Posted in DECEMBER - The IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN TITLES, The IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, The INCARNATION

Quote/s of the Day – 8 December on the Immaculate Conception

Quote/s of the Day – 8 December on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

“This Virgin Mother
of the Only begotten of God,
is called Mary,
worthy of God,
Immaculate of the Immaculate,
One of the One.

Origen (c 185-253)
Priest, Theologian, Exegist, Writer, Apologist, Father

“Thou alone and Thy Mother,
are in all things fair,
there is no flaw in Thee
and no stain in Thy Mother.

St Ephrem of Syria (306-373)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“Come, then and search out Your sheep,
not through Your servants or hired men
but do it Yourself.
Lift me up bodily and in the flesh,
which is fallen in Adam.
Lift me up not from Sarah but from Mary,
a Virgin not only undefiled
but a Virgin whom grace had made inviolate,
free of every stain of sin.

St Ambrose (340-397)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“The very fact
that God has elected her,
proves, that none was ever
holier than Mary;
if any stain had disfigured her soul,
if any other virgin
had been purer and holier,
God would have selected her
and rejected Mary.

St Jacob of Sarug (c 451-521)
Bishop, Theologian, Poet, Writer

“Today humanity, in all the radiance
of her Immaculate nobility,
receives its ancient beauty.
The shame of sin
had darkened the splendour
and attraction of human nature
but when the Mother
of the Fair One par excellence,
is born, this nature again,
regains in her person,
its ancient privileges
and is fashioned according to a perfect model,
truly worthy of God….

The reform of our nature begins today
and the aged world,
subjected to a wholly divine transformation,
receives the first fruits of the second creation.”

St Andrew of Crete (c 650-c 740)
Bishop, Theologian, Hymnist

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, HOLY WEEK, LENT, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 14 September – ‘ Had there been no Cross ….’

One Minute Reflection – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, Readings: Numbers 21:4-9Psalms 78:1-234-3536-3738Philippians 2:6-11John 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 – “We are celebrating the Feast of the Cross which drove away darkness and brought in the light… Had there been no Cross, Christ could not have been Crucified. Had there been no Cross, Life Itself could not have been nailed to the tree. And if Life had not been nailed to it, they would be no streams of immortality pouring from Christ’s side, blood and water for the world’s cleansing. The legal bond of our sin would not be cancelled, we should not have obtained our freedom, we should not have enjoyed the fruit of the tree of life and the gates of paradise would not stand open. Had there been no Cross, death would not have been trodden underfoot, nor hell despoiled… The Cross is called Christ’s glory, it is saluted as His triumph.”….St Andrew of Crete (650-740)

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 Christ and we praise you, for by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world. Amen

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MARIAN POETRY, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The NATIVITY of the BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Quote/s of the Day – The Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Quote/s of the Day – The Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary

“This Virgin Mother
of the Only begotten of God
is called Mary,
worthy of God,
immaculate of the immaculate,
one of the One.”

Origen (c 185-253)

“She is the flower of the field
from whom bloomed
the precious lily of the valley.”

St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor

“Today the Virgin is born,
tended and formed
and prepared for her role as Mother of God,
who is the universal King of the ages.
… Therefore, let all creation sing and dance
and unite to make worthy contribution
to the celebration of this day.
… Let everything, mundane things
and those above, join in festive celebration.
Today this created world is raised
to the dignity of a holy place
for Him who made all things.
The creature is newly prepared
to be a divine dwelling place for the Creator.”

St Andrew of Crete (650-740)
Bishop

Happy birthday, dearest Mother!
Sing our youthful hearts today,
And the birds and flowers seem joining
In our merry roundelay.
How the angels must be singing
Round thy white, resplendent throne,
While the saints in their holy rapture
Claim thee as their very own.
But, dear Mother, deign to listen
As thy children here on earth
Offer unto thee their greetings,
Though they be of little worth,
Save that love is pulsing through them
From thy little ones sincere,
Who are hoping they may meet thee
On some birthday, Mother dear.

Brother Cyril Robert

Mary Immaculate: God’s Mother and Mine.
Marist Press, 1946

Posted in CATHOLIC DEVOTIONS of the Month, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN TITLES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The IMMACULATE CONCEPTION

Quote/s of the Day – 9 December – The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception – From the Fathers

Quote/s of the Day – 9 December – The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

From the Fathers

“He was the Ark formed of incorruptible wood.
For by this, is signified, that His Tabernacle
was exempt from putridity and corruption.”

Saint Hippolytus (c 170-c 235)

Hippolytus was one of the most important
second-third century Christian theologians.he was th ark formed of incorruptible wood - st hippolytus - imm conception 9 dec 2019.jpg

“This Virgin Mother of the Only begotten of God is called Mary,
worthy of God, immaculate of the immaculate, one of the one.”

Origen (c 185-253)this-virgin-mother-origen-8dec2018 and 9 dec 2019.jpg

Priest and Theologian
Origen of Alexandria, also known as Origen Adamantius, was an early Christian scholar, ascetic and theologian who was born and spent the first half of his career in Alexandria.

“Thou alone and Thy Mother are in all things fair,
there is no flaw in Thee
and no stain in Thy Mother.”

Saint Ephrem of Syria (306-373)

Both Father and Doctor
Deacon, Theologian, Hymnistthou-alone-and-thou-mother-st-ephrem-8dec2018 and 9 dec 2019.jpg

“Mary, a virgin not only undefiled
but a virgin, whom grace has made inviolate,
free of every stain of sin.”

Sermon 22, in the year 338

Saint Ambrose (340-397)

Both Father and Doctor – One of the original four Fathers of the Latin Church, Bishop of Milanmary-a-virgin-st-ambrose-8dec2018 and 9 dec 2019.jpg

“A Virgin, innocent, spotless, free of all defect,
untouched, unsullied, holy in soul and body,
like a lily, sprouting among thorns.”

Saint Theodotus of Ancrya (Died c 446)

Bishop, Theologiana virgin innocent and spotless - 9 dec 2019 imm conception st theodotus .jpg

“The very fact that God has elected her,
proves that none was ever holier than Mary,
if any stain had disfigured her soul,
if any other virgin had been purer and holier,
God would have selected her and rejected Mary.”

Saint Jacob of Sarug (c 451-521)

Jacob of Sarug, also called Mar Jacob, was one of the foremost Syriac poet-theologians, perhaps only second in stature to Ephrem the Syrian and equal to Narsai. Where his predecessor Ephrem is known as the ‘Harp of the Spirit’, Jacob is the ‘Flute of the Spirit’.the very fact that god has elected her st jacob of sarug imm conception 9 dec 2019.jpg

“Today, humanity,
in all the radiance of her immaculate nobility,
receives its ancient beauty.
The shame of sin had darkened
the splendour and attraction of human nature
but when the Mother of the Fair One par excellence is born,
this nature again regains in her person.
its ancient privileges and is fashioned
according to a perfect model,
truly worthy of God….
The reform of our nature
begins today and the aged world,
subjected to a wholly divine transformation,
receives the first fruits of the second creation.”

Saint Andrew of Crete (650-740)

Bishop, Theologian

Saint Andrew of Crete, also known as Andrew of Jerusalem, was an 8th-century Bishop, theologian, homilist and hymnist.today humanity - st andrew of crete imm conception 9 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 14 September – O cross, You are the Glorious Sign of Victory.

One Minute Reflection – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, Gospel: 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 3:14-15and-as-moses-lifted-up-john-3-14-15-14-sept-2018

REFLECTION – “We are celebrating the feast of the cross which drove away darkness and brought in the light…  Had there been no cross, Christ could not have been crucified. Had there been no cross, Life Itself could not have been nailed to the tree.   And if Life had not been nailed to it, they would be no streams of immortality pouring from Christ’s side, blood and water for the world’s cleansing.   The legal bond of our sin would not be cancelled, we should not have obtained our freedom, we should not have enjoyed the fruit of the tree of life and the gates of paradise would not stand open.   Had there been no cross, death would not have been trodden underfoot, nor hell despoiled…  The cross is called Christ’s glory, it is saluted as His triumph.”….St Andrew of Crete (650-740)we are celebrating the feast of the cross st andrew of crete 14 sept 2019

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 Christ and we praise you, for by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world. Amenwe-adore-you-o-christ-14-sept-2018.jpg

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, HOLY WEEK, LENT, MORNING Prayers

Palm or Passion Sunday – 25 March 2018

Palm or Passion Sunday – 25 March 2018

Today we commemorate Christ’s entry into Jerusalem for the completion of the Paschal Mystery.   In the old calendar before Vatican II, the Church celebrated Passion Sunday two Sundays before Easter and then Palm Sunday was the beginning of Holy Week.   The Church has combined the two to reinforce the solemnity of Holy Week.Entry into Jerusalem Van Dyck

The Palm Sunday procession is formed of Christians who, in the “fullness of faith,” make their own the gesture of the Jews and endow it with its full significance.   Following the Jews’ example we proclaim Christ as a Victor… Hosanna to the Son of David!   Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord.   But by our faith we know, as they did not, all that His triumph stands for.   He is the Messiah, the Son of David and the Son of God.   He is the sign of contradiction, acclaimed by some and reviled by others.   Sent into this world to wrest us from sin and the power of Satan, He underwent His Passion, the punishment for our sins but issues forth triumphant from the tomb, the victor over death, making our peace with God and taking us with Him into the kingdom of His Father in heaven.palm sunday.infopalm sunday

Homily of St Andrew of Crete (650-740)

Palm Sunday marks the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem.   But he entered in humility, not in pomp and power.   To humble ourselves and make our souls the garments that we spread before him, this is the greeting he desires says St Andrew of Crete (650-740), one of the Early Church Fathers – his Memorial is 4 July.

Let us go together to meet Christ on the Mount of Olives.   Today he returns from Bethany and proceeds of his own free will toward his holy and blessed passion, to consummate the mystery of our salvation.   He who came down from heaven to raise us from the depths of sin, to raise us with himself, we are told in Scripture, above every sovereignty, authority and power and every other name that can be named, now comes of his own free will to make his journey to Jerusalem.   He comes without pomp or ostentation.   As the psalmist says:   He will not dispute or raise his voice to make it heard in the streets. He will be meek and humble, and he will make his entry in simplicity.

Let us run to accompany him as he hastens toward his passion and imitate those who met him then, not by covering his path with garments, olive branches or palms, but by doing all we can to prostrate ourselves before him by being humble and by trying to live as he would wish.   Then we shall be able to receive the Word at His coming and God, whom no limits can contain, will be within us.

In His humility Christ entered the dark regions of our fallen world and He is glad that He became so humble for our sake, glad that He came and lived among us and shared in our nature in order to raise us up again to Himself.   And even though we are told that He has now ascended above the highest heavens – the proof, surely, of His power and godhead – His love for man will never rest until He has raised our earthbound nature from glory to glory and made it one with his own in heaven.

So let us spread before His feet, not garments or soulless olive branches, which delight the eye for a few hours and then wither but ourselves, clothed in His grace, or rather, clothed completely in Him.   We who have been baptised into Christ must ourselves be the garments that we spread before Him.   Now that the crimson stains of our sins have been washed away in the saving waters of baptism and we have become white as pure wool, let us present the conqueror of death, not with mere branches of palms but with the real rewards of His victory.   Let our souls take the place of the welcoming branches as we join today in the children’s holy song: Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Blessed is the king of Israel.

This Lenten or Holy Week reading on the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem in humility is an excerpt from a Palm Sunday sermon (Oratio 9 in ramos palmarum: PG 97, 990-994) by Andrew of Crete, a bishop and Early Church Father who died in 740 AD.   It is used in the Roman Catholic Office of Readings for Palm Sunday with the accompanying biblical reading of Hebrews 10:1-18.

Christ's Entry into Jerusalem by Hippolyte Flandrin c. 1842PALM title image final gpalm sunday by james tissot no 1james tissot - palm sunday

St Andrew of Crete
St Andrew of Crete (c. 660-740) was born around 660 AD in Damascus and eventually entered monastic life at Mar Saba.   He later served at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem and was ordained a deacon at the great cathedral of Constantinople and mother Church of Eastern Christendom, Hagia Sophia, around 685.   Always exhibiting great pastoral solicitude for orphans, widows, and the aged, Saint Andrew spent his last days as Archbishop of Gortyna on Crete, a position to which he was elevated in 692. Attrbuted by many with the invention of the canon as a style of religious writing, his works display not only great rhetorical skill but an incomparable depth of theological understanding.   He is considered one of the great spiritual writers on the theme of repentance and his Great Canon, prayed during Lent in the Eastern Churches of Byzantine tradition, stands as a great testimony to man’s repentant cry to God, our merciful Father.  Saint Andrew of Crete is numbered among those great Christian writers known as the Early Church Fathers or “Fathers of the Church.”st andrew of crete

Posted in FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross/Triumph of the Cross

One Minute Reflection – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross

We proclaim Christ – yes, Christ nailed to the cross; and though it is a stumbling-block to Jews and folly to Greeks, yet to those who have heard his call, Jews and Greeks alike, he is the power of God and the wisdom of God...1 Corinthians 1:23-241 corinthians 1-23 24

REFLECTION – “We are celebrating the feast of the cross which drove away darkness and brought in the light… Had there been no cross, Christ could not have been crucified. Had there been no cross, Life Itself could not have been nailed to the tree.   And if Life had not been nailed to it, they would be no streams of immortality pouring from Christ’s side, blood and water for the world’s cleansing.   The legal bond of our sin would not be cancelled, we should not have obtained our freedom, we should not have enjoyed the fruit of the tree of life and the gates of paradise would not stand open.   Had there been no cross, death would not have been trodden underfoot, nor hell despoiled… The cross is called Christ’s glory; it is saluted as his triumph.”….St Andrew of Crete (650-740)we are celebrating the feast of the cross - st andrew of crete

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 Christ and we praise you, for by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world. Ameno cross - you are the glorious sign of victory - feast of the exaltation of the holy cross