Posted in CARMELITES, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 4 May – “It is I, be not afraid.”

One Minute Reflection – 4 May – Mary’s Month and a Marian Saturday of the Second Week of Easter,Gospel: John 6:16–21 and the Memorial of St José Maria Rubio y Peralta SJ (1864-1929)

“It is I, be not afraid.”…John 6:20john 6 20 - it is I be not afraid 4 may 2019

REFLECTIONSaint Teresa Benedicta of the Cross [Edith Stein] (1891-1942)
Carmelite, martyr, co-patron of Europe – “At the Helm”

Fierce are the waves, Lord, rough the seas,
And dark, so dark, the night.
I beg of You to grant me, please,
On lonely vigil, light.

Then steer your ship with steady arm,
Trust me and rest your soul.
Your little boat I’ll keep from harm,
I’ll guide it toward its goal.

Be firm of purpose as you keep
The compass e’er in view.
Through stormy night you’ll cross the deep,
’twill help you to steer true.

The needle trembles faintly, then
Holds steady and prevails;
It points your way and guides you when
I, God, direct your sails.

Be therefore steadfast, calm and true,
Your God is at your side.
Through storm and night He’ll see you through
With conscience as your guide.then steer your ship - st teresa benedicta of the cross - 4 may 2019 john 6 20.jpg

PRAYER – Let us praise You Lord, with voice and mind and deed and since life itself is Your gift, may all we have and are, be Yours!   May our Mother be with us and pray for us and listen, we pray, to the prayers of St José Maria Rubio as we ask his intercession. Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, in union with You, one God for all eternity, amen.st jose maria rubio pray for us 4 may 2019

holy-mary-mother-of-god-pray-for-us-sinners-4-may-2018

Posted in CATHOLIC DEVOTIONS of the Month, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MARIAN DEVOTIONS, MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN QUOTES, POETRY, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, YouTube VIDEOS

Thought for the Day – 1 May – Devotion for May – the Month of Mary

Thought for the Day – 1 May – Devotion for May – the Month of Mary

“God wills that all his gifts should come to us through Mary” (St Bernard)

It was in Rome, towards the end of the eighteenth century, one fine evening in May.   A child of the poor gathered his companions around him and led them to a statue of Mary, before which a lamp was burning, as is the custom in that holy city.   There, these fresh young voices sang the Litany of our Lady.   The next day, the little group, followed by other children, again gathered at the feet of the Mother of God. Next came their mothers, to join the little assembly.   Soon, other groups were formed and the devotion rapidly became popular.   Holy souls, troubled by the disorderly conduct which always increases and becomes graver at the return of the pleasant springtime, saw in these growing practices the hand of God and they co-operated with the designs of Providence by approving and promoting this new devotion, as a public and solemn act of reparation. The Month of Mary was founded….A Carthusian, A Month with Mary

“This is the month in which, in the churches and individual homes, the most affectionate and fervent homage of prayers and devotions from the hearts of Christians are raised to Mary.   It is also the month in which from His throne descend upon us the most generous and abundant gifts of the Divine Mercy.”….St Pope Paul VI, The Month of Mary,1967.

In our own times, we Catholics, wanting to be close to her always, offer her special presents in May – pilgrimages, visits to churches dedicated to her, little sacrifices in her honour, periods of study and well-finished work offered up to her and a more attentive recitation of the rosary….may-the-month-of-the-blessed-virgin-mary-1-may-2018

MARY:  THE MOTHER OF GOD
“When the Blessed Virgin said yes, freely, to the plans revealed to her by the Creator, the divine Word assumed a human nature — a rational soul and a body — which was formed in the most pure womb of Mary.   The divine nature and the human were united in a single Person – Jesus Christ, true God and, thenceforth, true man, the only begotten and eternal son of the Father and from that mo­ment on, as man, the true son of Mary.   This is why our Lady is the mother of the Incarnate Word, of the second person of the Blessed Trinity, who has united our human nature to Himself forever, without any confusion of the two natures.   The greatest praise we can give to the Blessed Virgin is to address her loudly and clearly by the name that expresses her very highest dignity: ‘Mother of God’.”

Let us offer to our Mother today:

Brief but frequent prayers of love, such as:

“Mother of God, your petitions are most powerful.”

St Josemaria Escriva – “Mother of God and Our Mother,” Friends of God, 274.

 

May Magnificat
Poem by Fr Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ (1844-1889)

May is Mary’s month and I
Muse at that and wonder why:
Her feasts follow reason,
Dated due to season—

Candlemas, Lady Day
But the Lady Month, May,
Why fasten that upon her,
With a feasting in her honour?

Is it only its being brighter
Than the most are must delight her?
Is it opportunest
And flowers finds soonest?

Ask of her, the mighty mother:
Her reply puts this other
Question: What is Spring?—
Growth in every thing—

Flesh and fleece, fur and feather,
Grass and greenworld all together,
Star-eyed strawberry-breasted
Throstle above her nested

Cluster of bugle blue eggs thin
Forms and warms the life within,
And bird and blossom swell
In sod or sheath or shell.

All things rising, all things sizing
Mary sees, sympathising
With that world of good,
Nature’s motherhood.

Their magnifying of each its kind
With delight calls to mind
How she did in her stored
Magnify the Lord.

Well but there was more than this:
Spring’s universal bliss
Much, had much to say
To offering Mary May.

When drop-of-blood-and-foam-dapple
Bloom lights the orchard-apple
And thicket and thorp are merry
With silver-surfed cherry

And azuring-over greybell makes
Wood banks and brakes wash wet like lakes
And magic cuckoocall
Caps, clears, and clinches all—

This ecstasy all through mothering earth
Tells Mary her mirth till Christ’s birth
To remember and exultation
In God who was her salvation.


 

Posted in POETRY, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, SAINT of the DAY, YouTube VIDEOS

Quote of the Day – Lepanto – 30 April – St Pope Pius V

Quote of the Day – Lepanto – 30 April – Tuesday of the Second week of Easter and the Memorial of St Pope Pius V OP (1504-1572), The Pope of Lepanto

Lepanto
BY G K CHESTERTON (1874-1936)lepanto - by g k chesterton - maxresdefault.jpg

White founts falling in the courts of the sun,
And the Soldan of Byzantium is smiling as they run.
There is laughter like the fountains in that face of all men feared,
It stirs the forest darkness, the darkness of his beard,
It curls the blood-red crescent, the crescent of his lips,
For the inmost sea of all the earth is shaken with his ships.
They have dared the white republics up the capes of Italy,
They have dashed the Adriatic round the Lion of the Sea,
And the Pope has cast his arms abroad for agony and loss,
And called the kings of Christendom for swords about the Cross,
The cold queen of England is looking in the glass.
The shadow of the Valois is yawning at the Mass.
From evening isles fantastical rings faint the Spanish gun,
And the Lord upon the Golden Horn is laughing in the sun.

Dim drums throbbing, in the hills half heard,
Where only on a nameless throne a crownless prince has stirred,
Where, risen from a doubtful seat and half attainted stall,
The last knight of Europe takes weapons from the wall,
The last and lingering troubadour to whom the bird has sung,
That once went singing southward when all the world was young,
In that enormous silence, tiny and unafraid,
Comes up along a winding road the noise of the Crusade.
Strong gongs groaning as the guns boom far,
Don John of Austria is going to the war,
Stiff flags straining in the night-blasts cold
In the gloom black-purple, in the glint old-gold,
Torchlight crimson on the copper kettle-drums,
Then the tuckets, then the trumpets, then the cannon, and he comes.
Don John laughing in the brave beard curled,
Spurning of his stirrups like the thrones of all the world,
Holding his head up for a flag of all the free.
Love-light of Spain—hurrah!
Death-light of Africa!
Don John of Austria
Is riding to the sea.

Mahound is in his paradise above the evening star,
(Don John of Austria is going to the war.)
He moves a mighty turban on the timeless houri’s knees,
His turban that is woven of the sunset and the seas.
He shakes the peacock gardens as he rises from his ease,
And he strides among the tree-tops and is taller than the trees,
And his voice through all the garden is a thunder sent to bring
Black Azrael and Ariel and Ammon on the wing.
Giants and the Genii,
Multiplex of wing and eye,
Whose strong obedience broke the sky
When Solomon was king.

They rush in red and purple from the red clouds of the morn,
From temples where the yellow gods shut up their eyes in scor,
They rise in green robes roaring from the green hells of the sea
Where fallen skies and evil hues and eyeless creatures be,
On them the sea-valves cluster and the grey sea-forests curl,
Splashed with a splendid sickness, the sickness of the pearl,
They swell in sapphire smoke out of the blue cracks of the ground,—
They gather and they wonder and give worship to Mahound.
And he saith, “Break up the mountains where the hermit-folk can hide,
And sift the red and silver sands lest bone of saint abide,
And chase the Giaours flying night and day, not giving rest,
For that which was our trouble comes again out of the west.
We have set the seal of Solomon on all things under sun,
Of knowledge and of sorrow and endurance of things done,
But a noise is in the mountains, in the mountains, and I know
The voice that shook our palaces—four hundred years ago:
It is he that saith not ‘Kismet’; it is he that knows not Fate,
It is Richard, it is Raymond, it is Godfrey in the gate!
It is he whose loss is laughter when he counts the wager worth,
Put down your feet upon him, that our peace be on the earth.”
For he heard drums groaning and he heard guns jar,
(Don John of Austria is going to the war.)
Sudden and still—hurrah!
Bolt from Iberia!
Don John of Austria
Is gone by Alcalar.

St Michael’s on his mountain in the sea-roads of the north
(Don John of Austria is girt and going forth.)
Where the grey seas glitter and the sharp tides shift
And the sea folk labour and the red sails lift.
He shakes his lance of iron and he claps his wings of stone,
The noise is gone through Normandy; the noise is gone alone;
The North is full of tangled things and texts and aching eyes
And dead is all the innocence of anger and surprise,
And Christian killeth Christian in a narrow dusty room,
And Christian dreadeth Christ that hath a newer face of doom,
And Christian hateth Mary that God kissed in Galilee,
But Don John of Austria is riding to the sea.
Don John calling through the blast and the eclipse
Crying with the trumpet, with the trumpet of his lips,
Trumpet that sayeth ha!
Domino gloria!
Don John of Austria
Is shouting to the ships.

King Philip’s in his closet with the Fleece about his neck
(Don John of Austria is armed upon the deck.)
The walls are hung with velvet that is black and soft as sin,
And little dwarfs creep out of it and little dwarfs creep in.
He holds a crystal phial that has colours like the moon,
He touches, and it tingles, and he trembles very soon,
And his face is as a fungus of a leprous white and grey
Like plants in the high houses that are shuttered from the day,
And death is in the phial, and the end of noble work,
But Don John of Austria has fired upon the Turk.
Don John’s hunting, and his hounds have bayed—
Booms away past Italy the rumour of his raid
Gun upon gun, ha! ha!
Gun upon gun, hurrah!
Don John of Austria
Has loosed the cannonade.

The Pope was in his chapel before day or battle broke,
(Don John of Austria is hidden in the smoke.)
The hidden room in man’s house where God sits all the year,
The secret window whence the world looks small and very dear.
He sees as in a mirror on the monstrous twilight sea
The crescent of his cruel ships whose name is mystery.
They fling great shadows foe-wards, making Cross and Castle dark,
They veil the plumèd lions on the galleys of St Mark
And above the ships are palaces of brown, black-bearded chiefs,
And below the ships are prisons, where with multitudinous griefs,
Christian captives sick and sunless, all a labouring race repines
Like a race in sunken cities, like a nation in the mines.
They are lost like slaves that sweat, and in the skies of morning hung
The stair-ways of the tallest gods when tyranny was young.
They are countless, voiceless, hopeless as those fallen or fleeing on
Before the high Kings’ horses in the granite of Babylon.
And many a one grows witless in his quiet room in hell
Where a yellow face looks inward through the lattice of his cell,
And he finds his God forgotten, and he seeks no more a sign—
(But Don John of Austria has burst the battle-line!)
Don John pounding from the slaughter-painted poop,
Purpling all the ocean like a bloody pirate’s sloop,
Scarlet running over on the silvers and the golds,
Breaking of the hatches up and bursting of the holds,
Thronging of the thousands up that labour under sea
White for bliss and blind for sun and stunned for liberty.
Vivat Hispania!
Domino Gloria!
Don John of Austria
Has set his people free!

Cervantes on his galley sets the sword back in the sheath
(Don John of Austria rides homeward with a wreath.)
And he sees across a weary land a straggling road in Spain,
Up which a lean and foolish knight forever rides in vain,
And he smiles, but not as Sultans smile and settles back the blade….
(But Don John of Austria rides home from the Crusade.)

St Pope Pius V, Pray for Us!st pope pius v pray for us 30 april 2019.jpg

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MARIAN TITLES, POETRY, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 30 April – My heart has become Your manger

One Minute Reflection – 30 April – Tuesday of the Second week of Easter and the Feast of Our Lady, Mother of Africa (1840) and the Memorial of St Pope Pius V OP (1504-1572), The Pope of Lepanto

“…So that everyone who believes, may have eternal life in him”…John 3:15jesus and nicodemus john 3 15 everyone who believes may have eternal life in him 30april2019.jpg

REFLECTION –
“My Lord, God,
You have led me by a long, dark path,
Rocky and hard.
Often my strength threatened to fail me.
I almost lost all hope of seeing the light.
But when my heart grew numb with deepest grief,
A clear star rose for me.
Steadfast it guided me- I followed,
At first reluctant, but more confidently later.

At last I stood at Church’s gate.
It opened. I sought admission.
From Your priest’s mouth Your blessing greets me.
Within me stars are strung like pearls.
Red blossom stars show me the path to You.
They wait for You at Holy Night.
But Your goodness
Allows them to illuminate my path to You.
They lead me on.
The secret which I had to keep in hiding
Deep in my heart,
Now I can shout it out:
I believe-I profess!
The priest accompanies me to the altar:
I bend my face-
Holy water flows over my head.

Lord, is it possible that someone who is past
Midlife can be reborn (Jn 3:4)?
You said so and for me it was fulfilled,
A long life’s burden of guilt and suffering
Fell away from me.
Erect I receive the white cloak,
Which they place round my shoulders,
Radiant image of purity!
In my hand I hold a candle.
Its flame makes known
That deep within me glows Your holy life.

My heart has become Your manger,
Awaiting You,
But not for long!
Maria, Your mother and also mine
Has given me her name.
At midnight she will place her newborn child
Into my heart.

Ah, no-one’s heart can fathom,
What You’ve in store for those who love You (1Cor 2:9).
Now You are mine and I won’t let You go.
Wherever my life’s road may lead,
You are with me.
Nothing can ever part me from Your love (Rm 8:39).”

St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross [Edith Stein] OCD (1891-1942) Martyrah no-ones heart can fathom - st teresa benedicta 30 april 2019.jpg

PRAYER – True Light of the world, Lord Jesus Christ, as You enlighten all men for their salvation, give us grace, we pray, to herald Your coming, by preparing the ways of justice and of peace.   May the intercession of Your Mother and our Mother of Africa and St Pope Pius V, assist us on our journey to You.   Who live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, God, forever and ever, amen.our lady mother of africa pray for us 30 april 2019

st pope pius V pray for us - 30 april 2019

Posted in Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, CONFESSION/PENANCE, DIVINE MERCY, EASTER, HYMNS, Our MORNING Offering, POETRY, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning Offering – 30 April – Be Merciful, Be Gracious

Our Morning Offering – 30 April – Tuesday of the Second week of Easter

Be Merciful, Be Gracious
By Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

Be merciful, be gracious, Lord, deliver me.
From the sins that are past,
From Your frown and Your ire,
From the perils of dying,
From any complying
With sin or denying
My God, or relying
On self,
at the last,
From the nethermost fire,
From all that is evil,
From the power of the devil,
Your servant deliver,
For once and forever,
By Your Birth and By Your Cross,
Rescue me from endless loss,
By Your death and burial,
Save me from a final fall,
By Your rising from the tomb,
By Your mounting up above,
By the Spirit’s gracious love,
Save me in the day of doom.

Amenbe merciful be gracious - bl john henry newman 30 april 2019.jpg

Posted in EASTER, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The RESURRECTION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 22 April – And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Hail!”

One Minute Reflection – 22 April – Monday of Easter Week, Gospel: Matthew 28:8–15

And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Hail!”...Matthew 28:9

REFLECTION –
At dawn you were mourned
By women bearing spices,
Grant that my heart may also shed
Tears of fire for your burning love.

By grace of the angel’s tidings
Shouted from the pinnacle of the rock (Mt 28,2),
Let me hear the last trumpet sound
Proclaiming the resurrection.

With your body born of a Virgin
You were raised from a tomb, virgin and new,
You became for us the first-fruits
And firstborn from the dead

As for me, bound by the Foe
With the evil of bodily sin,
Set me free once more
As you have freed souls in the dwelling of the dead (1Pt 3:19).

You revealed yourself in the garden
To Mary Magdalene,
But have not consented to approach
One who is yet part of a fallen race.

Show yourself also to me on the eighth day,
At the great and final dawn
And graciously grant my unworthy soul
To draw near you at that time.

St Nerses Chnorhali (1102-1173)
Armenian Catholic Patriarchmatthew 28 9 and behold jesus mets them and said Hail - 22 april 2019 easter monday St Nerses Chnorhali (1102-1173)Armenian Catholic Patriarch.jpg

PRAYER – Lord God, grant that Your people may hold fast in life to the mystery of new birth, which they received in faith. May Your glorified Son, Jesus our Hope, who broke the power of hell, destroying sin and death, stay ever with us in our struggles against temptation and guide our steps along the path that leads to a holy earthly end and to You in everlasting life. Mary, holy Mother, please help your children. Through Jesus Christ Our Lord, Who lives and reigns with God The Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, forever and ever. Amenredemptoris mater pray for us 22 april 2019.jpg

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2019, POETRY, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The PASSION, The WORD

Lenten Reflection – 12 April

Lenten Reflection – 12 April – Friday of the Fifth Week, Year C

The Readings:
Jeremiah 20:10-13; Psalms 18:2-3A, 3BC-4, 5-6, 7; John 10:31-42

Again they tried to arrest him
but he escaped from their hands...John 10:39fridayofthefifthweeklent john 10 39 again they tried to arrest him 12 april 2019.jpg

Odes of Solomon
(Hebrew Christian text from
the beginning of the 2nd century)
No. 28

As the wings of doves over their nestlings…
So also are the wings of the Spirit over my heart.
My heart continually refreshes itself and leaps for joy
Like the babe who leaps for joy in his mother’s womb.

I trusted, consequently I was at rest;
because trustful is he in whom I trusted.
He has greatly blessed me, and my head is with him.
And the dagger shall not divide me from him,
nor the sword .

Because I am ready before destruction comes,
and have been placed in his incorruptible arms.
And immortal life embraced me and kissed me.
And from that (life) is the Spirit which is within me.
And it cannot die because it is life.

[Christ speaks:]
Those who saw me were amazed,
because I was persecuted.
And they thought that I had been swallowed up,
because I appeared to them as one of the lost.
But my defamation became my salvation.

And I became their abomination,
because there was no jealousy in me.
Because I continually did good to every man
I was hated.
And they surrounded me like mad dogs (Ps 22[21]:17)
those who in stupidity attack their masters.
Because their mind is depraved and their sense is perverted.

But I was carrying water in my right hand,
and their bitterness I endured by my sweetness.
And I did not perish, because I was not their brother,
nor was my birth like theirs.
And they sought my death but were unsuccessful
because I was older than their memory.

And in vain did they cast their lots against me.
And those who were after me
Sought in vain to destroy the memorial of him
Who was before them.
Because the mind of the Most High cannot be surpassed
And his heart is superior to all wisdom.
Hallelujah!and I became their abomination - odes of solomon - fridayfifthweeklent 12 april 2019.jpg

Daily Meditation:
Set us free.
On this Friday before Good Friday,
it might be most appropriate to make the Stations.
Our desire is becoming more focused and more intense.
After our weeks of reflection, we know that our selfishness has placed us in ruts,
has made us slaves to some very unhappy and sometimes death-dealing patterns.
The celebration of our freedom and healing is close at hand.

Jesus carried our sins in his own body on the cross
so that we could die to sin and live in holiness;
by his wounds we have been healed.
The Communion Antiphon – 1 Peter 2:24

Closing Prayer:
Most forgiving Lord,
again and again You welcome me back into Your loving arms.
Grant me freedom from the heavy burdens of sin
that weigh me down
and keep me so far from You.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.

Posted in LENT 2019, Our MORNING Offering, POETRY, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE

Our Morning Offering – 12 April – Love

Our Morning Offering – 12 April – Friday of the Fifth Week, Year C

Love
By George Herbert (1593 – 1633)

Love bade me welcome
yet my soul drew back,
guilty of dust and sin.
But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning
If I lacked anything.
“A guest,” I answered, “worthy to be here”
Love said, “You shall be he.”
“I, the unkind, ungrateful?   Ah, my dear,
I cannot look on thee.”
Love took my hand and smiling did reply,
“Who made the eyes but I?”
“Truth, Lord but I have marred them, let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.”
“And know you not,” says Love, “who bore the blame?”
“My dear, then I will serve.”
“You must sit down,” says Love “and taste my meat.”
So I did sit and eat.

Amen amenLOVE BY george herbert 12 april 2019 -poem prayer.jpg

Posted in DIVINE MERCY, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT 2019, LENTEN THOUGHTS, POETRY, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on REPENTANCE

Lenten Thoughts – 5 April ‘ But You God”

Lenten Thoughts – 5 April – Friday of the Fourth Week of Lent, Year C

And now, my heavy laden soul,
what will you do?
You call with your lips and voice to
God most high,
God, who cares only for deeds and
is not taken in by words.
You, my soul, with a heart always turned toward Egypt,
how can I describe you?

Am I
a Sodom, to be punished likewise with destruction,
or the prosecutor of Ninevah, who was struck dumb?

Am I
more cowardly and barbarous than the
queen of the south,
lower than Canaan,
more stubborn than Amalek,
incurable as the city of idols,
a relic left behind from the rebellion of Israel,
a reminder of the broken covenant of Judah,
more reproachable than Tyre,
more shunned than Zidon,
more immoral than Galilee,
more unpardonable than faithless Capernaum,
maligned like Korazin,
slandered like Bethsaida?

Or am I
immodest as Ephraim as he prayed,
or a dove, whose gentleness seems due to
feeblemindedness and not to inner calm,
or an evil serpent born of lion’s cubs,
or the serpent’s egg filled with decay,
or like the last blow against Jerusalem?

Or am I
in the words of our Lord
and the sayings of the prophets,
an abandoned tabernacle about to collapse,
the unlatched doors of the stronghold,
my speaking edifice stained again,
having given up my rightful inheritance,
my home built by God,
as Moses, David and Jeremiah prophesied?
My thinking body now consumed by disease,
afflicted with carping counsel, rehabilitated by the law,
anointed with the clay of mildness,
incapable of finding my own salvation,
torn away from the maker’s hand,
expelled as just punishment
by order of the Almighty, to an unholy place,
rejected, exiled, greatly shunned, nothing spared,
having buried my gift in the ground,
like the one chastised in the Gospel by
losing his inheritance.

But You, God,
Lord of souls and all flesh,
in the words of one divinely graced,
You are long-suffering and abounding in mercy.
In the voice of blessed Jonah,
grant that I finish to Your delight
this book of prayers, now begun.
And having sown these words with tears
and set forth on this journey toward the dwellings You have prepared,
may I return joyfully in the time of harvest
with the bounty of atonement,
with sheaves of goodness and the fruits of delight.

St Gregory of Narek (950-1003) – Fathe & Doctor of the Churchbut-you-god-st-gregory-of-narek-27-feb-2018.jpg

“If you elevate yourself,
God distances Himself from you.
If you humble yourself,
He leans towards you.”

St Augustine (354-430)if you elevate yourself - st augustine - 5 april 2019.jpg

Posted in Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, LENT 2019, POETRY, PRAYERS for SEASONS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The TRANSFIGURATION, The WORD

Lenten Reflection – 17 March – Transfiguration

Lenten Reflection – 17 March – The Second Sunday of Lent, Year C

The Readings
Genesis 15:5-12,17-18; Psalms 27:1, 7-8, 8-9, 13-14; Philippians 3:17 – 4:1 or Philippians 3:20 – 4:1; Luke 9:28B-36

And a voice came out of the cloud, saying,
“This is my Son, my Chosen,
listen to him!”
Luke 9:35

Transfiguration
By Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

They were talking to Him about resurrection,
about law, about the suffering ahead.
They were talking as if to remind Him who He was and
who they were. He was not

Like his three friends watching a little way off,
not like the crowd At the foot of the hill.
A grey-green thunderhead massed
from the sea

And God spoke from it and said He was His.
They were talking about how the body, broken or
burned,
could live again, remade.

Only the fiery text of the thunderhead could explain it.
And they were talking
About pain and the need for judgement
and how He would make Himself

A law of pain, both its spirit and its letter in His own
flesh,
and then break it,
That is, transcend it.
His clothes flared like magnesium

transfiguration-by-bl-john-henry-newman-2nd-sun-lent-25-feb-2018.jpg

Daily Meditation:
Listen to Him.

It is wonderful to begin this week
acknowledging that we need God’s help in listening and hearing.
It is so powerful to ask for the “gift of integrity” –
to express our desire for wholeness.
And, we humbly ask for light in the midst of whatever
might “shadow our vision.”
This is the God who allows Jesus
to be transfigured before His disciples,
to prepare them for what they were about to face.
This is our God, who can give each of us
the change of heart we ask for.

Wait for the Lord,
be strong
and let your heart take courage,
yea, wait for the Lord!

Psalm 27:14

Closing Prayer:

Loving God,
there is so much darkness in my life
and I hide from You.
Take my hand
and lead me out of the shadows of my fear.
Help me to change my heart.
Bring me to your truth
and help me to respond to Your generous love.
Let me recognise the fullness of Your love
which will fill my life.
Free me from the darkness in my heart.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amensecond-sunday-lenten-reflection-luke 9 35 17 march 2019

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, POETRY, SAINT of the DAY, YouTube VIDEOS

Saint of the Day – 11 February – St Caedmon (Died c 680)

Saint of the Day – 11 February – St Caedmon (Died c 680) is the earliest English (Northumbrian) poet whose name is known.   An Anglo-Saxon who cared for the animals at the double monastery of Streonæshalch (Whitby Abbey, in Yorkshire, England) during the abbacy (657–680) of the Founder, St Hilda (614–680), he was originally ignorant of “the art of song” but learned to compose one night in the course of a dream, according to the 8th-century historian and Saint, The Venerable St Bede (673-735) Father & Doctor of the Church.   He later became a zealous monk and an accomplished and inspirational Christian poet.caed4.jpg

The sole source of original information about Cædmon’s life and work is St Bede’s Historia ecclesiastica.    According to Bede, Cædmon was a lay brother who cared for the animals at the monastery Streonæshalch, now known as Whitby Abbey.   One evening, while the monks were feasting, singing and playing a harp, Cædmon left early to sleep with the animals because he knew no songs.   The impression clearly given by St Bede is that he lacked the knowledge of how to compose the lyrics to songs.   While asleep, he had a dream in which “someone” approached him and asked him to sing principium creaturarum, “the beginning of created things.”   After first refusing to sing, Cædmon subsequently produced a short eulogistic poem praising God, the Creator of heaven and earth.

Upon awakening the next morning, Cædmon remembered everything he had sung and added additional lines to his poem.   He told his foreman about his dream and gift and was taken immediately to see the abbess, St Hilda of Whitby.   The abbess and her counsellors asked Cædmon about his vision and, satisfied that it was a gift from God, gave him a new commission, this time for a poem based on “a passage of sacred history or doctrine”, by way of a test.   When Cædmon returned the next morning with the requested poem, he was invited to take monastic vows.   The abbess ordered her scholars to teach Cædmon sacred history and doctrine, which after a night of thought, Bede records, Cædmon would turn into the most beautiful verse.   According to Bede, Cædmon was responsible for a large number of splendid vernacular poetic texts on a variety of Christian topics.saint-hilda-of-whitby-anglo-saxon-abbess-receiving-a-visit-from-caedmon_u-l-otenj0st-hilda-whitby-abbey

After a long and zealously pious life, Cædmon died like a saint – receiving a premonition of death, he asked to be moved to the abbey’s hospice for the terminally ill where, having gathered his friends around him, he died after receiving the Holy Eucharist, just before nocturns.st caedmon.jpg

Bede’s narrative shows that Bede, an educated and intelligent man, believed Cædmon to be an important figure in the history of English intellectual and religious life.   He, however, gives no specific dates in his story.   Cædmon is said to have taken holy orders at an advanced age and it is implied that he lived at Whitby, at least in part, during Hilda’s abbacy (657–680).  caedmon and hilda.JPG

Cædmon is one of twelve Anglo-Saxon poets identified in medieval sources and one of only three of these for whom both roughly contemporary biographical information and examples of literary output have survived.   St Bede wrote, “there was in the Monastery of this Abbess a certain brother particularly remarkable for the Grace of God, who was wont to make religious verses, so that whatever was interpreted to him out of scripture, he soon after put the same into poetical expressions of much sweetness and humility in Old English, which was his native language.   By his verse the minds of many were often excited to despise the world and to aspire to heaven.”

Cædmon’s only known surviving work is Cædmon’s Hymn, the nine-line alliterative vernacular praise poem in honour of God which he learned to sing in his initial dream. The poem is one of the earliest attested examples of Old English and is one of the earliest recorded examples of sustained poetry in a Germanic language.   In 1898, St Cædmon’s Cross was erected in his honour in the graveyard of St Mary’s Church in Whitby.

caedmons-cross-1x1.jpg
St Caedmon’s Cross

St Bede’s Latin version of St Caedmon’s poem runs as follows:

Nunc laudare debemus auctorem regni caelestis,
potentiam creatoris,
et consilium illius facta Patris gloriae –
quomodo ille,
cum sit aeternus Deus,
omnium miraculorum auctor exstitit,
qui primo filiis hominum caelum
pro culmine tecti dehinc terram
custos humani generis
omnipotens creavit.

Now we must praise the author
of the heavenly realm,
the might of the creator
and His purpose,
the work of the Father of glory –
as He, who, the almighty guardian
of the human race,
is the eternal God,
is the author of all miracles,
who first created the heavens
as highest roof
For the children of men,
then the earth.

caedmon_caedmon_cross

Posted in Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, HYMNS, Our MORNING Offering, POETRY, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, St PAUL!

Our Morning Offering – 25 January – The Feast of the Conversion of St Paul

Our Morning Offering – 25 January – The Feast of the Conversion of St Paul

Lead, Kindly Light
By Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

Lead, kindly Light, amid the encircling gloom,
Lead Thou me on;
The night is dark and I am far from home,
Lead Thou me on.
Keep Thou my feet, I do not ask to see
The distant scene, one step enough for me.

I was not ever thus, nor prayed that Thou
Should lead me on.
I loved to choose and see my path but now
Lead Thou me on.
I loved the garish day and, spite of fears,
Pride ruled my wil, remember not past years.

So long Thy power has blest me, sure it still
Will lead me on
O’er moor and fen, o’er crag and torrent, till
The night is gone
And with the morn those Angel faces smile,
Which I have loved long since and lost awhile.

Lead, Kindly Light is a hymn with words written in 1833 by Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890) as a poem titled “the Pillar and the Cloud” – it consists of 3 verses, anything after that is not by John Henry.

As a young priest, Newman became sick while in Italy and was unable to travel for almost three weeks. In his own words:
“Before starting from my inn, I sat down on my bed and began to sob bitterly.   My servant, who had acted as my nurse, asked what ailed me.   I could only answer, “I have a work to do in England.”   I was aching to get home, yet for want of a vessel I was kept at Palermo for three weeks.   I began to visit the churches and they calmed my impatience, though I did not attend any services.   At last I got off in an orange boat, bound for Marseilles.   We were becalmed for whole week in the Straits of Bonifacio and it was there that I wrote the lines, Lead, Kindly Light, which have since become so well known.”

Why this for St Paul? – this time in Bl John Henry’s life was a time of internal “conversion’ – after, his well-known “Sicily providential illness”, he started to turn towards “Rome” – although first the Oxford Movement had to happen and then some more difficult years before his final conversion but once he had put his hand to the plough, there was no turning back in his journey towards Truth.

I am sure you will agree with me that the words of this most beautiful prayer/poem/hymn, fit the Feast of the Conversion of St Paul perfectly.Lead Kindly Light Bl john henry newman 25 jan2019 for the conv of st paul.jpg

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, POETRY, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on MARTYRDOM, SAINT of the DAY, SPEAKING of ....., The CHRIST CHILD, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The PASSION

Thought for the Day – 21 January – The Burning Babe

Thought for the Day – 21 January – Monday of the Second week in Ordinary Time –  and The Memorial of St Agnes (c 291- c 304) Virgin and Martyr

Seeing as it is the Memorial of St Agnes and we are thinking about martyrdom, I have included the post below, which is an excerpt from my post on St Robert Southwell’s Memorial – 21 February.    It is talk by Servant of God, Fr John A Hardon SJ (1914-2000) (a hero!).   If you wish to read the whole post, it is here:  https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/21/saint-of-the-day-21-february-st-robert-southwell-s-j-1561-1595-martyr/

“There are two books, prose writings, that Robert Southwell wrote that are worth reading.   They are of course written in 16th century English but, powerful, written to encourage his fellow Catholics to remain firm in their faith.   The one is called ‘Mary Magdalene’s Funeral Tears’.   And the other one is called ‘Epistle of Comfort‘.   We would probably call it a letter of encouragement.   

His poetry – we don’t know exactly when he began to write but it must have been very young because he wrote a great deal of which we have the record and by now the English speaking world knows Robert Southwell.   His two outstanding poems are ‘The Burning Babe’ and ‘The Virgin Mary to Christ On The Cross.’”

The Burning Babe, by St Robert Southwell SJ (1561-1595) Martyr

As I in hoary winter’s night stood shivering in the snow,
Surprised I was with sudden heat which made my heart to glow;
And lifting up a fearful eye to view what fire was near,
A pretty babe all burning bright did in the air appear;
Who, scorchëd with excessive heat, such floods of tears did shed
As though his floods should quench his flames which with his tears were fed.
Alas, quoth he, but newly born in fiery heats I fry,
Yet none approach to warm their hearts or feel my fire but I!
My faultless breast the furnace is, the fuel wounding thorns,
Love is the fire, and sighs the smoke, the ashes shame and scorns;
The fuel justice layeth on, and mercy blows the coals,
The metal in this furnace wrought are men’s defiled souls,
For which, as now on fire I am to work them to their good,
So will I melt into a bath to wash them in my blood.
With this he vanished out of sight and swiftly shrunk away,
And straight I called unto mind that it was Christmas day.

It’s not surprising, it’s one of the great poems of the English language.burning babe excerpt - st robert southwell - mem 21 feb - 21 jan 2019 on martyrdom mem of st agnes

St Agnes, Pray for Us!bernardo-lorente-german-sevilla-1680-sevilla-1759-e2809csaint-agnese2809d-pray-for-us

St Robert Southwell, Pray for Us!st robert southwell - pray for us - 21 feb 2018

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, DOCTORS of the Church, NOTES to Followers, POETRY, The CHRIST CHILD, The NATIVITY of JESUS

A Blessed and Holy Christmas to you all!

A Blessed and Holy Christmas to you all!
St John of the Cross will help us to truly appreciate this great Feast.my-christmas-wishes.2017

Romance on the Birth of Christ
By St John of the Cross (1542-1591) Doctor of the Church

Now at last the destined ages
Their appointed course had run,
When rejoicing from His chamber
Issued forth the Bridegroom Son.

He embraced His bride, and held her
Lovingly upon His breast,
And the gracious Mother laid Him
In the manger down to rest.

There He lay, the dumb beasts by Him,
They were fitly stabled there,
While the shepherds and the angels
Filled with melody the air.

So the feast of their espousals
With solemnity was kept
But Almighty God, an Infant,
In the manger moaned and wept.

So the bride at her betrothal
Did the bridal gifts arrange
But the Mother looked in wonder
At the marvellous exchange.

Man gave forth a song of gladness,
God Himself a plaintive moan,
Both possessing that which never
Had been hitherto their own.

romance on the birth of christ st john of the cross -24 dec 2018

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, CHRISTMASTIDE!, HYMNS, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The CHRIST CHILD, The NATIVITY of JESUS

Thought for the Day – 24 December – Today, the 200th anniversary of the first performance of the beloved carol ‘Silent Night’

Thought for the Day – 24 December

Today, the 200th anniversary of the first performance

of the beloved carol ‘Silent Night’

Exactly 200 years ago today, 24 December 1818 — in a little church in what is now Austria, the world heard for the first time a poem set to music that eventually would be hailed as one of the most popular and beloved Christmas carols of all time.

“Silent Night” was sung for the first time that Christmas Eve at a Midnight Mass at St Nicholas Church in Oberndorf, a village in the Austrian Empire.   The lyrics were written by a young Catholic priest, Father Joseph Mohr (1792–1848) and the music was composed by his friend, the local organist and schoolmaster, Francis Xavier Gruber (1787–1863).1024px-Stille_Nacht_Kapelle_Glasfenster_Josef_Mohr

Silent night, holy night!
All is calm, all is bright,
Round yon Virgin Mother and Child!
Holy Infant so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace.

Silent night, holy night!
Son of God, how the light
Radiates love from Thy heavenly face,
At the dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus, Lord at Thy birth,
Jesus, Lord at Thy birth.Silent Night by Fr Joseph Mohr 1792-1848 24 dec 2018

Fr Joseph Mohr’s final resting place is a tiny Alpine ski resort, Wagrain.   He was born into poverty in Salzburg in 1792 and died penniless in Wagrain in 1848, where he had been assigned as pastor of the church.   He had donated all his earnings to be used for elder care and the education of the children in the area.   His memorial from the townspeople is the Joseph Mohr School located a dozen yards from his grave.   The overseer of St Johann’s, in a report to the bishop, described Mohr as “a reliable friend of mankind, toward the poor, a gentle, helping father.”

Many generations of the Mohr family lived in the Lungau region, in the southern part of the Province of Salzburg.   The pilgrimage church of St Nicholas in Mariapfarr, the little church where Father Mohr was the curate, is within walking distance of the former home of Joseph’s grandfather.   The climate is so invigorating and the Alpine air so clean, the town has become a major vacation destination for Europeans who want to get away from city life.   The pilgrimage church where Mohr celebrated Mass is undergoing the restoration of its centuries-old frescos.

The carol is believed to have caused a somewhat miraculous and well-documented Christmas truce during World War I.   On Christmas Eve 1914, British and French troops were encamped in trenches in a face-off against German troops in Ypres in Flanders, Belgium.   The two sides began singing Christmas carols to each other and “Silent Night” was the only hymn all the combatants knew.   Singing it together broke the ice and led to a temporary cease-fire with soldiers from both sides meeting in the middle “No Man’s Land” to trade tobacco and candy, play soccer and sing carols.

An early copy of Silent Night written by Joseph Mohr

As it marks its 200th anniversary, “Silent Night” remains as beloved as ever.   I am sure that all of us who attend Midnight Mass tonight, wherever we are in the world, will be singing Silent Night in one of the 300 languages into which it has been translated.

May this Holy Infant so tender and mild, bless us all!Holy infant so tender and mile bless us all 24 dec 2018

Posted in ADVENT, Our MORNING Offering, POETRY

Our Morning Offering – The Third Sunday of Advent – 16 December 2018

Our Morning Offering – The Third Sunday of Advent – 16 December 2018

How Beautiful
By Daryl Madden

How beautiful
Your light this day
Reflection of
Colours arrayed

How beautiful
Your precious gift
Our daily bread
The soul to lift

How beautiful
Your living Word
Let soul be lead
By Spirit heard

How beautiful
Your blessed grace
Our gift, Your light
Souls to embrace

By courtesy of the Poet Daryl Madden

https://darylmadden.wordpress.com/2018/12/15/how-beautiful/comment-page-1/#comment-3319how beautiful poem prayer by daryl madden 16 dec 2018

Posted in IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, POETRY, PRAYERS to the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HUMILITY, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 31 October – The Memorial of St Alphonsus Rodriguez SJ (1532-1617)

Quote/s of the Day – 31 October –

The Memorial of St Alphonsus Rodriguez SJ (1532-1617)

“In the difficulties which are placed before me,
why should I not act like a donkey?
When one speaks ill of him – the donkey says nothing.
When he is mistreated – he says nothing.
When he is forgotten – he says nothing.
When no food is given him – he says nothing.
When he is made to advance – he says nothing.
When he is despised – he says nothing.
When he is overburdened – he says nothing.
The true servant of God must do likewise
and say with David:
“Before Thee I have become like a beast of burden.”

St Alphonsus Rodriguez (1532-1617)in-the-difficulties-which-are-placed-before-me-st-alphonsus-rodriguez-20-june-2018

Honour is flashed off exploit, so we say;
And those strokes once that gashed flesh or galled shield
Should tongue that time now, trumpet now that field,
And, on the fighter, forge his glorious day.
On Christ they do and on the martyr may;
But be the war within, the brand we wield
Unseen, the heroic breast not outward-steeled,
Earth hears no hurtle then from fiercest fray.

Yet God (that hews mountain and continent,
Earth, all, out; who, with trickling increment,
Veins violets and tall trees makes more and more)
Could crowd career with conquest while there went
Those years and years by of world without event
That in Majorca, Alfonso watched the door.

Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ (1844-1889),
in honour of Saint Alphonsus Rodriguez SJ (1532-1617)gerard manley hopkins in honour of st alphonsus rodriguez - 31 oct 2018

Posted in MARTYRS, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, SAINT of the DAY, YouTube VIDEOS

Quote of the Day – 25 October – The Memorial of Saints Crispin & St Crispinian – (†285 or 286) Martyrs

Quote of the Day – 25 October – The Memorial of Saints Crisp  in & St Crispinian – (†285 or 286) Martyrs

The feast day of Saints Crispin and Crispinian is 25 October.   Although this feast was removed from the Roman Catholic Church’s universal liturgical calendar following the Second Vatican Council, the two saints are still commemorated on that day in the most recent edition of the Roman Martyrology.   Sts Crispin and Crispinian were the first “band of brothers,” who fought bravely on the battlefield of the soul.

The historian and bishop, St Gregory of Tours (538-594) refers twice in his History of the Franks to a Basilica of Sts Crispin and Crispinian in the northern French city of Soissons, if the Church was already well-established at that time, the commemoration of the martyrs dates from much closer to their martyrdom.

The St Crispin’s Day speech was delivered on 25 October 1415 by King Henry V of England to rouse his soldiers on the morning of the Battle of Agincourt and later chronicled by William Shakespeare in his play, Henry V, in Act IV Scene iii 18–67. In the speech, which fell on Saint Crispin’s Day, Henry V urged his men — who were vastly outnumbered by the French — to recall how the English had previously inflicted great defeats upon the French.

The speech by Shakespeare has been famously portrayed by Sir Laurence Olivier to raise British spirits during the Second World War, and by Sir Kenneth Branagh in the 1989 film Henry V (see video below) and it made famous the phrase “band of brothers.”   The play was written around 1600 and several later writers have used parts of it in their own texts.excerpt from the speech by henry V st crispians day - 25 oct 2018 shakespeare

Note: the text is Shakespeare’s, as the wording of Henry’s historical speech is not known.

WESTMORLAND.   O that we now had here
But one ten thousand of those men in England
That do no work to-day!

KING.   What’s he that wishes so?
My cousin, Westmorland? No, my fair cousin,
If we are mark’d to die, we are enough
To do our country loss; and if to live,
The fewer men, the greater share of honour.

God’s will! I pray thee, wish not one man more.
By Jove, I am not covetous for gold,
Nor care I who doth feed upon my cost,
It yearns me not if men my garments wear,
Such outward things dwell not in my desires.

But if it be a sin to covet honour,
I am the most offending soul alive.
No, faith, my coz, wish not a man from England.
God’s peace!  I would not lose so great an honour
As one man more methinks would share from me
For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more!

Rather proclaim it, Westmorland, through my host,
That he which hath no stomach to this fight,
Let him depart, his passport shall be made,
And crowns for convoy put into his purse,
We would not die in that man’s company
That fears his fellowship to die with us.

This day is call’d the feast of Crispian.
He that outlives this day and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam’d,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say “To-morrow is Saint Crispian.”
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say “These wounds I had on Crispin’s day.”

Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
But he’ll remember, with advantages,
What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words—
Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester—
Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb’red.

This story shall the good man teach his son,
And Crispin, Crispian shall ne’er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be rememberèd—
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers,
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother, be he ne’er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition,
And gentlemen in England now a-bed
Shall think themselves accurs’d they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin’s day.

Posted in MORNING Prayers, POETRY, SAINT of the DAY, St Pope JOHN PAUL

Thought for the Day – 22 October – The Memorial of St Pope John Paul II (1920-2005)

Thought for the Day – 22 October – The Memorial of St Pope John Paul II (1920-2005)

St Peter’s Square had a special meaning for St John Paul. In earlier days he wrote a poem about it.   Below is an excerpt from it:

Marble Floor

Marble floor
our feet meet the earth in this place,
there are so many walls,
so many colonnades,
yet we are not lost. If we find
meaning and oneness,
it is the floor that guides us….
Peter, you are the floor, that others
may walk over you… You guide their steps…
You want to serve their feet that pass
as rock serves the hooves of sheep.
The rock is a gigantic temple floor,
the cross a pasture.

St Peter’s name means “a rock” and Christ said of him “on this Rock I will build my Church.”   The poem is about the role of the Holy Father, who is a shepherd to his flock, a guide to the Church.

St John Paul, keep being our shepherd by your prayers!marble floor by st john paul - 22 oct 2018st-jp-pray-for-us-22 oct 2017 -2

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 3 October – Today’s Gospel: Luke 9:57–62 and the Memorial of St Theodore Guerin SP (1798 – 1856)

One Minute Reflection – 3 October – Today’s Gospel: Luke 9:57–62 – Wednesday of the Twenty-sixth week in Ordinary Time, Year B and the Memorial of St Theodore Guerin SP (1798 – 1856)

“Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests but the Son of man has nowhere to lay his head.”…Luke 9:58foxes have holes - luke 9 58 3 oct 2018

REFLECTION –
“Remember the Father’s glory,
Remember the divine splendour
You left in exiling Yourself on earth
To redeem all the poor sinners.
O Jesus! Humbling Yourself to the Virgin Mary,
You veiled Your infinite greatness and glory.
Ah! Your mother’s breast
Was Your second heaven,
Remember…

Remember that on other shores
The golden stars and silver moon
On which I gaze in the cloudless sky
Delighted and charmed Your Infant eyes.
With Your little hand that caressed Mary
You upheld the world and gave it life,
And You thought of me,
Jesus, my little King,
Remember.

Remember that You worked in solitude
With Your divine hands.
To live forgotten was Your sweetest task.
You rejected human learning.
O You who with just one word could charm the world,
You took delight in hiding Your profound wisdom.
You seemed unlearned,
O All-powerful Lord!
Remember.

Remember that You wandered as a Stranger on earth.
You, the Eternal Word,
You had nothing, no, not even a stone,
Not a shelter, like the birds of heaven.
O Jesus! come within me, come rest Your Head,
Come, my soul is truly ready to receive You.
My Beloved Saviour,
Rest in my heart.
It is Yours.”…St Thérèse of the Child Jesus OCD (1873-1897) Doctor of the Churchremember that you wandered as a stranger on earth - st t of l - 3 oct 2018

PRAYER – Heavenly Father, increase our love and trust for and in You, every day.   Teach us total abandonment to Your loving providence and thus enable us to do Your will in all things.   St Mother Theodora Guérin, you who suffered great persecutions and trials but always abandoned yourself to the Divine Will, please pray for us that we learn to do the same, amen.st-thc3a9odore-guc3a9rin-pray-for-us-3 october 2017 - no2

Posted in ArchAngels and Angels, Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, Our MORNING Offering, POETRY, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY

Our Morning Offering – 2 October – The Memorial of the Holy Guardian Angels

Our Morning Offering – 2 October – The Memorial of the Holy Guardian Angels

My Oldest Friend
By Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

My oldest friend, mine from the hour
When first I drew my breath,
My faithful friend, that shall be mine,
Unfailing, till my death….

Mine when I stand before the Judge,
And mine, if spared to stay
Within the golden furnace, till
My sin is burn’d away.

And mine, O Brother of my soul,
When my release shall come,
Thy gentle arms shall lift me then,
Thy wings shall waft me home.my oldest friend - prayer to our guardian angel by bl john henry newman - 2 october 2018

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, PRAYERS for PRIESTS, PRAYERS for VARIOUS NEEDS

Second Thoughts for the Day – 26 August – Pray for our Priests

Second Thoughts for the Day – 26 August – 21st Sunday of the Year in Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel: John 6:60–69

May we offer our Sunday Communion for all the Priests of the World, who bring us the Sacrament which gives us life.

O my beloved Jesus,
Son of the Father and His Eternal High Priest,
offering Yourself to Him perpetually in the sanctuary of heaven
and here in the Sacrament of Your Redeeming Love,
I adore You.

I praise You that here I find Your Eucharistic Heart,
open, ever-beating with love,
and covering with a flood of Blood and of Water
those who draw near to You in this Sacrament.

I praise You that here I behold Your Eucharistic Face,
filling the shadows of this world with Your deifying light,
and shining into the hearts of those who approach You
in faith, in hope and in love.

I pray to You for Your priests,
without whom this valley of tears would be
devoid of the Holy Sacrifice of the Altar,
without the adorable mysteries of Your life-giving Body and Blood,
and without Your abiding real presence in the tabernacles of the world.

Sanctify Your priests, O Jesus!
Wash them in the Blood and Water gushing at every moment
from Your Sacred Side
Heal them in the light of Your Eucharistic Face and,
to do this, draw them all into Your sacramental presence.

Let Your tabernacles magnetise their souls,
and the desire to abide before Your Eucharistic Face
hold sway over their hearts.
Let Your Sacred Body exposed in the monstrance
exercise over them the most compelling of all attractions.

Look today upon those priests who, for whatever reason,
have forgotten the way to Your tabernacles
and rarely, if ever, stop all else
to rest their tired bodies and still their minds
before Your Eucharistic Face,
and to adore You simply because . . . You are there.

Save Your priests in danger of falling into sin,
and lift those who have fallen,
so that, having confessed their faults and received absolution,
they may return to Your altar and to the joy of their youth.

Let not one of Your priests remain outside the radiance of Your Eucharistic Face.
Draw them all out of this world’s darkness
into Your wonderful light,
that with the psalmist they might say not once,
but again and again:
“Look to Him and be radiant
and on your faces there will be no trace of shame.”
Amen.

I pray especially for my own Priest, Fr Enrico Parry and Catholic Priest Media – https://catholicpriestmedia.com/pray for our priests - i pray to you for your priests - 26 aug 2018sanctify your priests o jesus - 26 aug 2018 pray for our priests

Posted in GOD the FATHER, HOMILIES, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, PRAYERS to the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on REPENTANCE

Thought for the Day – 17 July – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 11:20-24

Thought for the Day – 17 July – Tuesday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, B – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 11:20-24

To be converted and return to the Lord
Verse Homily of
Saint Jacob of Sarug (c 449-521)
Syrian monk and Bishop

I will go back to my Father’s house like the prodigal son (Lk 15:18) and He will welcome me.
For I was dead through sin as though by sickness;
raise me up from my distress that I may praise Your name!
O Lord of heaven and earth, come to my help and show me Your way,
that I may come to You.
Draw me to You, Son of the Most Good
and bring Your compassion to completion.
I will set out towards You and there be filled with joy.
Knead for me now the grain of life at this time when I am crushed.

I set out in search of You and the Evil One spied on me like a thief (cf. Lk 10:30).
He bound and chained me in the pleasures of this wicked world:
he imprisoned me in its pleasures and slammed the door in my face.
There was no one to free me, so that I might set out in search of You, O Lord, my good!…
O Lord, I long to be Yours and walk Your way.
See how I meditate Your commandments by day and by night (Ps 1:2).
Grant my request and accept my prayer, O merciful one!
Do not cast off the hope of Your servant, for he is waiting for you.

Saint Jacob of Sarug (c 449-521)

the prodigal son - large

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, PRAYERS of the SAINTS

Our Morning Offering – 13 July

Our Morning Offering – 13 July – Friday of the Fourteenth Week in Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel :  Matthew 10:16-23.

Prayer of Peace
St John of the Cross (1542-1591) Doctor of the Church

O blessed Jesus,
give me stillness of soul in You.
Let Your mighty calmness reign in me.
Rule me, O King of Gentleness,
King of Peace.prayer of peace - st john of the cross - o blessed jesus - 13 july 2018

People of Easter
By Daryl Madden

He issued a call
For holiness true
Let Gods light appear
Flow through me and through you

Do not abandon
Yourself to despair
We are people of Easter
Hallelujah we share

In difficult times
Let this be our song
Binding in Word
Through the One we belong

We are people of joy
One of the light
We’ve nothing to fear
Lords’ love shining bright

Hold fast to our faith
Proclamation to cope
God will not disappoint
Through His promise of hope

https://darylmadden.wordpress.com/2018/04/08/people-of-easter/comment-page-1/#comment-2261people of easter - daryl madden - 13 july 2018

Posted in MORNING Prayers, POETRY, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, St Pope JOHN PAUL, The HOLY FACE

Thought for the Day – 12 July – The Memorial of St Veronica

“Veronica?”

“Bernice Veronica” – both names referring to the Woman who wiped the Face of Jesus, commonly depicted in every Catholic church, at the Sixth Station of the Cross.

Did she exist?   And what does it mean to be “a Veronica?”

The Catholic Church tells us that a veil bearing a miraculous image of the Face of Jesus has existed since the earliest centuries, recorded in history and in art.   About the time this miraculous veil first appeared in Rome, in the Middle Ages, the name “Veronica” referred to the veil itself–“Veronica” meaning “vera” or true, and “icon” meaning image, or even more precisely, “to be present.”   Those who gazed upon the veil bearing the true Face of Jesus stood in God’s presence.   They were turned toward His Face.
Legends sprang up sometime later about a woman named “Veronica,” who was sometimes associated with the woman “Berenice” or “Bernice,” the bleeding woman who touches the hem of Jesus’s garment in the Gospel.
“These pious traditions cannot be documented but there is no reason why the belief that such an act of compassion did occur should not find expression in the veneration paid to one called Veronica.” —The Catholic Encyclopedia.
St Pope John Paul II expressed the answer to the question of Veronica most beautifully in his poem,

“Name”

In the crowd walking towards the place

[of the Agony]–

did you open up a gap at some point or were you

[opening it] from the beginning?

And since when? You tell me, Veronica.

Your name was born in the very instant

in which your heart

became an effigy:  the effigy of truth.

Your name was born from what you gazed upon.

–Karol Wojtylaname - st veronica - karol wotyla - st john paul - 12 july 2018

When a soul performs an “act of compassion,” Jesus leaves His image on the “veil” of the soul.   In other words, while contemplating the Face of Jesus in an image, in the Word of God in the Scriptures, in a person made in the image and likeness of God, or above all, in the Eucharist, the soul places itself in the Presence of God.   When we are turned completely toward the Face of God, through a daily face-to-face encounter in prayer–by the power of the Holy Spirit–God gradually transforms the soul into the “True Image” of His Son, Jesus Christ.   As Pope St. John Paul II says, our hearts must become an “effigy of truth,” a “true icon.”   

Then our name too will be born from what we gaze upon.  It will be “Veronica.”

St Veronica pray for us!st-veronica-pray-for-us-21 - 12 JULY 2017

Posted in MORNING Prayers, ON the SAINTS, POETRY, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 22 June – The Memorial of St Paulinus of Nola (c 354-431)

Thought for the Day – 22 June – The Memorial of St Paulinus of Nola (c 354-431)

Of him, Pope Benedict XVI said:

“In our catechesis on the great teachers of the early Church, we now turn to Saint Paulinus, the Bishop of Nola in southern Italy.
A native of Bordeaux in Gaul, Paulinus became the Roman governor of Campania, where, after encountering the depth of popular devotion to Saint Felix Martyr, he was led to embrace the Christian faith.   After the tragic loss of their first child, he and his wife sold their goods and undertook a life of chastity and prayer.
Ordained a priest and then Bishop of Nola, Paulinus distinguished himself by his charity to the poor during the troubled times of the barbarian invasions.
A man of letters and a gifted poet, Paulinus placed his art at the service of Christ and the Church. In his poetry and his vast correspondence, Paulinus expressed his deep faith and his love of the poor.   

His letters to such contemporary churchmen as Saints Ambrose, Augustine, Jerome and Martin of Tours, reflect his asceticism, his deep sense of the Church’s communion and his cultivation of the practice of spiritual friendship as a means of experiencing that communion within the mystery of Christ’s mystical Body, enlivened by the Holy Spirit.”

Many of us are tempted to “retire” early in life, after an initial burst of energy.   Devotion to Christ and His work is waiting to be done all around us.   Paulinus’ life had scarcely begun when he thought it was over, as he took his ease on that estate in Spain.   “Man proposes, but God disposes.”

The life of Saint Paulinus is one of great accomplishments and positions—none more important than those which began with his baptism into the faith.   As with all baptism, Paulinus was made anew, filled with the Holy Spirit and through this rebirth, was able to devote himself to the holy work of God, serving others and bringing many to the faith. Today, we pray for a renewal of our own baptismal promise, awake and alive in our faith!

The Word of the Cross

by Saint Paulinus of Nola

Look on thy God, Christ hidden in our flesh.
A bitter word, the cross, and bitter sight:
Hard rind without, to hold the heart of heaven.
Yet sweet it is; for God upon that tree
Did offer up His life: upon that rood
My Life hung, that my life might stand in God.
Christ, what am I to give Thee for my life?
Unless take from Thy hands the cup they hold,
To cleanse me with the precious draught of death.
What shall I do? My body to be burned?
Make myself vile? The debt’s not paid out yet.
Whate’er I do, it is but I and Thou,
And still do I come short, still must Thou pay
My debts, O Christ;  for debts Thyself hadst none.
What love may balance Thine? My Lord was found
In fashion like a slave, that so His slave
Might find himself in fashion like his Lord.
Think you the bargain’s hard, to have exchanged
The transient for the eternal, to have sold
Earth to buy Heaven? More dearly God bought me.

St Paulinus of Nola, Pray for us!st paulinus of nola pray for us - 22 june 2018

Posted in LENT, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, The PASSION

Our Morning Offering – 23 March – Friday of the 5th Week of Lent 2018

Our Morning Offering – 23 March – Friday of the 5th Week of Lent 2018

Go to dark Gethsemane
James Montgomery (1771-1854)

Go to dark Gethsemane,
you that feel the tempter’s power,
your Redeemer’s conflict see,
watch with Him one bitter hour.
Turn not from His griefs away,
learn of Jesus Christ to pray.

Follow to the judgement hall,
view the Lord of life arraigned,
O the wormwood and the gall!
O the pangs His soul sustained!
Shun not suffering, shame or loss,
learn from Christ to bear the Cross.

Calvary’s mournful mountain climb,
there adoring at His feet.
Mark the miracle of time,
God’s own sacrifice complete,
“It is finished” hear Him cry,
learn from Jesus Christ to die..go to dark gethsamane - james montgomery - 23 march 2018

Posted in BREVIARY Prayers, CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, HYMNS, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY, St JOSEPH

Our Morning Offering – 19 March – The Solemnity of the Feast of St Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Patron of the Universal Church, Patron of Fathers, Patron of the Dying

Our Morning Offering – 19 March – The Solemnity of the Feast of St Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Guardian of Jesus and Patron of the Universal Church, Patron of Fathers, Patron of the Dying, Patron of Workers. et al

Joseph, wise ruler of God’s earthly household

Joseph, wise ruler of God’s earthly household,
nearest of all men to the heart of Jesus,
be still a father, lovingly providing
for us, His brethren.

Saint strong and manly, chosen by the Father,
as trusted guardian of the Son eternal,
guide us as once you guided Wisdom’s footsteps
with sure direction.

Husband of Mary, loving and beloved,
teach us the joy of love so pure and holy,
warming our hearts with love
for God’s own Mother by your example.

Saint of the dying, blest with Mary’s presence,
in death you rested in the arms of Jesus;
so at our ending, Jesus, Mary, Joseph,
come to assist us!joseph wise ruler of god's earthly household - 19 march 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, LENT, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The HOLY CROSS

Lenten Reflection – 17 March 2018 – Saturday of the 4th Week of Lent

Lenten Reflection – 17 March 2018 – Saturday of the 4th Week of Lent

Jeremiah 11:18-20, Psalms 7:2-3, 9-12, John 7:40-53

Jeremiah 11:18 – “The Lord made it known to me and I knew;
then thou didst show me their evil deeds.”

John 7:50-53 – Nicodemus, who had gone to him before and who was one of them, said to them, “Does our law judge a man without first giving him a hearing and learning what he does?”    They replied, “Are you from Galilee too?   Search and you will see that no prophet is to rise from Galilee.”   They went each to his own house…”sat of the 4th week - 17 march 2018

Tomorrow we shall enter Passiontide and the long shadow of the Cross is now cast over our Lenten journey.   In today’s first reading, the first of Jeremiah’s ‘confessions’, he is coping with the shocking fact that people are trying to murder him.   And how does he cope?   In the way that we all must, by turning back to God.

In the Gospel, we hear the sinister note of the forces who are moving towards the destruction of Jesus.   It starts (as so often in the fourth Gospel) with divisions among “the crowd”.   There are three positions that they variously adopt – i) that Jesus is the prophet; ii) that He is the Messiah;  iii) that Jesus is none of the above, because Messiah’s don’t come from Galilee.

The next division is between the servants who had been sent to arrest Jesus and the authorities who had sent them.   The servants fail to bring him back because ‘no human being ever spoke like this’ – the Pharisees respond with a bullying argument argument ‘The crowd don’t know the law and they’re accursed.’

The final division is between Nicodemus, battling bravely against the tide and his peers. He wants due process of law whilst they simply re-assert their slogan ‘prophets don’t come from Galilee’.

Significantly, the division remains and no unity is produced amongst the dissidents but ‘they each went to their own home’.   And yet, Jesus’ death is now visible on the horizon, less than two weeks away!…(Fr Nicholas King S.J. – The Lenten Journey to Easter)

Have I ever been the cause of division and arguments, perhaps unfairly?
What ideologies might I cling to that blind me from seeing the true and bigger picture?
Have I the strength to battle against the tide of evil?

“Great thing is the knowledge of the crucified Christ.   How many things are enclosed inside this treasure!   Christ crucified!   Such is the hidden treasure of wisdom and science.   Do not be deceived, then, under the pretext of wisdom.   Gather before the covering and pray that it may be uncovered.   Foolish philosopher of this world, what you are looking for is worthless…  What is the advantage of being thirsty, if you despise the source? …  And what is His precept but that we believe in Him and love each other? In whom?   In Christ crucified.   This is His commandment:  that we believe in Christ crucified … But where humility is, there is also majesty, where weakness is, there shall one find power, where death is, there shall be life as well.   If you wish to arrive at the second part, do not despise the first “(Sermon 160, 3-4) St Augustine

Our Lord’s Passion
St Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153) Doctor of the Church

In Your hour of holy sadness
could I share with You, what gladness
should Your Cross to me be showing.
Gladness past all thought of knowing,
bowed beneath Your Cross to die!

Blessed Jesus, thanks I render
that in bitter death, so tender,
You now hear Your supplicant calling,
Save me Lord and keep from falling
from You, when my hour is night.our lord's passion - st bernard - 17 march 2018

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, GOD ALONE!, LENT, MORNING Prayers, POETRY, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, The WORD, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Lenten Reflection – 26 February 2018 – Monday of the Second Week of Lent

26 February 2018 – Monday of the Second Week of Lent
Daniel 9:4-10, Psalms 79:8-9, 11, 13, Luke 6:36-38

Daniel 9:4-5 – “I prayed to the Lord my God and made confession, saying, “O Lord, the great and terrible God, who keepest covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, we have sinned and done wrong and acted wickedly and rebelled, turning aside from thy commandments and ordinances…”

Luke 6:36-38 – Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not and you will not be condemned; forgive and you will be forgiven; give and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For the measure you give will be the measure you get back.”monday of the second week - 26 feb 2018

Daniel confesses that his people’s sufferings in exile are due to their own lack of fodelity to God. This sort of confession is a frank admission that evil has consequences. It is similar to Jesus’ teaching – “one who takes up the sword will perish by the sword.”

The argument may be turned round – good deeds have beneficial consequences. “The measure you give will be the measure you get back” whether it be mercy, forgiveness or sympathetic understanding.

If we keep giving out good things consistently, the blessings we will receive will be beyond measure. Every giving enriches the giver, whether gift be in the form of material assistance, psychologival affirmation or spiritual admonition, giving up an argument, settling a quarrel or going out of our way to help someone who deserves it least!

Be not afraid then to give, for you will receive beyond anything you could ever expect.

Am I generous with my time, material gifts, with my love?
Am I patient and willing to be forgiving, even when I was not in error?
Am I aware that as part of the Body of Christ, my good and my bad, affect all?
Archbishop Thomas Menamparampil SDB – God’sWord

“Desire not the praises of men, seeing they are vain.   Be not fearful of their reproach, for instead of doing harm to your soul, humiliations cleanses it and renders it more meet to receive a brighter crown in heaven and none are worthy to be glorified in heaven who are unable to bear reproach on earth for the love of God.”Thomas a Kempis

Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of thy name;
deliver us and forgive our sins, for thy name’s sake! …Psalm 79:9

For ah! the Master is so fair,
His smile so sweet to banished men
That they who meet it unaware
Can never rest on earth again.

And they who see Him risen afar
At God’s right hand to welcome them
Forgetful stand of home and land,
Desiring fair Jerusalem.

Praise God! the Master is so sweet;
Praise God! the country is so fair,
We would not hold them from His feet.
We would but haste to meet them there.

English Missal 1936for ah, the master is so fair - lenten prayer - missal 1936 - monday of the 2nd week - 26 feb 2018