Posted in MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, OCTOBER - The HOLY ROSARY, The 5th Sorrowful Mystery - The CRUCIFIXION, The HOLY ROSARY/ROSARY CRUSADE, The INCARNATION, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 13 October – The Fifth Sorrowful Mystery – The Crucifixion

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

“Month of the Holy Rosary”
The Fifth Sorrowful Mystery
The Crucifixion

“Jesus had only one consolation in the midst of His terrible sufferings.
His mother, Mary was beside the Cross along with His beloved Apostle and the holy women who had always followed Him.
Mary loved her Son with a love greater than that of any mother, which is the greatest love possible on earth.
She loved Jesus with the heart of a Mother and of a Virgin – He was her only treasure.
Moreover, she loved Him, not only as her Son but, also as her God.
Precisely because she loved Him as her God, her love was in perfect harmony with the divine will.

She understood the mystery which led Jesus to accept death on the Cross – the mystery of the Redemption.
“He was offered because it was his own will” (Isa 53:7).
He was offered on our behalf, as a voluntary victim to His heavenly Father.

In the same way, Mary freely offered herself to God, as a victim of expiation along with her Son.
She saw on one hand, the Child of her womb – murdered and dying in frightful agony and, on the other, sinful humanity in need of redemption from its iniquity.
She did not hesitate; even as she pronounced her Fiat when the Angel told her that she was to be the instrument of the Incarnation, so now, she repeated her acceptance of her part in the Redemption.

By her first Fiat, she became the Mother of God; by her second Fiat, she became the loving Mother of poor sinners and our co-redemptrix in Jesus and for Jesus.
Woman, behold thy son,” (Jn 19:27) the Redeemer said, referring to John and to the entire humans race as represented by him.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/10/12/thought-for-the-day-12-october-the-fifth-sorrowful-mystery-the-crucifixion/

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, LENT, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, STATIONS of the CROSS, The HOLY CROSS, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The REDEMPTION, The STATIONS of the CROSS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 14 September – “O death, where is your sting? O grave, where is your victory?

One Minute Reflection – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross – Readings: Numbers 21:4-9, Psalms 78:1-2, 34-35, 36-37, 38, Philippians 2:6-11, John 3:13-17

“…And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” – John 3:14-15

REFLECTION – “That brazen serpent was hung up as a remedy for the biting serpents, not as a type of Him that suffered for us but, as a contrast. It saved those that looked upon it, not because they believed it to live but because it was killed and killed with it, were the powers that were subject to it, being destroyed as it deserved. And what is the fitting epitaph for it from us? O death, where is your sting? O grave, where is your victory?” You are overthrown by the Cross. you are slain by Him, Who is the Giver of Life. You are without breath, dead, without motion, even though you keep the form of a serpent lifted up high on a pole.” – St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390) Archbishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church (Oration 45).

PRAYER – O God, who willed that Your Only Begotten Son should undergo the Cross to save the human race, grant, we pray, that we, who have known His mystery on earth, may merit the grace of His redemption in heaven. For You placed the salvation of the human race on the wood of the Cross, so that, where death arose, life might again spring forth and the evil one, who conquered on a tree, might likewise on a tree be conquered through Christ. O Cross, You are the glorious sign of victory. Through your power may we share in the triumph of Christ Jesus. We adore You O Christ and we praise You, for by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world. Amen.

Posted in CARMELITES, DIVINE MERCY, I BELIEVE!, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MORNING Prayers, ORIGINAL SIN, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, PRECIOUS BLOOD PRAYERS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on HUMAN DIGNITY, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the DEVIL/EVIL, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The REDEMPTION

Our Morning Offering – 31 August – Heal Us Lord God

Our Morning Offering – 31 August – “Month of the Immaculate Heart”

Heal Us Lord God
By St Albert of Trapani O.Carm. (c 1240-1307)

O my God,
You have created the human race
by Your wonderful power.
It is an act of Your clemency that has called us
to share Your glory and eternal life.
When the first sin condemned us to suffer death,
out of Your goodness,
You wished to redeem us
through the Blood of Your Son,
To unite us to Yourself
through our faith
and Your great mercy.
You have brought us back
from the shame of our sin,
You have veiled our dishonour
in the brightness of Your glory.
Look now and see that what You have created,
giving it subtle limbs and joints
and made beautiful through its immortal soul,
is now subject to the attack of Satan.
Be pleased Lord
to reconstitute Your work and heal it.
May Your power be glorified
and may the malice of the enemy be stunned.
Amen

Posted in GOD ALONE!, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on GRATITUDE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on THE WORLD, The HEART, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 23 July – The Divided Heart

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

The Divided Heart

Even if your heart has not become the property of the devil and retains a horror of mortal sin, it is still possible, that you have not given it completely to God.
Your heart is divided.
Part of it belongs to God and part of it to the world.
You are distracted by your own self-love and earthly desires.
A heart which is divided in its affections between God and the world, is dazzled by everything around it and tends to forget God, more and more.

We protest that we belong entirely to God but, in practice, we are so absorbed by work, ambition and pleasure, that we neglect God.

A man who is torn between love of God and love of the world is like Cain who, unlike Abel, did not offer God, the best part of his flock but kept this for himself and offered God whatever he had rejected.
God was pleased with Abel’s sacrifice but had no regard for that of Cain, who finally became a murderer and was cursed by his Creator.

Do we offer God the leavings of life while we keep the best part of it for our selves?
Do we think of ourselves nearly all the time and give very little thought to God?
This is not the way in which God has dealt with us.
Not only has He created us but, He loves us with an everlasting love.
He came down to earth and lived as our fellow man.
He redeemed us by His Precious Blood and gave Himself to us as our food!

Why are we not willing to give ourselves to Him forever in return?
Gratitude demands that we should do so.
God, moeover, is our supreme and only good.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/04/30/thought-for-the-day-30-april-the-divided-heart/

Posted in JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DESPAIR, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 5 July – Faith and Hope

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

Faith and Hope

“Christian hope derives from faith.
When we believe in the infinitely good and merciful God, Who was made man for us and Who shed His Precious Blood, for our salvation, we experience a great hope and a great confidence.
No matter how numerous our sins and our defects, as long as we are sincerely repentant, we should continue to hope for the forgiveness of God.
Despair, which led Judas to commit suicide, should never be allowed to enter our minds.
Like the penitent Magdalen, like the prodigal son, like the lost sheep and, like the good thief, let us trust in Jesus with faith, hope and sorrow for our sins.
Let us remember, that He is infinitely good and merciful and ardently desires to pardon us.
Together with this hope of God’s forgiveness, we should nurture the hope of gaining Heaven, which the Lord, in His infinite goodness, has promised, not only to innocent souls but, also to repentant sinners.
In order that this hope may not be in vain, however, we should include, in our repentance for our sins, a firm purpose of amendment.

Let us remember, that the more we hope for, the more we shall obtain!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2021/07/04/thought-for-the-day-4-july-faith/

Posted in GOD ALONE!, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on THE WORLD, The HEART, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 22 April – The Divided Heart

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

The Divided Heart

Even if your heart has not become the property of the devil and retains a horror of mortal sin, it is still possible, that you have not given it completely to God.
Your heart is divided.
Part of it belongs to God and part of it to the world.
You are distracted by your own self-love and earthly desires.
A heart which is divided in its affections between God and the world, is dazzled by everything around it and tends to forget God, more and more.

We protest that we belong entirely to God but, in practice, we are so absorbed by work, ambition and pleasure, that we neglect God.

A man who is torn between love of God and love of the world is like Cain who, unlike Abel, did not offer God, the best part of his flock but kept this for himself and offered God whatever he had rejected.
God was pleased with Abel’s sacrifice but had no regard for that of Cain, who finally became a murderer and was cursed by his Creator.

Do we offer God the leavings of life while we keep the best part of it for our selves?
Do we think of ourselves nearly all the time and give very little thought to God?
This is not the way in which God has dealt with us.
Not only has He created us but, He loves us with an everlasting love.
He came down to earth and lived as our fellow man.
He redeemed us by His Precious Blood and gave Himself to us as our food!

Why are we not willing to give ourselves to Him forever in return?
Gratitude demands that we should do so.
God, moeover, is our supreme and only good.

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/04/30/thought-for-the-day-30-april-the-divided-heart/

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, EASTER, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS, The REDEMPTION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 10 April – Easter Saturday – ‘What He offers us, is so precious, that what He asks of us, is as nothing.’ St Augustine

One Minute Reflection – 10 April – Easter Saturday, Readings: First: Acts 4: 13-21, Psalm: Psalms 118: 1 and 14-15ab, 16-18, 19-21, Gospel: Mark 16: 9-15 *First Reading and Gospel in full below

“Preach the gospel to every creature” – Mark 16:15

REFLECTION – “You have heard what the Lord said to His disciples after the Resurrection. He sent them out to preach the Gospel and they did so. Listen: “Through all the earth their voice resounds and to the ends of the world, their message” (Ps 18[19],5). Step by step, the Gospel has reached even to us and the ends of the earth. In a few words the Lord, addressing Himself to His disciples, set out what we are to do and what we have to hope for. Just as you have heard, He said: “Whoever believes and is baptised will be saved.” He asks for our faith and offers us salvation. What He offers us, is so precious, that what He asks of us, is as nothing.

“The children of men take refuge in the shadow of your wings, O my God… from your delightful stream You give them to drink, for with you is the fountain of life” (Ps 35[36],8f.). Jesus Christ is the Fountain of Life. Before the Gountain of Life came to us, we had only a human salvation, like that of the beasts of which the psalm speaks: “Man and beast you save, O Lord” (Ps 35[36],7). But now, the Fountain of Life has come even to us, the Fountain of Life died for our sakes. Will He refuse us His life Who, for our sakes, gave His death? He is salvation and this salvation is not worthless, like the other one. Why? Because it does not pass away. The Lord has come. He died, but He killed death. In Himself, He brought an end to death. He assumed it and He killed it. Where is death now, then? Look for it in Christ and it is no longer there. It used to be there but there it died. O life, death of death! Take heart, it will also die in us. What was fulfilled in the Head, will also be fulfilled in the members and death will die in us, too.” – St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor of the Church – Sermon 233

PRAYER – Lord our God, You increase and multiply Your faithful by Your abundant gift of grace.   Look now on Your chosen people and clothe them forever in the garment of eternal life.   May we, in confident love of You, go forth and live our lives in witness and speaking with joy of the ways of truth.   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.

Acts 4: 13-21
13 Now seeing the constancy of Peter and of John, understanding that they were illiterate and ignorant men, they wondered and they knew them that they had been with Jesus.
14 Seeing the man also who had been healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.
15 But they commanded them to go aside out of the council; and they conferred among themselves,
16 Saying: What shall we do to these men? for indeed a known miracle hath been done by them, to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem: it is manifest and we cannot deny it.
17 But that it may be no farther spread among the people, let us threaten them that they speak no more in this name to any man.
18 And calling them, they charged them not to speak at all, nor teach in the name of Jesus.
19 But Peter and John answering, said to them: If it be just in the sight of God, to hear you rather than God, judge ye.
20 For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.
21 But they threatening, sent them away, not finding how they might punish them, because of the people; for all men glorified what had been done, in that which had come to pass.

Gospel: Mark 16: 9-15
9 But he rising early the first day of the week, appeared first to Mary Magdalen, out of whom he had cast seven devils.
10 She went and told them that had been with him, who were mourning and weeping.
11 And they hearing that he was alive and had been seen by her, did not believe.
12 And after that he appeared in another shape to two of them walking, as they were going into the country.
13 And they going, told it to the rest: neither did they believe them.
14 At length he appeared to the eleven as they were at table and he upbraided them with their incredulity and hardness of heart because they did not believe them, who had seen him after he was risen again.
15 And he said to them: Go ye into the whole world and preach the gospel to every creature.

Posted in EASTER, FATHERS of the Church, LENTEN PRAYERS & NOVENAS, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS for SEASONS, The LAMB of GOD, The REDEMPTION

Our Morning Offering – 8 April – Easter Thursday – O Lamb of God

Our Morning Offering – 8 April – Easter Thursday

O Lamb of God
By St Irenaeus (c 130 – c 202)
Bishop & Martyr, Father of the Church

O Lamb of God,
who takes away the sin of the world,
look upon us and have mercy upon us,
You who art Yourself, both victim and Priest,
Yourself, both Reward and Redeemer,
keep safe from all evil
those whom You have redeemed,
O Saviour of the world.
Amen

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, GOOD FRIDAY, HOLY WEEK, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The 5th Sorrowful Mystery - The CRUCIFIXION, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 3 April – The Death of our Saviour

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

The Death of our Saviour

“Quite apart from the most fearful physical torments, such as the Scourging, the Crowning with Thorns and the Crucifixion, Jesus willed to endure extreme moral sufferings, such as the betrayal by Judas, the desertion by His Apostles in His hour of trial and the denial by the Head of the Apostles himself.
He willed to endure an even greater spiritual affliction than these, which was so mysterious as to be almost beyond our understanding.
This, was His abandonment by His heavenly Father.
“My God, my God,” He cries out in His last agony, “why hast thou forsaken me.”
His human heart elected to experience, at that moment, the removal of the inmost consolations and joys, which flowed from His continual union with His heavenly Father.
He was both Man and God.
His human nature was hypostatically united to the Word and in this way, even His human nature participated in His infinite happiness.
As Man, however, He chose to be deprived of this happiness.
Being burdened with all our sins, He wished to endure the most frightful sufferings and even abandonment by His heavenly Father.

We shall be able to understand this, if we ever experience moral affliction, which can be much worse than physical pain.
On thee occasions, we should we should console ourselves with the reflection, that Jesus has walked this way of sorrows before us.
Then we shall remain united in these tials to Him, Who is the only source of comfort and resignation.
Let us prostrate ourselves before His lifeless Body, covered with sores and furrowed with blood!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/04/14/thought-for-the-day-14-april-the-death-of-our-saviour/

Posted in "Follow Me", DOCTORS of the Church, EASTER, HOLY SATURDAY, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The REDEMPTION

Quote of the Day – 3 April – ‘By nothing else except the CROSS …’

Quote of the Day – 3 April – Holy Saturday

By nothing else except the CROSS
of our Lord Jesus Christ
has death been brought low.
The sin of our first parent destroyed,
hell plundered,
resurrection bestowed,
the power given us to despise the things of this world,
even death itself,
the road back to the former blessedness made smooth,
the gates of paradise opened,
our nature seated at the right hand of God
and we made children and heirs of God.
By the CROSS, all these things have been set aright…
It is a seal that the destroyer may not strike us,
a raising up of those who lie fallen,
a support for those who stand,
a staff for the infirm,
a crook for the shepherded,
a guide for the wandering,
a perfecting of the advanced,
salvation for soul and body,
a deflector, of all evils,
a cause of all goods,
a destruction of sin,
a plant of resurrection
and a tree of eternal life!”

St. John Damascene (675-749)
Father and Doctor

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, GOOD FRIDAY, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The 5th Sorrowful Mystery - The CRUCIFIXION, The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 2 April – The Crucifixion

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

The Crucifixion

“After a painful and exhausting journey, Jesus reaches Calvary, where He is to be Crucified.
Once again, He is stripped of His garments, which, by this time, have become stuck to His swollen sores.
Then, He is stretched upon the wooden Cross, to which, one of the brutal executioners fastens His Hands and Feet, with blows from a hammer.
The sharp nails are driven through His flesh into the hard wood.
Jesus looks upwards and offers Himself in silence, as a Victim of Expiation, on behalf of His tormentors and of all of us.
His Mother Mary, is standing a few paces away in the company of the holy women and of the beloved Disciple.
The blows of the hammer pierce the maternal heart of the Blessed Virgin but,she remains silent also and prays.

When we have been afflicted by misfortune or sorrow and our hearts are racked with grief, how do we behave?
Have we the resignation, the trust in God and the spirit of prayer, which Jesus and Mary had on Calvary?
Let us remind ourselves, that we are members of the Mystical Body of Christ.
If Jesus our Head, has suffered, how much more, do miserable sinners like the rest of us ,deserve to suffer!?
Jesus wishes us to participate in the work of redemption by uniting our sufferings to His.
“I rejoice now,” says St Paul, “in the suffering I bear … and what is lacking of the suffering of Christ, I fill up in my flesh…” (Col 1:24).

Let us face adversity with courage, therefore and keep our eyes hopefully towards Heaven.
Let us remember, as St Paul also says, that even as we share in the sufferings of Christ, so we shall share in His triumph (Cf 2 Cor 1:7).
Jesus had to ascen Mount Calvary, before He could ascend to Heaven.
If we are to walk in His footsteps, we shall have to do the same.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOOD FRIDAY, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION

Good Friday Refletion – 2 April – CONTEMPLATING THE LORD’S PASSION

Good Friday Refletion – 2 April

CONTEMPLATING THE LORD’S PASSION

From a Sermon by St Pope Leo the Great (400-461)
Father and Doctor unitatis Ecclesiae

True reverence for the Lord’s passion means, fixing the eyes of our heart on Jesus crucified and recognising in Him our own humanity.

The earth – our earthly nature – should tremble at the suffering of its Redeemer. The rocks – the hearts of unbelievers – should come forth, the massive stones now ripped apart. Foreshadowings of the future Resurrection, should appear in the holy city, the Church of God, what is happening to our bodies, should now take place in our hearts.

No-one, however weak, is denied a share in the victory of the Cross. No-one is beyond the help of the prayer of Christ. His prayer brought benefit to the multitude that raged against Him. How much more, does it bring, to those who turn to Him in repentance.

Ignorance has been destroyed, obstinacy has been overcome. The Sacred Blood of Christ, has quenched the flaming sword that barred access to the tree of life. The age-old night of sin has given place, to the true light.

The Christian people are invited to share the riches of paradise. All who have been reborn have the way open before them, to return to their native land, from which they had been exiled. Unless, indeed ,they close off for themselves, the path that could be opened before the faith of a thief.

The business of this life should not preoccupy us with its anxiety and pride, so that we no longer strive, with all the love of our heart, to be like our Redeemer and to follow His example. Everything that He did, or suffered, was for our salvation – He wanted His Body to share the goodness of its Head.

First of all, in taking our human nature, while remaining God, so that the Word became man, He left no member of the human race, the unbeliever excepted, without a share in His mercy. Who does not share a common nature with Christ, if he has welcomed Christ, who took our nature and is reborn in the Spirit, through whom Christ was conceived?

Again, who cannot recognise in Christ, his own infirmities? Who would not recognise that Christ’s eating and sleeping, His sadness and His shedding tears of love, are marks of the nature of a slave?

It was this nature of a slave, that had to be healed of its ancient wounds and cleansed of the defilement of sin. For that reason, the only-begotten Son of God, became also the Son of Man. He was to have both the reality of human nature and the fullness of the Godhead.

The Body, that lay lifeless in the tomb, is ours. The Body that rose again on the third day, is ours. The Body, that ascended above all the heights of heaven, to the right hand of the Father’s glory, is ours. If then we walk in the way of His commandments and are not ashamed to acknowledge, the price He paid for our salvation in a lowly Body, we too are to rise to share His glory. The promise He made will be fulfilled, in the sight of all: –“whoever acknowledges Me before men, I too will acknowledge him before My Father who is in heaven.”

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, MAUNDY THURSDAY, QUOTES for CHRIST, The LAMB of GOD, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION

Journey to the Cross – Maundy Thursday – 1 April – The Lamb That Was Slain, Has Delivered Us from Death and has Given Us Life

Journey to the Cross – Maundy Thursday – 1 April

The Lamb That Was Slain, Has Delivered Us from Death

and has Given Us Life

Today we leave dear Thomas à Kempis and read instead a reflection by Saint Melito, Bishop of Sardis (Died c 180) Father of the Church, whose Feast day it is today.

There was much proclaimed by the prophets about the mystery of the Passover – that mystery is Christ and to Him be glory forever and ever. Amen.

For the sake of suffering humanity He came down from heaven to earth, clothed Himself in that humanity in the Virgin’s womb and was born a man. Having then a body capable of suffering, He took the pain of fallen man upon Himself; He triumphed over the diseases of soul and body, that were its cause, and by His Spirit, which was incapable of dying, He dealt man’s destroyer, death, a fatal blow.

He was led forth like a lamb; He was slaughtered like a sheep. He ransomed us from our servitude to the world, as He had ransomed Israel from the hand of Egypt; He freed us from our slavery to the devil, as He had freed Israel from the hand of Pharaoh. He sealed our souls with His own Spirit and the members of our body, with His own Blood.

He is the One, Who covered death with shame and cast the devil into mourning, as Moses cast Pharaoh into mourning. He is the One, Who smote sin and robbed iniquity of offspring, as Moses robbed the Egyptians of their offspring. He is the One, Who brought us out of slavery into freedom, out of darkness into light, out of death into life, out of tyranny into an eternal kingdom; who made us a new priesthood, a people chosen to be His own forever. He is the Passover that is our salvation.

It is He who endured every kind of suffering, in all those who foreshadowed Him. In Abel, He was slain, in Isaac bound, in Jacob exiled, in Joseph sold, in Moses exposed to die. He was sacrificed in the Passover lamb, persecuted in David, dishonoured in the prophets.

It is He who was made man of the Virgin, He who was hung on the tree; it is He who was buried in the earth, raised from the dead and taken up to the heights of heaven. He is the mute Lamb, the slain Lamb born of Mary, the fair ewe. He was seized from the flock, dragged off to be slaughtered, sacrificed in the evening, and buried at night. On the tree no bone of His was broken; in the earth His body knew no decay. He is the One, Who rose from the dead and who raised man from the depths of the tomb.

From an Easter homily by St Melito of Sardis

Posted in CHRIST the WORD, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MATER DOLOROSA - Mother of SORROWS, MAUNDY THURSDAY, QUOTES on The HUMAN SOUL, The 5th Sorrowful Mystery - The CRUCIFIXION, The LAMB of GOD, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 1 April – Maundy Thursday – ‘ … Place all your trust in the Blood of Christ Crucified …’

One Minute Reflection – 1 April – Maundy Thursday, Evening Vigil Mass of the Lord’s Supper, Readings: Exodus 12:1-8, 11-14, Psalms 116:12-13, 15-18, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, John 13:1-15

“Jesus, knowing that his hour was come, … he loved them unto the end.” – John 13:1

REFLECTION – “Be obedient to the death, following the example of the spotless Lamb who obeyed His Father even to a shameful death on the Cross. Reflect that He is the way and the rule you are to follow. Always hold Him present before the eyes of your spirit. See how obedient He is, this Word, this Utterance of God! He does not refuse to take up the burden of suffering laid on Him by His Father; to the contrary, He throws Himself into it, spurred on by His great desire. Isn’t this what He reveals during the Last Supper on Maundy Thursday, when He says: “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer” (Lk 22:15)? By “eat this Passover” He means, the accomplishment of the Father’s will and His desire. Seeing that scarcely any time lies before Him (He was already looking ahead to the end, when He would sacrifice His body for our sake), He rejoices, He is glad and joyfully says: “I have greatly desired.” Here is the Passover He is speaking about – that which consists in giving His own self as food, in laying down His own body in obedience to the Father.

Jesus had celebrated many another Passover with His disciples but never this one, O unspeakable, sweet and burning charity! You think neither of Your suffering nor of Your humiliating death – if You had thought of them, You would not have been so joyful, You would not have called it a Passover. The Word sees ,that it is He Himself Who has been chosen, He Himself Who has received all our humanity as His spouse. He has been asked to give us His own Blood so that God’s will might be accomplished in us, so that it might be His Blood that sanctifies us. This is, indeed, the sweet Passover, this Lamb without blemish accepts (cf. Ex 12:5) and it is with great love and great desire that He fulfils the Father’s will and wholly carries out His design. What unspeakably sweet love! …

That is why, my beloved, I beg you never to entertain the least dread and to place all your trust in the Blood of Christ Crucified … May all servile fear be banished from your spirits. You will say with Saint Paul …: “I can do all things through Christ crucified, since he is within me by desire and love and he strengthens me” (cf. Phil 4:13; Gal 2:20). Love, love, love! By His Blood, the gentle Lamb has made an unassailable rock of your soul.” – St Catherine of Siena (1347-1380) Dominican tertiary, Doctor of the Church, Co-patron of Europe – Letter 129

PRAYER – Love of You, with our whole heart, Lord God, is holiness. Increase then Your gifts of divine grace in us, so that, as in Your Son’s Death, You made us hope for what we believe, You may likewise, in His Resurrection, make us come to You, our final end. Listen we beg, to the prayers of Your holy ones and may the Blessed Mother walk along with us and keep our hand, ever in hers. Through Jesus Himself, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God with You, forever and ever, amen.

Posted in HOLY WEEK, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, The LAMB of GOD, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION, The WILL of GOD

Thought for the Day – 28 March – The Lamb of God

Thought for the Day – 28 March – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Lamb of God

“Jesus had only one consolation in the midst of His terrible sufferings.
His mother, Mary was beside the Cross along with His beloved Apostle and the holy women who had always followed Him.
Mary loved her Son with a love greater than that of any mother, which is the greatest love possible on earth.
She loved Jesus with the heart of a Mother and of a Virgin – He was her only treasure.
Moreover, she loved Him, not only as her Son but, also as her God.
Precisely because she loved Him as her God, her love was in perfect harmony with the divine will.

She understood the mystery which led Jesus to accept death on the Cross – the mystery of the Redemption.
“He was offered because it was his own will” (Isa 53:7).
He was offered on our behalf, as a voluntary victim to His heavenly Father.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on UNITY, The HOLY CROSS, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The LAMB of GOD, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 27 March – ‘The Source of all Blessings …

Quote/s of the Day – 27 March – Saturday of Passion Week or the Fifth Week of Lent, Readings: First Reading: Ezekiel 37: 21-28, Responsorial Psalm: Jeremiah 31: 10, 11-12abcd, 13, Verse Before the Gospel: Ezekiel 18: 31, Gospel: John 11: 45-56

“It was to gather into one the dispersed children of God”

John 11:52

“For Your Cross is the Source of all Blessings,
the Origin of all Grace.
From the weakness of the Cross believers gain strength,
glory for shame,
life for death.
Now, too, the proliferation of sacrifices has ceased –
the one Offering of Your Body and Blood fulfills
all those different sacrifices offered throughout the world.
For You are the true Lamb of God
Who takes away the sin of the world (Jn 1:29).
In Yourself You bring to completion
all religions of all peoples,
so that all these peoples,
might make up but one Kingdom.

St Pope Leo the Great (c 400-461)
Father and Doctor Unitatis Ecclesiae

8th Homily on the Passion

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARTYRS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 21 March – ‘ … If He had not died, the grain of wheat would not be multiplied …’ John 12:20-33

One Minute Reflection – 21 March – Passion Sunday, Readings: Jeremiah 31:31-34Psalms 51:3-412-1314-15Hebrews 5:7-9John 12:20-33

“If it dies, it produces much fruit” … John 12:24

REFLECTION – “Through the glorious achievements of the holy Martyrs with which the Church blossoms everywhere, we are ourselves, proving to our own eyes, how true are the words we have been singing that:  “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” (Ps 116[115]:15).   For it is precious both in our sight and in the sight of Him, in whose name the death took place.

But the price of those deaths is the death of one man.   How many deaths did that one man purchase by His death, for, if He had not died, the grain of wheat would not be multiplied?   You heard His words when He drew near His passion, that is when He was drawing near to our redemption:  “Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone but if it dies, it bears much fruit.”   On the Cross He carried out a vast transaction, there, the purse of our price was unfastened and, when His side was opened by the lance of the soldier, there streamed the price for the redemption of the whole earth (cf. Jn 19:34).

Now the faithful ones and Martyrs have been purchased but the faithfulness of the Martyrs has been proved – their blood is the proof … “As Christ laid down his life for us, so we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren” (1Jn 3:16).   In another place it is stated:  “At a grand table you have sat;  now carefully consider what has been put before you, since it is your duty to prepare for such things” (cf. Prv 23:1).   That table is great where the Lord of the table is Himself the meal.   No-one feeds guests with Himself as food but this is exactly what the Lord Christ does, He, Himself is the host who in­vites;  He, Himself is the food and the drink.   Therefore, the Martyrs have recognised what they were eating and drink­ing so as to be able to repay such gifts.  But whence can they make such return unless He who first paid the cost, supplies the source from which restitu­tion may be made?   That is the reason for the Psalm, where we sing what is written: “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.” ... St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor – Sermon 329, for the Feast of the Martyrs, 1-2 ; PL 38, 1454

PRAYER – Lord our God, Your Son so loved the world that He gave Himself up to death for our sake. Strengthen us by Your grace and give us a heart willing to live by that same love. With Mary, the Blessed Virgin Mother of Jesus and our Mother, may we stand at His Cross. We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, with You and the Holy Spirit, one God now and forever, amen.

Posted in CHRIST the WORD, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, The HEART, The HOLY SCRIPTURES, The LAMB of GOD, The REDEMPTION, The TEN COMMANDMENTS, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 10 March – New in Old, Old through New Matthew 5:17-19

Quote/s of the Day – 10 March – Wednesday of the Third Week of Lent, Readings: Deuteronomy 4:1, 5-9, Psalms 147:12-13,15-16, 19-20, Matthew 5:17-19

“I have come, not to abolish but to fulfil.”

Matthew 5:17

“The sacrifice of the lamb,
the Passover rite and the letter of the Law,
have reached their term in Jesus Christ,
in view of Whom, everything in the ancient Law took place –
and, even more so, in the new dispensation.
For the Law became the Word;
from being old it became new …
the commandments have been transformed into Grace
and the foreshadowing into truth;
the lamb has become the Son,
the sheep has become man
and man has become God. …”

St Melito of Sardis (Died c 180)
Bishop, Apologist – Paschal Homily

“In the first instance,
the finger of God inscribed the laws on tablets of stone
but now, it is in human hearts,
that He writes it (Ex 31:18; 2 Cor 3:3).”

“The New Testament lies hidden, in the Old;
the Old is made accessible, by the New.”

St Augustine (354-430)
Father and Doctor of Grace

“When it comes to obeying the commandments
or enduring adversity,
the words uttered by the Father
should always echo in our ears –
“This is my Son, the beloved,
in whom I am well pleased,
listen to Him.”

St Pope Leo the Great (400-461)
Father and Doctor of the Church

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on Lukewarmness, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The INCARNATION, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 7 March– My Life is Christ

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

My Life is Christ

“Through the work of the Incarnation and Redemption, Jesus assumed, not only a human body and soul so that He might be loved more and so, that He might redeem us but, He also assumed a mystical body, which is composed of all men in the state of grace.
The mystical body is the Church, of which Christ is the head.
We should all desire to be members of this mystical body.
To do so, we must live the life of Christ, which is His grace.
If we are separated from the life of Christ, we are nolonger Christians.
We are merely dead and rotten limbs, to use the metaphor of the vine tree and the branches.
“I am the vine,” says Jesus, “you are the branches. He who abides in me and I in him,” He continues, “he bears much fruit. If anyone does not abide in me,” He adds, “he shall be cast outside, as the branch and wither and they shall gather them up and cast them into fire and they shall burn” (Cf Jn 15:4-5).

“For the branch,” says St Augustine, “there can be no half-measures. Either it remains united with the vine, or it is thrown into the fire.”
The same holds true for each one of us.
We must choose, either close union with Jesus, or separation and spiritual death.
We must decide between a life of fervour in Christ, or a life of tepidity and sin.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/09/14/thought-for-the-day-14-september-my-life-is-christ/

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FRUITS of the SPIRIT, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SUFFERING, The HEART, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The REDEMPTION, The WILL of GOD

Thought for the Day – 1 March – The Commandments and the Desires of Jesus Christ

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

The Commandments and the Desires of Jesus Christ

“Whoever has Jesus in his heart,” writes St Francis de Sales, “has Him also in his actions.”
If God really lives in us, He cannot be inactive but will work with us for our sanctification.
Our actions must be the actions of Jesus Christ.
Remember that the Gospel says, that a good tree will produce good fruit, while a bad tree will produce bad fruit (Cf Mt 7:17).
From the fruits which we produce, we can see clearly, if Jesus is working in us.
Holiness consists in accepting the will of God, whatever it is, whether it be sacrifice, sorrow or humiliation.
We must allow Jesus to act in us as He desires.
Not only must we conform to His holy will but, we must do so, with enthusiasm.
We must be obedient instruments of His grace, doing precisely what He wants us to do.
If He wishes us to suffer, we must be prepared to do so for Him, knowing that we are participating and, co-operating, in the work of His Redemption.
If He desires us to be happy, we should humbly accept happiness from His Hands.
Everything must be as Jesus wills.
We must transform ourselves into Him, like the white host which first is bread and through the act of consecration, becomes Jesus Christ!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/09/17/thought-for-the-day-17-september-the-commandments-and-the-desires-of-jesus-christ/

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST the WORD, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on HOLY SCRIPTURE, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The REDEMPTION, The WILL of GOD, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 28 February – Living the Gospel

Thought for the Day – 28 February – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

Living the Gospel

“The Gospel teaches perfection.
It teaches the perfection of the interior life, as well as the exterior life, of private, as well as of domestic and social life.
There is no problem in the universe, which has not been solved in the Gospel.
In regard to the spiritual life, its command is clear. “You are to be perfect, even as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Mt 5:48).
“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart and with thy whole soul and with they whole mind … Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Mt 22:37, Mk 12:30, Lk 10:27).
“This is my commandment, that you love one another, as I have loved you” (Jn 15:12).
“If anyone wishes to come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me” (Lk 9:23).
“Blessed are the poor in spirit … the clean of heart … the peacemakers …” (Mt 5:3-10).
“If thou wilt be perfect, go, sell what thou hast and give to the poor and thou shall have treasure in heaven” (Mt 19:21).
“Our Father who art in heaven … thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven” (Mt 6:10).
“Father … not my will but thine be done” (Lk 22:42).
Anyone who identifies himself with these maxims, rises above the level of a man, to that of an angel.
His interior life soars to such a peak, that he seems to be leading a heavenly, rather than an earthly existence.
If he is living the Gospel, moreover, his external behaviour will be a faithful mirror of his interior life, for it is not enough to say “Lord, Lord” but a man must also do the will of the Father (Cf Mt 7:21).
A man’s domestic and social life, will follow the pattern of his private life.

When he has reached the summit of perfection, an invisible force will emanate from him, the force of good example.
This force will transform everything, within him and around him.
Like Mary and the Saints, he will become the loyal and powerful co-worker of Christ in the redemption of the human race and in the Christian transformation of society.
Redemption and restoration, can come only through the Gospel.
Other theories are always bound up with and impeded by, human egoism.
The doctrine of the Gospel is reinforced by the love of God and our neighbour.
In the Gospel, public and private justice is transformed into the charity of Christ which cannot be impeded by any earthly difficulty, nor by any human barrier, not even by death.
“Who shall separate us from the charity of Christ?” (Rom 8:35) asks St Paul.
Let us meditate on this.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

PART ONE HERE:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/05/28/thought-for-the-day-28-may-living-the-gospel/

Posted in DIVINE MERCY, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DESPAIR, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HOPE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 24 September – Faith and Hope

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

Faith and Hope

“Christian hope derives from faith.
When we believe in the infinitely good and merciful God, Who was made man for us and Who shed His Precious Blood, for our salvation, we experience a great hope and a great confidence.
No matter how numerous our sins and our defects, as long as we are sincerely repentant, we should continue to hope for the forgiveness of God.
Despair, which led Judas to commit suicide, should never be allowed to enter our minds.
Like the penitent Magdalen, like the prodigal son, like the lost sheep and, like the good thief, let us trust in Jesus with faith, hope and sorrow for our sins.
Let us remember, that He is infinitely good and merciful and ardently desires to pardon us.
Together with this hope of God’s forgiveness, we should nurture the hope of gaining Heaven, which the Lord, in His infinite goodness, has promised, not only to innocent souls but, also to repentant sinners.
In order that this hope may not be in vain, however, we should include, in our repentance for our sins, a firm purpose of amendment.

Let us remember, that the more we hope for, the more we shall obtain!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One Here:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/09/25/thought-for-the-day-24-september-faith/

Posted in JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on JUSTICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on VIRTUE, The BEATITUDES, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 19 January – The Thirst for Justice

Thought for the Day – 19 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

The Thirst for Justice

“Jesus commands us, in the Beatitudes, to seek justice, that is perfection in the fulfilment of our obligations to God, to ourselves and, to our neighbour.
He commands us, to hunger and thirst for this justice, which is identical with holiness.

When Christ tells us to hunger and thirst for justice, He imposes on us, the obligation of doing our very best to acquire the virtue of Christian justice, which is the sythesis of all the virtues.
We must be aware, therefore, of laziness, apathy, tepidity, or mediocrity, for our advance in spiritual perfection, must be continuous.
There must be no hesitation or backsliding.
The high target which God has set for us, demands hard work and boundless generosity on our part.
Jesus Christ loved us so much that He gave Himself entirely for us and shed His Precious Blood to the last drop, for our Redemption.
How can we possibly be niggardly or half-hearted in our relatioas with Him?

Whenever God’s cause is at stake, whether in our efforts to achieve our own spiritual perfection or in the fulfilment of our obliations towards our neighbour, we should never refuse anything but, should display absolute dedication to God and to our fellow-man.
“Let us hunger,” said St Catherine of Siena, “for God’s honour and for the salvation of souls” (Vrev di perfezioe, p81).
The hunger and thirst for justice, nourished by the love of God and of our neighbour, should exclude all mediocrity and selfishness from our lives.
It should urge us on, as it did the Saints, towards the highest pinnacles of sanctity.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DIVINE MERCY, JULY - The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 16 January – I Am Not Able

Thought for the Day – 16 January – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)

I Am Not Able

“Whenever we feel called upon to make some sacrifice for Jesus or, to form some good resolution, how often do we cry: “I am not able!”
It may be a question of praying more fervently, of performing some mortification or, of helping our neighbour spiritually or materially.
Or perhaps, it is a matter of saying a few words of apology or, of encouragement to our neighbour, whom we have previously treated with coldness and selfishness.
Or. it may be something entirely more generous which is demanded; it may be that God is inviting us to renounce ourselves completely and to dedicate ourselves to Him.
Naturally, this requires sacrifice and great generosity of heart.
But we say to Jesus when He calls us: “I cannot, it is too difficult!”
And yet, the Lord says: “You shall make and keep yourselves holy because, I am holy” (Lev 11:44).
“You, therefore, are to be perfect, even as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Mt 5:48).
We must not refuse God, Who became man for us in his love and mercy and shed His blood for our redemption!”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One here:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/09/05/thought-for-the-day-5-september-i-am-not-able/

Posted in DIVINE MERCY, DOCTORS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on MERCY, QUOTES on MERIT, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, SACRED HEART REFLECTIONS, The REDEMPTION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 14 January – “I will, be clean.”

One Minute Reflection – 14 January – Thursday of the First week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Hebrews 3:7-14, Psalms 95:6-7, 8-9, 10-11, Mark 1:40-45

“If you will, you can make me clean.” Moved with pity, he stretched out his hand and touched him and said to him, “I will, be clean.” – Mark 1: 40-41

REFLECTION – “As for me, what can I appropriate that I lack, from the Heart of the Lord who abounds in mercy? … He was thinking thoughts of peace and I did not know it, for who knows the mind of the Lord, or who has been His counsellor? But the piercing nail has become a key to unlock the door, that I may see the goodwill of the Lord. And what can I see as I look through the hole? Both the nail and the wound cry out, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself. The sword pierced His soul and came close to His Heart, so that He might be able to feel compassion for me in my weaknesses.

Through these sacred wounds we can see the secret of His Heart, the great mystery of love, the sincerity of His mercy, with which He visited us from on high. Where have Your love, Your mercy, Your compassion shone out more luminously, than in Your wounds, sweet, gentle Lord of mercy? More mercy than this no-one has, than that He lay down His life for those who are doomed to death.

My merit comes from His mercy; for I do not lack merit so long as He does not lack pity. And if the Lord’s mercies are many, then I am rich in merits. For even if I am aware of many sins, what does it matter? Where sin abounded grace has overflowed. And if the Lord’s mercies are from all ages forever, I too will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever. Will I not sing of my own righteousness? No, Lord, I shall be mindful only of Your justice. Yet that too is my own, for God has made You my righteousness.” – St Bernard of Clarirvaux (1090-1153) Doctor of Light – Excerpt from his Sermon 61 On the Song of Songs

PRAYER – Almighty, ever-living God, we make our prayer to You at morning, noon and evening. Dispel from our hearts, the darkness of sin and bring us to the true light, Christ Your Son. Grant that through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, all your Angels and Saints, we may deny ourselves in love and obedience to You the reward of our love. Through Jesus, our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever and ever, amen.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD the FATHER, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on ETERNITY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The PASSION, The REDEMPTION

Quote/s of the Day – 13 January – St Hilary

Quote/s of the Day – 13 January – The Memorial of St Hilary of Poitiers (315-368) Father & Doctor of the Church

“He conquered death,
broke the gates of hell,
won for Himself a people
to be His co-heirs,
lifted flesh from corruption
up to the glory of eternity.”

“There is no space where God is not;
space does not exist apart from Him.
He is in heaven, in hell,
beyond the seas;
dwelling in all things and enveloping all.
Thus He embraces
and is embraced by, the universe,
confined to no part of it
but pervading all.”

“The utter folly of our time is lamentable,
that men should think.
to assist God with human help
and to protect the Church of Christ
by worldly ambition.”

“The Son of God is nailed to the Cross
but on the Cross,
God conquers human death.
Christ, the Son of God, dies
but all flesh is made alive in Christ.
The Son of God is in hell
but man is carried back to heaven.”

St Hilary of Poitiers (315-368)
Father & Doctor of the Church

More here:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/01/13/quote-s-of-the-day-13-january-the-memorial-of-st-hilary-of-poitiers-315-368-father-doctor-of-the-church/
And:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/01/13/quote-s-of-the-day-13-january-st-hilary/

Posted in "Follow Me", MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on EVANGELISATION, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SELF-DENIAL, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The HOLY CROSS, The KINGDOM of GOD, The REDEMPTION

Thought for the Day – 11 January – The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian

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

The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian

“This exalted dignity carries with it grave obligations.
The most important is to avoid sin.
Who could dare to take the Crucifix and fling it in the mud?
“You are the body of Christ,” St Paul tells us, “member for member” (Cf 1 Cor 12:27).
A man who surrenders himself to sin, therefore, throws the body of Christ into the mud and profanes the temple of the Holy Spirit.
If we sincerely appreciate our dignity as Christians, we cannot possibly give way to sin and destroy, in ourselves, the great work of the Redemption of Christ.
We should, moreover, practise virtue.
We should live in and for Jesus, like St Paul, who said, “For to me to live is Christ … ” (Phil 1:21).
Everyday, we must travel further along the difficult road of self-denial and love.
We must keep going forward, higher and higher towards the summit of perfection.
“You are to be perfect,” Jesus tells us, “even as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Mt 5:48).
Even this is not enough, however!
A genuine Christian is not satisfied with avoiding sin and sanctifying himself but, he tries, by every means at his disposal, by word, action, good example and sacrifice, to spread the Kingdom of Christ among his fellow-men.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Part One of ‘The Dignity and Responsibility of Being a Christian’ here:
https://anastpaul.com/2020/04/29/thought-for-the-day-29-april-the-dignity-and-responsibility-of-being-a-christian/

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, CHRISTMASTIDE!, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, The DIVINE INFANT, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The INCARNATION, The LAMB of GOD, The NATIVITY of JESUS, The REDEMPTION

Quote/s of the Day – 24 December – The Nativity of the Lord

Quote/s of the Day – 24 December – The Nativity of the Lord, Mass at Midnight

… Let us keep the Feast,
not after the manner of a heathen festival
but after a godly sort;
not after the way of the world
but in a fashion above the world;
not as our own
but as belonging to Him
who is ours,
or rather as our Master’s;
not as of weakness
but as of healing;
not as of creation
but of re-creation.”

St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390)
Archbishop of Constantinople
Father and Doctor of the Church

“Jesus Christ, the God-Man,
was born in a manger
and is spiritually reborn on the altar.
He suffered on Calvary
and continues to offer Himself on the altar.
In His earthly life, He spread His teaching
and worked miracles among the crowds.
In the Eucharist, He spans the centuries
and communicates Himself to all.”

St John Chrysostom (347-407)
Father & Doctor of the Church

“… For God it was too small a thing
that His Son should show us the way,
He made of Him the Way (cf Jn 14:6),
the Way by which you would go
under His direction,
the Way you would follow…”

“Awake, mankind!
For your sake God has become man.
Awake, you who sleep,
rise up from the dead
and Christ will enlighten you.
I tell you again,
for your sake,
God became man.”

St Augustine 354-430)
Great Latin Father
and Doctor of the Church

Posted in "Follow Me", ADVENT REFLECTIONS, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The DIVINE INFANT, The HEART, The MOST PRECIOUS BLOOD, The REDEMPTION, The WILL of GOD

Thought for the Day – 23 December – What Jesus Wants From Us

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

What Jesus Wants From Us

“Let us contemplate Jesus lying on a rough pallet of straw in the manger.
When we see Him looking at us, let us ask ourselves what it is that He requires of us.
In fact, He wants many things from us.
First of all, He wants us to weep for our sins and to promise, never to fall again, as long as we have the assistance of His grace, for which we should pray continually.
For this, He has become man and has entered into the world.
For this He will work miracles, preach His doctrine and shed His Precious Blood on the Cross.
All this He will do to redeem us from sin and to win Heaven for us.

If we return to the path of sin, we destroy the divine work of redemption, inasfar as it applies to ourselves.
We make Christ’s passion, death and resurrection useless in our case.
We brush aside the chain of favours with which His love has girdled us – the Gospel, the Sacraments and the Church, our good mother who is always at our side to instruct and direct us, to rescue us from peril and, to distribute to us, the gifts of her divine Founder.
When we sin, we commit an act of base ingratitude to Jesus and accomplish our own eternal ruin.

The Infant Jesus longs for us to give our hearts to Him.
Since He has given us His own, why should we be unwilling to give ours to Him?
Who or what can we love, if we do not love Jesus?
Nothing else is capable of giving us peace of soul and resignation in suffering.
Jesus alone can bestow these gifts on us, as long as we love and follow Him and abandon ourselves completely to His Holy Will.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci

Posted in ADVENT REFLECTIONS, GOD ALONE!, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, MARY'S MONTH, MEDITATIONS - ANTONIO CARD BACCI, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The DIVINE INFANT, The INCARNATION, The REDEMPTION, The WILL of GOD

Thought for the Day – 22 December – The Humility of Mary

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

The Humility of Mary

“The profound humility of Mary was commensurate with her high dignity.
As Dante put it, she was the humblest and noblest of creatures. “Umile ed altra piu che creatura” (Paradiso 33:2)
None of the saints was humbler than Mary, just as none of them was greater.
It was an Archangel who came down from Heaven and bowed before her as he praised her in the highest terms as “full of grace” and announced the unique dignity she was to receive as Mother of God.
She bowed her head in turn and declared herself to be the handmaid of the Lord, ready to do His will in all things.
Then she went to visit and congratulate her cousin, Elizabeth, because she had heard from the Angel that she was to be the mother of the Precursor.
When she arrived at the house, she was greeted by Elizabeth with the words: “How have I deserved that the mother of my Lord should come to me?”
Far from being flattered, however, Mary attributed all her glory to God and replied with the Magnificat, a hymn of praise and gratitude in God’s honour.
It was the same when Jesus was born in the manger at Bethlehem.
There was a sudden brightness in the sky and the angels sang “Glory to God in the highest and on earth, peace among men of goodwill.”
But even though she held the Lord of Heaven and earth, in her arms, the Blessed Virgin asked for nothing for herself.
Her only desire was to do the will of God.
The love of Jesus was enough for her.
She did not seek her own glory but the glory of God.
Likewise, on the weary journey into Egypt, she was content because, she was with Jesus and in the obscure life of Nazareth, she desired no other treasure but Her divine Son.
During His public life, she followed Him in silence.
Once only she spoke in a submissive tone, in order to ask a favour for others but not for herself.
It was at the wedding celebrations in Cana, when she asked for the first miracle, in such a way, that it was not even apparent that it was she who had wrung the favour from the filial heart of Jesus.
It was always like that, up to the time of Calvary and the Resurrection, the Ascension and Pentecost.
She remained humbly in the background all the time.
Now, after her departure from this earth, her humility has been gloriously crowned in the dogma of the Assumption and in her Coronation as Queen of Angels and of Saints.”

Antonio Cardinal Bacci