Posted in GOD is LOVE, GOD the FATHER, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on FEAR

Thought for the Day – 18 September – Filial and Servile Fear

Thought for the Day – 18 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Filial and Servile Fear

“We should not be afraid of God because He is our greatest benefactor and loves us infinitely.
When we are lost, He searches for us as a loving father would search for a wandering son.
Because they think only of the majesty and justice of God, some people keep themselves at a distance from Him, as Adam did, after he had sinned.
They forget that the Lord told Adam, the sinner, of the coming of the pardoning Redeemer (Gen 3:9).
Bossuet truly observes, that “after the curse which came upon men through sin, there has always remained in their hearts, a certain dread of the supernatural, which prevents them from approaching God with confidence.”
Jansenism increased this fear, emphasising the justice and majesty of God, rather, than the infinite love of Jesus and the beauty of His teaching.

Some writers compare our souls with the divine majesty and justice, in order to stress our unworthiness but, they forget, that Jesus is “Meek and humble of heart,” that He forgave the penitent woman, the good thief and the adulteress and, had kind words for the lost sheep and the prodigal son.
They never think of the wonderful words of the beloved disciple: “God is love” (1 Jn 4:16).

This false fear of God, dries up our piety and lessens our trust in His mercy.
It can lead to moroseness, to scrupulosity and to discouragement.

We should avoid this excessive fear which separates us from God.
Even though we are sinful and unworthy, we should remember, that God is our loving Father, Who is always ready to help us and to grant us forgiveness.
We should recall, moreover, that out of love for us, He did not spare His own Son, (Cf Rom 8:32) but gave Him to us for our redemption.
If Jesus shed His blood and died for us, how can we doubt His love?”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 17 September – The Commandments and the Desires of Jesus Christ

Thought for the Day – 17 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Commandments and the Desires of Jesus Christ

“Sanctity consists, in doing the will of God, in all things.
We can become perfect by doing His will, from the motive of love alone.
“He who has my commandments and keeps them,” said Jesus, “he it is who loves me. But he who loves me, will be loved by my Father and I will love him and manifest myself to him. If anyone love me, he will keep my word and my Father will love him and we will come to him and make our abode with him” (Jn 14:21-23).

Do we wish to know if we love God sincerely?
The proof is this.
If we do His will and obey His precepts, it is a sign that we love him but, if we do not observe His commandments, we lie when we say we love Him.
We must, therefore, show our love, by observing in all things, the commandments of God.
He gave us these commandments our of love for us, so that, by observing them, we should be saved and should be happy with Him.
Even as He has given them out of love, we should observe them out of love, for He is our supreme and only good.
Just as Jesus lovingly did the will of His heavenly Father, from Bethlehem to Nazareth, from Nazareth to Calvary and from Calvary to Heaven, so we should follow in His footsteps, by doing the adorable will of God in all the circumstances of our lives, both joyful and sorrowful.
But, we must obey the divine will out of love, that is, because we love God whole-heartedly and above all created things.

Everything is easy to him who loves.
“When we love him who gives us orders,” says St Francis de Sales, “even the hardest of actions becomes easy.”

Let us examine ourselves.
Are we always ready to obey the commandments of God at any cost and would we die rather than offend Him?
Let us examine ourselves also, to see, if we do all this out of love for Jesus.
“He who does not love,” writes St John, “abides in death” (1 Jn 3:14).”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 15 September – Christ’s Work in Us

Thought for the Day – 15 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Christ’s Work in Us

“It is not enough that Jesus live in us ; He must increase and act in us continually.
The Spiritual life is like natural life.
It cannot stop, for to halt would mean death!
If Jesus is our life, He should live in us with ever-increasing intensity.
Life is like a stairway, we are either going up or coming down.

If we continue to climb energetically towards Jesus, we shall be coming nearer to Christian perfection.
If, on the other hand, we halt, the supernatural life of Jesus in us, will begin to weaken.
Tepedity will replace fervour and sin will succeed tepidity.
It is difficult to remain unchanged because, life involves movement.
‘Jesus Christ,” writes St Augustine, “was born a baby but, He did not remain one. He grew to boyhood, to adolescence and then, to maturity.”

It is necessary for us to grow also.
More precisely, it is necessary that Jesus grow continuously in us through faith, charity and good works.
“Court the good,” admonishes St Paul, “from a good motive always … until Christ is formed in you” (Gal 4:18-19).

It is not enough that Christ be born in us, it is necessary that He increase to the fullness of perfection (Cf Eph 4:13-16).
“Jesus increases daily,” writes Origen, “in the soul of the holy and just man, which mirror His grace, His wisdom and His sanctity. In the soul of the unfortunate sinner, however, Christ decreases and dies.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARIAN TITLES, MARY'S MONTH, MATER DOLOROSA - Mother of SORROWS, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on PATIENCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SEPTEMBER-The SEVEN SORROWS of MARY

Thought for the Day – 15 September – Mary’s Patience 2

Thought for the Day – 15 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Mary’s Patience 2

“We also have our share of suffering and humiliation.
It is useless to try and escape from it, useless to rebel against it.
If we embrace the cross patiently and lovingly, a Jesus and Mary did, it will seem lighter, even welcome.
If we attempt to cast it from us, it will weigh more heavily on our shoulders.
There are two kinds of men, those who bear their cross, patiently and embrace it because they wish to be like Jesus and, those who do not want to suffer and rebel.
The former may stagger beneath their daily burden but, they have peace of soul because they are putting into practice, the great Gospel precept: “By your patience, you will win your souls” (Lk 21:19).
They know that they are on the path to Heaven and this thought is consolation, which cannot be taken from them.
The second group of men, rebel against the cross and, therefore, suffer doubly, in body and in soul.
“The senseless man,” the Holy Spirit says, “loves not to be reproved” (Prov 15:12).

To which of these two categories do we belong?
Do we love our cross, or do we carry it patiently, at least?
Anyone who does not want the cross, does not want Jesus.
Let the example of Mary and of the Saints inspire us.
They always bore their burden patiently, they even looked for suffering and humiliation.
If we cannot reach such heroic heights, let us at last, accept, from the hands of Our Lord, the cross which He offers us.
Let us accept the sufferings which we meet on the way of life.
If we are not heroic enough to seek to be unknown and mortified, let us resolve to accept, patiently, the inevitable sorrows of life.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 14 September – My Life is Christ

Thought for the Day – 14 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

My Life is Christ

“St Paul reached such a degree of union with Christ that he could exclaim” “To me to live is Christ” (Phil 1:21).
Elsewhere he says” “It is now no longer I that live but Christ lives in me” (Gal 2:20).
This is a characteristic of the Saints.
They live their own lives no longer, for they live the life of Christ.
That is to say, their minds and hearts are always fixed on Jesus.
They love the Lord, more than all things and, more than themselves.
God is the object of all their desires, affections and actions.
As a result, the soul is transfigured and is infused with divine life, so that it does nothing which is not activated by grace.
In the Saints, then, there is reflected something heavenly which attracts and stimulates one to virtue.

The Saints preached effectively in simple, unadorned language, as in the case of the Cure of Ars.
But, their most effective sermon was the example of their lives.
They could say with St Paul: “To me to live is Christ.”
They could repeat the thought of St Jerome: “Christ is the breath of my lips.”
Like St John Chrysostom, they could say: “My heart is the heart of Christ.”
They could say with St Augustine: “I am only an instrument in the service of Christ” and, with St Anselm: “My eyes are the eyes of Christ.”

When we meditate on these words, which signify the height of sanctity, we feel very small, shabby and far from the Christian perfection to which we should aspire.
Perhaps we are still immersed in sin, or perhaps, we are wavering between the things of this world and the things of God, or perhaps, as yet, we have not given up our egoism and complacent mediocrity in order to offer ourselves entirely to God.
Real Christianity demands that we renounce ourselves, live the life of Christ and, make every effort to acquire perfection.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in GOD is LOVE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 13 September – The Redemption

Thought for the Day – 13 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Redemption

“The Incarnation of God, was sufficient to have saved us.
It would have been enough for God made man, to have offered Himself to God, for our redemption in a single act of love.
Every act of Jesus, the God-Man, had infinite value and was, therefore, sufficient to be offered to the Father as an infinite satisfaction for all our sins.

But, if Jesus had desired to show more clearly His great love for us, He could have offered Hi sufferings as a child in the cold cave at Bethlehem, when He lay whimpering on a wretched straw bed.
He could have offered the sorrow of His exile in Egypt, He could have offered a single drop of His Precious Blood , during the ceremony of the circumcision.
He could have offered the difficulties and privations of His simple working life at Nazareth, or the fatiguing exertions of His apostolic journeys.
All these, would have been more than enough to have made amends to the divine Father for all the sins of humanity, to have ransomed us from the devil and to have restored to us, God’s grace and love.
But in God, everything is infinite.
His love has no limit.
“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God, with thy whole heart,” He as commanded men “and with thy whole soul and with thy whole strength and with they whole mind and thy neighbour as thyself.”
He, Himself, did infinitely more than this, however, Jesus was not satisfied merely to love us, His brothers by adoption, as He loved Himself but, He wished to love us “more than He loved Himself. Greater love than this no-one has,” He said, “that one lay down his life for his friends” (1 Jn 15:13).
This was what he Himself did.
Sinful though we are, He called us friends.
“You are my friends” (Jn 15:14).
Out of love for us, He gave Himself entirely.
He perspired blood in the Garden of Gethsemane, He was betrayed by Judas, denied by Peter and, abandoned by the Apostles, He was bound like a criminal, insulted, scourged, crowned with thorns, condemned to death and burdened with a cross; finally, when He arrived at Calvary, He was nailed to the gibbet, where He shed His Precious Blood and gave His life for our redemption.
Such was the extent of Jesus’ infinite love for us.

“Calvary” writes St Francis de Sales,“is the school of love.”
The Saints were moved to tears by the strange spectacle of God-made-man, dying on the Cross for men.
What is our reaction?”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Thought for the Day – 12 September – The Power of Mary

Thought for the Day – 12 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Power of Mary

“O Mary, my powerful and merciful Mother, my soul is constantly troubled by temptations.
I am standing on the edge of the chasm.
I promise to place myself, at once, under your maternal protection.
Grant that I may never fall into sin again.
Cast your merciful eyes upon me and save me when I am tempted.
Grant that temptations may never again endanger the purity of my soul, by obtaining for me from God, a lively spirit of faith, a burning love fo Him and for you, a constant watchfulness over my senses and over worldly dangers and the gift of fervent and persevering prayer, in union with you and your divine Son, Jesus, Amen.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in GOD is LOVE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SIN, The INCARNATION

Thought for the Day – 11 September – The Incarnation

Thought for the Day – 11 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Incarnation

“By means of the Incarnation, God comes to man so that man may return to God.
God created man by an act of love to display and to diffuse, His infinite goodness.
But this relationship of love was disrupted by sin.
Love became fear, on the part of man and it became justice, on the part of God.

The love of God is infinite, however and cannot decrease.
No sooner had man fallen, than God promised our first parents, that He Himself, would come to save them.
As soon as man had lost the white robe of grace, the Lord mercifully promised that He would come to restore it.
But how?
He could have sent an angel to lead erring man back to the fold and to teach him the way of virtue, which leads to Heaven.
That would have been a great act of love and mercy.
But, an angel is a finite being, whereas, the love of God has no limit.
For this reason, He was not satisfied to send an angel.

We can see, furthermore, another explanation of the great mystery of the Incarnation.
God infinitely loved man, who was the work of His omnipotence.
Precisely because He loved him, He wished to be loved by him in return.
But because the spirit of man is united to matter, he does not see God, except through the works of His creation.
He sees Him, as it were, “through a mirror in an obscure manner,” (1 Cor 13:12) and not face-to-face.
He does not love God, therefore, as he would if he could see Him in all His beauty.
He would need to see Him and to know Him better, before he could love Him more.
So God made Himself small by becoming man.
“Human wisdom often asks,” writes Bossuet, “why God came on earth.”
To this I reply: “He came to be lobed by men.”
“God was great,” writs St Bernard, “so great as to demand to be adored. Now He has become small, so that He may be better loved.”
God became, like us, a child.
“The goodness and kindness of God, our Saviour appeared,” (Titus 2:4) says St Paul.
But Jesus was not satisfied merely to become like us, to enlighten us with His doctrine and to enrich us with the abundance of His graces and gifts.
He also gave Himself to us by dying on the Cross and remaining with us in the Blessed Sacrament.
How could we fail to return such love!?”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in GOD ALONE!, GOD is LOVE, GOD the FATHER, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CREATION, QUOTES on THE VOICE OF GOD, The HOLY SPIRIT

Thought for the Day – 10 September – The Creation

Thought for the Day – 10 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Creation

“God is infinitely perfect in Himself and has, therefore, no need of creatures of His eternal happiness.
He knows Himself fully and this act of knowing, is not transient but substantial and eternal.
It is the perfct image of His own Essence, the Word which expressed His Divine Infinity.

Knowing Himself in the infinite depths of His truth, beauty and goodness, God naturally loves Himself.
This love, also substantial and external, is the Holy Spirit, Who proceeds, not only from the Father but also from the Word, since God loves Himself because He knows Himself perfectly.
The happiness of God, as St Gregory Nazianzen writes, is not a solitary state of beatitude.
He has within Himself, the Word, His consubstantial Son, in Whom is reflected the perfection of His nature and to Whom, He repeats from eternity: “You are my son; this day I have begotten you” (Ps 2:7).
Moreover, in an act equally substantial and infinite, He pours forth His love, the Holy Spirit.
Because, He is infinitely happy and perfect in Himself, God wished to manifest His perfection and to communicate His happiness to others.
According to St Thomas Aquinas, the only reason why God has created, is to manifest His glory and to share His happiness.
Creation is, therefore, an act of love.
“I have loved thee with an everlasting love, therefore, have I drawn thee, taking pity on thee” (Jer 31:3).
“God,” says St Irenaeus, “did not create man because He had need of him but because, He wished to have creatures on whom He could shower His gifts.”
That is why Sacred Scripture tells us that “the Lord has made everything for His own ends” (Prov 16:4).

Turning over these reflections in our minds, we should make an act of profound humility before God and acknowledge that we are nothing without Him.
We should express our deep gratitude to God for our very existence and for all the other gifts with which He has enriched us.

Finally, we should pay Him the tribute of our love, which should be expressed in a practical manner, as well as verbally, by complete and constant fidelity to His commandments.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 9 September – The Two Standards

Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Two Standards

“The well-known meditation of St Ignatius in his Spiritual Exercies on the two standards, remains applicable to our times.
We need only glance at the world to see, that it contains two different kinds of people – the good and the bad, the enemies of Christ and His faithful followers.
But, there is also a third group, those who are indifferent and apathetic, those who think of their own comfort and convenience and of nothing else!
When one considers it, it is plain that those people who think only of themselves – and their number seems to grow every year – belong to the rearguard of those, who fight beneath the banner of Satan.
That man is an enemy of Christ, who has no generosity, no spirit of sacrifice, no desire to combat the evil which threatens to submerge the world.
“He who is not with me, is against me,” (Mt 12:30) said Jesus.
He who thinks only of his own convenience and remains indifferent to the spread of evil, is not worthy of Jesus.
One cannot be indifferent when faced with the alternative between good and evil because, indifference is tantamount to a betrayal.
“The Christian,” writes Tertullian, “is another Christ.”

The fact that we are Christians imposes on us, the obligation to fight openly and courageously under the standard of Christ.
The battle must be waged on two fronts.
On one side, the struggle is internal.
We must resist our rebellious inclinations and self-centred egoism.
At the same time, we must make a constant effort to advance in Christian perfection.
On the second front, the struggle is external.
It is not sufficient to sanctify ourselves but, we must try to sanctify others.
When we consider the sacrifices made in the cause of evil by the enemies of Christ, how can we remain indifferent?
We should work with zeal and with the help of God’s grace, to achieve our own sanctification and the reign of Christ in the universe.
We should examine what we have already done and resolve to be more determined in our future efforts!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in HOLY ORDERS, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on SIN, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS

Thought for the Day – 8 September – The Heart of Judas

Thought for the Day – 8 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Heart of Judas

“The human heart is a mystery, the depths of which, it is difficult to sound.
We do not even understand ourselves.
The heart of man can soar to the loftiest heights of goodness or descend to unimaginable depths of evil.
Examples of the sublime heights to which men can rise, are provided by the lives of the Saints, who loved God so much, that they were on fire with charity and wished to abide forever in Him, “It is now no longer I that live,” said st Paul “but Christ lives in me” (1 Gal 2:20).

The heart of Judas, is a particularly deep mystery.
We read in the Gospel that Jesus called together His disciples in the upper room to celebrate His last Pasch with them.
Among them was Judas.
Jesus loved men so much, that He wished to remain with them, really and truly for all time, even after His approaching death.
“Having loved his own, who were in the world, he loved them to the end” (Jn 13:1).
When the meal was over, Jesus took bread and, lifting up His eyes to Heaven, He said: “Take and eat; this is my body.” Then He took the chalice, blessed it and turning towards the Apostles said these words: “All of you drink of this; for this is my blood of the new covenant, which is being shed for many.”
Then He added: “Do this in remembrance of me.”
In this way, Jesus instituted the Blessed Eucharist, which St Thomas Aquinas describes as Christ’s greatest miracle (Opsculum 57, Officium de festa Corporis Christi).
Furthermore, He raised His disciples, including Judas, to the sublime dignity of the Priesthood and bestowed on them, the power to do what He had just done.
One might say, that the infinite generosity of Jesus Christ, was exhausted at that moment.
He could not give anything more because, at that moment, He had given us Himself!

It was in this solemn moment, in which He received Jesus into his soul and was at the same time raised to the dignity of the Priesthood, that Judas finally decided to carry out his plan to sell his Master for thirty pieces of silver and to hand Him over to those who wished to kill Him.
How sin can degrade a human being!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 7 September – The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree

Thought for the Day – 7 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree

“Today’s subject for meditation is the parable of the barren fig tree in the Gospel of St Luke.
“A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard and he came seeking fruit thereon and found none. And he said to the vine-dresser, ‘Behold, for tree years now, I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and I find none. Cut it down, therefore; why does it still encumber the ground?’ But he answered him and said, ‘Sir, let it alone this year too, till I dig around it and manure it. Perhaps it may bear fruit but, if not, then afterwards thous shalt cut it down'” (Lk 13:6-9).

Perhaps Jesus has come many times to us also, looking for the fruit of our good works and has found none.
Perhaps, He has continued to bestow favours and blessings upon us and, perhaps, He has waited many years for us to correspond with His grace by performing acts of penance and of expiation.

We may have made good resolutions many times but, what became of them?
Temptations of various kinds may have caused us to neglect these resolutions, which remained like branches without any fruit.
We must remember, that although God is infinitely good and merciful, He is also, infinitely just.
The day could come when He might say: “Cut it down. Why does it still encumber the ground?”
In that case, what would become of us?

An episode described in the Gospel of St Mark, should induce serious reflection.
Jesus was walking from Bethany to Jerusalem and grew hungry on the way.
He saw a fig tree beside the road but, on inspection, found that it was barren.
“And He said to it: ‘May no fruit ever come from thee henceforth forever!’
“And immediately, the fig tree withered up.”

His disciples, we are told, were amazed when they saw this happening (Cf Mt 21:18-20).

How terrible, if God should ever pronounce this severe condemnation upon us!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 6 September – “To be Silent, to Adore and to be Happy” Part One

Thought for the Day – 6 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

“To be Silent, to Adore and to be Happy” Part One

“When Rosmini was seriously ill and in danger of death, he was visited by his admirer and friend, Manzoni, who found him in so serious a condition, that he could only breathe with difficulty.
In his shaking hands he clutched a Crucifix.
“Are you suffering much?” Manzoni asked, as he bent over him.
The sick man gazed at his friend and a wan smile passed over his face.
Then the great writer asked him to give him some advice by which he would remember him.
Rosmini looked at his Crucifix and whispered: “Be silent, adore and be happy.”

To be silent:
It is very difficult for a man to remain silent when he is suffering great physical pain or when he is slandered, envied or misunderstood.
On such occasions, one’s blood begins to boil and bitter remarks come easily to the tongue.
But what good does it do?
It may be some relief to our feelings but, usually, it will only make matters worse by aggravating our trouble.
Let us be silent and offer our sufferings to Jesus, Who suffered for us, more than we could ever suffer.
Let us atone for our sins by silently offering our sorrows and disappointments to God.
Any other gift which we give to God is nothing more than restitution for all He has given us; but, when we offer our sufferings, we give Him something which is truly our own because, it is we ourselves, who suffer.
Suffering endured without complain is a most acceptable gift to God, Who grants us, in return, peace and resignation.”

To be continued …

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 5 September – I Am Not Able

Thought for the Day – 5 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

I Am Not Able

“Often, when the violence of our passions threatens to overcome all our powers of resistance, we are tempted to say: “Lord, I am not able; I cannot go any further. Why are You not helping me? Why have you abandoned me?”
This is a trick of the devil, to make us give up the fight, to make us believe, that God has deserted us and that we must, inevitably, give into temptation!

This is the last stratagem of the devil, when he sees that he cannot persuade us in any other manner.
But, the Lord addresses to us, the reproof which he addressed to St Peter, who, when walking on the water, doubted for an instant and then, felt himself going under.
“O thou of little faith, why did thou doubt?” (Mt 14:31).
In such a situation, we must strengthen our faith, our love and our dedication to Jesus Christ.
Then, the Lord will extend His helping hand to us, as He did to Peter.
He will give us the spiritual tranquillity, which only grace and Christian fortitude can offer.

Let us recall how this happened in the temptations in our past life.
When we were strong and generous with Jesus, we implored His help with faith and perseverance and emerged victorious from the fray.
Then, we experienced the heavenly joy which only God can give.
Why can we not always do the same?
We must never say: “I am not able!”
We are poor and weak but, with the grace of God, we can overcome all obstacles.
As St Paul says, “I can do all things in him who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13).”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on INDIFFERENCE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SANCTITY

Thought for the Day – 4 September – Holy Indifference

Thought for the Day – 4 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Holy Indifference

“That is not indifference towards what is good or towards God.
That kind of indifference, is the apathy and negligence which distracts us from striving to reach our final end, by advancing in sanctity.

The holy indifference which we should all have, or endeavour to have, is described by St Ignatius in his book on the Spiritual Exercises.
It is a virtue, which renders us indifferent towards all creatues because, we see them only as means which will help or hinder us on the path to sanctity.
Therefore, we must be indifferent towards sickness and health.

“Grant to me, O Lord,” we should pray, “that which pleases You most.
Perhaps You know, that health could be a grave danger to me, that it could lead me into offending You, or that, at least, it could make me too attached to the things of this world.
If this is so, send me whatever illness You will.
I will accept them from Your hands, as a gift of Your mercy and goodness and I will try to sanctify myself by means of them.
Nature rebels at this thought, yet, I must not listen to the promptings of nature but, to the inspirations of grace.

On the other hand, You may see, that my good health would add to Your glory and help me to grow in sanctity and to be useful in the Apostolate.
Grant health to me, if it is Your will to do so.
I will accept it from Your hands and I will use it, solely for Your glory.”

A man who is capable of such high spirituality, will not be shaken by the fury of human passion but, will remain always calm and attentive to the demands of grace.
He will surrender himself completely to the will of God, in all the circumstances of his life.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 3 September – Falling into Sin

Thought for the Day – 3 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Falling into Sin

“The just man falls seven times,” says the Book of Proverbs (24:16).
Unfortunately, we have all experienced how true this is.
“If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves” (Cf 1 Jn 1:8).

We fall often in many ways – in though, in speech, in action and by omission.
Sometimes, we fall in a moment of weakness or of impatience, at other times, we sin by an act of premediated malice.
“Watch and pray,” Our Lord warns us, “that you may not enter into temptation” (Mt 26:41).

Our Lord also said that we “must always pray and not lose heart” (Lk 18:1).
In other words, we should have a spirit of prayer which is based on the love of God and keeps us close to Him.
It is only when we are united to God, that temptation cannot hurt us and we are protected by His grace, from falling into deliberate sin.

It is idle to protest that this would require the virtue of an achorite and that we are entangled in all kinds of other business.
Virtue is necessary for everybody, not only for anchorites.
“The kingdom of heaven has been enduring violent assault and the violent have been seizing it by force” (Mt 11:12).
In order to attain to the kingdome of God, therefore, we have to do violence to our corrupted nature.
A life of solitude is not essential for prayer, however.
One can be busy from morning till night and pray continuously, so that his work is offered to God and done for the love of God.
In this way, work becomes prayer and will save us from falling into sin.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 2 September – Intimacy with Jesus

Thought for the Day – 2 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Intimacy with Jesus

“In his memoirs written while in exile, Napoleon says: “Many have desired and endeavoured to be obeyed, revered and honoured by all; only Jesus Christ has demanded this because He is God.”

“As the Father has loved me, I also have loved you,” we read in the Gospel of St John.
“Abide in my love” (Jn 15:9).
Jesus, therefore, asks each of us, not only to love Him but, to remain intimately united with Him in love.
He has a perfect right to demand this because, as God, He is our Creator and as God-Man, He is our Redeemer, Who out of love for us has given Himself entirely.

St Francis de Sales writes, that Jesus should always be in our minds, in our hearts, in our eyes and on our tongue.
We should be living images of Jesus and we must, therefore, live and act for Him, with Him and in Him.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL

Thought for the Day – 1 September – The Problem of Evil – Part One

Thought for the Day – 1 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Problem of Evil – Part One

“In his second letter to the Thessalonians, the Apostle Paul speaks of the Anti-Christ, “the man of sin … the son of perdition, who opposes and is exalted above all that is called God…” “Already,” he says, “the mystery of iniquity is at work” (Cf 2 Thess 2:3-7).
From the beginning of the Church’s history until the present time, it has always been the same.

There always have been and always will be, men who do evil, not from human weakness but, from motives of malice, so diabolical as to present something of a mystery to us.
These can be called Anti-Christ because, they seem to be incarnations of the devil, the spirit of iniquity.
They delight in spreading error, in corrupting minds and, in persecuting the Church.
They are steeped in all kinds of baseness and nothing pleases them better, than to succeed in inducing the young and the innocent, to follow them in their sinful ways.
For this purpose, they employ all the advantages of modern technical progress has to offer – the press, the cinema, the radio and television.
In short, they use God’s gifts in their commercialisation of sin, in order to draw souls away from Him.

The realisation of this terrifying fact, provokes two questions.
(1) How can such evil be permitted by God, Who made man for Himself and redeemed him with the Blood of His only-begotten Son?
(2) What steps can we take to control this alarming and unversal deluge of evil?”

To be continued …..

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on PATIENCE

Thought for the Day – 31 August – Patience

Thought for the Day – 31 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Patience

“Patience may be external or internal.
Both are necessary aspects of the same virtue.
External patience consists in refraining from outbursts of anger and from sarcastic comments – in short, from all words and actions which might give offence to others.
It is easy to be patient when our affairs are running smoothly and everybody is being nice to us.
It is quite another matter, when we come up against difficulties or find that we are being slighted or insulted.
It is hard to remain silent when our pride has been wounded and it requires the virtue of a saint to be able to smile at our tormentors.
It took St Francis de Sales years of spiritual conflict before he achieved this kind of perfection.

How far can we claim to have succeeded in acquiring this virtue?
We should always remember that temperamental explosions are unworthy of a rational being.
The only proper course when we have been offended is to state our case clearly and calmly, though generally it is more heroic to remain silent.
Impatience is futile because it cannot remedy the situation and often harmful, because it upsets us and only produces bitterness.
Acts of impatience, moreover, are a source of bad example to others.
“The quick-tempered man,” says Sacred Scripture, “makes a fool of himself” (Prov 14:17).
“The patient man,” it adds,. “shows much good sense but, the quick-tempered man displays folly at it’s height” (Ibid 14:19).

If we live in the presence of God, we shall learn to be calm and self-controlled in all circumstances.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 30 August – Perseverance

Thought for the Day – 30 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Perseverance

“He who has persevered to the end,” Jesus tells us, “will be saved” (Mt 10:22; 24:13).
Elsewhere He says that “no-one, having put his hand to the plough and looking back, is fit for the kingdome of God” (Cf Lk 9:62).
It is necessary, therefore, to persevere in goodness, if we wish to be saved.

It is easy to begin but, it is difficult to continue.
In a moment of fervour, perhaps, you promised to be holy.
Maybe some misfortune came your way, such as the loss of someone very dear to you and you were moved to meditate upon the vanity of earthly things and promised to dedicated yourself entirely to God.
In that moment, you experienced the truth of the words of Ecclesiastes, summarised in The Imitation of Christ: “Vanity of vanities and all is vanity but, to love God and serve Him alone” (Bk 1, c 1:4).

Unfortunately, your good resolutions wore away with time.
You may have been swept away once more by the deceptive pleasures of this world.
Or perhaps, your charity grew cold and in your tepidity, you gave into the violent onslaught of temptation.

Christian perseverance has three main enemies.
(1) Firstly, there is time, which slowly consumes this virtue.
You must conquer time by resolving to begin the battle anew every morning of your life.
(2) Then there is the devil, who goes about, as St Peter warns us, like a lion in search of his prey (Cf 1 Peter 5:8).
You must resist him by the strength of your faith.
(3) Finally, there is spiritual sloth, which easily invades the soul.
You must take your cue from St Paul’s exhortation: “My beloved brethren, be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labour is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor 15:58).

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 29 August – The Interior Life

Thought for the Day – 29 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Interior Life

“Human life is threefold.
First, there is the physical life, that is, the life of the body animated by the soul.
Then, there is the intellectual life, through which the soul searches for truth and controls the powers of the body.
Finally, there is the supernatural life, which leads us towards Christian perfection and unites us to God, the source of goodness and happiness.

These three levels of life are all good in themselves but, form a hierarchy in which the primacy is held by the spiritual life.
Physical life is a gift from God but, must remain subordinate to the spiritual life.
If it were given precedence over reason and over the natural and divine law, our proper scale of values, would be upset and we should fall prey to a host of sinful inclinations.
The same applies to the intellectual life.
God endowed us with intelligence to enable us to know the truth, explore the secrets of the universe and use them for our own welfare.
If the intellect fails to ascend to the knowledge of God from it’s knowledge of worldly objects and ceases to be inspired by a high regard for virtue, it’s achievements can lead eventually to death and destruction.

The supernatural life, which is nourished by divine grace, perfects man.
All our physical powers and spiritual faculties, should be dominated by this life, which Jesus Christ came into the world to bring to us.
We can have this life, if we obey His commands, control our passions, pray fervently, resign ourselves to His will and perform all our actions for love of Him.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 27 August – The Sons of God

Thought for the Day – 27 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Sons of God

“In the beginning of his Gospel, St John speaks of the eternal nature of the Son of God, the Word through Whom all things were created and Who became man to enlighten and redeem the world, which was wallowing in ignorance and sin.
Unfortunately, he adds, instead of welcoming Him, the world rejected Him but, he goes on to say that “to as many as received him, he gave the power of becoming the sons of God” (Cf. John 1:1-12).
These words are a summary of the history of Christianity and, indeed, of the human race, for Jesus Christ was to be a “sign that shall be contradicted” (Lk 2:34).
On our side, there have always been the children of the world, those who ignore or openly combat Christ; on the other, the children of God,the thousands who acknowledge Christ as the Hope of salvation and the Light of the world and adore and love Him as God.

To which side do I belong?
Perhaps I am convinced that I have never attacked or rejected Christ.
But, in effect, I did so every time I committed a deliberate sin, for I put my own caprice before His will.
God’s grace in me was weakened by venial sin, or extinguished altogether by mortal sin.
As a result, I cased to be a child of God and became a child of Satan.
In losing Jesus, I forfeited all real happiness in this world AND in the next!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on FREE WILL, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on INDIFFERENCE, QUOTES on MORTAL SIN, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on VIRTUE

Thought for the Day – 27 August – Those Who Will to be Damned

Thought for the Day – 27 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Those Who Will to be Damned

“There are many who are so steeped in vice that they never think of eternity and seek their happiness in sinful and worldly pleasures.
They have grown deaf to God’s voice, although He instils in them remorse and restlessness and invites them by good inspirations, to return to His merciful embrace.
They are deaf, too, to the voice of conscience, which, in spite of their degradation, cannot fail to make them feel the attractiveness of virtue and their great need of their Creator.
They are fundamentally unhappy, doubly so because, in this life “there is no peace to the wicked” (Is 48:22) and, in the next life, they will be damned forever.
Only a miracle of divine grace can save them from the abyss into which they have voluntarily precipitated themselves.

There are others who want to have their heaven both in this world and in the next.
They oscillate uncertainly, between good and evil, today being full of good resolutions and tomorrow giving way to sin because virtue seems to demand too many sacrifices.
They would like to be good but they will not take the necessary trouble.

Indecisive and lukewarm, they think that they can serve God and the devil at the same time!
Naturally, this is impossible, as Christ has told us, “No man can serve two masters … You cannot serve God and mammon” (Mt 6:24).
If people of this kind will not make up their minds, they are running the risk of eternal damnation.

To what category do you belong?
Think about this and make a firm decision.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on INNOCENCE

Thought for the Day – 26 August – Two Paths to Heaven – Part One

Thought for the Day – 26 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Two Paths to Heaven – Part One

“The first road to Heaven is the way of innocence.
There are some generous souls who preserve, until the end of life, their original baptismal purity.
St Aloysious Gonzaga never ceased to repent of two small faults for which he could hardly be held responsible since he committed them in the ignorance of ealy childhood.
Having lived like an angel in human form, he died with a smile on his lips, murmuring that he was happy to be going to Heaven at last.

In more recent times, there was the lovable boy Saint Dominic Savio.
On the day of his first Holy Communion, he made the resolution “Death rather than sin,” a resolution to which he remained faithful throughout his innocent young life.

Throughout it’s history, the Church could boast of many other members like these, who reflected the absolute purity and perfection of it’s divine Head and Founder.
It should be our desire to possess this innocence, so that we may be pure and holy in the sight of God and may remain always close to Him.
Sin is ugly.
It deprives us of God, our only true good and makes us unhappy because, the sinner can never be at peace.
It makes us restless and remorseful during life and when we come to die, unless God’s mercy intervenes, it causes us to despair of salvation.
Let us jealously guard our state of innocence, keeping it intact by fervent prayer and meditaton.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on PRIDE, QUOTES on SIN

Thought for the Day – 25 August – Pride is Robbery!

Thought for the Day – 25 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Pride is Robbery!

“When we are proud, we steal from God!
Everything which we are and have, both in the natural and supernatural order, is a gift from God.
Therefore, when we claim the credit for ourselves, we take from Him that which really belongs to Him.
“What hast thou that thou hast not received.” asks St Paul. “And if thou has received it, why do thou boast as if thou had not received it?” (1 Cor 4:7).

Pride is a very grave sin, therefore.
According to Sacred Scripture, “pride is the reservoir of sin, a source which runs over with vice” (Ecclus 10:15).
“The beginnong of pride,” says the same Book of Ecclsiasticus, “is man’s stubbornness in withdrawing his heart from his Maker” (10:14).
It is worth meditating on these words, for because of this sin “God sends unheard-of afflictions and brings men to utter ruin” (Ecclus 10:15).
As St Augustine points out, the first sin was one of pride and it changed an angel into a demon. (In Ps 18:15).

When we reflect on the matter, it becomes quite clear, that pride is the basis of every sin (Ibid).
When man disobeys the law of God, he prefers sin to God.
Sin, therefore, is always an act of rebellion against God.
It is as if we were to say to Him: “I prefer to obey my own caprice, rather than to obey Your will.”
In this sense, it is true to state, that every sin is founded on pride and involves a turning away from God.
But, when we turn away from our Creator and Redeemer, where are we to go?
“Lord,” let us say with St Peter, “to whom shall we go? Thou has the words of everlasting life …” (Jn 6:69).”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 24 August – Christian Joy

Thought for the Day – 24 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Christian Joy

“Christianity is neither sad nor pessimistic.
On the contrary, it is the harbinger of “great joy,” (Lk 2:10) to quote the expression used by the Angels when they announced to the shepherds, the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem.

Obviously, this joy is something quite distinct from sensible pleasure.
It is the spiritual happiness which accompanies an innocent life, sorrow for sin, or suffering bravely borne for the love of God.

Any other form of earthly happiess can never be more than a partial and transitory pleasure, capable of satisfying the human heart completely.
When Christianity urges us to be detached from worldly objects, however, it does not condemn the joys of the present life.
The historian Tacitus, was very far from the truth when, in the description in his Annals of the burning of Rome at the time of Nero, he accused the Christians of hating the human race, although not of having set fire to the city.
Although the teaching of Christianity is preoccupied with the joys of Heaven, it does not frown upon legitimate worldly pleasures.

Jesus “went about doing good and healing all who were in the power of the devil” (Acts 10:38).
He loved to give joy to others and sanctified the marriage feast of Cana by His presence and by working His first miracle there.
He restored happiness to the widow of Naim, by raising her son to life and to Martha and Mary, by giving them back their brother, Lazarus, who had been dead for four days.
He spent His entire life giving happiness to others.

There is only one kind of merriment which Christianity cannot countenance and that is, the inordinate pleasure which leads to sin, or, is the result of sin.
This kind of pleasure has no kinship with spiritual joy.
It is a momentary exaltation, which soon disappears and leaves behind disillusionment and remorse.
It leads inevitably to sorrow; this is a chastisement from God which can only become meritorious if it is offered up in expiation.
“The end of joy may be sorrow,” says the Book of Proverbs (14:13)
For this reason, let us seek spiritual joys, not those which lead to sin, nor those, which are the result of sin.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SIN

Thought for the Day – 23 August – The Surest Way to Avoid Sin

Thought for the Day – 23 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Surest Way to Avoid Sin

“The surest way of never offending God, is to love Him.
If we love God sincerely, it will be impossible for us to offend Him.
“Love,” says St Paul, “is the fulfilment of the Law,” (Rom 13:10) and charity “is the bond of perfection” (Col 3:14).
If all our actions are inspired by the love of God, it will not matter how insignificant they are, for they will be pleasing to Him and will gain merit for ourselves.
Then it will be impossible for us to sin.

If most of our actions, on the other hand, are dictated by an inordinate attachment to creatures and to ourselves, they will certainly not lead us to God.
Our hearts need love and cannot live without it.
But whom shall we love if we do not love God, Who is our Creator and Redeemer?
We shall find love or a moment in beauty, in goodness and in pleasure but, it will soon pass away and leave us with empty hearts.
God is our highest good and only He can fully satisfy our hearts.
But He wishes us to belong completely to Himself.

Our hearts are too tiny to be divided between God and creatures.
We must belong entirely to God.
If we love Him sincerely, all created things will form a ladder, which will help us to ascent to Him.
Let us love God and remain united to Him in all our actions.
Then sin will never find it’s way into our souls.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in ARCHangels and Angels, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARIAN TITLES, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUEENSHIP of MARY

Thought for the Day – 22 August – The Crowning of the Blessed Virgin Mary as Queen of Heaven and Earth

Thought for the Day – 22 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Crowning of the Blessed Virgin Mary
as Queen of Heaven and Earth

“When the Virgin Mary was borne into Heaven, soul and body, by the Angels, she was received with great rejoicing by the entire company of the blessed.
A halo of light surrounded her, as her Divine Son, Jesus Christ, placed her on His right hand and proclaimed her Queen of Heaven and Earth.
It was fitting that this supreme dignity should have been accorded her, for she was the beloved daughter of the Eternal Father, the Immaculate spouse of the Holy Spirit and the Mother of God, the Word made man and the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity.

Mary is Queen of the Angels because, even though she is inferior to them, by reason of her human nature, she is superior to them, by reason of her dignity as Mother of God.
What Angel could say to the Incarnate Word: “You are my son?”
What Angel could command Him, as she could, in her role of Mother?

Mary has yet another claim to her title which no Angel could ever have.
She participated in the Passion of her Son Jesus,offering herself along with Him, as a victim of expiation.
She made a contribution, in the supernatural order of the Redemption, which neither Angel nor Saint, could have made.
With Jesus, through Jesus and in Jesus, she is the co-redemptrix of the human race.
Let us bow low before such greatness and join with the choirs of the blessed, in paying homage to her.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DEVOTIO, HOLY COMMUNION, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Thought for the Day – 21 August – Frequent Communion

Thought for the Day – 21 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Frequent Communion

“Even as our bodies need their daily sustenance of good to restore the energy which they have lost, so it is with out souls.
The nourishment of the soul, is the grace of God.
There is no better way of acquiring and increasing this grace, than by Holy Communion because, Communion gives us Jesus Himself, Who is the origin of grace.
Spiritual perfection consists in union with God.
We can achieve perfect union with God in Holy Communion, by means of which, we live the life of Jesus.
“He who eats me, he also shall live because of me.” (Jn 6:58)

Anyone who loves Jesus fervently, receives Holy Communion everyday.
If a man does not do this, it is a sign that he does not love Jesus perfectly.

The early Christians were “continuing daily with one accord in the temple and breaking bread in their houses;” (Cf Acts 2:46) in other words, they received Communion everyday.
It was Jesus, in the Blessed Eucharist Who nourished their faith and gave them the strength to endure martyrdom.
This custom prevailed in many places up to the time of St Jerome and St Augustine, who wrote “This is your daily bread; receive it daily in order to benefit daily from it” (De Verbo Domini, Serm 28).
To those who believe that they were unworthy to receive everyday, St Ambrose said: “A man who is unworthy to receive everyday, will still be unworthy in a year’s time” (Bk 5, De Sacramentis, c 4).

We should not stay away from daily Communion because of our unworthiness, nor because of our lapses into sin.
“Because I am always sinning,” said St Ambrose, “I am always in need of medicine” (Ibid).
Humility is the basic virtue necessary in a Christian but it should not be a reason for abstaining from Holy Communion.
St Thomas Aquinas commented that, although it may be pleasing to God to stay away from Holy Communion out of humility, He is far better pleased with the love and confidence of a soul, which receives Him. (Cf Summa Theologiae, III, q 8, a 10 ad 3).

The Church, like Jesus, desires us to receive Communion daily, although it only binds us under pain of sin to receive once a year during Paschaltide, in accordance with the decree of Innocent III, which was confirmed by the Council of Trent.
We are also required to receive the Blessed Eucharis, if we are in danger of death.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

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Thought for the Day – 20 August – Confidence in the Providence of God

Thought for the Day – 20 August – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Confidence in the Providence of God

“Sometimes we grow discouraged and lose confidence in God.
This may be the result of sickness, or of misfortune, or of misundstanding on the part of others.
At any rate, on such occasions, we may feel as if we have been forgotten by God.

Jesus Christ willed to endure a trial of this nature when He was hanging upon the Cross, derided and jeered at by those whom He had come to redeem.
“My God. my God,” He cried, “why hast thou forsaken me?” (Mt 27:46).
In the Garden of Gethsemane, however, He had already seen, in a terrifying vision, the sins and acts of ingratitude of the human race.
He had begged His Father, to take away from Him, the chalice of suffering which had ben offered to Him but, He had added immediately: “Yet not my will but thine be done” (Lk 22:62).

We must behave in the same manner.
Whether it is a physical or moral anguish which torments us, we must gaze upon the Crucifix and remember that Jesus suffered much more in obedience to the will of His Heavenly Father.
We must never lack confidence in Divine Providence and resignation to the will of God.
In the mysterious designs of God for us, this evil which we experience, is intended for our own good.
It may have been sent to ennoble us or to purify us or to give us an opportunity of making reparation for our sins.

God has endowed suffering with a very purposeful mission n the world.
It should have the effect of making us detached from earthly things and more preoccupied with spiritual matters.
Let us trust in God, then and remember the words of the Holy Spirit: “Has anyone hoped in the Lord and been disappointed?” (Ecclus 2:10).

Antonio Cardinal Bacci