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 DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 26 October – “They have bowed my soul down.” – Luke 13:10-17

One Minute Reflection – 26 October – Monday of the Thirtieth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Monday of the Thirtieth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Ephesians 4:32-5:8Psalms 1:1-234 and 6Luke 13:10-17

“But the leader of the synagogue, indignant that Jesus had cured on the sabbath, said to the crowd in reply, “There are six days when work should be done. Come on those days to be cured, not on the sabbath day.” – Luke 13:14

REFLECTION – “The whole human race, like this woman, was bent over and bowed down to the ground. Someone already understands these enemies. He cries out against them and says to God, “They have bowed my soul down.” The devil and his angels have bowed the souls of men and women down to the ground. He has bent them forward to be intent on temporary and earthly things and has stopped them from seeking the things that are above.

Since that is what the Lord says about the woman whom Satan had bound for eighteen years, it was now time for her to be released from her bondage on the sabbath day. Quite unjustly, they criticised Him for straightening her up. Who were these, except people bent over themselves? Since they quite failed to understand the very things God had commanded, they regarded them with earthbound hearts. They used to celebrate the sacrament of the sabbath in a literal, material manner and did not notice it’s spiritual meaning.” – St Augustine (354-430) Father, Doctor of Grace (Sermon 162)

PRAYER – Come to help us in our weakness, God of mercy, forgive the sins of Your people and as nothing we can do is worthy in Your sight, save us through the intercession of the Mother of our Lord, Jesus Christ. May the prayers of all your saints be offered to You on our behalf. We make our prayer through Jesus with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, OCTOBER - The HOLY ROSARY, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SIN, The LORD'S PRAYER

Thought for the Day – 22 October – “Forgive Us Our Debts”

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

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
“Forgive Us Our Debts”

“When we have asked God for nourishment for soul and body, we go on to implore forgiveness for our debts, whether they have been contracted in the course of nature, or of grace, or of sin.
We owe everything to God.
There was a time when we did not exist and, in His divine omnipotence He created us from nothing.
Our bodily powers and spiritual faculties are His gifts to us.
If we enjoy health, it is He Who has given it to us.
If we have any ability, it comes from Him.
Anything which we have been able to achieve as the result of mental or manual labour, has been made possible by His help.

Who is it but God Who rescues us from the many perils which surround us?
Who but He enables us to overcome so many difficulties?
How many times we should have died, if He had not sustained us!

Let us think back over our past lives.
How much reason we have to be grateful to God, Who has watched over us continually like a loving Father.
The conservation of life, is a continuous act of creation.
When we recite the Pater Noster, therefore, we should express our filial gratitude to God and ask for His continued protection.
Every moment of life is a new gift of God and an act of His infinite love in our regard.
Let us be grateful and love Him generously in return.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CHASTITY, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on ENVY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GOSSIP, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on HUMAN DIGNITY, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PATIENCE, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on VANITY, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 18 October – ‘… Let us always reflect the image of God …’ Matthew 22:15-21

One Minute Reflection – 18 October – Twenty Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Readings: Isaiah 45:14-6Psalms 96:134-5,7-89-101 Thessalonians 1:1-5Matthew 22:15-21 and the Feast of St Luke the Evangelist

And Jesus said to them, “Whose likeness and inscription is this?” They said, “Caesar’s.” Then he said to them, “Therefore, render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God, the things that are God’s.” – Matthew 22:20-21

REFLECTION In an ancient work known as the Incomplete Work on Matthew, an anonymous Ancient Christian Writer (ACW) offers the following insight on these verses from today’s Gospel:
“The image of God is not depicted on gold but is imaged in humanity. The coin of Caesar is gold; that of God, humanity. Caesar is seen in his currency; God, however, is known through human beings. And so give your wealth to Caesar but reserve for God the sole innocence of your conscience, where God is beheld. For the hand of Caesar has crafted an image by likenesses and lives each year by renewable decree. However, the divine hand of God has shown His image in ten points.

What ten points? From five carnal ones and five spiritual ones through which we see and understand what things are useful under God’s image. So let us always reflect the image of God in these ways:

I do not swell up with the arrogance of pride;
nor do I droop with the blush of anger;
nor do I succumb to the passion of avarice;
nor do I surrender myself to the ravishes of gluttony;
nor do I infect myself with the duplicity of hypocrisy;
nor do I contaminate myself with the filth of rioting;
nor do I grow flippant with the pretension of conceit;
nor do I grow enamoured of the burden of heavy drinking;
nor do I alienate by the dissension of mutual admiration;
nor do I infect others with the biting of detraction;
nor do I grow conceited with the vanity of gossip.

Rather, instead,

I will reflect the image of God in that I feed on love;
grow certain on faith and hope;
strengthen myself on the virtue of patience;
grow tranquil by humility;
grow beautiful by chastity;
am sober by abstention;
am made happy by tranquillity
and am ready for death, by practicing hospitality.

It is with such inscriptions that God imprints His coins with an impression made neither by hammer nor by chisel but has formed them, with His primary divine intention. For Caesar required his image on every coin but God has chosen man, whom He has created, to reflect His glory.” (Incomplete Work on Matthew, «Homily 40»)

PRAYER – Lord God, You chose St Luke to reveal the mystery of Your love in his preaching and his writings. Grant, we pray, that we may grow in love for the Holy Face of Christ, His words and His directions, revealed to us in the Gospels, in the example of your saints. Today, on his feast, we especially look to St Luke, to guide, teach and pray for us. We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, one God with You, forever and ever, amen.

Posted in MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN QUOTES, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, OCTOBER - The HOLY ROSARY, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SIN, The 4th Glorious Mystery - The ASSUMPTION, THE ASSUMPTION

Thought for the Day – 16 October – The Fourth Glorious Mystery – The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin into Heaven

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

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
The Fourth Glorious Mystery
The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin into Heaven

“The fourth Book of Kings tells us, that the prophet Elias was brought up into Heaven in a fiery chariot without having first endured the pains and humiliations of death (Cf 4 Kings 2:11).
Why did God not do likewise in the case of the Blessed Virgin, commanding His Angels to bear her to Heaven before death struck her innocent body?
As St Paul says, it was sin which caused death to enter the world.
From the moment of her conception, Mary was free from the slightest taint of sin, for she was immaculate and full of grace.
Nevertheless, according to the most widely held tradition, Mary chose to die, even as her divine Son had willed to die.
Jesus “was offered because it was his own will” (Isa 53:7).
The same is true in Mary’s case, with only this difference.
Jesus died a cruel death after the most hideous tortures in the midst of a blaspheming and hate-ridden mob.
Nothing like this happened to Mary, although she is called the Queen of Martyrs because of the sword which pierced her soul at the sight of her divine Son, dying in such agony.

Jesus willed, however, that the immaculate body of His Mother would remain intact.
It was only her great love and intense desire of being reunited with her Son, which gradually consumed her mortal life.
Her ever-incresing love for God, broke the bonds of her mortal frame until she went to sleep at last, in the Lord.

If only our death could be the same!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, SAINT of the DAY

Quotes of the Day – 15 October – St Teresa of Jesus of Avila

Quotes of the Day – 15 October – The Memorial of St Teresa of Jesus of Avila OCD (1515-1582) Doctor of the Church – “Doctor of Prayer”

“There is more value
in a little study of humility
and, in a single act of it,
than in all the knowledge
in the world.”

“You ought to make every effort
to free yourselves,
even from venial sin
and to do
what is most perfect.”

“There are more tears
shed over answered prayers,
than over unanswered prayers.”

“The surest way to determine.
whether one possesses the love of God,
is to see, whether he or she loves his or her neighbour.
These two loves are never separated.
Rest assured, the more you progress
in love of neighbour,
the more your love of God will increase.”

“Remember that you have only one soul;
that you have only one death to die;
that you have only one life. . . .
If you do this,
there will be many things
about which you care nothing.”

“There is no such thing
as bad weather.
All weather is good
because, it is God’s.”

More here:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/10/15/quotes-of-the-day-15-october-the-memorial-of-st-teresa-of-jesus-avila-1515-1582-doctor-of-the-church/
AND here:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/10/15/quotes-of-the-day-15-october-st-teresa-of-jesus-of-avila-speaking-of-prayer/

St Teresa of Jesus of Avila (1515-1582)
Doctor of Prayer

Posted in "Follow Me", ABOUT Antonio Bacci, MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, The 2nd Glorius Mystery - The ASCENSION, The ASCENSION of the LORD

Thought for the Day – 14 October – The Second Glorious Mystery – The Ascension of Jesus into Heaven

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

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
The Second Glorious Mystery
The Ascension of Jesus into Heaven

“Forty days after His glorious resurrection, Jesus came, with all His friends, among them His Mother, to the Mount of Olives.
This area had already witnessed the opening phase of His passion, which was all the more poignant, perhaps because in Gethsemane, it was not only His body which was lacerated by scourges and nails but, His soul, which experienced the agonising vision of the sins and ingratitude of the human race.
Now, however, He is here with a glorified body as the Conqueror of sin and of death.
He looks for the last time on His small band of followers, to whom He has entrusted His mission of transforming the entire universe by preaching and putting into practice, the Gospel message, throughout the world.
Now, He promises them the Holy Spirit, Who will give them the power to overcome evil.
Then He is lifted up toward Heaven, until a bright cloud hides Him from their sight.

Perhaps, the Blessed Mother, was the last to take her eyes off the disappearing cloud which had removed Jesus from view.
Her human eyes never saw again the beloved figure of her divine Son but, in her soul, she saw Him entering triumphantly into Heaven among choirs of Angels and sitting at the right hand of the Eternal Father.
She saw and thought with infinite yearnng of the not too distant day, when she would have passed from mortal exile, into the everlasting happiness of Heaven, where she would embrace her divine Son again in an ecstasy of love.

We have all been called to ascend to Heaven with Jesus and Mary.
Let us remember, however, that only the innocent and the repentant can be admitted into Paradise.
If we have been unfortunate enough to have lost our baptismal innocence, only the second way is left to us – the way of penance.
We must purify ourselves of our sins by means of good works.
We must ascend higher and highter, towards the summit of Christian perfection.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in AUGUST - The Immaculate Heart of Mary, CONFESSION/PENANCE, CONSECRATION Prayers, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN TITLES, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on REPARATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SIN, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The HOLY ROSARY/ROSARY CRUSADE

Quote/s of the Day – 13 October – Our Lady of Fatima

Quote/s of the Day – 13 October – The 103rd Anniversary of the Last Apparition of Our Lady of Fatima

Our Lady of Fátima –or Our Lady of the Rosary,
the name the three children called her –
is a title given to the Blessed Virgin Mary as She appeared in apparitions reported by three shepherd children at Fátima in Portugal.
These Apparitions occurred on the 13th day of six consecutive months in 1917, the first on 13 May and the last today, 13 October 2017.
The three children were Lúcia Santos
and her cousins Jacinta and Francisco Marto.
Her message was one of hope, repentance
and conversion for the whole world.

“I have come, to warn the faithful,
to amend their lives
and ask pardon for their sins.
They must not continue to offend Our Lord,
Who is already too much offended.”

“Look, my Daughter,”
Our Lady said to Lúcia on 10 December 1925,
“at my heart, surrounded with thorns,
with which ungrateful men pierce me.”

“Say the Rosary everyday
to obtain peace for the world.
And after each decade,
say the following prayer:
‘O my Jesus, forgive us our sins,
save us from the fires of Hell,
lead all souls to Heaven,
especially those in most need of Thy mercy.’”

“Pray, pray a great deal
and make sacrifices for sinners,
for many souls go to Hell
because they have no-one
to make sacrifices
and pray for them.”

“In the end,
my Immaculate Heart
will triumph.”

Our Lady assured Lúcia:
“My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge
and the way that will lead you to God.”

Thus, if we devote ourselves to her Immaculate Heart,
Mary will lead us to her Son, Jesus Christ
and we will be on the way to Heaven.

Official Prayer of Consecration
To Our Lady of Fatima

(Issued for the Jubilee in 2017)

Our lady of Fatima Hail,
Mother of the Lord,
Virgin Mary,
Queen of the Rosary of Fatima!
Blessed among all women,
you are the image of the Church dressed in the Paschal light,
you are the honour of our people,
you are the triumph over the mark of evil.
Prophecy of the merciful Love of the Father,
Teacher of the Annunciation of the Good News of the Son,
Sign of the burning Fire of the Holy Spirit,
teach us, in this vale of joys and sorrows,
the eternal truths that the Father reveals to the little ones.
Show us the strength of your mantle of protection.
In your Immaculate Heart,
be the refuge of sinners
and the way that leads to God.
In Faith, Hope and Love,
I surrender myself to you.
Through you, I consecrate myself to God,
O Virgin of the Rosary of Fatima.
And thus surrounded by the Light that comes from your hands,
I will give Glory to the Lord, forever and ever.
Amen

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The 5th Sorrowful Mystery - The CRUCIFIXION, The PASSION

Thought for the Day – 12 October – The Fifth Sorrowful Mystery – The Crucifixion

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

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
The Fifth Sorrowful Mystery
The Crucifixion

“At last, Jesus reaches Calvary, breathless and reduced to utter exhaustion.
The instrument of torture is taken from Him and laid upon the ground.
Our divine Redeemer suffers acute pain as Her is again stripped of His garments, which have stuck to His wounds.
Now, He is stretched, an innocent victim, on the altar of sacrifice, the Cross.
One of the executioners grasps His hand, pierces it with a large nail and attaches it to the wood.
Then, he does the same with the other hand and with the two feet.
His Mother is close at hand.
She feels in her heart the blows of the hammer which lacerate the living flesh of Jesus.
Jesus remains silent “as a meek lamb that is carried to be a victim” (Jer 11:19).

Now, the executioners raise up the Cross and fix it in the hold already prepared for it.
The shock of this impact sends a shudder of terrible pain through the Victim’s members and entire frame.
Behold Him now, suspended between Heaven and earth, the mediator between God and humanity, the victim of expiation for the innumerable sins of men.

Come near to the Cross and kiss the bloodstained feet.
While the Jews are insulting Him and most of the Apostles have abandoned Him, let us tell Him how we love Him.
Let us tell Him of our sorrow for our sins and of our determination to make amends for our faults and for our ingratitude by living in accordance with His teachings and example.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, FATHERS of the Church, MARTYRS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, ORIGINAL SIN, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on SCANDAL, QUOTES on SIN, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 9 October – ‘Neglecting grace’ – Luke 11:15-26

One Minute Reflection – 9 October – Friday of the Twenty Seventh Week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Galatians 3:7-14Psalms 111:1-23-45-6Luke 11: 15-26 and the Memorial of Saint Denis of Paris (Died c 258) and Companions, the First Bishop of Paris, Martyr

“When an unclean spirit goes out of someone, it roams through arid regions searching for rest but, finding none, it says, ‘I shall return to my home from which I came…” – Luke 11:24

REFLECTION – “The unclean spirit dwelt in us before we believed, before we came to Christ when our soul was still committing fornication against God and was with it’s lovers, the demons.
Afterward it said, “I will return to my first husband” and came to Christ, who “created” it from the beginning “in his image.”
Necessarily, the adulterous spirit gave up his place when it saw the legitimate husband.
Christ received us and our house has been “cleansed” from it’s former sins. It has been “furnished” with the furnishing of the sacraments of the faithful that they who have been initiated know.
This house does not deserve to have Christ as it’s resident immediately, unless it’s life and conduct are so holy, pure and incapable of being defiled, that it deserves to be the “temple of God.”
It should not still be a house but a temple in which God dwells.
If it neglects the grace that was received and entangles itself in secular affairs, immediately, that unclean spirit returns and claims the vacant house for itself.
“It brings with it seven other spirits more wicked,” so that it may not be able again to be expelled “and the last state of that kind of person is worse than the first.”

It would be more tolerable, that the soul would not have returned to it’s first husband once it became a prostitute, than having gone back after confession, to her husband, to have become an adulteress again.
There is no “fellowship,” as the apostle says, “between the temple of God and idols,” no “agreement between Christ and Belial.”Origen of Alexandria (c 185-253) (Homilies on Exodus, 8)

PRAYER – Lord God, You sent St Denis and his companions to proclaim Your glory to the nations and gave them the fortitude to die for Your sake. Help us, by their exmple, to meet with a like indifference, the triumphs and afflictions this world has to offer. We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, one God with You and the Holy Spirit, now and for all eternity, amen.

Posted in EUCHARISTIC Adoration, FRANCISCAN OFM, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on GREED, WEALTH, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on POVERTY, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Quote/s of the Day – 4 October – Beloved St Francis of Assisi

Quote/s of the Day – 4 October – The Memorial of St Francis of Assisi (c 1181–1226)

“Sanctify yourself
and you will
sanctify society.”

“Remember that when you leave this earth,
you can take with you,
nothing that you have received—
only what you have given –
a full heart,
enriched by honest service,
love, sacrifice and courage.”

“Let us give alms because these
cleanse our souls from the stains of sin.
Men lose all the material things
they leave behind them in this world
but they carry with them the reward of their charity
and the alms they give.
For these they will receive from the Lord
the reward and recompense they deserve.”

“Your God is of your flesh,
He lives in your nearest neighbour,
in every man.”

“O you sons of men,
how long will you be dull of heart?
… Behold – daily He humbles Himself
as when from heaven’s royal throne
He came down into the womb of the Virgin.
Daily, He Himself,
comes to us with like humility;
daily He descends
from the bosom of the Father,
upon the altar,
in the hands of the priest.”

“You have no enemy except yourselves.”

More here:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/10/04/quote-s-of-the-day-4-october-the-memorial-of-st-francis-of-assisi-1181-2-1226/

St Francis of Assisi (c 1181–1226)

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONSOLATION, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE

Thought for the Day – 29 September – Frequent Confession and Communion, Part One

Thought for the Day – 29 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Frequent Confession and Communion – Part One

“Among the efficacious means of self-sanctification, are frequent Confession and Holy Communion.
Confession purifies the soul of sin, into which, unfortunately, we continue to fall and confers sacramental grace, through which we are fortified against the assaults of the devil.
It also gives us an opportunity of being guided on the right road by our Confessor, who knows our secret failings and will give us, in God’s name, words of encouragement, comfort and spiritual direction.
We should frequently receive this Sacrament of God’s mercy – in fact, those who are striving after holiness, should go to Confession every week, or, at least every fortnight.
Even if we have not committed grave sin, when we examine ourselves before God, we shall find many faults and failings.
The Holy Spirit reminds us that, even the just man sins seven times a day, which means many times.
“The just man falls seven times” (Prov 24:16).
“If we say that we have no sin” writes St John, “we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us” (1 Jn 1:8).
Since then, we are all poor sinners and Jesus, in His infinite goodness has given us this means of purifying our souls, we should not neglect to use it to remain in the state of grace.
Frequent Confession, is not difficult.
On the contrary, if we have the proper disposition, it can be a great comfort and consolation to us.
There is not greater solace than to possess the grace of God and to be pure and free from all sin.
Furthermore, by remaining in venial sin, we are in danger of drifting gradually into more grievous sin and, into a state of tepidity, which is so dangerous, as well as so displeasing to God.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in ARCHangels and Angels, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, GOD the FATHER, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE

One Minute Reflection – 29 September – Michael and his angels battled against the dragon.

One Minute Reflection – 29 September – The Feast of Sts Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, Readings: Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14 or Apocalypse (Revelation) 12:7-12, Psalms 138:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, Gospel: John 1:47-51

“Then war broke out in heaven; Michael and his angels battled against the dragon. The dragon and it’s angels fought back …” … Apocalypse 12:7

REFLECTION – “We must not think that the devil and his angels dared to fight in heaven, since he could not even tempt Job without God’s permission. Rather by “heaven” he quite manifestly indicates the Church, where each one of the faithful constantly contends against spiritual evils. Therefore, the apostle says, “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against the principalities and powers and against the world rulers of this present darkness.

And so he says here, that Michael with his angels fights against the devil because by praying according to the will of God, for the Church in this world and, by granting her his aid, he is properly understood to be fighting for her. And so the apostle says, “Are not all ministering spirits sent forth to serve for the sake of those who are to obtain salvation?” Indeed, the name of Michael himself is interpreted to mean “the helper of God” and so, this work is properly assigned to him. Also Daniel said, that in the last distress, [Michael] would come for the succour of the church: “At that time shall arise Michael, the great prince who stands for the children of your people. And there shall be a time, such as has never been since the nations first began to be. And in that time your people shall be delivered, everyone who shall be found written in the book.” The angels are said to be his by a certain manner of speaking, such as we read, “For their angels always behold the face of my Father who is in heaven.”

And so it speaks of those who, by believing, began to be citizens in Christ and thus are His angels, because they are regarded as protected by one guardian king and as made glad by one life-giving spirit. The devil and his angels are not only those who are similar to him in nature and will. They are also as men, who after being caught in his traps, became pursuers of such things. Indeed, because of the qualities of his wil,l it is said about the devil, “An evil man has done this” and about Judas, “[One of you] is a devil.” The devil is said to express himself by way of a twofold body. When he is conquered, he is said to be thrown out by those who have renounced him and have received faith in Christ and so no longer copy his errors. Rather, in them “love [remains] from a pure heart and a good conscience and sincere faith.” Or, since the Church is already separated from any admixture of evil and is glorified by the future blessedness, no place is given to the devil and to his angels to seduce the evil, or to tempt the good. The psalm refers to him and says, “I passed by and lo! he was not and I sought him, but his place was not found.” … Primasius of Hadrumetum Bishop (Died c 560) – Commentary on the Apocalypse, 12

NOTE: Primasius (died c 560) was Bishop of Hadrumetum and primate of Byzacena, in Africa. One of the participants in the Three Chapters Controversy, his commentary on the Book of the Apocalypse (Revelation), is of interest to modern scholars for it’s use of the lost commentary of Ticonius on the same book of the New Testament.

PRAYER – Dear and Holy God, let us offer You all our daily struggles against sin and evil. Grant us the strength to resist all forms of idolatry, to seek only You and never to allow the material goods of this world to seduce us. Sustain us ever more with Your word and help us to find in it, the source of life. Grant that the angels who always minister to You in heaven may defend us during our life on earth and protect us from evil. Grant this, through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever. Amen

Posted in "Follow Me", ARMOUR of CHRIST, INCORRUPTIBLES, ON the SAINTS, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, QUOTES on WORRY/ANXIETY, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The WILL of GOD

Quote/s of the Day – 27 September – St Vincent de Paul

Quote/s of the Day – 27 September – The Memorial of St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)

“The most powerful weapon
to conquer the devil is humility.
For, as he does not know at all,
how to employ it,
neither does he know
how to defend himself from it.”

“Free your mind from all that troubles you;
God will take care of things.
You will be unable to make haste in this (choice) without,
so to speak,
grieving the heart of God
because He sees that you do not honour Him sufficiently
with holy trust.
Trust in Him, I beg you
and you will have the
fulfilment
of what your heart desires.”

“He who allows himself to be ruled or guided
by the lower and animal part of his nature,
deserves to be called a beast,
rather than a man.”

“Perfection consists in one thing alone,
which is doing the will of God.
For, according to Our Lord’s words,
it suffices for perfection to deny self,
to take up the cross and to follow Him.
Now who denies himself
and takes up his cross
and follows Christ better,
than he who seeks not to do his own will
but always that of God?
Behold, now, how little is needed
to become as Saint?
Nothing more than to acquire the habit of willing,
on every occasion,
what God wills.”

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

More here:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/09/27/quote-s-of-the-day-27-september-the-memorial-of-st-vincent-de-paul-c-m-1581-1660/
AND here:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/09/27/quote-s-of-the-day-27-september-st-vincent-de-paul/

St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)

Posted in INCORRUPTIBLES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 27 September – ‘… This is the time for each one of us to go out…’ Matthew 21:28

One Minute Reflection – 27 September – Twenty Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Readings: Ezekiel 18:25-28, Psalms 25:4-5, 6-7, 8-9, Philippians 2:1-11, Matthew 21:28-32 and the Memorial of St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)

‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’ … Matthew 21:28

REFLECTION – “My brethren, this is the time for each one of us to go out, for our part, from the place our sin. Let us go out from our Babylon to meet God our Saviour, as the prophet warns us: “Prepare to meet God our Saviour, O Israel, for he comes!” (cf Am 4:12). Let us leave the depth of our sin and consent to set out towards the Lord, who assumed “the likeness of our sinful flesh” (cf Rm 8:3). Let us leave sin’s will and set out to do penance for our sins. Then we shall find Christ – He Himself made expiation for the sin He had certainly not committed. Then He who saves the repentant will grant us salvation: “He shows mercy to those who are converted” (Sir 12:3).

But you are going to say to me (…): “Who is able to depart from sin by himself?” Indeed, it is true, the greatest sin is the love of sin, the desire to sin. Therefore, leave this desire (…), hate sin and see yourself departed from sin. If you hate sin, you have met Christ where He is to be found. To whoever hates sin, (…) Christ forgives their fault while waiting to root out our evil habits.

But you will say that even this is a great deal for you and that, without the grace of God, it is impossible to hate one’s sin and desire justice: “Let them thank the Lord for his mercy, such wondrous deeds for the children of Adam!” (Ps 106[107]:8). (…) O Lord, with a mighty hand, Jesus all-powerful, come to free my captive reason from the demon of ignorance and snatch my sick will, from the plague of it’s lusts. Free my capacities, so that I may act with strength as I desire to do with all my heart.Bl Isaac of Stella O.Cist (c 1100 – c 1170) Cistercian Monk, Abbot, Theologian, Philosopher – Sermon for Lent

PRAYER – Lord God, You hold out the Light of Your Word to those who do not know You. Strengthen in our hearts, the faith You have given us and the Credo we profess, so that no trials may quench the fire Your Spirit has kindled in us. May the intercession of St Vincent de Paul, grant us the grace of following the way of the Cross, to stand beneath it with our Mother, the Mother of God, Ave Maria! We make our prayer through Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on TIME, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The LAST THINGS

Thought for the Day – 25 September – Fundamental Facts

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

Fundamental Facts

“Life is passing.
The days chase one another; time is flying.
Childhood has become a distant memory.
Perhaps youth and manhood have also passed and gone and we find ourselves on the threshold of old age.
All those days, months and years that have passed were gifts of God.
He gave them to us for our benefit and sanctification.
But what use have we made of them?
Have we laid up treasure for eternal life?
And, if we have not done so up to now, for what are we waiting?
Let us remember the old saying, that we should never put off till tomorrow, what we ca do today.
Today there is still time to turn from sin, regain sanctifying grace and lead a life of Christian perfection.
But tomorrow?
What do we know about tomorrow?
Tomorrow is in the hands of the Lord and we do not know if the Lord will grant us further time to make amends!

Do not say, therefore, that you will change tomorrow, that tomorrow you will turn away from the path of sin and begin to lead a holy life.
For not alone does time pass but, it often betrays us!
Our Lord tells us that the judgement will come at a time when we least expect it.
The time that is gone will never return; the future is uncertain; there remains, only the present.
But the present is equally uncertain; it is something that passes and, every moment could be the last of our lives.
How many whom we have known, were taken away suddenly in the flower of their youth …
Is that not a warning to us?

Let us do good while we have time; let us gain merit now, for eternal life. Amen”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, GOD is LOVE, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MARIAN QUOTES, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 17 September – St Robert Bellarmine

Quote/s of the Day – 17 September – The Memorial of St Robert Bellarmine SJ (1542-1621) Doctor of the Church

“The school of Christ
is the school of love.
In the last day,
when the general examination takes place …
Love will be the whole syllabus.”

“What is easier, sweeter, more pleasant,
than to love goodness, beauty and love,
the fullness of which, YOU ARE,
O Lord, my God?”

“If you are wise,
then, know that you have been created
for the glory of God
and your own eternal salvation.
This is your goal;
this is the centre of your life;
this is the treasure of your heart.
May you consider truly good,
whatever leads you to your goal
and truly evil,
whatever makes you fall away from it.”

“It is granted to few,
to recognise the true Church,
amidst the darkness,
of so many schisms and heresies
and, to fewer still,
so to love the Truth
which they have seen,
as to fly to it’s embrace!”

“Charity is that, with which no man is lost
and without which, no man is saved.”

“It seems unbelievable
that a man should perish
in whose favour Christ said to His Mother:
‘Behold thy son’,
provided that he has not turned a deaf ear
to the words, which Christ addressed to him:
‘Behold thy Mother.’”

St Robert Bellarmine (1542-1621)
Doctor of the Church

More here:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/09/17/quote-s-of-the-day-17-september-the-memorial-of-st-robert-bellarmine-sj-1542-1621-and-st-hildegard-von-bingen-osb-1098-1179-both-doctors-of-the-church/

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, DIVINE MERCY, DOCTORS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DOUBT, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 17 September – “Your sins are forgiven.” ~ Luke 7:48

One Minute Reflection – 17 September – Thursday of the Twenty Fourth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 15:1-11Psalms 118:1-216-1728Luke 7:36-50 and the Memorial of St Robert Bellarmine (1542-1621) Doctor of the Church

“Your sins are forgiven. Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” ~ Luke 7:48,50

REFLECTION – “A sinful woman has proclaimed to us that God’s love has gone forth in search of sinners. For when He called her, Christ was inviting our whole race to His love and, in her person, He was drawing all sinners to His forgiveness. He spoke to her alone but He was drawing all creation to His grace. (…)

Who would not be struck by the mercy of Christ, who accepted an invitation to a Pharisee’s house in order to save a sinner! For the sake of the woman who hungered for forgiveness, He, Himself felt hunger for the table of Simon the Pharisee and all the while, under the guise of a meal of bread, He had prepared for the sinner a meal of repentance! (…)

In order that you may have the same experience, reflect within yourself that your sin is great but that it is blasphemy against God and an injury to yourself, to despair of His forgiveness, because your sin seems to you to be too great. He has promised to forgive your sins, however many they are; will you tell Him you cannot believe this and dispute with Him, saying that your sin is too great and He cannot heal your sickness? Stop at that point and cry out with the prophet: “Lord, I have sinned against you” (Ps 51[50]:6). At once He will reply, “As for me, I have overlooked your fault, you shall not die.” Glory to Him from us all, through all ages! Amen, Amen.” ~ An anonymous Syrian writer of the 6th century From a collection of homilies on the sinful woman, 1, 4.5.19.26.28 (Eastern Syrian)

PRAYER – Heavenly Father, teach me to do everything for Your honour and glory. Grant me the grace to work out my salvation with anxious concern each day of my life. St Robert Bellarmine, as you worked tirelessly for the salvation of souls, so now pray for us all, as tirelessly, that we may achieve eternal joy, amen.

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MISSION, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on WISDOM, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE

Thought for the Day – 15 September – Christ’s Work in Us

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

Christ’s Work in Us

“It is not enough that Jesus live in us ; He must increase and act in us continually.
The Spiritual life is like natural life.
It cannot stop, for to halt would mean death!
If Jesus is our life, He should live in us with ever-increasing intensity.
Life is like a stairway, we are either going up or coming down.

If we continue to climb energetically towards Jesus, we shall be coming nearer to Christian perfection.
If, on the other hand, we halt, the supernatural life of Jesus in us, will begin to weaken.
Tepedity will replace fervour and sin will succeed tepidity.
It is difficult to remain unchanged because, life involves movement.
‘Jesus Christ,” writes St Augustine, “was born a baby but, He did not remain one. He grew to boyhood, to adolescence and then, to maturity.”

It is necessary for us to grow also.
More precisely, it is necessary that Jesus grow continuously in us through faith, charity and good works.
“Court the good,” admonishes St Paul, “from a good motive always … until Christ is formed in you” (Gal 4:18-19).

It is not enough that Christ be born in us, it is necessary that He increase to the fullness of perfection (Cf Eph 4:13-16).
“Jesus increases daily,” writes Origen, “in the soul of the holy and just man, which mirror His grace, His wisdom and His sanctity. In the soul of the unfortunate sinner, however, Christ decreases and dies.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DIVINE MERCY, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD is LOVE, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on WEALTH/RICHES, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 16 September – ‘What are you afraid of, you men of little faith?’

One Minute Reflection – 16 September – Wednesday of the Twenty Fourth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 12:31–13:13, Psalms 33:2-3, 4-5, 12 and 22, Luke 7:31-35 and the Memorial of Sts Cornelius & Cyprian

“To what shall I compare the people of this generation?” … Luke 7:31

REFLECTION – “The apostle Paul says that there are some, who have no knowledge of God (1 Co 15:34). My opinion is that all those who lack knowledge of God, are those, who refuse to turn to Him. I am certain, that they refuse because they imagine this kindly disposed God, to be harsh and severe, this merciful God to be callous and inflexible, this lovable God to be cruel and oppressive. So it is, that wickedness plays false to itself, setting up for itself an image that does not represent God as He truly is.

What are you afraid of, you men of little faith? That He will not pardon your sins? But with His own hands He has nailed them to the cross. That you are used to soft living and your tastes are fastidious? But He knows the clay of which we are made (Gn 2:7). That a prolonged habit of sinning binds you like a chain? But the Lord loosens the shackles of prisoners. Or perhaps that angered by the enormity and frequency of your sins, He is slow to extend a helping hand? But where sin abounded, grace became superabundant (Rom 5,20). Are you worried about clothing and food and other bodily necessities so that you hesitate to give up your possessions? But He knows that you need all these things (Mt 6,32). What more can you wish? What else is there to hold you back from the way of salvation? This is what I say – you do not know God, yet you will not believe our words. I should like you to believe those whom experience has taught.” … St Bernard (1091-1153) Mellifluous Doctor of the Church – Commentary on the Song of Songs, Sermon 38

PRAYER – Look upon us Lord, Creator and Ruler of the whole world, give us the grace to serve You with all our hearts, to take up our cross and follow You, that we may come to know the power of Your love and the forgiveness which You give and You teach. Grant that by the intercession of Sts Cornelius and Cyprian, we may attain the glory of Your kingdom and see You face to face. We make our prayer through Christ our Lord with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, CONFESSION, DIVINE MERCY, DOCTORS of the Church, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, INCORRUPTIBLES, MARIAN Antiphons, MARIAN POETRY, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN TITLES, MATER DOLOROSA - Mother of SORROWS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, SEPTEMBER-The SEVEN SORROWS of MARY, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The PASSION

Quote/s of the Day – 15 September – Our Lady of Sorrows and of St Catherine of Genoa

Quote/s of the Day – 15 September – The Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows and of St Catherine of Genoa (1447-1510)

‘By the cross of our salvation
Mary stood in desolation
While the Saviour hung above
All her human powers failing,
Sorrow’s sword, at last prevailing,
Stabs and breaks her heart of love…
Virgin Mary, full of sorrow,
From your love I ask to borrow
Love enough to share your pain.
Make my heart to burn with fire,
Make Christ’s love my own desire,
Who for love of me was slain.’

Stabat Mater

“The spear which opened His side
passed through the soul of the Virgin,
which could not be torn
from the heart of Jesus.”

St Bernard (1090-1153)
Mellifluous Doctor of the Church

“Whoever you are, who love the Mother of God,
take note and reflect
with all your innermost feelings,
upon her, who wept for the Only-Begotten as He died…
The grief she felt in the Passion of her son,
goes beyond all understanding.”

St Amadeus of Lausanne (1108-1159)

“Near the cross stood His mother, speechless;
living she died;
dying she lived.

St Alphonsus (1696-1787)
Most Zealous Doctor

More Sorrowful Mother here:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/09/15/quote-s-of-the-day-15-september-the-memorial-of-our-lady-of-sorrows/

+++++++++++++

“Any time spent before the Eucharistic presence,
be it long or short,
is the best-spent time of our lives.”

“We must not wish anything other
than what happens from moment to moment,
all the while, however, exercising ourselves in goodness.”

“And when I hear it said,
that God is good and He will pardon us
and then see, that men cease not from evil-doing,
oh, how it grieves me!
The infinite goodness
with which God communicates with us,
sinners as we are,
should constantly make us love and serve Him better
but we, on the contrary,
instead of seeing in His goodness
an obligation to please Him,
convert it into an excuse for sin,
which will, of a certainty,
lead in the end,
to our deeper condemnation.”

“The one sole thing, in myself,
in which I glory,
is that I see in myself,
nothing, in which I can glory.”

“Oh, what peril attaches to sin, wilfully committed!
For it is so difficult for man to bring himself to penance
and without penitence,
guilt remains and will ever remain,
so long as man retains unchanged,
the will to sin,
or is intent upon committing it.”

“I see clearly with the interior eye,
that the sweet God loves, with a pure love,
the creature that He has created
and has a HATRED for nothing but SIN,
which is more opposed to Him,
than can be thought or imagined.”

St Catherine of Genoa (1447-1510)

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 GOD is LOVE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SIN, The INCARNATION

Thought for the Day – 11 September – The Incarnation

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

The Incarnation

“By means of the Incarnation, God comes to man so that man may return to God.
God created man by an act of love to display and to diffuse, His infinite goodness.
But this relationship of love was disrupted by sin.
Love became fear, on the part of man and it became justice, on the part of God.

The love of God is infinite, however and cannot decrease.
No sooner had man fallen, than God promised our first parents, that He Himself, would come to save them.
As soon as man had lost the white robe of grace, the Lord mercifully promised that He would come to restore it.
But how?
He could have sent an angel to lead erring man back to the fold and to teach him the way of virtue, which leads to Heaven.
That would have been a great act of love and mercy.
But, an angel is a finite being, whereas, the love of God has no limit.
For this reason, He was not satisfied to send an angel.

We can see, furthermore, another explanation of the great mystery of the Incarnation.
God infinitely loved man, who was the work of His omnipotence.
Precisely because He loved him, He wished to be loved by him in return.
But because the spirit of man is united to matter, he does not see God, except through the works of His creation.
He sees Him, as it were, “through a mirror in an obscure manner,” (1 Cor 13:12) and not face-to-face.
He does not love God, therefore, as he would if he could see Him in all His beauty.
He would need to see Him and to know Him better, before he could love Him more.
So God made Himself small by becoming man.
“Human wisdom often asks,” writes Bossuet, “why God came on earth.”
To this I reply: “He came to be lobed by men.”
“God was great,” writs St Bernard, “so great as to demand to be adored. Now He has become small, so that He may be better loved.”
God became, like us, a child.
“The goodness and kindness of God, our Saviour appeared,” (Titus 2:4) says St Paul.
But Jesus was not satisfied merely to become like us, to enlighten us with His doctrine and to enrich us with the abundance of His graces and gifts.
He also gave Himself to us by dying on the Cross and remaining with us in the Blessed Sacrament.
How could we fail to return such love!?”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on GOSSIP, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on JUDGING, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SCANDAL, QUOTES on SIN, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 10 September – “And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them..” … Luke 6:31

One Minute Reflection – 10 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary ” – Thursday of the Twenty Third week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 8:1b-711-13Psalms 139:1-313-1423-24Luke 6:27-38

“And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them..” … Luke 6:31

REFLECTION – “Whoever loves me, says the Lord, will keep my commandments” and, “this is my commandment: that you love one another” (cf. Jn 14:15.23; 15:12). Thus whoever does not love their neighbour fails to keep the commandment and so cannot love the Lord. (…)

If “love is the fulfilling of the law” (Rm 13:10), anyone who is full of rancour towards a neighbour, laying traps for the neighbour, cursing and exults in their fall, must surely be a transgressor deserving eternal punishment. If “he who speaks evil of his brother and judges him, speaks evil of the law and judges the law” (Jas 4:11) and the law of Christ is love, surely someone who speaks evil of Christ’s love, falls away from it and is the cause of his own perdition.

Do not listen gleefully to gossip at your neighbour’s expense, nor chatter to a person who likes finding fault. Otherwise you will fall away from divine love and find yourself cut off from eternal life. (…) Silence the person who utters slander in your hearing. Otherwise you sin twice over: – first you accustom yourself to a deadly passion and, second, you fail to prevent this gossip against your neighbour. (…)

St Paul says that if we have all the gifts of the Spirit but do not have love, we are no further forward (cf. 1 Cor 13:2). How assiduous, then, we ought to be in our efforts to acquire this love!” … St Maximus the Confessor (c 580–662) Abbot Theologian – First Century on Love, nos. 16, 56-58, 60, 54

PRAYER – Almighty Lord and God, protect us by Your power and love throughout this day, even as You have enabled us, in Your love to begin it. Do not let us turn aside to any sin but let our every thought, word and deed be done in love for You and Your creatures, our neighbour. Teach us to love as You have loved us and may our Sorrowful and Holy Mother, show us the way. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Who loved us to the end, with the Holy Spiriti, God now and for all eternity, amen.

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Thought for the Day – 9 September – The Two Standards

Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Two Standards

“The well-known meditation of St Ignatius in his Spiritual Exercies on the two standards, remains applicable to our times.
We need only glance at the world to see, that it contains two different kinds of people – the good and the bad, the enemies of Christ and His faithful followers.
But, there is also a third group, those who are indifferent and apathetic, those who think of their own comfort and convenience and of nothing else!
When one considers it, it is plain that those people who think only of themselves – and their number seems to grow every year – belong to the rearguard of those, who fight beneath the banner of Satan.
That man is an enemy of Christ, who has no generosity, no spirit of sacrifice, no desire to combat the evil which threatens to submerge the world.
“He who is not with me, is against me,” (Mt 12:30) said Jesus.
He who thinks only of his own convenience and remains indifferent to the spread of evil, is not worthy of Jesus.
One cannot be indifferent when faced with the alternative between good and evil because, indifference is tantamount to a betrayal.
“The Christian,” writes Tertullian, “is another Christ.”

The fact that we are Christians imposes on us, the obligation to fight openly and courageously under the standard of Christ.
The battle must be waged on two fronts.
On one side, the struggle is internal.
We must resist our rebellious inclinations and self-centred egoism.
At the same time, we must make a constant effort to advance in Christian perfection.
On the second front, the struggle is external.
It is not sufficient to sanctify ourselves but, we must try to sanctify others.
When we consider the sacrifices made in the cause of evil by the enemies of Christ, how can we remain indifferent?
We should work with zeal and with the help of God’s grace, to achieve our own sanctification and the reign of Christ in the universe.
We should examine what we have already done and resolve to be more determined in our future efforts!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in HOLY ORDERS, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on SIN, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS

Thought for the Day – 8 September – The Heart of Judas

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

The Heart of Judas

“The human heart is a mystery, the depths of which, it is difficult to sound.
We do not even understand ourselves.
The heart of man can soar to the loftiest heights of goodness or descend to unimaginable depths of evil.
Examples of the sublime heights to which men can rise, are provided by the lives of the Saints, who loved God so much, that they were on fire with charity and wished to abide forever in Him, “It is now no longer I that live,” said st Paul “but Christ lives in me” (1 Gal 2:20).

The heart of Judas, is a particularly deep mystery.
We read in the Gospel that Jesus called together His disciples in the upper room to celebrate His last Pasch with them.
Among them was Judas.
Jesus loved men so much, that He wished to remain with them, really and truly for all time, even after His approaching death.
“Having loved his own, who were in the world, he loved them to the end” (Jn 13:1).
When the meal was over, Jesus took bread and, lifting up His eyes to Heaven, He said: “Take and eat; this is my body.” Then He took the chalice, blessed it and turning towards the Apostles said these words: “All of you drink of this; for this is my blood of the new covenant, which is being shed for many.”
Then He added: “Do this in remembrance of me.”
In this way, Jesus instituted the Blessed Eucharist, which St Thomas Aquinas describes as Christ’s greatest miracle (Opsculum 57, Officium de festa Corporis Christi).
Furthermore, He raised His disciples, including Judas, to the sublime dignity of the Priesthood and bestowed on them, the power to do what He had just done.
One might say, that the infinite generosity of Jesus Christ, was exhausted at that moment.
He could not give anything more because, at that moment, He had given us Himself!

It was in this solemn moment, in which He received Jesus into his soul and was at the same time raised to the dignity of the Priesthood, that Judas finally decided to carry out his plan to sell his Master for thirty pieces of silver and to hand Him over to those who wished to kill Him.
How sin can degrade a human being!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in FRUITS of the SPIRIT, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on REPARATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN

Thought for the Day – 7 September – The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree

Thought for the Day – 7 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree

“Today’s subject for meditation is the parable of the barren fig tree in the Gospel of St Luke.
“A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard and he came seeking fruit thereon and found none. And he said to the vine-dresser, ‘Behold, for tree years now, I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and I find none. Cut it down, therefore; why does it still encumber the ground?’ But he answered him and said, ‘Sir, let it alone this year too, till I dig around it and manure it. Perhaps it may bear fruit but, if not, then afterwards thous shalt cut it down'” (Lk 13:6-9).

Perhaps Jesus has come many times to us also, looking for the fruit of our good works and has found none.
Perhaps, He has continued to bestow favours and blessings upon us and, perhaps, He has waited many years for us to correspond with His grace by performing acts of penance and of expiation.

We may have made good resolutions many times but, what became of them?
Temptations of various kinds may have caused us to neglect these resolutions, which remained like branches without any fruit.
We must remember, that although God is infinitely good and merciful, He is also, infinitely just.
The day could come when He might say: “Cut it down. Why does it still encumber the ground?”
In that case, what would become of us?

An episode described in the Gospel of St Mark, should induce serious reflection.
Jesus was walking from Bethany to Jerusalem and grew hungry on the way.
He saw a fig tree beside the road but, on inspection, found that it was barren.
“And He said to it: ‘May no fruit ever come from thee henceforth forever!’
“And immediately, the fig tree withered up.”

His disciples, we are told, were amazed when they saw this happening (Cf Mt 21:18-20).

How terrible, if God should ever pronounce this severe condemnation upon us!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DIVINE MERCY, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 7 September – “Stretch forth your hand.” – Luke 6:6-11

Quote/s of the Day – 7 September – Monday of the Twenty Third week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 5:1-8, Psalms 5:5-6, 7, 12, Luke 6:6-11

“Stretch forth your hand.”

Luke 6:10

“While the withered hand was restored,
the withered minds of the onlookers were not.
… Are you debating what you will do?
Worship Him as God.
Worship the Wonder-worker.
Worship One who worked good things
on behalf of another.”

St Athansius (297-373)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“What He receives on earth
He returns in heaven.
… A poor man is begging from you
and you are begging from God,
he asks for a scrap,
you ask for eternal life.”

St Caesarius of Arles (470-543)

“O God, grant that whatever good things I have,
I may share generously with those who have not
and whatever good things I do not have,
I may request humbly from those who do.”

St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)
Doctor anglicus

“If we look forward to receiving God’s mercy,
we can never fail to do good,
so long as we have the strength.
For if we share with the poor,
out of love for God,
whatever He has given to us,
we shall receive according to His promise,
a hundredfold in eternal happiness.
What a fine profit, what a blessed reward!
With outstretched arms He begs us
to turn toward Him, to weep for our sins
and to become the servants of love,
first for ourselves, then for our neighbours.
Just as water extinguishes a fire,
so love wipes away sin.”

St John of God (1495-1550)

“So when you leave prayer
to serve some poor person,
remember, that this very service,
is performed for God.

St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)

“Yours must be a work of love, of kindness,
you must give your time, your talents, yourselves.”

Blessed Frédéric Ozanam (1813–1853)
“Servant to the Poor”
and Founder of the St Vincent de Paul Society

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on GREED, WEALTH, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 7 September – “Stretch forth your hand.” – St Ambrose

One Minute Reflection – 7 September – “Month of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary” – Monday of the Twenty Third week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 5:1-8Psalms 5:5-6712Luke 6:6-11

“On another Sabbath, he entered the synagogue and was teaching and there was a man whose right hand was withered.” … Luke 6:6

REFLECTION“Are you angry at me because I have healed the whole man on the sabbath day?” In this place he revivified, with the salutary strength of good works, the hand which Adam stretched out to pluck the fruit of the forbidden tree. The hand which had withered through a crime, was healed by good deeds. Christ thereby rebuked the Jews who violated the precepts of the law with evil interpretations. They thought that they should rest even from good works on the sabbath, since the law prefigured in the present, the form of the future, in which indeed the days of rest from evils, not from blessings, would come.

Then you heard the words of the Lord, saying, “Stretch forth your hand.” That is the common and universal remedy. You, who think that you have a healthy hand, beware lest it is withered by greed or by sacrilege Hold it out often. Hold it out to the poor person who begs you. Hold it out to help your neighbour, to give protection to a widow, to snatch from harm one whom you see subjected to unjust insult. Hold it out to God for your sins. The hand is stretched forth, then it is healed. Jeroboam’s hand withered when he sacrificed to idols, then it stretched out when he entreated God” … St Ambrose (340-397)- One of the 4 original Doctors of the Latin Church – Exposition on the Gospel of Luke, 5

PRAYER – God of mercy and love, You offer all peoples the dignity of sharing in your life. Rule over our hearts and bodies this day. Sanctify us and guide our every thought, word and deed, my our hands be held out to our neighbour in imitation of Your love and mercy. By the intercession of Mary the Mother of Our Lord Jesus Christ and our Mother, strengthen us to love each other as brothers and sisters. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever 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.