Posted in "Follow Me", MARTYRS, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 26 December – “Love was Stephen’s weapon …”

Quote/s of the Day – 26 December – Feast of St Stephen the ProtoMartyr and The Second Day in the Christmas Octave

“And so the love that brought Christ
from heaven to earth,
raised Stephen from earth to heaven;
shown first in the King,
it later shone forth in his soldier.”

“Love was Stephen’s weapon
by which he gained every battle
and so won the crown
signified by his name.”
(The meaning of the anme
STEPHEN is “crown/wreath”)

“His love of God
kept him from yielding
to the ferocious mob;
his love for his neighbour
made him pray for those
who were stoning him.”

“Love inspired him
to reprove those who erred,
to make them amend;
love led him to pray for those
who stoned him,
to save them from punishment.”

“Strengthened by the power of his love,
he overcame the raging cruelty of Saul
and won his persecutor on earth
as his companion in heaven.
In his holy and tireless love he longed,
to gain by prayer,
those, whom he could not convert,
by admonition.”

More here:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/12/26/quote-s-of-the-day-26-december-see-the-gold-that-i-expect-of-you-st-stephen/

St Fulgentius of Ruspe (460-533)

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on MERCY, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 10 September – ‘Christ made love the stairway…’

Quote/s of the Day – 10 September – Thursday of the Twenty Third week in Ordinary Time, Readings: 1 Corinthians 8:1b-7, 11-13, Psalms 139:1-3, 13-14, 23-24, Luke 6:27-38

“Love one another as I have loved you”

John 15:12

“This is my commandment,
that you love one another as I have loved you.
Greater love has no man than this,
that he lay down his life for his friends.”

John 15:12-13

“Once for all, then,
a short precept is given you –
Love and do what you will,
whether you hold your peace,
through love, hold your peace;
whether you cry out,
through love cry out;
whether you correct,
through love correct;
whether you spare,
through love do you spare.
Let the root of love be within,
of this root, can nothing spring
but what is good.”

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

Homily 7 on John

“My brothers,
Christ made love the stairway
that would enable all Christians
to climb to heaven.
Hold fast to it, therefore,
in all sincerity,
give one another practical proof of it
and by your progress in it,
make your ascent together.”

St Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533)

“So hold fast to the sweet and salutary bond of love,
without which,
the rich are poor
and with which the poor are rich.
What do the rich possess if not charity? (…)
And since “God is love,” (1 Jn 4:8) as John the evangelist says,
what can the poor lack,
if they merit to possess God by means of charity? (…)
So love, dearest brethren
and hold fast to charity.
without which no-one
will ever see God.”

St Caesarius of Arles (470-543)

“At the end of your life,
you will be judged by your love.”

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

Posted in MARTYRS, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 15 May – ‘ The stairway to Heaven…’

One Minute Reflection – 15 May – “Mary’s Month” – Friday of the Fifth Week of Easter, Readings: Acts 15:22-31, Psalm 57:8-12, John 15:12-17 and the Memorial of St Dymphna (7th Century) “The Lily of Éire”

“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.  Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”” ... John 15:12-13

this is my commandment that you love - 15 may 2020

REFLECTION – “Love, indeed, is the source of all good things, it is an impregnable defence and the way that leads to heaven.   He who walks in love can neither go astray, nor be afraid, love guides him, protects him and brings him to his journey’s end.

My brothers, Christ made love the stairway that would enable all Christians to climb to heaven.   Hold fast to it, therefore, in all sincerity, give one another practical proof of it and by your progress in it, make your ascent together.” … St Fulgentius of Ruspe (460-533) Bishop – An excerpt from his Sermon 3

john 15 12 love one another - my brothers christ made love the stairway - st fulgentius of ruspe 15 may 2020

PRAYER – Almighty God and Father, You gave us a new birth in holy baptism and a new life in Your Son, who first loved us and gave His life for us.   Grant us, we pray, the grace to love all as He did and bear much fruit, always striving after what He has taught who goes ahead of us, to lead us to You.   May the prayers of His beloved Mother and ours and St Dymphna, grant us help and inspiration as we travel the road to eternal life.   Through Christ our Lord, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God now and for all eternity, amen.

immaculate-mary-pray-for-us-26 aug 2017

ST DYMPHNA PRAY FOR US 15 MAY 2020

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, LENT 2020, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The WORD, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Lenten Reflection – 3 April – ‘He alone is Priest, Sacrifice and Temple…’

Lenten Reflection – 3 April – Friday of the Fifth Week of Lent, Readings: Jeremiah 20:10-13, Psalm 18:2-7, John 10:31-42

“Lord, open my lips, and my mouth shall declare your praise.”

“If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me
but if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works,
that you may know and understand
that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.” … John 10:37-38

Daily Meditation:
Set us free.

“The Apostle teaches that Christ offered Himself for us to God as a fragrant offering and sacrifice.   He is the true God and the true high priest who for our sake entered once for all into the holy of holies, taking with Him not the blood of bulls and goats but His own blood.   This was foreshadowed by the high priest of old when each year he took blood and entered the holy of holies.

Christ is, therefore, the one who in Himself alone, embodied all that He knew to be necessary to achieve our redemption.   He is at once Priest and Sacrifice, God and Temple. He is the Priest through whom we have been reconciled, the Sacrifice by which we have been reconciled, the Temple in which we have been reconciled, the God with whom we have been reconciled.   He alone is Priest, Sacrifice and Temple because He is all these things as God, in the form of a Servant but He is not alone as God, for He is this with the Father and the Holy Spirit in the form of God.

Hold fast to this and never doubt it – the only-begotten Son, God the Word, becoming man offered Himself for us, to God, as a fragrant offering and sacrifice.   In the time of the Old Testament, patriarchs, prophets and priests sacrificed animals in His honour and in honour of the Father and the Holy Spirit, as well.   Now in the time of the New Testament the Holy Catholic Church, throughout the world, never ceases to offer the Sacrifice of bread and wine, in faith and love, to Him and to the Father and the Holy Spirit, with whom He shares one Godhead.” … St Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533) – An excerpt from his Treatise on Faith addressed to PeterFRIDAY OF THE FIFTH WEEK 3 APRIL 2020

The Lord is my rock, and my fortress and my deliverer,
my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,
my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised
and I am saved from my enemies.
Psalm 18:2-3

Intercessions:
Thanks be to Christ the Lord,
who brought us life by is death on the cross.
With our whole heart let us askHhim:
By Your death raise us to life.

Teacher and Saviour,
You have shown us Your fidelity and made us a new creation by Your passion,
– keep us from falling again into sin.
Help us to deny ourselves today,
– and not deny those in need.
May we receive this day of penance as Your gift,
– and give it back to You through works of mercy.
Master our rebellious hearts,
– and teach us generosity.
Closing Prayer:
Most forgiving Lord,
again and again You welcome me back into Your loving arms.
Grant me freedom from the heavy burdens of sin
that weigh me down
and keep me so far from You.
May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.

“O Fountain of everlasting love,
what shall I say of You?
How can I forget You,
Who have vouchsafed to remember me
even after I was corrupted and lost?”

Thomas á Kempis (1380-1471)

Imitation of Christ, Book 3, Chapter 10

o-fountain-of-everlasting-love-thomas-a-kempis-3-april-2019 AND 2 APRIL 2020

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES for the NEW YEAR, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on LOVE, SAINT of the DAY, The WILL of GOD

Quote/s of the Day – 1 January – ‘Love God’

Quote/s of the Day – 1 January – The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God and the Octave Day of the Nativity of the Lord and the Memorial of St Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533)

“My brothers,
Christ made love the stairway
that would enable all Christians
to climb to heaven.
Hold fast to it, therefore,
in all sincerity,
give one another practical proof of it
and by your progress in it,
make your ascent together.”

St Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533)

From a sermon on The Feast of Saint Stephenchrist made love the stairway - st fulgentius 1 jan 2020.jpg

“Love God,
serve God,
everything is in that.”

St Clare of Assisi (1194-1253)love-god-serve-god-everything-is-in-that-st-clare-1-jan-2019 and 2020.jpg

“During this new year,
I resolve to begin a new life.
I do not know,
what will happen to me, during this year.
But I abandon myself entirely to You, my God.
And my aspirations and all my affections,
will be for You.
I feel so weak, dear Jesus
but with Your help,
I hope and resolve,
to live a different life,
that is, a life closer to You.”

St Gemma Galgani (1878-1903)during this new year i resolve - st gemma galgani a blessed new year - 1 jan 2020.jpg

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 1 January – Saint Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533) “The Pocket Augustine”

Saint of the Day – 1 January – Saint Fulgentius of Ruspe (c 462 – 533) Abbot, Bishop of the city of Ruspe, Roman province of Africa, North Africa in modern day Tunisia, Theologian, Writer- known as “The Pocket Augustine” – born Fabius Claudius Gordianus Fulgentius in c 462 at Carthage, North Africa (modern Tunis, Tunisia) and died on 1 January 533 in Ruspe of natural causes.   He is venerated today and on 3 January by the Augustinians.st fulgentius engraving.jpg

He was born to a Roman senatorial family, and was well educated.   His father Claudius, died while Fulgentius was still quite young.   His mother, Mariana taught him to speak Greek and Latin.   He became so good at Greek, that he spoke it like a native and committed all of Homer to memory.   He was also well trained in Latin literature.

As he grew older, he managed his house wisely in subjection to his mother and Fulgentius quickly gained wide respect for his conduct of the family affairs.   This reputation helped him to acquire a post as a civil servant in the government of Rome, as a procurator of Byzacena.

He quickly grew tired of the provincial life.   This, together with his studies of religion, particularly a sermon of Saint Augustine of Hippo on Psalm 36, led to his being attracted to a religious life and he entered a monastery, became a monk, then was Ordained and became Abbot.585px-Fulgentius_von_Ruspe_17Jh.jpg

At the time, the Arian persecutions had ceased but the election of Catholic bishops was forbidden.   In 508 it became necessary to defy the law when bishops were consecrated, Fulgentius being chosen for Ruspe (modern Kudiat Rosfa, Tunisia).   He was exiled with 60 other bishops to Sardinia.   There they built a monastery and continued to write, pray, and study.Landscape_with_St.jpg

Fulgentius was invited back to Carthage by the Arian king Thrasimund to hold a debate with his Arian replacement around 515 and so successfully refuted his Arian opponents that he was exiled again in 518.

King Hilderic succeeded Thrasimund in 523 and permitted the exiles to return.   Peace finally being restored to the African church, Fulgentius returned to his Diocese. He would have preferred to return to his monastery and resume his studies but he was such a popular preacher, he was kept busy in the pulpit until his death.st fulgentius

As a Bishop, he followed Augustine’s example in living in community with the clergy of his Diocese.   He founded several other monasteries in Africa.   When he was exiled to Sardinia, not wanting to be away from the monastic community life, he even founded monasteries there.

Various letters and eight sermons survive.   Fulgentius’s work shows his vast knowledge of Greek and a strong influence and agreement with Saint Augustine, so much so, that he is known as “The Pocket Augustine.”   He wrote frequently against Arianism and Pelagianism.E07a-photo-St-Fulgentius-of-Ruspe-1013x1024.jpg

Saint Fulgentius died of natural causes in 533 at Ruspe.   Some of his relics are located at Bourges, France.

St Fulgentius truly aimed to live a life in conformity with St Augustine’s precept:

“Everything outside of us fluctuates with the storms and temptations of this age.   But we need an interior desert, where we gather ourselves and live of our faith.” … (Sermo 47,25)Saint+Fulgentius.jpg

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE, SAINT of the DAY, St PAUL!

Thought for the Day – 26 December – The Armament of Love

Thought for the Day – 26 December – Feast of St Stephen the ProtoMartyr and The Second Day in the Christmas Octave

The Armament of Love

Saint Fulgentius of Ruspe (460-533)
Bishop

An excerpt from his Sermon 3

Yesterday, we celebrated the birth in time of our eternal King.   Today, we celebrate the triumphant suffering of His soldier.   Yesterday, our king, clothed in His robe of flesh, left His place in the virgin’s womb and graciously visited the world.   Today, His soldier, leaves the tabernacle of His body and goes triumphantly to heaven.yesterday we celebrated the birth in time today we - st fulgentius of ruspe - st stephen 26 dec 2019.jpg

Our king, despite His exalted majesty, came in humility for our sake, yet, He did not come empty-handed.   He brought His soldiers a great gift, that not only enriched them but also made them unconquerable in battle, for it was the gift of love, which was to bring men to share in His divinity.   He gave of His bounty, yet without any loss to Himself.   In a marvellous way He changed into wealth, the poverty of His faithful follower,s while remaining in full possession of His own inexhaustible riches.

And so, the love that brought Christ from heaven to earth, raised Stephen from earth to heaven – shown first in the king, it later shone forth in His soldier.   Love was Stephen’s weapon by which he gained every battle and so won the crown signified by his name. His love of God kept him from yielding to the ferocious mob, his love for his neighbour made him pray for those who were stoning him.   Love inspired him to reprove those who erred, to make them amend, love led him to pray for those who stoned him, to save them from punishment.   Strengthened by the power of his love, he overcame the raging cruelty of Saul and won his persecutor on earth as his companion in heaven.   In his holy and tireless love, he longed to gain by prayer, those whom he could not convert by admonition.

Now at last, Paul rejoices with Stephen, with Stephen he delights in the glory of Christ, with Stephen he exalts, with Stephen he reigns.   Stephen went first, slain by the stones thrown by Paul but Paul followed after, helped by the prayer of Stephen.   This, surely, is the true life, my brothers, a life in which Paul feels no shame because of Stephen’s death and Stephen delights in Paul’s companionship, for love fills them both with joy.   It was Stephen’s love that prevailed over the cruelty of the mob and it was Paul’s love, that covered the multitude of his sins, it was love that won for both of them the kingdom of heaven.

Love, indeed, is the source of all good things, it is an impregnable defence and the way that leads to heaven.   He who walks in love can neither go astray, nor be afraid, love guides him, protects him and brings him to his journey’s end.

My brothers, Christ made love the stairway that would enable all Christians to climb to heaven.   Hold fast to it, therefore, in all sincerity, give one another practical proof of it and by your progress in it, make your ascent together.

St Stephen, Pray for Us!st stephen pray for us 26 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in CARMELITES, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, CHRISTMASTIDE!, MARTYRS, Pope BENEDICT XVI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on LOVE, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 26 December – “See the gold that I expect of you” – St Stephen

Quote/s of the Day – 26 December – Feast of St Stephen the ProtoMartyr and The Second Day in the Christmas Octave

“Love, indeed, is the source
of all good things,
it is an impregnable defence
and the way that leads to heaven.   
He who walks in love
can neither go astray,
nor be afraid,
love guides him,
protects him
and brings him
to his journey’s end.”

St Fulgentius of Ruspe (460-533)love indeed is the source of all good things - st stephen - by st fulgentius 26 dec 2019.jpg

“He [St Stephen],
followed the Lord in what may be,
by nature, the most difficult and even,
apparently, impossible for the human heart.
He fulfilled the command to love one’s enemies,
as did the Saviour Himself.
The Child in the manger,
who has come to fulfill His Father’s will,
even to death on the Cross,
sees before Him in spirit,
all who will follow Him on this way.
His heart goes out to the youth
whom He will one day await with a palm
as the first to reach the Father’s throne.
His little hand points him out to us,
as an example, as if to say,
“See the gold that I expect of you.”

St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross

[Edith Stein] (1891-1942)see the gold that i expect of you - st teresa benedicta of the cross 26 dec 2019 st stephen.jpg

“For believers, the day of death
and even more so,
the day of martyrdom,
is not the end of everything
but rather, the “passage”
to immortal life,
it is the day of the final birth,
the “dies natalis.”
Thus is understood,
the link that exists between
the “dies natalis” of Christ
and the “dies natalis”
of St Stephen.
If Jesus had not been
born on earth,
men would not have been able
to be born for heaven.
Precisely because
Christ was born,
we are able
to be “reborn.”

Pope Benedict XVI

26 December 2006for believers the day of death - st stephen - pope benedict 26 dec 2019.jpg

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 11 August – ‘Stewards of the Mysteries of God.’

One Minute Reflection – 11 August – Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 12:32–48 and the Memorial of St Clare of Assisi (1194-1253)

And the Lord said, “Who then is the faithful and wise steward, whom his master will set over his household….” … Luke 12:42

REFLECTION – “Wishing to emphasise the special office of the servants whom He has placed in charge of His people, the Lord says, ‘Who, do you think, is the faithful and wise steward whom the Lord sets over his household, to give to them their measure of wheat at the proper time?   Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes.” Who is that master, brethren?   Without a doubt it is Christ, who says to His disciples:  “You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right for so I am” (Jn 13,13).   What, too, is the master’s household?   Doubtless it is the one which the Lord Himself ransomed…  This sacred household is the holy, Catholic Church, which is spread through the whole earth with abundant fertility and glories in the fact that she has been redeemed by the precious blood of her Master.   As He Himself says: “The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mk 10,45). He is, too, the good shepherd who laid down his life for his sheep” (Jn 10,11)…

As to who the steward is, who ought to be faithful as well as wise, the Apostle Paul shows us, when, speaking of himself and his companions, he says:  “This is how one should regard us, as the servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God.   Moreover, it is required of stewards that they should be found trustworthy” (1Cor 4,1-2).   Now, lest anyone of us should think that it is only the apostles who have been made stewards… the blessed Apostle Paul shows us that the bishops also are stewards, when he says: “For a bishop, as God’s steward, must be blameless” (Tt 1,7)…

We, therefore, who are the servants of the master of the household, we are the stewards of the Lord, we have received the measure of wheat to disburse to you.” … Saint Fulgentius of Ruspe (467-532) Bishop – Homily 1, on the Lord’s servants ; CCL 91A, 889 (trans. breviary Common of pastors)luke 12 42 who then is the faithful and wise steward - this household is the one holy catholic st fulgentius of ruspe 11 aug 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Holy God, grant we pray, Your Holy Spirit of love and divine grace to grow ever more in faith.   By our prayers and love for You and our neighbour, may we merit Your divine assistance.   Lord Jesus, help us to dwell often on the manner in which we are following You.   Let us strive each day to become more and more like You in all things and, to become beacons of Your Light, to all the world.  St Clare of Assisi, you who were a light to all, pray for us, amen.st-clare-of-assisi-pray-for-us-11-aug-2017,2018 and 2019.jpg

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY

One Minute Reflection – 26 December – The Memorial of St Stephen the First Martyr and the Second Day in the Octave of Christmas

One Minute Reflection – 26 December – The Memorial of St Stephen the First Martyr and the Second Day in the Octave of Christmas

“When they hand you over, do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say;   for what you to say will be given to you in that hour;   for it not you who speak, but the Spirit of your father speaking through you.” …Matthew 10:19-20

REFLECTION – “Yesterday, we celebrated, the birth in time of our eternal King.   Today, we celebrate the triumphant suffering, of his soldier.   Yesterday our king, clothed in His robe of flesh, left  His place in the virgin’s womb and graciously visited the world.   Today His soldier, leaves the tabernacle of his body and goes triumphantly to heaven.”…from a sermon by Saint Fulgentius of Ruspe (460-533)yesterday we celebrated - st fulgentius - 26 dec 2017

PRAYER – O God, the teacher and ruler of all that minister unto Thee, who did adorn the first beginnings of thy Church both with the ministrations of Thy blessed Deacon Stephen and with the precious blood of his martyrdom:   grant, we beseech Thee, that we, in the hour of our departure, obtaining Thy pardon, may be followers of his example and assisted by his prayers. Amen. – Milanese Sacramentaryst stephen pray for us

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

Quote/s of the Day – 11 May

Quote/s of the Day – 11 May

“By asking the beloved disciple
to treat Mary as his mother,
Jesus founded Marian devotion.”

St John Paul (1920-2005)

BY ASKING THE BELOVED DISCIPLE - ST JOHN PAUL

“The Mother of God,
is the Ladder of Heaven.
God came down by this Ladder
that men might,
by Mary,
climb up to Him in Heaven.”

St Fulgentius (460-533)

THE MOTHER OF GOD-ST FULGENTIUS

“Consider this great mystery!
The Son of God has passed whole and entire,
from the heart of the Father
to the womb of Mary
and from the womb of the Mother
to the lap of the Church.”

St Peter Damian (1007-72) Doctor of the Church

CONSIDER THIS GREAT MYSTERY-ST PETER DAMIAN

“Let us not imagine that we obscure
the glory of the Son by the great praise
we lavish on the Mother;
for the more she is honoured,
the greater is the glory of her Son.
There can be no doubt that whatever we say
in praise of the Mother gives equal praise to the Son.”

Saint Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153) – Doctor of the Church

LET US NOT IMAGINE-ST BERNARD

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 26 December

One Minute Reflection – 26 December

God is love and he who lives in love lives in God and God in him…..1 Jn 4:16

REFLECTION – Love is the source of all good things.  It is an impregnable defense and the way that leads to heaven.  Those who walk in love can neither go astray nor be afraid.  Love guides and protects them and brings them safely to their journey’s end……….St Fulgentius

PRAYER – Loving Father, pour forth Your love into my heart and help me always to act in accord with it.  Let me be ruled by Your love in all things so that I may experience it completely with You in Heaven.  St Stephen you are an example of total love, pray for us all! Amen.

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st-fulgentius1226stephen17