Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DEATH, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SIN, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 29 March – ‘So let the Lord’s call resound in your ears!’

One Minute Reflection – 29 March – The Fifth Sunday of Lent, Readings: Ezekiel 37:12-14, Psalm 130:1-8, Romans 8:8-11, John 11:1-45

“Lazarus, come out!” … John 11:43

REFLECTION – “Lazarus, come out!”   Laid to rest in the tomb, you heard the resounding call.   Is there any voice greater than that of the Word?   Then you came out, you who were dead not merely for four days but for a very long time indeed.   You were raised with Christ …, your burial bands fell to the ground.   Do not fall back again now into death, do not rejoin those who dwell in the tombs, do not allow yourself to be stifled by the burial bands of your sins.   For would you be able to come back to life once again? Would you be able to bring out from the death of here below, the resurrection of all men at the end of time? …
So let the Lord’s call resound in your ears!   Do not close them today to the teaching and admonitions of the Lord.   If you used to be blind, without light in your tomb, open your eyes lest you sink into the sleep of death.   In the light of the Lord, behold light, in the Spirit of God, fix your eyes on the Son.   If you take to yourself the Word, in it’s entirety, then you focus onto your soul all the power of Christ, who heals and restores to life …. Don’t be afraid to put some work into preserving your baptismal purity and set the ways that lead to the Lord within your heart.   Take care to preserve the act of acquittal, which you received through pure grace ….
Let us be light, as the disciples learned from He who is the great Light – “You are the light of the world” (Mt 5,14).   Let us be lamps in this world by holding up on high the Word of life, by being a life force for others.   Let us set out in search of God, in search of the One who is the first and purest of lights.” … Saint Gregory Nazianzen (330-390) Bishop, Father and Doctor of the Church – Sermon on Holy Baptism.john 11 43 -so let the lords call resound in your ears! st gregory of nazianzen 29 march 2020

PRAYER – Give us good God, a heart of flesh, that we might resemble the heart of Your love.   For truly following the steps of Your divine Son, we would make peace in the world and give glory to Your kingdom.   Help us Lord, to see with Your eyes and hear with Your ears, that the Word may dwell in us all and bring us to rise with You.   May the immaculate heart of Mary, our Mother dwell in us and help us to reach our eternal home.   We make our prayer through Christ, our Lord, with You and the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.mary-mother-of-god-pray-for-us-27-july-2018 and 29 march 2020

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The BAPTISM of the LORD

Quote/s of the Day – 12 January – Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

Quote/s of the Day – 12 January – Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

“He wants you to become
a living force for all mankind,
lights shining in the world.

You are to be radiant lights
as you stand beside Christ,
the great light,
bathed in the glory of Him
who is the light of heaven.”

St Gregory Nazianzen (330-390)
Father & Doctor of the Churchhe-wants-you-to-become-a-living-force-st-gregory-of-nazianzen-13-jan-2019 and 12 jan 2020.jpg

(An excerpt from Oration 39 – On Holy Light)

“O Lord, wishing to fulfil all things
that You ordained before the ages,
You received the servants of Your mystery,
from among the Angels, Gabriel,
from among Men, the Virgin,
from among the Heavens, the Star
and from among the Waters, the Jordan,
in which You washed away the sin of the world,
O our Saviour, glory to You.”

St John Damascene (675-749)
Father & Doctor of the Churcho lord wishing to fulfil all things - st john damascene - 7 jan 2018.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, The BAPTISM of the LORD

Feast of the Baptism of the Lord – 12 January – St Gregory Nazianzen

This feast marks the ending of the Christmas season.   Traditionally, the event of Christ’s Baptism was linked with the visit of the Magi and the wedding feast of Cana as two additional “manifestations” of God with us.

Matthew’s simple account of the Baptism ends with the heavenly voice introducing “my beloved Son.”   Here, at the end of our focus on the mystery of Christmas, we are invited to welcome the Beloved One into our midst once more and to prepare ourselves through the Sundays which follow to hear His proclamation of Good News.

Many have expressed the wish that the spirit of Christmas last all through the year. Christians take that responsibility seriously – We want to make the meaning of Christmas—the fact that God has come to dwell with us in Jesus Christ — the central fact of life. And, we want all we say and do to help express, to make manifest, that basic truth.   Merry Christmas, one more time!goodbye-christmastide-13-jan-2019 AND 12 JAN 2020-for-this-he-bore-our-body-st-basil-the-great.jpg

The Baptism of Christ
A sermon by St Gregory Nazianzen (330-390)
Father and Doctor of the Church

Christ is bathed in light, let us also be bathed in light.
Christ is baptised, let us also go down with Him and rise with Him.LORD BAPTISM.JPG

John is baptising when Jesus draws near.   Perhaps He comes to sanctify His baptiser, certainly He comes to bury sinful humanity in the waters.   He comes to sanctify the Jordan for our sake and in readiness for us, He who is spirit and flesh comes to begin a new creation through the Spirit and water.

The Baptist protests – Jesus insists.   Then John says:  I ought to be baptised by You.   He is the lamp in the presence of the sun, the voice in the presence of the Word, the friend in the presence of the Bridegroom, the greatest of all born of woman in the presence of the firstborn of all creation, the one who leapt in his mother’s womb in the presence of Him who was adored in the womb, the forerunner and future forerunner in the presence of Him who has already come and is to come again.   I ought to be baptised by you – we should also add, “and for you,” for John is to be baptised in blood, washed clean like Peter, not only by the washing of his feet.11580-baptism-of-christ-el-greco.jpg

Jesus rises from the waters – the world rises with Him.   The heavens, like Paradise with its flaming sword, closed by Adam for himself and his descendants, are rent open.   The Spirit comes to Him as to an equal, bearing witness to His Godhead.   A voice bears witness to Him from heaven, His place of origin.   The Spirit descends in bodily form like the dove that so long ago announced the ending of the flood and so gives honour to the body that is One with God.baptism of the lord - daniel bonnell not a mormon.jpg

Today, let us do honour to Christ’s Baptism and celebrate this feast in holiness.   Be cleansed entirely and continue to be cleansed.   Nothing, gives such pleasure to God, as the conversion and salvation of men, for whom His every word and every revelation exist.   He wants you to become a living force for all mankind, lights shining in the world. You are to be radiant lights as you stand beside Christ, the great light, bathed in the glory of Him who is the light of heaven.   You are to enjoy, more and more, the pure and dazzling light of the Trinity, as now you have received – though not in its fullness – a ray of its splendour, proceeding from the one God, in Christ Jesus our Lord, to whom be glory and power for ever and ever.   Amen.721px-Guido_Reni_-_The_Baptism_of_Christ_-_Google_Art_Project.jpg

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARIAN QUOTES, MOTHER of GOD, Papa FRANCIS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ABORTION, QUOTES on FRIENDSHIP, SAINT of the DAY, St JOHN the BAPTIST, The CHRIST CHILD, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 2 January – Basil and Gregory and Pope Francis

Quote/s of the Day – 2 January – Christmas Weekday and The Memorial of St Basil the Great (329-379) and St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390), Readings: 1 John 2:22-28, Psalm 98:1-4, John 1:19-28

“It is a voice which cries out where it seems that no one can hear it — for who can listen in the desert? — and which cries out in the disorientation caused by a crisis of faith.
We cannot deny that the world today is in a crisis of faith.
One says: “I believe in God, I am a Christian” —
“I belong to this religion…”
But your life is far from being Christian – it is far removed from God! Religion, faith is but an expression: “Do I believe?” — “Yes!”
This means returning to God, converting the heart to God and going on this path to find Him.
He is waiting for us.
This is John the Baptist’s preaching – prepare. john-1-23-i-am-the-voice-crying-in-the-wilderness-it-is-a-voice-pope-francis-2-jan-2019 and 2020

Prepare for the encounter with this Child
who will give our smile back to us.”

Pope Francis

General Audience, 7 December 2016prepare-for-the-encounter-with-this-child-pope-francis-2-jan-2019 and used quotes 2020.jpg

“The hairsplitting difference between
formed and unformed makes no difference to us.
Whoever deliberately commits abortion
is subject to the penalty for homicide.”

St Basil the Great (329-379)

Father & Doctor of the Churchthe-hairsplitting-difference-st-basil-the-great-2-jan-2019 and 2020.jpg

“Different men have different names,
which they owe to their parents or to themselves,
that is, to their own pursuits and achievements.
But our great pursuit,
the great name we wanted,
was to be Christians,
to be called Christians.”

St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390)

(from his writings on his friendship with St Basil)different-men-st-gregory-of-nazianzen-2-jan-2018 and 2020.jpg

“If anyone does not believe
that Holy Mary
is the Mother of God,
such a one is a stranger
to the Godhead.”

St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390)
Father & Doctor of the Churchif-anyone-does-not-believe-st-gregory-of-nazianzen-2-jan-2019 and 2020.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, SAINT of the DAY, St JOHN the BAPTIST, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 2 January – “Now I begin.”

One Minute Reflection – 2 January – Christmas Weekday and The Memorial of St Basil the Great (329-379) and St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390), Readings: 1 John 2:22-28, Psalm 98:1-4, John 1:19-28

He said, “I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.” … 1 John 2:231 john 2 23 i am the voice of one crying in the wilderness 2 jan 2020.jpg

REFLECTION“Prepare a way for the Lord.”   Brethren, however far you journey along it… from the very nature of goodness, there is no limit to the way along which you travel. And so… the wise and indefatigable traveller… can say to himself each day:  “Now I begin”… And how many “go astray in the wilderness”… None of them can yet say:  “Now I begin.”

For “the beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord.”   If the beginning of wisdom, then surely it is also the beginning of the way of goodness…  It is this that encourages praise…; it also moves the proud to penance, so that they hear the voice of him crying in the wilderness,ordering the preparation of the way and thus showing how to begin it:  “Do penance for the kingdom of heaven is close at hand”…

If you are on the way then fear only one thing, lest you leave it, lest you offend the Lord who leads you along it so that He would abandon you to “wander in the way of your own heart”…   If you feel that the way is too narrow look forward to the end to which it leads you.   If you were to see how everything is to be attained, then you would say without hesitation:  “Broad indeed is your command!”   If you cannot see so far, believe Isaiah who could…   “Behold,” he says, “the redeemed shall walk by this way and the ransomed of the Lord shall return and come to Sion with singing, everlasting joy shall be upon their heads  . They shall obtain also joy and gladness and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.”   Those who dwell sufficiently on this end I think will not only make the way easier for himself but also grow wings, so that he no longer walks but flies…   May He, who is the track of the runners and the reward of the winners, lead and guide you along it – He, Christ Jesus.” … Blessed Guerric of Igny (c 1080-1157) Cistercian Abbot – 5th sermon of Advent, SC 166may he who is the track of the runners and the reward of the winnders guide you along it bl guerric of igny 2 jan 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Look with favour on our morning prayer, Lord and in Your saving love, let Your light penetrate the wilderness in our hearts.   May no sordid desires darken our minds, renewed and enlightened as we are, by Your heavenly grace.   God our Father, You enriched Your Church and gave examples for us to follow in the life and teachings of Sts Basil and Gregory. Grant that, learning Your truth with humility, we may practise it in faith and love.   Sts Basil and Gregory, pray for our beloved Church, pray for all Catholic Christians, through Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.sts-basil-and-gregory-pray-for-us-2-jan-2018 AND 2019.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints -2 January

St Basil the Great (329-379) Father & Doctor of the Church (Memorial)
St Gregory of Nazianzen (330-390) Father & Doctor of the Church (Memorial)
About these 2 great fathers:

https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/01/02/saint-s-of-the-day-st-basil-the-great-329-379-and-st-gregory-of-nazianzen-330-390-fathers-and-doctors-of-the-church/
AND:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/01/02/saint-s-of-the-day-2-january-st-basil-the-great-329-379-and-st-gregory-of-nazianzen-330-390-two-bodies-one-spirit/

St Adelard of Corbie
Bl Airaldus of Maurienne
St Asclepius of Limoges
St Aspasius of Auch
St Blidulf of Bobbio
Bl Guillaume Répin
St Hortulana of Assisi
St Isidore of Antioch
St Isidore of Nitria
St Laurent Bâtard
St Macarius the Younger
Blessed Marie Anne Blondin SSA (1809-1890)
St Maximus of Vienne
Bl Odino of Rot
St Paracodius of Vienne
St Seraphim of Sarov
St Seiriol
Bl Stephana de Quinzanis
St Telesphorus, Pope
St Theodota
St Theopistus
St Vincentian of Tulle

Many Martyrs Who Suffered in Rome:   There were many martyrs who suffered in the persecutions of Diocletian for refusing to surrender the holy books.   Though we know these atrocities occured, we do not know the names of the saints and we honour them as a group. c 303 in Rome, Italy.

Martyrs of Antioch – 5 saints:   A group of Christian soldiers martyred together for their faith. We know the names of five – Albanus, Macarius, Possessor, Starus and Stratonicus. They were born in Greece and were martyred in Antioch (modern Antakya, Turkey).

Many Martyrs of Britain:   The Christians of Britain appear to have escaped unharmed in the earlier persecutions which afflicted the Church but the cruel edicts of Diocletian were enforced in every corner of the empire and the faithful inhabitants of this land, whether native Britons or Roman colonists, were called upon to furnish their full number of holy Martyrs and Confessors.   The names of few are on record but the British historian, Saint Gildas, after relating the martyrdom of Saint Alban, tells us that many others were seized, some put to the most unheard-of tortures and others immediately executed, while not a few hid themselves in forests and deserts and the caves of the earth, where they endured a prolonged death until God called them to their reward.   The same writer attributes it to the subsequent invasion of the English, then a pagan people, that the recollection of the places, sanctified by these martyrdoms, has been lost and so little honour paid to their memory.   It may be added that, according to one tradition, a thousand of these Christians were overtaken in their flight near Lichfield and cruelly massacred and that the name of Lichfield, or Field of the Dead, is derived from them.

Martyrs of Ethiopia – 3 saints:   A group of Christians martyred together for their faith. We know the names of three – Auriga, Claudia and Rutile.

Martyrs of Jerusalem – 2 saints:   A group of Christians martyred together for their faith. We know the names of two – Stephen and Vitalis.

Martyrs of Lichfield: Many Christians suffered at Lichfield (aka Lyke-field, meaning field of dead bodies), England in the persecutions of Diocletian.   Though we know these atrocities occured, we do not know the names of the saints, and we honour them as a group. Their martyrdom occurred in 304 at Lichfield, England.

Martyrs of Piacenza: A group of Christians who died together for their faith in the persecutions of Diocletian.   No details about them have survived. They were martyred on the site of church of Madonna di Campagna, Piacenza, Italy.

Martyrs of Puy – 4 saints: Missionaries, sent by Saint Fronto of Périgueux to the area of Puy, France. Tortured and martyred by local pagans.   We know the names – Frontasius, Severinus, Severian and Silanus.   They were beheaded in Puy (modern Puy-en-Velay), France and buried together in the church of Notre Dame, Puy-en-Velay by Saint Fronto, their bodies laid out to form a cross.

Martyrs of Syrmium – 7 saints: Group of Christians martyred together, date unknown. We know the names of seven – Acutus, Artaxus, Eugenda, Maximianus, Timothy, Tobias and Vitus – but very little else. This occurred in the 3rd or 4th century at Syrmium, Pannonia (modern Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia).

Martyrs of Tomi – 3 saints: Three brothers, all Christians, all soldiers in the imperial Roman army, and all three martyred in the persecutions of emperor Licinius Licinianus. We know their names – Argeus, Marcellinus and Narcissus – but little else.
They were martyred in 320 at Tomi, Exinius Pontus, Moesia (modern Constanta, Romania).

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, Papa FRANCIS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The CHRIST CHILD, The INCARNATION, The NATIVITY of JESUS

Quote/s of the Day – 25 December – Blessed is the Babe

Quote/s of the Day – 25 December – The Solemnity of the Nativity of Our Lord, Jesus Christ

Blessed is the Child, who gladdened Bethlehem today.
Blessed is the Babe, who today renewed the youth of humankind.
Blessed is the Fruit, who bowed Himself down to our hunger.
Blessed is the gracious One,
who suddenly enriched our poverty and supplied our need.
Blessed is He, whose tender mercy led Him to heal our infirmities.
Blessed is He, whom freedom crucified, because He permitted it.
Blessed is He, whom also the wood bore, because He gave it leave.
Blessed is He, whom the grave bound, when He set limits to Himself.
Blessed is He, whose free choice brought Him to the womb and to birth.
Blessed is He, who sealed our soul
and adorned and betrothed her to Himself.
Blessed is the beautiful One, who remade us in His image.
Blessed is He, who made our flesh a tabernacle for His hiddenness.
Blessed is He, who with our tongue spoke out His secrets.
Blessed is the Word of the most high, who became flesh today for us.blessed is the child - 25 dec 2019 st ephrem.jpg

“The Firstborn entered the womb …
Glorious and unseen in entering,
humble and visible in birth.
He was God in entering
and He was man in birth.
A marvel and mystery to hear –
fire entered the womb,
put on a body
and came forth!”

St Ephrem (306-373)
Father and Doctor of the Churchthe firstborn entered the womb - st ephrem 25 dec 2019.jpg

 

“Christ is born, glorify Him!
Christ from heaven,
go out to meet Him!
Christ on earth, be exalted!
Sing to the Lord all the whole earth
and that I may join both in one word,
let the heavens rejoice
and let the earth be glad,
for Him who is of heaven
and then of earth.
Christ in the flesh,
rejoice with trembling and with joy,
with trembling because of your sins,
with joy because of your hope.”

St Gregory Nazianzen (329-390)
Father and Doctor of the Churchchrist is born glorify him - st regory of nazianzen 25 dec 2019.jpg

“This day,
He who Is,
is Born
and He, who Is,
becomes what He
was not.”

St John Chrysostom (347-407)
Father and Doctor of the Churchthis day he who IS is born and becomes what he IS not - st john crysostom 25 dec 2019

“Let the just rejoice,
for their Justifier is born.
Let the sick and infirm rejoice,
for their Saviour is born.
Let the captives rejoice,
for their Redeemer is born.
Let slaves rejoice,
for their Master is born.
Let free men rejoice,
for their Liberator is born.
Let All Christians rejoice,
for Jesus Christ is born!”

St Augustine (354-430)
Father & Doctor of the Churchlet the just rejoice their justifier is born st augustine 25 dec 2019.jpg

“Never was a whimpering bit of humanity
so powerful that, while lying on His bed of straw,
He could command the very stars
to direct whom He wished to visit Him.
Never a child so wise or so rich as this little Infant
who was full of grace and incarnate truth.
Never anyone so marvellous
as to be at once so small and so great,
true God and true Man,
the Uncreated Word and weak human flesh,
mighty King and a lowly slave.
Never had any child so emptied Himself
of all that He really was,
in order to become a tiny, speechless, naked, unknown babe.”never-was-a-whimpering-bit-of-humanity-st-peter-canisius-25-dec-2018 and 2019jpg

“Christmas Day is nothing if not a day of universal joy.
Children should rejoice because on this day,
God Himself
became as one of them;
virgins, because a Virgin brought forth
and remained unstained,
even after giving birth;
wives, because one of their number,
became the Mother of God;
sinners, because their Mediator and Saviour and Healer,
has come to redeem them;
the just, because their Reward, exceeding great,
has been born into the world.
In truth, all faithful Christians,
should rejoice, that their Creator and Lord,
has taken on human flesh and begun His reign
over the hearts of men,
not only as God
but also as the Son of Man
among the children of men.”

St Peter Canisius (1521-1397)
Doctor of the Churchchristmas-day-is-nothing-if-not-st-peter-canisius-25-dec-2018 and 2019.jpg

“Arise, all you nobles and peasants,
Mary invites all, rich and poor,
just and sinners,
to enter the cave of Bethlehem,
to adore and to kiss the feet
of her new-born Son.
Go in, then, all you devout souls,
go and see the Creator
of heaven and earth on a little hay,
under the form of a little Infant
but so beautiful that He sheds
all around rays of light.
Now that He is born
and is lying on the straw,
the cave is no longer horrible
but is become a paradise.
Let us enter,
let us not be afraid!”

St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787)
Doctor of the Churcharise all you nobles and peasants, mary invites all - 25 dec 2019

“Today, the Son of God is born and everything changes.
The Saviour of the world comes to partake of our human nature;
no longer are we alone and forsaken.
The Virgin offers us her Son
as the beginning of a new life.
The true light has come to illumine our lives
so often beset by the darkness of sin.
Today we once more discover who we are!
Tonight we have been shown the way to reach the journey’s end.
Now must we put away all fear and dread,
for the light shows us the path to Bethlehem.
We must not be laggards; we are not permitted to stand idle.
We must set out to see our Saviour lying in a manger.
This is the reason for our joy and gladness:
this Child has been “born to us”;
he was “given to us”, as Isaiah proclaims (cf. 9:5).
The people who for for two thousand years
has traversed all the pathways of the world,
in order to allow every man and woman to share in this joy,
is now given the mission of making known “the Prince of peace”
and becoming His effective servant in the midst of the nations.”

Pope Francis
Homily on the Solemnity
of the Nativity of the Lord, 2015today the son of god is born - pope francis - I think 25 dec 2018.jpg