Posted in ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, The HEART, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 29 January – ‘… With the thought ‘God sees you!’ we would never sin. …’

One Minute Reflection – 29 January – The Memorial of St Francis Salesius, Bishop, Confessor and Doctor of the Church – Romans 13:8-10, Matthew 8:23-27 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was covered by the waves but He was asleep.”- Matthew 8:24

REFLECTION – “Just as the good soldier is not afraid of battle, so the good Christian has no fear of temptation. … The greatest temptation is not to have temptation! It might even be said that we are fortunate to have temptations for these are the times of spiritual harvest when we gather up for Heaven. … If we were thoroughly saturated with God’s Holy Presence, it would be easy for us to resist the enemy. With the thought ‘God sees you!’ we would never sin.

There was a saint who complained to our Lord after being tempted and said to Him: “Where were Thou, my most loveable Jesus, during that awful storm?” Our Lord answered: “I was in the centre of thou heart…” – St John-Marie Baptiste Vianney (1786-1859) The Curé of Ars (Selected thoughts of the Curé d’Ars).

PRAYER – O God, Who for the salvation of souls, willed that blessed Francis, Thy Confessor and Bishop, should become all things to all men, mercifully grant that we, inspired by the sweetness of Thy love, guided by his teachings and aided by his merits, may attain the joys of everlasting life. 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, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SIN, The SECOND COMING, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 27 January – ‘… Why must you be salt? …’

One Minute Reflection – 27 January – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Bishop, Confessor, Father and Doctor of the Church “Golden Mouthed.” – 2 Timothy 4:1-8, Matthew 5:13-19 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

“You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.” – Matthew 5:13

REFLECTION – “It is as a matter of absolute necessity that He commands all this. Why must you be salt? Jesus says in effect: “You are accountable, not only for your own life but also, for that of the entire world. I am sending you not to one or two cities, nor to ten or twenty, nor even to one nation, as I sent the Prophets. Rather, I am sending you to the entire earth, across the seas, to the whole world, to a world fallen into an evil state.” For by saying, “You are the salt of the earth,” Jesus signifies, that all human nature itself has “lost its taste,” having become rotten through sin. For this reason, you see, He requires from His disciples, those character traits that are most necessary and useful for the benefit of all.” – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Archbishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor  (The Gospel of Matthew: Homily,15).

PRAYER – May heavenly grace, we beseech Thee, O Lord, prosper Thy Church, which Thou mercifully enlightened by the blessed virtues and teachings of glorious and blessed John Chrysostom, Thy Confessor and Bishop. 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 AUGUSTINIANS OSA, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, GOD ALONE!, JANUARY month of THE MOST HOLY NAME of JESUS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE WORLD, St PAUL!, The GOOD SHEPHERD, The HEART, The HOLY NAME, The LAMB of GOD, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 25 January – ‘… He had first to be knocked down and afterwards raised up – first struck, then healed. … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 25 January – Feast of the Conversion of St Paul, Apostle – Acts 9:1-22, Matthew 19:27-29 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” – Acts 9:4.

REFLECTION – “From Heaven’s height Christ’s Voice overturned Saul. He received a command to carry out his persecutions no more and fell face downwards to the ground. He had first to be knocked down and afterwards raised up – first struck, then healed. For Christ would never have come to live in him, if Saul had not died to his former life of sin. Cast down to the earth in this way, what was it he heard? “Saul, Saul, why are thou persecuting Me? It is hard for thou to kick against the goad” (Acts 9:4-5). And he replied: “Who are you, Lord?” Then the voice from on high continued: “I am Jesus of Nazareth, Whom thou art persecuting.” The members are still on the ground, while the Head cries out, from the heights of Heaven. He is not saying: “Why art thou persecuting My servants?” but “Why art thou persecuting Me?

And Paul, who had put all his energy into his persecutions, is already preparing to obey: “What do Thou want me to do?” The persecutor is already transformed into the preacher, the wolf has become a sheep, the enemy, a defender. Paul learns what he is to do – if he has become blind, if this world’s light is held back from him for a while, it is so as to make the light within shine in his heart. Light is taken away from the persecutor, so that it may be given to the preacher; at the very moment he no longer saw anything of this world, he saw Jesus. This symbolises the believer – those who believe in Christ, must fix the eyes of their soul on Him, without paying attention to outward things…

So Saul was led to Ananias – the ravaging wolf is led to the sheep. But the Shepherd, Who guides everything from Heaven above, reassures him… “Do not fear, I will show him what he will have to suffer, for My Name’s sake” (Acts 9:16). What wonder is this! The wolf is led, a captive, to the sheep… The Lamb who died for the sheep, teaches it not to be afraid any more!” – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop, Father and Doctor of Grace of the Church (Sermon 279).

PRAYER – O God, Who taught the whole world by the preaching of Thy blessed Apostle Paul, grant, we beseech Thee that we, who today celebrate his conversion, may draw closer to Thee, by way of hia example.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 "Follow Me", CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on WATCHING, The SECOND COMING, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 23 January – ‘ … The Lord desires to have us vigilant, always waiting for the Saviour’s coming… ‘

One Minute Reflection – 23 January – St Raymond of Peñafort (1175-1275) – Sirach 31:8-11, Luke 12:35-40 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

You also must be ready, for at an hour that you think not, the Son of man will come.” – Luke 12:40

REFLECTION – “I have come to set the earth on fire and how I wish it were already blazing”… The Lord desires to have us vigilant, always waiting for the Saviour’s coming… But as the gain is meagre and the merit weak, when fear of pain is what prevents us from straying and as love is what has the greater worth, the Lord Himself…sets on fire our longing to win God, when He says: “I have come to set the earth on fire.” Not the kind of fire that destroys, of course but that which produces an upright will and perfects the golden vessels in the Lord’s House by consuming the chaff and the straw (1 Cor 3:12), by devouring all this world’s veneer, acquired through the taste for earthly pleasures and the perishable works of the flesh.

This was the heavenly fire that burned in the bones of the prophets, as Jeremiah declared: “It becomes, like fire burning…in my bones,” (Jer 20,9). For there is a fire of the Lord of which it is said: “Fire goes before Him,” (Ps 96,3). The Lord Himself is a fire, it says: “which burns without being consumed,” (Ex 3,2). The fire of the Lord is Light Eternal; the lamps of believers are lit at this fire: “Gird your loins and light your lamps,” (Lk 12:35). It is because the days of our life are still night that a lamp is necessary. This is the fire which, according to the testimony of the disciples at Emmaus, the Lord Himself set within them: “Were not our hearts burning within us while He spoke to us on the way and opened the scriptures to us?” (Lk 24:32). He gives us evident proof of this fire’s action, enlightening man’s inmost heart. That is why the Lord will come in fire (Is 66,15) so as to devour our faults at the resurrection, fulfil each one’s desires with His Presence and cast His Light over their merits and mysteries.” – St Ambrose (340-397) Archbishop of Milan, Father and Doctor of the Church (Treatise on St Luke’s Gospel, 7, 131-132).

PRAYER – O God, Thou Who chose blessed Raymond to be a renowned minister of the Sacrament of Penance and miraculously brought him through the waves of the sea, grant that, by his intercession, we may produce good results from our penance and reach the Heaven of eternal salvation .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 AUGUSTINIANS OSA, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, I BELIEVE!, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HUMILITY, The HEART, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 22 January – “Lord, I am not worthy … ”- Matthew 8:8

One Minute Reflection – 22 January – St Vincent of Saragossa (Died 304) Protomartyr of Spain and St Anastasius the Persian (Died 628) Martyr – The Third Sunday after the Epiphany – Romans 12:16-21, Matthew 8:1-13 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Lord, I am not worthy … ”- Matthew 8:8

REFLECTION – “When the Gospel was read, we heard Jesus praise our faith in an act of humility. When the Lord Jesus, you remember, promised He would go to the centurion’s house to heal his servant, the man replied, “I am not worthy that Thou should enter under my roof but only say the word, and he will be healed”. By calling himself unworthy, he showed he was worthy to have Christ enter, not within his walls but within his heart…

There would, after all, have been no great benefit if the Lord Jesus had entered within his walls and had not been in his bosom. Christ, the teacher of humility, by both word and example, had, you may remember, sat down in the house of a certain proud Pharisee called Simon (Lk 7:36). And although He was sitting in his house, there wasn’t anywhere in his heart, where the Son of man might lay His Head (Lk 9,58)… But into this centurion’s house, He did not enter, yet, he took possession of his heart…

So this man’s faith is discerned and praised in an act of humility. He said, “I am not worthy that Thou should enter under my roof” and the Lord said, “Amen I tell you, I have not found such great faith in Israel”… The Lord had come to Israel according to the flesh, that is, to the Jews, there first to seek the sheep that were lost (Lk 15:4)… We, as human beings, can assess the faith of human beings – from the outside; He, Who could look inside, Whom no-one could deceive, bore witness to the faith of this man and on hearing his humble words, He gave him a clean bill of health!” St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon 62).

PRAYER – Give heed to our humble prayers, O Lord, that we who know we are guilty of our own sin, may be saved by the intercession of Thy blessed Martyrs Vincent and Anastasius.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, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES on CHASTITY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on WATCHING, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The LAST THINGS, The SECOND COMING

One Minute Reflection – 21 January – ‘… Be on the watch. …’

One Minute Reflection – 21 January – “The Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” – St Agnes (c 291- c 304) Virgin and Martyr – Ecclesiasticus 51:1-8, 12, Matthew 25:1-13 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Watch, therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.” – Matthew 25:13

REFLECTION – “To prevent His disciples from questioning Him about the time of His Coming, Christ said, ‘Of that hour no-one knows, neither the Angels nor the Son. It is not for you to know the times or moments.’ (Mt 24:36; Apoc 1:7). He hid the time from us, so that we would be on the watch and so, that each of us might think that the Coming will happen in His own lifetime…

Be on the watch. When the body sleeps, nature gets the better of us. Then, our actions do not come from our will but by force, from the impulse of nature. When the soul is overcome by a heavy sleep of timidity or sadness, the enemy takes control of it and works through it what it does not want to do… The Lord’s command about vigilance, holds good for both parts of man. The body must avoid overpowering sleep and the soul must guard against sluggishness and timidity. In the words of scripture, “Awake you just,” (1Co 15:34) and “I rose up and Am still with you,” (Ps 138:18) and “Do not lose heart” (cf Ep 3:13)…

Five of them were foolish and five of them were prudent,” the Lord says. Their virginity had nothing to do with Him calling them wise, for they were all virgins but rather, their good works. Even though your chastity is of angelic holiness, note well that the Angels’ holiness is free of all envy or other evil. So even though you are not rebuked for impurity, take care not to be so, for impatience or anger either… “Gird your loins” so that chastity may lighten our steps. “And light your lamps” (Lk 12:35) because the world is black as night, it stands in need of the light of the upright. “Your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father” (Mt 5:16).” – St Ephrem (306-373) Deacon in Syria, Father and Doctor of the Church [Commentary on the Diatessaron, 18, 15f. ; SC 121] (trans. cf Breviary).

PRAYER – Almighty, eternal God, Thou Who choose the weak things of the world to confound the strong, mercifully grant that we, who are celebrating the feast of blessed Agnes, Thy Virgin and Martyr, may reap the benefit of her patronal intercession with Thee. 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 "Follow Me", CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HUMILITY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 20 January – Blessed are you who are poor

One Minute Reflection – 20 January – “The Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” – St Fabian, Pope, and St Sebastian – Martyrs – Hebrews 11:33-39, Luke 6:17-23 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the Kingdom of God.” – Luke 6:20

REFLECTION – “Blessed,” He says, “are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 5:3). It would perhaps be doubtful what poor He was speaking of, if in saying “blessed are the poor ” He had added nothing which would explain the sort of poor and then, that poverty by itself, would appear sufficient to win the Kingdom of Heaven, which many suffer from, hard and heavy necessity. But when he says “blessed are the poor in spirit,” He shows that the Kingdom of Heaven must be assigned to those who are recommended by the humility of their spirit, rather than, by the smallness of their means.

Yet it cannot be doubted, that this possession of humility is more easily acquired by the poor than the rich: for submissiveness is the companion of those, who want, while loftiness of mind dwells with riches. Notwithstanding, even in many of the rich, is found that spirit which uses its abundance, not for the increasing of its pride but on works of kindness and counts that for the greatest gain, which it expends in the relief of others’ hardships. It is given to every kind and rank of men, to share in this virtue, because men may be equal in will, though unequal in fortune and it does not matter, how different they are in earthly means, who are found equal in spiritual possessions. Blessed, therefore, is poverty which is not possessed with a love of temporal things and does not seek to be increased with the riches of the world but is eager to amass heavenly possessions.” – St Leo the Great (400-461) Pope, Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon 95, PL 54, 461).

PRAYER – Be mindful of our weakness, Almighty God and since the burden of our sins weighs heavily upon us, may the glorious intercession of Thy holy Martyrs, Fabian and Sebastian sustain us. 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 ADVENT REFLECTIONS, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The SECOND COMING, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 19 January – ‘In fact, according to the merit and fervour of each one …’

One Minute Reflection – 19 January – “The Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” – St Marius and Family of Persia, (Died c 270) Martyrs – Hebrews 10:32-38, Matthew 24:3-13 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Tell us when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of Thy Coming and of the consummation of the world? ” – Matthew 24:3

REFLECTION – “… In fact, according to the merit and fervour of each one, there is a frequent and familiar advent of the Lord that, in this intermediary period, between His First and Last Coming, models us on one and prepares us to the other.

The Lord comes to us now, so that His First Coming to us, may not be in vain and that the Last One, may not be that of wrath. Through His Present Coming, in fact, He works at reforming our pride, in the image of the humility of His first advent, to then remodel our humble body, in the image of the glorified body He will show us, when He will return. This is why we should desire and fervently ask this personal coming – which gives us the grace of this first advent and promises us the glory of the last. …

The first was humble and hidden, the last will be resounding and magnificent; the one we are talking about is hidden but it is also magnificent. I say it is hidden, not because it is ignored by whom it concerns but because, it happens secretly in him. … He comes without being seen and He leaves without being noticed. His simple Presence is Light for the soul and for the spirit, by it you may see the invisible and get to know the unknown. This coming of the Lord puts the soul of whom, contemplates it, in a gentle and happy state of admiration. Then, from the inmost depths of man, the cry may burst out: “O Lord, Who is like Thee!” (Ps 34:10). Those who have experienced it know, please God, that those who have not yet had this experience, may feel, at least, the desire to!” – Blessed Guerric of Igny (c 1080-1157) Cistercian Abbot (2nd sermon for Advent, 2-4: PL 185, 15-17).”

PRAYER – O Lord, hear Thy people as they humbly pray, in union with the patronal intercession of Thy Saints that Thou wouldst grant us to enjoy peace, during our life on earth and to find help for life eternal. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on the CHURCH, St PETER!, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 18 January – ‘… Out of all the world, Peter alone was chosen … ‘ St Leo the Great

One Minute Reflection – 18 January – Feast of the Chair of the Apostle, St Peter at Rome – 1 Peter 1:1-7, Matthew 16:13-19 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Upon this rock I will build my church” … Matthew 16:18

REFLECTION – “Nothing escaped the Wisdom and Power of Christ, the elements of nature lay at His service, spirits obeyed Him, Angels served Him. … And yet, out of all the world, Peter alone was chosen to stand at the head, for the calling of all the peoples and the oversight of all the Apostles and Fathers of the Church. Thus, even though there are many Priests and shepherds among the People of God, Peter governed them all in person, while Christ also governs them in the capacity of Head. …

The Lord asks all the Apostles what people think of Him and they all say the same thing, so long as they are making known the doubts deriving from human ignorance. But when the Lord demands to know, what the disciples themselves think, the first to confess the Lord is he, who is the first in dignity of the Apostles. As he had said: “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God,” Jesus answers him: “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.” That is to say, blessed are you because My Father taught this to you. Earthly opinion has not led you astray but it is heavenly inspiration that has instructed you. It is not flesh and blood that enabled you to discover Me but He, Whose only Son I Am.

And so I say to you,” that is to say- just as my Father has manifested My Divinity to you, so I Am making known your superiority to you. “You are Peter” namely, I am the unshakeable Rock, the Cornerstone who makes two peoples one (Eph 2:14), the foundation other than which, no-one can lay any other (1 Cor 3:11). But you also, you are rock, since you are impregnable by My Strength and, what I have by virtue of My Power, you have in common with Me, by the fact,, that you participate in it. “On this rock I will build My Church” … On the firmness of this foundation, He says, will I build an everlasting temple and My Church, whose summit is to reach to Heaven, will be raised on the strength of that faith.” … Saint Pope Leo the Great (400-461) Father and Doctor of the Church ( 4th sermon for the Anniversary of his Consecration).

PRAYER – O God, Who together with the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven didst bestow on thy blessed Apostle Peter the pontifical power of binding and loosing, grant that by the aid of his intercession, we may be released from the bonds of our sins. ThroughJesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on PRIESTS, the PRIESTHOOD and CONSECRATED LIFE, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on WATCHING, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The SECOND COMING, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 17 January – ‘ …This Sacred Household is the Holy, Catholic Church …’

One Minute Reflection – 17 January – “The Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” – St Anthony Abbot (251-356) – Ecclesiasticus 45:1-6, Luke 12:35-40 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Blessed are those servants whom the Master, on His return, shall find watching.” – Luke 12:37

REFLECTION – “Wishing to emphasise the special office of the servants, whom He has placed in charge of His people, the Lord says, ‘Who, do you think, is the faithful and wise steward, whom the Lord sets over His household, to give to them their measure of wheat at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his Master will find so doing when he comes.” Who is that Master, brethren? Without a doubt, it is Christ, Who says to His disciples: “You call me Teacher and Lord and you are right, for so I Am” (Jn 13,13). What, too, is the Master’s Household? Doubtless it is the one which the Lord Himself ransomed… This Sacred Household is the Holy, Catholic Church, which is spread through the whole earth with abundant fertility and glories in the fact, that she has been redeemed by the Precious Blood of her Master. As He Himself says: “The Son of Man came, not to be served but to serve and to give His Life as a ransom for many” (Mk 10,45).

He is, too, the Good Shepherd ”Who laid down His Life for His sheep” (Jn 10,11)…As to who the steward is, who ought to be faithful, as well as wise, the Apostle Paul shows us, when, speaking of himself and his companions, he says: “This is how one should regard us, as the servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover, it is required of stewards that they should be found trustworthy” (1Cor 4,1-2).

Now, lest anyone of us should think that it is only the Apostles who have been made stewards…, the blessed Apostle Paul shows us that the Bishops also are stewards, when he says: “For a bishop, as God’s steward, must be blameless” (Tt 1,7)…We, therefore, who are the servants of the Master of the Household, we are the stewards of the Lord, we have received the measure of wheat to disburse to you.” – St Fulgentius of Ruspe (467-532) Bishop in North Africa (Homily 1, on the Lord’s servants) (trans. Breviary Common of Pastors).

PRAYER – May the intercession of the Blessed Abbot Anthony, commend us, we beseech Thee, O Lord, so that what we do not deserve by any merits of our own, we may obtain by his patronage. Through tJesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the BRIDEGROOM, CONFESSION/PENANCE, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on MYSTERIES of our FAITH, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 16 January – Whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth … Matthew 16:19

One Minute Reflection – 16 January – Saint Pope Marcellus I (Died 309) – 1 Peter 5:1-4, 10-11, Matthew 16:13-19 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in Heaven and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, it shall be loosed also in Heaven.” – Matthew 16:19

REFLECTION “Bridegroom and Bride, that is Christ and the Church, are as one, be it in receiving confession or in bestowing absolution. All this makes clear why Christ had to tell each of us: “Go, show yourself to the priest” (Mt 8,4)… It follows that apart from Christ, the Church cannot grant forgiveness and that Christ has no will to forgive, apart from the Church. The Church’s authority to forgive extends only to the repentant, to those, that is, whom Christ has already touched; Christ, on His part, has no intention of regarding as forgiven, one who despises the Church.

Doubtless, Christ need accept no restraints to His power of Baptising, Consecrating the Eucharist, Ordaining Priests, forgiving sins and the like but, the humble and faithful Bridegroom, prefers to confer such blessings, with the co-operation of His Bride. “What God,” then, “has joined, let no man put asunder” (Mt 19,6). “I say this is a great mystery and refers to Christ and the Church” (Eph 5,32)… To remove the Head from the Body (Col 1,18) were to ruin the whole Christ, irreparably. Christ, apart from the Church, is no more the whole Christ, than the Church is complete, if separated from Christ. Head and Body go to make the whole and entire Christ.” – Bl Isaac of Stella (c 1100 – c 1170) Cistercian Monk, Abbot, Theologian, Philosopher (Sermon 11, §11-814).

PRAYER – O Lord, we beseech Thee, graciously hear the prayers of Thy people, that we may be helped by the merits of blessed Marcellus, Thy Pope and Martyr, whose sufferings we celebrate. Through the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the BRIDEGROOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MIRACLES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 15 January – Why did our Lord change water into wine as His first Sign? – St Ephrem

One Minute Reflection – 15 January – Second Sunday after the Epiphany – Romans 12:6-16, John 2:1-11 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

This, the first of His Signs, Jesus worked at Cana in Galilee and manifested His Glory and His disciples believed in Him…” – John 2:11

REFLECTION – “Why did our Lord change water into wine as His first Sign? It was to show how God, Who transforms nature into something else, also works His transformation in the womb of the Virgin. In the same way, as the crown of His miraculous deeds, Jesus opened a tomb to make known His freedom, with regard to the death, which is hungry to swallow up everything.

To both authenticate and confirm, the twofold reversal of nature, brought by His Birth and His Resurrection, Jesus changed water into wine, without in any way altering the stone water-jars. This was the symbol of His own Body, miraculously conceived and wonderfully created in a virgin, without the working of a man… Contrary to their normal use, the jars… brought new wine into the world, without ever repeating the same miracle again. In the same way the Virgin conceived and brought Emmanuel into the world, (Is 7,14) without afterwards conceiving again. The miracle of the stone water-jars was that what was small, became great, sparseness was changed into superabundance, plain water into sweet wine… In Mary, on the other hand, the greatness and glory of the Godhead changed its appearance to take on the aspect of weakness and humiliation.

Those jars were used for the Jewish purifications; into them our Lord poured His teaching: He demonstrated that He came according to the Law and the prophets but with the purpose of changing them all, through His teaching, as the water became wine… «The Law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ» (Jn 1,17). The bridegroom who lived in Cana, invited the Bridegroom from Heaven and the Lord, Who was ready for that wedding, answered His invitation. Those seated at table invited Him, Who sets worlds in His Kingdom, and He sent them a wedding gift, able to delight them… They had no wine, even of an ordinary sort; He poured a little from His own abundance for them. In return for their invitation, He Himself, invited them to His own wedding!” – St Ephrem (306-373) Deacon in Syria, Father and Doctor of the Church (Commentary on the Diatessaron, 5, 6f).

PRAYER – Almighty, everlasting God, Thou Who govern both the heavens and the earth, graciously hear the humble prayers of Thy people and grant us Thy peace, all the days of our lives. Through the same 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 "Follow Me", CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on SACRED SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The HOLY SCRIPTURES, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 14 January – ‘ … The Father’s true Light …’

One Minute Reflection – 14 January – St Hilary (315-368) Confessor, Bishop, Father and Doctor of the Church – 2 Timothy 4:1-8, Matthew 5:13-19 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel but upon a candlestick that it may shine to all that are in the house. … ” – Matthew 5:15

REFLECTION – “The lamp placed on the lampstand, of which Scripture speaks, is our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father’s true Light, Who enlightens everyone coming into the world, (Jn1,9). As for the lampstand, it is the holy Church. It is upon her preaching that God’s resplendent Word rests, enlightening men the world over as inhabitants of His House and filling every soul with knowledge of God…

The Word has no wish to remain under a bushel; it longs to be set well in view, on the Church’s summit. Concealed beneath the letter of the Law, as under a bushel, the Word would have deprived everyone of Eternal Light. It would have been unable to grant spiritual contemplation to those who try to disengage themselves from the seduction of the senses, which are subject to illusion and quick to see only material, passing things. But if placed on the lampstand of the Church, that is to say, founded on worship in spirit and truth (Jn 4,24), it enlightens everyone… For the letter, unless it is understood according to the spirit, has only a material and limited value; of itself, it does not allow the mind to grasp the import of the written word…

So, let us not place the lighted lamp, that is to say the Word of God, under the bushel, by means of our thoughts and actions. Let us not be guilty of concealing, beneath the letter, the incomprehensible force of Divine Wisdom. Let us rather, set the Word on the lampstand of the Church, at the summit of pure contemplation which causes the light of Divine Revelation to shine out for everyone!” – St Maximus the Confessor (c 580-662) Abbot, Theologian, Father (Question 63 to Thalassius: PG 90, 667-670).

PRAYER – O God, Who gave to Thy people blessed Hilary, as a minister of salvation, grant we beseech Thee that we, who cherished him on earth as a teacher of life, may be found worthy to have him as an intercessor in Heaven. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on FAITH, St JOHN the BAPTIST, The BAPTISM of the LORD, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 13 January – ‘ … Make ready then the vessel of your soul that you may become a son of God … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 13 January – Octave Day of Epiphany – Isaias 60:1-6, John 1:29-34 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

And I knew Him not but he who sent me to Baptise with water said to me: He upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending and remaining upon Him, He it IS, Who Baptises with the Holy Spirit. And I saw and I gave testimony that this is the Son of God.” – John 1:33-34

REFLECTION – “Jesus Christ was the Son of God, yet He preached not the Gospel before His Baptism. If the Master Himself followed the right time in due order, ought we, His servants, to venture out of order? From that time Jesus began to preach (Matthew 4:17) , when the Holy Ghost had descended upon Him in a bodily shape, like a Dove, (Luke 3:22) not that Jesus might see Him first, for He knew Him even before He came in a bodily shape but that John, who was Baptising Him, might behold Him. For I, says he, knew Him not but He that sent me to Baptise with water, He said to me, Upon whomsoever you shall see the Spirit descending and abiding on Him that is He (John 1:33).

If you too have unfeigned piety, the Holy Ghost comes down on you also and a Father’s voice sounds over you from on high — not, ‘This is My Son’ alone because ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God.’ To Him belongs the ‘IS’ since He is always the Son of God – but to you, has now been made, since you have not the sonship by nature but receive it by adoption. He eternally ‘IS’ but you receive the grace progressively.

Make ready then the vessel of your soul that you may become a son of God and an heir of God and joint-heir with Christ (Romans 8:17); if, indeed, you are preparing yourself that you may receive; if you are drawing near in faith that you may be made faithful; if of set purpose, you are putting off the old man!” – St Cyril of Jerusalem (315-387) Bishop of Jerusalem, Father and Doctor of the Church (Catechetical Lecture 3: 14-15).

PRAYER – O God, Whose Only-begotten Son appeared in the substance of our flesh, grant, we pray Thee that we, who acknowledge His outward likeness to us, may deserve to be inwardly refashioned in His Image. Through the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, REDEMPTORISTS CSSR, THE EPIPHANY of the LORD, The HEART, The REDEMPTION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 12 January – ‘ … Let us too, with the holy Magi, adore our little King. …’ Jesus

One Minute Reflection – 12 January – “The Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” – Within the Octave of Epiphany – Isaias 60:1-6, Matthew 2:1-12 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

And seeing the Star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.” – Matthew 2:10

REFLECTION – “Jesus is born poor in a stable; the Angels of Heaven indeed acknowledge Him but men abandon and forsake Him on earth. Only a few shepherds come and pay Him homage. But our Redeemer was desirous of communicating to us the grace of His redemption and begins, therefore, to manifest Himself to the Gentiles, Who knew Him least. Therefore, He sends a Star to enlighten the holy Magi, in order that they may come and acknowledge and adore their Saviour. This was the first and sovereign grace bestowed upon us–our vocation to the Faith which was succeeded by our vocation to grace, of which men were deprived.

Behold the wise men, who immediately, without delay, set off upon their journey. The Star accompanies them as far as the cavern where the Holy Infant lies. On their arrival, they enter and what do they find? They found the Child with Mary. They find a poor maiden and a poor Infant wrapped in poor swaddling-clothes, without anyone to attend on Him or assist Him. But, lo! on entering into the little shed, these holy pilgrims feel a joy which they had never felt before; they feel their hearts chained to the dear little Infant Whom they behold. The straw, the poverty, the cries of their little Saviour–oh, what darts of love! Oh, what blessed flames are they to their enlightened hearts! The Infant looks upon them with a joyful countenance and this is the mark of affection, with which He accepts them amongst the first-fruits of His Redemption.

The holy kings then look at Mary, who does not speak –she remains silent but with her blessed countenance which breathes the sweetness of paradise, she welcomes them and thanks them for having been the first to come and acknowledge Her Son (as indeed He is) for their Sovereign Lord. See also how, out of reverence, they adore Him in silence and acknowledge Him for their God, kissing His Feet and offering Him their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. Let us too, with the holy Magi, adore our little King Jesus and let us offer Him all our hearts.” – St Alphonsus de Liguori (1696-1787) Bishop, Founder of the Redemptorists, Most Zealous Doctor (The Adoration of the Magi),

PRAYER – O God, Thou Who by the guidance of a star this day revealed Thy Only-begotten Son to the Gentiles, mercifully grant that we, who know Thee now by faith, may come to behold Thee in glory. Through the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the KING, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, THE EPIPHANY of the LORD, The HEART, The KINGDOM of GOD, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 11 January – Could such a One as this, be King?

One Minute Reflection – 11 January – “The Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” – Within the Octave of Epiphany – Isaias 60:1-6, Matthew 2:1-12 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

And entering into the house, they found the Child with Mary, His Mother and falling down, they adored Him …” – Matthew 2:11

REFLECTION – “God’s intention was not only to come down to earth but to become known there; not only to be born but to be recognised. In fact, it is with this recognition in mind that we hold this celebration of the Epiphany, the great day of His manifestation. For it was today that the Magi came from the East in search of the Sun of Justice at its rising (Mal 3,20), He of Whom we read: “Behold a Man whose name is the Orient,” (Zec 6,12 Vul.). Today they have adored the Virgin’s newborn Child, following the guidance of a New Star. What great cause for joy do we not find here, my brethren, as also in those words of the Apostle Paul: “The kindness and generous love of God our Saviour have appeared,” (Tit 3,4)…

What is this you are doing, you Magi? What is this you are doing? Are you adoring an Infant at the breast in a wretched hovel, wrapped in miserable rags? Can a Child such as this really be God? Yet, “The Lord is in His holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in Heaven.” (Ps 11:4) while you are looking for Him in a common stable, held in His Mother’s arms! Whatever are you doing? Why are you offering Him gold? Could such a One as this be King? Where, then, is His Royal Court, His Throne, His crowd of courtiers? Can a stable be a palace, a crib a throne, Mary and Joseph members of His Court? How on earth could wise men be so foolish as to adore a Baby, as contemptible by reason of His age, as for the poverty of His Family?

Mad? Yes, they have become so in order to be wise. The Holy Spirit has taught them already what the Apostle Paul would later proclaim: “Whoever would be wise, let him become a fool. For since the world, in all its wisdom, did not come to know God in His Wisdom, it has pleased God to save those who believe, through the foolishness of the Gospel we proclaim, (cf 1 Cor 1:21)… And so, they prostrate themselves before this poor Child; they do Him homage as to a King; they adore Him as a God. He Who outwardly guided them by a Star, has cast His Light into the interior of their hearts!” – St Bernard (1091-1153) Cistercian Monk, Father and Doctor of the Church (1st Sermon for the Epiphany).

PRAYER – O God, Thou Who by the guidance of a star this day revealed Thy Only-begotten Son to the Gentiles, mercifully grant that we, who know Thee now by faith, may come to behold Thee in glory. Through the same 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 "Follow Me", BAPTISM, CHRIST the SUN of JUSTICE, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, DIVINE MERCY, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on GRACE, THE EPIPHANY of the LORD, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 10 January – … Behold, the Star which they had seen in the east, went before them … Matthew 2:9

One Minute Reflection – 10 January – “The Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” –Within the Octave of Epiphany – Isaias 60:1-6, Matthew 2:1-12 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

… Behold, the Star which they had seen in the east, went before them, until it came and stood over where the Child was. ” – Matthew 2:9

REFLECTION – “Christ appeared in the world and, bringing beauty out of disarray, gave it lustre and joy. He bore the world’s sin and crushed the world’s enemy. He sanctified the fountains of waters and enlightened the minds of men. Into the fabric of miracles, He interwove ever greater miracles.

For on this day, land and sea share between them, the grace of the Saviour and the whole world is filled with joy. Today’s Feast of the Epiphany manifests even more wonders than the Feast of Christmas.

On the Feast of the Saviour’s birth, the earth rejoiced because it bore the Lord in a manger but on today’s Feast of the Epiphany, it is the sea that is glad and leaps for joy; the sea is glad because it receives the blessing of holiness in the river Jordan.

At Christmas we saw a weak Baby, giving proof of our weakness. In today’s Feast, we see a perfect Man, hinting at the perfect Son Who proceeds from the All-perfect Father. At Christmas the King puts on the Royal Robe of His Body; at Epiphany the very source enfolds and, as it were, clothes the river.

Come then and see new and astounding miracles – the Sun of Righteousness washing in the Jordan, fire immersed in water, God sanctified by the ministry of man.

Today every creature shouts in resounding song – Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord. Blessed is He who comes in every age, for this is not His first coming. And Who is He? Tell us more clearly, I beg you, blessed David – the Lord is God and has shone upon us. David is not alone in prophesying this; the Apostle Paul adds his own witness, saying: the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all men and instructing us. Not for some men but for all. To Jews and Greeks alike God bestows salvation through Baptism, offering Baptism as a common grace for all.

Come, consider this new and wonderful deluge, greater and more important than the flood of Noah’s day. Then, the water of the flood destroyed the human race but now, the water of Baptism has recalled the dead to life, by the power of the One Who was Baptised. In the days of the flood, the dove with an olive branch in its beak foreshadowed the fragrance of the good odour of Christ the Lord; now the Holy Spirit, coming in the likeness of a Dove, reveals the Lord of mercy.” – St Proclus of Constantinople (Died c 446) Confessor, Archbishop of Constantinople, Father (An excerpt from On the Holy God-showing, Sermon 7)

PRAYER – O God, Thou Who by the guidance of a star this day revealed Thy Only-begotten Son to the Gentiles, mercifully grant that we, who know Thee now by faith, may come to behold Thee in glory. Through the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, FEBRUARY-The HOLY FAMILY, GOD ALONE!, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, THE HOLY FAMILY - FAMILIAE SANCTAE, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 9 January – ‘ … She, who carried Him, Who carries the universe … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 9 January – The Holy Family – Within the Octave of Epiphany – Colossians 3:12-17, Luke 2:42-52 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

And His Mother kept all these words in her heart.” – Luke 2:51

REFLECTION – “Often, it seems to us, Mary forgot to eat and to drink, keeping vigil in order to think about Christ, to see Christ in His flesh. She burned with love of Him and passionately loved to serve Him. She often did what the Song of Songs sings about: “I was sleeping but my heart kept vigil.” (Song 5:2) Even when she was resting, she continued to dream of Him Who filled her thoughts throughout the day. Whether she was keeping vigil or resting in peace, she always lived in Him, was always occupied with Him.

Where her treasure was, there also was her heart (Mt 6:21); where her glory was, there also was her mind. She loved her Lord and her Son with all her heart, with all her mind, with all her strength (Mt 22:37). She saw with her eyes, touched with her hands, the Word of Life (1 Jn 1:1). How blessed was Mary, to whom it was given to embrace Him who embraces and nourishes everything! How happy was she, who carried Him, Who carries the universe (Heb 1:3), she, who nursed a Son, Who gives her life, a Son Who nourishes her and all beings on earth (Ps 145:15).

The One Who is the Wisdom of the Father, put His arms around her neck, the One Who is the strength, that gives movement to everything, sat in her arms. He Who is the rest of souls, (Mt 11:29) rested on her motherly breast. How gently He held her in His hands, peacefully looked at her, He Whom the angels wish to contemplate (1 Pet 1:12) and He gently called her, He Whom every being calls upon when in need. Filled with the Holy Spirit, she held Him close to her heart … She never had enough of seeing Him or of hearing Him, Whom “many prophets and kings wished to see … but did not see.” (Lk 10:24) Thus Mary grew evermore in love and her mind was unceasingly attached to Divine contemplation.” – St Amadeus of Lausanne (1108-1159) Bishop (Homily on the Motherhood of Mary, 4).

PRAYER – O Lord Jesus Christ, Thou Who while subject to Mary and Joseph, hallowed family life with virtues beyond description, grant us by their combined intercession, that, having been taught by the example of the Holy Family, we may attain unto their everlasting companionship. Through the same 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, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, THE EPIPHANY of the LORD, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 7January – Shine like that Star!

One Minute Reflection – 7January – Within the Octave of Epiphany – Isaias 60:1-6, Matthew 2:1-12 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Where is He Who is born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the east and are come to adore Him.” – Matthew 2:2

REFLECTION – “All these things we know to have taken place ever since the three wise men, aroused in their far-off land, were led by a star to recognise and worship the King of Heaven and earth.
The responsiveness of that star exhorts us to imitate it’s obedience and, as much as we can, to make ourselves servants of that grace which invites us all to Christ.
For, whoever lives religiously and chastely in the Church and “sets his mind on the things which are above, not on the things that are upon the earth” (Col 3:2) resembles that heavenly light in a certain sense.
So long as he maintains in himself the brightness of a holy life, he points out to many, like a star, the way that leads to God.
All having this concern, dearly-beloved… you will shine in the Kingdom like children of Light.
”… St Pope Leo the Great (400-461) Father & Doctor of the Church.

PRAYER – O God, Thou Who by the guidance of a star this day revealed Thy Only-begotten Son to the Gentiles, mercifully grant that we, who know Thee now by faith, may come to behold Thee in glory. Through the same 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 "Follow Me", ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on MORTIFICATION, QUOTES on PRAYER, THE EPIPHANY of the LORD, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 6 January – The Epiphany of the Lord – Chalk the Door!

Quote/s of the Day – 6 January – The Epiphany of the Lord – Isaias 60:1-6, Matthew 2:1-12 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

They fell down and worshipped him.
Then, opening their treasures,
they offered him gifts of gold,
frankincense and myrrh
.”

Matthew 2:11

Thus we offer the Lord,
Gold, when we shine in His Sight
with the light of heavenly wisdom ….
We offer Him Frankincense,
when we send up pure prayer before Him
and Myrrh, when, “mortifying our flesh
with its vices and passions” (Gal 5:24)
by self-control, we carry the cross behind Jesus.

St Bruno of Segni O.Cart. (c 1030 -1101)
Bishop

(1st Sermon on the Epiphany PL 165, 863).

Chalk the Door – Epiphany House Blessing
20 C+M+B 23
“Christus mansionem benedicat”

Peace be to this house
and to all who dwell herein.
From the east came the Magi to Bethlehem
to adore the Lord – “and opening their treasures
they offered
precious gifts –
Gold for the Great King,
Incense for the True God
and Myrrh to symbolise His Burial.

The equation is written to be the first two digits of the year,
followed by the initials C, M and B,
followed by the last two digits of the year.
Each portion is split by plus signs (being the Sign of the Cross).
For this year, the equation would be written as
“20 + C + M + B + 23”
The chalking holds two meanings.
The C, M and B, refer to the traditional names
of the Magi: Caspar, Melchior and Balthasar.
The letters also stand for the Latin phrase
“Christus Mansionem Benedicat” which means
“May Christ Bless this House”
The plus signs represents the Cross
and the 20 and 23 simply refer to the year.

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, THE EPIPHANY of the LORD, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 6 January – … Thy Light is come and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.” – Isaias 60:1

One Minute Reflection – 6 January – The Epiphany of the Lord – Isaias 60:1-6, Matthew 2:1-12 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Arise, be enlightened, O Jerusalem, for thy Light is come and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.” – Isaias 60:1

REFLECTION – “ … In virtue of it this day also, you are sanctified by the enlightening of the Church. Thanks be to Thee, true Light, Thou that “enlighten every man coming into this world” (Jn 1:9), Thou Who for this very purpose, have come into this world as a Man. …

O God, Thou Who gives Light to all nations, of Thou we will sing – “Behold the Lord will come and enlighten the eyes of His servants” (cf. Jude 14). Behold, Thou hast come, my Light: “Enlighten my eyes that I may never fall asleep in death” (Ps 12:[12],4)… Thou has come, O Light of the faithful and behold Thou has granted us today, to rejoice at the enlightening of faith that is, of our lamp. Grant us also to rejoice always at the enlightening of the darkness that remains in us…

This is the way in which you should advance, O faithful soul, in order that you may cast off the darkness of this world and arrive at your home country of eternal brightness, where “your darkness will be like midday” (Is 58:10) and “night will be lit up like day” (Ps 138:12). Then indeed, then “you will see and be radiant, your heart will thrill and rejoice” (Is 60;5), when the whole earth is filled with the majesty of unbounded Light and “His glory is seen in you” (Is 60;2)… “Come and let us walk in the Light of the Lord!” (Is 2:5); as “children of light” let us walk “from brightness to brightness, as led by the Lord Who is Spirit“ (2 Cor 3:18).” – Bl Guerric of Igny (c 1080-1157) Cistercian Abbot (3rd sermon for Epiphany SC 166).

PRAYER – O God, Thou Who by the guidance of a star this day revealed Thy Only-begotten Son to the Gentiles, mercifully grant that we, who know Thee now by faith, may come to behold Thee in glory. Through the same 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).

Give me, therefore, I pray Thee,
this gold, this incense and this myrrh.
Give me the gold of Thy holy love,
give me the spirit of holy prayer,
give me the desire and strength
to mortify myself in everything
that displeases Thee.
I am resolved to obey Thee and to love Thee
but Thou knowest my weakness,
oh, give me the grace to be faithful to Thee!

St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787)
Most Zealous Doctor of the Church

Posted in DECEMBER - The DIVINE INFANCY and The IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, DOCTORS of the Church, JANUARY month of THE MOST HOLY NAME of JESUS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, REDEMPTORISTS CSSR, The DIVINE INFANT, The HOLY NAME, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 5 January – For they are dead who sought the life of the Child.

One Minute Reflection – 5 January – “The Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” – Vigil of the Epiphany – Galatians 4:1-7, Matthew 2:19-23 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Arise and take the Child and His Mother and go into the land of Israel. For they are dead who sought the life of the Child.” – Matthew 2:20

REFLECTION – “My dear Jesus, Thou art the King of Heaven
but now I behold Thee as an Infant wandering over the earth –
tell me whom dost Thou seek?
I pity Thee when I see Thee, so poor and humbled but I pity Thee more when I see Thee treated with such ingratitude by the same men whom Thou came to save. Thou dost weep but I also weep because I have been one of those who in times past have despised and persecuted Thee. But now I value Thy grace more than all the kingdoms of the world; forgive me, O my Jesus, all the evil I have committed against Thee and permit me to carry Thee always in my heart during the journey of my life to eternity, even as Mary carried Thee in her arms during the flight into [and return from] Egypt.” – St Alphonsus Maria de Liguori (1696-1787) Doctor of the Church”

PRAYER – O Almighty and everlasting God, do Thou order all our actions in conformity with Thy good pleasure that through the name of Thy well-beloved Son, we may worthily abound in all good works. Through the same 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 7 GIFTS of the HOLY SPIRIT, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on MYSTERIES of our FAITH, SACRED HEART QUOTES, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 3 January – This is that disciple … John 21:24

One Minute Reflection – 3 January – “The Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus” – Octave Day of St John, Apostle – Ecclesiasticus 15:1-6, John 21:19-24 –Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

This is that disciple who bears witness concerning these things and who has written these things and we know that his witness is true.” – John 21:24

REFLECTION – “In proportion to the grace that caused Jesus to love him and enabled him to rest on Jesus’ Breast at the Supper (Jn 13:23), John abundantly received [the Spirit’s gifts] of understanding and wisdom (Is 11:2) – understanding with which to comprehend Scripture, wisdom with which to compose his own books with wonderful skill. As a matter of fact, he did not receive this gift right from the time when he rested on our Lord’s Breast, even if he was subsequently able to draw from that Heart “in which are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col 2:3). When he says, that when he went into the tomb “he saw and he believed,” he acknowledges that “they did not yet understand the Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead” (Jn 20:9). Like all the other Apostles, John received its fullness, when the Holy Spirit came [at Pentecost] and when grace had been given to each of them “according to the measure of Christ’s gift” (Eph 4:7). …

The Lord Jesus loved this disciple more than all the others … and opened the secrets of Heaven to him … to make of him the author of that profound Mystery which man can say nothing about, of himself: the Mystery of the Word, God’s Utterance, the Word made flesh. This is the fruit of that love. Yet even though He loved him, it was not to him that Jesus said: “You are Peter, and on this rock I shall build my Church” (Mt 16:18) … While He loved all His disciples and especially Peter, with a love in mind and soul, our Lord loved John with the love of His Heart …. In the order of Apostleship, Simon Peter received the first place and the “keys of the Kingdom of heaven” (Mt 16:19) but John, won another inheritance, the spirit of understanding, “a wealth of joy and gladness” (Sir 15:6).” – Rupert of Deutz (c 1075- c 1130) Benedictine Monk, Theologian and Writer (The Works of the Holy Spirit, IV, 10 SC 165)

PRAYER – O Lord, graciously shed light upon Thy Church, so that, enlightened by the teachings of blessed John, Thy Apostle and Evangelist, she may gain Thy everlasting rewards.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 "Follow Me", CHRIST the HIGH PRIEST, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, JANUARY month of THE MOST HOLY NAME of JESUS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, The HOLY NAME, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 2 January – ‘ … Give us grace, Lord, to hope in Thy Name … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 2 January – The Feast and the Month of the Most Holy Name of Jesus – Titus 2:11-15, Luke 2:21 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

And at the end of eight days, when He was circumcised, He was called Jesus”…Luke 2:21”

REFLECTION – “For His chosen ones, scattered throughout the world, we shall make our constant prayer to the Creator of the universe. May He allow none of them to fall away but preserve them all, through His beloved Son, Jesus Christ, through Whom He called us out of darkness into light, out of ignorance to the knowledge of His glorious Name.

Give us grace, Lord, to hope in Thy Name, to which all creatures owe their being. Open the eyes of our heart to know Thee alone, the Most High in the highest Heavens, the Holy One, Whose dwelling is in the holy Heaven. Thou abase the arrogance of the proud, frustrate the designs of the godless, exalt the lowly and humble the lofty. Thou give men wealth and take it away; Thou slay them, save them and give them new life. Alone the Benefactor of spirits and God of all flesh, Thy gaze penetrates the depths, Thou observes the doings of men. Helper of those in peril, Saviour of those in despair, Thy created and still, keep watch over all that draws breath. Thou cause the peoples on the earth to multiply and from them all, choose those who love Thee through Jesus Christ, Thy beloved Son. Through Him Thou has instructed us, sanctified us, honoured us.

Lord, we entreat Thee to help us. Come to the aid of the afflicted, pity the lowly, raise up the fallen, show Thy face to the needy, heal the sick, convert the wayward, feed the hungry, deliver the captives, support the weak, encourage the fainthearted. Let all nations know that Thou alone are God; Jesus Christ is Thy Son and we are Thy people and the sheep of Thy pasture. …

Do not hold all the transgressions of Thy servants against them but purify us by Thy truth and so guide our footsteps that, by walking in holiness and justice and simplicity of heart, we may do what is good and pleasing in Thy sight and in the sight of our leaders.

Lord, let the light of Thy Face shine upon us, so that we may enjoy Thy blessings in peace, protected by Thy Strong Hand and freed from all sin, by Thy outstretched Arm and deliver us from those, who hate us unjustly.

Give peace and concord to us and to all mankind, even as Thou gave it to our ancestors, when they devoutly called upon Thee in faith and truth. Lord, Thou alone are able to bestow these and even greater benefits upon us. We praise Thee through Jesus Christ, our High Priest and the champion of our souls. Through Him be glory and majesty to Thee now and throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” – St Clement I (c 35-c 101) Pope from about 88 to 101, Martyr, Apostolic Father of the Church (An excerpt from Letter to the Corinthians).

PRAYER – O God, Thou Who by the fruitful virginity of blessed Mary, have bestowed upon mankind the rewards of eternal salvation, grant, we beseech Thee, that we may enjoy the intercession of her, through whom we have been found worthy to receive among us, the Author of Life, our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son. Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on WATCHING, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 31 December – ‘… Someone who comes knocking at the door, is always wanting to come in …’

One Minute Reflection – 31 December – “The Month of the Divine Infant and the Immaculate Conception” – The Seventh Day of the Octave of Christmas and the Memorial of St Pope Sylvester I (Died 335) – 2 Timothy 4:1-8, Luke 12:35-40 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he comes and knocks.” – Luke 12:35-36

REFLECTION – “God, the Word, stirs up the lazy and arouses the sleeper. For indeed, someone who comes knocking at the door, is always wanting to come in. But it depends on us, if He does not always enter or always remain.,, May your door be open to Him who comes; open your soul, enlarge your spiritual capacities, that you may discover the riches of simplicity, the treasures of peace and sweetness of grace. Expand your heart; run to meet the Sun of that Eternal Light that “enlightens everyone” (Jn 1,9). It is certain, that this true Light shines for all but, if anyone shuts their windows, then they themselves, shut themselves off from this Eternal Light.

So even Christ remains outside, if you shut the door of your soul. It is true, that He could enter but He does not want to use force, He does not put those who refuse under pressure.  Descended from the Virgin, born from her womb, He shines throughout the universe to give light to all. Those who long to receive the light, that shines with an everlasting brightness, open up to Him. No night comes to intervene. Indeed, the sun we see each day, gives way to night’s darkness but the Sun of Justice (Mal 3,20) knows no setting, for Wisdom is not overcome by evil.” – St Ambrose (340-397) Bishop of Milan and Father and Doctor of the Church (12th Sermon on Psalm 118).

PRAYER – Look forgivingly on Thy flock, Eternal Shepherd and keep it in Thy constant protection, by the intercession of blessed Sylvester thy Confessor and Sovereign Pontiff, whom thou didst constitute Shepherd of the whole Church. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 30 December – ‘ … Embrace the Wisdom of God …’

One Minute Reflection – 30 December – “The Month of the Divine Infant and the Immaculate Conception”– The Sixth Day of the Octave of Christma – Galatians 4:1-7, Luke 2:33-40 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, His Mother: Behold this child is set for the fall and for the rise of many in Israel and for a sign which shall be contradicted” … Luke 2:34

REFLECTION – “Who is there today who, as he holds a lighted candle in his hand, does not immediately think of the old man, who today received Jesus in his arms, the Word in the flesh, the Light in the wax and Who bore witness that He was the Light that shines upon all nations? The old man was himself a burning flame that enlightens and gives witness to the Light, he who, in the Holy Spirit with Whom he was filled, came to receive, O God, Thy love within Thy Temple (Ps 47[48],10) and bear witness that Thou art the Love and Light of Thy people…

Rejoice, just old man; look now at what thou had once foreseen – darkness has disappeared from the world; the nations walk by Thy Light (Is 60,3). The whole earth is filled with the glory (Is 6,3) of this Light which, in the past, thou used to hide in thy heart and which today, illumines thy eyes… Embrace the Wisdom of God, O blessed old man and may thy youth be renewed (Ps 102[103],5). Receive the mercy of God in thy heart and thy old age will know the sweetness of mercy. “He will rest in my bosom” says Scripture (Wsd 1,12). Even when I give Him back to His Mother, He will continue to dwell with me; my heart will be filled with His mercy and, even more, the heart of His Mother… I give thanks and rejoice for thee, full of grace, for thou gave birth to the mercy I have received, the candle which thou prepared, I am holding in my hands…

And thee, brethren, look at the candle that burns in the hands of Simeon; light thy candles with his light… Then, not only will thou bear a light in thy hands but thou thyselves, will be a light for others. A light in thy hearts, a light in thy lives, a light for thy brothers and sisters.” – Blessed Guerric of Igny (c 1080-1157) Cistercian Abbot (1st Sermon for the Purification, 2-3).

PRAYER – O Almighty and eternal God, direct our actions in conformity with Thy will, that in the name of Thy beloved Son we may be worthy to do good works in abundance.Through the same 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 FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MARTYRS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on JEALOUSY, QUOTES on SUFFERING, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 28 December – ‘ … He wanted them to possess Heaven, rather than earth. …’

One Minute Reflection – 28 December – “The Month of the Divine Infant and the Immaculate Conception” – The Holy Innocents, Martyrs – Apocalypse 14:1-5, Matthew 2:13-18 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Then Herod, perceiving that he was deluded by the wise men, was exceeding angry and sending, killed all the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all the borders …” – Matthew 2:16

REFLECTION – “Where does this jealousy lead?… The crime committed today shows us. Fear of a rival to his earthly kingdom fills Herod with anxiety, he plots to suppress “the newborn King” (Mt 2:2), the Eternal King; he fights against his Creator and puts innocent children to death… As for those children, what fault had they committed? Their tongues were dumb, their eyes had seen nothing, their ears heard nothing, their hands done nothing. They accepted death who had not known life. … Christ reads the future and knows the secrets of the heart, He weighs our thoughts and probes our intentions (cf. Ps 138[139]): why did He forsake them? … Why did the newborn heavenly King abandon these companions in innocence, forget the sentinels watching around His crib, to such an extent that the foe, who wanted to get at the King, ravaged His whole army?

My brethren, Christ did not forsake His soldiers but covered them with honour, by allowing them to conquer, before they had lived and to carry away the prize, without a fight. … He wanted them to possess Heaven, rather than earth. … He sent them before Him as His heralds. He did not abandon them but saved those who went on ahead. He did not forget them. …

Blessed are they who have exchanged their travail for repose, their pains for ease, their suffering for joy. They are alive! Yes, they are alive, they live indeed who have undergone death for Christ’s sake. … Happy the tears their mothers shed for these infants, they have won them the grace of Baptism. … May He who deigned to rest in a stable, be pleased to lead us too, to the heavenly pastures.” – St Peter Chrysologus (400-450) Bishop of Ravenna, Father and Doctor of the Church (Sermon 152 PL 52, 604).

PRAYER – O God, Whose praise the Innocents, Thy Martyrs, this day proclaimed, not by speaking but by dying, put to death in us all the wickedness of sin, so that the faith which our tongue professes, may be proclaimed also by our life. 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 "Follow Me", FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on FRIENDSHIP, QUOTES on JEALOUSY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on THE WORLD, SACRED HEART REFLECTIONS, St PETER!, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 27 December – ‘ … Peter, therefore, was exposed to action, John was reserved for love … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 27 December – “The Month of the Divine Infant and the Immaculate Conception” – St John the Apostle and Evangelist, the Beloved – Ecclesiasticus 15:1-6, John 21:19-24 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

Peter saw following them, the disciple whom Jesus loved, the one who, at the supper, had leaned back upon His breast … Peter, therefore, seeing him, said to Jesus, Lord and what of this man?” – John 21:20-21

REFLECTION – “There are some persons who think they are not loved because they cannot be promoted and who allege that they are despised, if they are not entrusted with responsibilities and offices. We know that as a result of this type of thinking, no small discord has sprung up, among those who were considered friends, so that estrangement followed upon indignation and railings upon estrangement …

Let no-one say that he is held in contempt, for the reason that he is not promoted, since the Lord Jesus pre­ferred Peter to John in this respect; nor did He, on that account, lessen His affection for John because He had given Peter the leadership. To Peter He commended his Church; to John, His most beloved Mother (Jn 19:27). To Peter He gave the keys of His Kingdom (Mt 16:19); to John He revealed the secrets of His Heart (Jn 13:25). Peter, therefore, was the more exalted; John, the more secure. Although Peter was established in power, nevertheless, when Jesus said, “One of you will betray me,” (Jn 13:21) he was afraid and trembled along with the rest but John, leaning on the bosom of his Master, was made the bolder and, at a nod from Peter, asked who the traitor was. Peter, therefore, was exposed to action, John was reserved for love, according to the words of Christ: “So will I have him remain until I come.” Thus Christ gave us the example that we might do in like manner.” – St Aelred of Rielvaux (1110-1167) Cistercian Monk (Spiritual Friendship, III, 115, 117).

PRAYER – O Lord, graciously shed light upon Thy Church, so that, enlightened by the teachings of blessed John, ThyApostle and Evangelist, she may gain YThy everlasting rewards.Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in CHRIST the SUN of JUSTICE, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 25 December – ‘ … Let us then run to Bethlehem, the town of the Good News! … ‘

One Minute Reflection – 25 December – “The Nativity of Our Lord, Christmas Day! – The Month of the Divine Infant and the Immaculate Conception” – Titus 2:11-15, Luke 2:1-14 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

“… For today in the City of David, a Saviour has been born to you, Who is Christ the Lord.” – Luke 2:11

REFLECTION – “Brethren, now we have been told about the miracle, let us turn aside to see this unusual sight, as Moses did (Ex 3:3) – in Mary, the burning bush is not consumed, the Virgin gives birth to the Light, without defilement … Let us then run to Bethlehem, the town of the Good News! If we are real shepherds, staying awake on our watch, then it is to us that the voice of the Angels is addressed, announcing a great joy … “Glory to God in the highest for peace is coming down to earth!”  There, where, only yesterday, there was nothing but misfortune, battlefields and exile, now earth receives peace for today “Truth shall spring out of the earth and justice shall look down from heaven” (Ps 84[85]:12). Behold the fruit earth gives to humankind, in reward for the goodwill reigning among men (Lk 2:14). God is joined to man, to raise man to the stature of God.

At this news, my brethren, let us go to Bethlehem to behold … the mystery of the crib, a child wrapped in swaddling clothes rests in a manger. A Virgin, after giving birth, His undefiled Mother, embraces her Son. Let us repeat the words of the prophet along with the shepherds: “As we have heard, so we have seen in the city of our God.” (Ps 47[48]:9)

But why does our Lord seek shelter in this cave at Bethlehem? Why is He sleeping in a manger? Why does He participate in Israel’s census?  My brethren, He who brings liberty to the world, comes to be born into our slavery to death. He is born in this cave to reveal Himself to us, who are immersed in darkness and the shadow of death. He rests in a manger because, He is the One Who makes grass grow for the cattle (Ps 104[103],14). He is the Bread of Life, Who feeds us with a spiritual food that we too might live in the Spirit… What more joyful Feast is there than that of today? Christ, the Sun of Justice (Mal 3,20), comes to illumine our night. What had fallen, is raised up again, what was overcome, is now set free… what was dead is restored to life… Let us all sing today with one voice over all the earth: “Death came through one man, Adam, today salvation has come through One Man (cf Rom 5,17)” … St Gregory of Nyssa (c 335–c 395) Bishop, Father of the Church (Sermon on the Nativity).

PRAYER – O God, Who have brightened this most holy night with the splendour of the true Light, grant, we beseech Thee that we may know in Heaven the joy of that light which we have known mystically on earth. Through the same 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 "Follow Me", CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, JANUARY month of THE MOST HOLY NAME of JESUS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, Quotes on SALVATION, QUOTES on TEMPTATION, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, REDEMPTORISTS CSSR, The HOLY NAME

One Minute Reflection – 24 December – ‘ … The Name of Jesus, is light for our minds, food for our hearts, medicine for our souls. …’

One Minute Reflection – 24 December – The Vigil of the Nativity of Our Lord – “The Month of the Divine Infant and the Immaculate Conception” – Romans 1:1-6, Matthew 1:18-21 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/

She shall bring forth a Son and thou shall call His Name Jesus; for He shall save His people from their sins.” – Matthew 1:21

REFLECTION – “The Name of Jesus is a Divine Name which the Lord made known to Mary through the voice of the Archangel Gabriel: “Thou shalt give Him the Name, Jesus” (Lk 1,31). A Name which, for this reason, is called “above all names”, “the only Name by which we can be saved” (Phil 2,9; Acts 4,12). This great Name is compared to oil by the Holy Spirit: “Thy Name is oil poured out” (Sg 1,3). Why? Because, as Saint Bernard explains, just as oil is both light, food and medicine, so the Name of Jesus, is light for our minds, food for our hearts, medicine for our souls.

Light for our minds – it was the brilliance of this Name which enabled the world to pass from the shadows of idolatry, to the Light of Faith. We were born in a land, whose inhabitants were all pagans, before the coming of the Lord. We would be as they were, if He had not come to enlighten us. So how should we not give thanks to Jesus Christ for the gift of faith!…

Food for our hearts – this, too, is what the Name of Jesus is. For it calls to our minds all the painful work Jesus accomplished to save us. This is how he comforts us in tribulation, strengthens us to walk along the way of salvation, revives our hope and inflames us with love for our God.

And medicine for our souls – Jesus’ Name makes them strong in the face of temptation and our enemies’ attacks. Do they hear this Holy Name? The powers of hell tremble and take to flight. This is what Saint Paul says: “that at the Name of Jesus, every knee should bow, in the heavens, on earth and in the underworld” (Phil 2,10). No-one who is tempted, will fall, if he calls on Jesus and, for as long as he calls, he will persevere and be saved (cf Ps 18[17],4).” – St Alphonsus Maria de Liguori (1696-1787) Bishop and Doctor of the Church (Meditations for the Octave of Christmas no 8).

PRAYER – O God, Thou Who gladden us, year after year, with the expectation of our redemption, grant that we, who now welcome with joy Thy Only-begotten Son as our Redeemer, may also gaze upon Him without fear when He comes as our Judge, our Lord Jesus Christ. Through the same 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).