One Minute Reflection – 5 October – Christian joy

One Minute Reflection – 5 October – Saturday of the Twenty Sixth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 10:17–24 and the Memorial of St Faustina Kowalska (1905-1938)

In that same hour he rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said, “I thank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth…” … Luke 10:17in that same hour he rejoiced luke 10 17 5 oct 2019

REFLECTION – “Christian joy is, essentially, a spiritual participation in the boundless joy, at the same time both divine and human, in the heart of Jesus Christ glorified… Let us now pause to contemplate the person of Jesus during His earthly life.   In His humanity, He had experienced our joys.   He has manifestly known, appreciated and celebrated a whole range of human joys, those simple daily joys within the reach of everyone.   The depth of His interior life did not blunt His concrete attitude or His sensitivity.   He admires the birds of heaven, the lilies of   the field. He immediately grasps God’s attitude towards creation at the dawn of history.   He willingly extols the joy of the sower and the harvester, the joy of the man who finds a hidden treasure, the joy of the shepherd who recovers his sheep or of the woman who finds her lost coin, the joy of those invited to the feast, the joy of a marriage celebration, the joy of the father who embraces his son returning from a prodigal life and the joy of the woman who has just brought her child into the world.

For Jesus, these joys are real because for Him they are the signs of the spiritual joys of the kingdom of God, the joy of people who enter this kingdom return there or work there, the joy of the Father who welcomes them.   And for His part Jesus Himself manifests His satisfaction and His tenderness when He meets children wishing to approach Him, a rich young man who is faithful and wants to do more, friends who open their home to Him, like Martha, Mary and Lazarus.   His happiness is, above all, to see the Word accepted, the possessed delivered, a sinful woman or a publican like Zacchaeus converted, a widow taking from her poverty and giving.   He even exults with joy when He states that the little ones have the revelation of the kingdom which remains hidden from the wise and able.   Yes, because Christ was “a man like us in all things but sin,” (PE 4) He accepted and experienced affective and spiritual joys, as a gift of God.   And He did not rest until “to the poor he proclaimed the good news of salvation…and to those in sorrow, joy.”St Paul VI (1897-1978) Pope from 1963-1978Apostolic exhortation on Christian joy ‘Gaudete in Domino’ (PE 4; cf Lk 4:10).christian joy is - st paul vi - gaudete in domino 5 oct 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Lord God, You called St Faustina to serve You in a life of complete communion with Your Son and your people.   Amidst this world’s changes, help us, by her prayers, to set out hearts always on You. Heavenly Father, let me realise that You guide our lives through Your Providence, Your Word, Your Mercy and Sacraments.   Help me to be obedient to the rules for my state in life and so be obedient to Your will for me.   Grant that the prayers of St Faustina may assist us as we strive to grow in humility and in joy! Through our Lord, Jesus Christ, Your Son in union with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever, faustina pray for us 5 oct 2019

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL Apostolic EXHORTATIONS, The WORD

“Sunday of the Word of God” – Apostolic Letter Aperuit Illis

Today, 30 September 2019, the 1600th Anniversary of the death of St Jerome, Pope Francis announced and instated via his Apostolic Letter Aperuit Illis, the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time to be the “Sunday of the Word of God” in order to promote a closer relationship with holy Scripture and its dissemination in the world.

“A day devoted to the Bible should not be seen as a yearly event but, rather, a yearlong event, for we urgently need to grow in our knowledge and love of the Scriptures and of the Risen Lord,”

May the Sunday of the Word of God help his people to grow in religious and intimate familiarity with the sacred Scriptures.   For as the sacred author taught of old:  “This word is very near to you ,it is in your mouth and in your heart for your observance” (Dt 30:14).

Given in Rome, at the Basilica of Saint John Lateran, on 30 September 2019, the liturgical Memorial of Saint Jerome, on the inauguration of the 1600th anniversary of his death.

Apostolic Letter in the form of a Motu Proprio of the Holy Father Francis, “Aperuit illis”, instituting the Sunday of the Word of God, 30.09.2019

sunday of the word of god - 30 sept 2019 1600th ann of the death of st jerome

Posted in Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL Apostolic EXHORTATIONS, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 26 June – Are we bearing good fruit?

One Minute Reflection – 26 June – Wednesday of the Twelfth week in Ordinary Time, Gospel: Matthew 7:15–20

“Every good tree bears good fruit”...Matthew 7:17

REFLECTION – “In a culture paradoxically suffering from anonymity and at the same time obsessed with the details of other people’s lives, shamelessly given over to morbid curiosity, the Church must look more closely and sympathetically at others whenever necessary.   In our world, ordained ministers and other pastoral workers can make present the fragrance of Christ’s closeness and His personal gaze.   The Church will have to initiate everyone – priests, religious and laity – into this “art of accompaniment” which teaches us to remove our sandals before the sacred ground of the other (cf. Ex 3:5).   The pace of this accompaniment must be steady and reassuring, reflecting our closeness and our compassionate gaze which also heals, liberates and encourages growth in the Christian life…

Today more than ever we need men and women who, on the basis of their experieevangeliigaudium169-171,nce of accompanying others, are familiar with processes which call for prudence, understanding, patience and docility to the Spirit, so that they can protect the sheep from wolves who would scatter the flock.   We need to practice the art of listening, which is more than simply hearing.   Listening, in communication, is an openness of heart which makes possible that closeness without which genuine spiritual encounter cannot occur. Listening helps us to find the right gesture and word which shows that we are more than simply bystanders.   Only through such respectful and compassionate listening, can we enter on the paths of true growth and awaken a yearning for the Christian ideal – the desire to respond fully to God’s love and to bring to fruition what He has sown in our lives.”…Pope Francis – Apostolic Exhortation « Evangelii Gaudium / The Joy of the gospel #169-171matthew 7 17 every good tree - only through listening - pope francis evanglii gaudium 69-71.jpg

PRAYER – Enable me loving Father, to live a life of purity that will make me live in You. Let me be so united with You that whatever I might ask will be in total accord with Your will for me.   Bl Jacques Ghazir Haddad, your tireless work and preaching for the glory of the Kingdom show us the way to sanctification, please intercede for us all.   May Mary our Mother of Compassion, be our constant companion.   We make our prayer through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God for all eternity, amen.mater misericordiae mother of merct pray for us 8 april 2019

bl jacques ghazir haddad pray for us 26 june 2919


Marian Thoughts – 5 May – “A Calm Vision”

Marian Thoughts – 5 May – the Month of Mary

Apostolic Exhortation of St Pope Paul VI
Marialis Cultus – 2 February 1974

To Honour Mary

Devotion to the Mother of the Lord becomes for the faithful an opportunity for growing in divine grace and this is the ultimate aim of all pastoral activity.   For it is impossible to honour her who is “full of grace” (Lk. 1:28) without thereby honouring, in oneself, the state of grace, which is friendship with God, communion with Him and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.   It is this divine grace which takes possession of the whole man and conforms him to the image of the Son of God (cf. Rom. 8:29; Col. 1:18).

The Catholic Church, endowed with centuries of experience, recognises in devotion to the Blessed Virgin a powerful aid for man as he strives for fulfilment.   Mary, the New Woman, stands at the side of Christ, the New Man, within whose mystery the mystery of man(124) alone finds true ligh,; she is given to it as a pledge and guarantee that God’s plan in Christ for the salvation of the whole man has already achieved realisation in a creature – in her.   Contemplated in the episodes of the Gospels and in the reality which she already possesses in the City of God, the Blessed Virgin Mary offers a calm vision and a reassuring word to modern man, torn as he often is between anguish and hope, defeated by the sense of his own limitations and assailed by limitless aspirations, troubled in his mind and divided in his heart, uncertain before the riddle of death, oppressed by loneliness while yearning for fellowship, a prey to boredom and disgust. She shows forth the victory of hope over anguish, of fellowship over solitude, of peace over anxiety, of joy and beauty over boredom and disgust, of eternal visions over earthly ones, of life over death.contemplated in the episodes - st paul VI- marilis cultus 5 may 2019.jpg

Let the very words that she spoke to the servants at the marriage feast of Cana, “Do whatever he tells you” (Jn. 2:5), be a seal on our Exhortation and a further reason in favour of the pastoral value of devotion to the Blessed Virgin as a means of leading men to Christ.   Those words, which at first sight were limited to the desire to remedy an embarrassment at the feast, are seen in the context of Saint John’s Gospel to re-echo the words used by the people of Israel to give approval to the Covenant at Sinai (cf. Ex. 19:8, 24:3, 7; Dt. 5:27) and to renew their commitments (cf. Jos. 24:24; Ezr. 10:12; Neh. 5:12). And they are words which harmonise wonderfully with those spoken by the Father at the theophany on Mount Tabor – “Listen to him” (Mt. 17:5

Second Reading
The Little Office of Mary

Mater Admirabilis, Pray for us!mater-admirabilis-pray-for-us-5-may-2019.jpg


Marian Thought – 3 May – “These virtues of the Mother will also adorn her children…”

Marian Thoughts – May, the Month of Mary – 3 May 2019

Apostolic Exhortation of St Pope Paul VI (1897-1978)
Marialis Cultus – 2 February 1974
To Honour Mary

The Blessed Virgin’s role as Mother leads the People of God to turn with filial confidence to her who is ever ready to listen with a mother’s affection and efficacious assistance. Thus the People of God have learned to call on her as the Consoler of the afflicted, the Health of the sick and the Refuge of sinners, that they may find comfort in tribulation, relief in sickness and liberating strength in guilt.

For she, who is free from sin, leads her children to combat sin with energy and resoluteness.   This liberation from sin and evil (cf. Mt. 6:13)-it must be repeated-is the necessary premise for any renewal of Christian living.

The Blessed Virgin’s exemplary holiness encourages the faithful to “raise their eyes to Mary who shines forth before the whole community of the elect as a model of the virtues.”   It is a question of solid, evangelical virtues – faith and the docile acceptance of the Word of God, generous obedience (cf Lk. 1:38), genuine humility (cf. Lk. 1:48), solicitous charity (cf. Lk. 1:39-56), profound wisdom (cf. Lk. 1:29, 34; 2:19, 33:51), worship of God manifested in alacrity in the fulfillment of religious duties (cf. Lk. 2:21-41), in gratitude for gifts received (cf Lk. 1:46-49), in her offering in the Temple (cf. Lk. 2:22-24) and in her prayer in the midst of the apostolic community (cf. Acts 1:12-14), her fortitude in exile (cf. Mt. 2:13-23) and in suffering (cf. Lk. 2:34-35, 49; Jn. 19 25), her poverty reflecting dignity and trust in God (cf. Lk. 1:48, 2:24) her attentive care for her Son, from His humble birth to the ignominy of the cross (cf. Lk. 2:1-7; Jn. 19:25-27), her delicate forethought (cf. Jn. 2:1-11), her virginal purity (cf. Mt. 1:18-25; Lk. 1:26-38), her strong and chaste married love.

These virtues of the Mother will also adorn her children who steadfastly study her example in order to reflect it in their own lives.   And this progress in virtue, will appear as the consequence and the already mature fruit, of that pastoral zeal which springs from devotion to the Blessed Virgin.

Second Reading
The Little Office of Mary
Monday, Wednesday, Friday
=================the blessed virgin's exemplary holiness - marialis cultus stpope paul VI 3 may 2019.jpg


Marian Thoughts – “To Honour Mary” St Paul VI – 2 May 2019

Marian Thoughts – May, the Month of Mary – 2 May 2019

Apostolic Exhortation of St Pope Paul VI (1897-1978) 
Marialis Cultus – 2 February 1974

To Honour Mary

Finally, insofar as it may be necessary, we would like to repeat that the ultimate purpose of devotion to the Blessed Virgin is to glorify God and to lead Christians, to commit themselves, to a life which is in absolute conformity with His will.   When the children of the Church unite their voices, with the voice of the unknown woman, in the Gospel and glorify the Mother of Jesus, by saying to Him:  “Blessed is the womb that bore you and the breasts that you sucked” (Lk. 11:27), they will be led to ponder the Divine Master’s serious reply:  “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!” (Lk. 11:28)   While it is true, that this reply is, in itself, lively praise of Mary, as various Fathers of the Church interpreted it and the Second Vatican Council has confirmed, it is also an admonition to us, to live our lives in accordance with God’s commandments.   It is also an echo of other words of the Saviour:   “Not everyone who says to me ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven” (Mt. 7:21); and again: “You are my friends if you do what I command you” (Jn. 15:14).

Christ is the only way to the Father (cf. Jn. 14:4-11) and the ultimate example to whom the disciple must conform his own conduct (cf. Jn. 13:15), to the extent of sharing Christ’s sentiments (cf. Phil. 2:5), living His life and possessing His Spirit (cf. Gal. 2:20; Rom. 8:10-11).   The Church has always taught this and nothing in pastoral activity should obscure this doctrine.    But the Church, taught by the Holy Spirit and benefiting from centuries of experience, recognises, that devotion to the Blessed Virgin, subordinated to worship of the divine Saviour and in connection with it, also has a great pastoral effectiveness and constitutes, a force, for renewing Christian living.

It is easy to see the reason for this effectiveness.   Mary’s many-sided mission to the People of God is a supernatural reality which operates and bears fruit within the body of the Church.   One finds cause for joy, in considering, the different aspects of this mission and seeing how each of these aspects, with its individual effectiveness, is directed towards the same end, namely, producing in the children the spiritual characteristics of the first-born Son.   The Virgin’s maternal intercession, her exemplary holiness and the divine grace which is in her, become, for the human race, a reason for divine hope.

Second Reading
The Little Office of Mary
Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday
=================the virgin's maternal intercession - st paul VI - marialis cultus 1974-2 may 2019.jpg


One Minute Reflection – 27 April – Go Forth

One Minute Reflection – 27 April – Saturday of Easter week, Gospel: Mark 16:9–15

And he said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation...Mark 16:15

REFLECTION – “Evangelisation takes place in obedience to the missionary mandate of Jesus: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you” (Mt 28:19-20)…  The risen Christ sent His followers to preach the Gospel in every time and place, so that faith in Him might spread to every corner of the earth.

The word of God constantly shows us how God challenges those who believe in Him “to go forth”.   Abraham received the call to set out for a new land (Gen 12:1-3).   Moses heard God’s call:  “Go, I send you” (Ex 3:10) and led the people towards the promised land.   To Jeremiah God says:  “To all whom I send you, you shall go” (Jer 1:7)…   All of us are called to take part in this new missionary “going forth”.   Each Christian and every community must discern the path that the Lord points out but all of us are asked to obey His call to go forth from our own comfort zone in order to reach all the “peripheries” in need of the light of the Gospel.

The Gospel joy which enlivens the community of disciples is a missionary joy.   The seventy-two disciples felt it as they returned from their mission (Lk 10:17).   Jesus felt it when He rejoiced in the Holy Spirit…   This joy is a sign that the Gospel has been proclaimed and is bearing fruit.   Yet the drive to go forth and give, to go out from ourselves, to keep pressing forward in our sowing of the good seed, remains ever present.   The Lord says:  “Let us go on to the next towns that I may preach there also, for that is why I came out” (Mk 1:38)…   In fidelity to the example of the Master, it is vitally important, for the Church today to go forth and preach the Gospel to all – to all places, on all occasions, without hesitation, reluctance or fear.”…Pope Francis – Apostolic Exhortation « The Joy of the Gospel / Evangelii Gaudium » §19-23mark 16 15 go into all the world - in fidelity to the master - pope francis evangeli gaudium 27 april 2019 ester sat.jpg

PRAYER – Lord our God, You increase and multiply Your faithful by Your abundant gift of grace.   Look now on Your chosen people and clothe forever in the garment of eternal life, all those who have been reborn in baptism.   Grant that the intercession of the Blessed Virgin, the saints and angels, may accompany us on our journey.   Through our Lord Jesus and the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.BLESSED VIRGIN MOTHER OF GOD PRAY FOR US.jpg