Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on PURITY, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The BEATITUDES

Thought for the Day – 21 May – Holy Purity

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

Holy Purity

Since Mary excelled so much in this virtue and had so great a love for it, she will obtain for us from God, the grace necessary for us to preserve it, as long as we pray humbly to her, especially in times of temptation.

Let us remember, that at Baptism, we became members of the Mystical Body of Christ and temples of the Holy Spirit (Cf 1 Cor 6:15-20).
We are obliged to avoid defiling this temple and making the Mystical Body of Christ a dwelling-place for the devil!

It is not true to say, that this is an impossible fight.
We know, from our own experience, that we can win.
We have often battled with, or fled from occasions of sin.
We have prayed and made sacrifices, in order to avoid sin and, with the help of God and the protection of the Blessed Virgin, we have won!
After our victory, we have felt elated and have experienced that peace, which only God’s grace can bestow.
If we have succeeded so many times, why cannot we do the same always?
There is no need to be afraid.
If we do all that we can, God’s grace will do the rest.

I can do all things in Him, Who strengthens me,” Phil 4:12) says St Paul.
God is faithful,” he writes elsewhere “and will not permit you to be tempted beyond your strength but, with the temptation, will also give you a way out, that you may be able to bear it” (1 Cor 10:13).

If we remain pure, we shall see God.
We shall see Him in the work of His creation in this world and we shall see and enjoy Him forever in Heaven.
Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God” (Mt 5:8).”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MARIAN QUOTES, MOTHER of GOD, PAPAL ENCYLICALS, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 14 April – Our Mother

Quote/s of the Day – 14 April – “The Month of the Blessed Virgin Mary” and Mary’s Day – Sirach 24:14 -16, John 19:25-27

Behold, thy mother”

John 19:27

“Go to Mary and sing her praises
and you will be enlightened.
For it is through her,
that the true Light
shines on the
sea of this life.”

St Ildephonsus (607-670)

O Mary,
you give assistance
to everyone endeavouring
to rise to God!

St Bridget of Sweden (c 1303 – 1373)

Wherefore, in the same holy bosom
of His most chaste Mother,
Christ took to Himself flesh
and united to Himself,
the spiritual Body formed
by those who were to believe in Him.
Hence Mary, carrying the Saviour
within her, may be said,
to have also carried, all those.
whose life was contained
in the life of the Saviour.
Therefore, all we,
who are united to Christ
and, as the Apostle says,
are members of His body,
of His flesh and of His bones (Eph 5:30),
have issued from the womb of Mary,
like a body united to it’s Head.

St Pius X (1835-1914)
Pope from 1903 to 1914

Encyclical “Ad diem illum laetissimum” #10-11

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD is LOVE, GOD the FATHER, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MARIAN QUOTES, MOTHER of GOD, QUOTES on CREATION, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PRAYER, Quotes on SALVATION, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, QUOTES on UNITY, The HOLY CROSS, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION

Quote/s of the Day – 9 May – St Gregory Nazianzen

Quote/s of the Day – 9 May – The Memorial of St Gregory Nazianzen (330-390) Bishop, Confessor, Father and Doctor of the Church

He wants you to become
a living force for all mankind,
lights shining in the world.
You are to be radiant lights
as you stand beside Christ,
the Great Light,
bathed in the glory of Him
who is the Light of Heaven.”

Many indeed are the wondrous happenings
of that time:
God hanging from a Cross,
the sun made dark
and again flaming out;
for it was fitting,
that creation should mourn
with its Creator.
The temple veil rent,
blood and water flowing
from His side –
the one as from a Man,
the other as from what was above man;
the earth shaken,
the rocks shattered because of the Rock;
the dead risen to bear witness
to the final and universal
resurrection of the dead.
The happenings at the sepulchre
and after the sepulchre,
who can fittingly recount them?
Yet not one of them, can be compared,
to the Miracle of my Salvation.
A few drops of Blood
renews the whole world
and do, for all men,
what the rennet does for the milk –
joining us and binding us together!

God accepts our desires as though
they were of great value.
He longs ardently for us
to desire to and love Him.
He accepts our petitions for benefits,
as though we were doing Him a favour.
His joy in giving,
is greater than ours in receiving.
So let us not be apathetic in our asking,
nor set too narrow bounds to our requests;
nor ask for frivolous things
unworthy of God’s greatness.

“If anyone does not believe
that Holy Mary
is the Mother of God,
such a one is a stranger
to the Godhead.

St Gregory Nazianzen (330-390)
Father & Doctor of the Church

Posted in "Follow Me", ArchAngels and Angels, DOCTORS of the Church, DOMINICAN OP, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The ASCENSION of the LORD, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 8 May – “A little while now and you shall not see me” – John 16:16

One Minute Reflection – 8 May – The Third Sunday after Easter – 1 Peter 2:11-19, John 16:16-22 and the Feast of the Apparition of St Michael the Archangel at Monte Gargano, Italy (492)

A little while now and you shall not see me” – John 16:16

REFLECTION – “The Ascension of Christ into Heaven is in accord with reason – firstly, because Heaven was due to Christ by His very nature.   It is natural for someone to return to the place from whence they take their origin.   The beginning of Christ is from God, Who is above all things.   Jesus says to the Apostles (Jn 16:28):  “I came from the Father and have come into the world and now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father” … The just ascend into Heaven but not in the manner that Christ ascended, namely by His own power, for they are taken up by Christ – “Draw me, we will run after thee.” (Sg 1:3)  Or indeed, we can say, that no-one but Christ has ascended into Heaven because the just do not ascend, except, insofar as they are members of Christ, Who is the Head of the Church. …   Secondly, Heaven is due to Christ because of His Victory.   For He was sent into the world to combat the devil and He did overcome him.   Therefore, Christ deserved to be exalted above all things – “I myself first won the victory and sit with my Father on His throne” (Rv 3:21)

Finally, the Ascension was owing to Christ because of His humility.   There never was humility so great as that of Christ Who, although He was God yet wished to become man and although He was the Lord, yet He wished to take the form of a servant and, as Saint Paul says:  “He was obedient even unto death” (Phil 2:7) and descended even into hell. Therefore, He deserved to be exalted even to Heaven, to God’s throne, for humility leads to exaltation.   “For whoever humbles himself will be exalted” (Lk 14:11) and, “the one who descended is also the one who ascended far above all the heavens” (Eph 4:10).” … St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) Doctor Angelicus/Doctor Communis (Commentary on the Apostle’s Creed).

PRAYER – O God, Who hast ordained and constituted the services of angels and men in a wonderful order, mercifully grant, that as Thy holy Angels alway do Thee service in Heaven, so, by Thy appointment, they may succour and defend us on earth. 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).

St Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle.
Be our safeguard against the
wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray
and do Thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host,
by the power of God,
cast into hell, Satan
and all the evil spirits
who prowl throughout the world
seeking the ruin of souls.
Amen.

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The LAST THINGS, The RESURRECTION

One Minute Reflection – 28 March – “Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up.” – John 2:19

One Minute Reflection – 28 March – Monday of the |Fourth Week of Lent – 3 Kings 3:16-28, John 2:13-25 and The Memorial of St John of Capistrano OFM (1386-1456)

“Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up.” – John 2:19

REFLECTION – “… In my view, both the temple and Jesus’ Body are a symbol of the Church… The temple will be rebuilt and the Body will rise on the third day… For the third day will rise in a new heaven and a new earth (2 Pet 3,13) when the dry bones, that is to say, the whole house of Israel (Ezek 37,11), will stand up on the great Day of the Lord and death will be vanquished…

Just as the Body of Jesus, subject to our vulnerable human condition, was fastened to the Cross and buried and then raised up, so the whole Body of Christ’s faithful was “fastened to the cross with him” and “now no longer lives” (Gal 2,19). For, like Paul, not one of them glories in anything any longer but in the Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ, which made of Him, One Crucified for the world and made of the world, one crucified for Him (Gal 6,14)… “For we were buried with Christ,” Paul says and adds, as if he had received some pledge of the resurrection: “And have been raised to life again with Him” (Rom 6:4-9) Everyone is walking in a new life, therefore but this new life is not yet the happy and perfect resurrection… If anyone is now placed in the tomb, one day he will rise again.” – Origen (c 185-253) Priest and Theologian, Father (Commentary on St John 10,20).

PRAYER – O God, Who, through blessed John, made Your faithful people conquer the enemies of the Cross by the power of the Most Holy Name of Jesus, grant, we beseech You, that by his intercession we may avoid the snares of our spiritual enemies and may be found worthy to receive from You the crown of justice.
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, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The PASSION, The WORD

The Second Sunday of Lent – 3 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – COME DOWN, PETER!,

The Second Sunday of Lent – 3 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Matthew 17:1-9

In You is the source of life and in Your Light Lord, we see light…” – Psalm 35(36)

And His face shone as the sun
and His garments became white as snow
.”

Matthew 17:2

THE LORD JESUS,HIMSELF shone bright as the sun, His raiment became white as the snow and Moses and Elias talked with Him (Matt 17:2-3).
Jesus Himself indeed, shone as the sun, signifying that “He is the light which lights every man that comes into the world” (Jn 1:9).

WHAT THIS SUN IS to the eyes of the flesh, that is He, to the eyes of the heart and what that is to the flesh of men, that is He to their hearts.

NOW His raiment is His Church. For if the raiment be not held together by Him Who puts it on, it will fall off. Of this raiment, Paul was, as it were, a sort of last border. For he says himself, “I am the least of the Apostles” (1 Cor 15:9) And in another place, “I am the last of the Apostles.Now in a garment the border is the last and least part.

WHEREFORE as that woman which suffered from an issue of blood, when she had touched the Lord’s hem, was made whole (Mk 5:34), so the Church, which came from out of the Gentiles, was made whole by the preaching of Paul. What wonder if the Church is signified by white raiment, when you hear the Prophet Isaias saying, “Though your sins be as scarlet, I will make them white as snow”?(Isa 1:18). Moses and Elias, that is, the Law and the Prophets, what avail they, except they converse with the Lord? Except they give witness to the Lord, who would read the Law or the Prophets? Mark how briefly the Apostle expresses this; “For by the Law is the knowledge of sin but now, the righteousness of God, without the Law is manifested:” behold the sun – “being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets” (Rom 3:20-21), behold the shining of the Sun.

PETER SEES THIS and as a man savouring the things of men says, “Lord, it is good for us to be here” (Matt 17:4) He had been wearied with the multitude, he had found now the mountain’s solitude; there he had Christ, the Bread of the soul. What! should he depart thence again to travail and pains, possessed of a holy love to God and thereby of a good conversation? He wished well for himself and so he added, “If Thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for Thee and one for Moses and one for Elias.

TO THIS the Lord made no answer but, notwithstanding, Peter was answered. “For while he yet spake, a bright cloud came and overshadowed them” (Matt 17:5). He desired three tabernacles – the Heavenly Answer showed him, that we have One, which human judgement desired to divide.

CHRIST, the Word of God, the Word of God in the Law, the Word in the Prophets. Why, Peter, dost thou seek to divide them? It were more fitting for thee to join them. Thou seekest three; understand, that they are but ONE. …

COME DOWN, PETER, thou were desiring to rest on the mount, come down, “preach the word, be instant in season, out of season, reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine” (2 Tim 4:2). Endure, labour hard, bear thy measure of torture; that thou may possess what is meant by the white raiment of the Lord, through the brightness and the beauty of an upright labouring in charity. …

THIS PETER UNDERSTOOD NOT YET when he desired to live on the mount with Christ. He was reserving this for thee, Peter, after death. But now He says Himself, “Come down, to labour in the earth; in the earth to serve, to be despised and crucified in the earth. The Life came down, that He might be slain; the Bread came down, that He might hunger; the Way came down, that Life might be wearied in the Way; the Fountain came down, that He might thirst and dost thou refuse to labour? `Seek not thine own.’ Have charity, preach the truth; so shall thou come to eternity, where thou shalt find security.” – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, Father and Doctor of Grace (Homily on the Transfiguration) (Matthew 17:1-9).

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SACRED SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The HEART, The HOLY CROSS

Ember Saturday in Lent – 12 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘… IF WE ARE STEADFAST …’

Ember Saturday in Lent – 12 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – 1 Thess. 5:14-23, Matthew 17:1-9

“Behold, O God, our Protector and look upon Your servants.” – Psalm 83:10,9

This is My beloved Son,
in Whom I am well pleased;
hear Him.”

Matthew 17:5

THE LORD REVEALS HIS GLORY in the presence of chosen witnesses. His body is like that of the rest of mankind but He makes it shine with such splendour that His face becomes like the sun in glory and His garments, as white as snow.

THE GREAT REASON for this Transfiguration was to remove the scandal of the cCoss from the hearts of His disciples, and to prevent the humiliation of His voluntary suffering, from disturbing the faith, of those who had witnessed the surpassing glory that lay concealed.

WiITH NO LESS FORETHOUGHT He was also providing a firm foundation for the hope of holy Church. The whole body of Christ was to understand the kind of transformation that it would receive as His gift. The members of that body were to look forward to a share in that glory which first blazed out in Christ their head.

THE LORD had Himself spoken of this, when He foretold the splendour of His coming: Then the just will shine like the sun in the Kingdom of their Father. Saint Paul the Apostle bore witness to this same truth when he said: I consider that the sufferings of the present time are not to be compared with the future glory that is to be revealed in us. In another place he says: You are dead and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, your life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with him in glory.

THIS MARVEL of the TRANSFIGURATION contains another lesson for the apostles, to strengthen them and lead them into the fullness of knowledge. Moses and Elijah, the law and the prophets, appeared with the Lord in conversation with Him. This was in order to fulfill exactly, through the presence of these five men, the text which says: Before two or three witnesses every word is ratified. What word could be more firmly established, more securely based, than the word which is proclaimed by the trumpets of both old and new testaments, sounding in harmony, and by the utterances of ancient prophecy and the teaching of the Gospel, in full agreement with each other?

THE WRITINGS of the two testaments support each other. The radiance of the Transfiguration reveals clearly and unmistakably the One Who had been promised by signs foretelling Him under the veils of mystery. As Saint John says: The law was given through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. In Him the promise made through the shadows of prophecy stands revealed, along with the full meaning of the precepts of the law. He is the One who teaches the truth of prophecy through His presence and makes obedience to the commandments possible through grace.

IN THE PREACHING of the holy Gospel all should receive a strengthening of their faith. No-one should be ashamed of the Cross of Christ, through which the world has been redeemed.

NO-ONE SHOULD FEAR to suffer for the sake of justice; no-one should lose confidence in the reward that has been promised. The way to rest is through toil, the way to life is through death. Christ has taken on himself the whole weakness of our lowly human nature. If then we are steadfast in our faith in Him and in our love for Him, we win the victory that He has won, we receive what He has promised.

WHEN IT COMES to obeying the commandments or enduring adversity, the words uttered by the Father should always echo in our ears: This is my Beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased; hear Him.” – St Leo the Great (400-461) Pope, Father, Doctor of the Church (An excerpt from Sermon 51)

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The WORD

First Sunday of Lent – 6 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘ … He could have kept the devil from Himself but …’

First Sunday of Lent – 6 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers

You who dwell in the shelter of the Most High,
shall abide in the shadow of the Almighty.”
Psalm 90:1

At that time, Jesus was led into the desert
by the Spirit, to be tempted by the devil.

Matthew 4:1

HEAR O GOD, my petition, listen to my prayer. Who is speaking? An individual, it seems. See if it is an individual: – I cried to you from the ends of the earth while my heart was in anguish. Now it is no longer one person, rather, it is one in the sense that Christ is One and we are all His Members. What single individual can cry from the ends of the earth? The one who cries from the ends of the earth is none other than the Son’s Inheritance. It was said to Him: Ask of me and I shall give you the nations as your inheritance and the ends of the earth as your possession. This Possession of Christ, this Inheritance of Christ, this Body of Christ, this One Church of Christ, this Unity that we are, cries from the ends of the earth! What does it cry? What I said before: Hear, O God, my petition, listen to my prayer; I cried out to you from the ends of the earth. That is, I made this cry to You from the ends of the earth; that is, on all sides.

Why did I make this cry? While my heart was in anguish. The speaker shows that he is present among all the nations of the earth in a condition, not of exalted glory but of severe trial.

OUR PILGRIMAGE ON EARTH cannot be exempt from trial. We progress by means of trial. No-one knows himself except through trial, or receives a crown except after victory, or strives except against an enemy or temptations.

THE ONE WHO CRIES from the ends of the earth is in anguish but is not left on his own. Christ chose to foreshadow us, who are His Body, by means of His body, in which He has died, risen and ascended into Heaven, so that the Members of His Body may hope to follow where their Head has gone before.

HE MADER US ONE WITH HIMSELF,when He chose to be tempted by Satan. We have heard in the Gospel how the Lord Jesus Christ was tempted by the devil in the wilderness. Certainly Christ was tempted by the devil. In Christ you were tempted, for Christ received His flesh from your nature but by His own Power gained life for you; He suffered insults in your nature but by His own Power gained glory for you; therefore, He suffered temptation in your nature, but by His own Power gained victory for you!

IF IN CHRIST, we have been tempted, in Him we overcame the devil. Do you think only of Christ’s Temptations and fail to think of His Victory? See yourself as tempted in Him and see yourself as victorious in Him. He could have kept the devil from Himself but if he were not tempted, he could not teach you how to triumph over temptation.” – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, Father, Doctor of Grace (“In Christ we suffer temptation and in Him we overcame the devil.” – An excerpt from his Commentary on the Psalms, Psalm 60).

Posted in CONFESSION, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PAPAL ENCYLICALS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 6 February – “Until the harvest” – – Matthew 13:30

One Minute Reflection – 6 February – The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany – Readings: Colossians 3:12-17, Matthew 13:24-30

Suffer both to grow until the harvest” – Matthew 13:30

REFLECTION – “Nor must one imagine that the Body of the Church, just because it bears the name of Christ, is made up during the days of its earthly pilgrimage, only of members conspicuous for their holiness, or, that it consists only of those whom God has predestined to eternal happiness. It is owing to the Saviour’s infinite mercy, that place is allowed in His Mystical Body here below, for those whom, of old, He did not exclude from the banquet (cf. Mt 9:11). For not every sin, however grave it may be, is such as of its own nature to sever a man from the Body of the Church, as does schism or heresy or apostasy. Men may lose charity and divine grace through sin, thus becoming incapable of supernatural merit and yet, not be deprived of all life, if they hold fast to faith and Christian hope and if, illumined from above, they are spurred on, by the interior promptings of the Holy Spirit to salutary fear and are moved to prayer and penance for their sins.

Let everyone then abhor sin, which defiles the mystical members of our Redeemer but,, if anyone unhappily falls and his obstinacy has not made him unworthy of communion with the faithful, let him be received with great love and let eager charity see in him a weak member of Jesus Christ. For, as the Bishop of Hippo remarks –
“it is better to be cured within the Church’s community than to be cut off from its Body as incurable members. As long as a member still forms part of the Body, there is no reason to despair of its cure; once it has been cut off, it can be neither cured nor healed.’”- Venerable Pius XII (1876-1958) – Pope from 1939 to 1958 – Encyclical – Mystici Corporis Christi, 1943.

PRAYER – All-powerful and ever-living God, splendour of true light and never-ending day, chase away the night of sin and fill our minds with the glory of Your coming. Take away our heart of stone and give us a heart of flesh, help us in our battle with sin and the devil. By our prayers, Your holy sacraments and the strength of the Holy Spirit, may we be ever vigilant of the evil one. Hear the prayers of our Queen and Mother, the Blessed Virgin of Mercy on our behalf dear Lord. We make our prayer through Christ, our Lord with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.

Posted in ADVENT QUOTES, CHRISTMASTIDE!, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The ANNUNCIATION, The HOLY TRINITY, The INCARNATION, The NATIVITY of JESUS

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

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

“And so, when God’s birth
is proclaimed to you,
keep silent.
Let Gabriel’s word be held in your mind
for nothing is impossible
to this glorious Majesty,
who humbled Himself for us
and was born of our humanity.

St Ephrem (306-373) Father & Doctor

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

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

“He came from Him,
from Whom He did not depart,
going forth from Him,
with Whom He stayed,
so that without intermission,
He was wholly in eternity,
wholly in time,
wholly was He found in the Father
when wholly in the Virgin,
wholly in His own Majesty
and in His Father’s,
at the time
when He was wholly in our humanity.

St Amadeus of Lausanne (1110-1159)

Posted in ACT of PERFECT CONTRITION, DIVINE MERCY, I BELIEVE!, INDULGENCES, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, NOVEMBER - Month of the SOULS in PURGATORY, PURGATORY, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HERESY, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on REPARATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The HOLY SOULS

Thought for the Day – 9 November – INDULGENCES

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

INDULGENCES

“Indulgences are among the means by which we can help to satisfy the Divine Justice for our own offences and for those of the faithful depared.

Unfortunately, very few Christians understand the true nature of indulgences.
As a result, they neglect to fulfil the conditions necessary to gain them.

Canon Law defines an indulgence as “the remission in the sight of God of the temporal punishment due to sins already forgiven, which, the proper ecclesiastical authority concedes from the treasury of the Church, for the living, by way of absolution and for the dead, by way of suffrage” (Canon 911).
The main requirement is to be in the state of grace, which sinners can attain by means of the Sacrament of Penance, or by an Act of PERFECT CONTRITION.
If properly made, Confession takes away sin and eternal punishment but, not temporal punishment.
This may be cancelled by means of penance, prayer and good works.
In the early days of the Church, the penitential system was most severe (I wish it were so again!)
According to the degree of gravity, different sins drew penances of days, weeks or months of fasting on bread and water.
As times changed, the Church reduced these penalties and granted indulgences instead.

What we may ask, is the theological basis for these indulgences?
It is the spiritual treasury which is at the disposal of the Church, made up of the infinite merits of our Redeemer and added to, by the merits of the Blessed Virgin and the Saints.
These merits are communicated to us by the Church by reason of the consoling Dogma of the Communion of Saints, according to which, the Church Militant, Suffering and Triumphant, constitutes one Mystical Body of which Jesus Christ is the Head.

The Church has power to dispose of this immense treasure by reason of the injunction given to her by her Founder, when He said to St Peter: “Whatever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven and whatever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven” (Mt 16:19).
There are no reservations – the injunction applies, not only to sin but, also to its punishment.
It is clear that indulgences are not merely a dispensation from the penitential discipline in the eyes of the Church, as certain heretics held and still hold but also, in the sight of God.
Indulgences reflect, both the mercy and the justice of God.
They reflect His justice because complete satisfaction is rendered by the merits of Jesus Christ.
They reflect His mercy because these merits are applied to us poor sinners and also, by way of suffrage, to the souls of our departed friends.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 9 November – ‘ … The true Temple, also contains buyers and sellers … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 9 November – “Month of the Holy Souls in Purgatory” –Feast Dedication of The Archbasilica of the Most Holy Saviour in the Lateran and the Memorial of Blessed Gabriel Ferretti OFM (1385-1456) – Gospel: John 2:13-22

He made a whip out of cords and drove them all out of the temple area… ” – John 2:15

REFLECTION – “The Apostle Paul says: “The Temple of God, which you are, is holy” (1 Cor 3:17), that is to say – all you who believe in Christ, believing even to loving. … All who thus believe are the living stones of which God’s temple is built (1 Pt 2:5), they are like the imperishable wood of which the Ark was built that the flood could not overwhelm (Gn 6:14). This temple – the people of God, human persons themselves – is the place where God answers those who pray. People who pray to God outside this temple cannot have their prayers, for the peace of the Jerusalem above answered, even though they are answered regarding particular material things that God grants, even to pagans. … But it is an altogether different thing to have one’s prayers answered in the matter of eternal life. This is only granted to those who pray inside God’s temple.

For someone who prays within God’s Temple prays within the peace of the Church, in the unity of Christ’s Body, since the Body of Christ is built up of the multitude of believers spread over all the world. … And someone who prays in the peace of the Church, prays “in spirit and in truth” (Jn 4:23) of which the former Temple was only a symbol.

In fact, it was for our instruction that our Lord cast out of the temple those men who were only seeking their own interest and who only went there to buy and sell. If that first temple had to undergo this purification, then it is clear, that the Body of Christ too, the true Temple, also contains buyers and sellers among those who pray there, that is to say, people only seeking “their own interests and not those of Jesus Christ” (Phil 2,21). … But the time will come when the Lord will cast out all those sinners.” – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, North Africa, Father and Doctor of Grace of the Church (Sermon on Psalm 130, # 1-2)

PRAYER – Almighty God, as we recall with joy, the Dedication of this house of Yours on each recurring anniversary, listen to Your people’s prayer and grant that our worship here may be a sincere and holy service, honouring Your Name and bringing us the fullness of redemption. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God for all eternity, amen.

Posted in "Follow Me", FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN TITLES, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, QUOTES on VIRTUE, The PASSION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 19 September – ‘Christian simplicity makes childhood its own.’

One Minute Reflection – 19 September – Readings: Wisdom 2: 12, 17-20; Psalm 54: 3-8; James 3: 16 – 4: 3; Mark 9: 30-37 – The Feast of Our Lady of La Salette

Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me.” – Mark 9:37

REFLECTION – “We Christians are Christ’s body and members, the Apostle Paul says (1Cor 12,27). At Christ’s Resurrection all His members were raised with Him and, as He passed from hell to earth, He made us pass from death to life. The word “Pasch” in Hebrew means “passover” or “passage”. Isn’t this mystery, a mystery concerning the passage from evil to good? And what a passing over it is! From sin to righteousness, from vice to virtue, from age to infancy. I’m speaking here about the infancy that pertains to simplicity, not to age. For virtues, too, belong to their age. Yesterday the decrepitude of sin was sending us downhill. But the Resurrection of Christ brings us to rebirth into the innocence of children. Christian simplicity makes childhood its own.

Children are without malice; they do not know deceit; they dare not strike. Thus this Christian child does not fall into a rage if he is insulted, nor defend himself if he is stripped, nor hit back if he is struck. Our Lord even requires him to pray for his enemies, relinquish both tunic and cloak to the thief and turn the other cheek to those who strike him (Mt 5,29f.).

Christ’s infancy surpasses human infancy… The latter owes its innocence to weakness, the former to virtue. Moreover, it is worthy of far greater praise: His hatred of evil comes from His Will, not His powerlessness.” – St Maximus of Turin (?-c 420) – Bishop (Sermon 58 ; PL 57, 363)

PRAYER – Grant us Lord, a true knowledge of salvation, so that, freed from fear and from the power of our foes, we may serve You faithfully in love and sorrow for our sins. May we, through the love You grant us, extend our love to all we meet and may the tears of the Holy Virgin of la Salette and of Sorrows, not reject our prayers but intercede for us, obtain for us the grace to love and follow our Lord Jesus above all else. May we console you by a holy life and so come to share the eternal life Christ gained by His Cross. Our Lady of La Salette, pray for us, through our Lord Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, God forever,amen.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, PAPAL ENCYLICALS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 24 July – The Mystical Body

Quote/s of the Day – 24 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Readings: Exodus 24: 3-8; Psalms 50: 1b-2, 5-6, 14-15; Matthew 13: 24-30

“Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field?
How then has it weeds?

Matthew 13:27

“Every kingdom devided
against itself
is laid waste.”

Luke 11:17

“No-one can have God as his father,
if he does not have the Church as his mother…
The Lord warned us of this when He said:
“Whoever is not with me, is against me
and whoever does not gather together with me, scatters.”
The person who breaks the peace and concord of Christ,
acts against Christ;
the person who gathers together,
outside of the Church,
scatters the Church of Christ.”

St Cyprian of Carthage (c 200- c 258)
Bishop and Martyr, Father of the Church
On the unity of the Church

“It is better to be cured within the Church’s community
than to be cut off from its Body as incurable members.
As long as a member still forms part of the Body,
there is no reason to despair of its cure;
once it has been cut off,
it can be neither cured nor healed.”

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

“And so we pray,
that, by the same grace,
which made the Church Christ’s Body,
all its members may remain firm
in the unity of that Body,
through the enduring bond of love.”

St Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533)
Bishop, Father of the Church

“For nothing more glorious,
nothing nobler,
nothing surely, more honourable
can be imagined, than to belong
to the One, Holy Catholic, Apostolic and Roman Church,
in which we become members of one Body
as venerable as it is unique;
are guided by one supreme Head;
are filled with one divine Spirit;
are nourished during our earthly exile
by one doctrine and one heavenly Bread,
until at last, we enter into
the one, unending blessedness of heaven.
But lest we be deceived,
by the angel of darkness,
who transforms himself into an angel of light,
let this be the supreme law of our love –
to love the Spouse of Christ,
as Christ willed her to be
and as He purchased her with His Blood.”

Pope Pius XII (1876-1958)
“Mystici Corporis Christi” 1943

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PAPAL ENCYLICALS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 24 July – “Until the harvest” – – Matthew 13:30

One Minute Reflection – 24 July – “Month of the Most Precious Blood” – Readings: Exodus 24: 3-8; Psalms 50: 1b-2, 5-6, 14-15; Matthew 13: 24-30

Suffer both to grow until the harvest” – – Matthew 13:30

REFLECTION – “Nor must one imagine that the Body of the Church, just because it bears the name of Christ, is made up during the days of its earthly pilgrimage, only of members conspicuous for their holiness, or, that it consists only of those whom God has predestined to eternal happiness. It is owing to the Saviour’s infinite mercy, that place is allowed in His Mystical Body here below, for those whom, of old, He did not exclude from the banquet (cf. Mt 9:11). For not every sin, however grave it may be, is such as of its own nature to sever a man from the Body of the Church, as does schism or heresy or apostasy. Men may lose charity and divine grace through sin, thus becoming incapable of supernatural merit and yet, not be deprived of all life, if they hold fast to faith and Christian hope and if, illumined from above, they are spurred on, by the interior promptings of the Holy Spirit to salutary fear and are moved to prayer and penance for their sins.

Let everyone then abhor sin, which defiles the mystical members of our Redeemer but,, if anyone unhappily falls and his obstinacy has not made him unworthy of communion with the faithful, let him be received with great love and let eager charity see in him a weak member of Jesus Christ. For, as the Bishop of Hippo remarks –
“it is better to be cured within the Church’s community than to be cut off from its Body as incurable members. As long as a member still forms part of the Body, there is no reason to despair of its cure; once it has been cut off, it can be neither cured nor healed.’”- Venerable Pius XII (1876-1958) – Pope from 1939 to 1958 – Encyclical – Mystici Corporis Christi, 1943

PRAYER – All-powerful and ever-living God, splendour of true light and never-ending day, chase away the night of sin and fill our minds with the glory of Your coming. Take away our heart of stone and give us a heart of flesh, help us in our battle with sin and the devil. By our prayers, Your holy sacraments and the strength of the Holy Spirit, may we be ever vigilant of the evil one. Hear the prayers of our Queen and Mother, the Blessed Virgin of Mercy on our behalf dear Lord. We make our prayer through Christ, our Lord with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.

Posted in "Follow Me", ASPIRATIONS and EJACULATIONS, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, INDULGENCES, JUNE-THE SACRED HEART, PAPAL PRAYERS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, SACRED HEART PRAYERS, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 22 June – “The road that leads to life” … Matthew 7:14

One Minute Reflection – 22 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Genesis 13: 2, 5-18, Psalms 15: 2-3a, 3bc-4ab, 5, Matthew 7: 6, 12-14

“The road that leads to life” … Matthew 7:14

REFLECTION – “This, beloved, is the way in which we found our salvation, Jesus Christ, the High Priest who offers our gifts, the patron and helper in our weakness (Heb 10:20; 7:27; 4:15). It is through Him, that we look straight at the heavens above. Through Him, we see mirrored, God’s faultless and transcendent countenance. Through Him, the eyes of our heart were opened. Through Him, our unintelligent and darkened mind shoots up into the light. Through Him, the Master was pleased to let us taste the knowledge that never fades, He who is “the radiance of His splendour, who towers as much above the angels, as the title He has inherited, is superior to theirs” (He 1:3-4) (…)

Let us take our body. The head is nothing without the feet and the feet are nothing without the head. The smallest organs of our body are necessary and valuable to the whole body, in fact, all parts conspire and yield the same obedience, toward maintaining the whole of the body (cf.1 Co 12:12f.).
Therefore, let the whole of our body be maintained in Christ Jesus and let each submit to their neighbour’s rights in the measure determined by the special gift bestowed on them. Let the strong care for the weak and the weak respect the strong; let the rich support the poor and the poor render thanks to God for giving them the means of supplying their needs; let the wise show their wisdom, not in words but in active help; the humble must not testify to themselves but leave it to another to testify in their behalf. Those who are continent must not boast, knowing that it is another who confers on them the ability to remain continent.

Let us, therefore, reflect brethren, of what clay we were made, what and who we were when we entered the world, out of what grave and darkness, our Maker and Creator has brought us into the world, where He has prepared His benefits before our birth. Since, then, we owe all these blessings to Him, we are obliged to thank Him in every way.” … St Pope Clement I (c 35 – c 99) – Pope from c 90 to c 99 – Letter to the Corinthians, § 36-38

PRAYER – Increase in us, Lord, Your gift of faith, so that the praise we offer You, may ever yield its fruit from heaven, May the Spirit pour into our hearts, that we may walk in Your light and become like You. May the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Grace and all Your Saints, help us in our striving for holiness. Through Christ, our Lord in union with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.
SWEET HEART of my JESUS, Make me love Thee ever more and more! – Indulgence 300 Days Everytime – Plenary Once a Month – Raccolta 162 – Bl Pius IX 26 November 1876.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, PAPAL ENCYLICALS, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, QUOTES on UNITY, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 21 May – Just One

Quote/s of the Day – 21 May – “Mary’s Month” – Readings: Acts 25:13-21, Psalm 103:1-2, 11-12, 19-20, John 21:15-19

“Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?”

John 21:15

“And the multitude of believers
had but one heart and one soul”

Acts 4:32

“No-one can have God as his father,
if he does not have the Church as his mother…
The Lord warned us of this when He said:
“Whoever is not with me, is against me
and whoever does not gather together with me, scatters.”
The person who breaks the peace and concord of Christ,
acts against Christ;
the person who gathers together,
outside of the Church,
scatters the Church of Christ.”

St Cyprian of Carthage (c 200- c 258)
Bishop and Martyr, Father of the Church
On the unity of the Church

“There were many apostles
but to one is said:
“Feed my sheep”

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

“And so we pray,
that, by the same grace,
which made the Church Christ’s Body,
all its members may remain firm
in the unity of that Body,
through the enduring bond of love.”

St Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533)
Bishop, Father of the Church

“For nothing more glorious,
nothing nobler,
nothing surely, more honourable
can be imagined, than to belong
to the One, Holy Catholic, Apostolic and Roman Church,
in which we become members of one Body
as venerable as it is unique;
are guided by one supreme Head;
are filled with one divine Spirit;
are nourished during our earthly exile
by one doctrine and one heavenly Bread,
until at last, we enter into
the one, unending blessedness of heaven.
But lest we be deceived,
by the angel of darkness,
who transforms himself into an angel of light,
let this be the supreme law of our love –
to love the Spouse of Christ,
as Christ willed her to be
and as He purchased her with His blood.”

Pope Pius XII (1876-1958)
“Mystici Corporis Christi” 1943

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 9 May – ‘… Our competence is from God …’

One Minute Reflection – 9 May – Sixth Sunday of Easter, Readings: First: Acts 10: 25-26, 34-35, 44-48; Psalm: Psalms 98: 1, 2-3, 3-4 (2b); Second: First John 4: 7-10; Gospel: John 15: 9-17

“Greater love than this no man hath, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” – John 15:13

REFLECTION – “Cloth of scarlet or purple is a very precious and royal fabric, not because of the wool but because of the colour. The actions of good Christians are of such great value, that heaven is given to us for them. However, … it is not because they come from us and are the wool of our hearts. Rather, it is because they are dyed with the blood of the Son of God. I mean, that the Saviour sanctifies our actions by the merits of His blood. A branch of the vine, united and joined to the stock, produces fruit, not by it’s own power but empowered by the stock. Now we are untied by charity to our Redeemer, as members to the head (Eph 4:15-16). That is why our fruits and good works, drawing their value from Him, merit life everlasting.

… We, ourselves, are branches that are dry, unprofitable and unfruitful. We are not competent of ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, our competence is from God, who has made us competent to be ministers (2 Cor 3:5-6) and able to do His will. Therefore, as soon as sacred love engraves on our hearts the name of our Saviour, our great Shepherd (1 Pet 2:25), we begin to bear delicious fruits for life everlasting.” …. St Francis de Sales (1567-1622) Doctor of Charity

PRAYER – Almighty, ever-living God, bring us to the joy of Your heavenly city, so that we, Your little flock, may follow where Christ, our Good Shepherd, has gone before us, by the power of His Resurrection. May our hearts overflow with the joy of His eternal presence, that in Him and through Him and with Him, we may attain the happiness of life eternal. May the prayers of the Blessed Virgin, guide us that we may always follow our Shepherd in faithful love. We make our prayer through Christ, our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God now and for all eternity, amen.

Posted in "Follow Me", QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 7 May – “You have not chosen me but I have chosen you and have appointed you” … John 15:16

One Minute Reflection – 7 May – “Mary’s Month” – Friday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: Acts 15:22-31, Psalm 57:8-12, John 15:12-17

“You have not chosen me but I have chosen you and have appointed you” … John 15:16

REFLECTION – “Just as the head and body of a man, form one single man, so the Son of the Virgin and those He has chosen to be His members, form a single man and the one Son of Man. Christ, is whole and entire, head and body, say the Scriptures, since all the members form one body, which, with its Head, is one Son of Man and He, with the Son of God, is one Son of God, who Himself, with God, is one God. Therefore, the whole body with its Head is Son of Man, Son of God and God. This is the explanation of the Lord’s words – Father, I desire that as you and I are one, so they may be one with us.

And so, according to this well-known reading of Scripture, neither the body without the head, nor the Head without the body, nor the Head and body without God, make the whole Christ. When all are united with God, they become one God. The Son of God is one with God by nature, the Son of Man is one with Him in His person; we, His body, are one with Him sacramentally. Consequently, those, who by faith, are spiritual members of Christ, can truly say that they are what He is – the Son of God and God Himself. But what Christ is, by His nature, we are as His partners, what He is of Himself in all fullness, we are as participants. Finally, what the Son of God is by generation, His members are by adoption, according to the text – As sons you have received the Spirit of adoption, enabling you to cry, Abba, Father. …

By the Spirit, from the womb of the Virgin, was born our Head, the Son of Man and by the same Spirit, in the waters of Baptism, we are reborn as His body and as sons of God. And just as He was born without any sin, so we are reborn in the forgiveness of all our sins. As on the cross, He bore the sum total of the whole body’s sins in His own physical body, so He gave His members the grace of rebirth, in order that no sin might be imputed to His mystical body.” – Blessed Isaac of Stella O.Cist.(c 1100 – c 1170) Cistercian Monk, Abbot, Theologian, Philosopher – An excerpt from his Sermon 42

PRAYER – Almighty God and Father, You gave us a new birth in holy Baptism and a new life in Your Son, who first loved us and gave His life for us. Grant us, we pray, the grace to love all as He did and bear much fruit, always striving after what He has taught who goes ahead of us, to lead us to You. May the prayers of His beloved Mother and ours, grant us help and inspiration as we travel the road to eternal life. Through Christ our Lord, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God now and for all eternity, amen.

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Thought for the Day – 21 April – The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian

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

The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian

“It is a great dignity to be a Christian.
By Baptism, we become sons of God, heirs to Heaven, temples of the Holy Spirit and members of the Mystical Body of Jesus, which is the Church.
God’s grace raises us to the supernatural order and makes us, as St Paul expresses it, sharers in the divine nature.
By the Sacrament of Confirmation, the Holy Spirit fortifies our faith and gives us the strength to resist the temptations of the devil and to fight like loyal soldiers, for the triumph in ourselves and in others, of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.
The Sacrament of Penance, is our plank of salvation in the shipwreck of sin.

Although, we are all wretched sinners, by this give of the divine mercy, we can recover our lost innocence and return to the grace and friendship of God.
Moreover, in order to prevent us from falling back into sin, Jesus give us Himself in the Blessed Eucharist, which is called, by St Thomas Aquinas, the greatest miracle of His infinite love (Opusculum 56, Officium de festo Corporis Christi, lectures 1-4).

But this is not all.
If it is our vocation for form a family, God consecrates our union at the altar and gives us the graces necessary, to sanctify it, so that it may produce a good Christian family.
If God has called us, on the other hand, to become spiritual fathers of the souls redeemed by His Precious Blood, He raises us to this high dignity, by the Sacrament of Holy Orders.
Finally, when we shall have come to the end of our mortal lives, the Priest will be still by our side, to wash away, by the Sacrament of Extreme Unction, the last traces of sin and to comfort us in our passage to eternity.
The whole life of a Christian, is a chain of favours which accompany him, from the cradle to the grave.
We should be grateful to God for the goodness with which He has treated us and continues to treat us.
We should co-operate generously with His gifts by recognising the lofty honour it is, to be a Christian and by living in accordance with this dignity.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, QUOTES on UNITY, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 13 April – “One heart and one soul” Acts 4:32

Quote/s of the Day – 13 April – Tuesday of the Second Week of Easter, Readings: First: Acts 4: 32-37, Psalm: Psalms 93: 1ab, 1cd-2, 5, Gospel: John 3: 7b-15

“And the multitude of believers
had but one heart and one soul”

Acts 4:32

Every kingdom divided against itself
is laid waste.”

Luke 11:17

“No-one can have God as his father,
if he does not have the Church as his mother…
The Lord warned us of this when He said:
“Whoever is not with me, is against me
and whoever does not gather together with me, scatters.”
The person who breaks the peace and concord of Christ,
acts against Christ;
the person who gathers together,
outside of the Church,
scatters the Church of Christ.”

St Cyprian of Carthage (c 200- c 258)
Bishop and Martyr, Father of the Church
On the unity of the Church

“No Christian should think of himself
as his own master
but each should rather so think and act,
as though given by God,
to be slave to his fellow brothers and sisters.”

St Basil the Great (329-379)
Father & Doctor

“By nature, each one of us
is enclosed, in his own personality
but supernaturally, we are all one.
We are made one body in Christ
because we are nourished by one flesh.
As Christ is indivisible, we are all one in Him.
Therefore, He asked His Father
“that they may all be One, as We also are one.”

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

“And so we pray,
that, by the same grace,
which made the Church Christ’s Body,
all its members may remain firm
in the unity of that Body,
through the enduring bond of love.”

St Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533)
Bishop, Father of the Church

Posted in "Follow Me", DOGMA, EASTER, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on HAPPINESS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, QUOTES on TRUTH, The RESURRECTION

Thought for the Day – 5 April – The Resurrection

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

The Resurrection

“Even as Jesus rose from the dead, so we shall rise again.
This is a Dogma of ou faith.
“I believe … in the resurrection of the body.”
When Job was seated on his dunghill, his body rotting with leprosy, deserted by everybody, scorned by his wife and reproved by his friends, he found comfort in this great truth.
“I know that my Vindicator lives and that he will at last, stand forth on the dust where I myself shall see and, not another – and from my flesh, I shall see God – my inmost being is consumed with longing” (Job 19:25-27).
St Paul describes this resurrection.
In the twinkling of an eye, he says, at the sound of the trumpet of the Eternal Judge, our bodies will reformed and will have life again.
We shall all rise but not all in the same manner.
The body, which was the companion of the soul during our mortal life, will once again be its companion and share with it, either the eternal glory of Heaven, or the everlasting pains of Hell (Cf 1 Cor 15).
We shall live forever like Jesus.
“I believe in life everlasting,” in everlasting happiness, in Heaven or in eternal damnation in Hell.
This great truth is a warning to us.
If we remember it all our lives, we shall not steer our course towards evil and towards Hell but, towards goodness and towards Heaven, where one day, we shall come to rest in a land of lasting happiness.

Our life should be a continual resurrection, a continual ascent towards perfection, which will raise us from sin, to the state of grace, from the state of grace, to fervour and from fervour to sanctity.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/04/15/thought-for-the-day-15-april-the-resurrection/

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The INCARNATION, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 7 March– My Life is Christ

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

My Life is Christ

“Through the work of the Incarnation and Redemption, Jesus assumed, not only a human body and soul so that He might be loved more and so, that He might redeem us but, He also assumed a mystical body, which is composed of all men in the state of grace.
The mystical body is the Church, of which Christ is the head.
We should all desire to be members of this mystical body.
To do so, we must live the life of Christ, which is His grace.
If we are separated from the life of Christ, we are nolonger Christians.
We are merely dead and rotten limbs, to use the metaphor of the vine tree and the branches.
“I am the vine,” says Jesus, “you are the branches. He who abides in me and I in him,” He continues, “he bears much fruit. If anyone does not abide in me,” He adds, “he shall be cast outside, as the branch and wither and they shall gather them up and cast them into fire and they shall burn” (Cf Jn 15:4-5).

“For the branch,” says St Augustine, “there can be no half-measures. Either it remains united with the vine, or it is thrown into the fire.”
The same holds true for each one of us.
We must choose, either close union with Jesus, or separation and spiritual death.
We must decide between a life of fervour in Christ, or a life of tepidity and sin.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/09/14/thought-for-the-day-14-september-my-life-is-christ/

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The TRANSFIGURATION, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 28 February – Transfiguration

Quote/s of the Day – 28 February – The Second Sunday of Lent, Readings: Genesis 22:1-2, 9, 10-13, 15-18, Psalms 116:10, 15, 16-17, 18-19, Romans 8:31-34, Mark 9:2-10

Transfiguration

“And a cloud overshadowed them
and a voice came out of the cloud,
“This is my beloved Son; listen to him.”

Mark 9:7

“… He was also providing a firm foundation
for the hope of holy Church.
The whole body of Christ was to understand,
the kind of transformation,
that it would receive as His gift.
The members of that body
were to look forward to a share
in that glory which first blazed out
in Christ their head.”

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

“In most holy contemplation
we shall be ever filled with the sight of God
shining gloriously around us,
as once it shone for the disciples
at the divine Transfiguration.
And there we shall be,
our minds away from passion and from earth
and we shall have a conceptual gift, of light from Him
and, somehow, in a way we cannot know,
we shall be united with Him
and, our understanding carried away,
blessedly happy,
we shall be struck by His blazing light.
Marvellously, our minds,
will be like those in the heavens above.”

Pseudo Dionysius the Areopogite (5th-6th Century)
(The Divine Names, 1)

“By His loving foresight,
He allowed them to taste for a short time,
the contemplation of eternal joy,
so that they might bear persecution bravely.”

The Venerable St Bede (673-735)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“At His Transfiguration
Christ showed His disciples,
the splendour of His beauty,
to which He will shape and colour
those who are His:
‘He will reform our lowness
configured to the body of his glory.’”

St Thomas Aquinas (1225 – 1274)
Doctor of the Church

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, EUCHARISTIC, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, HOLY COMMUNION, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, SAINT of the DAY, SPEAKING of ....., The HOLY EUCHARIST, The PASSION

Quote/s of the Day – 28 January – St Thomas speaks on the Holy Eucharist

Quote/s of the Day – 28 January – The Memorial of St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) Doctor of the Church

St Thomas speaks on the Holy Eucharist

“O precious and wonderful banquet
that brings us salvation
and contains all sweetness!”

“O how unspeakable is this Sacrament
which sets our affections ablaze with charity.
… It is the fulfillment of Christ’s Mystical Body.”

“The Eucharist is the Sacrament of Love.
It signifies Love,
It produces love.
The Eucharist is the consummation
of the whole spiritual life.”

“The proper effect of the Eucharist
is the transformation of man into God.”

“As Christ’s Passion does not produce it’s effect
on those who do not hold Him as they should,
so also, those do not attain heaven
through this Sacrament, who receive Him unworthily.
Accordingly, Augustine writes:
“The Sacrament is one thing, it’s virtue another.
Many receive from the altar and, receiving it, are dead.
Eat, therefore, heavenly bread, carry innocence to the altar.”
So it is not surprising, that those who do not keep a pure heart,
fail to gain the effect of the Sacrament.”

Adoro te Devote
Trans. Fr Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ (1844-1889)

Godhead here in hiding, whom I do adore,
Masked by these bare shadows,
shape and nothing more,
See, Lord, at Thy service low lies here a heart
Lost, all lost in wonder at the God Thou art.

Seeing, touching, tasting are in Thee deceived –
How says trusty hearing? that shall be believed,
What God’s Son has told me, take for truth I do,
Truth Himself speaks truly or there’s nothing true.

On the cross Thy godhead made no sign to men,
Here Thy very manhood steals from human ken –
Both are my confession, both are my belief,
And I pray the prayer of the dying thief.

I am not like Thomas, wounds I cannot see,
But can plainly call Thee Lord and God as he,
Let me to a deeper faith daily nearer move,
Daily make me harder hope and dearer love.

O Thou our reminder of Christ crucified,
Living Bread, the life of us for whom He died,
Lend this life to me then – feed and feast my mind,
There be Thou the sweetness man was meant to find.

Bring the tender tale true of the Pelican,
Bathe me, Jesu Lord, in what Thy bosom ran—
Blood whereof a single drop has power to win
All the world forgiveness of its world of sin.

Jesu, whom I look at shrouded here below,
I beseech Thee send me what I thirst for so,
Some day to gaze on Thee face to face in light
And be blest forever with Thy glory’s sight.
Amen

St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

Posted in "Follow Me", MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The HOLY CROSS, The KINGDOM of GOD, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 11 January – The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian

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

The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian

“This exalted dignity carries with it grave obligations.
The most important is to avoid sin.
Who could dare to take the Crucifix and fling it in the mud?
“You are the body of Christ,” St Paul tells us, “member for member” (Cf 1 Cor 12:27).
A man who surrenders himself to sin, therefore, throws the body of Christ into the mud and profanes the temple of the Holy Spirit.
If we sincerely appreciate our dignity as Christians, we cannot possibly give way to sin and destroy, in ourselves, the great work of the Redemption of Christ.
We should, moreover, practise virtue.
We should live in and for Jesus, like St Paul, who said, “For to me to live is Christ … ” (Phil 1:21).
Everyday, we must travel further along the difficult road of self-denial and love.
We must keep going forward, higher and higher towards the summit of perfection.
“You are to be perfect,” Jesus tells us, “even as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Mt 5:48).
Even this is not enough, however!
A genuine Christian is not satisfied with avoiding sin and sanctifying himself but, he tries, by every means at his disposal, by word, action, good example and sacrifice, to spread the Kingdom of Christ among his fellow-men.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One of ‘The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian’ here:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/04/29/thought-for-the-day-29-april-the-dignity-and-responsibility-of-being-a-christian/

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 5 January – “You give them something to eat.”… Mark 6:37

One Minute Reflection – 5 January – Christmas Weekday, Readings: 1 John 4:7-10Psalms 72:1-23-4,7-8Mark 6:34-44

But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.”… Mark 6:37

REFLECTION – “Let us take note of the disciples’ trusting abandonment to God’s providence in life’s greatest necessities and their disdain for a life of luxury – there were twelve of them and they only had five loaves and two fish. They were not bothered by bodily things but dedicated all their zeal to the things of the soul. Moreover, they did not keep these provisions for themselves, they handed them over to the Saviour at once when He asked them for them. Let us learn from this example, to share what we have, with those in need, even if we only have a little. When Jesus asks them to bring the five loaves, they don’t say: “What will there be for us later on? Where will we find what is necessary for our own needs?” They obey promptly …
Taking the loaves, then, the Lord broke them and entrusted the honour of distributing them to the disciples. He did not just want to honour them by this holy service but desired them to take part in the miracle, so as to be wholly convinced witnesses to it and, not forget what had taken place under their own eyes …. It is through them, that He made the people sit down and, that He distributed the bread, so that each one of them, might bear witness to the miracle accomplished at their hands …
Everything in this event – the desert place, the bare ground, the small supply of bread and fish, the distribution of these same things to everyone without distinction, each one of them having the same as their neighbour – all this teaches us humility, frugality and fraternal charity. To love one another equally, to place everything in common amongst those who are serving the same God – this is what our Saviour is teaching us here.” – St John Chrysostom (345-407) Bishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church

PRAYER – All-powerful, eternal God, splendour of true light and never-ending day, let our striving for Your kingdom not fall short through selfishness or fear, may the universe be alive with the Spirit and our homes be the pledge of the world redeemed. May our eyes see and our hearts have compassion, to all those who need us. May the intercession of our Holy Mother, St Gerlach and all the saints, be a strength and a comfort. Through Jesus, our compassionate and loving Redeemer, with the Holy Spirit, one God with You forever, amen.

Posted in FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARIAN TITLES, MOTHER of GOD, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PAPAL ENCYLICALS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 1 January – ‘… We are all children of Mary’

One Minute Reflection – 1 January – The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God and the Octave Day of the Nativity of the Lord, Readings: Numbers 6:22-27Psalms 67:2-35,68Galatians 4:4-7Luke 2:16-21

But Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart. … Luke 2:19

REFLECTION – “Is not Mary the Mother of Christ? Then she is our Mother also. And we must in truth hold that Christ, the Word made Flesh, is also the Saviour of mankind. He had a physical body like that of any other man and again, as Saviour of the human family, He had a spiritual and mystical body, the society, namely, of those who believe in Christ. “We are many, but one sole body in Christ” (Rom. xii., 5). Now the Blessed Virgin did not conceive the Eternal Son of God, merely in order, that He might be made man taking His human nature from her but, also in order, that by means of the nature assumed from her, He might be the Redeemer of men. For which reason, the Angel said to the Shepherds: “To-day there is born to you a Saviour who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11).
Wherefore, in the same holy bosom of His most chaste Mother, Christ took to Himself flesh and united to Himself, the spiritual body formed by those who were to believe in Him. Hence Mary, carrying the Saviour within her, may be said to have also carried, all those whose life was contained in the life of the Saviour. Therefore, all we who are united to Christ and, as the Apostle says, are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones (Eph 5:30), have issued from the womb of Mary, like a body united to it’s head.
Hence, though in a spiritual and mystical fashion, we are all children of Mary and she is Mother of us all. … If then, the most Blessed Virgin is the Mother at once of God and men, who can doubt that she will work with all diligence to procure that Christ, Head of the Body of the Church (Col 1:18), may transfuse His gifts into us, His members and above all, that of knowing Him and living through Him (I John 4:9)? Saint Pius X (1835-1914) – Pope from 1903 to 1914 – Encyclical “Ad diem illum laetissimum” §10-11

PRAYER – God, our Father, since You gave mankind a Saviour through the blessed Mary, virgin and mother and a heavenly mother through our Saviour, grant that we may feel the power of her intercession, when she pleads for us with Jesus Christ, Your Son, the author of life, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, God, forever and ever, amen.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

St Óscar Romero (1917-1980)
Priest Martyr

Posted in ACT of PERFECT CONTRITION, CONFESSION/PENANCE, DIVINE MERCY, I BELIEVE!, INDULGENCES, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, ON the SAINTS, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on HERESY, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on REPARATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY

Thought for the Day – 7 December – INDULGENCES

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

INDULGENCES

“Indulgences are among the means by which we can help to satisfy the Divine Justice for our own offences and for those of the faithful depared.

Unfortunately, very few Christians understand the true nature of indulgences.
As a result, they neglect to fulfil the conditions necessary to gain them.

Canon Law defines an indulgence as “the remission in the sight of God of the temporal punishment due to sins already forgiven, which, the proper ecclesiastical authority concedes from the treasury of the Church, for the living, by way of absolution and for the dead, by way of suffrage” (Canon 911).
The main requirement is to be in the state of grace, which sinners can attain by means of the Sacrament of Penance, or by an Act of PERFECT CONTRITION.
If properly made, Confession takes away sin and eternal punishment but, not temporal punishment.
This may be cancelled by means of penance, prayer and good works.
In the early days of the Church, the penitential system was most severe (I wish it were so again!)
According to the degree of gravity, different sins drew penances of days, weeks or months of fasting on bread and water.
As times changed, the Church reduced these penalties and granted indulgences instead.

What we may ask, is the theological basis for these indulgences?
It is the spiritual treasury which is at the disposal of the Church, made up of the infinite merits of our Redeemer and added to, by the merits of the Blessed Virgin and the Saints.
These merits are communicated to us by the Church by reason of the consoling Dogma of the Communion of Saints, according to which, the Church Militant, Suffering and Triumphant, constitutes one Mystical Body of which Jesus Christ is the Head.

The Church has power to dispose of this immense treasure by reason of the injunction given to her by her Founder, when He said to St Peter: “Whatever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven and whatever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven” (Mt 16:19).
There are no reservations – the injunction applies, not only to sin but, also to its punishment.
It is clear that indulgences are not merely a dispensation from the penitential discipline in the eyes of the Church, as certain heretics held and still hold but also, in the sight of God.
Indulgences reflect, both the mercy and the justice of God.
They reflect His justice because complete satisfaction is rendered by the merits of Jesus Christ.
They reflect His mercy because these merits are applied to us poor sinners and also, by way of suffrage, to the souls of our departed friends.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci