Posted in MARIAN TITLES, MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY

Our Lady of Louvain, Belgium (1444) “Sedes Sapientia” and Memorials of the Saints – 6 February

Our Lady of Louvain, Belgium (1444) – 6 February:

The Abbot Orsini wrote: “This Virgin, in high veneration in that country, began to work miracles in the year 1444.”
Saint Peter’s Church, or Sint-Pieterskerk, is the oldest Church in Leuven, Belgium, having been founded in about 986. The first Church burned to the ground but the present Gothic style Church was begun in 1425. The Church suffered severe damage during both world wars, as in 1914 the roof and nave were burned and in 1944 the north aisle suffered bomb damage.
The Church of Saint Peter, is the home of Our Lady of Louvain, or the Virgin of Louvain, a statue of the Blessed Virgin and her Divine Son also called the Sedes Sapientiae, or Seat of Wisdom. The Virgin of Louvain is a wooden statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary carved by Nicolaas De Bruyne in 1442. It was a larger facsimile of an earlier statue dating from the 13th century. That statue was completely destroyed during the Second World War and not by the Fascists or Nazis but instead, by allied bombs. It is a replica of Bruyne’s famous statue that is currently on display in the church.

Nicolaas de Bruyne, 1442, Leuven, Pieterskerk

Sedes Sapientiae is a specific title for the statue of Our Lady of Louvain but it is also a type of Christian iconography of the Blessed Mother, which depicts the Blessed Virgin seated upon a throne with the Christ Child in her lap. This type of representation of the Blessed Mother became, especially popular, early in the 13th century and, the throne she sits upon, usually has some depiction of lions and the Blessed Virgin’s feet are usually shown resting upon a stool and for good reason.
The “Seat of Wisdom” is a title of Mary that many Catholics will recognise from the Litany of Loreto. It was no less a luminary than Saint Peter Damian, who in the 11th century said of the Blessed Virgin Mary that she “is herself that wondrous throne referred to in the Book of Kings.” In this, he was alluding to Solomon’s throne, the throne of the King renowned throughout history, for his wisdom. His throne was of ivory overlaid with the finest gold. “It had six steps and the top of the throne was round behind and there were two hands on either side, holding the seat and two lions stood, one at each hand. And twelve little lions stood upon the six steps on the one side and on the other: there was no such work made in any kingdom.” (Third Book of Kings, Chapter 10: 18-20).
She is descended from the noble lineage of David. As the Mother of God, the “Seat of Wisdom,” the vessel of the Incarnation, who carried and gave birth to the second person of the Blessed Trinity, she, herself is, in a certain sense, the throne upon which the Son of God reigns.
This symbol, the Sedes Sapientiae, has become the seal for the Catholic University of Leuven. It bears the motto: “Universitas Catholica Lovaniensis. Sedes Sapientiae,” which is Latin for Catholic University of Leuven. Seat of Wisdom.”

St Paul Miki SJ (1564/65-1597) & Companions/Martyrs of Nagasaki – 26 saints (Memorial)
Their story:

https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/02/06/saints-of-the-day-6-february-st-paul-miki-companions-26-martyrs-of-nagasaki/

St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)
Biography:

https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/06/saint-of-the-day-6-february-st-alfonso-maria-fusco-1839-1910/

St Amand of Maastricht (c 584-c 679) Bishop, The Apostle of Belgium
St Amand of Moissac
St Amand of Nantes
St Andrew of Elnone
Bl Angelus of Furci
St Antholian of Auvergne
St Brinolfo Algotsson
Cassius of Auvergne
Bl Diego de Azevedo
St Dorothy of Caesarea (c 279/290-311) Martyr
The Life of St Dorothea:

https://anastpaul.com/2019/02/06/saint-of-the-day-6-february-st-dorothy-of-caesarea-died-311-virgin-martyr/

St Ethelburga of Wessex
Bl Francesca of Gubbio
St Francesco Spinelli (1853-1913)
His Life:

https://anastpaul.com/2020/02/06/saint-of-the-day-6-february-saint-francesco-spinelli-1853-1913/

St Gerald of Ostia
St Gonsalo Garcia OFM
St Guarinus
St Guethenoc
St Hildegund
St Ina of Wessex
St Jacut
St Liminius of Auvergne
Bl Mary Teresa Bonzel
St Mateo Correa-Magallanes
St Maximus of Aurvergne
St Mel of Ardagh
St Melchu of Armagh
St Mun of Lough Ree
St Relindis of Eyck
St Revocata
St Saturninus
St Tanco of Werden
St Theophilus
St Theophilus the Lawyer
St Vaast of Arras
St Victorinus of Auvergne

Martyrs of Emesa:
St Luke the Deacon
St Mucius the Lector
St Silvanus of Emesa

Posted in MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 6 February

St Paul Miki SJ (1564/65-1597) & Companions/Martyrs of Nagasaki – 26 saints (Memorial)
Their story:
https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/02/06/saints-of-the-day-6-february-st-paul-miki-companions-26-martyrs-of-nagasaki/

St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)
Biography:
https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/06/saint-of-the-day-6-february-st-alfonso-maria-fusco-1839-1910/

St Amand of Maastricht (c 584-c 679)
St Amand of Moissac
St Amand of Nantes
St Andrew of Elnone
Bl Angelus of Furci
St Antholian of Auvergne
St Brinolfo Algotsson
Cassius of Auvergne
Bl Diego de Azevedo
St Dorothy of Caesarea (c 279/290-311) Martyr
The Life of St Dorothea:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/02/06/saint-of-the-day-6-february-st-dorothy-of-caesarea-died-311-virgin-martyr/

St Ethelburga of Wessex
Bl Francesca of Gubbio
St Francesco Spinelli (1853-1913)

St Gerald of Ostia
St Guarinus
St Guethenoc
St Hildegund
St Ina of Wessex
St Jacut
St Liminius of Auvergne
Bl Mary Teresa Bonzel
St Mateo Correa-Magallanes
St Maximus of Aurvergne
St Mel of Ardagh
St Melchu of Armagh
St Mun of Lough Ree
St Relindis of Eyck
St Revocata
St Saturninus
St Tanco of Werden
St Theophilus
St Theophilus the Lawyer
St Vaast of Arras
St Victorinus of Auvergne

Martyrs of Emesa:
St Luke the Deacon
St Mucius the Lector
St Silvanus of Emesa

Posted in MORNING Prayers, ON the SAINTS, PAPAL HOMILIES, PAPAL PRAYERS, QUOTES on PRAYER, SAINT of the DAY

Second Thought for the Day – 6 February – The Memorial of St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)

Second Thought for the Day – 6 February – The Memorial of St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)

“At the start of today’s celebration, we addressed this prayer to the Lord: “Create in us a generous and steadfast heart, so that we may always serve you with fidelity and purity of spirit” (Collect).

By our own efforts, we cannot give ourselves such a heart. Only God can do this and so in the prayer we ask him to give it to us as his “creation”.   In this way, we come to the theme of prayer, which is central to this Sunday’s scriptural readings and challenges all of us who are gathered here for the canonisation of new Saints.   The Saints attained the goal.   Thanks to prayer, they had a generous and steadfast heart.   They prayed mightily, they fought and they were victorious.

The saints are men and women who enter fully into the mystery of prayer.  Men and women who struggle with prayer, letting the Holy Spirit pray and struggle in them.   They struggle to the very end, with all their strength and they triumph but not by their own efforts:  the Lord triumphs in them and with them.   The seven witnesses who were canonised today also fought the good fight of faith and love by their prayers.   That is why they remained firm in faith, with a generous and steadfast heart.   Through their example and their intercession, may God also enable us to be men and women of prayer. May we cry out day and night to God, without losing heart.   May we let the Holy Spirit pray in us and may we support one another in prayer, in order to keep our arms raised, until Divine Mercy wins the victory.”

Homily of HH Pope Francis – St Peter’s Square – Sunday 16 October 2016 – HOLY MASS AND CANONISATION OF THE BLESSEDS:  Salomon Leclercq, José Sánchez del Río, Manuel González García, Lodovico Pavoni, Alfonso Maria Fusco, José Gabriel del Rosario Brochero, Elisabeth of the Holy Trinity Catez

Holy Saints in Heaven, Pray for us!holy saints pray for us - 6 FEB 2018

Posted in MARTYRS, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 6 February – The Memorial of St Paul Miki S.J. (1564/65-1597) & Companions – 26 Martyrs of Nagasaki and St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)

Quote/s of the Day – 6 February – The Memorial of St Paul Miki S.J. (1564/65-1597) & Companions – 26 Martyrs of Nagasaki and St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)

“The only reason for my being killed, is that I have taught the doctrine of Christ.    I thank God it is for this reason that I die.    I believe that I am telling the truth before I die.   I know you believe me and I want to say to you all once again – ask Christ to help you become happy.   I obey Christ.   After Christ’s example, I forgive my persecutors. I do not hate them.   I ask God to have pity on all and I hope my blood will fall on my fellow men as a fruitful rain.”the only reason - st paul miki - nagasaki martyr - 6 feb 2018

“Like my Master I shall die upon the cross.   Like Him, a lance will pierce my heart so that my blood and my love can flow out upon the land and sanctify it to His name.”

St Paul Miki (1564/65-1597)like my master - st paul miki - 6 feb 2018

“The Work is God’s;
I am His worker;
God began it.
For God I shall continue it.
God wanted this Work done
and He obliged me to do it.
God will provide.”the work is god's - st alfonso maria fusco - 6 feb 2018

“This is the scope of our lives,
to sanctify ourselves through love.”

St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)this is the scope of our lives - st alfonso fusco - 6 feb 2018

Posted in MORNING Prayers, ON the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, STATIONS of the CROSS

One Minute Reflection – – 6 February – The Memorial of St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)

One Minute Reflection – – 6 February – The Memorial of St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)

The Lord replied, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to [this] mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea’ and it would obey you…Luke 17:6

REFLECTION – “It was a genuine and tenacious faith that guided the work and life of Bl Alfonso Maria Fusco, founder of the Sisters of St John the Baptist.   From when he was a young man, the Lord put into his heart the passionate desire to dedicate his life to the service of the neediest, especially of children and young people…  For this he undertook the path of the priesthood and, in a certain way, become the “Don Bosco of Southern Italy.”   From the beginning, he wanted to involve in his work some young women who shared his ideal and he offered them the words of St John the Baptist, “Prepare the way of the Lord” (Lk 3,4).   Trusting in divine Providence, Alfonso and the Sisters of John the Baptist set up a work that was superior to their own expectations.   From a simple house for the welcome of the young, there arose a whole Congregation which today is present in 16 countries and on 4 continents working alongside those who are “little” ones and “last”. “…St Pope John Paul – Beatification Homily 7 October 2001it was a genuine - st john paul on st alfonso - 6 feb 2018

PRAYER – Lord God, source of strength to all the saints, You called St Alfonso and the sisters, to live in total faith, accepting the sufferings and hardships to fulfil Your commandment of love.   Let their prayers, help us to keep our faith and total commitment, to the end of our days, so that we may see Your Face and live with all Your saints and angels.   Through our Saviour, Your Son, Jesus Christ, one God in unity with the Holy Spirit, amen.st alfonso maria fusco - pray for us - 6 feb 2018

Posted in SAINT of the DAY, VATICAN Resources

Saint of the Day – 6 February – St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910)

Saint of the Day – 6 February – St Alfonso Maria Fusco (1839-1910) Priest, Founder of the Sisters of Saint John the Baptist – also known as the Baptistine Sisters. Their mission is to evangelise and educate as well as to promote the faith amongst adolescents, with a particular emphasis on those who are poor or abandoned.   Patronages – the Baptistine Sisters .   He was Beatified by St Pope John Paul on 7 October 2001 and Canonised by Pope Francis on 16 October 2016.HEADER - Don-Alfonso-M-F-q

Alfonso Maria Fusco, the oldest of five children, was born on 23 March 1839, in Angri, in the province of Salerno, in the Diocese of Nocera-Sarno.   His parents, Aniello Fusco and Josephine Schiavone, were both of peasant stock but were raised from their infancy with strong Christian principles and with a holy fear of God.   They were married in the Collegiata of St John the Baptist on 31 January 1834 and for four long years the cradle they had lovingly prepared remained painfully empty.   In Pagani, only a short distance from Angri, the relics of St Alfonso Maria de’ Liguori were preserved.   It was to his tomb that Aniello and Josephine went in 1838 to pray.   While they were there, the Redemptorist, Francesco Saverio Pecorelli told them:  “You will have a son; you will name him Alfonso; he will become a priest and will live the life of Blessed Alfonso”.

The little boy quickly revealed a mild, gentle, lovable character, responsive to prayer and to the poor.   When he was seven, he received his First Holy Communion and Confirmation.   He told his parents when he was eleven that he wanted to become a priest and on 5 November 1850, “freely and with the sole desire to serve God and the Church”, as he himself declared many years later, he entered the episcopal Seminary of Nocera dei Pagani.   On 29 May 1863, he was ordained by the Archbishop of Salerno, Monsignor Anthony Salomone, amid the joy of his family and the enthusiasm of the people.

Quickly he distinguished himself among the clergy of the Collegiata of St John the Baptist in Angri for his zeal, his regular attendance at liturgical services and for his diligence in the administration of the sacraments, especially the Sacrament of Reconciliation where he revealed his paternal understanding of his penitents.   He devoted himself to the evangelisation of the people through his simple and incisive style of preaching.

The daily life of Father Alfonso was that of a zealous priest but he carried in his heart an old dream.   In his last years at the seminary, one night he had dreamed that Jesus the Nazarene was calling him to found an institute of Sisters and an orphanage for boys and girls as soon as he was ordained.

It was a meeting with Maddalena Caputo of Angri, a strong-willed woman aspiring to enter religious life, which impelled Father Alfonso to move more quickly in the foundation of the Institute.   On 25 September 1878, Miss Caputo and three other young women met at night in the dilapidated Scarcella house in the Ardinghi district of Angri. The young women wanted to dedicate themselves to their own sanctification through a life of poverty, of union with God and of charity in the care and instruction of poor orphans.   The Congregation of the Baptistine Sisters of the Nazarene was thus begun;  the seed had fallen into the good earth of the hearts of these four zealous and generous women.   Privations, struggles, opposition and trials were their lot but the Lord made that seed grow abundantly.   The Scarcella House was quickly named the Little House of Providence.

Other postulants and the first orphans began to arrive and with them the first problems. The Lord, who allows those whom He loves much to suffer much, did not spare the Founder and his daughters.   Father Alfonso accepted these trials, at times very difficult ones, demonstrating an absolute conformity to the will of God, an heroic obedience to his superiors and an unbounded trust in Divine Providence.

Father Alfonso did not leave many writings.   He loved to speak with the witness of his life.   The short statements, rich in evangelical wisdom, which we find in his writings, and the testimony of those who knew him are flashes which illuminate his simple life, his great love for the Eucharist and for the Passion of Jesus and his filial devotion to the Sorrowful Mother.   He would often repeat to his Sisters:  “Let us become saints, following Jesus closely… Daughters, if you live in poverty, in chastity and in obedience, you will shine like the stars up in the heavens”.

He directed the Institute wisely and prudently.   Like a loving father, he watched over the Sisters and the orphans.  He showed an almost maternal tenderness for all, especially for the most needy of the orphans.   For them there was always space in the Little House of Providence, even when there was a scarcity of food or absolutely nothing.   Then Father Alfonso would reassure his worried daughters saying:  “Don’t worry, my daughters. I am going to Jesus now and He will worry about us!”   And Jesus answered quickly and with great generosity.   To him who believes, everything is possible!

At a time when an education was the privilege of the few, denied to the poor and to women, Father Alfonso did not mind sacrificing to give the children a peaceful life, an education and a trade for the older ones so that once they were grown up, they could live as honest citizens and as committed Christians.   He wanted the Sisters to begin their studies as soon as possible so that they could teach the poor and, through their instruction and evangelisation, prepare the way for Jesus especially in the hearts of the children and of youth.

His tenacious will, totally anchored in Divine Providence, the wise and prudent collaboration of Maddalena Caputo, known as Sr Crocifissa, who was the first superior of the growing Institute, the ongoing spur of the love of God and neighbour, contributed to the extraordinary development of the work in a very short time.   The growing requests for assistance for an ever greater number of orphans and children urged Fr Alfonso to open new houses, first in Campania and then in other regions of Italy.

During the night of 5 February 1910, he felt unwell.   He requested and then received the sacraments on the morning of 6 February.   After having blessed with trembling hands his own daughters weeping around his bed, he exclaimed:  “Lord, I thank you, I have been a useless servant”.   Then, turning to the Sisters: “From heaven I will not forget you. I will pray for you always”.   And he then slept peacefully in the Lord.

News of his death spread quickly and for that entire Sunday, there was a procession of people crying and saying:  “The father of the poor is dead; the saint is dead!”

His witness has been an inspiration of life and a means of grace, especially for his Sisters spread today throughout four continents.   On 12 February 12, 1976, Pope Paul VI recognised his heroic virtues; on 7 October 2001, Pope John Paul II, proclaiming him blessed, offers him as an example to priests and a model for everyone of an educator and protector especially to the poor and the needy.  (vatican.va)st alfonso maria fusco

On 16 October 2016, Pope Francis Canonised St Alfonso, together with Salomon Leclercq, José Sánchez del Río, Manuel González García, Lodovico Pavoni, José Gabriel del Rosario Brochero, Elisabeth of the Holy Trinity Catezbl alfonso fusco