Posted in MARIAN TITLES, SAINT of the DAY

Plague in Rome ends after Saint Pope Gregory the Great leads a procession with a painting of Our Lady by Saint Luke (591) and Memorials of the Saints – 24 February

Plague in Rome ends after Saint Pope Gregory the Great leads a procession with a painting of Our Lady by Saint Luke (591): – 24 February

The Abbot Orsini wrote: “On this day, in the year 591, St Gregory the Great, having had the picture of Our Lady, which was painted by St Luke, carried in procession, the plague ceased at Rome.”

The miseries that afflicted Rome in the year 591 were substantial. The Gothic War between the Byzantine Empire and the Goths had substantially depopulated Italy, so much so that a Germanic tribe of Lombards had entered the peninsula and established their own kingdom. They were pagans and Arians who did not respect Catholics, burning the famous Benedictine Monastery of Monte Cassino and pillaging the land at will.
The instability and warfare caused famine in large regions, though Rome was still able to obtain grain by sea. Then came earthquakes and flooding to further the suffering, and from this plague Rome was not immune. The banks of the Tiber overflowed and when the waters did not recede, all of the low-lying lands became swamps that brought death and the plague. The disease struck with such rapidity that the victim would often die shortly after realising he had contracted the disease, although there were some who sickened but recovered. Our custom of saying, “God Bless you,” to someone who sneezes came about at this time, for sneezing was one of the signs that someone had contracted the disease.
Even the Roman Pontiff died of the plague on 7 February 590. His successor, was Pope Saint Gregory the Great, who was both a humble and pious man. It would be an understatement to say he did not want the honour of being the next Pope but once in that position, he did everything in his power to try to save his people. He understood that the plague was a chastisement from God and encouraged the faithful to repent of their sins and pray for deliverance while he and the religious cared for the people of Rome.
Finally, Saint Gregory called for a procession to take place at dawn on 24 April. On that day, the faithful first assembled in their groups throughout Rome and then walked through the streets of the City praying and singing as they approached the Church of Saint Mary Major. The plague was so potent at that time, that eighty people collapsed and died as they walked toward the meeting place.
Pope Saint Gregory met them upon their arrival, joining them in prayer as he took his place with them holding aloft the miraculous image of Our Lady painted by Saint Luke the Evangelist. This image is the very famous, Salus Populi Romani (the health or salvation, of the Roman People) As the procession neared the Vatican the participants all saw Saint Michael the archangel standing upon the cupola of Hadrian’s mausoleum as he sheathed his flaming sword. It was a sign that the chastisement had come to an end and, at once, the heaviness in the air abated and the air itself seemed to freshen and clear. Indeed, at that moment the plague ended, as the faithful rejoiced and lifted up their voices to thank the Mother of God.

Regina Coeli laetare, Alleluia! (Queen of heaven, rejoice, Alleluia!)

Quia quem meruisti portare, Alleluia! (Son whom you merited to bear, Alleluia!)

Resurrexit sicut dixit, Alleluia! (He has risen as He said, Alleluia!)


St Adela of Blois
Bl Antonio Taglia
Bl Arnold of Carcassonne
St Betto of Auxerre
Bl Berta of Busano
Bl Constantius of Fabriano OP (1401-1481)
Biography
:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/02/24/saint-of-the-day-24-february-blessed-constantius-of-fabriano-op-1401-1481/
St Cummian Albus of Iona
St Ethelbert of Kent (552-616) King and Confessor
Evetius of Nicomedia
Blessed Ascensión of the Heart of Jesus/Florentina Nicol y Goñi OP (1868-1940)
Her Story:

https://anastpaul.com/2020/02/24/saint-of-the-day-24-february-blessed-ascension-of-the-heart-of-jesus-op-1868-1940/
Bl Ida of Hohenfels
Bl Josefa Naval Girbes
St Liudhard
Bl Lotario Arnari
Bl Marco De’ Marconi
St Modestus of Trier
St Peter the Librarian
St Praetextatus of Rouen
St Primitiva
St Sergius of Caesarea
Bl Simon of Saint Bertin
Blessed Tommaso Maria Fusco (1831-1891)
Blessed Tommaso;s life:
https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/24/saint-of-the-day-24-february-blessed-thomas-mary-fusco-and-tommaso-maria-fusco-1831-1891/

Posted in DOMINICAN OP, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HAPPINESS, QUOTES on PEACE, SAINT of the DAY

Quote of the Day – 24 February – ‘The secret of peace and happiness …’

Quote of the Day – 24 February – The Memorial of Blessed Ascensión of the Heart of Jesus OP (1868-1940)

“The secret of peace and happiness,
is found in one’s self-denial,
in emptying oneself
and letting everything
be filled by God’s love.”

Blessed Ascensión of the Heart of Jesus (1868-1940)

the secret of peace and happiness bl ascension of the heart of jesus 24 feb 2020

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 24 February – “I do believe, help my unbelief!”

One Minute Reflection – 24 February – Monday of the Seventh Week of Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: : James 3:13-18, Psalm 19:8-10, 15, Mark 9:14-29 and the Memorial of Blessed Ascensión of the Heart of Jesus OP (1868-1940)

“I do believe, help my unbelief!” … Mark 9:25

REFLECTION – “Cast off doubt from yourself and do not hesitate at all to ask God for anything, or say in yourself, “How can I ask anything from the Lord and receive it, when I have sinned so much against Him?”   Do not reason thus but turn to the Lord with your whole heart and ask of Him undoubtingly and you will come to know His great mercy, that He will not desert you but will fulfil the request of your soul.   For God is not like us, who hold grudges but He is forgiving and feels pity for what He has made.   So cleanse your heart of all the vanities of this world, of evil and sin and ask the Lord and you will receive everything, (…) if you ask the Lord without doubting.

But if you doubt in your heart, you will receive none of your requests.   For those who doubt in their relation to God are the waverers and do not get any of their requests at all. (…)   For anyone who wavers, if they do not repent, can be saved only with difficulty.   So cleanse your heart of wavering and clothe yourself in faith, for it is strong and trust God that you will receive all that you ask for and if ever, when you have asked the Lord for something, you are somewhat slow in receiving it, do not doubt, because you did not receive your soul’s request quickly, for surely, it is on account of some temptation or some transgression of which you are unaware, that you are slow in getting what you asked for.   So do not stop making your soul’s request (…)   Beware of such wavering, for it is wicked and foolish and uproots many from the faith, even those who are very faithful and strong (…)  Clothe yourself in strong and powerful faith, for faith promises all things and accomplishes all things but doubt distrusts itself and fails in everything it undertakes.” … St Hermas (2nd century) The Shepherd (*SEE NOTE ON ST HERMAS BELOW).mark 9 25 i do believe, help my unbelief - so cleanse your heart st hermas 24 feb 2020

PRAYER – King of heaven and earth, Lord God, rule over our hearts and bodies this day. Sanctify us and guide our every thought, word and deed, according to the commandments of Your law.   Grant us the grace of true faith and a steadfast trust, so that now and forever, Your grace may free and save us.   May the prayers of all your saints and Blessed Ascension of the Heart of Jesus for her intercession, be a help to keep us ever strong in faith, hope and love.   Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God now and for all eternity, amen.bl ascensionof the heart of jesus pray for us 24 feb 2020

It has been written that St Hermas was one of the 72 followers mentioned in Luke 10 that Jesus sent out to preach.    He was a well-to-do freedman and earnest Christian, who lived in Ancient Rome.   He was the brother of Pope Pius I, Bishop of Rome about the middle of the 2nd century.   Some later writers confuse him with Hermas of Dalmatia, mentioned in Romans 16:14.   Hermas, the freedman, was the character and the author of the work titled The Shepherd of Hermas (or just The Shepherd), which, by some of the early Church fathers such as St Irenaeus, was sometimes classed among the canonical “Scriptures.”

Greet Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, Hermas and the brothers who are with them. ―Romans 16:14

Posted in DOMINICAN OP, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 24 February – Blessed Ascensión of the Heart of Jesus OP (1868-1940)

Saint of the Day – 24 February – Blessed Ascensión of the Heart of Jesus OP (1868-1940)
a Spanish Religious sister of the Order of St Dominic, Teacher, Missionary.   She co-founded and was the first Prioress General of the Congregation of Dominican Missionary Sisters of the Rosary, which she helped to found in Peru.   Born as Florentina Nicol y Goni on 14 March 1868 in Tafalla, Navarre, Spain and died on 24 February 1940 in Peru of natural causes.   Also known as Maria Ascension Nicol y Goñi, Mother Ascension del Corazon de Jesus, Mother Ascensión Nicol Goñi, Florentina Nicol Goni.  Patronage- Dominican Missionary Sisters of the Rosary.bl ascensin-nicol-y-goi-1a7c0c93-b903-460c-9a63-ba5423478f8-resize-750

Florentina was the youngest of four children.   She was educated at Saint Rose of Lima Dominican boarding school in Huesca, where she was first introduced to the religious life, which raised questions in her mind about her future.   Returning home for a year to reflect on her choices, she later returned to the monastery and became a nun of the Dominican Second Order in 1885, taking the name “Maria Ascension of the Heart of Jesus”.   She became a teacher at that school in 1886 and served in that capacity for the next 27 years.   Under the anti-clerical laws promulgated in the early 20th century, however, in 1913 the Spanish government took over the school and expelled the Sisters.

Bl. Ascensión of the Heart of Jesus is one of the great missionaries of the last century. From her youth, she viewed life as a gift for the Lord and for her neighbour and she wanted to marry no-one except God, to whom she consecrated herself as a Dominican Missionary Sister at the monastery of St Rose in Huesca, Spain.   She lived unreservedly the dynamism of charity which the Holy Spirit generates in those who are open to Him in their hearts.

The first part of her apostolate consisted of being a teacher in the school connected to the monastery.   Testimonials recall her as an excellent educator, amiable and strong, understanding and exacting.

But the Lord had different plans in store for her.   At age 45, he called her to become a missionary in Peru.   With youthful enthusiasm and total trust in Providence, she left her Country and dedicated herself to the evangelisation of the world, beginning on the American Continent.  Her work was so generous, vast and efficacious that it left a profound mark on the missionary history of the Church.

She collaborated with the Dominican Bishop, Ramon Zubieta, in founding the Dominican Missionary Sisters of the Rosary, of which she was the first Superior General.   Her missionary life was rich in sacrifices, hardships and apostolic fruits.   She made many apostolic trips to Peru, to Europe and she even went to China.   She had the temperament of an intrepid and tireless fighter, together with a maternal tenderness that was capable of conquering hearts.   Driven by charity for Christ, she showed to all, the charisms of spiritual motherhood.

Sustained by a living faith and by a fervent devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and to Our Lady of the Rosary, she dedicated herself to the salvation of souls, even to the sacrifice of her very self.   And she frequently urged her Daughters to do the same, saying that souls are not saved without sacrificing themselves.   She inspired an ever more pure and intense charity and for this, she offered herself as a victim to the Merciful Love of God.

She also established her congregation in Spain where they were able to recruit and form many missionary vocations.   The General Motherhouse of the congregation was established in Pamplona, Navarre, Spain, and became her base.bl Ascensión_Nicol_Goñi

By 1938 Mother Ascension felt increasingly frail and wanted to retire to prepare herself for her final days.   Nevertheless, she accepted her unanimous re-election for a third term as Prioress General at the congregation’s General Chapter of 1939.   She died on 24 February 1940.

Today the congregation has 785 Sisters serving in 21 nations on five continents.  It’s General Motherhouse is now in Madrid, Spain.   Among its members, the congregation counts four Sisters who are considered to be martyrs for the faith, having been tortured and murdered in the former Republic of the Congo on 25 November 1964, in the course of the Simba Rebellion, after they refused to leave the patients in their hospital.

She was Beatified on 14 May 2005 by Pope Benedict XVI.   The Recognition Celebration was celebrated by Cardinal Saraiva Martins in Saint Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City.

Posted in DOMINICAN OP, SAINT of the DAY, Uncategorized

Memorials of the Saints – 24 February

St Adela of Blois
Bl Antonio Taglia
Bl Arnold of Carcassonne
St Betto of Auxerre
Bl Berta of Busano
Bl Constantius of Fabriano OP (1401-1481)
Biography:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/02/24/saint-of-the-day-24-february-blessed-constantius-of-fabriano-op-1401-1481/
St Cummian Albus of Iona
St Ethelbert of Kent
Evetius of Nicomedia
Blessed Ascensión of the Heart of Jesus/Florentina Nicol y Goñi OP (1868-1940)
Bl Ida of Hohenfels
Bl Josefa Naval Girbes
St Liudhard
Bl Lotario Arnari
Bl Marco De’ Marconi
St Modestus of Trier
St Peter the Librarian
St Praetextatus of Rouen
St Primitiva
St Sergius of Caesarea
Bl Simon of Saint Bertin
Blessed Tommaso Maria Fusco (1831-1891)

Blessed Tommaso;s life:   https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/24/saint-of-the-day-24-february-blessed-thomas-mary-fusco-and-tommaso-maria-fusco-1831-1891/