Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, FATHERS of the Church, HOLY WEEK 2019, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on TRUTH, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The HEART, The WORD

Spy Wednesday in Holy Week – 13 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – We do the same thing as Judas …

Spy Wednesday in Holy Week – 13 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Isaias 53:1-12, Luke 22:39-71; 23:1-53

And turn not away thy face from thy servant, for I am in trouble, hear me speedily. Save me, O God, for the waters are come in, even unto my soul.” – Psalm 68:2

And Jesus said to him:
Judas, dost thou betray
the Son of man with a kiss?

Luke 22:48

LET US CONSIDER what Judas said to the Jewish priests: “What will you give me if I hand him over to you?” He was willing to take money in exchange for handing over the Word of God!

THEY DO THE SAME THING, who accept sensual or worldly goods, in exchange for handing over and casting out from their souls, the Saviour and Word of Truth, Who came to dwell with them. Indeed, it would be fitting to apply Judas’ example to all who show contempt for the Word of God and betray Him, as it were, by committing sin for the sake of money, or for any selfish motive.
People who behave in this way, appear openly to be calling out to the powers of the enemy, who offer worldly gain in return for the sin of betraying God’s Word, saying: “What will you give me if I hand Him over to you!?
And they gave him thirty pieces of silver
.”

THE NUMBER OF COINS they gave Judas, was equivalent, to the number of years the Saviour had sojourned in this world. For at the age of thirty, He was Baptised and began to preach the gospel, like Joseph was thirty years old when he began to gather grain for his brothers. Just as at that time the grain was prepared by God for the sons of Israel but given also to the Egyptians, so also, the gospel was prepared for the saints but preached also to the unfaithful and wicked.” – Origen Adamantius (c 185-253) Priest, Theologian, Exegist, Writer, Apologist, Father (Commentary on Matthew 78)

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, HOLY WEEK, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on PATIENCE, Quotes on SALVATION, The PASSION, The WORD

Tuesday of Holy Week – 12 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘… If we put Him on, if He is the Way of our salvation …’

Tuesday of Holy Week – 12 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Jeremias 11:18-20, Mark 14:32-72; 15, 1-46

“May God have mercy on us and bless us; may He cause the Light of His Countenance to shine upon us and may He have mercy on us.” – Psalm 66:2

“And some began to spit on Him
and to cover His face
and to buffet Him
and to say unto Him: Prophesy;
and the servants struck Him
with the palms of their hands.

Mark 14:65

“HE RECREIVED the spittings of insulters, who with His spittle had a little before made eyes for a blind man.
And He in Whose Name the devil and his angels is now scourged by His servants, Himself suffered scourgings!
He was crowned with thorns, Who crowns Martyrs with eternal flowers.
He was smitten on the Face with palms, Who gives the true palms to those who overcome.
He was despoiled of His earthly garment, Who clothes others in the vesture of immortality.
He was fed with gall, Who gave heavenly food.
He was given to drink of vinegar, Who appointed the cup of salvation.
That guiltless, that just One—nay, He who is Innocency itself and Justice itself—is counted among transgressors and Truth is oppressed with false witnesses.

HE, WHO SHALL JUDGE, is judged and the Word of God is led silently to the slaughter.
And when, at the Cross, of the Lord the stars are confounded, the elements are disturbed, the earth quakes, night shuts out the day, the sun… He speaks not, nor is moved, nor declares His Majesty even in His very Passion itself.
Even to the end, all things are borne perseveringly and constantly, in order that in Christ, a full and perfect patience may be consummated.

AND AFTER ALL THESE THINGS, He still receives His murderers, if they will be converted and come to Him.
And with a saving patience, He who is benignant to preserve, closes His Church to none.
Those adversaries…, if they repent of their sin, if they acknowledge the crime committed, He receives, not only to the pardon of their sin but to the reward of the Heavenly Kingdom.

WHAT CAN BE SAID, more Patient, what more Merciful? Even he is made alive by Christ’s Blood, who has shed Christ’s Blood!
Such and so great is the Patience of Christ and had it not been such and so great, the Church would never have possessed Paul as an Apostle.

BUT IF WE ALSO, beloved brethren, are in Christ.
If we put Him on, if He is the Way of our salvation, who follow Christ in the footsteps of salvation, let us walk by the example of Christ, as the Apostle John instructs us, saying, He who says, he abides in Christ, ought himself also, to walk even as He walked.

Peter also, upon whom by the Lord’s condescension the Church was founded, lays it down in his epistle and says:

CHRIST SUFFERED FOR US, leaving you an example, that ye should follow His Steps, Who did no sin, neither was deceit found in His Mouth; Who, when He was reviled, reviled not again; when He suffered, threatened not but gave Himself up to him that judged Him unjustly.” – St Cyprian of Carthage (200-258) Bishop of Carthage and Martyr, Father of the Church (On Patience, 7-9).

Posted in AUGUSTINIANS OSA, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on the CHURCH, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The PASSION, The WORD

Monday of Holy Week – 11 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Judas

Monday of Holy Week – 11 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Isaias 50:5-10, John 12:1-9

“Help us, O God, our saviour and for the glory of thy name, O Lord, deliver us and forgive us our sins, for Thy name’s sake” – Psalm 78:9

He (Judas Iscariot) said this,
not because he cared about the poor
but because, he was a thief
and held the money bag
and used to steal the contributions.

John 12:6

LOOK NOW AND LEARN that this Judas did not become perverted, only at the time when he yielded to the bribery of the Jews and betrayed his Lord. For not a few, inattentive to the Gospel, suppose, that Judas only perished, when he accepted money from the Jews, to betray the Lord. It was not then that he perished but he was already a thief and a reprobate, when following the Lord;,for it was with his body and not with his heart, that he followed. He made up the apostolic number of twelve but had no part in the apostolic blessedness. He had been made the twelfth in semblance and on his departure and the succession of another, the apostolic reality was completed and the entirety of the number conserved.

WHAT LESSON THEN, my brethren, did our Lord Jesus Christ wish to impress on His Church, when it pleased Him, to have one castaway among the twelve – but this – that we should bear with the wicked and refrain from dividing the body of Christ? Here you have Judas among the saints,- that Judas, mark you! who was a thief, yes – do not overlook it – not a thief of any ordinary type but a thief and a sacrilegis – a robber of money bags,but of such as were the Lord’s; of money bags but of such as were sacred! . … How much more severe ought to be, the sentence on the sacrilegious thief, who has dared to steal, not from places of any ordinary kind but, to steal from the Church!?

HE WHO THIEVES from the Church, stands side by side with the castaway Judas. Such was this man Judas and yet, he went in and out with the eleven holy disciples. With them, he came even to the table of the Lord, he was permitted to have intercourse with them but he could not contaminate them.

OF ONE BREAD did both Peter and Judas partake and yet, what communion had the believer with the infidel? Peter’s partaking was unto life but that of Judas unto death. For that good bread was just like the sweet savour. For as the sweet savour, so also does the good bread give life to the good and bring death to the wicked. “For he that eateth unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgement to himself:” – “judgment to himself,” not to thee. If, then, it is judgement to himself, not to thee, bear as one that is good, with him that is evil, that you may attain the rewards of the good,and be not hurled into the punishment of the wicked.” – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, Great Western Father and Doctor of the Church (On John 12:1-9 Monday of Holy Week).

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, HOLY WEEK, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, MORNING Prayers, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The PASSION

Our Morning Offering – 11 April – Dearest Lord Jesus Christ

Our Morning Offering – 11 April – Monday of Holy Week

Dearest Lord Jesus Christ
The Old Roman Missal

Dearest Lord Jesus Christ,
I entreat Thee
to let me find in Thy Passion,
a strong defence, protection and safegiard.
Let Thy Wounds be my food and drink,
to nourish and make me drunk with delight.
Let the shedding of Thy Blood
wash all my offenses away,
Thy Death, bring me,
the life that knows no ending,
Thy Cross be my everlasting glory.
In them, let my heart find renewal,
gladness, health and delight,
Thou Who lives and reigns,
forever and ever.
Amen.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION, The WORD

Palm Sunday – 10 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – The Power of the Cross

Palm Sunday – 10 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Philippians 2:5-11, The Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew 26:36-75; 27:1-60

My God, my God, look upon me, why have You forsaken me?” – Psalm 21:2

“Behold the hour is at hand
and the Son of man shall be betrayed
into the hands of sinners.

Matthew 26:45

OUR UNDERSTANDING, which is enlightened by the Spirit of Truth, should receive with purity and freedom of heart the glory of the Cross, as it shines in Heaven and on earth. It should see with inner vision. the meaning of the Lord’s Words when He spoke of the imminence of His passion – The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Afterward He said – Now my soul is troubled and what am I to say? Father, save Me from this hour. But it was for this that I came to this hour. Father, glorify Your Son. When the voice of the Father came from Heaven, saying, I have glorified him, and will glorify Him again, Jesus said in reply to those around Him – It was not for Me that this Voice spoke but for you. Now is the judgement of the world, now will the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I Am lifted up from the earth, will draw all things to Myself.

HOW MARVELLOUS the Power of the Cross, how great beyond all telling, the glory of the Passion – here is the Judgement-Seat of the Lord, the condemnation of the world, the supremacy of Christ Crucified. LORD, You drew all things to Yourself so that the devotion of all peoples, everywhere, might celebrate, in a Sacrament made perfect and visible, what was carried out in the one temple of Judea, under obscure foreshadowings. …

DEARLY BELOVED, let us then acknowledge what Saint Paul, the teacher of the nations, acknowledged so exultantly: This is a saying worthy of trust, worthy of complete acceptance – Christ Jesus came into this world to save sinners. God’s compassion for us is all the more wonderful because Christ died, not for the righteous, or the holy but for the wicked and the sinful and, although the Divine Nature could not be touched by the sting of death, He took to Himself, through His birth as one of us, something He could offer on our behalf.

THE POWER OF HIS DEATH, once confronted our death. In the words of Hosea, the prophet: Death, I shall be your death; grave, I shall swallow you up. By dying He submitted to the laws of the underworld; by rising again, He destroyed them. He did away with the everlasting character of death, so as to make death a thing of time, not of eternity. As all die in Adam, so all will be brought to life in Christ.” – St Leo the Great (400-461) Great Father and Doctor of the Church (Excerpt from his “On the Lord’s Passion” Sermon 8).

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on FREE WILL, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on THE WORLD, The KINGDOM of GOD, The LORD'S PRAYER, The WILL of GOD

Saturday in Passion Week – 9 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘… What is the point …?’

Saturday in Passion Week – 9 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Jeremias 18:18-23, John 12:10-36

In You, O Lord, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. In Your justice rescue me.Psalm 30:2”

He who loves his life, loses it
and he who hates his life
in this world,
keeps it unto life everlasting.
If anyone serves Me,
let him follow Me
and where I am,
there also shall My servant be
.”

John 12:25-26

OUR OBLIGATION is to do God’s will and not our own. We must remember this, if the praye that our Lord commanded us to say daily, is to have any meaning on our lips. How unreasonable it is to pray that God’s will be done and then not promptly obey it, when He calls us from this world!
Instead, we struggle and resist like self-willed slaves and are brought into the Lord’s presence, with sorrow and lamentation, not freely consenting to our departure but constrained by necessity.

AND YET, WE EXPECT to be rewarded with heavenly honours by Him to Whom we come, against our will!
Why then do we pray for the Kingdom of Heaven to come, if this earthly bondage pleases us?

WHAT IS THE POINT of praying so often for its early arrival, if we would rather serve the devil here than reign with Christ!?” – St Cyprian of Carthage (200-258) Bishop of Carthage, Martyr, Great Father of the Church (Excerpt from On Man’s Mortality).

Posted in "Follow Me", ASPIRATIONS and EJACULATIONS, CHRIST the JUDGE, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on MERCY, The LAST THINGS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 9 April – “He who loves his life, loses it and he who hates his life in this world, keeps it unto life everlasting.” – John 12:25

One Minute Reflection – 9 April – Saturday in Passion Week, the Fifth Week in Lent – Jeremias 18:18-23, John 12:10-36

He who loves his life, loses it and he who hates his life in this world, keeps it unto life everlasting. If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me and where I Am ,there also shall My servant be.” – John 12:25-26

REFLECTION – “… We are being towed along by a world that passes away, forgetting the world to come. We are greedy for present things but do not take into account the coming judgement. We will not run to meet the Lord as He comes…

Let us turn back, brethren, let us turn back… By the very fact of His delay, of His still waiting, our Lord proves His desire to see us come back to Him, His desire that we should not perish. In His great goodness, He continues addressing these words to us: “I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked but would rather he would change his ways and live ”(Ez 33,11). So let us turn back to Him, brethren, not fearing that time is running short. The time that belongs to time’s Author cannot be shortened. The proof of it lies in the criminal in the Gospel, who, at the moment of dying on the cross, got away with his pardon, grabbed hold of life and, breaking into paradise like a burglar, managed to make his way into the Kingdom (cf. Lk 23,43)!” – St Peter Chrysologus (c 400-450) Bishop of Ravenna, Father and “Doctor of Sermons” of the Church (Excerpt from Sermon 167).

PRAYER – O Lord, may the people dedicated to You, desire to serve You more and more, that, taught by these sacred rites, they may be enriched by more precious gifts, as they grow in favour with Your majesty. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end.
Amen (Collect).

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on SIN, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION, The WORD

Friday of Passion Week – 8 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – “THE DARKENING OF ONE makes many bright… “

Friday of Passion Week – 8 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Jeremiah 17:13-18, John 11:47-54

O Lord, deal with us not according to our sins, nor requite us according to our crimes.”Psalm 102:10

… It is expedient for us,
that one man die for the people,
instead of the whole nation perishing
.”

John 11:50

“THE DARKENING OF ONE makes many bright… “It is better,” said Caiaphas, “for one man to die for the people, than for the whole nation to be destroyed.” It is better that One be darkened “in the likeness of sinful flesh,” (Rm 8:3) for the sake of all, than for the whole of mankind to be lost by the darkness of sin; that the splendour and image of the substance of God, should be shrouded in the form of a Slave, in order that a slave might live; that the brightness of eternal Light should become dimmed in the flesh, for the purifying of the flesh; that He, Who surpasses all mankind in beauty (Ps 44:2), should be eclipsed by the darkness of the Passion, for the enlightening of mankind; that He should suffer the ignominy of the Cross, grow pale in death, be totally deprived of beauty and comeliness, that He might gain the Church as a beautiful and comely Bride, without spot or wrinkle (Ep 5:27).

BUT UNDER HIS DARK COVERING (Sg 1:5), I recognise the King… I recognise Him and I embrace Him. For, although He presents this dark exterior… within, is the brightness of Divine life, the beauty of His strength, the splendour of grace, the purity of innocence. But covering it all, is the abject hue of infirmity, His Face, as it were, hidden and despised – “one tempted in every respect, as we are, yet without sinning” (Heb 4:15).

I RECOGNISE HERE ,the image of our sin-darkened nature; I recognise the garments that clothed our first parents after their sin (Gen 3:21). My God has clothed Himself in them by assuming the condition of a Slave and becoming, as men are, He was seen in their likeness (Phil 2:7). Under the skin that Jacob wore (Gen 27:16), symbol of sin, I recognise, both the Hand that committed no sin and the Neck which never bowed to evil; no word of treachery was found in His Mouth. I know, Lord, that You are gentle by nature, meek and humble of heart, pleasing in appearance and lovable in Your ways, “anointed with the oil of gladness above Your companions” (Mt 11:29; Ps 44:8). Why then this disfigured likeness to Esau? Whose haggard image this?… Ah! It is mine! He has taken my likeness, taken on my sin… And beneath the rough skin of my sinfulness, I recognise my God and my Saviour.!” – St Bernard (1091-1153) Cistercian Monk, Great Father and Doctor of the Church (28th Homily on the Song of Songs).

Posted in HYMNS, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, PAPAL PRAYERS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FASTING

Our Morning Offering – 8 April – The Glory of These Forty Days

Our Morning Offering – 8 April – Friday of Passion Week, the Fifth Week in Lent

The Glory of These Forty Days
By St Gregory the Great (540-604)
Pope, Great Father & Doctor of the Church

The glory of these forty days
we celebrate with songs of praise,
for Christ, by Whom all things were made,
Himself has fasted and has prayed.
Alone and fasting Moses saw
the loving God Who gave the law.
And to Elijah, fasting, came
the steed and chariots of flame.
So Daniel trained his mystic sight,
delivered from the lion’s might.
And John, the Saviour’s friend, became
the herald of Messiah’s Name.
Then grant, O God, that we may, too,
return in fast and prayer to You.
Our spirits strengthen with Your Grace,
and give us joy to see Your Face.
Amen!

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOOD FRIDAY, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, The WORD

Wednesday of Passion Week – 6 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘The mark of Christ’s sheep …’

Wednesday of Passion Week, the Fifth Week of Lent – 6 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Leviticus 19:1-2, 11-19, 25, John 10:22-38

O Lord, deal with us not according to our sins, nor requite us according to our crimes.” – Psalm 102:10

“My sheep hear My Voice;
I know them and they follow Me.”

John 10:27

THE MARK OF CHRIST’S SHEEP is their willingness to hear and obey, just as the sign of those who are not His, is their disobedience. We take the word “Hear” to imply obedience to what has been said. People who hear God are known by Him. No-one is entirely unknown by God but to be known in this way, is to become His Kin. Thus, when Christ says, “I know mine,” He means, “I will receive them and give them permanent Mystical Kinship with Myself.” It might be said, that inasmuch as He has become man, He has made all human beings His Kin, since all are members of the same race; we are all united to Christ in a Mystical relationship because of His Incarnation. Yet, those who do not preserve the likeness of His holiness are alienated from Him… .

MY SHEEP FOLLOW ME, says Christ. By a certain God-given grace, believers follow in the footsteps of Christ. No longer subject to the shadows of the Law, they obey the commands of Christ and, guided by His Words rise, through grace, to His own dignity, for they are called children of God. When Christ ascends into Heaven, they also follow Him.” – St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Bishop, Father & Doctor of the Church (Commentary on Saint John’s Gospel, 7, 10, 26).

Posted in LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FASTING

Our Morning Offering – 5 April – A Lenten Prayer

Our Morning Offering – 5 April – Tuesday in Passion Week

A Lenten Prayer
By St Pope Pius V (1504-1572)

Look with favour, Lord,
on Your household.
Grant that,
though our flesh be humbled,
by abstinence from food,
our souls, hungering after You,
may be resplendent in Your sight.
Amen

St Pius V is the Pope of the Council of Trent, the Counter Reformation, the excommunication of Elizabeth I for Heresy and persecution of English Catholics and of the Battle of Lepanto, amongst many other illustrious and holy achievements.

Posted in CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, The WORD

Passion Sunday – 3 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – What does “Christ” mean but to die in the body and receive the Breath of Life?

Passion Sunday – 3 April – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Hebrews 9:11-15, John 8:46-59.

Rescue me from my enemies, O Lord; teach me to do Your will.” – Psalm 142:9-10

Amen, amen, I say to you,
if anyone keep My word,
he will never see death
.”

John 8:51

WE SEE THAT DEATH is gain, life is loss. Paul says: For me life is Christ and death a gain. What does “Christ” mean but to die in the body and receive the Breath of Life? Let us then die with Christ, to live with Christ. We should have a daily familiarity with death, a daily desire for death. By this kind of detachment our soul must learn to free itself from the desires of the body. It must soar above earthly lusts to a place where they cannot come near, to hold it fast. It must take on the likeness of death, to avoid the punishment of death. The law of our fallen nature is at war with the law of our reason and subjects the law of reason, to the law of error. What is the remedy? Who will set me free from this body of death? The grace of God, through Jesus Christ, our Lord.

WE HAVE A DOCTOR to heal us; let us use the remedy He prescribes. The remedy is the grace of Christ, the dead body, our own. Let us then be exiles from our body, so as not to be exiles from Christ. Although we are still in the body, let us not give ourselves to the things of the body. We must not reject the natural rights of the body but, we must desire, before all else, the gifts of grace.

WHAT MORE need be said? It was by the death of One Man that the world was Redeemed. Christ did not need to die, if He did not wish to but He did not look on death as something to be despised, something to be avoided and He could have found no better means to save us, than by dying. Thus His Death is Life for all. We are sealed with the Sign of His Death – when we pray, we preach His Death, when we offer Sacrifice we proclaim His Death. His Death is Victory; His Death is a Sacred Sign; each year His Death is celebrated with solemnity by the whole world.” – St Ambrose (340-397) Bishop of Milan, Great Father and Doctor of the Church (An excerpt from his work, On the death of Satyrus [Saint Ambrose’s brother])

Posted in LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS for SEASONS, PRAYERS of the CHURCH

Our Morning Offering – 3 April – O God, Creator of Us All, Deus, Creator Omnium

Our Morning Offering – 3 April – Passion Sunday

O God, Creator of Us All,
Deus, Creator Omnium
Stanbrook Abbey

O God, Creator of us all,
From Whom we come, to Whom we go,
You look with pity on our hearts,
The weakness of our wills You know.

Forgive us all the wrong we do
And purify each sinful soul.
What we have darkened, heal with light
And what we have destroyed, make whole.

The fast by law and prophets taught,
By You, O Christ, was sanctified.
Bless all our penance, give us strength,
To share the Cross on which You died.

O God of mercy, hear our prayer,
With Christ Your Son and Spirit blest,
Transcendent Trinity in Whom,
Created things all come to rest.
Amen

Posted in CATHOLIC TIME, CHRIST the KING, GOD ALONE!, GOD is LOVE, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The PASSION

Our Morning Offering – 1 April – My God, I Love Thee

Our Morning Offering – 1 April – Friday of the Fourth Week of Lent

My God, I Love Thee
By St Francis Xavier (1506-1552) (Attri)
Transr: Fr Edward Caswall CO (1814-1878)

My God, I love Thee, not because
I hope for heav’n thereby,
nor yet for fear, that loving not,
I might forever die
but for that Thou didst all mankind
upon the Cross embrace;
for us didst bear the nails and spear
and manifold disgrace.

And griefs and torments numberless
and sweat of agony;
e’en death itself and all for man,
who was Thine enemy.
Then why, most loving Jesus Christ,
should I not love Thee well?
Not for the sake of winning heav’n,
nor any fear of hell.

Not with the hope of gaining aught,
nor seeking a reward
but as Thyself hast loved me,
O ever loving Lord!
E’en so I love Thee and will love
and in Thy praise will sing,
solely because Thou art my God
and my eternal King!
Amen

Posted in CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the CHURCH, The WORD

Thursday of the Fourth week in Lent – 31 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘And what is this tomb?’

Thursday of the Fourth week in Lent – 31 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – 4 Kings 4:25-38, Luke 7,11-16.

Give thanks to the Lord, invoke His Name; make known among the nations His deeds.”Psalm 104:1

And he said, “Young man, I say to you, arise.”

Luke 7:14

EVEN IF the signs of death have removed all hope of life, even if the bodies of the dead lie beside the tomb, yet, at the Voice of God, the corpses of those ready to decompose, will rise and recover speech. The son is restored to his mother, he is called back from the tomb, snatched out of it.

AND WHAT IS THIS TOMB? Your own! Your bad habits, your lack of faith. This is the tomb from which Christ delivers you, this is the tomb from which you will return to life if you listen to the Word of God. Even if your sin is so grave, that you are unable to wash it clean for yourself, with your tears of repentance, the Church, your mother, she who intercedes for each one of her children, like a widowed mother for her only son, will weep for you. For she feels for it with a kind of spiritual suffering natural to her, when she sees her offspring, dragged down to death, by lamentable vices…

LET HER WEEP, then, this pious mother; let the crowd accompany her – and not just a crowd but a large crowd – and may it show compassion towards this tender mother. Then you will come to life again in your tomb and will be delivered, the bearers will stop and you will start to speak the words of the living; everyone will be astonished. The example of one will correct the many and they will praise God for having granted such remedies to us for escaping death.”…St Ambrose (c 340-397) Great Father & Doctor of the Church (A treatise on the Gospel of Saint Luke)

Posted in "Follow Me", AUGUSTINIANS OSA, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on TRUTH, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The WORD

Wednesday of the Fourth Week of Lent – 30 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘… Let us do what He commands, so that we may not blush to covet what He promises… ‘

Wednesday of the Fourth Week of Lent – 30 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Isaias 1:16-19, John 9:1-38

Wash yourselves, be clean, take away the evil of your devices from My eyes, cease to do perversely, Learn to do well: seek judgement, relieve the oppressed, judge for the fatherless, defend the widow.” – Isaias 1:16-17

“And Jesus passing by, saw a man
who was blind from his birth. …
As long as I am in the world,
I am the Light of the world.
When He had said these things,
He spat on the ground
and made clay of the spittle
and spread the clay upon his eyes,

John 9:1,5-6

“THE LORD TELLS USI am the Light of the world; he who follows Me, will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life.
In these few words He gives a COMMAND and makes a PROMISE.
Let us do what He commands, so that we may not blush to covet what He promises and to hear Him say on the day of judgement: “I laid down certain conditions for obtaining My promises. Have you fulfilled them?

If you say: “What did you command, Lord our God?” He will tell you: “I commanded you to follow Me. You asked for advice on how to enter into life. What life, if not the life about which it is written: With you is the fountain of life?

LET US DO NOW what He commands.
Let us follow in the footsteps of the Lord.
Let us throw off the chains that prevent us from following Him.
Who can throw off these shackles without the aid of the One addressed in these words: You have broken my chains? Another psalm says of Him: The Lord frees those in chains, the Lord raises up the downcast.

THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN FREED and raised up follow the Light.
The Light they follow speaks to them: I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me, will not walk in darkness.
The Lord gives Light to the blind.
Brethren, that Light shines on us now, for we have had our eyes anointed with the eye-salve of faith.
His saliva was mixed with earth to anoint the man born blind.
We are of Adam’s stock, blind from our birth; we need Him to give us Light.
He mixed saliva with earth and so it was prophesied: Truth has sprung up from the earth.

He Himself has said: I am the Way, the Truth and the Life.

IF YOU LOVE ME, follow Me. “I do love you,” you protest “but how do I follow you?
If the Lord your God said to you: “I am the truth and the life,” in your desire for truth, in your love for life, you would certainly ask Him to show you the way to reach them.
You would say to yourself: “Truth is a great reality, life is a great reality – if only it were possible for my soul to find them!” – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop, Great Western Father and Doctor of the Church (An excerpt from: On John [Treatise 34]).

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning Offering – 30 March – O Lord and Master of My Life

Our Morning Offering – 30 March – Wednesday of the Fourth Week of Lent

O Lord and Master of My Life
By St Ephrem (306-373)
Father & Doctor of the Church

O Lord and Master of my life,
give me not a spirit of sloth, vain curiosity,
lust for power and idle talk.
But give to me, Thy servant,
a spirit of soberness, humility, patience and love.
O Lord and King,
grant me to see my own faults
and not to condemn my brother.
For blessed art Thou to the ages of ages.
Amen

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, QUOTES on DOUBT, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, The HOLY SPIRIT, The WORD

Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Lent – 29 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘ … Will He not save you too, since you have believed? …’

Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Lent – 29 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Exodus 32:7-14, John 7:14-31

Arise, O Lord, help us! Redeem us for Your Name’s sake.” – Psalm 43:26

But of the people, many believed in him …

John 7:31

THE ONE WORD “FAITH” can have two meanings. One kind of faith concerns doctrines. It involves the soul’s ascent to and acceptance of some particular matter. It also concerns the soul’s good, according to the words of the Lord: Whoever hears my voice and believes in him who sent me has eternal life and will not come to be judged. And again: He who believes in the Son is not condemned but has passed from death to life.

HOW GREAT is God’s love for men! Some good men have been found pleasing to God because of years of work. What they achieved by working, for many hours at a task pleasing to God, is freely given to you by Jesus in one short hour. For if you believe that Jesus Christ is Lord and that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved and taken up to paradise by Him, just as He brought the thief there. Do not doubt that this is possible. After all, He saved the thief on the holy hill of Golgotha because of one hour’s faith; will He not save you too, since you have believed?

THE OTHER KIND OF FAITH is given by Christ by means of a special grace. To one wise sayings are given through the Spirit, to another perceptive comments by the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing. Now this kind of faith, given by the Spirit as a special favour, is not confined to doctrinal matters, for it produces effects beyond any human capability. If a man ,who has this faith, says to this mountain, move from here to there, it will move. For when anybody says thi,s in faith, believing it will happen and having no doubt in his heart, he then receives that grace.

IT IS THIS KIND OF FAITH, moreover, of which it is said – ‘If you have faith like a grain of mustard seed.’ The mustard seed is small in size but it holds an explosive force; although it is sown in a small hole, it produces great branches and when it is grown, birds can nest therein In the same way, faith produces great effects in the soul instantaneously. Enlightened by faith, the soul pictures God and sees Him as clearly as any soul can. It circles the earth; even before the end of this world, it sees the judgement and the conferring of promised rewards.

SO MAY YOU HAVE THE FAITH which depends on you and is directed to God, that you may receive from Him, that faith too, which transcends man’s capacity.” – St Cyril of Jerusalem (315-387) – Bishop, Confessor, Great Father and Doctor of the Church (An excerpt from his Catecheses 5).

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, QUOTES on FAITH, The WORD

Monday of the Fourth Week of Lent – 28 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘ … Thus it is the Lord Who builds the house, it is the Lord Jesus Who builds His own dwelling. …’

Monday of the Fourth Week of Lent – 28 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – 3 Kings 3:16-28, John 2:13-25

Be my rock of refuge, O God, a stronghold to give me safety.” – Psalm 30:3

Destroy this temple
and in three days
I will raise it up.

John 2:19

“THE TEMPLE that Solomon built to the Lord was a type and figure of the future Church, as well as, of the Body of the Lord. For this reason Christ says in the Gospel: Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up again. For just as Solomon built the ancient temple, so the true Solomon, the true Peacemaker, Our Lord Jesus Christ, built a temple for Himself. Now Solomon means peacemaker; Jesus, however, is the true Peacemaker, of Whom Saint Paul says: He is our peace, uniting the two into one. The true Peacemaker brought together, in Himself, two walls coming from different angles and Himself became the cornerstone. One wall was formed of the circumcised believers and the other of the uncircumcised gentiles who had faith. And of these two peoples, He made one Church, with Himself as the cornerstone and, therefore, the true Peacemaker.

AND SO, WHEN SOLOMON the King of Israel, the son of David and Bathsheba, built his temple, he acted as a figure of Christ, the true Solomon and Peacemaker. But I do not think it was Solomon of old, the type of Christ, who really built God’s dwelling. As the beginning of the psalm tells us: Unless the Lord build the house, in vain have the builders laboured on it. Thus it is the Lord Who builds the house, it is the Lord Jesus Who builds His own dwelling. Many may toil on its building,but unless He builds it, in vain have the builders laboured on it.

AND WHO ARE THOSE who labour on it? ll those who preach God’s word in the Church, who are ministers of His Sacraments . All of us now rush, work and build and before us, other men rushed, worked and built; still, unless the Lord build the house, in vain have the builders laboured on it. The Apostles and Paul specifically, saw some of them fail and said: You observe the days, the years, the months and the seasons; I fear that I may have toiled for you to no purpose. For realising that he was the result of the Lord’s building from within, he was sorrowful because he had toiled for them to no avail. Hence, we are the ones who speak from without but He builds from within. We notice the fact that you are listening but He alone knows what you are thinking, for He sees our thoughts. He is the One Who builds, admonishes, instills fear, opens the mind and bends the perceptions to the act of belief. Yet we too, His ministers, labour and are, as it were, His Workmen.” – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop and Great Western Father and Doctor of the Church (An excerpt from a Discourse on the Psalms).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The WORD

Fourth Sunday of Lent “Laetare Sunday” – 27 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘… Unless you hold out your hands to receive your portion, you will collapse along the way…’

Fourth Sunday of Lent “Laetare Sunday” – 27 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Galatians 4:22-31, John 6:1-15

Mountains are round about Jerusalem; so the Lord is round about His people, both now and forever.” – Psalm 124:2

When, therefore, Jesus had lifted up His eyes
and seen, that a very great crowd
had come to Him, He said to Philip,
“Whence shall we buy bread
that these may eat?

John 6:5

LORD JESUS how well I know You have no wish to allow these people here with me, to remain hungry but to feed them with the food You distribute and so, strengthened with Your food, they will have no fear of collapsing from hunger. I know, too, that You have no wish to send us away hungry, either… As you have said: You do not want them to collapse on the way, meaning, to collapse in the byways of this life, before reaching the end of the road, before coming to the Father and, understanding that You come from the Father…

OUR LORD TAKES PITY, then, so that none may collapse along the way… Just as He makes it rain on the just, as well as the unjust (Mt 5,45), so He feeds the just, as well as the unjust. Was it not thanks to the strength of the food, that the holy prophet Elijah, when he was collapsing on the way, was able to walk for forty days? (1Kgs 19,8). It was an Angel who gave that food to him but, in your case, it is Christ Himself Who feeds you. If you preserve the food you have received in this way, then you will walk, not forty days and forty nights… but for forty years, from your departure from the borders of Egypt, to your arrival in the land of plenty, the land where milk and honey flow (Ex 3,8)…

AND SO CHRIST shares out the foodstuffs and, there is no question, He wants to give it to all. He withholds it from no-one, for He provides for everyone. Nevertheless, when He breaks the loaves and gives them to the disciples, unless you hold out your hands to receive your portion, you will collapse along the way… This bread that Jesus breaks, is the Mystery of the Word of God: it increases as it is distributed. With only a few words Jesus has provided abundant nourishment for all peoples. He has given us His Words as bread and, while we are tasting them, they increase in our mouths… Even as the crowds are eating, the pieces increase and become more numerous, to such an extent, that, in the end, the leftovers are even more plentiful than the loaves that were shared.” – St Ambrose (c 340-397) Bishop of Milan, Great Father and Doctor of the Church (Commentary on the Gospel of Saint Luke, VI, 73-88).

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, QUOTES on BAD CONVERSATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN

Saturday of the Third Week of Lent – 26 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘… He reformed the criminal, He did not absolve the sin. …’ St Ambrose

Saturday of the Third Week of Lent – 26 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers –Daniel 13:1-9, 15-17, 19-30, 33-62, John 8:1-11

“Even though I walk in the dark valley, I fear no evil; for You are at my side, O Lord. With Your rod and Your staff that give me courage.” – Psalm 22:4

Woman, where are they?
Has no man condemned you?
She said, No man Lord.
Then Jesus said,
Neither shall I condemn you.
Go and from now on, sin no more
.”

John 8:9-11

SEE, O READER, these Divine Mysteries and the mercy of Christ. When the woman is accused, Christ stoops His head but when the accusers retire, He lifts it up again, thus we see, that He would have no man condemned but all absolved.

BY THE WORDS, ‘Has no man condemned you?‘ He quickly overthrows all the quibbles of heretics, who say that Christ knows not the day of judgment.
He Who says, ‘But to sit on My right hand and on My left is not Mine to give.’ says also in this place, ‘Has no man condemned you?
How is it that He asks concerning that, which He indeed saw? It is for our sakes that He asks, that we might know the woman was not condemned. And such is the way of the human mind, often to enquire, concerning that which we know.

THE WOMAN TOO answered, ‘No man, Lord‘, which is to say, ‘Who can condemn when Thou dost not condemn?‘ Who can punish another under such a condition as Thou hast attached to his sentence?
The Lord answered her, ‘Neither do I judge thee!‘ Observe how He has modified His own sentence; that the Jews might have no ground of allegation against Him for the absolution of the woman but by complaining only, draw down a charge upon themselves – for the woman is dismissed not absolved and this because there was no accuser, not because her innocence was established. How then could they complain, who were the first to abandon the prosecution of the crime and the execution of the punishment?

THEN HE SAID TO HER who had gone astray, ‘Go, and sin no more’ He reformed the criminal, He did not absolve the sin. Faults are condemned by a severer sentence, whenever a man hates his own sin and begins the condemnation of it in himself.
When the criminal is put to death, it is the person, rather than the transgression, which is punished but when the transgression is forsaken, the absolution of the person becomes the punishment of the sin.

WHAT IS THE MEANING then of, ‘Go and sin no more?’ It is this; Since Christ has redeemed you, suffer yourself to be corrected by Grace; punishment would not reform but only afflict you!St Ambrose (340-397) One of the original four Fathers and Doctors of the Latin Church (Excerpt from Epistle 26 on the Woman taken in adultery).

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Our Morning Offering – 26 March – My Sorrowful Mother,Help Me to Bear My Crosses By St Alphonsus

Our Morning Offering – 26 March – Saturday of the Third Week of Lent

My Sorrowful Mother,
Help Me to Bear My Crosses
By St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787)
Doctor of the Church

My sorrowful Mother,
by the merit of that grief
which you felt
at seeing your beloved Jesus
led to death,
obtain for me the grace
to bear with patience,
those crosses which God sends me.
I will be fortunate
if I also shall know how
to accompany you
with my cross until death.
You and Jesus,
both innocent,
have borne a heavy cross
and shall I,
a sinner who has merited hell,
refuse mine?
Immaculate Virgin,
I hope you will help me
to bear my crosses with patience.
Amen

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The ANNUNCIATION, The INCARNATION, The WORD

Friday of the Third Week of Lent – 25 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘ … By Obeying His Word …’

Friday of the Third Week of Lent – 25 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – The Annunciation – Isaias 7:10-15, Luke 1:26-38

“Hail, Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.” – Luke 1:28,42

“And Mary said,
‘Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord.
May it be to me according to your word.
’”

Luke 1:38

SO THE LORD NOW manifestly came to His own. Born by His own created order that He Himself bears, He by His obedience on the tree, renewed and reversed what was done by disobedience, in connection with a tree.

THE POWER of that seduction, by which the virgin Eve, already betrothed to a man, had been wickedly seduced, was broken when the Angel in truth brought good tidings to the Virgin Mary, who already, by her betrothal belonged to a man. For as Eve was seduced by the word of an Angel to flee from God, having rebelled against His Word, so Mary by the word of an Angel, received the glad tidings that she would bear God, by obeying His Word.

THE FORMER WAS SEDUCED to disobey God and so fell but the latter, was persuaded to obey God, so that the Virgin Mary might become the advocate of Eve.

AS THE HUMAN RACE was subjected to death through the act of a virgin, so was it saved by a virgin, was precisely balanced by the obedience of Another. Then indeed, the sin of the first formed man was amended by the chastisement of the First Begotten, the wisdom of the serpent was conquered by the simplicity of the dove and the chains were broken, by which we were in bondage to death.” – St Irenaeus (130-202) Bishop of Lyons, Martyr, Father of the Church (Against Heresies, 5)

Posted in CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, The WORD

Thursday of the Third Week of Lent – 24 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘… The sicknesses of the soul …’

Thursday of the Third Week of Lent – 24 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Jeremias 7:1-7, Luke 4:38-44

“The eyes of all look hopefully to You, O Lord,and You give them their food in due season. You open Your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing.” – Psalm 144:15-16

Now when the sun was setting, all those who had any who were sick with various diseases brought them to him and he laid his hands on everyone of them and healed them. And demons also came out of many, crying, “You are the Son of God!” But he rebuked them and would not allow them to speak because they knew that he was the Christ.”

Luke 4:40-41

BUT OBSERVE AGAIN, I pray, how great is the efficacy of the touch of His holy flesh. For It both drives away diseases, of various kinds and a crowd of demons and overthrows the power of the devil and heals a very great multitude of people, in one moment of time.
And although able to perform these miracles by a word and the inclination of His will, yet, to teach us something useful, He also lays His hands upon the sick.
For it was necessary, most necessary, for us to learn, that the holy flesh which He had made His own, was endowed with the activity of the power of the Word, by His having implanted in it, a godlike might.
Let It then take hold of us, or rather let us take hold of It, by the mystical “Giving of thanks,” that It may free us also from the sicknesses of the soul and from the assault and violence of demons.

HE WOULD NOT PERMIT the unclean demons to confess Him, for it was not fitting for them to usurp the glory of the Apostolic office, nor with impure tongue, to talk of the mystery of Christ.
Yea! although they speak ought that is true, let no-one put credence in them – for the light is not known by the aid of darkness, as the disciple of Christ teaches us, where he says, “For what communion hath light with darkness? or what consent hath Christ with Beliar?” – St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Father and Doctor of the Incarnation

Posted in DIVINE MERCY, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on CHASTITY, QUOTES on ENVY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GOOD WORKS, QUOTES on KINDNESS, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MERCY, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The HEART

Wednesday day of the Third Week of Lent – 23 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘… With our whole heart and our whole mind.’

Wednesday day of the Third Week of Lent – 23 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Exodus 20:12-24, Matthew 15:1-20

Have pity on me, O Lord, for I am languishing; heal me, O Lord.” – Psalm 6:3

“… This people honours me
with their lips but their heart
is far from Me
… ”

Matthew 15:7

GREAT IS THE MERCY that Jesus Christ has shown us. The first benefit that we owe to His mercy, is that we, who are living, do not sacrifice to dead gods or worship them but have, through Christ, attained a knowledge of the Father. What else is knowledge of the Father but the recognition of His Son, through Whom this knowledge comes to us? He Himself declares: – Everyone who acknowledges Me, I in My turn will acknowledge in the presence of the Father. This then will be our reward if we acknowledge Him through Whom we have been saved. But how shall we show that we acknowledge Him? By doing what He says, by not disobeying His commands and by honouring Him. not only with our lips but with our whole heart and our whole mind. For He says in Isaiahs This people pays me lip service but its heart is far from me.

LET US NOT ONLY CALL HIM LORD, for that will not save us. Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, will be saved, He warns but only the man who does what is right. So then, brothers, let us show our faith in Him by our deeds, by loving one another, by not committing adultery, by not finding fault with one another, or being envious. Instead, let us be chaste, merciful and kind. We should also have compassion for one another and, not be covetous. We have to prove that we believe in Him by performing such actions as these and by avoiding whatever is contrary to them, since we fear God rather than men. Should we fail to do so, we have the Lord’s warning:- If you do not keep my commandments, even though I had pressed you to my heart, I will thrust you away from me and say to you: Out of my sight, you whose deeds are evil; you are complete strangers to me.

THEREFORE, MY BROTHERS, let us enter the lists in the knowledge that the contest is imminent. Many men travel far to contend for a crown that soon fades, yet not all of them win but only those who have strained every nerve and competed fairly. Let us so contend, that we may all be crowned. Let us run a straight course in the race of the Christian life, setting out in great numbers to take part in it and then striving for the crown with all our might. Even if we are not all able to win, at least let us draw near to victory.

NOW, WE MUST SURELY KNOW, that even when the contest is for a wreath that lasts but a day, if anyone is found to be breaking the rules, he is flogged and driven off the racecourse. What do you suppose, then, will be the fate of the man who breaks the rules in the contest of the Christian life? Of those who have not kept the seal of their Baptism unbroken, Scripture says: The worm does not die and the fire is never extinguished. They will be a spectacle to all men.” – Anonymous Ancient Christian Writer – ACW (An excerpt from a Second Century Homily).

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on ANGER, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS

‘Tuesday of the Third Week of Lent – 22 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘The one who is healthy must go to the one who is sick.’

Tuesday of the Third Week of Lent – 22 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – 4 Kings 4:1-7, Matthew 18:15-22

Cleanse me from my unknown faults, O Lord! From wanton sin especially, restrain Your servant. Let it not rule over me. Then, shall I be blameless and innocent of serious sin.” – Psalm 18:13-14

If your brother sins against you,
go and show him his fault,
between you and him alone.
If he listens to you,
you have won your brother.

Matthew 18:15

HE DOES NOT SAY, accuse him,” or “punish him,” or “take him to court.” He says “correct him. ” For he is possessed, as it were, by some stupor and drunk in his anger and disgrace. The one who is healthy must go to the one who is sick. You must conduct your judgement of him privately. Make your cure easy to accept. For the words “correct him” mean nothing other, than help him see his indiscretion. Tell him what you have suffered from him.

WHAT THEN IF he does not listen, if he stubbornly flares up? Call to your side someone else or even two others, so that two witnesses may corroborate all that’s said. For the more shameless and boldfaced he is, so much the more must you be earnest toward his cure, not toward satisfying your anger and hurt feelings. For when a physician sees the sickness unyielding, he does not stand aside or take it hard but then is all the more earnest. That then is what Christ orders us to do. You appeared too weak since you were alone, so become stronger with the help of others. Two are sufficient to reprove the wrongdoer.

DO YOU SEE how He seeks the interest, not of the aggrieved party alone but also that, of the one who caused the grief? For the person injured may be the one who is more taken captive by passion. He becomes the one that is diseased and weak and infirm.

THIS EFFORT MAY OCCUR many times, as he attempts to lead him first alone and then with others. If he persists, then make the effort with the whole congregation. “Tell it,” He says, “to the Church.” If He had sought the interest of the aggrieved alone, He would not have told him to approach the sick individual seventy-seven times. He would not have attempted so many times, or brought so many treatments to the malady. He might have just let him be, if he persisted uncorrected from the first meeting. But instead, He shows us how to seek his cure once, twice and many times: first alone, then with two, then with many more.” – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Archbishop of Constantinople, Great Father and Doctor of the Church (The Gospel of Matthew, Homily 60).

Posted in ACT of CONTRITION, DOCTORS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES on REPARATION

Our Morning Offering – 22 March – A Lenten Offering By St Thérèse

Our Morning Offering – 22 March – Tuesday of the Third Week of Lent

A Lenten Offering
By St Thérèse of the Child Jesus
and the Holy Face of Lisieux (1873-1897)
Doctor of the Church

O my God!
I offer Thee all my actions of this Lent
for the intentions and for the glory
of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
I desire to sanctify every beat of my heart,
my every thought,
my simplest works,
by uniting them to Its infinite merits
and I wish to make reparation for my sins,
by casting them into the furnace
of Its Merciful Love.
O my God!
I ask of Thee for myself
and for those whom I hold dear,
the grace to fulfil perfectly Thy Holy Will,
to accept for love of Thee,
the joys and sorrows of this passing life,
so that we may one day
be united together in heaven,
for all eternity.
Amen

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, QUOTES on ALMS, Quotes on SALVATION, The WORD

Monday of the Third Week of Lent – 21 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘ Are we going to neglect our own salvation? … ‘

Monday of the Third Week of Lent – 21 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – 4 Kings, 5:1-15, Luke 4:23-30

“O God, my wanderings You have counted; my tears are recorded in Your sight.” – Psalm 55:9

There were many widows in Israel

Luke 4:25

THE WIDOW OF SAREPTA welcomes the prophet Elijah with every generosity and expends all her poverty in his honour, even though she is a Sidonian foreigner. She had never heard what the prophets have to say about the merits of almsgiving, let alone the words of Christ: “You saw me hungry and gave me food” (Mt 25:35).

WHAT EXCUSE DO WE HAVE if, after such exhortations, after the promise of such great rewards, after the promise of the Kingdom of Heaven and its happiness, we fail to reach the same level of goodness as this widow? A Sidonian woman, a widow, burdened with the care of a family, threatened by famine and seeing the advent of death, opens her door to welcome an unknown man and gives him the scrap of meal she has left …

YET WE, WHO HAVE been taught by the prophets, have heard the teachings of Christ, have the opportunity of meditating on what is to come, who are not threatened by famine and who own a great deal more that this woman, are we to be excused if we dare not lay a finger on our goods to give of them? Are we going to neglect our own salvation? …

SO THEN, LET US SHOW GREAT compassion towards the poor so as to be made worthy of possessing good things to come for all eternity, by the grace and love for humankind of our Lord Jesus Christ.” – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Bishop of Constantinople, Great Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon on Elijah and the widow and almsgiving; PG 51, 348).

Posted in CHRIST the JUDGE, CHRIST the KING, CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the BRIDEGROOM, LENT 2022, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on FREE WILL, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on TRUTH, The HEART, The WORD

The Third Sunday of Lent – 20 March – Our Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – ‘The will is drawn also by love. ‘

The Third Sunday of Lent – 20 March – Ou4 Lenten Journey with the Great Fathers – Ephesians 5:1-9, Luke 11:14-28

“My eyes are ever toward the Lord, for He will free my feet from the snare. Look toward me and have pity on me, for I am alone and afflicted.” – Psalm 24:15-16

He who is not with Me,
is against Me
and he who does not gather
with Me scatters.

Luke 11:23

NO-ONE COMES TO ME unless the Father draws him. Do not think that you are drawn against your will – the will is drawn also by love. We must not be afraid of men who weigh words but are far from understanding what belongs above all to Divine Truth. They may find fault with this passage of Scripture and say to us: “How can I believe of my own free will if I am drawn to believe?” I answer: “It is not enough that you are moved by the will, for you are drawn also by desire.”

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN, to be drawn by desire? Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. The heart has its own desires; it takes delight, for example, in the bread from heaven. The poet could say: “Everyone is drawn by his own desire,” not by necessity but by desire, not by compulsion but by pleasure. We can say then with greater force, that one who finds pleasure in Truth, in Happiness, in Justice, in Everlasting Life, is drawn to Christ, for Christ is all these things.

ARE OUR BOIDLY SENSES to have their desires but not the will? If the will does not have its desires, how can Scripture say: The children of men will find their hope under the shadow of your wings, they will drink their fill from the plenty of your house and you will give them drink from the running stream of your delights, for with you is the fountain of life, and in your light we shall see light.

SHOW ME ONE WHO LOVES; he knows what I mean. Show me one who is full of longing, one who is hungry, one who is a pilgrim and suffering from thirst in the desert of this world, eager for the fountain in the homeland of eternity; show me someone like that and he knows what I mean. But if I speak to someone without feeling, he does not understand what I am saying.

YOU HAVE ONLY to show a leafy branch to a sheep and it is drawn to it. If you show nuts to a boy, he is drawn to them. He runs to them because he is drawn, drawn by love, drawn without any physical compulsion, drawn by a chain attached to his heart. Everyone is drawn by his own desire. ” This is a true saying and earthly delights and pleasures, set before those who love them, succeed in drawing them. If this is so, are we to say that Christ, revealed and set before us by the Father, does not draw us? What does the soul desire more than truth? Why then does the soul have hungry jaws, a spiritual palate as it were, sensitive enough to judge the truth, if not in order to eat and drink Wisdom, Justice, Truth, Eternal Life?

BLESSED ARE THOSE who hunger and thirst for justice, that is, here on earth. They shall be satisfied, that is, in Heaven. Christ says: I give each what he loves, I give each the object of his hope; he will see what he believed in, though without seeing it. What he now hungers for, he will eat; what he now thirsts for, he will drink to the full. When? At the resurrection of the dead, for I will raise him up on the last day.”St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, Great Western Father and Doctor of Grace of the Church (An excerpt from his Treatise 26).

Posted in BLESSED TRINITY PRAYERS, HYMNS, LENT 2022, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, The HOLY TRINITY

Our Morning Offering – 20 March – Thou Hope of All the World and Lord

Our Morning Offering – 20 March – The Third Sunday of Lent

Thou Hope of All the World and Lord
Attri to St Boniface (672-754)
Sarum Rite Breviary
Transl. Fr Alan G McDougall (1895-1964)

Thou Hope of all the world and Lord,
Bestower of the great reward,
Receive the prayers Thou servants raise;
Accept our psalms and hymns of praise.

And though our consciences doth proclaim
Our deep transgressions and our shame,
Cleanse us, O God, we humbly plead,
From sins of thought and word and deed.

Our sins remember Thou no more,
Forgive – Thy mercy can restore;
So, take upon Thee, Lord our care,
That, pure in heart, we make our prayer.

Therefore, accept, O Lord, this tide,
Of fast which Thou have sanctified,
That we, may reach by mystic ways
The Sacraments of Paschal days.

May He, Who is the Threefold Lord,
On us confer this high reward,
In Whom so long as worlds abide,
One Only God, is glorified.
Amen