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

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

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

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

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

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

Rather, instead,

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

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

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

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One Minute Reflection – 10 July – ‘Citizens of Heaven.’

One Minute Reflection – 10 July – “Month of the Precious Blood” – Friday of the Fourteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: Hosea 14:2-10Psalm 51:3-48-912-1417Matthew 10:16-23 and the Memorial of St Canute of Denmark (c 1042-1086) Martyr

“Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.” … Matthew 10:16matthew 10 16 behold i send you out as sheep - 12 july 2019 and 10 july 2020

REFLECTION – “They live in the flesh but they are not governed by the desires of the flesh.   They pass their days upon earth, but they are citizens of heaven.   Obedient to the laws, they yet live on a level that transcends the law.   Christians love all men but all men persecute them.   Condemned because they are not understood, they are put to death but raised to life again.   They live in poverty but enrich many; they are totally destitute but possess an abundance of everything.  They suffer dishonour but that is their glory.   They are defamed but vindicated.   A blessing is their answer to abuse, deference their response to insult.   For the good they do they receive the punishment of malefactors but even then they, rejoice, as though receiving the gift of life.   They are attacked by the Jews as aliens, they are persecuted by the Greeks, yet no one can explain the reason for this hatred.

To speak in general terms, we may say that the Christian is to the world what the soul is to the body.   As the soul is present in every part of the body, while remaining distinct from it, so Christians are found in all the cities of the world but cannot be identified with the world.   As the visible body contains the invisible soul, so Christians are seen living in the world but their religious life remains unseen.   The body hates the soul and wars against it, not because of any injury the soul has done it but because of the restriction the soul places on its pleasures.  Similarly, the world hates the Christians, not because they have done it any wrong but because they are opposed to its enjoyments.

Christians love those who hate them just as the soul loves the body and all its members despite the body’s hatred.   It is by the soul, enclosed within the body, that the body is held together and, similarly, it is by the Christians, detained in the world as in a prison, that the world is held together.   The soul, though immortal, has a mortal dwelling place and Christians also live for a time amidst perishable things, while awaiting the freedom from change and decay that will be theirs in heaven.   As the soul benefits from the deprivation of food and drink, so Christians flourish under persecution.   Such is the Christian’s lofty and divinely appointed function, from which he is not permitted to excuse himself.” …  Ancient Christian writerFrom a letter to Diognetus (Nn. 5-6; Funk, 397-401)matthew 10 16 as sheep amidst the wolves - they suffer dishonour but that is their glory - diogenes 10 july 2020

PRAYER – Father of all holiness, guide our hearts to You. Keep in the light of Your truth, all those You have freed from the darkness of unbelief.   May our lives be the source of enlightenment to others and our faith and love every remain strengthened by Your grace.   Listen to the prayers of Your saint and angels on our behalf, as we long for our eternal home.   St Canute, we beg for your prayers.    We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amenst canute of denmark pray for us 10 july 2020

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Quote/s of the Day – 15 June – ‘But I say to you …’

Quote/s of the Day – 15 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Monday of the Eleventh Week of Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: 1 Kings 21:1-16, Psalm 5:2-3, 4-7, Matthew 5:38-42 and the Memorial of St Germaine Cousin (1579–1601)

“But I say to you,
offer no resistance to one who is evil.
When someone strikes you on your right cheek,
turn the other one to him as well.”

Matthew 5:39

but-i-say-to-you-offer-no-resistance-to-one-who-is-evil-matthew-5-39-17-june-2019 and 15 june 2020

“But I say to you,
love your enemies
and pray for those
who persecute you”

Matthew 5:44

matthew-5-44-but-i-say-to-you-love-your-enemies-4-aug-2018 and 15 june 2020

“We are treated as deceivers and yet, are truthful,
as unrecognised and yet, acknowledged,
as dying and behold we live,
as chastised and yet, not put to death,
as sorrowful yet, always rejoicing,
as poor yet, enriching many,
as having nothing and yet, possessing all things.”

2 Corinthians 8-10

2-corinthians-8-10-we-are-treated-as-deceivers-and-yet-are-truthful-17-june-2019 and 15 jue 2020

“You don’t love in your enemies
what they are
but what you would have them become,
by your prayers!”

St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor

you don't love in your enemies what they are but what you would have them become by your prayers - st augustine - 18 june 2018

“For true charity, beloved brethren,
is the soul of the whole of Scripture,
the strength of prophecy,
the structure of knowledge,
the fruit of faith,
the wealth of the poor,
the life of the dying.
So keep it faithfully;
cherish it with all your heart
and all the strength of your soul (cf Mk 12:30).”

St Caesarius of Arles (470-543)
Bishop and Monk

(Sermons to the people, no. 23, 4-5,
which draws its inspiration from Saint Augustine)

mt-5-38-39-an-eye-for-an-eye-discourse-for-true-charity-dear-brethren-st-caesarius-of-arles-18-june-2018 and 15 june 2020

“This Gospel passage is rightly considered,
the magna carta of Christian non-violence.
One then understands that for Christians,
non-violence is not merely tactical behaviour
but a person’s way of being,
the attitude of one who is so convinced
of God’s love and power
that, he is not afraid to tackle evil
with the weapons of love and truth alone.
… Here is the newness of the Gospel
which silently changes the world!
Here is the heroism of the “lowly”
who believe in God’s love and spread it,
even at the cost of their lives.”

Pope Benedict XVI

Angelus, St Peter’s Square,
Sunday, 18 February 2007

matthew 5 44 but i say to you love your enemies this gospel passage magna carta - pope benedict 23 feb 2020

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Quote/s of the Day – 2 April – St Francis of Paola

Quote/s of the Day – 2 April – The Memorial of St Francis of Paola OM (1416-1507)

“Fix your minds on the passion of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Inflamed with love for us, He came down from heaven to redeem us.
For our sake He endured every torment of body and soul
and shrank from no bodily pain.
He Himself gave us an example of perfect patience and love.
We, then, are to be patient in adversity.”

fix your minds on the passion - st francis of paola 2 april 2019

“See to it that you refrain from harsh words.
But if you do speak them,
do not be ashamed to apply the remedy
from the same lips, that inflicted the wounds.”

St Francis of Paola

see to it that you refrain from harsh words - st francis of paola -2 april 2020

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One Minute Reflection – 23 February – ‘The magna carta of Christian non-violence.’ 

One Minute Reflection – 23 February – Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: Leviticus 19:1-2, 17-18, Psalm 103:1-4, 8, 10, 12-13, 1 Corinthians 3:16-23, Matthew 5:38-48

“But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” … Matthew 5:44matthew-5-44-but-i-say-to-you-love-your-enemies-4-aug-2018

REFLECTION – “But what do his words mean?   Why does Jesus ask us to love precisely our enemies, that is, a love which exceeds human capacities?
Actually, Christ’s proposal is realistic, because it takes into account that in the world there is too much violence, too much injustice and, therefore, that this situation cannot be overcome except by countering it with more love, with more goodness.   This “more” comes from God, it is His mercy which was made flesh in Jesus and which alone can “tip the balance” of the world from evil to good, starting with that small and decisive “world” which is the human heart.
This Gospel passage is rightly considered the magna carta of Christian non-violence.   It does not consist in succumbing to evil, as a false interpretation of “turning the other cheek” (cf. Lk 6: 29) claims but in responding to evil with good (cf. Rom 12: 17-21) and thereby breaking the chain of injustice.
One then understands that for Christians, non-violence is not merely tactical behaviour but a person’s way of being, the attitude of one who is so convinced of God’s love and power that, he is not afraid to tackle evil with the weapons of love and truth alone.
… Here is the newness of the Gospel which silently changes the world!   Here is the heroism of the “lowly” who believe in God’s love and spread it, even at the cost of their lives.
Dear brothers and sisters, Lent, which will begin this Wednesday with the Rite of Ashes, is the favourable season in which all Christians are asked to convert ever more deeply to Christ’s love.
Let us ask the Virgin Mary, docile disciple of the Redeemer, who helps us to allow ourselves to be won over without reserve by that love, to learn to love as He loved us, to be merciful as Our Father in Heaven is merciful (cf. Lk 6: 36).” … Pope Benedict XVI – Angelus, St Peter’s Square, Sunday, 18 February 2007matthew 5 44 but i say to you love your enemies this gospel passage magna carta - pope benedict 23 feb 2020

PRAYER – O Lord my God, give me the strength to endure with patience the sufferings I encounter in my life.  Teach me to do my daily work for You alone and to do more than that in every way I can, for your greater glory.   Teach me, Holy Father, to obey the words of Your Son, to pray for those who persecute me and to suffer for the glory of the Kingdom.   May our Blessed and loving Mother, who had to bear the pain and forgive those who killed her Son, be at our side to help us to forgive, to pray for our enemies and offer our pain in reparation for our sins and those of the world. Amenmater dolorosa blessed virgin holy mother pray for us 23 feb 2020

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One Minute Reflection – 1 February – So awaken Christ, remember Christ, may Christ awaken in you.   Think of Him.

One Minute Reflection – 1 February – Saturday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time, Year A , Readings: 2 Sm 12:1-7A, 10-17, Psalm 51(50),12-13.14-15.16-17, Mk 4:35-41 and the Memorial of Blessed Luigi Variara SDB (1875-1923)

And a great storm of wind arose, and the waves beat into the boat so that the boat was already fillingBut he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion … Mark 4:37-38

REFLECTION – “With the Lord’s grace, I am going to talk to you about today’s gospel. With God’s help, I also want to encourage you not to let faith sleep in your hearts in the midst of the storms and swells of this world.   Without any doubt, the Lord Jesus Christ exercised His power over sleep, no less than over death and, when He was sailing on the lake, the Almighty could not succumb to sleep, if He did not want to do so.   If you think He did not have this power, it is because Christ is asleep in you.   If on the contrary, Christ is awake in you, your faith is also awake.   The apostle Paul said: “May Christ dwell in your hearts through faith.” (Eph 3:17)

So Christ’s sleep is the sign of a mystery.   The people in the boat represent the souls that go through the life of this world on the wood of the cross.   Furthermore, the boat is a figure of the Church.   Yes, truly, all the faithful are temples where God dwells and the heart of each one of them, is a boat sailing on the sea.   It cannot go down if the mind maintains good thoughts.   You have been insulted, it is the wind that is whipping you. You became angry, it is the rising tide.   Thus, when the wind is whistling and the tide is rising, the boat is in danger.   Your heart is in danger, it is shaken by the waves.   The insult aroused in you, the desire for vengeance.   And you took vengeance, thus giving way to the fault of another and you were shipwrecked.  Why?   Because Christ went to sleep in you, that is to say, you forgot Christ.   So awaken Christ, remember Christ, may Christ awaken in you.   Think of Him.” … St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo and Father & Doctor of the Church – Sermon 63, 1-3mark 37-38 and a great storm of wind arose - so christ's sleep is a mystery - st augustine 1 feb 2020 -

PRAYER – Waken us holy Lord, to Your presence in us, with us, now and forever.   Open our eyes to see Your presence and our ears to hear Your voice.   Teach us that You are always with us and Your presence is all we need to survive the storms and the winds of this world.   For You, just You, are our rock and our foundation, our ship and our harbour.   Grant that the prayers of Blessed Luigi Variara and all Your saints may serve to remind us of Your love and power.   Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.bl luigi variara 1 feb2020 pray for us

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Quote/s of the Day – 14 January – Speaking of: The devil

Quote/s of the Day – 14 January – Tuesday of the First week in Ordinary Time, Year A

Speaking of:  The devil

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

St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)the most powerful weapon - st vincent de paul 14 jan 2020.jpg

“Not only the devil is involved in spiritual warfare
but the Holy Spirit is equally involved, or more involved in it,
bringing men and women of goodwill,
the ability to overcome evil in their lives,
so that they too can say:
“Where evil abounded, grace super-abounded!” (Rom 5:20).”

St John Paul II

(The Holy Spirit (Dominum Et Vivificantem – 1986)not-only-the-devil-st-jp-22-oct-2017-and-2019 and 14 jan 2020 quotes on devil.jpg

“It is not enough for a Christian
to condemn evil, cowardice, lies
and use of force, hatred and oppression.
He must at all times be a witness to
and defender of justice, goodness, truth, freedom and love.
He must never tire of claiming these values
as a right both for himself and others.”

Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984) Martyrit-is-not-enough-for-a-christian-to-dondemn-bl-jerzy-19-oct-2019 and 14 jan 2020.jpg

Posted in ADVENT QUOTES, ADVENT REFLECTIONS, CHRISTMASTIDE!, Pope BENEDICT XVI, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on TRUTH, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, The NATIVITY of JESUS

Thought for the Day – The Weekdays of Advent – 20 December – God’s Sign

Thought for the Day – The Weekdays of Advent – 20 December

God’s Sign

“God’s sign is His humility.
God’s sign is that He makes himself small.
He becomes a child.
He lets us touch him and He asks for our love.
How we would prefer a different sign,
an imposing, irresistible sign of God’s power and greatness!
But His sign summons us to faith and love
and thus it gives us hope – this is what God is like.
He has power, He is Goodness itself.
He invites us to become like Him.
Yes indeed, we become like God,
if we allow ourselves
to be shaped by this sign,
if we ourselves learn humility
and hence true greatness;
if we renounce violence
and use only the weapons
of truth and love.”

Pope Benedict XVI (2009)

gods-sign-pope-benedict-19-dec-2017 and reworked for 20 dec 2019.jpg

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Thought for the Day – 21 October – The Mafia is Blasphemy

Thought for the Day – 21 October – The Memorial of Blessed Giuseppe “Pino” Puglisi (1937-1993) Priest, Martyr of the Mafiabl pino pope francis

Giuseppe “Pino” Puglisi was killed in Palermo on 15 September 1993, his 56th birthday.   A courageous defender of the poor in the Sicilian capital’s inner city neighbourhood of Brancaccio, Blessed Father Puglisi worked tirelessly to convince young people that there was a better life than organised crime.   He was extremely outspoken about the Mafia and preached against collusion, intimidation and omerta–the code of silence.   As the BBC reported, “He was famous for a rhetorical question, which he used as a catch phrase in order to encourage Sicilians to stand up and fight organised crime – ‘And what if somebody did something?’”   Despite numerous threats against him, he continued to teach the word of Christ and support men, women, and children in need with the hopes that they would peacefully join his anti-Mafia mission.

Once on trial, his killers revealed that they were haunted by Father Pino’s smile.   They recalled that when they gunned him down in front of his home and the church where he preached, he said, while looking them in the eyes, “I’ve been expecting you.”   Six men are currently serving life sentences for his murder.

Blessed Father Puglisi was declared a Martyr by Pope Benedict XVI and was Beatified on 25 May 2013, when more than 50,000 people attended the ceremony.

When Pope Francis visited Palermo on the 25th anniversary of the assassination of Blessed Pino Puglisi, he honoured this priest shot at point-blank range by the Mafia.  Pope Francis insisted that true happiness and a real change in Sicilian society will come only when people love and care for one another rather than trying to grab as much money and power as they can.bl pino 25th anniversary of the martyrdomcq5dam.thumbnail.cropped.750.422

“Having always leads to wanting.   I have something and immediately want another and another without end.   The more you have the more you want  . It’s a horrible addiction,” Pope Francis said, celebrating Mass in Palermo.

“On the other hand, one who loves finds himself and discovers how beautiful it is to help others has joy on the inside and a smile on the outside, just like Father Pino”   The pope’s visit to Sicily ended with an outdoor meeting with tens of thousands of teenagers and young adults in a Palermo square.

He urged them to dream and to love one another and to fight every form of corruption that flows from or builds up the Mafia.

“No to the Mafia mentality, to illegality, to the logic of crime, which are corrosive poisons for human dignity,” the pope said. “No to every form of violence.   Those who use violence are not human.   And the youngest of you, remember and promise me none of you will be bullies.”

“Promise me – No violence.   No bullying,” he said. “No to resignation.   Everything can change if people open their hearts and stand firm in hope.”

Blessed Pino Puglisi, Pray for Sicily, pray for us all!bl giuseppe pino puglisis pope francis at his tombbl pino puglisi pray for us 21 oct 2019 no 2

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Thought for the Day – 19 October – “One doesn’t suffer when one suffers for Christ”

Thought for the Day – 19 October – The Memorial of Bl Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyr

This beloved and unassuming young priest of Poland was a true hero of that tortured land during the Soviet Communist occupation.   Now a Blessed, Father Jerzy was beloved by everyone in his homeland, believers and non-believers alike, because of his bravery in the face of extreme hatred on the part of the Communist officials.   His story should be much more widely known than it is.

Never in good health, the strongest part of Father Jerzy were his hands.   His most beloved possessions were the crucifix and Rosary sent to him by St Pope John Paul II, a fellow countryman.   He was sickly his whole life, yet he never complained of illness or injury.   One day, when he was making toys with his brothers and sisters, a nail pierced his palm. Later, one of the children noticed blood dripping from his hand.   One of his siblings told the parents because young Jerzy did not want to bother anyone.

Young Jerzy’s great hero was Saint Maximillian Kolbe, another Polish priest who gave his life to save another prisoner – a man with a family – at Auschwitz.   He determined early on to become a priest but kept it a secret so that the authorities could not alter his examination results or pressure the family to keep him out of the seminary.

In 1966, his entire seminary class was drafted into the special indoctrination unit in violation of a church-state agreement.   This cruel treatment was reserved for the most outspoken church leaders, including the future St Pope John Paul II.

The horrible treatment he received in this “special unit” broke his health but not his spirit.   He wrote to his father “It turned out to be very tough but I can’t be broken by threats or torture.”   His seminary professors demanded that he take a period of rest but he refused.   “One doesn’t suffer when one suffers for Christ,” was his reply.

St Pope John Paul said, on his apostolic journey to Poland in 1999:

“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 5:10).

“Our century too has written a great martyrology.   I myself, in the course of the twenty years of my papacy, have raised to the glory of the altars many groups of martyrs: Japonese, French, Vietnamese, Spanish, Mexican.   And how many martyrs there were during the time of the Second World War and under Communist totalitarianism!   They suffered and gave their lives in the death camps of Hitler or those of the Soviets.   In a few days, in Warsaw, I will beatify 108 martyrs who gave their lives for the faith in the concentration camps.   Now is the time to remember all these victims and to grant them the honour which is their due.   These are “the martyrs, many of them nameless, ‘unknown soldiers’ as it were of God’s great cause”, as I wrote in the Apostolic Letter Tertio Millennio Adveniente (No. 37).   And it is good that we speak of them in Poland, since this country had a special role in this contemporary martyrology.   It is good that we speak of them in Bydgoszcz!   All gave testimony of fidelity to Christ in spite of sufferings which horrify us by their cruelty.   Their blood was poured out on our land and made it fertile for growth and for the harvest.   That same blood continues to bring forth fruit a hundredfold for our nation, which perseveres faithfully alongside Christ and the Gospel.   Let us persevere unceasingly in union with them.   Let us thank God that they emerged victorious from their labours:   “God … tried them like gold in the furnace, and like a sacrificial offering he accepted them” (Wis 3:6).   They represent for us a model to be followed.   From their blood we ought to draw strength for the sacrifice of our own life, which we must offer to God each day.   They are an example for us, so that, like them, we may give a courageous witness of fidelity to the Cross of Christ.

4. “Blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you … on my account” (Mt 5:11).

Christ does not promise an easy life to those who follow Him.   Instead, He proclaims that, by living according to the Gospel, they are to become a sign of contradiction.   If He Himself suffered persecution, so too will His disciples:   “Beware of men”, he says, “for they will deliver you up to councils and flog you in their synagogues” (Mt 10:17).

Dear Brothers and Sisters!   Every Christian, united to Christ through the grace of Holy Baptism, has become a member of the Church and “no longer is his own” (cf. 1 Cor 6:19) but belongs to the one who died and rose for our sake.   From that moment on, the baptised enter into a particular bond of community with Christ and His Church.   They, therefore, have the duty of professing before others the faith they have received from God through the Church.   At times this demands great sacrifice on our part, to be offered each day and sometimes for an entire lifetime.   This firm perseverance alongside Christ and His Gospel, this readiness to face “sufferings for righteousness’ sake”, often involve acts of heroism and can take the form of an authentic martyrdom, carried out every day and at every moment of life, drop by drop, until the final “it is finished”.” – Homily in Bydgoszcz – Monday, 7 June 1999 (Excerpt)

The enemies of Christ rule Poland no more!

Blessed Jerzy, Pray, for us!one doesn't suffer when one suffers for christ bl jerzy pray for us 19 oct 2019.jpg

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on TRUTH, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 19 October – Truth!

Quote/s of the Day – 19 October – The Memorial of Bl Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyr

”To live in Truth
is the basic minimum of human dignity,
even if the price to defend the Truth could be costly.
You need to always remain faithful to the Truth.
Truth can never be betrayed.”to-live-in-truth-bl-jerzy-popieluszko-19-oct-2018 and 2019.jpg

“Truth never changes.
It cannot be destroyed
by any decision or legal act.
Telling the truth with courage,
is a way, leading directly to freedom.
A man who tells the Truth,
is a free man,
despite external slavery, imprisonment or custody.”truth never changes - bl jerzy 19 oct 2019.jpg

“It is not enough for a Christian to condemn evil, cowardice, lies
and use of force, hatred and oppression.
He must at all times be a witness to
and defender of justice, goodness, truth, freedom and love.
He must never tire of claiming these values
as a right both for himself and others.”it is not enough for a christian to dondemn - bl jerzy - 19 oct 2019.jpg

“Truth, like Justice,
is connected to Love
and Love has a Price.”truth-like-justice-bl-jerzy-popieluszko-19-oct-2018 and 2019.jpg

“An idea which needs
rifles to survive,
dies of its own accord.”

Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984) Martyran idea which needs rifles to survive - bl jerzy 19 oct 2019.jpg

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2019, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, The PASSION, The WILL of GOD

Lenten Reflection – 22 March –

Lenten Reflection – 22 March – Friday of the Second week of Lent, Year C

“Therefore, I tell you, the kingdom of God
will be taken away from you
and given to a nation producing the fruits of it.”...Matthew 21:43lent - friday of the second week matthew 21 43 22 march 2019.jpg

Daily Meditation:
Help us open our hearts to you.

We hear of the vineyard owner whose tenants killed his servants and then his son.
Let us open our hearts and lives
to the challenge of Your Gospel.

“Let us serve God but let us do so according to His will.
He will then take the place of everything in our lives.
He will be our strength and the reward of our labours.”

St Vincent de Paul (1581-1660)let us serve god but let us do so according to his will st vincent de paul 22 march 2019.jpg

“The vineyard of the Lord of Hosts is the house of Israel” says the prophet (Is 5:7).   We ourselves are this house… and, since we are His Israel, we are the vineyard.   So let us take good care that grapes of wrath (Rv 14:19) rather than sweetness do not grow from our branches, so that no one may say to us:  “I expected grapes but it yielded wild grapes” (Is 5:4).   What fruitless soil!   The soil that should have presented its master with fruits of sweetness, pierced Him with its sharp thorns.   In the same way His enemies, who ought to have welcomed our Saviour with all the devotion of their faith, crowned Him with the thorns of His Passion.   In their eyes this crown expressed insult and abuse but in the Lord’s eyes it was the crown of virtue…

My brethren, take good care that no one says with regard to you:   “He expected it to yield grapes but it yielded wild grapes” (Is 5:2)…   Let us be careful that our evil deeds do not rub against our Lord’s head like thorns.   There are thorns in the heart that have even wounded the word of God, as our Lord says in the gospel when he relates how the sower’s seed fell among thorns that grew and choked what had been sown (Mt 13:7)…  So take care that your vineyard does not bring forth thorns instead of grapes and your vintage produce vinegar instead of wine.   Anyone who gathers in the grapes, without sharing them with the poor, is collecting vinegar instead of wine and anyone who stores his harvests, without sharing them with the needy, is not setting aside the fruit of almsgiving but the briars of greed.”

Saint Maximus of Turin (c 380-c 420)

Sermon for the feast of Saint Cyprian – CC Sermon 11the soil that should have - st maximus of turin 22 march 2019 2nd fri lent.jpg

Closing Prayer:

Loving God, caring parent,
I am a child who so often turns my back
on Your love.
Please accept my small acts of sorrow today
and help to release me from the self-absorption
that closes my heart to You.
As I journey through Lent,
let me remember the feast You have prepared for me
in the resurrection
and let me be filled with gratitude to You.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.

Posted in CARMELITES, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2019, MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, The WORD

Lenten Reflection – 16 March

Lenten Reflection – 16 March – Saturday of the First week of Lent, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 5:43–48

Blessed Titus Brandsma (1881-1942) Martyr

“But I say to you… pray for those who persecute you”

You have often heard it said that we are living through a marvellous time, a time of great men… It is easy to understand why people long for a strong and capable leader to arise… This kind of neo-paganism [Nazism] believes all nature to be an emanation of the divine…; it admires a race that is nobler and purer than any other… From this comes the cult of race and blood, the cult of its own people’s heroes.

By starting out from so mistaken an idea, this view of things can lead to capital errors.   It is tragic to see how much enthusiasm, how many efforts are placed at the service of such an erroneous and baseless ideal!   However, we can learn from our enemy.   We can learn from his deceitful philosophy how to purify and improve our own ideal, we can learn how to develop great love for this ideal, how to arouse immense enthusiasm and even a readiness to live and die for it, how to strengthen our hearts to incarnate it in ourselves and in others…

When we talk about the coming of the Kingdom and pray for its coming, we are not thinking of a discrimination according to race or blood but of the brotherhood of all, for all men are our brothers – not excluding even those who hate and attack us – in a close bond with the One, who causes the sun to rise on the good and the bad alike (Mt 5:45).all men are our brothers - bl titus brandsma 1st sat lent 16 march 2019.jpg

Daily Meditation:
Turn our hearts to You.

The Saturdays of Lent have a grateful and uplifting tone to them.
Our lesson today reminds us of the covenant God made long ago:
you be My people
and I will be your God.

In the new covenant, without condition,
God is faithful to us, even if we are not.
Jesus calls us to a new way of being –
loving others as we have been loved –
which includes loving those who do not love us.
We are to be as pure in our love,
as God is pure in loving us.

You, therefore, must be perfect,
as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Matthew 5:48saturday of the first week of lent - 16 march 2019.jpg

Closing Prayer:

Loving God,
Sometimes my heart
turns in every direction
except towards You.
Please help me
to turn my heart toward You,
to gaze upon You in trust
and to seek Your kingdom with all of my heart.
Soften my hardened heart
so that I might love others
as a way to glorify and worship You.
Grant me this
with the ever-present guidance of Your spirit.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.

Christ’s martyrs feared neither death nor pain.   He triumphed in them who lived in them;  and they, who lived not for themselves but for Him, found in death itself the way to life.”

St Augustine – (354-430) – Father & Doctor of the Churchchrists-martyrs-st-augustine-14-march-20181.jpg

Posted in MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 29 December – St Thomas a Becket (1118-1170) Martyr

Quote/s of the Day – 29 December – St Thomas a Becket (1118-1170) Martyr, Archbishop of Canterbury

I have fought the good fight,
I have finished the course,
I have kept the faith.
From now on a merited crown awaits me

2 Timothy 4:72-timothy-4-7-29-dec-2017-thomas-a-becket

“Remember then how our fathers worked out their salvation;
remember the sufferings through which the Church has grown
and the storms the ship of Peter has weathered
because it has Christ on board.
Remember how the crown was attained,
by those whose sufferings gave new radiance to their faith.
The whole company of saints bears witness to the unfailing truth,
that without real effort no-one wins the crown.”remember-then-how-our-fathers-st-thomas-a-becket-29-dec-2017

“I am ready to die for my Lord,
that in my blood,
the Church may obtain liberty and peace.”i am ready to die for my lord - st thomas a becket 29 dec 2018

“Better are the blows of a friend,
than the false kisses of an enemy.”better are the blows of a friend - st thomas a becket 29 dec 2018

“Who shall resist Anti-Christ when he comes
if we show such patience
towards the vices and crimes of his precursors?
By such leniency, we encourage kings
to become tyrants
and tempt them to withdraw every privilege
and all jurisdiction from the Churches.”who shall resist anti-christ - st thomas a becket 29 dec 2018

It is dangerous for men in power,
if no-one dares to tell them, when they go wrong.” 
 (St Thomas to a friend on his ordination)

St Thomas a Becket (1118-1170) Martyrit-is-dangerous-st-thomas-a-becket-29-dec-2017

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL HOMILIES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 13 September – Today’s Gospel – Luke 6:27–38

One Minute Reflection – 13 September – Today’s Gospel – Luke 6:27–38 – Thursday of the Twenty-third week in Ordinary Time, Year B and the Memorial of St John Chrysostom (347-407) Father & Doctor of the Church

“Judge not and you will not be judged;  condemn not and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven;  give, and it will be given to you;  good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap.   For the measure you give, will be the measure you get back.”...Luke 6:37-38judge not and you will not be judged - luke 6 37-38 - 13 sept 2018

REFLECTION – “O envious one, you injure yourself more than he whom you would injure and the sword with which you wound will recoil and wound yourself.   What harm did Cain do to   Abel? Contrary to his intention he did him the greatest good, for he caused him to pass to a better and a blessed life and he himself was plunged into an abyss of woe.   In what did Esau injure Jacob?   Did not his envy prevent him from being enriched in the place in which he lived and, losing the inheritance and the blessing of his father, did he not die a miserable death?   What harm did the brothers of Joseph do to Joseph, whose envy went so far as to wish to shed his blood?   Were they not driven to the last extremity and well-nigh perishing with hunger, whilst their brother reigned all through Egypt?   It is ever thus;  the more you envy your brother, the greater good you confer upon him.   God, who sees all, takes the cause of the innocent in hand and, irritated by the injury you inflict, deigns to raise up him whom you wish to lower and will punish you to the full extent of your crime.   If God usually punishes those who rejoice at the misfortunes of their enemies, how much more will He punish those who, excited by envy, seek to do an injury to those who have never injured them?”…Saint John Chrysostomit is ever thus the more you envy your brother - st john chrysostom - 13 sept 2018

“It will do us good today to think of an enemy – I think we all have someone who has hurt us or who wants to hurt us or who tries to hurt us.   Ah, this!   The mafia prayer is:   “You will pay for it”, the Christian prayer is:   “Lord, bless him and teach me to love him”…Pope Francis – Santa Marta, 19 June 2018it will do us good today - pope francis 13 sept 2018

PRAYER – Lord God, strength of those who hope in You, by Your will, St John Chrysostom became renowned in the Church, for his astounding eloquence and his forbearance in persecution.   Grant that we may be enriched by his teaching and thus grow in sanctity, to follow the commandments You set forth in Your Word, Your Son who is our Saviour and Redeemer.   By the prayers of St John Chrysostom, may we attain the place You have prepared for us.   We make our prayer through Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit, one God, forever amen.st john chrysostom pray for us - 13 sept 2018

Posted in QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CHASTITY, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on HUMAN DIGNITY, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 16 August – The Memorial of St Stephen of Hungary (c 975- 1038)

Quote/s of the Day – 16 August – The Memorial of St Stephen of Hungary (c 975- 1038)

“Be HUMBLE in this life,
that God may raise you up in the next.
Be truly MODERATE
and do not punish or condemn anyone immoderately.
Be GENTLE,
so that you may never oppose justice.
Be HONOURABLE,
so that you may never voluntarily
bring disgrace upon anyone.
Be CHASTE,
so that you may avoid all the foulness of lust
like the pangs of death.”be humble in this life - st stephen of hungary - 16 aug 2018

“Be merciful to all
who are suffering violence,
keeping always in your heart
the example of the Lord
who said,
‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’”

St Stephen of Hungary (c 975- 1038)be merciful to all - st stephen of hungary - 16 aug 2018

Posted in IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 31 July – The Memorial of St Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556)

Thought for the Day – 31 July – The Memorial of St Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556)

Ignatius was a true mystic.   He centered his spiritual life on the essential foundations of Christianity—the Trinity, Christ, the Eucharist.   His spirituality is expressed in the Jesuit motto, Ad majorem Dei gloriam—“for the greater glory of God.”   In his concept, obedience was to be the prominent virtue, to assure the effectiveness and mobility of his men.   All activity was to be guided by a true love of the Church and unconditional obedience to the Holy Father, for which reason all professed members took a fourth vow to go wherever the pope should send them for the salvation of souls.

Luther nailed his theses to the church door at Wittenberg in 1517.   Seventeen years later, Ignatius of Loyola founded the Society that was to play so prominent a part in the Catholic Reformation.   He was an implacable foe of Protestantism.   Yet the seeds of ecumenism may be found in his words:  “Great care must be taken to show forth orthodox truth in such a way that if any heretics happen to be present they may have an example of charity and Christian moderation.   No hard words should be used nor any sort of contempt for their errors be shown.”  ( Fr Don Miller, OFM)

St Ignatius pray for us!st-ignatius-pray-for-us-31 july 2017 LOVE

Posted in CATHOLIC DEVOTIONS of the Month, CONSECRATION Prayers, MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN QUOTES, MORNING Prayers, PAPAL HOMILIES, PAPAL PRAYERS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, QUOTES on TRUTH, QUOTES on VIOLENCE, St Pope JOHN PAUL, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The HOLY CROSS, VATICAN Resources

Quote/s of the Day – and Marian too – 29 May “Mary’s Month!” – The Memorial of Blessed Joseph Gerard O.M.I. (1831-1914)

Quote/s of the Day – and Marian too – 29 May “Mary’s Month!” – The Memorial of Blessed Joseph Gerard O.M.I. (1831-1914)

“Always believe, in the power of love and truth,
the love of neighbour, which is rooted in the love of God
and the truth, which sets people free.”

“Reject violence as a solution to any situation,
no matter how unjust it may be.”

“Above all, trust in the God of justice,
who created all things,
who sees all human events,
who holds in His hands,
the destiny of every person and of every nation.”always believe in the power of love - above all trust in the god of justice - reject violence - st pope john paul - 29 may 2018

“Let the eyes of our faith
never wander
from the Cross of Calvary.”let the eyes of our faith - st pope john paul - 29 may 2018- no 2

“May each of you, discover Mary, as your Mother.”

“May each of you, seek to be a son, a daughter, of Mary,
who at the foot of the Cross,
becomes in a particular way for us,
the “Mother of Divine Grace”.”

May each of you, “make a place for her in your home”
and even more so in your heart,
every day and throughout your life,
especially at those times, of trial and suffering.”may each of you (on mary) - st pope john paul - 29 may 2018

Maseru Race Course (Lesotho)
Thursday, 15 September 1988

St Pope John Paul II (1920-2005)

Taken from the Beatification Homily of St Pope John Paul II
(See today’s thought for the Day)