of the poor, whereas no-one is so rich, as the man who lives in His grace.

It is a great art to know how to converse with Jesus and great wisdom to know how to keep Him.
Be humble and peaceful and Jesus will be with you.
Be devout and calm and He will remain with you.

[…] You cannot live well without a friend and if Jesus be not your friend above all else, you will be very sad and desolate.
Thus, you are acting foolishly if you trust or rejoice in any other.
Choose the opposition of the whole world, rather than offend Jesus.
Of all those who are dear to you, let Him be your special love.
Let all things be loved for the sake of Jesus but Jesus, for His own sake.

[…] Never wish that anyone’s affection be centred in you, nor let yourself be taken up with the love of anyone but let Jesus be in you and in every good man.
Be pure and free within, unentangled with any creature.
You must bring to God a clean and open heart if you wish to attend and see how sweet the Lord is.

Truly you will never attain this happiness, unless His grace prepares you and draws you on, so that you may forsake all things to be united with Him alone.
When the grace of God comes to a man, he can do all things, but when it leaves him, he becomes poor and weak, abandoned, as it were, to affliction.

Yet, in this condition he should not become dejected or despair.
On the contrary, he should calmly await the will of God and bear whatever befalls him, in praise of Jesus Christ.
For after winter comes summer, after night, the day and after the storm, a great calm.
(Book 2 Ch 8:1-5)

Posted in "Follow Me", LENT 2021, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on FASTING, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on VIRTUE, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Day Three of our Lenten Journey – 18 February – Friday after Ash Wednesday – ‘… We do little or nothing …’

Day Three of our Lenten Journey – 18 February – Friday after Ash Wednesday, Readings: Isaiah 58:1-9, Psalms 51:3-4, 5-6, 18-19, Matthew 9:14-15

Imitating Christ with Thomas à Kempis CRSA (1380-1471)

In Your Light Lord, we see light

“Then they will fast” – Matthew 9:15

Consider the glowing examples of the holy Fathers, in whom shone true religion and perfection; compared with them, we do little or nothing. Alas, how can our life be compared with theirs!
The Saints and friends of Christ served Our Lord in hunger and thirst, in cold and nakedness, in toil and weariness: in watching and fasting, in prayer and meditation, in persecutions and insults without number (Heb.9:38, 1 Cor.4:11).

How countless and constant were the trials endured by the Apostles, Martyrs, Confessors, Virgins and all those others, who strove to follow in the footsteps of Christ.
These all hated their lives in this world, that they might keep them to life eternal (Jn 12:35).
How strict and self-denying was the life of the holy Fathers in the desert! How long and grievous the temptations they endured!
How often they were assaulted by the Devil!
How frequent and fervent their prayers to God! How strict their fasts! How great their zeal and ardour for spiritual progress!
How valiant the battles they fought to overcome their vices!
How pure and upright their intention towards God!

All day long they laboured and the night they gave to continuous prayer; even as they worked, they never ceased from mental prayer.
They spent all their time with profit, every hour seeming short in the service of God.
They often forgot even their bodily needs in the great sweetness of contemplation.
They renounced all riches, dignities, honours, friends and kindred; they desired to possess nothing in this world.
Scarcely would they take the necessities of life and only with reluctance would they provide for the needs of the body.
Thus, though destitute of earthly goods, they were abundantly rich in grace and all virtues.
Outwardly they were poor but inwardly they were refreshed with grace and heavenly consolation.
They were strangers to the world but to God, they were dear and familiar friends (Ex 33:11).
To themselves they were nothing but in the eyes of God, they were precious and beloved.
Grounded in true humility, they lived in simple obedience, they walked in charity and patience; (Eph 5:2) and thus daily increased in the Spirit, and received great grace from God.

… Oh, the carelessness and coldness of this present time!
Sloth and lukewarmness makes life wearisome for us and we soon lose our early fervour!
May the longing to grow in grace not remain dormant in you …
(Book 1, Ch 18:1-4a,6)

Posted in "Follow Me", DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT, LENT 2021, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on FASTING, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 18 February – Fast!

Quote/s of the Day – 18 February – Friday after Ash Wednesday, Readings: Isaiah 58:1-9, Psalms 51:3-4, 5-6, 18-19, Matthew 9:14-15

“Then they will fast”

Matthew 9:15

“The days will come,
when the bridegroom is taken away from them
and then they will fast in that day.”

Mark 2:20

“Fasting cleanses the soul,
raises the mind,
subjects one’s flesh to the spirit,
renders the heart contrite and humble,
scatters the clouds of concupiscence,
quenches the fire of lust
and kindles the true light of chastity.
Enter again into yourself!”

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

“Prayer, mercy and fasting:
These three are one
and they give life to each other.
Fasting is the soul of prayer;
mercy is the lifeblood of fasting.
Let no-one try to separate them;
they cannot be separated.
If you have only one of them,
or not all together, you have nothing.”

“So if you pray, fast;
if you fast, show mercy;
if you want your petition to be heared,
hear the petition of others.
When you fast, see the fasting of others.
If you hope for mercy, show mercy.
If you look for kindness, show kindness.
If you want to receive, give.”

St Peter Chrysologus (400-450)
Bishop of Ravenna
Father and Doctor of Homilies

“Let my fasting be based on temperance,
my soul in a state of grace,
my intention solely to please God,
then my efforts will ring true,
fit to enlarge my store of charity.”

St Francis de Sales (1567-1622)
Bishop of Geneva OFM, Cap.
Doctor Caritatis

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for the NEW YEAR, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST

Thought for the Day – 9 January – “Lord, that I May See!”

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

“Lord, that I May See!”

“Spiritually, we are all blind to a greater or lesser extent.
Do we understand the infinite truth, beauty and goodness of God, in Whom our true happiness consists?
Do we understand the emptiness of the world, despite the glory of its transient beauty, which can never satisfy our hearts?
Do we understand our own nothingness and our dependence on God for light and grace?
If we understood all this, then the scales of our spiritual blindness would fall from our eyes.
Our faith would be even purer and more heartfelt than that of the poor blind man of Jericho.
If we do not possess this lively faith and our eyes are dazzled by the glittering vanities of the world, let us turn to Jesus and beseech Him: “Lord, that I may see!”
Only the light which comes from You is the true light which illumines every man who comes into this world (Jn 1:9).”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for the NEW YEAR, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on GRATITUDE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MERIT, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on VIRTUE, QUOTES on WORK/LABOUR, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE

Thought for the Day – 7 January – Merit and the Love of God

Thought for the Day – 7 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971) The Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord

Merit and the Love of God

“The more we know, writes St Catherine of Siena, the more we love and the more we love, the more we receive.
Our merit, she concludes, increases in accordance with the measure of our love (Dialogues, c 131).
We tend to judge men on the strength of their achievements and to judge ourselves, according to the degree of success which we have attained.
Our standards could hardly be more false.
How much soever each one is in Thy eyes,” the author of The Imitation of Christ cries out to God in the words of St Francis, “so much is he and no more” (Bk III, c 50).

It is not success which counts with God and still less, human esteem.
What matters with God, is our intention of pleasing Him and of working for His glory, from the motive of pure love.
If we are successful in our work, let us praise God.
If we are unsuccessful, let us thank Him, just the same.
Our merit is commensurate with our love for God.
If we love Him very much, we shall work hard and make sacrifices for His sake.
We must work to satisfy God alone, however and not, for ourselves.
If we work for any other purpose, all our labour is wasted.
We sow abundantly and reap little or nothing.
God alone matters.
If we work only for Him, we shall be blessed by Him and shall reap the fruits of everlasting life.
Amen!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CHASTITY, QUOTES on PURITY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The HEART

Thought for the Day – 27 December – St John the Apostle and Evangelist

Thought for the Day – 26 December – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971) – Feast of St John the Apostle and Evangelist, the Beloved

St John the Apostle and Evangelist

“St John was the beloved disciple of Jesus Christ.
He was allowed, along with St Peter and St James, to enjoy the glory of the Transfiguration and, he was invited with them into the Garden of Gethsemane to witness the agonu ofour divine Redeemer.
In the Cenacle, moreover, after he had received the Blessed Eucharist, he was the only one of the Apostles privileged to rest his head on the breast of Jesus.
He stood at the foot of the Cross on Mount Calvary and heard his Master entrust to him, with His dying breath, the most precious treasure which still remained to Him on earth, the Blessed Virgin Mary.
“Son, behold thy Mother.”

It is true, that Jesus loved all His Apostles, to all of whom He granted the happiness of enjoying His company, listening to His teaching and witnessing, His miracles.
Even so, He had a special affection for St John.
This was because John was a virgin when Jesus called him and remained so, all his life.
The state of virginity is especially pleasing to God.
It makes us like the Angels and, in a sense, superior to them, since these pure spirits are naturally chaste and, we can only succeed in being so, by means of great self-control.
“Blessed are the pure of heart,” says Jesaus in the Gospel, “for they shall see God” (Mt 5:8).

The privilege of the vision of God is attributed, in a special way, to the pure of heart.
Therefore, St John, the virgin Apostle, begins his Gospel with a descriptio of the intimate life of the eternal God.
“In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word, was God” (Jn 1:1).
He soars above the earth like an eagle, as St Jerome observes and penetrates into the presence of God Himself.

We know that we shall never be called to scale such heights.
We may not even have a vocation to live as virgins.
But, we are all required to be clean of heart.
Purity is a virtue which all Christians should possess in whatever manner is appropriate to their position in life.
Let us examine ourselves strictly on this matter and make suitable resolutions for the future.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in ADVENT QUOTES, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN PRAYERS, POETRY, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The INCARNATION, The NATIVITY of JESUS

Quote/s of the Day – 23 December – “If you want…”

Quote/s of the Day – 23 December – O Emmanuel

“In adoring our Saviour’s birth,
it is our origin that we celebrate.
Christ’s temporal generation
is the source of the Christian people,
the birth of His Mystical Body.
All of us encounter in this Mystery,
a new birth in Christ.”

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

“If you want,
the Virgin will come walking down the road
pregnant with the Holy,
and say, “I need shelter for the night.
Please take me into your heart, my time is so close. ”

Then, under the roof of your soul,
you will witness the sublime intimacy, the divine, the Christ,
taking birth forever, as she grasps your hand for help;
for each of us is the midwife of God, each of us.

Yet there, under the dome of your being,
does creation come into existence eternally, through your womb,
dear pilgrim – the sacred womb of your soul,
as God grasps our arms for help;
for each of us is His beloved servant never far.

If you want, the Virgin will come walking down the street
pregnant with Light and sing…”

St John of the Cross (1542-1591)
Mystical Doctor of the Church

“No-one can celebrate
a genuine Christmas
without being truly poor.
The self-sufficient, the proud,
those who, because they have everything,
look down on others,
those who have no need,
even of God- for them
there will be no Christmas.
Only the poor, the hungry,
those who need someone
to come on their behalf,
will have that Someone.
That Someone is God.
Emmanuel.
God-with-us.
Without poverty of spirit
there can be no abundance of God.”

St Óscar Romero (1917-1980)
Priest Martyr

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HOLY SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on MORALS, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY EUCHARIST

One Minute Reflection – 27 October – ‘The doctrine of Christ is fittingly called leaven because the bread is Christ.’ – Luke 13:20-21

One Minute Reflection – 27 October – Tuesday of the Twenty-eighth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Ephesians 5:21-33,Psalms 128:1-23,4-5Luke 13:18-21 and the Memorial of St Emeline of Boulancourt (c 1115-c 1178)

Again he said, “To what shall I compare the kingdom of God?
It is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of wheat flour until the whole batch of dough was leavened.”
… Luke 13:20-21

REFLECTION – “There are three measures – of the flesh, of the soul and of the spirit. This is truer of the spirit in which we all live. The woman, who prefigures the church, mixes with them the virtue of spiritual doctrine, until the whole hidden inner person of the heart is leavened and the heavenly bread arises to grace.

The doctrine of Christ is fittingly called leaven because the bread is Christ. The apostle said, “For we, being many, are one bread, one body.” Leavening happens, when the flesh does not lust against the Spirit, nor the Spirit against the flesh. We mortify the deeds of the flesh and, the soul, aware that through the breath of God, it has received the breath of life, shuns the earthly germs of worldly needs.” – St Ambrose (340-397) (Exposition of the Gospel of Luke, 7)

PRAYER – True light of the world, Lord Jesus Christ, as You enlighten all men for their salvation, give us grace, we pray, to herald Your coming by preparing the ways of justice and of peace. Help us Lord, that we may sprout and bear fruit, fitting to grow and be a home of comfort to our neighbour. By the prayers of St Emeline of Boulancourt, may we too be beacons of Your Light and of the glory of Your Kingdom. Through Jesus our Lord, Who lives and reigns with the Father and the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.

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

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

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

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

Luke 11:42

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, MODESTY, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on PURITY

Thought for the Day – 30 September – Christian Modesty

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

Christian Modesty

“We are told, that one day in the presence of St Francis de Sales, the beauty of a certain noble lady, his cousin, was being described. (Spirito p Vii, c 10)
The Saint described with simplicity: “I’ve heard this said by others also.”
Somebody remarked, that he himself often saw this young relative of his and, therefore, there was no need for others to tell him about her.
The Saint replied with the same holy simplicity: “It is true that I see her often but, I never stare at her.”
This simple but wise reply, underlines the difference between seeing and looking.

We are often obliged, in the ordinary course of living, or by reason of our position, to see many things which could be dangerous to our spiritual welfare.
There are many ugly things around us, although sometimes externally beautiful, which we cannot help seeing.
At home, on the street, in society, almost everywhere, we meet persons and things which constitute a threat to our virtue.
What are we to do?
We must see because, very often, we cannot help it but, we must never stare.

In other words, we should never fix our eyes on anything which would seriously disturb us.
If we experience the beginnings of any such disturbance, we should look elsewhere at once, raising our minds to God in silent prayer.
Delay could cost us our purity.
To guard it, we need the holy virtue of modesty, which St Thomas Aquinas calls, the moderating virtue (Summa Theologiae, II-II, q 160, a 1).
Not only, the Angelic Doctor observes, does it moderate but, it also directs our internal actions as well as our external ones, in such a way, that he, who possesses this beautiful virtue, has perfect control over his outward behaviour and over his inward dispositions (Ibid, q 160, a 2).”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in Hail MARY!, MARIAN TITLES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on ENVY, QUOTES on GOSSIP, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on JUDGING, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 12 September – ‘… Perfume is not to be found in mud…’

One Minute Reflection – 12 September – Saturday of the Twenty Third week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 10:14-22Psalms 116:12-1317-18Luke 6:43-49 and The Memorial of The Most Holy Name of Mary

“A good person, out of the store of goodness in his heart, produces good” … Luke 6:45

REFLECTION – “Those who conceal their hypocrisy beneath feigned love, bless outwardly with their mouths but curse inwardly.
Those who have acquired love, endure patiently the injuries and sufferings that their enemies inflict on them.
Love alone harmoniously joins all created things with God and with each other.
A person who does not tolerate suspicion or disparagement of others, possesses true love.
Someone who does nothing to dispel love, is precious in the sight of God and the world.
True words from a pure conscience betoken unfeigned love.
If you tell your brother how someone else is denigrating him, you conceal your own envy under the guise of goodwill. (…)
Guard yourself from hatred and dissipation and you will not be impeded at the time of prayer.
Perfume is not to be found in mud nor the fragrance of love in the soul of a rancorous person. (…)
Anyone who does not envy the spiritually mature and is merciful to the wicked, has attained an equal love for all. (…)
Do not trust a thought that would judge your neighbour: for it is the person who is a store of evil who thinks evil thoughts (Mt 6:21; 12:35).” … St Thalassios the Libyan (5th Century) – Priest and Abbot in Libya (see a little biography of him below).

PRAYER – Heavenly Father, assist us at all times we pray, to obtain a spirit of worthy penance, for our sins and that of all the world. To the invocation of Your Divine Son, Jesus, we call on the intercession of His holy Mother, to aid us on our pilgrimage. With great affection and confidence, we honour the Holy Hearts and invoke the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, to be our constant source of pure assistance and succour that we might bear fruits worthy of their Names. Blessed be the Name of Mary! Amen

Saint Thalassius the Libyan undertook the call of God to life as a hermit in the fifth century.
Thalassius is recorded to have entered into solitude at a young age near a village named Targala in Byzantine Syria. He is dwelt there living the ascetic life with no shelter for nearly forty years.
His was a soul filled with humbleness, simplicity and a gentle nature. God manifested in the saint the gifts of powerful intercession and healing for which he gained considerable renown.
In time, many came to join Thalassius in the eremitic life and he welcomed them as he would welcome Christ, building them cells with his own hands.
Saint Thalassius, Hermit of Syria is said to have died peacefully and is commemorated on 22 February.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, MARIAN TITLES, MATER DOLOROSA - Mother of SORROWS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ANGER, QUOTES on ENVY, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on JUDGING, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, SEPTEMBER-The SEVEN SORROWS of MARY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 11 September – The log and the speck – Luke 6:39-42

One Minute Reflection – 11 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary” – Friday of the Twenty Third week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 9:16-19, 22b-27, Psalms 84:3, 4, 5-6, 12, Luke 6:39-42

“You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye and then you will see clearly, to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye.” … Luke 6:42

REFLECTION – “The Lord in this passage warns us against rash and unjust judgement. He wants us to act with a heart that is single and intent on God alone. Because there are many things about which, it would be rash to pass judgement, since we do not know with what kind of a heart they are done. For the most part, those who readily judge and condemn, are those who love to find fault and to condemn rather than to reprove and correct – and this is the vice of pride or envy. (…)

So if, for instance, someone sins through anger, you would reprove him through hatred. There is as much difference between anger and hatred, as there is between a speck and a beam. For hatred is an inveterate anger which, in time, has come to such a pitch that it may aptly be called a beam. Even though you are angry with someone, you may nevertheless wish them to amend. But if you hate someone, you cannot wish them to change for the better (…) First rid yourself of hatred, and then you will immediately be able to correct the person you love.” … St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor of Grace – Commentary on the Sermon on the Mount, 19,63

PRAYER – Lord God, in Your wisdom, You created us, in love. By Your providence, You rule us, in love. Penetrate our inmost being with the holy light of Your Son. Penetrate our hearts with the overwhelming love for Your love, so that we may weep in consolation. May the Light that is Jesus Christ our Lord, enlighten our hearts that we may see clearly the way we should tread. May the prayers of Your holy Angels, Martyrs, Saints and our Sorrowful Martyr Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary, be our guiding inspiration. Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever amen.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on VANITY, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 25 August – “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. ” Matthew 23:23

One Minute Reflection – 25 August – Tuesday of the Twenty First week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 2 Thessalonians 2: 1-3a14-17Psalms 96: 1011-12,13Matthew 23: 23-26 – The Memorials of Sts Louis IX, (1214-1270) King of France, St Thomas de Cantelupe of Hereford (c 1218–1282) and St Joseph Calasanz (1557-1648) Founder

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You pay tithes of mint and dill and cumin and have neglected the weightier things of the law – judgement and mercy and fidelity. [But] these you should have done, without neglecting the others…” … Matthew 23:23

REFLECTION – “Not only among the Jews but among ourselves as well, we find people sinning in these ways. They are swallowing camels. People of this type frequently show off their religion even in the smallest of things. They are rightly called hypocrites for wanting to exploit their religiosity before men but being unwilling to undertake that very faith, which God Himself has justified.
Therefore, the imitators of the scribes and Pharisees must be dislodged and sent away from us, lest a woe, touches us, in the same way it touches them.
The scribes could be described as those who valued nothing found in the Scriptures, except its plain sense interpreted legalistically.
Meanwhile, they condemn those who look into the very depths of God Himself.
Mint and dill and cumin are only spices for food but are not themselves, substantial food. What substantive food would mean in conversion, would be that which is necessary for the justification of our souls—faith and love—unlike these legalisms, which are more like condiments and flavourings. It is as if, a meal might be thought to consist, more of condiments and flavourings than the food itself.
The seriousness of judgement is neglected, while great attention is given to minor matters.
Spiritual exercises which in and of themselves are hardly justice, are spoken of as justice and compassion and faith.
It is lacking in justice to treat these small parts as the whole.
When we do not offer to God the observance of all that is necessary for worship, we fail altogether.” … Origen (c 185-253) – Priest, Theologian, Father – Commentary on Matthew, 19

PRAYER – Dear Lord, help me to teach others about You by my example as well as my words. Grant that I may spread Your truth and Your light wherever I go. St Louis and St Joseph of Calasanz, you are examples of the way to true faith and love, assist us by your prayers, in living the true way of life in this world to attain our true home in heaven. We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever, amen.

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST

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

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on IGNORANCE, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 15 July – “You have revealed them to the childlike.” … Matthew 11:25

One Minute Reflection – 15 July – Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, YearA, Readings: Isaiah 10:5-713-16Psalm 94:5-1014-15Matthew 11:25-27 and the Memorial of St Bonaventure OFM (1221-1274)

“You have revealed them to the childlike.” … Matthew 11:25

REFLECTION“I give praise to you,” Jesus says, “because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned.”   What?   Is He glad at the loss of those who don’t believe in Him?   Certainly not.   How wonderful are God’s designs for people’s salvation!   When they turn away from the truth and refuse to accept it, God never forces them but lets them be.   Their wandering away stimulates them to find the path again.   Returning to their senses, they hastily seek out the grace of the call to faith they had rejected before.   As for those who had remained faithful, their devotion becomes even stronger like this.   So Christ is glad these things are revealed to some but saddened they are hidden from others.   This is made known when He weeps over the city (Lk 19:41).   Saint Paul writes in the same spirit:  “Thanks be to God!   You were once slaves of sin but you have become obedient from the heart” to the Gospel (Rom 6:17). …

Who are the wise Jesus is talking about here?   The scribes and the Pharisees.   He says this to hearten His disciples, by showing them of what privileges they have been accounted worthy.   Simple fishermen that they are, they have received the illumination that the wise and learned despised.   These latter are wise in name only, they think themselves wise but are false scholars.   That is why Christ did not say: “You have revealed them to the ignorant” but to “the childlike,” that is to say, simple, honest people. …   In this way, He teaches us to utterly renounce important things and seek out simplicity.   Saint Paul goes even further:   “If anyone considers himself wise in this age, let him become a fool so as to become wise” (1Cor 3:18).” … St John Chrysostom (345-407) – Bishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church – Sermons on Saint Matthew’s Gospel, no.38, 1matthew 11 25 - you have revealed to the children-who are the wise - st john chrysostom 15 july 2020

PRAYER – Lord God, in Your wisdom You created us, by Your Providence, You rule us. Penetrate our inmost being with Your holy light so that our way of life may always be one of faithful service and childlike trust in You.   Grant that we may always follow behind Your Son and grasp His hand, to lead us to You.   May we grow in faith and love daily, by the intercession of Saint Bonaventure and may be a light of love, to all around us, as he was.   We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.st bonaventure seraphic doctor pray for us 15 july 2020

Posted in GOD is LOVE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on FREE WILL, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on GRATITUDE, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SANCTITY

Thought for the Day – 12 July – The Grace of God

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

The Grace of God

the grace of god bacci 12 july 2020

“God has endowed us with wonderful corporal and spiritual gifts, creating us after His own image with powers of intellect and of will.
More than this, He has raised us to the supernatural order by communicating to us, His grace, which enables us to live His own life and to share in His divine nature, as His adopted sons.

Grace is the greatest gift which God has given us.
It enlightens our minds and moves our will to obey His commands and to perform actions which merit an everlasting reward.
It is an entirely supernatural and gratuitous gift.
For this reason, we cannot merit it but, we should continually pray for it because, it is absolutely necessary if we are to do good and to merit Heaven.
Our first ancestor, Adam, was endowed with this gift by our Creator.
Unfortunately, by original sin, he lost it for himself and for his descendants.

We cannot complain to God about this loss, since grace is an entirely supernatural gift which is in no way, due to our human nature.
For the same reason, we cannot merit it on our own.
But God, being infinitely good, as well as, infinitely just, sent His only-begotten Son to redeem us from sin and to grant us His friendship once more.

We should be very grateful to God for this extraordinary favour and should unite our efforts to the divine action of grace, in the performance of good works, which will enable us to merit everlasting life.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on VIRTUE

Thought for the Day – 11 July – The Good Odour of Christ

Thought for the Day – 11 July – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Good Odour of Christ

you can see a reflection of heaven in the eyes of a saint - bacci the good odour of christ - 11 july 2020

“Everyone has an attractive side to his personality which can draw others towards good or towards evil, for a man’s behaviour, countenance and conversation, reflect his inner spirit.
Charm is very often a mysterious and undefinable quality.
Sometimes you may meet a man of the world who has forgotten that he has an immortal soul and lives purely for pleasure.
Even before he speaks to you, you can read on his lips and in his eyes, the kind of man he is.
If you fail to resist and to do your best to remain on a higher plane, you will be overwhelmed by the charm of his personality.

Your can also encounter charm, however, in a privileged soul, who is in constant contact with God.
You can find it in the monk who has left the world, in order to meditate on God and to pay for his own salvation and for the salvation of his brothers in Christ.
You can meet it in a Saint, one of those rare men, who lives in the world but thinks all the time of God.
When you encounter this supernatural charm, you experience a longing to be good and holy also.

You can see a reflection of Heaven in the eyes of a Saint.
When he speaks to you, words, which if uttered by somebody else, would have no force, stir you and urge you towards all that is good.
What exactly is this quality of attractiveness?
It is “the sweet odour of Christ,” the spiritual fragrance of virtue.
Anyone who met St Aloysius Gonsaga, felt a yearning to be pure.
Anyone who heard the unadorned sermons of the Cure d’Ars, wept for his sins and was set on fire with the love of God and the desire of everlasting happiness.
It was the same with all the Saints.
Do we influence others in this way?”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, GOD the FATHER, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PRIESTS, the PRIESTHOOD and CONSECRATED LIFE, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SILENCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on WORK/LABOUR, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 11 July – St Benedict

Quote/s of the Day – 11 July – The Memorial of St Benedict of Nursia OSB (c 480-547)

“It is time now for us to rise from sleep!”

it is time now for us to rise from sleep! st benedict 11 july 2020

“Listen and attend
with the ear of your heart.”

listen and attend with the ear of your heart st benedict 11 july 2020

“He should know,
that whoever undertakes,
the government of souls,
must prepare himself
to account for them.”

he should know that whoever undertakes the government - st benedict 11 july 2020

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

st-benedict-there-exists-an-evil-fervour-11-july-2017 and 11 juy 2020

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

for at all times we must so serve Him - st benedict 11 july 2020

“He, who labours as he prays,
lifts his heart to God,
with his hands.”

he who labours as he prays lifts his heart to god with his hands - st benedict 11 july 2020

“Run, while you have the light of life!”

More here:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/07/11/quote-s-of-the-day-11-july-st-benedict/

St Benedict (c 480-547)

run while you have the light of life! 11 july 2020 st benedict

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, I BELIEVE!, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SPEAKING of ....., The HOLY SPIRIT, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 6 July – ‘… The Measure of each One’s Faith…’

Quote/s of the Day – 6 July – Monday of the Fourteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: Hosea 2:14-16, 19-20 (16-18, 21-22), Psalm 145:2-9, Matthew 9:18-26

‘… The measure of each one’s faith…’

“If I only touch his garment, I will be made well.”
Jesus turned, and seeing her he said,
“Take heart, daughter, your faith has made you well.”
And instantly the woman was made well.”

Matthew 9:21-22

matthew 9 21-22 if I only touch his garment i will be made well - 6 july 2020

“I live, no longer I
but Christ lives in me,”

Galasians 2:20

galasians-2-20-i-live-no-longer-i-but-christ-lives-in-me-25-jan-2020 - ST PAUL - and 6 july 2020

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

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

A Commentary on Luke, Book 2

elizabeth says blessed are you because you have believed - you also are blessed - st ambrose 6 july 2020

“What determines that the gifts of God dwells in us,
is the measure of each one’s faith.
Because it is to the extent that we believe,
that the enthusiasm to act is given us.
And so those who act,
reveal the measure of their faith
proportionate to their action,
they receive their measure of grace
according to what they have believed. …”

St Maximus the Confessor (c 580-662)
Monk and Theologian

what determines that the gifts of god dwells in us - st maximus the confessor 6 july 2020

“Pray in the spirit and sentiment of love,
in which the royal prophet said to Him,
‘Thou, O Lord, are my portion.’
Let others choose to themselves,
portions among creatures,
for my part, You are my portion,
You alone I have chosen for my whole inheritance.”

St Augustine of Canterbury (Died c 605)

pray-in-the-spirit-and-sentiment-of-love-you-alone-i-have-chosen-st-augustine-of-canterbury-27-may-2020 and 6 july 2020 speaking of faith

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

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

he is present to the eyes of the mind - st theodore the studite 6 july 2020

“Faith is like a bright ray of sunlight.
It enables us to see God in all things,
as well as, all things in God.”

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

faith is like a bright ray of sunlight - st francis de sales 6 july 2020

“By faith we adhere to Christ
and the edifice of our spiritual life
becomes thereby firm and stable.
Christ makes us share
in the stability of the divine rock
against which even hell’s fury
cannot prevail (Mt 16:18).”

Blessed Columba Marmion (1858-1923) Abbot

Our faith, the victory over the world

by faith we adhere to christ - bl columba marmion 6 july 2020

“Life has only one face – LOVE.”

Blessed Benedetta Bianchi Porro (1936-1964)

life-has-only-one-face-love-bl-benedetta-porro-23-jan-2020 and 6 july 2020

Posted in EUCHARISTIC Adoration, HOLY COMMUNION, I BELIEVE!, JUNE-THE SACRED HEART, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SIN, SACRED HEART QUOTES, SUNDAY REFLECTIONS, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Thought for the Day – 21 June – Holy Communion

Thought for the Day – 21 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971) (Incorporating the Sunday Reflection)

Holy Communion

 “Let us meditate on what an extraordinary thing Holy Communion is.
Jesus, God made man, really descends into us, poor creature though we are.
We become the living temples of the Holy Trinity.

Not only does Jesus come to us, body, soul and divinity but, He also becomes our food.
There is a great difference, however, between the nourishment of material food and the spiritual nourishment which we receive from the body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ.
When we take ordinary natural food, we assimilate it.
In other words, we cause it to become blood of our blood and flesh of our flesh.
When we receive Holy Communion, on the other hand, it is we who must be assimilated and changed into Jesus.
Each of us should become, therefore, another Christ, in the manner indicated by St Paul:  “It is now, no longer I that live but Christ, lives in me” (Gal 2:20).

Material food becomes human and is assimilated into our being.
Our Eucharistic food assimilates us into Itself and, in a certain sense, deifies us.
This is why St John Chrysostom calls it a mystery which transports us into Heaven.

Before this can happen, however, it is necessary for us to approach Holy Communion with the necessary dispositions.
These are:
(1) A lively and active faith, which will enable us to recognise in the white Host, the person of Jesus Himself, full of goodness, mercy and love, eager to shower upon us, all the treasures of His Heart.
(2) Purity and freedom, not only from mortal sin but, also from any deliberate attachment to venial sin.
(3) Deep humility because, Jesus loves the humble and holds the proud at a distance from Him.   He wishes us to be like Him, in other words, meek and humble of heart.   There must be no worldly ambition, therefore, no love of honours, riches or human greatness, no inordinate affection for things or persons.   There must be only a great desire to please God alone and to offer Him our whole life, including every thought and action.
(4) Finally, an ardent love for Jesus, which will consume all our imperfections and unite us to Him so intimately, that, we shall be transformed by Him.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

how w should approach holy communion bacci 21 june 2020

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 16 June – Purity of Intention

Thought for the Day – 16 June – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Purity of Intention

purity of intention - bacci 17 june 2020

“Purity of intention consists in doing the will of God in all things from the motive of pure love.
We should not be egocentric but theocentric;   in other words, we should perform all our actions, not for our own satisfaction but to please God.
Since God is our final end, everything should be done for Him.
Why are we so often agitated and discontented?
It is because, we are looking for success and for the approval of men.
If we do not get these, we imagine that we have failed and have accomplished nothing.

Men judge the value of an enterprise by it’s external success and by the amount of work which went into it.
It is not so with God.
He judges the value of our actions from the sincerity of our desire to please Him ad to prove our love for Him.
This is enough for Him;  success is not necessary.
If we do everything for the love of God, we shall always be content as the Saints were, whether our projects succeed or fail.
We shall have achieved our purpose, if we have pleased God.

Purity of Intention in our actions, is fundamental in the Christian life.
“If thy eye be sound,” Jesus Himself tells us, “thy whole body will be full of life.   But, if thy eye be evil, thy whole body will be full of darkness” (Mt 6:22)
“Men see those things that appear but the Lord beholds the heart” (1 Kings 16:7).

A man who works solely for the love of God, will have great peace of soul in this life and an everlasting reward in the next.
But, if in our actions, we seek our own satisfaction or the praise of men, we shall have already received our reward on earth and cannot expect to receive it in Heaven.   “They have received their reward” (Mt 6:2).

Purity of intention, inspired by the love of God, transforms even our most trivial actions and makes them pleasing to God.
Without it, we lose all merit in the sight of God.

Do you remember the Gospel incident of the poor widow who offered her last two coins in the Temple?
Others were there, offering up large sums of money but she could not have given more.
“Amen, I say to you,” said Jesus, “this poor widow has put in more than all those who have been putting into the treasury” (Mk 12:41-44).”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on FASTING, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 17 June – ‘Purity of intention…’

One Minute Reflection – 17 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Wednesday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: 2 Kings 2:1, 6-14, Psalm 31:20, 21, 24, Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18

“Beware of practising your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven.” … Matthew 6:1

REFLECTION – “Our Lord, so the early Fathers say, used to tell His disciples to be well-proved bankers, proving all things, holding fast what is of value.   No coin finds acceptance commercially if the gold is below standard, underweight, of it the piece is illegally struck;  nor can our actions have any value spiritually, unless they are suitable, graced with charity and have a pious motive.

Take fasting, for instance – if I fast simply for the purpose of slimming, my fasting is for debased spiritual coinage;  if temperance underlies it but I am not in a state of grace, it is still deficient, for charity alone gives weight to what we do;  if I do it merely out of courtesy for the company in which I find myself, it lacks the stamp of right intention. Let my fasting be based on temperance, my soul in a state of grace, my intention solely to please God, then my efforts will ring true, fit to enlarge my store of charity.

Given utmost purity of intention and a firm resolve to please God, little actions are well done.   In these circumstances they lead to great holiness.   Some people, in spite of eating all they can, remain only skin and bone, weak, listless, their powers of digestion are poor.   Others may eat next to nothing yet be fit as fiddles, full of energy — nothing is wrong with their digestion!   Some folk there are, in the same way, who do many good things, yet have little extra charity to show for it – coldness and carelessness, or instinct and inclination rather than grace or zeal, is where the blame lies.   On the other hand, there are those who accomplish little but to perfect is their will, their intention, however, that their growth in charity is great.   They have only a little talent but they make such careful use of what they have that the Lord rewards them for it generously.” … St Francis de Sales (1567-1622) Bishop of Geneva, Doctor Caritatismatthew 6_1 - beware of practising - let my fasting be based on temperance my soul in a state of grace - st francis de sales 17 june 2020

PRAYER – Litany of Humility
By Servant of God Cardinal Merry del Val (1865-1930) – who was accustomed to recite this prayer daily after the celebration of Holy Mass.

O Jesus meek and humble of heart, Hear me.
From the desire of being esteemed, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the desire of being loved, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the desire of being extolled, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the desire of being honoured, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the desire of being praised, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the desire of being preferred to others, Deliver me Jesus.
From the desire of being consulted, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the desire of being approved, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the fear of being humiliated, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the fear of being despised, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the fear of suffering rebukes, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the fear of being calumniated, Deliver, me, Jesus.
From the fear of being forgotten, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the fear of being ridiculed, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the fear of being wronged, Deliver me, Jesus.
From the fear of being suspected, Deliver me, Jesus.

That others may be loved more than I,
Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.
That others may be esteemed more than I,
Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.
That in the opinion of the world, others may increase
and I may decrease,
Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.
That others may be chosen and I set aside,
Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.
That others may be praised and I unnoticed,
Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.
That others may be preferred to me in everything,
Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.
That others may become holier than I,
provided that I become as holy as I should,
Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.
Amenlitany of humility by card merry del val 17 june 2020

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PURITY, SACRAMENTS, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 8 June – There is nothing so beautiful as a soul that is pure. 

One Minute Reflection – 8 June – Month of the Sacred Heart” – Monday of the Tenth week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: 1 Kings 17:1-6, Psalm 121:1-8, Matthew 5:1-12 and the Memorial of Saint Medard (c 456-545) Bishop

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” … Matthew 5:8

REFLECTION – “There is nothing so beautiful as a soul that is pure.   If we understood this, we would be incapable of losing our purity.   A pure soul is like a beautiful pearl.   So long as it is concealed in a shell at the bottom of the sea, no-one thinks of admiring it.   But if you display it in the sun then this pearl shines and draws people’s eyes. Purity comes from heaven, we have to ask God for it.   If we ask for it we shall get it.   We must take great care not to lose it.   It closes our hearts to pride, sensuality and every other passion.

Children, we cannot understand the power that a pure soul has over the Good God – it gets all it wants.   Before God, a pure soul is like a child before it’s mother, it caresses her and hugs her and it’s mother returns it’s caresses and embraces.

To preserve our purity there are three things – the Presence of God, prayer and the sacraments.” … St John-Marie Baptiste Vianney (1786-1859) Curé d’Ars – Selected thoughts of the Curé d’Arsmatthew 5 8 - blessed are the pure in heart - purity comes from heaven - st john vianney 8 june 2020

PRAYER – Lord God and Father, grant us we pray, a heart like Your divine Son’s – His Sacred Heart is our standard and our goal – grant us a heart made of flesh, pure and beautiful in Your sight.   May we ever seek Your Face and follow the love with which the Sacred Heart of Jesus guides our way.   May the prayers of St Medan today, help us to be Your children, pure in heart.    Through Christ our Lord, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever, amen.st medard pray for us 8 june 2020 (1)

Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on PURITY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Thought for the Day – 21 May – Holy Purity

Thought for the Day – 21 May – “Mary’s Month” – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Holy Purity

“Have you ever experienced the sheer delight of climbing the mountains on a summer’s day and coming across one of those little alpine lakes, a tiny mirror, reflecting the still blueness of the sky?
Or have you ever watched an infant smiling in it’s angelic slumber and been held spellbound by this vision of innocence?
Finally, on some calm, clear night, surely you have studied the star-spangled sky and have been so overwhelmed by the beauty of the scene, that you could have cried out with the Psalmist:  “The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament proclaims His handiwork” (Ps 18:1).
These, are only faint images of the beauty and virginal purity of Mary.
Her soul was the purest and most beautiful of the entire human and angelic creation, because, nobody else was ever raised to the dignity of the Motherhood of God.
She was conceived free from all taint of original sin and enriched with every grace.
In her chaste womb, she conceived the Infant Jesus.
Later, she held Him close to her heart;  she lived for Him and eventually died for love of Him.

Purity is a virtue which is attractive to everybody, even to those who are evil themselves, or to those, who have lost their own chastity.
We love and desire this virtue but, are we prepared to make any sacrifice in order to preserve it, in the manner demanded by our particular state in life?
“The kingdom of heaven has been enduring violent assault,” Jesus said “and the violent have been seizing it by force” (Mt 11:12).
This is especially true in regard to the acquisition of the virtue of purity.
It is not enough to desire it, we must be willing to make sacrifices in order to acquire it.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

hr soul was the purest and most beautiful - the purity of mary bacci 21 may 2020 bacci the purity of mary

Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

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

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

Mary, the Source of Holiness

“God is the primary origin of all holiness.
But, the Blessed Virgin gave us Jesus, Who is our Redeemer and the author of grace.
For this reason, she may be called the source of grace, the divine aqueduct, as St Bernard puts it, through which, the supernatural life of grace is brought to us (In adv Domini, Serm 2, no 5).
She was, moreover, full of grace and outstanding in holiness – as the Mother of God, she can obtain anything for us from her divine Son, because “it is the will of God that we receive everything through the hands of Mary” (St Bernard, In Nativ BMV, Serm, no 7).
Thirdly, even by her example, she can be the source of sanctity for us.
If we study her amazing humility, we shall learn to be humble, for our sinfulness gives us such good reason to humble ourselves.
If we meditate on her spotless purity, we shall experience a great desire and love for this beautiful virtue and shall have recourse to her in every danger to save us from impurity.
Then, let us reflect on her ardent love for God and for men.
Her charity prompted her maternal heart to offer up, as a divine Victim, her Son nailed to the Cross.
If we reflect on the nature of her charity, we also shall feel urged to love God above all things and to pray, work and make sacrifices for the salvation of our fellowmen.
Let us have, always before our minds, the image of our heavenly Mother and we shall be inspired to seek perfection in all our actions.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

god is the primary origin of all holiness. bacci 20 may 2020 mary the source of holiness

Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, OPEN HOUSE...Conversations with..., QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on PATIENCE, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on VIRTUE, The IMMACULATE CONCEPTION

Thoughts of Mary – 6 May – The Purple Flower of Sacrifice

Thoughts of Mary – 6 May – “Mary’s Month”

The Immaculate Virgin – the Purple Flower of Sacrifice
Moments with Saint Pope John XXIII (1881-1963)

She who was preserved from original sin through the merits of her Son the Redeemer, was granted this privilege because she was predestined for the sublime mission of being the Mother of God.
She, who was to clothe in mortal flesh, the eternal Word of the Father, could not be contaminated, even for an instant, by the shadow of sin.
So, she is immaculate through the power of Christ, because all that was granted to the Mother, was granted through her Son.
The blooming of this snow white flower on our soil, is a sure pledge of the reconciliation of mankind with God.

How apt are the words of the liturgy that we sin on the Feast of the Nativity of the Virgin – “Thy nativity, O Virgin Mother of God, was the herald of joy to the whole world.”

But this joy is also a purple flower of sacrifice – the sacrifice of the Blessed Mother of Jesus who, when she gave her consent:  “Be it unto me …” accepted her share in the destines of her Son, from the poverty of Bethlehem, to the self-denials of the secluded life in Nazareth and the martyrdom of Calvary.

So we may not consider ourselves, the beloved children of Our Lord and of His Mother, if our life is without sacrifice and self-denial.

May this reference to the requirement of sacrifice, be then a loving and thoughtful reminder of the strong and solid Christian virtues of self-denial, patience and penitence.  Amen

the purple flower of sacrifice - st john XXIII 6 may 2020

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, To JESUS through MARY, Uncategorized

Thought for the Day – 30 January – How to Guard Holy Purity

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

How to Guard Holy Purity

st augustine warns us also in his confessions - on purity - bacci - 30 jan 2020

“Purity of heart is a quality which attracts everybody, even those who are evil themselves.   It makes a man seem like an angel in human form, for it shines from his countenance.
Unfortunately, the virtue of purity, is as difficult as it is beautiful.
It is fatal for anyone to cast himself into the mire.
The first sin of impurity is a disaster, because it is often the first link in a tragic chain, which makes him the salve of his lower impulses and of the tyrannical enemy of souls, the devil.

We must resist the earliest suggestions of the flesh, by every means in our power, both natural and supernatural.

St Thomas Aquinas tells us that none of the passions dethrones reason so much as sensuality (Summa Theologiae, II-II, q.53, a.6).
St Augustine warns us also in his Confessions, that lust has it’s cause in a perverse will and if anybody surrenders to it, he acquires the evil habit.
If this habit is not resisted, the sin becomes a frightening necessity.
Resist from the beginning, if you wish to avoid ruin and the slavery of the devil, who cunningly uses this passion, to capture souls.
If a man is overcome by violent temptation and falls into sin, however, he should not lose courage.
God is infinitely good and merciful.
He knows our weakness.
When anyone falls, let him rise immediately.
Let him return to God by repenting and making a good confession.
Let him resolve to make any sacrifice, rather than fall again!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci