Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FRANCISCAN, Pope BENEDICT XVI, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 15 July – ‘Meditation on Christ in His humanity …’

Thought for the Day – 15 July – Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 10:34-11,1 and The Memorial of St Bonaventure OFM (1221-1274) Seraphic Doctor of the Church

Saint Bonaventure saw the spires of the great cathedrals reaching up to heaven as a reflection of the human soul’s reaching up to God in his The Soul’s Journey into God. Likewise, the streams of light coming into the church through the stained-glass windows, reflect God expressing Himself, in the wide variety of creatures upon whom He showers His gifts of grace.

And the images go on and on as the saint reaches into human experience of creation and cultural artifacts and finds vestigium (the footprints) of God since everything in creation, reflects in some way, the grandeur of God.   Human beings, of course, are the actual image of God.

It was this ability to take the spirituality of Saint Francis—as reflected in Saint Francis’ Canticle of the Sun, for instance—and place it at the heart of his writings, keeping the simplicity of the Franciscan insights and creating a sublime theology, that truly deserves the name “Seraphic.”

When Bonaventure was declared a Doctor of the Universal Church in 1588 by Pope Sixtus V, he was given the title “Seraphic Doctor.”   Merriam-Webster defines a seraph as one of the highest-ranking angels as well as “one of the six-winged angels standing in the presence of God.”   It was as a seraph that Christ appeared to Saint Francis when he received the stigmata on Mount La Verna.   Therefore, it is fitting to use the term to describe the soaring mysticism of Saint Bonaventure.

In his General Audience on 3 March 2010, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about the life of St Bonaventure.   He called to mind the great works of literature, art, philosophy and theology that were inspired by the Christian faith during the time period in which the saint lived.

“Among the great Christian figures who contributed to the composition of this harmony between faith and culture, Bonaventure stands out, a man of action and contemplation, of profound piety and prudent government,” Pope Benedict said.

The Pope called on the faithful to take note of “the central role that Christ always played in Bonaventure’s life and teaching,” and to imitate the way in which “the whole of his thinking was profoundly Christocentric.”

“Meditation on Christ in His humanity is corporeal in deed, in fact but spiritual in mind. . . . By adopting this habit, you will steady your mind, be trained to virtues and receive strength of soul….Let meditation of Christ’s life be your one and only aim, your rest, your food, your desire, your study.” – St Bonaventure

St Bonaventure, Pray for us!let meditationof christ's life - st bonaventure pray for us 15 july 2019.jpg

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FRANCISCAN, FRUITS of the SPIRIT, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HAPPINESS, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 15 July – The wisdom of St Bonaventure

Quote/s of the Day – 15 July – Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 10:34-11,1 and The Memorial of St Bonaventure (1221-1274) Doctor of the Church

“Every creature
is a divine word
because it
proclaims God.”every-creature-st-bonaventure-15-july-2018.jpg

“In all your deeds and words,
you should look upon this Jesus, as your model.
Do so, whether you are walking
or keeping silence,
or speaking,
whether you are alone or with others.
He is perfect
and thus, you will be,
not only irreprehensible
but praiseworthy.”in all your deeds and words - st bonaventure 15 july 2019.jpg

“Christ has something in common with all creatures.
With the stone He shares existence,
with the plants He shares life,
with the animals He shares sensation
and with the angels He shares intelligence.
Thus all things are transformed in Christ
since in the fullness of His nature,
He embraces some part of every creature.”christ-has-something-in-common-st-bonaventure-15-july-2018.jpg

“We must beg the Holy Spirit,
with ardent longing, to give us these fruits.
The Holy Spirit alone,
knows how to bring to light,
the sweetness hidden away
under the rugged exterior of the words of the Law.
We must go to the Holy Spirit for interior guidance.”we-must-beg-the-holy-spirit-st-bonaventure-15-july-2018.jpg

“Since happiness is nothing else
than the enjoyment of the Supreme Good
and the Supreme Good is above us,
no-one can enjoy happiness,
unless he rises above himself.”since happiness is nothing else - st bonaventure 15 july 2019.jpg

“God might have created a more beautiful world,
He might have made heaven more glorious
but it was impossible for Him, to exalt a creature,
higher than Mary, in making her His Mother.”

St Bonaventure (1221-1274) Doctor of the Churchgod might have created a more beautiful world - st bonaventure 15 july 2019.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on MARRIAGE, MARRIED LOVE, QUOTES on the FAMILY, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 15 July -‘… but not more than you love your God!’

One Minute Reflection – 15 July – Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 10:34-11:1 and The Memorial of St Bonaventure (1221-1274) Doctor of the Church and Bl Anne-Marie Javouhey (1779-1851)

“Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me…” … Matthew 10:37

REFLECTION – “It is to those who are on fire with love or, rather, those He wants to set on fire with this love, that our Saviour addresses these words.   For our Saviour has not done away with but regulated, the love we owe to parents, spouse, children.   He did not say:  “Those who love them” but “Those who love them more than me”…   Love your father but love the Lord even more,  love him who brought you into the world but love yet more he who gave you being.   It was your father who brought you into the world but it was not he who created you, since he did not know, when he bred you, who you would be or what you would become.   It was your father who fed you but he is not the origin of the food that staunched your hunger.   Finally, your father must die if you are to inherit his goods but you will share the inheritance God intends for you, while living with him eternally.

So love your father but not more than you love your God, love your mother but love still more the Church who has begotten you into eternal life…   Indeed, if you owe such gratitude to those who begot you for mortality, what kind of love do you owe to those who begot you for eternity?   Love your spouse, love your children as God does, to lead them to serve God together with you and then, when you are reunited, you will not be afraid of being separated.   Your love for your family would indeed fall short if you did not lead them to God…

Take up your cross and follow the Lord.   Your Saviour Himself, wholly God as He was in the flesh, clothed with your flesh, He, too, showed human feelings when He said – “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me,” (Mt 26:39)…   The servant’s nature with which He clothed Himself for your sake caused His human voice, the voice of His flesh, to be heard.   He took your voice so as to express your weakness and give you His strength… and to show you, whose will to prefer.”… St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor of the Church – Sermon 344, #2-3matthew 10 37 whoever lovs father or mother - so love your father but not more - st augustine 15 july 2019.jpg

PRAYER – God our Father, we are Your children and You have set us aside to come home to You by the light of the way of Your divine Son.   Grant we pray, that we may grow in faith and love daily, by the intercession of Saint Bonaventure and Blessed Anne-Marie Javouhey (1779-1851) and may be a light of love, to all around us, as they were.   We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.st bonaventure pray for us 15 july 2019

bl anne-marie javouhey pray for us 15 july 2019

Posted in 7 GIFTS of the HOLY SPIRIT, DOCTORS of the Church, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY

Our Morning Offering – 15 July – Prayer for the Gifts of the Holy Spirit

Our Morning Offering – 15 July – Monday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C

Prayer for the Gifts
of the Holy Spirit
By St Bonaventure (1221-1274) – Seraphic Doctor of the Church

We beg the all-merciful Father through You,
His only-begotten Son made man for our sake,
crucified and glorified for us,
to send upon us, from His treasure-house,
the Spirit of sevenfold grace,
Who rested upon You in all His fullness.

The spirit of wisdom,
enabling us to relish the fruit of the tree of life,
which is indeed Yourself.
The gift of understanding:
to enlighten our perceptions.
The gift of prudence,
enabling us to follow in Your footsteps.
The gift of strength:
to withstand our adversary’s onslaught.
The gift of knowledge,
to distinguish good from evil
by the light of Your holy teaching.
The gift of piety,
to clothe ourselves with charity and mercy.
The gift of fear,
to withdraw from all ill-doing
and live quietly in awe
of Your eternal majesty.

These are the things for which we petition.
Grant them for the honour of Your Holy Name,
to which, with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
be all honour and glory, thanksgiving, renown
and Lordship forever and ever.
Amenprayer for the seven gifts of the holy spirit by st bonaventure - 30 oct 2018 mem of st angelo of acri.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SUNDAY REFLECTIONS, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Sunday Reflection – 14 July – The Sacrament that You Receive is Effected by the Words of Christ

Sunday Reflection – 14 July – Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C, Luke 10:25–37

The Sacrament that you Receive is Effected by the Words of Christ

Saint Ambrose (340-397)
Bishop and Great Latin Father & Doctor of the Church

An Excerpt from his Work, ‘On the Mysteries’

We see that grace can accomplish more than nature, yet so far, we have been considering instances, of what grace can do through a prophet’s blessing.   If the blessing of a human being had powe,r even to change nature, what do we say of God’s action in the consecration itself, in which the very words of the Lord and Saviour are effective?   If the words of Elijah had power even to bring down fire from heaven, will not the words of Christ have power to change the natures of the elements?   You have read that in the creation of the whole world He spoke and they came to be;  He commanded and they were created.   If Christ could by speaking, create out of nothing what did not yet exist, can we say that His words are unable to change existing things, into something they previously were not?   It is no lesser feat to create new natures for things than to change their existing natures.

What need is there for argumentation?   Let us take what happened in the case of Christ Himself and construct the truth of this mystery, from the mystery of the incarnation.  Did the birth of the Lord Jesus from Mary come about in the course of nature?   If we look at nature we regularly find, that conception results from the union of man and women.   It is clear then, that the conception by the Virgin was above and beyond the course of nature.   And this body that we make present, is the body born of the Virgin.   Why do you expect to find, in this case, that nature takes its ordinary course, in regard to the body of Christ, when the Lord Himself was born of the Virgin, in a manner above and beyond the order of nature?   This is indeed the true flesh of Christ, which was crucified and buried.   This is then in truth the Sacrament of His Flesh.

The Lord Jesus Himself declares – ‘This is my body.’   Before the blessing contained in these words, a different thing is named; after the consecration, a body is indicated.   He Himself speaks of His blood.   Before the consecration, something else is spoken of, after the consecration, blood is designated.   And you say – “Amen,” that is: “It is true.”   What the mouth utters, let the mind within acknowledge, what the Word says, let the heart ratify.

So the Church, in response to grace so great, exhorts her children, exhorts her neighbours, to hasten to these mysteries –  neighbours, she says, come and eat, brethren, drink and be filled.   In another passage the Holy Spirit has made clear to you what you are to eat, what you are to drink.   Taste, the prophet says and see, that the Lord is good, blessed is the man who puts his trust in Him.

Christ is in that sacrament, for it is the body of Christ.   It is, therefore, not bodily food but spiritual.   Thus the Apostle too says, speaking of its symbol – Our fathers ate spiritual food and drank spiritual drink.   For the body of God is spiritual; the body of Christ is that of a divine spirit, for Christ is a spirit.   We read – The spirit before our face is Christ the Lord.   And in the letter of Saint Peter we have this – Christ died for you.   Finally, it is this food that gives strength to our hearts, this drink which gives joy to the heart of man, as the prophet has written.and you say amen that is it is true - st ambrose sun reflec - 14 july 2019.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DIVINE PROVIDENCE, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 13 July – ‘Even the hairs of your head…’

Quote/s of the Day – 13 July – Saturday of the Fourteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 10:24–33

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?
And not one of them will fall to the ground, 
without your Father’s will.
But even the hairs of your head, 
are all numbered.”

Matthew 10:29-30are not two sparrows sold for a penny matthew 10 29 -20 13 july 2019.jpg

“Do not say,
this happened by chance,
while this came to be of itself.”
In all that exists’
there is nothing disorderly,
nothing indefinite,
nothing without purpose,
nothing by chance …
How many hairs are on your head?
God will not forget one of them.
Do you see how nothing,
even the smallest thing,
escapes the gaze of God?”

Saint Basil the Great (329-379)
Father & Doctor of the Churchdo not say this happened by chance st basil the great 13 july 2019 no 2.jpg

“We must offer ourselves to God,
like a clean, smooth canvas 
and not worry ourselves,
about what God 
may choose to paint on it
but at each moment, 
feel only the stroke of His brush.”

Father Jean-Pierre de Caussade SJ (1675-1751)we-must-offer-ourselves-to-god-fr-jean-pierre-de-caussade-13-july-2018.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on COURAGE, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 13 July – ‘I will acknowledge before my Father…’

One Minute Reflection – 13 July – Saturday of the Fourteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 10:24–33 and the Memorial of Blessed Carlos Rodriguez Santiago

“So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father, who is in heaven…”… Matthew 10:32matthew 10 32 - so everyone who acknowledges me 13 july 2019.jpg

REFLECTION – “You can be a witness to Christ every day.   You were tempted by the spirit of impurity but… you considered that chastity of spirit and body should not be soiled – you are a martyr or, in other words, a witness to Christ… You were tempted by the spirit of pride but, seeing the poor and needy, you were seized by tender compassion and preferred humility to arrogance –  you are a witness to Christ.   Better still – you have not given your witness in word alone but in deed as well.
What is the surest kind of witness?   “Anyone who acknowledges that Jesus Christ came among us in the flesh” (cf. 1Jn 4,2) and who keeps the commands of the Gospel…   How many there are each day of these hidden martyrs of Christ who confess the Lord Jesus!    The apostle Paul knew that kind of martyrdom and witness of faith rendered to Christ, he who said:  “Our boast is this, the testimony of our conscience” (2Cor 1,12).   For how many people have made a confession of faith exteriorly but denied it interiorly!…  So be faithful and courageous in interior persecutions so that you may also win the victory in exterior persecutions.   There are “kings and rulers,” judges of formidable power, in the persecutions within, likewise.   You have an example of these in the temptations undergone by our Lord (Mt 4,1ff.)”… St Ambrose (340-397) Father & Doctor of the Church -Sermon 20 on Psalm 118what is the surest kind of witness - st ambrose - 13 july 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Come to help us in our weakness, God of mercy, forgive the sins of Your people and as nothing we can do is worthy in Your sight, save us through the intercession of the Mother of our Lord, Jesus Christ.   Listen too to the prayers of a fellow pilgrim Blessed Carlos, who has, by his love for You and passion to proclaim Christ Your Son, reached his eternal destination with You.   We make our prayer through Jesus with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.bl-mother-of-our-lord-pray-for-us-27-oct-2018

bl carlos santiago pray for us 13 july 2019