Posted in ARMOUR of CHRIST, CATHOLIC Quotes, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, LENT 2023, LENTEN THOUGHTS, PATRONAGE - of PILGRIMS, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GOOD WORKS, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on MYSTERIES of our FAITH, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on TRUTH, QUOTES on VIRTUE, QUOTES on WATCHING, The FOUR CARDINAL VIRTUES

Our Lenten Journey with St Francis de Sales – 4 March –

Our Lenten Journey with St Francis de Sales – 4 March – The Memorial of St Casimir (1458-1484) Confessor, Prince – Saturday of Ember Week in Lent – Ecclesiasticus Sirach 31:8-11,Luke 12:35-40 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

The just shall flourish like the palm tree,
he shall grow up, like the cedar of Lebanon
.

Psalm 91:13

Stay dressed for action
and keep your lamps burning …

Luke 12:35-36

VIGILANT FAITH AND CHARITY
St Francis de Sales (1567-1622)
Doctor Caritas

IT WORKS THE SAME WAY with faith as with charity.
We know by the works which charity performs, whether faith is dead or dying. When it produces no good works, we conclude that it is dead and when they are few and sluggish, that, it is dying.
But just as there is a dead faith, there must also be a living one which is its opposite.
It is excellent. Joined and United with charity and vivified by it, it is strong, firm and Constant. It performs many great and good works which deserve the praise: “Oh, how great is your faith! Let all that you desire be done.” …

It is great because of the good works it performs and also because of the many virtues which accompany it and which it governs. … So charity united to faith is not only followed by all the virtues but, as a queen, she commands them and all obey and fight for her and, according to her will. From this, results the multitude of good works, of a living faith.

There is a vigilant faith which, again, depends on its union with charity.
But there is also one which is sluggish, dull and apathetic and, it is the opposite of vigilant faith. It is lax in applying itself to the consideration of the Mysteries of our Religion.
It is completely torpid and, for this reason, it does not penetrate revealed Truths at all. It sees them, to be sure and knows them, because its eyes are not altogether closed.
It is not asleep but it is drowsy or dozing. It resembles weary people who, although their eyes are open, see almost nothing and although they hear talking, they neither know nor understand what is said. Why? Because they are quite overcome with sleepiness. …

But vigilant faith not only performs good works, like living faith, it also penetrates and understands revealed Truths quickly and with great depth and subtlety of perception.
It is active and diligent, in seeking and embracing those things which can increase and strengthen it.
It watches and perceives from afar, all its enemies.
It is always on the alert to discover the good and to avoid evil.
It guards itself against anything which could ruin it.
Vigilant, it walks firmly and easily keeps from falling over precipices.

This vigilant faith is accompanied by the Four Cardinal Virtues: Fortitude, Prudence, Justice and Temperance.
It uses them as an Armoured Breastplate to put its enemies to flight, or to remain among them firm, invincible and unshaken.
So great is its strength that it fears nothing because, not only is it strong but also, it is aware of its strength and by Whom it is supported—Truth itself!
” (Sermon for Thursday after the First Sunday of Lent, 17 February 1622).

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Our Lenten Journey with St Francis de Sales – 27 February – THESE FORTY DAYS …

Our Lenten Journey with St Francis de Sales – 27 February – Monday of the First Week in Lent – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

My son, when you come to serve God,
prepare your sould for temptation
.”
Ecclus. Sirach 2:1

Then the devil left Him
and behold, Angels came
and ministered to Him
.”
Matthew 4:11

THESE FORTY DAYS …
St Francis de Sales (1567-1622)
Doctor Caritas

I DOUBT NOT that many prefer the end of today’s Gospel (Mt 4:1-11) to its beginning.
It is said there that after Our Lord had overcome His enemy and rejected his temptations, Angels came and brought Him heavenly food.
What joy to find oneself with the Saviour at this delicious feast!
My dear friends, we shall never be capable of keeping company with Him in His consolations, nor be invited to His Heavenly banquet, if we are not sharers of His labours and sufferings (2 Cor 1:7).
He fasted for forty days but the Angels brought Him something to eat only at the end of that time.

These forty days, … symbolise the life of the Christian – of each one of us!
Let us then desire these consolations only at the end of our lives and let us busy ourselves in steadfast resistance to the frontal attacks of our enemies.
For whether we desire it or not, we shall be tempted.
If we do not struggle, we shall not be victorious, nor shall we merit the crown of immortal glory which God has prepared for those of us, who are victorious and triumphant!

Let us fear, neither the temptations nor the tempter, for if we make use of the Shield of Faith and the Armour of Truth, they will have no power whatsoever, over us.

… Let us also shun both spiritual avarice and the ambition which occasions so much disorder in our hearts and so greatly impedes our perfection.
The noonday devil will be powerless in causing us to fail in our firm and steadfast resolution, to serve God generously and as perfectly as possible, in this life, so that after this life, we shall go to enjoy Him forever. May He be blessed ! Amen.” – (Extract-Sermon 1st Sunday of Lent – 13 February 1622).

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SLOTH, VENIAL SIN

Thought for the Day – 5 February – IDLENESS

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

IDLENESS

“There is another weighty reason which should prevent us from living in idleness.
The Holy Spirit warns us that: “Idleness is an apt teacher of mischief” (Ecclus 33:29) and “he who follows idle pursuits, is a fool” (Prov 12:11).
In other words, sloth is a great studity and is the father of the vices.
If anyone is inactive, he learns nothing.
Since our bodily and spiritual faculties were made for action, it necessarily follows that when they are not working for a good or useful purpose, they find an outlet in other directions, which lead to disorder and sin.
Without work and prayer, there is only inactivity which leads to sin.
It is fatal to remain idle.
God warns us that we must render an account of every idle work (Mt 12:36).

St Thomas Aquinas notes that an idle word is usually a venial sin but can also be a mortal sin (Summa Theologiae II-II, q 72, a 5).
What should be said then of those who live in idleness, while there is so much work to be done for the glory of God, for our own good and for the good of others?
Anyone who loves God is never idle, says St Jerome.
The love of God works wonderful things – if it does not, it cannot be called love!

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/02/05/thought-for-the-day-5-february-idleness/
PART TWO:
https://anastpaul.com/2022/02/05/thought-for-the-day-5-february-idleness-2/

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on PRIESTS, the PRIESTHOOD and CONSECRATED LIFE, QUOTES on SLOTH, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 4 February – ‘ … But to those who are industrious, an even more lavish gift will be presented.’

One Minute Reflection – 4 February – St Andrew Corsini O.Carm (1302-1373) Bishop, Confessor – Sirach 44:16-27; 45:3-20, Matthew 25:14-23 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one—to each according to his ability. Then he went away. Immediately …” – Matthew 25:15

REFLECTION – “The man who is the landowner is actually the Creator and Lord of all. The Word compares the time the landowner spends away from home, in the parable, to either the Ascension of Christ into Heaven, or, at any rate, to the unseen and invisible character of the Divine Nature. Now, one must conceive of the property of God, as those in each country and city who believe in Him. He calls His servants, those who, according to the times, Christ crowns with the glory of the Priesthood. For the holy Paul writes, “No-one takes this honour upon himself; he must be called by God.

He hands over [His property] to those who are under Him, to each giving a spiritual gift, so that he might have character and aptitude. We think that this distribution of the talents, is not supplied to the household servants in equal measure because, each is quite different from the other, in their understanding. Immediately they head out for their labours, He says, directly, indicating to us here, that apart from the procrastination of one, they are fit to carry out the work of God.

Surely those who are bound by fear and laziness will evolve into the worst evils. For he buried, Jesus says, the talent given to him, in the earth. He kept the gift hidden, making it unprofitable for others and useless for himself. For that very reason, the talent is taken away from him and will be given to the one who is already rich. The Spirit has departed from such as these and the gift of the Divine gifts. But to those who are industrious, an even more lavish gift will be presented.” – St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Archbishop of Alexandria, Father and Doctor of the Church (Fragment 283)

PRAYER – O God, Who establishes ever new examples of virtue in Thy Church, grant that Thy people may follow the footsteps of blessed Andrew, Thy Confessor and Bishop, so that they may also obtain his reward. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, DOMINICAN OP, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, FATHERS of the Church, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, OUR Cross, QUOTES on ANGER, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 20 January – Blessed are you who are poor …

Quote/s of the Day – 20 January – St Fabian, Pope, and St Sebastian – Martyrs – Hebrews 11:33-39, Luke 6:17-23 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Blessed are you who are poor,
for yours is the Kingdom of God.

Luke 6:20

“If the poison of pride is swelling up in you,
turn to the Eucharist and that Bread,
Which is your God humbling and disguising Himself,
will teach you humility.

If the fever of selfish greed rages in you,
feed on this Bread and you will learn generosity.

If the cold wind of coveting withers you,
hasten to the Bread of Angels and charity
will come to blossom in your heart.

If you feel the itch of intemperance,
nourish yourself with the Flesh and Blood of Christ,
Who practiced heroic self-control during His earthly life
and you will become temperate.

If you are lazy and sluggish about spiritual things,
strengthen yourself with this heavenly Food
and you will grow fervent.

Lastly, if you feel scorched by the fever of impurity,
go to the banquet of the Angels
and the spotless Flesh of Christ,
will make you pure and chaste
.”

St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444)
Father and Doctor

For everyone who exalts himself,
shall be humbled and he
who humbles himself, shall be exalted.

Luke 14:11

We must erect the mystical ladder of Jacob,
where Angels, ascending and descending,
appeared to him.
Ascent and descent means,
that we go downward when we exalt ourselves
and rise, when we are humbled.
The ladder represents our life in this world,
which our Lord erects to Heaven,
when our heart is humbled.
The sides of the ladder represent our soul and body,
sides between which,
God has placed several rungs of humility and, discipline,
whereby we are to ascend
if we would answer His call.”

(Rule of Benedict #7)

St Benedict (480-547)
Father of the Church

“If you seek an example of humility,
look upon Him Who is Crucified,
although He was God, He chose to be judged
by Pontius Pilate and put to death. …
If you seek an example of obedience,
imitate Him Who was obedient to the Father
“even to death” (Phil 2:8).
“For just as through the disobedience
of one person, Adam,
the many were made sinners,
so through the obedience of One,
the many will be made righteous” (Rom 5:19). .
If you seek an example of contempt
for earthly things,
imitate Him Who is “King of kings
and Lord of lords” (1 Tm 6:15),
“in whom are hidden
all the treasures of wisdom
and knowledge” (Col 2:3).
On the Cross He was stripped naked,
ridiculed, spat upon, bruised,
crowned with thorns,
given to drink of vinegar and gall.

St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)
Angelic Doctor of the Church

When he Canonised St Thomas,
John XXII declared that
“every article he wrote was a miracle!”
One might say that St Thomas Aquinas
was raised up by God, for he gathered together,
the whole of human knowledge up to his own time
and interpreted it in the new light of Christianity.
… In spite of his greatness, however,
Thomas of Aquin, was a very humble man.
There is a good deal of truth
in Pascal’s remark
that a little knowledge makes the mind proud
but real wisdom, makes it humble.
We cannot all imitate the knowledge
of St Thomas Aquinas but we should all
imitate his humility.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

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

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

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

The Proper Use of Time

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

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

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

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

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on GOOD WORKS, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on MEDIOCRITY, QUOTES on MERIT, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on ZEAL

Thought for the Day – 9 August – The Parsble of the Talents

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

The Parable of the Talents

“Let us meditate on the parable concerning the talents.
A lord was preparing to go abroad and before he departed he called together his servants.
He distributed his assets among them in proportion to their abilities, giving five talents to the first, two to the second and one to the third.

After a long time, the master returned and asked his servants to render an account of the money entrusted to them
Those who had received respectively, the five and the two talents, returned the capital to their lord along with the profits which they had made, so that, in fact, each was able to hand back double the sum originally entrusted to him.
Their master praised their fidelity and zeal and rewarded them more handsomely than they could ever have expected.

Finally, the man who had received only one talent approached and said, “Master, I know that thou art a stern man; thou reapest where thou hast not sowed and gatherest where thou hast not winnowed and, as I was afraid, I went away and hid the talent in the earth. Behold thou hast what is thine. The master’s reply was stern. Wicked and slothful servant. Thou didst know that I reap where I do not sow and gather where I have not winnowed! Thou shouldst, therefore, have entrusted my money to the bankers and on my return, I should have received back my own with interest. Take away, therefore, the talent from him and …. cast him forth into the darkness outside, where there will be the weeping and the gnashing of teeth” (Cf Mt 25:14-30).

The meaning of this parable is clear.
We are all servants, to whom our heavenly Father has entrusted various talents.
Some have been given more than others.
By our own labour and industry, we must all make profitable use of the talents which we have received.
The ungrateful and slothful servant, who does not make good use of his talents, will be severely punished.
But a happy reward awaits the good and faithful servant, who has worked zealously all his life, for his Master’s interests until the talents which he has received, have produced an increase of sanctity in himself and in others.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on WORK/LABOUR

Thought for the Day – 10 March – The Hidden Life of Jesus

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

The Hidden Life of Jesus

“Jesus chose to be an ordinary workman.
He had power over the Angels of Heaven, over the sun and stars of the firmament, over the waves of the ocean and over all the elements,
By a single act of His Divine Will , He could multiply loaves and change water into wine.
Yet, He elected to earn His living by the sweat of His brow.
In His times, the artisan was held in low esteem and was very often a slave.
Manual labour was regarded as sordid and undignified.
Christ wished to sanctify manual work by His own toil.
He wished to teach men that, in the eyes of God, the hoe is as valuable as the pen.
There is no difference between driving a plough and wielding a sceptre, as long as a man is fulfilling his duty for the love of God.
The only thing in this regard which is displeasing to God, is laziness and inactivity.
Anyone who leads an idle life at the expense of others, is breaking God’s law, which commands everyone to work.

Let us follow the example of Jesus the Worker.
Let us avoid idleness, which is the father of vices and is opposed to the command of God (Cf Gen 3:19; 2 Thess 3:10).

Let no-one claim that there is no need for him to work because he has enough money to last him all his life.
There was far less need for Jesus to work in order to live, yet He chose to work as an ordinary labourer.
If we do not have to work for our own sakes, let us reflect on how much need there is to work for others and for the glory of God.
If justice does not compel us, charity does.
It makes very little difference whether a man goes to hell for lack of justice or for lack of charity!

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/03/10/thought-for-the-day-10-march-the-hidden-life-of-jesus/

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on TIME, The KINGDOM of GOD, The WILL of GOD

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

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

The Proper Use of Time

“The high value of the divine gift of time imposes an obligation on us to avoid laziness.
The obligation to avoid sin, is still greater.
Sin is the most serious way in which we can abuse this gift of God.
It is also an act of deep ingratitude, in that, we turn this treasure which God has bestowed on us, into a weapon to be used against the Giver of every good.
To use time properly, it is necessary to direct all our actions, intentions and desires towards God, Who is the source of our being and the goal of our earthly pilgrimage.

If everything we do, intend, or desire, springs from our love of God and is aimed at the manifestation of His glory and the expansion of His kingdom upon earth, then, even our most humble and apparently indifferent actions, are precious in the sight of the Mos High and receive His blessing.
But, if we are working for ourselves, for our own satisfaction and petty glorification, we ruin everything.
All that we do is barren.
If we seek ourselves instead of God, we shall hear Him say one day: “You shall have no reward with your Father in Heaven”
(Mt 6:1).

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in "Follow Me", LENT 2021, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, 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 MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on GRATITUDE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on TIME, The KINGDOM of GOD

Thought for the Day – 22 January – The Proper Use of Time

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

The Proper Use of Time

“The high value of the divine gift of time imposes an obligation on us to avoid laziness.
The obligation to avoid sin, is still greater.
Sin is the most serious way in which we can abuse this gift of God.
It is also an act of deep ingratitude, in that, we turn this treasure which God has bestowed on us, into a weapon to be used against the Giver of every good.
To use time properly, it is necessary to direct all our actions, intentions and desires towards God, Who is the source of our being and the goal of our earthly pilgrimage.

If everything we do, intend, or desire, springs from our love of God and is aimed at the manifestation of His glory and the expansion of His kingdom upon earth, then, even our most humble and apparently indifferent actions, are precious in the sight of the Mos High and receive His blessing.
But, if we are working for ourselves, for our own satisfaction and petty glorification, we ruin everything.
All that we do is barren.
If we seek ourselves instead of God, we shall hear Him say one day: “You shall have no reward with your Father in Heaven” (Mt 6:1).

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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

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

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

The Shortness of Time

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

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on TIME

Thought for the Day – 30 August – Perseverance

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

Perseverance

“He who has persevered to the end,” Jesus tells us, “will be saved” (Mt 10:22; 24:13).
Elsewhere He says that “no-one, having put his hand to the plough and looking back, is fit for the kingdome of God” (Cf Lk 9:62).
It is necessary, therefore, to persevere in goodness, if we wish to be saved.

It is easy to begin but, it is difficult to continue.
In a moment of fervour, perhaps, you promised to be holy.
Maybe some misfortune came your way, such as the loss of someone very dear to you and you were moved to meditate upon the vanity of earthly things and promised to dedicated yourself entirely to God.
In that moment, you experienced the truth of the words of Ecclesiastes, summarised in The Imitation of Christ: “Vanity of vanities and all is vanity but, to love God and serve Him alone” (Bk 1, c 1:4).

Unfortunately, your good resolutions wore away with time.
You may have been swept away once more by the deceptive pleasures of this world.
Or perhaps, your charity grew cold and in your tepidity, you gave into the violent onslaught of temptation.

Christian perseverance has three main enemies.
(1) Firstly, there is time, which slowly consumes this virtue.
You must conquer time by resolving to begin the battle anew every morning of your life.
(2) Then there is the devil, who goes about, as St Peter warns us, like a lion in search of his prey (Cf 1 Peter 5:8).
You must resist him by the strength of your faith.
(3) Finally, there is spiritual sloth, which easily invades the soul.
You must take your cue from St Paul’s exhortation: “My beloved brethren, be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labour is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor 15:58).

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, I BELIEVE!, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on PURITY of INTENTION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE WORLD, 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

 

“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 ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on COWARDICE, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SLOTH, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

bl nazju falzon pray for us 1 july 2020

Posted in HOLY WEEK, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on SILENCE, QUOTES on SLOTH, The PASSION

Thought for the Day – 11 April – Jesus is Condemned to Death

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

Jesus is Condemned to Death

“Pilate was neither wicked nor cruel.
He was a weak opportunist who placed his position as Governor of Judea and his own personal interests above everything else in life.
He was prepared, moreover, to adopt the meanest of compromises.
He had acquitted Jesus, because, he believed Him to be innocent.
But he panicked as soon as he heard the crowd shouting and the Jewish priests accusing him of being no friend of the Emperor.
Then, he had recourse to an expedient.
When he saw Jesus covered with blood, crowned with thorns and clothed in purple rags, he showed Him to the crowd, in the hope, that their frenzied hearts would be touched with compassion.
He said only a few simple words.
“Behold the man!”
He wished them to see the condition to which this man had been reduced, who had been accused and mocked by them.
Looking like a trampled worm, He would stir up pity in every heart.   In the crowd, there were people who had been enchanted by the glory of His heavenly teaching.
Some of them had listened to Him in Jerusalem only a few days previously, when He was greeted by tumults of applause.
Others had received favours and miracles from Him.
But the good folk remained silent, for they could not summon up the courage to express any sentiments of gratitude or of humanity, in that gathering.
A roar drowned the words of Pilate.
“Let Him be crucified!”

Sometimes, when we see what is good and just, a rebellious impulse suddenly rises up inside us.
Unfortunately, we may yield to it on occasion and stifle the higher inspirations, which we receive.
Let us resolve never to be guilty of weak or unworthy conduct towards Jesus and to obey at all costs, the dictates of a sound conscience.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

behold the man - bacci 11 april 2020 holy sat

Posted in QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on SLOTH, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 24 March – ‘Christian hypocrites, like these ….’

One Minute Reflection – 24 March – Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Lent, Readings: Ezekiel 47:1-9, 12, Psalm 46:2-3, 5-6, 8-9, John 5:1-16 and the Memorial of Blessed Didacus Joseph of Cadiz OFM Cap (1743–1801)

So the Jews said to the man who was cured, “It is the sabbath, it is not lawful for you to carry your pallet.”   But he answered them, “The man who healed me said to me, ‘Take up your pallet, and walk.’ ”…John 5:10-11

REFLECTION – “Christian hypocrites, like these, only interested in their formalities.   It was a Sabbath?   No, you cannot do miracles on the Sabbath, the grace of God cannot work on Sabbath days.   They close the door to the grace of God.   We have so many in the Church, we have many!   It is another sin.   The first, those who have the sin of sloth, are not able to go forward with their apostolic zeal, because they have decided to stand firm in themselves, in their sorrows, their resentments, in all of that.   Such as these are not capable of bringing salvation because they close the door to salvation.”… Pope Francis – Santa Marta 1 April 2014john 5 11 the man who healed me said - christian hypocrites - pope francis 24 march 2020

PRAYER – God, our Father almighty, You gave us Christ Your Son to be our Bread of life and the message of truth, justice and love.   May we live His lessons in every fibre of our being and thus pass from death to life.   May the prayers of our Blessed Virgin Mother, your Holy angels, saints and martyrs, of Blessed Didacus Joseph, be an inspiration and a balm in our trials.   Through Jesus our Lord with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.bl didacus joseph pray for us 24 march 2020

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on MISSION, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SLOTH, The LAST THINGS

Thought for the Day – 5 February – Idleness

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

Idleness

 

“We are entitled to set aside time for lawful repose and for meditation and prayer.
But real idleness is always a sin.
It can easily be the cause of graver faults and of our spiritual ruin.
God gave us material and spiritual powers, as our talents, which we must employ for profit and not bury uselessly in the earth.
The servant who received five talents from God and increased the sum by another five, was rewarded by the praise of his Lord and admission into the kingdom of Heaven.
He dealt in a similar manner with the other servant, who had received two talents and doubled them by his industry.
But the lazy servant, who buried the talent he had received and met his master with empty hands, was condemned and flung into the darkness of Hell (Cf Mt 25:15-30).
This is a frightening lesson which the Gospel teaches us.
It should make us think about the fact that one day we shall have to render an account to God of all the gifts which He has bestowed on us.
Has He given us a great deal?
If so, we shall have to account for it all.
Has He given us only a small amount?
Even so, we shall have to account for every bit of it!
Consider the immense responsibility which becomes ours, along with the gifts of God.
Let us resolve to employ these to the best of our ability, so that when we appear before Him, our hands will not be empty but filled with gains.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci