Posted in FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on HERESY, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, QUOTES on WEALTH/RICHES, SAINT of the DAY, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE

Quote/s of the Day – 16 September – St Cyprian’s Words of Wisdom for our times!

Quote/s of the Day – 16 September – The Memorial of Sts Cornelius & Cyprian

“The world is going mad
in mutual extermination and murder,
considered as a crime, when committed individually,
becomes a virtue, when it is committed by large numbers.
It is the multiplication of the frenzy,
that assures impunity to the assassins.”

“You cannot have God for your Father
if you do not have the Church for your mother.”

“There is one God and one Christ and one Church
and one Chair founded on Peter,
by the word of the Lord.
It is not possible to set up another altar
or for there to be another priesthood
besides that one altar and that one priesthood.
Whoever has gathered elsewhere, is scattering!”

“Their property held them in chains…
chains which shackled their courage
and choked their faith
and hampered their judgement
and throttled their soul…
If they stored up their treasure in heaven,
they would not now have an enemy and a thief
within their own household…
They think of themselves as owners,
whereas it is they rather, who are owned –
enslaved as they are to their own property,
they are not the masters of their money
but it’s slaves!”

“We have solemnly
renounced the world
and therefore,
whilst we continue in it,
we should behave
like strangers and pilgrims.”

“He [Christ], protects their faith
and gives strength to believers,
in proportion to the TRUST,
that each man,
who receives that strength,
is willing to place in Him.”

“The wretched bodies
of the condemned
shall simmer
and blaze
in those living fires.”

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

More from St Cyprian here:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/09/16/quote-s-of-the-day-16-september-the-wisdom-of-st-cyprian-of-carthage/

And St Cyprian’s letter to St Cornelius here:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/09/16/thought-for-the-day-16-september-a-faith-that-is-ready-and-unshaken-st-cyprian-of-carthage-to-st-pope-cornelius/

Posted in MARIAN QUOTES, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHER and all PRIESTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY, To JESUS through MARY

Quote/s of the Day – 6 June – St Norbert and St Marcellin Champagnat

Quote/s of the Day – 6 June – The Memorial of St Norbert (c 1080-1134) and St Marcellin Champagnat FMS (1789-1840)

On the day of his ordination, St Norbert said:

“O Priest! You are not of yourself because you are of God.
You are not of yourself because you are the servant and minister of Christ.
You are not your own because you are the spouse of the Church.
You are not yourself because you are the mediator between God and man.
You are not from yourself because you are nothing.
What then are you?
Nothing and everything.
O Priest!
Take care, lest what was said to Christ on the cross be said to you:
‘He saved others, himself he cannot save!”

o-priest-st-norbert- 6 june 2017

“You will never enjoy
the sweetness of a quiet prayer, 
unless you shut your mind,
to all worldly desires and temporal affairs.”

St Norbert (c 1080-1134)

you will never enjoy the sweetness of a quiet prayer - st norbert 6 june 2020

“All to Jesus through Mary,
all to Mary for Jesus.”

St Marcellin Champagnat (1789-1840)

all to jesus through mary, all to mary for jesus - st marcellin

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 4 December – The Statement of Faith by St John Damascene, Priest

Thought for the Day – 4 December – The Memorial of St John Damascene (676-749) – Father and Doctor of the Church

From The Statement of Faith by St John Damascene, Priest

You have called me, Lord, to minister to Your people.   O Lord, You led me from my father’s loins and formed me in my mother’s womb.   You brought me, a naked babe, into the light of day, for nature’s laws always obey Your commands.

By the blessing of the Holy Spirit, You prepared my creation and my existence, not because man willed it or flesh desired it but by Your ineffable grace  . The birth You prepared for me, was such, that it surpassed the laws of our nature  You sent me forth into the light by adopting me as Your son and You enrolled me among the children of Your holy and spotless Church.

You nursed me with the spiritual milk of Your divine utterances.   You kept me alive with the solid food of the body of Jesus Christ, Your only-begotten Son for our redemption. And He, undertook the task willingly and did not shrink from it. Indeed, He applied Himself to it as though destined for sacrifice, like an innocent lamb.   Although He was God, He became man and in His human will, became obedient to You, God His Father, unto death, even death on a cross.

In this way You have humbled Yourself, Christ my God, so that You might carry me, Your stray sheep, on Your shoulders.   You let me graze in green pastures, refreshing me with the waters of true teaching at the hands of Your shepherds.   You pastured these shepherds and now they, in turn, tend Your chosen and special flock.   Now, You have called me, Lord, by the hand of Your bishop to minister to Your people.   I do not know why You have done so, for You alone know that.

Lord, lighten the heavy burden of the sins through which I have seriously transgressed. Purify my mind and heart.   Like a shining lamp, lead me along the straight path.   When I open my mouth, tell me what I should say. By the fiery tongue of Your Spirit make my own tongue ready.   Stay with me always and keep me in Your sight.

Lead me to pastures, Lord and graze there with me  . Do not let my heart lean either to the right or to the left but let Your good Spirit guide me along the straight path.   Whatever I do, let it be in accordance with Your will, now until the end.

And you, O Church, are a most excellent assembly, the noble summit of perfect purity, whose assistance comes from God.   You in whom God lives, receive from us, an exposition of the faith that is free from error, to strengthen the Church, just as our Fathers handed it down to us.

St John Damascene, Pray for our Priests,

Pray for Us All!
Amen!st john damascene pray for us 4 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in MARTYRS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on FREEDOM, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on THANKSGIVING, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 12 August – From the Priest Ordained amidst the horrors of Dachau – A VICTOR IN CHAINS!

Quote/s of the Day – 12 August – The Memorial of Blessed Karl Marie Leisner (1915–1945) Priest, Martyr – Ordained in Dachau Concentration Camp

“Christ, You are my passion!”

“Christ, I give You my life
without reservation.
What You do with it,
You alone should determine.
Fiat!”

22 November 1939christ you are my passion - bl karl leisner 12 aug 2019.jpg

“God, I thank You for the days of this
burdensome disease and yet again for
the days spent unfree and imprisoned.
Everything has its meaning.
You only want what is extremely good for me.
With my whole heart, I pray for all
who are not well disposed toward me
and ask You to forgive them.”

11 November 1939

“The days of exterior captivity are
magnificent days of becoming
interiorly free for God,
who alone is the shelter and
stronghold of freedom… “

17 November 1939

“On the feast of St Stephen,
I celebrated my First Holy Mass.
For the first time,
I offered the Holy Sacrifice for
everyone, on the altar in our Chapel here.
You were all with me in spirit…”

30 December 1944on the feat of st stephen i celebratd - bl karl leisner 12 aug 2019.jpg

His last diary entry reads:
Good night
eternal, holy God,
dear Mother
Thrice Admirable…
Bless, too, my
enemies, O Lord!!

25 July 1945 (he died on 12 August 1945)good night eternal holy god - 12 aug 2019 bl karl leisner martyr.jpg

Blessed Karl Marie Leisner (1915–1945) Priest, Martyr, Pray for Us!

VICTOR IN VINCULIS – A VICTOR IN CHAINS!

Posted in MORNING Prayers, Papa FRANCIS, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 7 February – He Charged Them to take Nothing for their Journey

One Minute Reflection – 7 February – Thursday of the Fourth week in Ordinary Time, Year C. Gospel: Mark 6:7-13

He charged them to take nothing for their journey...Mark 6:8

REFLECTION – “The characteristic of the missionary’s style is, so to speak, a face, which consists in the poverty of means.   His accoutrement responds to a criteria of modesty. Indeed the Twelve have the order to “take nothing for their journey except a staff; no bread, no bag, no money in their belts” (6:8).   The Teacher wants them to be free and unhampered, without reserves and without favours, certain only of the love of the One who sends them, strengthened only by His Word, which they go to proclaim.   The staff and the sandals are the gear of pilgrims because that is what the messengers of the Kingdom of God are, not omnipotent managers, not irreplaceable officials, not celebrities on tour.”…Pope Francis – Angelus, 15 July 2018mark 6 8 - he charged them to take nothing - the teacher wants them to be free - pope francis 7 feb 2019.jpg

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, unhampered by any worldly ties, trusting only in Your loving and guiding hand.   Help us to give our hearts, minds, bodies, our all to You, serving faithfully all the days of our life.   May the prayers of our loving Mother, give us strength.   We make our prayer, through our Lord Jesus with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.blessed virgin mother of god pray for us 7 feb 2019.jpg

Posted in QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 22 January – The Memorial of St Vincent Pallotti SAC (1795-1850)

Quote/s of the Day – 22 January – The Memorial of St Vincent Pallotti SAC (1795-1850)

“How great is the dignity of the priesthood!
What a dignity, what a dignity!…
To be a priest!
What does that mean?
O God, my God, I do not understand it!
What does it mean to present
the holy, bloodless sacrifice
and to administer the sacraments!”
(Written to St Gaspar del Bufalo (1786-1837), just before being ordained, the founder of the Society for the Precious Blood, with whom Vincenzo contracted a deep spiritual friendship.)how great is the dignity of the priesthood - st vincent pallotti - 22 jan 2019.jpg

Before his First Holy Mass

“Not the intellect but God
Not the will but God
Not the heart but God
Not taste but God
Not touch but God
Not food and drink but God
Not clothing but God
Not tranquillity but God
Not the worldly goods but God.
Not riches but God.
Not honours but God.
Not distinction but God.
Not dignities but God.
Not advancement but God.
God in all
God always.”not-the-intellect-but-god-st-vincent-pallotti-22-jan-2018.jpg

“You must be holy in the way that God asks you to be holy.
God does not ask you to be a Trappist monk or a hermit.
He wills, that you sanctify the world
and your everyday life.”

St Vincent Pallotti (1795-1850)you-must-be-holy-st-vincent-pallotti-22-jan-2018.jpg

Posted in CHRIST the KING, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Quote/s of the Day -– 7 December – The Memorial of St Ambrose (c 340-397)- Father and Doctor of the Church

Quote/s of the Day -– 7 December – The Memorial of St Ambrose (c 340-397)- Father and Doctor of the Church

Note:  I am still unable to make images so these are taken from this site.

“Rise, you who were lying fast asleep…
Rise and hurry to the Church:
here is the Father,
here is the Son,
here is the Holy Spirit.”

rise-you-who-were-lying-fast-asleep-st-ambrose-my-pic-2017

“The Church of the Lord is built upon the rock
of the apostles among so many dangers in the world;
it therefore remains unmoved.
The Church’s foundation is unshakeable and firm
against assaults of the raging sea.
Waves lash at the Church but do not shatter it.
Although the elements of this world, constantly beat
upon the Church with crashing sounds,
the Church possesses the safest harbour
of salvation for all in distress.”

the-church-of-the-lord-st-ambrose-7-dec-2017

“All the children of the Church are priests.
At Baptism, they received the anointing
that gives them a share in the priesthood.
The sacrifice that they must offer to God
is completely spiritual – it is themselves.”

all-the-children-of-the-church-st-ambrose-7-dec-2017

“Let your door stand open
to receive Him,
unlock your soul to Him,
offer Him a welcome in your mind
and then you will see
the riches of simplicity,
the treasures of peace,
the joy of grace.
Throw wide the gate of your heart,
stand before the sun of the everlasting light.”

let-your-door-stand-open-st-ambrose-7-dec-2017

“If it is “daily bread,” why do you take it once a year? . . .
Take daily what is to profit you daily.
Live in such a way that you may deserve
to receive it daily.
He who does not deserve to receive it daily,
does not deserve to receive it once a year.”

if-it-ias-daily-st-ambrose-7-dec-2017

“When we speak about WISDOM,
we are speaking about CHRIST.
When we speak about VIRTUE,
we are speaking about CHRIST.
When we speak about JUSTICE,
we are speaking about CHRIST.
When we speak about PEACE,
we are speaking about CHRIST.
When we speak about TRUTH,
and LIFE and REDEMPTION,
we are speaking about CHRIST.”

St Ambrose (c 340-397)- Father and Doctor of the Churchwhen we speak - st ambrose - 7 dec 2017.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 15 August – The Memorial of St Simplicain (c 320-c 401)

Quote/s of the Day – 15 August – The Memorial of St Simplicain (c 320-c 401), Friend and Teacher of St Ambrose and the “spiritual father of my soul” of St Augustine, Fathers and Doctors of the Church

“Only the “new” person
can sing a new song to the Lord:
the person restored
from a fallen condition,
through the grace of God.
Let us sing a new song –
not with our lips
but with our lives!”

St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor of the Churchonly-the-new-person-no-2-st-augustine-15 aug 2017 - mem of simpliacianus

“All the children of the Church are priests.
At Baptism, they received the anointing
that gives them a share in the priesthood.
The sacrifice which they must offer to God
is completely spiritual – it is THEMSELVES!”

St Ambrose (340-397) Father and Doctor of the Churchall-the-children-of-the-church-no-2-st-ambrose-15 aug 2017- mem of st simpliacianus

Posted in MARTYRS, MORNING Prayers, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL HOMILIES, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 28 July 2018 – “The Shepherd Who Didn’t Run”

Thought for the Day – 28 July 2018 – The First Memorial of Blessed Stanley Francis Rother (1935-1981) Martyr
“The Shepherd Who Didn’t Run”

In Guatemala, Blessed Stanley spent his life in the service of his flock and, over time, he became one of them.   He helped his people cultivate farms for crops, advised them in all manner of life’s problems and even pulled teeth for them when necessary.   But he was more than a social worker; he was their father — the one who preached to them the Word of God in their native tongue, catechised them and their children and distributed the sacraments through which they grew ever closer to God.

The backdrop to his work and ministry in Guatemala is the political turmoil that wreaked havoc on the country in the 1970s and ’80s.   Eventually, Rother became a victim of the guerrilla fighting and was killed for defending the rights and dignity of his people. His death was no less noble than his life had been.   Though he had been warned multiple times that he was a target and despite having been home months before his death, Rother willingly chose to return to Guatemala to defend and remain close to his people.   He wrote to this effect just months before his death, saying, “the shepherd cannot run at the first sign of danger.   Pray for us that we might be a sign of the love of Christ for our people, that our presence among them will fortify them to endure these sufferings in preparation for the Kingdom.” (excerpt OSV)

This loving shepherd brings to mind the words of Pope Francis way back on 28 March 2013, just 2 weeks after his election to the Papacy, that our priests must be “shepherds living with the smell of the sheep.”   And so, we too, must be extending ourselves to our neighbour!

Prayer for the Canonisation of
Blessed Stanley Rother

O God, fount of all holiness,
make us each walk worthily in our vocation,
through the intercession of Your saints,
on whom You bestowed
a great variety of graces on earth.
Having graced Your Church
with the life of
your priest and martyr,
Blessed Stanley Rother,
grant that by his intercession
this humble flock may reach
where the brave Shepherd has gone.
Grant that Your Church may proclaim
him a saint living in Your presence
and interceding for us all.
Through Christ our Lord.
Amenprayer for the canonisation of bl stanley rother - 28 july 2018

Below is a plan and facade view of the huge Cathedral Shrine, planned to honour Blessed Stanley in Oklahoma. – http://stanleyrother.org/shrine/Church-at-Shrine-1church-1024x486

Blessed Stanley Rother, Pray for us!bl stanley rother pray for us no 2 - 28 july 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FRANCISCAN OFM, MARIAN QUOTES, PAPAL HOMILIES, Pope BENEDICT XVI, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY SPIRIT, The WORD, YouTube VIDEOS

Saint of the Day – 21 July – St Lawrence of Brindisi OFM Cap (1559-1619) Doctor of the Church –  The “Franciscan Renaissance Man”

Saint of the Day – 21 July – St Lawrence of Brindisi OFM Cap (1559-1619) Doctor of the Church.   He was created a Doctor of the Church by St Pope John XXIII in 1959 with the title Doctor apostolicus (Apostolic Doctor).   Patronages –  Brindisi, Italy.

St Lawrence is known as the “Franciscan Renaissance Man”  – he was a Religious member of the Franciscan Friars Minor Capuchin, a Priest, Theologian, Vicar General of the Franciscans, Language scholar, Apologist of immense and calm resources, Humanist, Philosopher, Biblicist, Preacher, Missionary, Professor, International Administrator, Confidant of Popes, Emperors, Kings and Princes, Diplomatic envoy, Army Chaplain, Military Strategist and Morale builder, Polemicist, Prolific writer.

Saint Lawrence of Brindisi

By Pope Benedict XVI
General Audience, 23 March 2011

I still remember with joy the festive welcome I was given in Brindisi in 2008.   It was in this city that in 1559 was born a distinguished Doctor of the Church, St Lawrence of Brindisi, the name that Julius Caesar Russo took upon entering the Capuchin Order.

He had been attracted since childhood by the family of St Francis of Assisi.   In fact, his father died when he was seven years old and his mother entrusted him to the care of the Friars Minor Conventual in his hometown.   A few years later, however, Lawrence and his mother moved to Venice and it was precisely there that he became acquainted with the Capuchins who in that period were generously dedicated to serving the whole Church in order to further the important spiritual reform promoted by the Council of Trent.

With his religious profession in 1575, Lawrence became a Capuchin friar and in 1582 he was ordained a priest.   During his ecclesiastical studies for the priesthood he already showed the eminent intellectual qualities with which he had been endowed.   He learned with ease the ancient languages, such as Greek, Hebrew and Syriac, as well as modern languages, such as French and German.   He added these to his knowledge of Italian and of Latin that was once spoken fluently by all clerics and by all cultured people.   Thanks to his mastery of so many languages, Lawrence was able to carry out a busy apostolate among the different categories of people.   As an effective preacher, his knowledge, not only of the Bible but also of the rabbinic literature, was so profound that even the Rabbis, impressed and full of admiration, treated him with esteem and respect.

As a theologian steeped in Sacred Scripture and in the Fathers of the Church, he was also able to illustrate Catholic doctrine in an exemplary manner to Christians who, especially in Germany, had adhered to the Reformation.   With his calm, clear exposition he demonstrated the biblical and patristic foundation of all the articles of faith disputed by Martin Luther.   These included the primacy of St Peter and of his Successors, the divine origin of the Episcopate, justification as an inner transformation of man, and the need to do good works for salvation.   Lawrence’s success helps us to realise that today too, in pursuing ecumenical dialogue with such great hope, the reference to Sacred Scripture, interpreted in accordance with the Tradition of the Church, is an indispensable element of fundamental importance. I wished to recall this in my Apostolic Exhortation Verbum Domini (n. 46).   Even the simplest members of the faithful, those not endowed with great culture, benefited from the convincing words of Lawrence, who addressed humble people to remind them all to make their lives consistent with the faith they professed.st lawrence of brindisi

This was a great merit of the Capuchins and of other religious Orders which, in the 16th and 17th centuries, contributed to the renewal of Christian life, penetrating the depths of society with their witness of life and their teaching.   Today too, the new evangelisation stands in need of well-trained apostles, zealous and courageous, so that the light and beauty of the Gospel, may prevail over the cultural tendencies of ethical relativism and religious indifference and transform the various ways of thinking and acting into genuine Christian humanism.

It is surprising that St Lawrence of Brindisi was able to continue without interruption his work as an appreciated and unflagging preacher in many cities of Italy and in different countries, in spite of holding other burdensome offices of great responsibility.   Indeed, within the Order of Capuchins he was professor of theology, novice master, for several mandates minister provincial and definitor general and finally, from 1602 to 1605, minister general.   In the midst of this mountain of work, Lawrence cultivated an exceptionally fervent spiritual life.   He devoted much time to prayer and, especially, to the celebration of Holy Mass — often protracted for hours — caught up in and moved by the memorial of the Passion, death and Resurrection of the Lord.St Lawrence of Brindisi (1)

At the school of the saints, every priest, as was emphasised frequently during the recent Year for Priests, may only avoid the danger of activism — acting, that is, without remembering the profound motives of his ministry — if he attends to his own inner life.

In speaking to priests and seminarians in the Cathedral of Brindisi, St Lawrence’s birthplace, I recalled that “the time he spends in prayer is the most important time in a priest’s life, in which divine grace acts with greater effectiveness, making his ministry fruitful. The first service to render to the community is prayer.   And, therefore, time for prayer must be given true priority in our life… if we are not interiorly in communion with God, we cannot even give anything to others.   Therefore, God is the first priority.   We must always reserve the time necessary to be in communion of prayer with Our Lord” (Address of Benedict XVI to priests, deacons and seminarians of the Archdiocese of Brindisi, Cathedral of Brindisi, 15 June 2008).

Moreover, with the unmistakable ardour of his style, Lawrence urged everyone and not only priests, to cultivate a life of prayer, for it is through prayer that we speak to God and that God speaks to us:  “Oh, if we were to consider this reality!”, he exclaimed. “In other words that God is truly present to us when we speak to him in prayer;  that he truly listens to our prayers, even if we pray only with our hearts and minds. And that not only is he present and hears us, indeed he willingly and with the greatest of pleasure wishes to grant our requests”.

Another trait that characterises the opus of this son of St Frances, is his action for peace. Time and again both Supreme Pontiffs and Catholic Princes entrusted him with important diplomatic missions, to settle controversies and to encourage harmony among the European States, threatened in those days by the Ottoman Empire.   The moral authority he enjoyed made him a counsellor both sought after and listened to.   Today, as in the times of St Lawrence, the world is in great need of peace, it needs peaceful and peacemaking men and women.  All who believe in God must always be sources and artisans of peace.st-lawrence-of-brindisi-into-battle

 

It was precisely on the occasion of one of these diplomatic missions that Lawrence’s earthly life ended, in 1619 in Lisbon, where he had gone to see King Philip III of Spain, to plead the cause of the Neapolitan subjects oppressed by the local authorities.

He was Canonised in 1881 and his vigorous and intense activity, his vast and harmonious knowledge, earned him the title of Doctor Apostolicus, “Apostolic Doctor”.   The title was conferred on him by St Pope John XXIII in 1959, on the occasion of the fourth centenary of his birth.   This recognition was also granted to Lawrence of Brindisi because he was the author of numerous works of biblical exegesis, theology and sermons.   In them he offers an organic presentation of the history of salvation, centred on the mystery of the Incarnation, the greatest expression of divine love for humankind.lawrence - my edit and enlargement

Furthermore, since he was a highly qualified Mariologist, the author of a collection of sermons on Our Lady entitled “Mariale”, he highlighted the unique role of the Virgin Mary, whose Immaculate Conception and whose role in the redemption brought about by Christ he clearly affirms.

With a fine theological sensitivity, Lawrence of Brindisi also pointed out the Holy Spirit’s action in the believer’s life.   He reminds us that the Third Person of the Most Holy Trinity illumines and assists us with his gifts in our commitment to live joyously the Gospel message.

“The Holy Spirit”, St Lawrence wrote, “sweetens the yoke of the divine law and lightens its weight, so that we may observe God’s commandments with the greatest of ease and even with pleasure”.

I would like to complete this brief presentation of the life and doctrine of St Lawrence of Brindisi by underlining that the whole of his activity was inspired by great love for Sacred Scripture, which he knew thoroughly and by heart and by the conviction that listening to and the reception of the word of God produces an inner transformation that leads us to holiness.

“The word of the Lord”, he said, “is a light for the mind and a fire for the will, so that man may know and love God. For the inner man, who lives through the living grace of God’s Spirit, it is bread and water but bread sweeter than honey and water better than wine or milk…. It is a weapon against a heart stubbornly entrenched in vice.   It is a sword against the flesh, the world and the devil, to destroy every sin”.

St Lawrence of Brindisi teaches us to love Sacred Scripture, to increase in familiarity with it, to cultivate daily relations of friendship with the Lord in prayer, so that our every action, our every activity, may have its beginning and its fulfilment in him.   This is the source from which to draw so that our Christian witness may be luminous and able to lead the people of our time to God….vatican.va Pope Benedict 

A lot more about St Lawrence here: https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/07/21/saint-of-the-day-21-july-st-lawrence-of-brindisi-o-f-m-cap-doctor-of-the-church/SOD-0721-SaintLawrenceofBrindisi-790x480

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, MORNING Prayers, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHER and all PRIESTS, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD

Thought for the Day – – 18 July – The Holy Father’s Prayer Intention for July “Pray for our Priests and their Pastoral Ministry”

Thought for the Day – – 18 July – The Holy Father’s Prayer Intention for July “Pray for our Priests and their Pastoral Ministry”

What joy did the Apostles feel after the Resurrection of Our Lord, at seeing the Master whom they had loved so much!
The priest must feel the same joy, at seeing Our Lord whom he holds in his hands.
Great value is attached to objects which have been laid in the drinking cup of the Blessed Virgin and of the Child Jesus, at Loretto.
But the fingers of the priest, that have touched the adorable Flesh of Jesus Christ, that have been plunged into the chalice which contained His Blood, into the pyx where His Body has lain, are they not still more precious?

The priesthood is the love of the Heart of Jesus.   

When you see the priest, think of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

St John Vianney (1786-1859) Patron of Priests

Prayer for Priests
By St John Vianney

God, please give to Your Church today
many more priests after Your own heart.
May they be worthy representatives
of Christ the Good Shepherd.
May they wholeheartedly devote themselves
to prayer and penance;
be examples of humility and poverty;
shining models of holiness;
tireless and powerful preachers
of the Word of God;
zealous dispensers of Your grace
in the sacraments.
May their loving devotion to Your Son,
Jesus in the Eucharist
and to Mary His Mother,
be the twin fountains of fruitfulness
for their ministry.
Amenprayer for priests by st john vianney - no 3 - 18 july 2018

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, DEVOTIO, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, Papa FRANCIS, Pope BENEDICT XVI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHER and all PRIESTS, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD

Quote/s of the Day – 18 July – The Holy Father’s Prayer Intention for July “Pray for our Priests and their Pastoral Ministry”

Quote/s of the Day – 18 July – The Holy Father’s Prayer Intention for July “Pray for our Priests and their Pastoral Ministry”holy fathers prayer intention for july 2018 - 1 july 2018

“He made them,
the vicars of His love.

St Ambrose (340-397)

Father & Doctor of the Churchhe made them the vicars of his love - st ambrose - 18 july 2018

“The power of the priest,
is the power of the divine person,
for the transubstantiation of the bread,
requires as much power,
as the creation of the world.”

St Bernardine of Siena (1380-1444)the power of the priest - st bernardine -2018

“St Bernard tells us that everything has come to us through Mary
and we may also say that everything has come to us through the priest,
yes, all happiness, all graces, all heavenly gifts.
If we had not the Sacrament of Orders, we should not have Our Lord.
Who placed Him there, in that tabernacle?
It was the priest.
Who was it that received your soul, on its entrance into life?
The priest.
Who nourishes it, to give it strength to make its pilgrimage?
The priest.
Who will prepare it to appear before God, by washing that soul,
for the last time, in the blood of Jesus Christ?
The priest – always the priest.
And if that soul comes to the point of death, who will raise it up,
who will restore it to calmness and peace?
Again the priest.
You cannot recall one single blessing from God,
without finding, side by side with this recollection,
the image of the priest.”st bernard tells us that all things - st john vianney on the priesthood - 18 july 2018

“If I were to meet a priest and an angel,
I should salute the priest before I saluted the angel.
The latter is the friend of God
but the priest holds His place.”

St John Vianney (1786-1859) Patron of Priestsif i were to meet a priest - st john vianney - 18 july 2018

“Day after day, it is necessary to learn,
that I do not possess my life for myself.
Day by day, I must learn to abandon myself,
to keep myself available for whatever He, the Lord,
needs of me at a given moment,
even if other things seem more appealing
and more important to me,
this means giving life, not taking it.”

Pope Benedict XVIday after day it is necessary to learn - pope benedict on the priesthood - 18 july 2018

Posted in MORNING Prayers, ON the SAINTS, PAPAL HOMILIES, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHER and all PRIESTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, The WORD, VATICAN Resources

One Minute Reflection – – 23 June – The Memorial of St Joseph Cafasso (1811-1860)

One Minute Reflection – – 23 June – The Memorial of St Joseph Cafasso (1811-1860)

“Peace be with you.   As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.”…John 20:21as the father has sent me - john 20-21 - st joseph cafasso - 23 june 2018

REFLECTION – “Not without a special and beneficial disposition of Divine Goodness have we witnessed new stars rising on the horizon of the Catholic Church: the parish priest of Ars and the Venerable Servant of God, Joseph Cafasso.   These two beautiful, beloved, providently timely figures must be presented today; one, the parish priest of Ars, as small and humble, poor and simple as he was glorious and the other, a beautiful, great, complex and rich figure of a priest, the educator and formation teacher of priests, Venerable Joseph Cafasso”….Pope Pius XI

PRAYER – Holy God, may St Joseph Cafasso’s example serve as a reminder to all to hasten towards the perfection of Christian life, towards holiness.   In particular, may St Joseph Cafasso, remind priests of the importance of devoting time to the sacrament of Reconciliation and to spiritual direction and to all, the concern we should have for the most deprived.   May we find help in his intercession and that of the Blessed Virgin Mary, to whom St Joseph Cafasso was very devoted and whom he called “Our beloved Mother, our consolation, our hope”.   St Joseph Cafasso, St John Vianney, please pray for all our priests!   We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, with You, in the union of the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.sts joseph cafasso and john vianney - pray for us and all priests - 23 june 2018

Posted in MARIAN QUOTES, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Quote/s of the Day – 6 June – The Memorial of St Norbert (c 1080-1134)

Quote/s of the Day – 6 June – The Memorial of St Norbert (c 1080-1134)

On the day of his ordination, St Norbert said:

“O Priest! You are not of yourself because you are of God.
You are not of yourself because you are the servant and minister of Christ.
You are not your own because you are the spouse of the Church.
You are not yourself because you are the mediator between God and man.
You are not from yourself because you are nothing.
What then are you?
Nothing and everything.
O Priest!
Take care, lest what was said to Christ on the cross be said to you:
‘He saved others, himself he cannot save!”

St Norbert (c 1080-1134)o-priest-st-norbert- 6 june 2017

“All to Jesus through Mary,
all to Mary for Jesus.”

St Marcellin Champagnat (1789-1840)all to jesus through mary, all to mary for jesus - st marcellin

Posted in CATECHESIS, MORNING Prayers, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHER and all PRIESTS, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD

22 April – Vocations Sunday:  Catechism on the Priesthood

22 April – Vocations Sunday: Catechism on the Priesthood

Vocations Sunday 

Catechism on the Priesthood

by St John Vianney  (1786-1859) Patron of Priests

        My children, we have come to the Sacrament of Orders.   It is a Sacrament which seems to relate to no one among you and which yet relates to everyone. This Sacrament raises man up to God.   What is a priest!   A man who holds the place of God – a man who is invested with all the powers of God. “Go,” said Our Lord to the priest; “as My Father sent Me, I send you.   All power has been given Me in Heaven and on earth.   Go then, teach all nations….  He who listens to you, listens to Me; he who despises you despises Me.”   When the priest remits sins, he does not say, “God pardons you”; he says, “I absolve you.”   At the Consecration, he does not say, “This is the Body of Our Lord;” he says, “This is My Body.”

St Bernard tells us that everything has come to us through Mary and we may also say that everything has come to us through the priest; yes, all happiness, all graces, all heavenly gifts.   If we had not the Sacrament of Orders, we should not have Our Lord.   Who placed Him there, in that tabernacle?   It was the priest.   Who was it that received your soul, on its entrance into life?   The priest.   Who nourishes it, to give it strength to make its pilgrimage?   The priest. Who will prepare it to appear before God, by washing that soul, for the last time, in the blood of Jesus Christ?   The priest – always the priest. And if that soul comes to the point of death, who will raise it up, who will restore it to calmness and peace?   Again the priest. You cannot recall one single blessing from God without finding, side by side with this recollection, the image of the priest.

Go to confession to the Blessed Virgin, or to an angel; will they absolve you?   No.  Will they give you the Body and Blood of Our Lord?   No.   The Holy Virgin cannot make her Divine Son descend into the Host.   You might have two hundred angels there but they could not absolve you.   A priest, however simple he may be, can do it; he can say to you, “Go in peace; I pardon you.”   Oh, how great is a priest!   The priest will not understand the greatness of his office till he is in Heaven.   If he understood it on earth, he would die, not of fear but of love.

The other benefits of God would be of no avail to us without the priest.   What would be the use of a house full of gold, if you had nobody to open you the door!   The priest has the key of the heavenly treasures; it is he who opens the door;  he is the steward of the good God, the distributor of His wealth.   Without the priest, the Death and Passion of Our Lord would be of no avail.   Look at the heathens, what has it availed them that Our Lord has died?   Alas!   they can have no share in the blessings of Redemption, while they have no priests to apply His Blood to their souls!

The priest is not a priest for himself.   He does not give himself absolution, he does not administer the Sacraments to himself. He is not for himself, he is for you.   After God, the priest is everything.   Leave a parish twenty years without priests, they will worship beasts.   If the missionary Father and I were to go away, you would say, “What can we do in this church? there is no Mass, Our Lord is no longer there,we may as well pray at home.”   When people wish to destroy religion, they begin by attacking the priest, because where there is no longer any priest there is no sacrifice and where there is no longer any sacrifice there is no religion.

When the bell calls you to church, if you were asked, “Where are you going?” you might answer, “I am going to feed my soul.”           If someone were to ask you, pointing to the tabernacle, “What is that golden door?”  “That is our storehouse, where the true Food of our souls is kept.” “Who has the key?   Who lays in the provisions?   Who makes ready the feast, and who serves the table?”   “The priest.” “And what is the Food?”   “The precious Body and Blood of Our Lord.”   O God!   O God! how You have loved us!   See the power of the priest;   out of a piece of bread the word of a priest makes a God.   It is more than creating the world…. Someone said, “Does St Philomena, then, obey the Cure of Ars?”   Indeed, she may well obey him, since God obeys him.   If I were to meet a priest and an angel, I should salute the priest before I saluted the angel.   The latter is the friend of God but the priest holds His place.   St Teresa kissed the ground where a priest had passed.   When you see a priest, you should say, “There is he who made me a child of God and opened Heaven to me by holy Baptism;  he who purified me after I had sinned;  who gives nourishment to my soul.”   At the sight of a church tower, you may say, “What is there in that place?” “The Body of Our Lord.” “Why is He there?”   “Because a priest has been there, and has said holy Mass.”

What joy did the Apostles feel after the Resurrection of Our Lord, at seeing the Master whom they had loved so much! The priest must feel the same joy, at seeing Our Lord whom he holds in his hands.   Great value is attached to objects which have been laid in the drinking cup of the Blessed Virgin and of the Child Jesus, at Loreto.   But the fingers of the priest, that have touched the adorable Flesh of Jesus Christ, that have been plunged into the chalice which contained His Blood, into the pyx where His Body has lain, are they not still more precious?   The priesthood is the love of the Heart of Jesus.   When you see the priest, think of Our Lord Jesus Christ and thank Him!

“Christ’s invitation to the priesthood
is an invitation to a way of life
that is athletic in its intensity
and heroic in its form.”

Bishop Robert Barronchrist's invitation to the priesthood - bishop robert barron - 22 april 2018 - vocations sunday

PRAYER FOR PRIESTS
By St John Vianney

God, please give to Your Church today
many more priests after Your own heart.
May they be worthy representatives
of Christ the Good Shepherd.
May they wholeheartedly devote themselves
to prayer and penance;
be examples of humility and poverty;
shining models of holiness;
tireless and powerful preachers of the Word of God;
zealous dispensers of Your grace in the sacraments.
May their loving devotion to Your Son Jesus
in the Eucharist
and to Mary his Mother
be the twin fountains of fruitfulness for their ministry.
Amenprayer for priests by st john vianney - vocations sunday - 22 april 2018

St John Vianney, Pray for our Priests!

st-john-vianney-pray-for-our-priests.2017

 

Posted in MARIAN QUOTES, MORNING Prayers, PAPAL ENCYLICALS, PAPAL HOMILIES, PAPAL MESSAGES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Quote/s of the Day – 7 February – The Memorial of Blessed Pope Pius IX (1792-1878)

Quote/s of the Day – 7 February – The Memorial of Blessed Pope Pius IX (1792-1878)

“The chisel is the pen of the sculptor.”the chisel is the pen - bvl pope pius IX - 5 feb 2018

“If we are the heirs of Christ,
let us remain in the peace of Christ.
If we are the sons of God,
we must be peacemakers….”
INTER MULTIPLICES – PLEADING FOR UNITY OF SPIRIT:   21 March 1853if we are the heirs of christ - bl pope pius IX - 7 feb 2018

” From the very beginning and before time began, the eternal Father chose and prepared for His only-begotten Son, a Mother, in whom the Son of God would become incarnate and from whom, in the blessed fullness of time, He would be born into this world.   Above all creatures did God so love her, that truly in her, was the Father well pleased, with singular delight.   Therefore, far above all the angels and all the saints, so wondrously did God endow her, with the abundance of all heavenly gifts, poured from the treasury of His divinity, that this mother, ever absolutely free of all stain of sin, all fair and perfect, would possess that fullness of holy innocence and sanctity than which, under God, one cannot even imagine anything greater and which, outside of God, no mind can succeed in comprehending fully.”- INEFFABILIS DEUS – THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION:  8 December 1854therefore, far above - bl pope pius IX - 7 feb 2018

“In the unbloody sacrifice of the Mass, celebrated by priests, the same life-giving victim is offered up.   This entreaty reconciles us to God the Father.   It “renews in a mysterious way the death of Christ, who having risen from the dead dies no longer. Death no longer has domination over Him.”   Still, He is sacrificed for us in the mystery of this sacred oblation.   No unworthiness or wickedness on the part of those offering it can ever defile this oblation.”- AMANTISSIMI REDEMPTORIS – ON PRIESTS AND THE CARE OF SOULS: 3 May 1858

Blessed Pope Pius IX (1792-1878)in the unbloody - bl pope pius IX - 7 feb 2018

Posted in MARIAN QUOTES, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Quote/s of the Day – 22 January – The Memorial of St Vincent Pallotti (1795-1850) and Blessed William Joseph Chaminade (1761-1850)

Quote/s of the Day – 22 January – The Memorial of St Vincent Pallotti (1795-1850) and Blessed William Joseph Chaminade (1761-1850)

Before his First Holy Mass

“Not the intellect
but God
Not the will
but God
Not the heart
but God
Not taste
but God
Not touch
but God
Not food and drink
but God
Not clothing
but God
Not tranquillity
but God
Not the worldly goods
but God.
Not riches
but God.
Not honours
but God.
Not distinction
but God.
Not dignities
but God.
Not advancement
but God.
God in all
God always.”not the intellect but god - st vincent pallotti - 22 jan 2018

“Remember. that the Christian life.
is one of action;
not of speech and daydreams.
Let there be few words
and many deeds
and let them be done will.”

St Vincent Pallotti (1795-1850)st-vincent-pallotti-remember-that-the-christian-life-2018

“Jesus made Mary
the companion
of His labours,
of His joy,
of His preaching,
of His death.
Mary had a part in all the
glorious, joyous
and sorrowful mysteries of Jesus.”jesus made mary - bl william joseph chaminade - 22 jan 2018

“The deposit of the Faith
is entirely in Mary.
At the foot of the Cross
she held the place of the Church. “

Blessed William Joseph Chaminade (1761-1850)the deposit of the faith = bl william joseph caminade - 22 jan 2018

Posted in MORNING Prayers, Pope BENEDICT XVI, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHER and all PRIESTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SPEAKING of .....

On the Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre, Cardinal-Priest (1835-1906) – 19 January

On the Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre, Cardinal-Priest (1835-1906) – 19 January

As today we have been thinking of all our Priests, let us pray:

Pope Benedict’s Prayer for Priests

LORD JESUS CHRIST,
Eternal High Priest, You offered Yourself to the
Father on the altar of the Cross and through the
outpouring of the Holy Spirit gave Your priestly
people a share in Your redeeming sacrifice.
Hear our prayer for the sanctification of our priests.
Grant that all who are ordained to the ministerial
priesthood may be ever more conformed to You,
the divine Master.
May they preach the
Gospel with pure heart and clear conscience.
Let them be shepherds according to Your own Heart,
single- minded in service to You and to the Church
and shining examples of a holy,simple and joyful life.
Through the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Your Mother and ours,draw all priests and the flocks
entrusted to their care to the fullness of eternal life where
You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
AMEN
BENEDICTUS PP. XVIpope-benedicts-prayer-for-priests-19-oct-2017

Posted in MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SPEAKING of .....

Quote/s of the Day – 19 January – The Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre, Cardinal-Priest (1835-1906) “Speaking of Priests”

Quote/s of the Day – 19 January  – The Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre, Cardinal-Priest (1835-1906)

“Speaking of Priests”

“The power of the priest,
is the power of the divine person;
for the transubstantiation of the bread
requires as much power
as the creation of the world.”

St Bernardine of Siena (1380-1444)the power of the priest - st bernardine - 19 jan 2018

“The worthy priest is
an angel of purity,
in mind and body,
a cherub of light and knowledge,
a seraph of love and Charity,
an apostle of zeal in work and sanctity,
a little god on earth
in power and authority,
in patience and benignity.
He is the living image of Christ in this world,
of Christ watching, praying, preaching,
catechising, working, weeping,
going from town to town,
from village to village,
suffering, agonising, sacrificing Himself
and dying for the souls
created to His image and likeness. . .
He is the light of those who sit in darkness
and in the shadow of death.
He is the destroyer of error,
schisms and heresies,
the converter of sinners,
the sanctifier of the just,
the strength of the weak,
the consolation of the afflicted,
the treasure of the poor.
He is the confusion of hell,
the glory of heaven,
the terror of demons,
the joy of angels,
the ruin of Satan’s kingdom,
the establishment of Christ’s empire,
the ornament of the Church. . .”

St John Eudes (1501-1680)the worthy priest is...-st john eudes - 19 jan 2018

“What tongue, human or angelic,
may ever describe a power so immeasurable
as that exercised by the simplest priest in Mass?
Who could ever have imagined that the voice of man,
which by nature hath not the power,
even to raise a straw from the ground,
should obtain through grace,
a power so stupendous,
as to bring from Heaven to earth,
the SON of GOD?”

St Leonard of Port Maurice OFM (1676-1751)what tongue,human or angelic - st leord of port maurice - 19 jan 2018

“St Bernard tells us that everything
has come to us through Mary;
and we may also say that everything
has come to us through the priest;
yes, all happiness, all graces, all heavenly gifts.”

“The priesthood is the love of the Heart of Jesus.
When you see a priest, think of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

“If we had not the Sacrament of Orders,
we should not have Our Lord.
Who placed Him there, in that tabernacle?
It was the priest.
Who was it that received your soul,
on its entrance into life? The priest.
Who nourishes it, to give it strength
to make its pilgrimage? The priest.
Who will prepare it to appear before God,
by washing that soul, for the last time,
in the blood of Jesus Christ? The priest –
always the priest.
And if that soul comes to the point of death,
who will raise it up,
who will restore it to calmness and peace?
Again the priest.
You cannot recall one single blessing from God
without finding,
side by side with this recollection,
the image of the priest.”

St Jean Marie Baptiste Vianney, the Cure of Ars (1786-1859) – Patron of Priestsst john vianney - 3 quotes on the priesthood - 19 jan 2018

To be Continued ……………….

smiley winking

 

Posted in MORNING Prayers, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHER and all PRIESTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY, SPEAKING of ....., The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 19 January – The Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre (1835-1906)

One Minute Reflection – 19 January – The Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre (1835-1906)

And Jesus called to him the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over unclean spirits… So they went out and preached that men should repent...Mark 6:7,12mark 6 - 7,12

REFLECTION – “‘O Priest! You are not yourself because you are of God.   You are not of yourself because you are the servant and minister of Christ.   You are not you own because you are the spouse of the Church.   You are not yourself because you are the mediator between God and man.   You are not from yourself because you are nothing. What then are you?   Nothing and everything.   O Priest!   Take care lest what was said to Christ on the cross be said to you: “He saved others, himself he cannot save!”‘ ...St NorbertO Priest! - St Norbert

PRAYER – O Lord of all, today we pray for our priests. All our priests from the Holy Father to our the newly ordained. Keep them holy and for yourself O Lord. Keep them in the image of Your Son, our High Priest, Jesus Christ. Keep them pure in heart, loving in spirit, filled with charity for all and most of all, with the greatest of love for You. Bless their hearts and their hands, that administer Your Eucharistic Son to your faithful. Grant that the prayers of Blessed Marcelo Spínola, may intercede for all our priests and ourselves. Amenblessed marcelo - pray for us